Depression and Weight Issues Have you been diagnosed with depression, are possibly on depression medication, and find it affects your weight loss efforts? Post here for support!

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Old 01-01-2018, 08:04 PM   #1  
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Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: Chicago, IL
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S/C/G: 170/166/120

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Unhappy Hello from Chicago

Hi all, first post. Probably going to be long.

My handle is tinypixiexoxo not to be ironic, but because that's the name I used when I free-lance modeled in college. I didn't ever get paid, but I had a small following, and I really enjoyed it. Then I met my (now) husband and I stopped modeling to feel good about myself, because he helped me feel good. I started to enjoy different things in life (food, drinks, etc) and slowly started to gain weight. When I modeled (2006-09), I was about 120 lbs... when we married in 2013, I was 137.5.

I've been suffering with depression and anxiety for a long, long time. I'm terrible at taking meds... I'll start on them and a couple months later I'll either stop because I "feel better" or I don't and get frustrated. Any rational person can see that if I feel better, it's probably because of the meds....

Anyway, I got my master's degree in psychology, and took my first job at a mental health facility right after we got married. That job involved eating meals with ED patients to model "healthy eating." I kept gaining. That's also the time when I started to notice this feeling in my throat... a tightness and sometimes spontaneous vomiting. It was diagnosed as anxiety, not medical, and it was so bad I left that job. That was exactly 2 years ago.

I've had a couple odd jobs and my anxiety and depression always got in the way. Most recently, I worked in a mental health hospital, in the inpatient unit. I did counseling and ran psychoeducational groups. I was very good as a therapist. But my symptoms were always there. One day, while conducting rounds, I found a young woman who had managed to hang herself. It's very difficult to accomplish that (and part of why we do rounds every 15 minutes). I saved her life and everyone called me a hero. But something snapped.

I realized I felt the same as the patients. Perhaps that's why I was so good at running the groups and counseling the patients. I was in their shoes. A couple weeks after the "event," I left the job. That was September 2017.

Ever since September, I've spiraled downward. I can barely get out of bed to feed and let out the pugs in the morning. Once I manage to do that, I'm on the couch, binge watching shows or surfing the computer. I don't move. And it's taken a toll on my body.

I've gained 5 more pounds since September, and my body physically hurts. I'm not sure if it's muscle atrophy, or what, but I ache. It feels as if the circulation is being slowly cut from my arms, and I can't sleep comfortably. I also am painfully aware of other areas, like under my chin, inside my elbows, inside my knees, my armpit/breast area, inbetween my legs... I can feel almost all the time, sitting or standing, the increased fat (I think) that cause the skin-on skin feeling, that I've never had before. This, 170, is the most I've weighed.

As a therapist, I know what I'd tell a patient who told me exactly what I put here. Exercise! Start small. Cut carbs. Cut alcohol (another issue...) Get into a daily routine and stick to it. Leave the house once a day. Cook healthy meals. Take your meds. Be honest with your therapist and psychiatrist.

I'd say all that to someone else. But I can't seem to do it myself. My husband is incredibly supportive, but he's also enabling me. I can't bring myself to tell him that, because I don't want it to change. Well, I do, but it's that cycle. I also have an exercise room with a treadmill, stationary bike, kettle bells, resistance bands, aerobic stepper... and a tv to watch Netflix... and I can't bring myself to even use it.

It's ironic that I'm typing this on the first of the New Year. Honestly, I only was compelled to find this forum because I tried taking a nap, and was so aware of all those areas on my body and my arms were going numb... I got really angry in bed and marched down here to my computer and found this forum. Then I read some entries in the Depression and Weight issues and found a lot of similarities between other members and I.

So, here I am. If you got this far, thank you for reading. Specific questions:

1) Has anyone else noticed, while gaining weight, these certain areas of the body starting to feel uncomfortable? Especially the circulation in the arms?

2) Anyone out there known exactly what they need to do to change, as I do (or claim I do), and find themselves immobilized to change?

3) What diets and/or exercise plans do you recommend for someone who has lost a ton of muscle mass due to being sedentary for 4 months?

4) Is anyone interested in being my buddy? I'm on FB... I'm 30 from Chicago. Maybe someone whom I can check in with on occasion..support and be supported by. I duno how this works.


Thanks. Have a happy new year.
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Old 01-01-2018, 10:28 PM   #2  
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Welcome to the site! It can be a good area for support, including mental and physical health. I think there are threads around here for individuals losing weight and dealing with depression, anxiety, or others. Perhaps one or more of those may help? And you probably know this, being a professional, but it can't hurt to hear it from someone else: Have you thought about talking to a therapist of some kind? It sounds like that would do you the most good. It sounds like you want and need help working through things. Getting help even when you don't want things to change (even as you do want them to change) is really freaking hard, but so necessary.

As for your other questions (these answers are not a professional opinion and are based only on my personal experience):
1. Absolutely yes. My upper arms in particular felt like they were squeezed so tight by my side and arm fat that they got numb. I'm in the 150s now and only had one minor incident lately - it got WAY better after losing like 40 lbs.
2. Absolutely yes. It took someone close to me intervening and telling me that something had to change because I was hurting myself. I was in such a bad place that I was 110% convinced nothing would ever help. But I got the help I needed even as I didn't want it and even as I completely believed it would never change anything. I was 150% wrong - it does help. It's never easy, but it's so much better than living in that fog. Getting started seems to always be the worst part, honestly.
3. Start with what you can do and what you WILL do. Walking is easy, cheap, and will get you out into nature or out of the house, which can help with depression. Don't take on too much - just work on setting a simple routine. Do it even when you don't want to, because you won't want to for a while.
4. There are likely to be a few people on the board who want to be a buddy. You can also check in here on different threads for support (which I do for weight loss).

Happy New Year, and good luck with everything!
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Old 01-02-2018, 01:09 PM   #3  
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Thanks for the warm welcome. I'm relieved to know that what I've experiencing is something others are too. Not that it's a good thing, but just to know I'm not alone.

The arm circulation thing had me really worried for a small while.. It started about a week ago and only got worse. I went bowling one night, on a whim, and the next day I didn't feel it at all (even in my left!).. so perhaps some movement will keep the sensation at bay.

I've asked my husband to help me clean out our fitness room before he goes back to work next week. We held an Xmas party and dumped all our stray belongings and boxes in that room. I think if I can get access to my equiptment, maybe I'll start using it again. I used to just walk on the treadmill watching something on Netflix for an hour, and the hour would fly by. That might be where I start. It's extremely cold right now in Chicago, so that rules out any outdoor activity.

I do see a therapist...I used to have another one, but she left the practice and transitioned me to a new one, and I don't really care for the new one. Perhaps the hunt for a new therapist is upon me.

I'm going to check out the support group posts now, maybe join one!
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