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Newbie Here - Hello!

Apr 15, 2019
Hey everyone,

26 year old male here. I'm new to this site, but unfortunately not new to anxiety, depression, and other mental illness. I've been on a few other anxiety forums when times were bad so, like pattern, times are a little rough right now.
Since this is an introduction thread I'll try and make it quick but I tend to type a lot. Sorry, will really try to make this not so long but I can't promise anything. I don't want this to sound like a pity party since I know a lot of us experience the same issues, so again I apologize if it comes off that way - it just feels good to get these things off my chest in writing and hopefully find some support.

1. Had a rough childhood. Parents divorced pretty young and I lived with my dad for the most part. Would see my mom every other weekend but I always got the feeling she never really cared to see me or my sister. [Because of that I was regrettably mean to her.] I ended up getting some step siblings and one of them was pretty cruel. I felt like I was always living in fear and stepping on eggshells around this step sibling. Honestly I felt pretty depressed and worthless for most of it. I would sometimes self harm as a kid but it was very, very rare.

2. Late middle-school/high school wasn't bad. To be honest, probably some of the best years of my life I think. I had good friends and would hang out with them a lot, my step sibling became a lot nicer. My mom even fought to see us more (although, I sometimes wonder if it was because we were older and she didn't have to put much effort in to take care of us).

3. First bout of BAD anxiety came around the summer after my first freshman year of college in 2012. I was working a full time summer job and one day I just woke up feeling incredibly off. I felt like I could barely speak, getting out of bed was a struggle, I couldn't eat, I couldn't sleep very well (or all I would do is sleep) and I could never really put my finger on why. I soon found out it was from anxiety and depression.

4. Basically that feeling stayed with me nonstop until about March/April of 2013 where it just seemed to fade away. I moved into my first apartment outside of the college dorms with some friends and life was okay. Like most college kids I dealt with a lot of stress from school/projects (went to an art school), but, ya know, that's typical for any college student.

5. At the end of 2014, we experienced an apartment fire due to a blown transformer box. The apartment was basically a small house so the whole thing burned. Honestly, this is the point that really affected me as I (sorry for being overdramatic here - ) still seem to experience some PTSD from that.

6. Moved into a new place with one of the same roommates. Luckily I was able to save all my college work from the fire so I was able to graduate. Ended up finding a job that correlated with my field. Life didn't seem so bad again.

7. Anxiety and depression started creeping back in. I would have bad dreams about the fire, I would get into bouts of it for a week or two at a time and it became really hard to focus at work. I ended up finally making the decision to see a therapist. It definitely helped, and I was able to go from seeing the therapist 3 times a week down to only once a week.

8. Around 2016 I started feeling complacent in life. The job I had was good (I had become full time), it paid well, but I realized it wasn't what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. So I ended up packing all my things and moving across the country to pursue another career (this one was also in my field of study but kind of different).

9. Although that was pretty stressful for a few months, it was also exciting, and eventually I found a job. I had my ups and downs during most of 2017 but nothing too severe.

10. The end of 2017 was when my depression / anxiety started really kicking back in. I started to have feelings that my new career path may not be as glamorous as I once thought. I started working on these huge projects at work that were long hours and long weeks. I felt like I wasn't ever able to recharge, and although times would calm down, I would get these insanely busy periods more frequently throughout 2018. Unfortunately I turned to drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana more often because of how on edge I felt all the time.

11. 2019 - I started the year with a huge project. Pretty much started in crunch time and had 2 months to get everything done. Those 2 months were brutal. 7 day work weeks working 10 hour days to get this done. I would come home and barely be able to form a thought because of the mental fatigue. I felt like a zombie and my derealization / depersonalization was very prominent. Little things would set me off, I felt angry and scared all the time, it wasn't pretty.

Fast forward to today - I still feel like I'm coming down from the whole thing - from everything. I've been thinking a lot about life, where I fall into it, and how I got to this point. Lately I've just been feeling empty. I've been heavily contemplating what's next, where do I go from here, do I keep working in this career or find something less stressful?

[I also have a lot of intimacy/relationship issues that I severely need to work out, but I will probably post more about that in the appropriate thread]

Sorry for the huge post, I feel like I can delve into a lot more but this would be insanely long and probably unnecessary. Will try to be active on here while my mental health is recovering but I always seem to only post/check these when my health isn't the best.

ps. I'm working on getting better (trying at the very least). I'm cutting back on alcohol and marijuana usage while also trying to find a new therapist out here. When I start to get frustrated at little things I'll try and do mental routines to calm myself down. Although I never tried any type of medication to alleviate anxiety/depression, I wouldn't be opposed if it's what the therapist would think would be best (or at least a low dosage of it).

Thanks for reading everyone :)
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