At every moment of the day, it feels like I view life through a screen, or some kind of barrier, which dulls all emotions positive or negative. It's such a strong sensation in my head that it has a physical presence, right behind my temple. Because of it, I can make a group of acquaintances laugh and laugh with them, but feel almost no pleasure from it. If I fail an exam, I'm slightly upset, but go back to normal a few minutes later. A few months ago, I still had periods of sadness that were kind of comfortable, but now I'm a zombie. Lately, it's like I haven't even been alive. I'm only 18, and if this continues my entire adolescence will certainly be wasted.
Do any of you know what I mean? Have you improved your situation at all? Is it even possible?
I don't want to diagnose you with a mental disorder based off of a signal post, but this sort of lifelessness and inability to feel things are symptoms of depression. It might help to talk to a professional about this, if it bothers you enough. There's no shame in being concerned for one's mental health.
>>10680 I have a therapist, but he's quite old and honestly doesn't seem to understand any of my problems. I'm going to college in August, but until then this is all I've got since I have no money.
All I really want is a strategy. Antidepressants don't seem helpful for numbness, and so far neither exercise nor therapy has done anything for me. I just want someone who's dealt with a problem like this to speak up, because it really feels hopeless now.
I went through this a few years back. I was completely lifeless and numb, worked 12 hour days and drank most of the other hours. I don't know that I can share a strategy because what wound up happening to me was that I fuarrrked up, drove drunk, and got arrested. At that point I was really low, because I realized that I didn't care about living any longer, I hated what I had become and didn't enjoy living. I was very suicidal but ultimately decided not to go through with it, mainly through force of will. I told myself, "it isn't that bad living just a few more minutes. You can always kill yourself in another minute."
At that point in my life I realized what things were important to me, what people were important to me, and that I didn't want to be numb and checked out. It was very slow progress, but I quit drinking, left the area, and started doing what I wanted to do with my life. I spent time with the people I cared about, and somewhere, after maybe a year or two, even became happy on a semi-regular basis.
I am not a doctor, so I can't give you advice worth paying attention to. But If I had any advice, I would say, focus on what you care about, what you want to care about, or what means a lot to you. You might not have much in that category right now. That's ok. Just take it one day at a time. Some days all I had time for is not killing myself. Not every day is going to be good, but some of them will.
>>10682 Do you think it was a change in attitude that saved you, or did it fizzle out naturally? To be honest, I don't care about anything very much, and I have no people I care about, but I can still improve my health if you think that will benefit much.
>>10683 I think, for whatever it's worth, that I saved myself through years of focus and working on changing myself.
I understand that some people do get over it naturally, but I didn't whether because I fuarrrked up and nose-dived to the bottom too fast, or because I couldn't I may never know. Day to day, it seemed to be the same struggle but month to month it got better.
It took at least six months to start feeling better (the exact amount of time before I moved away from my previous surroundings), but once I did it started to feel more natural. I was still pretty weak and stressed a year later, although I was no longer suicidal, and a year after that I was actually happy.
If you have to work to survive (gross, but subsistence-level living is intense), find what you identify with personally. Go where you are genuinely valued as a person, not just as a cheap piece of labor. Don't be afraid to try something new if you're not doing something that stimulates you intellectually or you'll end up seeking stimulation in other ways. Or you'll end up in an existential crisis when the numbness wears off. It's taken me almost a decade, but the more time I spend searching the closer I get to finding something I'm well-suited to doing where I'm valued as an individual. Not there yet but closer than I've ever been.
If you have nothing meaningful to do with your time it's easy to find yourself doing meaningless or harmful things to attempt to fill the void. If you're caught in that trap, search for an activity that naturally motivates you and doesn't cause harm to yourself or the people around you.
I'm not a medical professional and don't know your situation but in my experience if you require drugs to live the life you're living you're not living the right life. Brain chemicals are the result of depression, not the cause; why rely on chemical anti-depressants when you can make your life less depressing?
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>>10686 I have hope it'll improve some over the next few months, since my parents' divorce and moving screwed me up a bit. I'm not suicidal, and I can get through the day if I try, so I'm grateful for that. I'm glad things turned out better for you, man.
>>10687 Social media kind of screws with my head. There's too much content in a small space, it just seems super unhealthy. Not sure if chans apply though.
I don't think much about being valued right now, I'm a student anyhow. My main "hobby" I guess is reading about meditating, and doing it. Over the years I think I placed a lot of negative filters on how I view the world to lessen the impact of painful things, and if what I've read is true, meditation will help me remove them.
I've heard that antidepressants don't do anything to cure numbness, so I've avoided them.
Glad things are working out for you as well. Thanks for the advice.
It's so simple as to be counter-intuitive, but cold showers and coffee are an excellent fast return to the immediate and the visceral.
A faceful of freezing water activates a drowning reflex that shunts more oxygen to the brain, and IMO tickles the will to live, and caffeine, according to Leary, stimulates the "symbolic-dexterity" circuit of the brain.
It's a good remedy for the post-teens nihilistic existential blahs.
>>10720 Oh yes. Starting the day with a cold shower automatically qualifies you as a sort of medium-badass, so when life soykafs on you for the rest of the day you can just be the kind of bad mother fuarrrker who took a cold shower that morning, so you don't even care.
>>10679 I've had similar feelings during my college years. Personally I found that I had some negative habits that were interfering with my demeanor and happiness. Progress comes from the accumulation of small consistent efforts. I've improved by identifying what practices help me be more productive. Sleep, nutrition, hygiene all help. If there is anything unnecessary that is monopolizing your time you should ask whether you need to take a break. It is very difficult but push yourself to try new hobbies, hopefully they will be more fulfilling.
My whole life man. I didnt even realize for a long time that there was another side of the fence. It became much worse a good while ago and its when i realized i need serious help, but i cant get myself to do anything. Im 27 btw so yes its realistic you waste your adolescence like me, i feel sorry for you. I have no idea if there is a way out.
>>10845 Please don't, to hell with meds. Find a diferent therapist or dump your problems here to get advice, the reasons for your state will still be there even if you're pilled up. You gotta understand your state of mind and act accordingly, throwing drugs at your brain is no real solution.
>>10859 I can't see a reason for my state. My interests, pleasures, and thoughts all change rapidly from week to week, and the end result is that I'm less happy as a whole. I've done lots of productive things like finish several novels and spend more time outside, but I don't feel I'm growing. The root of my problem seems to lie in brain chemistry. How could I fix that without pills? What would a therapist do?