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    Depression is not a sign of personal weakness. It is a significant, potentially life-threatening, symptom of MS that interferes with function and quality of life and makes other MS symptoms feel worse. Have you experienced depression related to your MS? Share your experiences, tips and questions below. And check back in later this month as we discuss depression in MS with an expert in the mental health and MS field.

  • maria1

    Looking for solutions was the only way i was getting any relief. Every symptom that was not fixed  with a pill I kept working on. This lead me to discovering that ms was not the answer to everything that bothered me. So I acquired a host of other definitions for symptoms, sleep apnea, hypothroidism etc. and on an on.

    After moving to a rural midwest area with nothing but trees, hay and cows, driving to shop became an event the was not done every day, nor every week. And I began to get some relief from the constant pain. They said it was fibromyalgia, so it was something i was forced to live with. But, now that I no longer get into  the car on a regular basis I am a real person. I am homebound now, because I do not like to be in pain all the time. And I spend my time finding ways to keep myself amused.

    Without the internet and the information I can research online my life would be most miserable. Not giving up looking for solutions to end some of my suffering is a better way to live with ms. Searching for answers gives me something to do, and solves some of my problems. Besides that I am educating myself, learning something every day. Exercising my brain to make my life better. And refusing to be a victim.

  • chericeomg

         looking for solutions also. im not good with chating with people . i dont go out much because fear of the pain. the pain makes you not want to move .it's rough feeling like no one understand ,confined depressed . sometimes im afraid to tell  my husban just how depressed i really am .i just wait til there sleepand have a good cry .i was the most positive person ever . im truly looking for things to do but i've been having alot of pain in my hands and wrist . i'm sorry for this depressing story i just wanted to say your not alone .i hope you feel better 

  • alice84

    I agree completely with your ending conclusion of REFUSING TO BE A VICTIM. All that we have is ourselves ultimately - brain exercise is something I feel that I should focus on more. You posted something recently that was helpful to me and I'm sure many others - Super Brain a PBS thing. You posted the entire program Pt 1 & 2... very cool!

    You provide inspiration all from the non-painful place that is your home, AND you're OKAY with that! That is the inspiration you give me.

    When I read that, I was feeling really down and I felt a sense of peace after taking all of that in. Thanks for always being on here and even if we don't message each other all the time - I know that I can always get something from one of your posts or comments on a discussion.

    Thank you.
     

  • looneybiz

    MS is a relentless enemy and occasionally, I will also get depressed that I have to fight this war. It can take away our independance, our pride, and our feeling of self worth if we let it.

    We can fight it by exercising, eating right, taking all the right medications and supplements... and still lose battles to it. I have progressive MS, and I feel like I'm fighting to keep a line drawn in the sand that I don't want my enemy to cross. I give it everything I have and still lose ground every day.

    That will no doubt depress anyone.

    Thing is, if I gave up, if I didn't fight by exercising, eating right, and taking supplements, I would lose more. I am confident that doing all this fighting has slowed my physical progression, but I am more sure that if I wasn't fighting, I would become much more depressed and thus lose the mental struggle.

    Fighting through the discomfort and pain is worth it because of the mental attitude you have. You gain a sense of accomplishment sticking it to your enemy and not giving in to it. Doing something to spite it.

    Over the last 6 months I have really taken my fight with my enemy to another level. My balance has improved and I have been able to have a bit more stamina. More than that though, I have gained some pride back... pride that I'm not taking this laying down. Prayer and reliance on God has helped my motivation in more ways than I can express.

  • tessjune10

    Fighting a war that may win occassionally can definitely be tiring, but I love how you ended your comment with how powerful God is to help you have the motivation to keep going. 

    Whether it is Christianity, or another spiritual belief, I think believing in a "higher power" is a beautiful thing. We don't have to do this on our own! Sometimes friends and family don't understand what it's like to live with MS or think about the future...but with a belief in something more we can have hope!

  • gjlisGLORIA

    Thank you, biz. 

    Your comments on how diet, exercise help you motivate me to follow suit.

    I get soooo tired often that I just want to sleep. I think that I will try again tomorrow to follow your advuce.

    Thanks again, biz 🌸.

    GLORIA

  • cloughfamily4
    looneybiz wrote:

    MS is a relentless enemy and occasionally, I will also get depressed that I have to fight this war. It can take away our independance, our pride, and our feeling of self worth if we let it.

    We can fight it by exercising, eating right, taking all the right medications and supplements... and still lose battles to it. I have progressive MS, and I feel like I'm fighting to keep a line drawn in the sand that I don't want my enemy to cross. I give it everything I have and still lose ground every day.

    That will no doubt depress anyone.

    Thing is, if I gave up, if I didn't fight by exercising, eating right, and taking supplements, I would lose more. I am confident that doing all this fighting has slowed my physical progression, but I am more sure that if I wasn't fighting, I would become much more depressed and thus lose the mental struggle.

    Fighting through the discomfort and pain is worth it because of the mental attitude you have. You gain a sense of accomplishment sticking it to your enemy and not giving in to it. Doing something to spite it.

    Over the last 6 months I have really taken my fight with my enemy to another level. My balance has improved and I have been able to have a bit more stamina. More than that though, I have gained some pride back... pride that I'm not taking this laying down. Prayer and reliance on God has helped my motivation in more ways than I can express.


     
  • cloughfamily4
    Hi there!  I have just joined after being diagnosed since February of 1997.  It took me admitting and
    accepting this ridiculous and unpredictable disease to even want to join something like this site, let alone talk about how bad the depression can get! Thanks for having the courage and strength to open up and share!  It's definitely a different battle everyday!  I'm 46 with relapsing-remitting MS.  2 daughters and a husband of 20 years!  I try and be grateful for the fact I can still walk and drive!  The hardest thing is the fatigue, the depression and the pain-the pain according to most doctors and people who don't walk in our shoes
    say doesn't exist!!! Well,  we definitely know bettere!  And I agree without God and mine and everyone's prayers 
    , I would not be standing here today!!! God bless!!
  • maria1

    Maybe we are like the snake, we shed the old skin and spend time learning to adjusting to the new one. Once we are comfortable with the new skin we get on with our lives. And as we get comfortable with the new skin, it changes. As long as we are comfortable with the skin we are wearing the fit becomes less of a problem, then we shed it and grow a new one. it may look just like the old one but we are comfortable.

  • nerij

    I relate to that anaolgy so very well! I am finally comfortable in my own "new" skin. I can tell people about my MS without crying anymore. I have come to terms with my diagnosis and "it is what it is."

  • nerij

    Depression and MS are strongly linked. At least for me it is. I sometimes wonder the severety of my depressin. When I was first diagnosed, I cried just about every moment I had to myself and would never want to start my day, because "what's the point? I have MS and my life is over." I constantly think about how MS is going to take away the things I love to do, which is being an active and independant woman. 

    I play field hockey at my college and am in my junior year. As of right now, I am having a great season and starting most games and playing almost the full time. I am not as depressed now as I was when diagnosed. I was diagnosed in July of this year but have had symtoms since 2014. The turning point for me was when I started to get better after my relapse and was able to walk, jog and run again. That's when I knew there was hope for me playing field hockey this year. Exercise is a great outlet for me, as well as friends and family. Whenever I am feeling down now, I just let my boy friend no and he usually will say things to me that make me feel much better. I wont go to my friends yet when im feeling that way because I do not want to be a burden to them or for them to think differently of me. Trying to stay positive through this journey is what has gotten me this far through the fight and I continue to fight everyday.

     

     

  • hmontgom

    I know how you feel about approaching your friends, not wanting to be the "debbie downer" or burden them with your issues. I haven't been able to do it yet either. My boyfriend is also a big help and that is so important to me I am sure to let him know how much I appreciate it. My parents are also really the only other people I can cry to about the situation. I tell my mom, "You don't have to give me advice on how to feel better, just tell me its going to be ok and you love me" because, yeah she can get overwhelming to me with her stories of all the people she knows who have MS and what THEY do.
    I also wanted to comend you for getting out and exercising and getting back on your feet. My depression ends up killing any plans to go do something fun or exercise, which in turns fuels the depression. I know getting more exercise would make me feel better but sometimes it just doesnt matter. Don't stop getting that endorphine high no matter what happens because it sure does help if you can just get started at it!

  • kjsdunn

     You are so young keep fighting keep exercising keep doing everything you love and who knows hopefully your relapses will be few and far between you can live a very productive and active life. You have received a diagnosis at a young age therefore allowing you to treat this disease and remain as relapse free as possible that's truly a huge positive. Listen to your body and stay positive. 

  • lm333

    nerij wrote:

    Depression and MS are strongly linked. At least for me it is. I sometimes wonder the severety of my depressin. When I was first diagnosed, I cried just about every moment I had to myself and would never want to start my day, because "what's the point? I have MS and my life is over." I constantly think about how MS is going to take away the things I love to do, which is being an active and independant woman. 

    I play field hockey at my college and am in my junior year. As of right now, I am having a great season and starting most games and playing almost the full time. I am not as depressed now as I was when diagnosed. I was diagnosed in July of this year but have had symtoms since 2014. The turning point for me was when I started to get better after my relapse and was able to walk, jog and run again. That's when I knew there was hope for me playing field hockey this year. Exercise is a great outlet for me, as well as friends and family. Whenever I am feeling down now, I just let my boy friend no and he usually will say things to me that make me feel much better. I wont go to my friends yet when im feeling that way because I do not want to be a burden to them or for them to think differently of me. Trying to stay positive through this journey is what has gotten me this far through the fight and I continue to fight everyday.

     

     


     

    You go, girl! Live your life, however you can! =D

    I feel your pain, and know we are all behind you on this!

  • andrewborntrager

    To be honest, if someone diagnosed with MS told me that they weren't experiencing depression, I would seriously question their honesty and level of denial. It's like saying you're completely fine after the death of a loved one; it just doesn't make sense. I'm not saying it's necessary to be depressed, but it's definitely normal!

    Really, the worst depression I ever experienced was a side effect of Plegridy. Thankfully, I'm no longer on that medication and I'm feeling much better than before. That's not to say I don't occassionally get depressed, but at least I'm not suicidal on a daily basis!

     

     

  • gjlisGLORIA

    Hee, hee -I like your sense humoor, Andrew! 

     I have found that 'depression' takes on many forms in me such as unexpected emotions which, in turn, lead to exhaustion, back pain, fatigue, etc. Not good for relationships that's for sure. But I cannot turn into a hermit for the sake of others, so, do you have any suggestions?

    Thanks, Andrew 🙋.

    Gloria

     

  • maria1

     Went to the hosp for tests this week. Two hours to get there, half hour wait to be tested, every step of the way I was reminded there was a copay due, which I had paid two weeks in advance(first time I had ever had to pay in advance) (wonder if I forgot I had paid and paid again would they refund the difference - enough for the sisters of mercy). Then after two hours of testing another two hours to get home.

    The people were reasonably nice, yet the humiliation is lingering. Having ms is about dealing with the losses, if I lose my sight-I'll learn braille, if I lose use of my legs-I get a rolling chair etc. Now after more than 50yrs of ms I am watching the last of the money fly out the window. More than half my annual income is gone before the first of March. When I ask for assistance I am told I make too much money. I dont pay any income tax so there is nothing to get back. When I fist started betaseron back in 93 or 94 it was $900/mo now it is more than $5,100./mo and the copay rises each year but not income.

    The exterior burdens of ms are bigger than the disease, at least with the disease you change change your mind set, how does one adapt to a increasing poverty that is not by government standards destitute, when one can not afford to move nor afford to stay where they are. When one needs to choose between eating and medication. Oh i KNOW,  invite seven million (people) to share my abode and hope they chip in for expenses. 

    I know, one day at a time, maybe I am tired from the week's excursion, maybe reality has it's own weight, maybe i am getting ill, but the real world today is bleak and I wanted to share it because I am always working on cheering everyone up and wanted you all to know that I have gray days too, or just that I needed to say it out loud, or that i am feeling sorry for myself, or this is the best way I know to help get the thoughts out of my head, or perhaps today I just feel like being depressed, or all of the above. Needless to say, I am not in a good mood.

     

  • maria1

    two naps later and things dont look as bleak.

  • jeannef1

    Dear Maria,

    Glad you are feeling better now! You do always try to help cheer others and it must be hard to keep a sunny disposition ALL the time. I'm sorry for what you are going through now and I totally empathize. I had diverticulitis this week and I had to try to treat it myself because we can't afford the $15.00 copay. We are paying our rent and buying groceries on credit cards right now and I don't see an answer in the near future. SSDI for me is $600 a month and $150 of that goes to medical insurance.My husband is 64 and can't find another job, we have gone through all unemployment and savings. I don't think I'm depressed at this point, just numb. I believe in God, I just hope He believes in me!