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Question
Posted by: Cloudy | 2004/01/08

Depression - Genetic or Situational?

I've been in a 2nd marriage for 6 years and have been depressed for as long. I am very thin (last 5 years) and tend to get flu, bronichitis, pneumonia on a regular basis. My problem is my sad/anxious feelings. It's really getting to a point now where I don't see any hope. I have 3 children and have become a real ogre with them. I'm sure it's influencing them too. I've been to 2 psychologists and they said I'm not depressed but highly strung and anxious (because of my situation). Others can't believe that I'm feeling so down because I've got everything "going" for me. My husband watches pornography (I have a serious problem with it), I've found telephone numbers of escort agencies in the house (I battle to believe that it was just as a joke between him and friends), he always looks at other women (I consider myself a well-groomed attractive women), will even stop and turn around to have a better look. He's suddenly become very short to the children and I, to a point where I feel he's abusive to the children. Kicked a ball in my son's face when he was mad with him, smacks my other son on the head. Complains, nags, whines, criticizes all of us the whole day. Needless to say, our sex life has been almost non-existant the last 5 years (maybe once a month). I've been to a sexologist (same one as on your website) and she said there's nothing wrong with me physically but asked that he comes to see her. That is now a year ago and he still hasn't made an appointment. But boy oh boy, he's the first to drop hints about how bad things are for him, he's a man and needs it!!! I have absolutely no libido whatsoever and don't even enjoy sex anymore when it happens. I never have an ograsm anymore although I fake it all the time. I don't work at the moment, have no savings, no pension, no property. I have nothing and have come to fear that if things to haywire I will have a serious problem. We've been for marriage counselling after I left him once, but things really haven't changed. He humiliates me in front of others (not regularly) by saying nasty things about me which isn't even true! On the other hand, he has so many good points and he looks after the children and I very well as far as material things are concerned. Just for the record, I am a realistic, balanced person and my family and friends will be shocked to know that I have these anxiety attacks. I never used to be a suspicious type of person. Should I go see a psychologist again? Maybe if I take anit-depressants I will feel numb and have no suspicios feelings. Do you think I'll ever get rid of my suspicions towards my husband?

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Our expert says:
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Dear Cloudy,
Sorry to hear of all this turmoil and unhappiness. It sounds as if there are different aspects to this clump of problems, needing different approaches. You need to see a Psychiatrist, not a psychologist, for a full assessment of your situation, and advice on the extent to which medication can help reduce the extent to which you are having anxiety attacks, and perhaps depression. If these are indicated ( and the psychiatrist can tell you after the assessment ) they could help quite a bit. Maybe marriage counselling should be tried again, with you two going together ( not waiting for him to make an appointment ) and focussing at first on his increasing abusiveness towads you and the children. From the sound of it he probably has problems as well which he isn't admitting to, and maybe he can face this issue within the marriage counselling, and maybe even proceed towards treatment for himself specifically.

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