Our expert says:
Well, obviously, these are all matters that you need to discuss with your shrink, in some detail. But let's look at some of the points you raise. You're not, by far, the only one struggling wih this --- many others feel in the same boat, but, like you, they don't advertise the fact, because they feel ashamed of failing to cope.
Some folks just don't expect to be able to cope, never have coped, so don't get too stressed about it. From the sound of it you have been very capable for years, and you're used to being on top of things --- so it feels strange and frightening to have run into a situaton that isn't as easy as you maybe expected it to be.
You may be undermining your capabilities by what we call "Awfulizing" and "Catastrophizing". Instead of facing each little glitch and saying "OK, this is a bit tough --- what are the options for dealing with it ?" -- "I;m feeling nervous and a bit scared, but thats pretty normal and doesn't need to stop me... " ; you may be saying, in your mind : "Oh no ! This is absolutely awful ! I don't know exactly what to do here ! And I'm totally losing my grip on things, and I'll mess this up, and then that'll be a mess, and then I'll fal all the exams, and get expelled, and that'll be terrible and .... and ... " Eventually, you can end up blaming yourself for faling to bring peace to the Middle East. One can let it run away with one's comon sense, and start to panic. And nobody can concentrate and work well when they're panicking.
it also sounds like you have, for whatever reason, become Depressed. That's not your fault, though you do have responsibility for what you choose to do about it, and you have made the wise choice of seeing and working with a shrink, and using medications to see to what extent this will help you, over time.
Don't see it as a weakness, to tak medicines as one of the ways in which you will cope with your problems. What would you think of someone who fell downstairs and broke their leg, and then insisted that they mustn't have it put in plaster or take a painiller, because they must walk about on the broken leg on their own, without using such tools to enable tem to heal properly ?
Kep on working with your shrink, and you'll be able not only to get through this crisis you are experiencing, but potentially come out of it stronger than before. University can be tough, too --- but if you move, as you emerge from your depression, towards working with a shrink to improve your skills at recognizing and coping with the problems when they arise, without getting over-stressed, you wll be able to handle University and life after it.
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