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Depression--Is it just me?

robinh's picture
Posts: 23
Joined: Jun 2001

Is it just me or do others have this same problem? It's been two years ago this month that I had a bi-lateral mastectomy followed by immediate reconstruction for DCIS. Because it was found so early and because I opted for the mastectomies as the form of treatment, I avoided having to go through chemo and/or radiation. I have been pleased with my decision and with the reconstruction--no complaints. My problem is that every once in awhile, I just seem to get a little depressed. I'm not even sure why--I know that my chances of having it show back up are almost nil...so I don't think that's it. Like I said before, I'm pleased with the reconstruction, so I'm sure that's not it. I feel guilty about feeling depressed because I know how very lucky I am that it was caught so early and that I avoided some of the other painful treatments that most of you had to endure. I also find that my self-confidence fluctuates dramatically. Just when I think I'm fine with everything and that it's all behind me, it just kind of sneaks up on me out of no where.

Posts: 1416
Joined: Mar 2001

As good as life can be we can't help but feel so deep all that we had to face. It is very real to us and it is hard to squelch the cries of many fears. I think depression is very common and that as time and distance should bring security we are often reminded there just isn't any. Being in good health and watching your health, knowing your risks are the best that anyone can do. I think we should consintrate more on what we can do and not so much on the things we don't have any control over. Your right it can, sneak right up on us and we are surprised when we are facing it.
Hang in there,

Posts: 270
Joined: Jul 2001

I was very depressed during treatment and for months after finishing treatment (lumpectomy, chemo, radiation). I finally went on Zoloft and I am now very much in control and feeling very positive about my future health. Well ... more like if I have problems again it won't be the end of the world. Some people are prone to depression. It can even run in families and a life threatening illness can be a trigger even if you've never had a problem before. Your doctor can determine if it requires medication to get through it. If it bothers you enough to talk about it ... it's probably worth getting treatment. My best wishes go out to you. Jamie

Posts: 150
Joined: Jul 2002

I also was very depressed. It was hormonal because the chemo forced me into early menopause. The doc gave me Effexor 75 mg. It has really helped my mood swings. The doctors are very understanding. Just talk to him/her. Sometimes, it's a letdown from all the attention (good & bad), and then you're on your own.

Posts: 160
Joined: Nov 2000

Yes, others do have the same problem, and you are joining in with the rest of us. I am also a two-year survivor, and don't know why, but some days are much worse than others. I keep asking myself also, why I feel that way and there is no simple answer. One of my Drs. recommended me going on paxil, but I refuse to take any more medication. You just hang in there, the same as the rest of us, and things will get better. God Bless - Lucy

Posts: 235
Joined: Oct 2001

My dear girl, you might well be experiencing a classic example of post traumatic stress syndrome. Heaven knows you have earned it! This nightmare is very real and affects each of us in so many ways. I think we all have exactly what you have. In the night, when things are still, the goblins come out to march around the room. Every one of our rooms. Don't feel bad about feeling bad, you are entitled. If this continues, try anti-depressants, they are not addictive and my doc gave them to both my husband and me. They sure knit up the raveled sleeve of care. They help get you thru the next few years, and you will gain back your confidence and not have nearly as much grief. Give it a try. When you get your feet back under you you can stop them. They sure help. God bless you, Shirlann

Posts: 321
Joined: May 2002

Hi, as you can see from the other responses, you are not alone. We all have days like that, they come out of nowhere. You should have seen me 2 month ago..... I talked to my doctors, they are so understanding. I am much better now, take each day as it comes. I also take EFFEXOR XR 75 mg, it helps, mostly for hotflashes, but I think for depression also. It looks like you are doing well otherwise.Stay positive, if you want to vent or are lonely, depressed, come to this site, we'll help you get through it. The girls here helped me. In time you will get more confident. Take care and god bless you.Lots of hugs....Emmi

Posts: 166
Joined: Aug 2001

Robin,sorry to hear that you're feeling down. I know exactly what you're talking about and you're not alone at all..I finished chemo back in oct.2001,had reconstruction started april 2002 and now am waiting for my permanant implant to be put in and i'm so grateful to be on the uphill now,but like you I was feeling really blue and happy to be here at the same time. Three weeks ago I finanlly mentioned to the doctor about this and he put me on Exxofer and it has helped so much..i tried to deal with it but its just too hard,,its so scarey to know all we went through and my biggest anixiety was the thought of it returning..It still is scarey but with all the wonderful support on here it makes it so much easier to know that we are not alone...I wish you the best and hope you find something to help you..God Bless, Karin

Posts: 317
Joined: Apr 2002

I don't think it's just you.....it seems to be a common thread with women who have had to consider their mortality. There are so many medications that can help if it becomes too bothersome. One book that helped me quite a bit is Living Beyond Breast Cancer by Marissa Weiss. It really lets you know you're not alone, and not losing your mind. I get "the guilts" too, because my cancer was caught early Stage I, and I got by with a lumpectomy and radiation. I have learned, though, that the stage has nothing to do with the fact that you still worry. I pray a lot, and it helps me so much. Are you on tamoxifen? If so, it could be hormonal...well, it could be hormonal even if you're not on it. I wish you all the best, and please let us know how you're doing. God bless, Cyndi

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