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ann2008's picture
Posts: 119
Joined: Nov 2009

I think(know) I am depressed. I go to work only because I have to. But can't wait to get back home. I just want to sit at home. I haven't even done our taxes yet. I am afraid we are going to have to pay and that will just be one more bill to worry about. I guess that is the bottom line. SO MANY BILLS!!

Sorry about this but I need help. I am going to Medical MD next week and I want to know if anyone is on an antidepressant that helps. As you can see it is almost 3A and I am still up.
I have started doing water aerobics twice a week. I come home exhausted but feel better and it gets me out of the house. Otherwise I just want to sit home all the time. I don't want to go anywhere, talk to anyone, clean house(who does) but even if I did I don't have the energy or the stamina. Anyone?? Ann.

5678dance's picture
Posts: 39
Joined: Mar 2010

The answer for me was not an antidepressant, it was antianxiety medication. I was just totally stressed out about my cancer, my family's reaction and well being, my business, my bils, just everything. I too did not want to go out, or even get dressed. I would just stay in my jammies all day. I started taking Xanax, and my mood significantly improved. I was given Librium at first, but I didn't like how it made me feel. I felt drugged. I had also prevously been prescribed an antidepressant, but didn't like how they made me feel either. I didn't feel like me on them. I lost myself. Xanax just puts me on an even keel, and does not put me in an altered state.

Of course, this is just how my body reacts to this paticular medication. Everyone is different, and needs to find what works for them. It may take a while to figure out what is best for you, as antidepressants do not work immediately. They take a few days or so to begin to build up in your system, and do their job. The Xanax begins working right away. Discuss all the possibilities with your MD, so you can make an informed decision.


ann2008's picture
Posts: 119
Joined: Nov 2009

Thank you for your answer. Yes I know everyone reacts different. I just want to know what helped others. It gives me a direction. Glad you found something to help you.

PhillieG's picture
Posts: 4912
Joined: May 2005

I take xanax. I also take a very low dose of zoloft (anti-depressant).
They both help me.
Good luck, we have enough to deal with. I do try to stay busy and exercise too, that helps a lot.

maglets's picture
Posts: 2596
Joined: Jun 2006

I identify strongly with your story. I felt after 4 years of cancer that i had dropped into a hole. I am always the busy miss let's run around and do things....suddenly I found myself on the couch.....staring....
I have always taken one mg of ativan to help me sleep at night. Then i started an anti-depressant called effexor and it made it a huge diff for me....but it did take some time. I have told the story before but I tried a couple of other antidepressants Ann and they just knocked me flat...couldn't move....so I think it maybe takes some time to find something that will help you.

all the best and good luck....keep walking :):)


Shayenne's picture
Posts: 2370
Joined: Jan 2009

I am taking both an anti-anxiety and anti-depressant. I have had panic attacks in my past, and take Ativan for it, which also helps me sleep me at night, I also have Xanax if I need that as well, that usually knocks me right out though, so I don't take that till right before bed, the Ativan, just calms me down, I am on 100 mg of Zoloft, an anti-depressant, which really helped me. These drugs can take up to a month to get into your system to work, but they do take the edge of those dark thoughts, and helped me get out of that pitiful funk, I believe getting out, even for a walk a day, shopping, and just playing cards and board games with my kids really helps out as well...keep yourself abit busy, but also make sure your body rests :)


Smethport's picture
Posts: 15
Joined: Mar 2010

I also take Xanax and low dose Zoloft. They both work very well and don't feel drugged. I have always been a worrier and now I have something more to worry about.

greybeard64's picture
Posts: 254
Joined: Mar 2010

I also take an anti depressant along with a anti anxiety med. I have tried a couple and for me it was lexapro (depression) and xanax. I found the anti anxiety med helped me got a full night sleep. Good sleep and the lexapro got me moving again, I hope you find what works for you soon, and the water aerobics are definetly a plus.

Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2009

which might help. i take Ativan but only for trying to sleep (1-1 1/2m mgs, try to skip a nite here and there). Talk to your onc and perhaps make use of a therapist..exercising helps overcome depression/anxiety as well...

RickMurtagh's picture
Posts: 586
Joined: Feb 2010

Spending lots of time with family (my safe zone) and a close friend helped me deal with all the stress. I did not like to go outside at first, but family gatherings got me engaged in doing things I otherwise would not have done. Plus, my family was understanding if I ducked out for a nap or was picky about what I was eating (I used to be able to eat any/everything without gastric probs).

TBH, only once was I really anxious. Depressed lots, but only anxious when I was called for setting up my takedown date. I don't know why and I had the first panic attack of my life. No one was home and I felt so very alone. I could not wait for my wife to come home.

Spending time with family has been my lifeline from the start.

I am sorry your are so stressed and depressed. Meds might help, but preparing a meal TOGETHER (rarely done these days) with someone you care about might just do the trick too. Give it a try. What do you have to lose?


greybeard64's picture
Posts: 254
Joined: Mar 2010

The meal prep is a great idea. I have found, since I have been unable to work for awhile, that cooking is a nice way to make me feel productive and contributing. It is not to physically demanding, prep work can be done sitting...and for me it can be very relaxing. If you have someone to help it is even better. Kind of funny really, when our three girls were little I would sometimes cook a big breakfast/brunch on sunday, but other then that if dad was "cooking" it meant turn the porch light on because someone is delivering pizza, lol.
The crock pot is my favorite appliance in the kitchen now, well next to the dish washer...great advice Rick

Posts: 3692
Joined: Oct 2009

I agree that meal prep is a great idea. I have always loved cooking, but never more than when I am sharing it with my husband + a nice glass of wine. I love cookbooks, even just reading them. I went shopping today + picked up a cookbook called "Meals in Heels" - it looks really cute, not as serious as most cookbooks but is basically recipes that you can prepare + still enjoy company.

Posts: 810
Joined: Nov 2009

I am on Effexor, for the depression and mood swings. Oncologist prescribed and it also helps with the menapause symptoms as they took it all when they did my resection.

just4Brooks's picture
Posts: 988
Joined: Jun 2009

I also take an anti depressant along with a anti anxiety med and it sure has helped me. You do what it takes to get through this.


grammadebbie's picture
Posts: 471
Joined: Jun 2009

I also take anti depressants (prozac) and anti anxiety meds. I didn't want to take anti depressants but finally gave in and I am so glad I did. It has made a big difference and it doesnt make me feel groggy or anything like that. I also was having panic attacks frequently and would take xanax as needed. Since I have been on the anti depressants the panic attacks are few and far between.

I try to only be around people I feel comfortable with. Don't beat yourself up. Do what works for you. Rest is one of the best things for you. Also surround yourself with people who you love.

I will be praying for you. Please let us know how you're doing. The antidepressants take a while to become effective.

Blessings and Big Hugs,

Debbie (gramma)

Nana b's picture
Nana b
Posts: 3045
Joined: May 2009


tootsie1's picture
Posts: 5065
Joined: Feb 2008

I find that walking helps me "get over myself" better than anything. I just tilt my head skyward and drink in the fresh air, and it just helps.


RickMurtagh's picture
Posts: 586
Joined: Feb 2010

I always loved walking, but chemo screwed up my balance and I fell a lot, but now that I can walk reasonably well. Perhaps it is time to give it another shot - good idea Gail.

Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2009

with numbness, etc on feet bottoms and sometimes loss of balance, weakness still in core (abs) I find cane comes in handy and when I'm doing good, can walk almost as fast as I used to.(Got a walker too but find that slows me down tho its good for carrying things on the seat and basket)I use right hand to carry stuff if shopping and left for cane, keeping left arm close to body so damn picc don't move again-one more to go in two weeks(return pump later today)..\
People seem to get out of your way abit so thats another reason I like cane as I don't like anyone getting near stoma (very protective of that). In addition, if you can balance yourself on a skateboard, you can attach a shirt to the cane, raise it in the air and have the wind propel you down the street......I can't balance myself so thats out.....steve

ann2008's picture
Posts: 119
Joined: Nov 2009

I appreciate everyones help. I do cook most days but just to get it done. I hope getting help for the depression will let me enjoy it too. I am hoping with Spring coming and more sunshine will help. Also my twin grandsons(pic)are my blessing but wear me out too.
I went through surgery and chemo and did not stop long enough to think about what was going on, just that it had to be done. It has been 10 months since I finished chemo and now everything is bothering me.
I will keep everyone updated. Again Thanks.. Ann

HollyID's picture
Posts: 951
Joined: Dec 2009

I take zoloft for my anxiety on a day to day basis. Yes, it's also good for anxiety. My ativan I usually only take on the first night of Chemo. Zoloft, I take on anxiety days.

I also like to walk. I do that in a neighboring subdivision which has many roads and it's probably a 3 mile walk from my house, go all around and back to my house. I love it!! I'm also one of those that can't wait for spring to come. :)

Ann, it might not hurt to see a therapist as well. Get things off your chest. Feelings of abandonment from your onc team, or whatever else might be bothering you. I'm not afraid to admit that I spent a whole summer on my therapists couch just talking and getting things off my chest. It was the best money my insurance money ever spent on me -- except my chemo now, of course.

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