Understanding and beating depression

You may be feeling really low and finding it hard to deal with the challenges of life. Sometimes talking to family or friends can help and you may be lucky enough to discover that talking about it with someone you know is all you need to do in order to feel better. However, you may find instead that people don't understand your problem. You may get told to "pull yourself together" or to "snap out of it" or you may get other responses that seem to miss the problem or trivialise your experience. Sounds familiar? Try psychotherapy with me. Here is a summary of my work with one client, who I will call "Melvin" (removing or changing any identifying details for the sake of confidentiality).  

After feeling low for 2 years and experiencing little relief from anti-depressant medicine, Melvin sought my help. In psychotherapy, he learned that his withdrawal was a way of protecting himself from the fear of being hurt. This was a defence he'd discovered as a child protecting himself against an aggressive step-father. When he realised that he didn't need that defence any more, he started to explore new ways of being. Melvin had always been interested in climbing but had previously steered away from opportunities to participate in climbing activities with other people. While working with me, he made the decision to join a climbing club. With new friends and a new way to explore his interest in climbing, Melvin started to feel more motivated and engaged with life. With my support, Melvin left the depression and the anti-depressants behind.

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© Gill Sweeting