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Depressed
 
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Quote Depressed Replybullet Topic: Depression
    Posted: 11 November 2005 at 9:08pm

I've come to the conclusion I am depressed.  It's been a problem for quite a few years.  I think it is because of certain events in my life which were very devastating.  In sum, my father left me when I was six, my fiance left me four years ago and a new woman I fancied, just recently rejected me.  I guess I'm really sensitive and rejection has taken its toll on me.

I'm pursuing a degree in medicine so I've self-diagnosed.  I don't really enjoy life very much and I feel incredibly guilty because I know a Muslim isn't supposed to be like that.  I haven't had suicidal ideation, however, I've sort of wished for death, but it makes me feel worse because I know Muslims aren't supposed to do that.

I've been feeling miserable for about a year, to the point where it's affecting my work so I have postponed med school.  I have also stopped praying.  I only have my mother but she's old and doesn't understand.

My feelings initially translated into hatred towards women, however, it's translated into hatred towards everyone.  I get this feeling that people just use me and when they've had what they want, they just leave me.  I used to feel empathy towards my patients, but I look at every person with contempt now, so I've put my career on hiatus. 

One of my colleagues has suggested that I take antidepressants, however, I am strongly against antidepressants.  What I am afraid of is that if I continue this behaviour, I will not be worthy in the sight of Allah for not praying and for not contributing to society etc.  I've also lost all interest in marriage and interest in all women(don't worry I'm not gay :P). 

I have a strong feeling I will feel like this for quite a while.  What is the Islamic thing to do?  Do I take antidepressants and become a zombie, numbing my senses?  Or shoud I be patient and ride this thing out?  What if it takes me a decade to snap out of this?  What if I die in this state of not being a good Muslim?  Please help.    



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rami
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Quote rami Replybullet Posted: 11 November 2005 at 9:42pm
Bi ismillahir rahmanir raheem

assalamu alaikum br

many of us have felt this at some point in our life, sometimes we expect things and put our hope into them so when they dont materialise or they dont satisfy us like we imagined we begin to feel down and depressed.

this problem comes from enjoying and desiring to much that u get used to feeling up and are not used to feeling balanced. You need to exrcise self control over what you do in life and what ever it is you do to find joy. Whether it is music, food, reading anything the medium is not important the effect is the same.

Prayer is not a deed to be done it is a cure for many of the issues, it helps ease stress and anxiety you need to attempt it in a sincere way and not approach it as a task. Remember Allah gives according to your intention and intention is in the heart not simply the mind.

You have to be carful how you approach each task. When you say i intend to be sincere but your heart is not in reality sincere then the act is done in a delusional manner ie not facing the reality that your heart is not there.

If you say i will "try" to be sincere in this act (eg prayer) then the intention behind the act is more realistic and reasnoble and allah will help you in the task and increase you more in sincerity.

it takes time depending on the habits you have formed in your life,  it is about the state of the heart. Allah in the Quran says he does not look at our deeds but what is in our hearts and he gives according to that.


Edited by rami
Rasul Allah (sallah llahu alaihi wa sallam) said: "Whoever knows himself, knows his Lord" and whoever knows his Lord has been given His gnosis and nearness.
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Angel
 
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Quote Angel Replybullet Posted: 12 November 2005 at 9:13pm

Have you been to a doctor, its not best to self diagnosed  getting a 2nd and 3rd opinion is good.

Perhaps you can see and talk to a councilsor, that's what they are there for  

Or you can write down your feelings and thoughts in a journal, getting your feelings out is good as you don't hold onto them inside.

The question to be answered is: why do you feel that people use you? (You don't have to answer here, its just a private question for you) And also what did you feel when your dad left you? the way you felt can also affect how you are in later in life.

Praying, Rami is right, Praying is also a form of mediatation.

Find something that interest you and do them, its no point in doing something that you are not happy with because pushing to do that when your not happy can only furthur exberate your depression. The point here is to get yourself out of the depression, not stay in, so doing something that you have interest in and it doesn't have to be great, will help you.

I don't really enjoy life very much and I feel incredibly guilty because I know a Muslim isn't supposed to be like that. 

May I ask who say that ? A muslim isn't supposed to be like that. Sounds like a guilt trip layed on by somebody who doesn't know any better or about depression!

DO not feel guilty because you feel depressed or that you should be enjoying life. That only makes the situation more worse!

Everyone feels depressed about something in their life, some people are worse and some people are not, and there are different kinds of depression (and being a med student that is something you shold know ;-) ) and does not mean that you should be guilty about it. There is no hard or fast rules saying that you should be enjoying life every second of the day.

Work on what is making you depressed and start from there to heal yourself.  

~ Our feet are earthbound, but our hearts and our minds have wings ~
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Depressed
 
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Quote Depressed Replybullet Posted: 13 November 2005 at 3:26am

Thank you for your responses. It makes me feel somewhat better that you two actually care about a person who you've never seen before. 

I've actually seen a psychiatrist and she's offered me anti-depressants.  I don't like talking to her because she's not offering me advice from a Muslim perspective and she's putting pressure on me to take drugs. 

I feel that people have used me because as I said my father left when I was younger.  He's found out from family members that I am going to be a doctor so recently he's been asking me to borrow money.  I've given him some money because he said he was going to use it to buy my sister a new computer, but he lied and I haven't heard from him in weeks.

Also with regard to my ex-fiance.  She was only with me because she thought I was going to be a doctor.  When I first applied to medical school, I got rejected and I was really upset.  She left me the same day I got rejected...coincidence?  I think not. 

The recent girl I was with was only with me because...this sounds a bit immodest, I am a pretty funny guy.  I make a lot of jokes, however, this is just a mask, because I am a miserable person inside.  But she just wanted to be with me because of that and when I broached the subject of something beyond friendship she stopped talking to me.  I know that's happened to lots of ppl, but it's been compounded by my experience with my fiance. 

I know I have no right to complain about my life, because I have it a lot better than most ppl in the world.  However, I want to snap out of this funk so I can be motivated to make the world a better place for those ppl.  I know it sounds corny, but I want to perform good deeds so I can go to Junnah.  But I'm just really upset and it's hindering this ability to at least attempt to perform those good deeds and my ability to pray.  You know what I mean?

Maybe this is a question that only I can answer, but the advice from both of you is very much appreciated and has caused me to see things differently

Jazak-allah  

 

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Nausheen
 
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Quote Nausheen Replybullet Posted: 13 November 2005 at 6:36am

Auzubillahi minash shaitan ir rajeem,

Bismillah ir rahman ir rahim,

A shrink will always be of the opinion that one should go on drugs if depressed. If this person is not a muslim, or a believer of spiritual powers, may not support anything other than a routine treatment.

You are a med student so must have some idea how serotonin plays a role in mood elevation. During depression serotonin is depleted and it needs to be replenished otherwise the brain chemistry will never get back to normal. However it is not always true, that one needs chemical triggers (drugs) for the release of serotonin.

If your depression is mild, you CAN treat it yourself ... yes, without depending on drugs.

A few things you can do is read about depression. try and find out how the brain chemistry works and what one can do to fight it. Assess yourself, find the reasons that make you depressed - ie find your triggers, and do not run away from them, instead deal with them.

Below is a link I found quite promising.

http://www.anxiety-and-depression-solutions.com/articles/011 905depressionrealcure.htm

Last but not the least, the best way to deal with depression is thru religion. I can understand that a stage comes when people run away from prayers, and other religious activities. This is because of your condition, and not something inherent in you. Try to change a few things around yourself, constantly reminding yourself that Allah will heal and you will find yourself turning back to prayers slowly. If you cannot bring yourself to a point to do all five prayers in a day, do one. Pick one time in which you feel best in spirits, and try to offer only the fard portions of that prayer. Do it with consistency. Gradually you will find yourself falling into the habit, then move on to the next prayer.

Find a friend in your local mosque, who you can share your problem with. Spend some time with him, and see if there are any topics of discussion on spirituality in religion that interest both of you, and that which can give you some peace of mind.

Maa salaama,

Nausheen 



Edited by Nausheen
Wanu nazzilu minal Qurani ma huwa
Shafaa un wa rahmatun lil mo'mineena
wa la yaziduzzalimeena illa khasara.
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Quote fatima Replybullet Posted: 13 November 2005 at 7:01am

bismillah irrahman irrahim

assalamu alaikum

On the authority of Abu Huraira (may Allah be pleased with him), who said that Prophet Muhammad (may Allah's blessings and peace be upon him) said: Allah swt the Almighty says:

I am as My servant thinks I am. I am with him when he makes mention of Me. If he makes mention of Me to Himself, I make mention of him to Myself; and if he makes mention of Me in an assembly, I make mention of him in an assembly better than it. And if he draws near to Me a hand's span, I draw near to him an arm's length; and if he draws near to Me an arm's length, I draw near to him a fathom's length. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him at speed. (Bukhari, Muslim, Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah)

I absolutely love this hadith qudsi, as one of the brothers mentioned that every1 feels some depression in their life and alhamdulillah i hav tasted the truth of this hadith, pray with total sincerity knowin that Allah swt has knowledge of every thing and 'Verily, His command, when He intends a thing, is only that He says to it, "BE!" and it is!'' SubhanAllah its up to us to be one of our lord's ppl, know that every matter is a rehma for a believer alhamdulillah either its a way to elevate ur place with ur lord or its washing away some of the past mistakes thats been made so both way a good thing.  Involve urself in acquiring knowledge of deen n ur lord, try to read tafsir every day inshaAllah that will give u peace and tranquility.  it is not possible to do every thing right every time but try ur best to deal with things in a way u think will please ur lord, knows he knows the secrets in breast of men, and if something goes wrong ask for forgiveness straight away with total sincerity n humility. just wanted to finish with another hadith but cant find it at the moment but inshaAllah il tell u the meaning. 

Sayyidina Muhammad saw said to one of the sahabi to take Allah swt as a helper and protector when he needs one and know that if the whole world gathers to benefit u they cant and if they all gather to harm u they are not able unless Allah swt wills it.  so inshaAllah keep ur dealings according to what pleases ur lord n inshaAllah Allah swt will make things better for u.

and a muslim is the one who likes for his fellow muslim what he likes for himself so its not knowing some1 to make u care for them.(just to clarify b4 some1 minds me saying that, a muslim is also suppose to immitate qualities of his lord ie being kind and mercifull to every1 but its truth alhamdulillah us muslims have another bond on a higher level than humanity)

wassalam

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Quote AllahisGreat Replybullet Posted: 13 November 2005 at 12:42pm
Depressed I had a real problem with depression until the last couple of years. Sometimes you have to just have to out grow it. That is what I did. A lot of times when you are young you don't have any perspective. This doesn't come until you are in your 30's. Plus you have to force yourself to remember all the good things that have happened to you. You have to draw strength from all the positive experiences when you are having some not so good times in your life. You also have to have your own personal victory file. No matter what kind of geek you might be everyone rises above the storm every now and then. Regarding your fiance this is a situation which only time will heal. Right now the wounds are fresh. However as time passes the smoke will clear. She won't seem so perfect to you anymore. You will remember all of her bad qualities, all the ways that she didn't measure up, and all the times she betrayed you. Perhaps one day from now she will be begging for you back and think of how much fun you will have jerking her around and playing with her emotions. As for the latest love gone wrong you really don't know why this lady jetted. You really don't know what is going with her internally from the surface. Personally sometimes I have just too much going on to be confined to a romantic relationship. As for the loss of your father as you go out into the world in your career you may one day meet a man who will be like a father to you which will make your loss more bearable. As for being rejected from medical school it is so difficult to gain entrance. I would apply as many times as possible. Try to beef up your application for next time. Study harder for a better score on the MCAT. Try to take some more classes that will look good on the application and/or get a better bachelor degree to improve your chances for admission into medical school. Don't give up too soon. Fall down 7 times get up 8.

Edited by AllahisGreat
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Quote Angel Replybullet Posted: 13 November 2005 at 5:57pm
Originally posted by Depressed

Thank you for your responses. It makes me feel somewhat better that you two actually care about a person who you've never seen before. 

but the advice from both of you is very much appreciated and has caused me to see things differently

You're Welcome

Have you looked into alternative therapies, these will deal with the hole of the body mind and spirit all in one as well as councilsor who are into naturally therapies/solutions, instead of just one area like the psychiatrist you been to and prescribing drugs, as if that is the only way to deal with depression, drugs should be the utmost last resort!  

I go to an health centre that deals with alternative therapies, (I have been to an homeopathy therapiests who helped me with a few things and one of them was feeling depressed.) These treatment treat the person individually as not all medications are for all people neither are the same doses. People require different doses according to their needs. I have below given you some info from there: {{and one thing, they don't put pressure on you}}

Psychological counselling can be of assistance at times when you are experiencing emotional distress, or when life is offering you greater challenges, or more generally to help you enhance you self awareness and help you gain greater personal satisfaction in life. 

Over a number of weekly sessions, through talking with a trained counselor, new perspectives or understandings can occur, new strategies for addressing life issues can emerge and you can be strengthened in the use of your own abilities.

 

Naturopathy deals with internal health problems, metabolic disorders and imbalances through treatment of the whole person.  In general, a wide range of diagnostic techniques are employed to assess causative factors, with treatment that may involve dietary changes, herbal medicines, homeopathy or nutritional supplements.  All treatments are finely tuned to each individual to rebalance the natural rhythms of the body.

[the therapists here was working at the centre since 1990 until she just moved recently interstate].  [She] uses herbs as her main modality but utilises homeopathy, dietary and lifestyle advice, flower essences and vitamin and mineral therapy, depending on what is required to meet one's health requirements. 

 

Massage offers you relief from pain and chronic tension through relaxation techniques, aromatherapy, deeper therapeutic massage, reflexology or remedial massage.  These techniques increase your flexibility and mobility and encourage energy to flow to your internal organs, while stimulating circulation of blood and lymph which helps eliminate wastes.  Massage can relieve tension, cramps, muscular aches and pains, joint stiffness, fatigue, menstral cycle problems and the stress of pregnancy.  It is beneficial for general well-being, plus you'll feel totally pampered.

 

Chiropractic emphasises the structural integrity of your body.  The chiropractor deals with health disorders related to the spine and the associated nerves which extend from it to all parts of your body. 

Often, seemingly unrelated pain can be traced to a simple spinal problem.  Treatment can include massage, gentle manual adjustments, postural advice and referral where appropriate.  The chiropractor also provides preventative measures against musculo-skeletal disorders.

[here you don’t necessarily have to go because you have a bad back, I go for back, shoulder and neck massage, as I have tension there and I go when I feel the need to and when I feel down I go and afterwards I feel good again, The doctor here doesn’t do anything I don’t want done or feel uncomfortable with.]

 

Acupuncture is part of the comprehensive tradition of Chinese Medicine and can be used either by itself, or combined with massage treatment or herbal formulas.  The needles are pre-sterilized, individually packaged and as fine as a hair. 

Does it hurt?  Since the needles are so fine the experience is similar to a small insect bite, then some tingling or a gentle pulsing, but be assured that treatments are tailored to each individual and paced to suit your comfort level.  Acupuncture is often used to complement other forms of treatment such as Chiropractic or Western Medicine.

These are just a few and what is offered at my place where I go, there are more natural therapies, do your research.

Aromatherapy is good, and you can get candles and oil essence to burn to help elivate feeling down. You could burn these while doing your prayers, that will be a good combination.

Also if you think your diet and exercise needs to be adjusted, do so, look into foods that will benefit you and help, perhaps you are lacking in certain areas (only you would know this). Doing some form of sports, like swimming, cycling, gym can help and at the same time get fit  and can be a really good stress buster  hey your a med student perhaps going into golf could be the answer

There many ways to help depression and not resort to drugs, I don't like drugs for that either. Once I went to the doctor to get time out and for depression, its 3 months, I wanted time to help myself and knew what to do and taking drugs was definitely not one of them. But the doctor wouldn't give me the time out, because I wasn't prepared to take the description but I soon agreed to it, she gave me the prescription but I never got it filled out, but I got my 3 months time out to help my self  and I never went back.

 

I know this maybe hard but don't worry about anybody else, don't worry about your father about the money, I know its nice to help your parents and it can be looked upon as a duty, but if he only going to use you for money abuse it, then he has no right to your help.

 

Just concentrate on yourself and getting better, you need to take care of yourself. My philosophy is that if I'm not upto my optium and my health is not good, how am I going to be of benefit to other people or help them?! My health and wellbeing come first without it I'm not good to other people. Simple really  But it is also true that in some instances helping others will also help you.

 

I wish you luck, and as you can see there are many ways of dealing with depression.



Edited by Angel
~ Our feet are earthbound, but our hearts and our minds have wings ~
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