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Holiday Depression Holiday Depression

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Unread 10-03-2005, 01:08 PM
Holiday Depression

September 1st, I walked into a Rite Aide and found Halloween decorations. Yikes! I thought at first, then I felt the depression come on. When I was a kid I loved the holidays. Now it's the darkest time of the year for me. It's not till after the new year that I start coming out of it. I've read that a lot of people feel this. Apparently, the during the holiday's there are more suicides than any other time.

I just started a stronger medication for my depression, I sure hope it works. I'd like to, if not enjoy the holiday's, at least not sob through them. Happy Holiday's!

Oh, and I just remembered that my first hysterectomy anniversary is 12/20. Yep, I'm going to be in the mood to celebrate. Don't get me wrong, I've never felt better! I'm just concerned I may fall apart like I did last year. Dang it!
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Unread 10-03-2005, 08:47 PM
Holiday Depression

Yes, the holidays can be hard for some of us, but if we try to think of the positive and what makes us happy, then we have a good chance of getting through them and maybe even having a great time.

Thinking of you and hoping you do just great this holiday season.

Unread 10-04-2005, 08:23 AM
Holiday Depression

You may also be suffering from SAD (bad acronym, I know -- but it stands for Seasonal Affectional Disorder), which relates to the amount of sunlight you're exposed to during the winter months. This is a real physical problem, and it is treatable.

Just a thought. I know the holiday season also has a huge psychological impact on people, and putting your hysterversary in the mix doesn't help, either.

I have faith in you and I believe you can get through this.
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Unread 10-05-2005, 09:40 AM
Holiday Depression

Along with all the autumn Holidays, just the whole atmosphere of fall is hard on you emotionally. All the glorious colors of summer turn brown and die "Spring is birth," "Autumn is death." A sad fact of life. It's probably not as bad in California, since the changing of the seasons isn't quiet so drastic, as it is here in Minnesota. I know that I've felt the sadness of fall my whole life. It doesn't help that my husband died in the fall. But even without that, I get sad when the leaves fall and the flowers die, and I know that winter is coming.

What's really odd is that October with it's crisp clean air and brilliant blue sky, is my favorite time of year.

Autumn always seems a time for reflection, taking trips down memory lane. Perhaps it's the Holidays, or that it is such a strong physical reminder that another year has passed.

I send you the very best wishes through this autumn and it's holidays.
Unread 10-18-2005, 06:23 PM
Holiday Depression

Ah, Kindred,
I think you are not alone in the fact that the holidays can bring a feeling of loss at times that you just can't put your finger on or put into words. But, I think you are on the right path by really paying attention and being pro-active regarding your medications for depression. I read your post several days ago and thought about it a two days ago when I went into the store and saw the cutest tiny Halloween outfits and it brought a little pang of sadness to me, and I understood what you meant. Holidays can be full of stress and at the same time, a time of joy. I choose to look at them as a marker, when one wasn't so good, etc. I remember that time and I try to re-create new traditions that make me feel whole and a part of things. Find something that makes you feel alive and focus on that. And, never worry about being a strong enough person to express yourself, I consider that a brave person who can confront her fears and find ways to get around them. You know, if the door is locked and closed, look for that window that is open and waiting for you!! You take care and sending big hugs your way!!
Unread 10-19-2005, 06:44 AM
Holiday Depression

by holidays is this when you have thanks giving over there?
Unread 10-19-2005, 11:24 AM
Holiday Depression

I know what you mean- Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas carry a 1-2-3 punch of kids, abundance and family that can knockout those of us who are mourning the lack of a family.

I really wanted to be THE MOM- making the cute Halloween and Christmas pageant costumes and taking the little one's hands in the dark.

And Thanksgiving is the time when you want your family to gather round the laden table. When you don't have kids you're always the fifth wheel at someone else's table because a Thanksgiving feast for one or two can seem ridiculous.

Every year we spend Christmas with DH's parents, who are lovely but- it's dinners out in fancy restaurants and no homey coziness. No Santa and no cookies left out etc.

I don't want to be a humbug but it's awfully tempting -
So I'm taking charge!-
I will be the Auntie instead and mother vicariously through my sisters' kids. My sisters are sometimes really too busy to do special things for their kids. I will get to have all the fun without the day to day spilled milk etc.

So this year I'm going to make special Halloween treats for the neighborhood kids, cook Thanksgiving at my house and invite all my friends without kids or who are single AND my family. For Christmas we'll do a box for a single-mother with kids. And... I'm still a big kid so I'll leave the cookies out for Santa.
Last year DH and I donated blood on New Year's Eve and we have agreed to make it a tradition.

I am slowly learning to trade my former Holiday expectations for other meaningful expressions of who I am.
I am thinking that I will not really be less of a mother if I can choose to mother others.
Maybe I couldn't have kids but I can still have a full life.
Unread 10-19-2005, 12:52 PM
Holiday Depression

I have had personal experience with SAD. I have learned to make myself get out in the sun every day. In the winter I change my light bulbs so that they simulate sunlight. Keep the curtains open as much as possible and let in the sunlight. This is a good time to start a project that will keep you busy. Start your holiday shopping early and avoid stress. This will be our first Christmas without my father in law who was always our family santa. He loved to give and searched for the perfect present, hated to receive and never wanted anything for himself. When he was asked what he wanted for Christmas he always said...socks and underwear. When he died in January, my mother in law took 25 pair of socks, still in the package out of his drawer. He never worre them! He was so funny. Since we live 250 miles away we talked a lot but visits only came every couple of months. Thanksgiving, was the last time he was at my house. We are looking for a way to celebrate this year that will be something different, but still honor the memory of him.
Unread 10-19-2005, 01:51 PM
Holiday Depression

I *hate* the holidays! And I think I actually have the opposite of Seasonal Affective Disorder. I love cloudy, rainy, foggy days and storms. I live in sunny Calif (I'm a native--probably wouldn't have chosen to live here), and I find myself retreating from the sun. Too much sun feels assualtive to me.

I get *very* depressed every year at around this time. I attribute it to my broken up family of origin. My parents divorced when I was young, and I ended up going to *so* many holiday gatherings with tons of step-relatives. Having to buy presents for step -neices and nephews whose names and ages I couldn't remember. Very alienating! I used to have to go to Thanksgiving Dinner at my step-brother's house, and my step-father's first wife was always there. She hated my mother for stealing her husband from her. She'd always pretend that she didn't know who I was. To make matters worse, my father ended up marrying my mother's old best friend.

Also, I'm the black sheep of the family in that I am more sensitive than the rest. I dared to move 2 hours away from them and was required to go down for every holiday. I remember spending one Thanksgiving dinner in a completely dark room with my 6 month old DD--she couldn't handle all the stimulation and cried non-stop unless I took her someplace quiet. I ended up in a room that's only light was too bright so I had to turn it off. I asked my DH to bring me a candle and a piece of pumpkin pie--he was having such a nice time finally being able to relax that he forgot about me. My kids both hated the long car rides and cried a lot of the way. My sister once said to me "Can't you just *make* them stop crying?!" Anyway, they cut me no slack, so I finally decided to stop busting my and my family's butts to go to gatherings that were unpleasant anyway! And now everyone's *really* mad at me!

I'm trying sooooo hard to make new traditions for my own family. I want my kids to enjoy the holidays and I feel awful that I might be ruining it for them. But, the old demons are *very* hard to fight! And I already see a psychiatrist for meds and a therapist for depression and anxiety.

My DS's birthday is January 2nd, so we try to focus on that. It's something to look forward to and it also marks the end of the season. We have a good reason to take down all the holiday stuff--to make sure he feels his day is special.

Sorry so long! Kindred, I can totally relate to what you are saying. Thanks for starting this post.


erica.j...Halloween is Oct 31 and Thanksgiving is always the last Thursday in November. But, all the Christmas stuff is already out in the stores, and we seem to get a new Christmas catalogue everyday in the mail!
Unread 10-19-2005, 04:35 PM
Holiday Depression

The holidays start with Halloween (10/31), then Thanksgiving (last Thursday in Nov.), goes through Christmas, and ends with New Years.

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