I am a 19 year old female. I was diagnosed with depression and OCD at the age of 13 but believe I have probably had it since I was 11. I was on medication for it from the age of 13 to 16 but have not been on since. I haven't had surgeries. The only people in my family with depression are extended family. I am not on any medicatoin.
I have always struggled with my emotions since I got my period when I was 11. It became really bad late middle school and early high school and then cleared up some. I became stable enough to come off medication and therapy but I still continued to struggle with my emotions and thoughts. My psychiatrist believed that my depression was probably linked to seasons (Jan-April) but never confirmed it. This year I began college and in the Spring fell into the darkest depression I have had since I got off medication but did not return to medication (perhaps part of the seasonal depression). After April my mood elevated a lot and the effects were not as paralyzing, yet, the emotions and thoughts never completely left. My emotions are now at a point where I can function and get through the days doing my normal routine and without crying, but my mind is still very dark (I just push through and hide it). I have been trying to track my emotions somewhat this summer and have realized that the week before my period, the week of, and the week after are very dark and then the next week I am completely fine. This has happened a few months in a row now. Plus, my depression initially started when my period started. Could my mood and emotions be tied to my period? Is that very abnormal for "pms" or the emotional downs be three weeks long? My mood is and is not like the clinical depression that I have experienced in my life. For example, my emotions are very blue, anxious, and angry. I feel overwhelmed and do not want to do any of thet hings I normally like to do. I want to drop out of my activities/hobbies, quit college, and avoid friends. Somedays my eating habits go from one extreme to the other (I eat everything or nothing), but not always. Same with sleep-- sometimes my thoughts and emotions make me want to stay in bed all day, but u nlike with depression I can force myself out of bed. Unlike depression, I can force myself to do the things I need to do, but I dread every moment of it and have to fight the emotions constantly. I have pushed through it the past 7 or 8 years most of the time, but I am getting sick of wasting most of my weeks "just making it" and "pushing through." I want to enjoy my life more than one week a month and so am trying to figure out what is going on. Have you ever heard of pms like this? Is it more? What kind of tests could possibly be used? Would something like the pill help this? What should I explore as options for explanations/treatments of this cycle? Any ideas/suggestions? Thank you!!