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Date of last update: 8/24/2017.

Forum Name: Psychiatric Topics

Question: Depression? Confidence/Identity Crisis? Very Scared

 steveor21 - Fri Dec 04, 2009 12:22 pm


I am a 24 year old male and have had a couple different bouts of depression over the past 3 years or so. Each time it is the same- I start to feel depressed, withdraw from friends, become very introverted, lose ability to concentrate, lose interest in everything, and become obsessed with researching on the web and diagnosing myself with a 100 different illnesses. I have diagnosed myself with depression, social anxiety disorder, dimentia, lost personality disorder, dysthimia, etc.
Prior to this, I had a very productive and promising life. I was always good humored, excelled in school, and played football, basketball, and baseball since I was old enough to walk. I have had a good social life, and have made many great friends along the way. I had a strong passion for life and a very positive outlook. I had a thirst for knowledge and a lot of confidence and happiness.
Wow, how the picture has changed. I was laid off from my first job out of college back in May, and at the time I thought "this is fine. 6 weeks of paid vacation, and i can find another job which i like even more." I found another job very quickly, and have been working in the accounting department of a large public company for the past 5 months. I barely talk at all when Im at work. I have nothing to say, and no confidence at all. I feel like everyone thinks Im a weirdo because of this. Everytime I go to speak, my voice gets real shaky and weak, and the words that come out make NO sense. Im losing my mind. If you were to ask me my name I would probably hesitate and then say "Steve, I think. right?" I cant even assert that my name is Steve. This has unfortunately spilled over into every aspect of my life, and I have completely withdrawn from family and friends. I don't know who I am anymore, and can't live as this empty, weak, unenthusiastic, personality-less person. Inside I am screaming and wanting to punch a hole through a wall, but on the outside Im paralyzed and stagnant. WHAT DO I DO??? I need an outlet. I tried playing basketball the other night but found myself very disoriented and wanting to just hide behind a defender and not touch the ball. I feel like a wimp. A loser. Help. What could be the problem? Is it correctable?
 Faye Lang, RN, MSW - Wed Dec 30, 2009 7:06 pm

Hello Steveor21,

What a difficult time you are having! Each episode seems to create the next one. You are trying to take positive steps on your own, and it's not working very well. There are some psychiatric issues that may first show up in a person's early 20s, and you need to be assessed for them. If you are comfortable doing so, keep a journal of your feelings as you go through each day, and see if there are any particular triggers. Make an appointment with a qualified psychologist or psychiatrist as soon as you are able to do so. Psychological testing would likely help clarify any diagnosis that exists. Share your journal with the psychologist or psychiatrist. If self-harm becomes attractive to you, call the local mental health agency immediately. Meanwhile, you are to be commended for finding and keeping the new job. The steps I've discussed above should help you find optimal function and success in maintaining your job.

Best of luck to you.

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