I have suffered from depression since I was 16 – so for the last 19 years of my life.

Since my original diagnosis (which has changed several times since the first time) I have had 2 breakdowns, seen two different psychiatrists (long-term), and moved NHS regions once (meaning that all therapy and medical notes took months to be transferred and caused a rather damaging break in treatment).

After my last breakdown I was prescribed Moclobemide (an outdated but well-proven MAOI medication prescribed only by mental health specialists), which I took without issue for 5 years. This was the only pill, after trying numerous others, that did anything anywhere near making me feel something resembling normal. Unfortunately, when I changed surgery practices (and localities) the new GP told me that he would not renew the prescription and that he wanted to learn more about my case. Since then he has tried me on two sleeping pills – I HATED them both, I dislike relinquishing control of my somewhat abnormal sleep pattern and after a few nights of bad tastes in my mouth and heavy heads determined that 4 hours of rubbish sleep was better than a whole night AND a ‘hangover head’ without the fun of having had an overindulgent alcoholic night before.

The last few weeks have been horrendous; mood swings, constant tearfulness, a general feeling of being inadequate, overwhelmed, and low, so I went back to the doctor with the hope of getting some help. After 20 minutes, and filling out one of those stupid questionnaire things on which my score was 22, I was told that he would refer me for therapy – the waiting list is (like most) 12-18 months. I hoped that he would give me some other offer of help…he suggested Citalopram and Prozac (the first anti-depressant I ever took which may as well have been a smartie for all the use it had). After telling him that I have already taken both of these and have found them to be no use he essentially told me that I would hear from the Local Community Mental Health Team in the next few weeks and then sent me on my way (even opening the door to let me out) without any further suggestions or offers of help. Like everyone else who suffers…what am I mant to do now? I can’t cope with work, I go home and essentially curl up on the sofa and pretend I am not there and generally feel like so much useless space.

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