Tag Archives: anxiety

“Should I Go to a Psychiatrist?” Frequently Asked Questions

As I subtly implied in my post “Feel Depressed A Lot? Please Go Get Medicated, You Jerk,” I tend to think that medication is a good idea if you’ve got mood or anxiety problems. I’d like to use this post to answer some questions about the whole process, maybe allay some fears, and possibly confirm some others. It’s a mixed bag, but I think that the eventual positives outweigh the negatives.

“Why should I bother getting medicated?”

If you’re chronically down in the dumps, or if you can’t act like yourself because you’re so damned stressed out, medicine can make you feel better. In fact (and this is the main reason for me), it can make you feel more like yourself.

I recently got on a new regimen (sometimes this shit stops working quite right, or you get new goals), and suddenly I can leave my house again. I can stand talking on the phone and answering emails. I’m no longer binging on sugar or booze, and my mood is just plain better.

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Mentally Ill In The First World

I’d like to write a little rant about being sick in the head, and my experience of it so far. It’s not fun, and it’s not all that funny.

I’m writing this for the anxious, who find themselves paralyzed in ways that no one understands; for the depressed, who shrink further and further into themselves, until sometimes they disappear; for those with disordered relationships with reality, who live in the same physical world, but with vastly different perceptions. I’m writing for the soul-hurt, marginalized, stigmatized sufferers, forced to travel alongside everyone else, but burdened with invisible illness.

I’m Ian Harvey, and I have anxiety.

Whee

More anxiety than is normal. Much more. I know that it doesn’t look like it, but what exactly should it look like? I know I don’t act like it (usually), but I’m excellent at hiding abnormal behaviors. Hell, we all are. We hide and we hide, we tell white lies to ourselves and others, all for the sake of passing as normal. When you see us act out or break down, that’s because we couldn’t pass any more.

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The Anxiety Tripwire: My Intermittent Problem With People

Hi. I’m Ian Harvey, and I’ve got social anxiety.

Consider the following: You’ve spent a year of your life learning a skill, then several more honing it as a hobby. You get licensed, you’re good at what you do, and… nothing. Your brain vapor locks at the thought of actually executing your craft. Thousands of hours sunk in, and your hand drops the paintbrush, or your feet go numb when you strap on the tap shoes.

That’s where I was on Tuesday, all dressed up and no place to go. I’m a massage therapist, and I can’t bring myself to see clients.

The whole massage thing was completely out of left field in the first place. I was a weird kid in high school, with too much Dungeons and Dragons and too little self-awareness. I thought that hugs were only about the arms, and that wishing hard enough could make my crush come around and see the real me. I had hair down to my mid-back and a sweet collection of Hawaiian shirts.

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Catastrophizing: How To Worry About Nothing

Let’s talk about catastrophe. As I sit here in my bathrobe, whiling away a morning off before a meeting, I’ve already had at least 2 moments of utter shocking horror.

One: I realized that I committed to going somewhere at a time when I already have to be somewhere else. That is simply too many places for any given interval. Needless to say, I panicked, despaired, considered the possible implications for my job and livelihood, and then shoved it away to deal with later. I’ll need to fix it when I get to work later, but that doesn’t stop it from popping up over and over again in the interim, like a ghost haunting my happiness. Thanks, I had been feeling good for a few minutes, I needed a fresh wash of adrenaline.

Two: I briefly considered working on my research project for my psych MA. At this point, it is my boogieman, the half-glimpsed horror seen just as you jolt awake in a cold sweat. It is my hemorrhoid.

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