• late onset depression and anxiety

    Asked by kmksk on Sunday, November 27, 2011

    late onset depression and anxiety

    I was diagnosed 08/2011, had surgery, past mid-point of chemo, am doing well according to docs etc... all good news. I was feeling as ok as I could, great suppport system, loving live-n bf, yet last 2weeks or so can't stop crying, feeling anxious. I am just wondering if anyone experienced a "delayed" depression. I am seeing dr in 2 days to get help-very sad all the time.

    15 Answers from the Community

    15 answers
    • mspinkladybug's Avatar

      yeap this is sooooooooooooo common they call it post tramatic stress syndrome talk to ur dr about it also did they remove your ovaries? if so instant menopause and that is a roller coaster of emotions I had a hyster/ooph no more hormones instant insanity it felt like .. talk to ur dr about it and c if u need meds I was put on lexapro after my hyst to help with the hormonal rush.

      almost 6 years ago
    • kmksk's Avatar

      I had oophr in Aug., I guess it just took some time to for emotions to go haywire. Did the lexapro work?

      almost 6 years ago
    • abrub's Avatar

      Everyone is different on when cancer hits them in the head. Yes, it is PTSD. Even after several years of feeling fine, you may just break down again. This is a HUGE burden. Speak with your dr. See a counselor. Perhaps meds such as Lexapro will help. But don't be discouraged if the first anti-depressant tried doesn't work; we all react differently to different meds. (I can't take the SSRIs, like Lexapro, but they are wonderful for some people.) Also just having a good counselor - someone you can talk to without guilt or worry. I know that it reaches a point when you feel you are burdening your family and friends. Hopefully, they'll understand.

      Come here to vent. Lots of good ears to listen.

      almost 6 years ago
    • SunnyCloud's Avatar

      This happened to me a couple of days after being told that the cancer was gone & done with therapy. My chemo doctor said that he couldnt prescribe anything for me, that they dont deal with mental issues. I spoke with others in the medical team & they suggested that I speak with the social worker there & she referred me to a counselor. I got myself out of the depression but I am still going to see the shrink at the end of December. I figured that God didnt heal me just for me to be sad & anxious. That the bad thoughts in my head were not my own. :) Good luck & God bless.

      almost 6 years ago
    • mybirch's Avatar

      I'm so sorry about the late onset depression. When you suddenly have to fear for your life, the brain goes into safe mode, it's all about self preservation and making sure to do what the drs say...taking care of yourself. Often the idea of how the effects of cancer work with one's mental state are ignored...besides the fear. There are lots of books you can read about PTSD, or cancer related depression, 'what to expect' sort of books, and also writing to someone, sharing experience, writing an online diary of your daily feelings (I used my own email, wrote things and sent them to myself to put in a 'journal folder) which can help. A lot of people suggest antidepressents, I strongly object mainly because the side effects of them can be so horrible and getting off of them can be a long and painful process. However, antianxiety meds, while addicitive, can help calm the mind and body and make it easier to think THROUGH the fear and depression...you have had a life changing even happen in your life...there is life 'before cancer', and 'after cancer'...so much changes. Utilize friends and family, but make sure to search out support groups, books, blogs and the like. It will help. Best of luck...if you feel like writing, please do!
      Very Sincerely :)

      almost 6 years ago
    • SarahPants' Avatar

      kmksk- I too had an oophr in September and am just now dealing with all the emotions and anxiety of everything! I totally understand! My Dr. put me on daily Bupropion and Atavan for when the anxiety was extreme. These have helped a heck of a lot. They also referred me to a social worker- and that was a huge help. Sending positive vibes your way!

      almost 6 years ago
    • SunnyCloud's Avatar

      I agree with Mybirch. I quickly explained to my Facebook friends what was happening & found support groups. The more I spoke about it, the easier it got to get through the days. I agree about the meds too. Im always thankful that I dont use them even if Im supposed to. (I have bipolar)

      almost 6 years ago
    • Karen4's Avatar

      I did. It happened once all the treatment was over. Part of me was sad NOT to be going in on a regular basis-there was something comforting about being there, probably because of the other patients who were in the same boat as me! Also, my PA told me the chemo can mess with your hormones and neurotransmitters, so that was probably a factor. Then I got laid off from my job at the end of my medical leave, so that was definitely a factor. I had reached a strong partial remission, so I should have been happy, right? I found support and counseling with LIVESTRONG because I couldn't afford to pay for appointments. We've just begun, really, so I can't really say it's helped yet. I have good days and bad days, and so will you. BUT, I know how you feel-it's a very dark place and sometimes you wonder if you'll ever find your way out to the light again. It's good that you start counseling. It does help to have an objective party with whom you can discuss these feelings. My social worker has said, it's not uncommon. There will be light again, I promise. Hang in there.

      almost 6 years ago
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      Sorry your catching the emotions of the whole deal. I had Hodgkins disease twice 23 years ago, I took it very well. As a 28 year old I just said, Ok, lets get this over with, I got things to do, and we did it. Well jump ahead 20 years and I was diagnosed again, with a more agressive form of cancer, harder to control. I took it very hard. I went through the whole, why me phase, was mad at the world. And it was exactly this time of the year. I had a hard time watching everyone so happy and all chrissmassy. I pulled myself out of it. I have always been a very positive attitude type of person, and I suggest you do everything you can to keep your mind on what you want, what you love and enjoy, and off of what you don't want. Don't worry about the things you cannot control. Sounds easy, but hard to do. We are all with you in spirit here. I hope you heal well. STAY POSITIVE!!

      almost 6 years ago
    • kmksk's Avatar

      Thank you all for your supportive thoughts and suggestions. I saw my Dr. this AM and he gave me something for depression and insomnia. He believes this is due hormonally based in addition to of course, having cancer. He has me on a low dose and believes that will be all I need but was quick to assure me that I could call on him anytime if I needed more. The one thing he did say was that I am more than likely to start sleeping through the night, so here's hoping...
      Have also joined a support group and will be checking into some "Coping with..." books.
      I am grateful to have a found a forum like this-again thank you.

      almost 6 years ago
    • toml's Avatar

      This has happened to me as well. I had surgery in Aug, felt like everything was fine at first, didn't really think of it as cancer. A week ago it hit me. I had a major anxiety attach, found myself in the ER with chest pains and super bad head ache. After about 6 hours of testing they found nothing wrong. The doctor told me I was having an anxiety attack and they gave me Atavan in the IV and I calmed down. He gave me a small prescription and told me to go find a counselor to talk to. I think a lot of my issue is that since I got cancer I now see a different world. A couple of my friends recently died of their cancer and another has been given a date. This plays on my mind. I am supposedly cancer free right now, last psa was 0.05, but I still can't get passed it.

      almost 6 years ago
    • digger6218's Avatar

      I am finished with reconstruction. NO chemo or radiation. Will have a baseline Mri in 10 days. So I I thought I should be happy. And thru it all I was calm. Now I'm hit woth mild anxiety and getting weepy. No sad thoughts, just and emotional mess. I will speak to my Dr. This was so unexpected. Never thought of yhis related to Post Traumatic Syndrome. Thanks for the posts as it's helped me too.

      over 5 years ago
    • lisaepstein's Avatar

      Even though my cancer was caught so early and I am fine I am sooo depressed. That would Cancer stays on my mine all day.

      about 5 years ago
    • SunnyDay's Avatar

      I hope everything you tried has worked for you. I was so depressed with my diagnosis of vulvar cancer that I refused to make the surgery appointment and just thought I would die right away. But my daughter who had gone with me told me the Dr. Had said it would be a long painful road if I didn't have surgery so I called the nurse and scheduled the surgery. I also had gone to my Gyno Dr. She referred me to crisis hotline and a social worker came to see me and suggested I see a shrink. I went to a local church that was having a group on grieving. Following the book "Good Greif" I read the book and realized my issue was Greif not depression. The book has helped so much. It is very short I recommend to everyone it explains the ten steps of Greif and how to process them. Every emotion I was having was natural (and this too shall pass) since I read the book I no longer want to die right away. I will let go and let God. And have this Blog for understanding and support.

      about 5 years ago
    • Jeana1975's Avatar

      I have noticed more and more depression seeping into my concrete resolve like a jack hammer. It doesn't help that my perception of others has changed so drastically, and I notice I am more sensitive to attitudes and moods. I've always been keen to these things, but it's worse now...my Dad gets really short tempered and mean toward me and I don't understand why. This mistreatment from my only surviving parent (Mom died of cancer 2 years ago April) is disheartening and stressful. No, it's downright heartbreaking. In some aspects he's supportive, but most of the time it's all about him and God forbid I need him or need to talk about the major changes my body just underwent during surgery. I wish my Mom were alive, because she'd understand and she'd know what to say. I feel like I'm so alone in mourning the loss of my reproductive system at my age. I've never had children, and I never will. I'm sure my Dad is afraid, because I'm all he has left, but why take those feelings out on me, as if I don't have enough to deal with already? There are days I just want to give up, I get so overwhelmed with sorrow and hopelessness. It's like a huge void that I don't know how to fill. I keep telling myself that things will be better once I get back to work. For now, I'm forcing myself to observe my crafts...because they're like therapy for me. I really thought I'd be able to hold it together longer than this, but I suppose this is natural and I shouldn't think I'm going crazy...or should I?

      about 5 years ago

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