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Forums / Staying well / What do you when the strategies and coping mechanisms feel like they are not working and does medication affect your cognition

Topic: What do you when the strategies and coping mechanisms feel like they are not working and does medication affect your cognition

6 posts, 0 answered
  1. insertaname
    insertaname avatar
    69 posts
    6 September 2019

    Hi everyone

    My first question is what do you do when the strategies and coping mechanisms that have been helpful aren't working as well as you'd like?

    I am asking this question because throughout this hypomanic episode I still have that empty feeling like something is missing. I have also experienced times when all my coping strategies and activities were not effective - they were not really relaxing me and it was just a distraction. I could breathe in and breathe out and take in the surroundings but I would still find it hard to be mindful. It's like I cannot fill this void. Music was just music it was just something to hear. Cleaning was to to get the body moving rather than sit there and mope. I would have loved to have had someone like a best friend ( I don't have any friends ) to spend time playing video games or going for a walk.I'm not sure if this empty feeling will go away, usually it's replaced with a 'I don't deserved this HD' despite working hard for the university workload.

    Note: I am relatively stable and usually on the depressed side of the bipolar disorder.

    I also wanted to ask:

    Does the medication you are prescribed affect you intellectually, physically or cognitively?

    I feel it does, sometimes it makes learning new things harder, i had to write out notes, re-read things, and ask a tonne of questions to the vague answering lecturer or tutor. I find that sometimes my brain wont cognitively work as I'd desire. For something that usually takes 20 minutes to do now takes 40 minutes - i became ashamed of it and I do notice it and I start to panick. That's when I notice that I'm not right or just feeling rather flat and lethargic. In reality, i do lack the motivation to go to uni despite being a diligent and hard-working student. I sometimes can't process the length Subject Outlines with assessments and sometimes the language used is rather conflicting. I understand i need my meds but it inhibits the fast processing skills. So in the end i feel like i work hard at uni twice as harder compared to my colleagues. There are days where i couldn't even tell you what the lecture or key words were all about because even if i am looking at the presentation and lecturer I sometimes zone out.

    I look forward to your responses if you want to share.

    J

  2. smallwolf
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    smallwolf avatar
    5771 posts
    7 September 2019 in reply to insertaname
    Hi J,

    Interesting questions!

    My honest answer to the first question is that I go to the next tool in my toolbox. And probably my last resort is a word search game in my virtual hope box which only uses positive words. I may have to play it for an hour but that works for me. Some strategies I tried did not work for me, so don't bother with them. I have been in the position where music did not work for me. Walking has helped as well. There are a number of strategies I have from my psychologist so is a case of just going through them all. Ultimately it is a case of just riding it through

    On the second question, just effects my memory and reduces emotional output. Perhaps grumpy. With the medication I don't get as depressed as I would, but don't get as excited as I could either.
    1 person found this helpful
  3. quirkywords
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    quirkywords avatar
    12429 posts
    7 September 2019 in reply to insertaname

    J

    Yes thoughtful questions.


    Does the medication you are prescribed affect you intellectually, physically or cognitively?

    I have been on the same medication longer than many people on this forum have been alive!

    he way I look at it, without medication I may have ended up in a lot of trouble, as my life chaotic and I hurt people emotionally unintentionally and ruined my reputation and caused my parents and family much stress.

    Physically, I have put on weight, intellectually I am not sure as it maybe is age and not medication. cognitively I think it has helped me as my moods have stabilised . Really I know I would keep the few side effects rather than trade them for my destructive and chaotic life before I was on medication.

    This is just my experience and my opinion and I have no medical qualifications .

    I know everyone has a different experience with medication.

    Quirky

    1 person found this helpful
  4. insertaname
    insertaname avatar
    69 posts
    9 September 2019

    Thank you for your replies. I was hoping there would be more people responding to this question. I guess it takes courage to and bravery to express what is on our minds. Truth is I'm insatiable when it comes to boredom. I easily tire of everything. Either that or excuses.

    There are just days when doing anything is hard.

    J

     

  5. romantic_thi3f
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    romantic_thi3f avatar
    3085 posts
    17 September 2019 in reply to insertaname

    Hi J,

    what do you do when the strategies and coping mechanisms that have been helpful aren't working as well as you'd like?

    I find something else! There are a lot of strategies and coping mechanisms out there and I think it's a bit of trial and error to find something that works for you. I always find that it's best to brainstorm these when you are in a better place so that you're not feeling like your toolbox is empty when you need them.

    I also think that even though it's a bit contradictory, sometimes I do just 'call it a day'. There will always be days where we feel like we can't cope, and that's okay. If on your bad days, you just need to play video games or watch YouTube, that's fine too.

    Of course, the other thing is to have a chat with your therapist! They might have some ideas and things you can try.

    Does the medication you are prescribed affect you intellectually, physically or cognitively?

    I've been very lucky with the medication/s I'm on and haven't noticed anything really that significant. Having said that though, beforehand some of the medications I've tried have either made me sleep all day, vomit, hallucinate, have suicidal thoughts - you name it, and I've probably had it!

    Sidenote: there's a thread in the young people section about studying tips/motivation which you can look at, or you can search 'motivation' , 'fatigue' etc to find some other strategies there. I've struggled a lot with those things as well.

    RT

    1 person found this helpful
  6. smallwolf
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    smallwolf avatar
    5771 posts
    17 September 2019 in reply to insertaname
    Hi J,

    Not everyone who comes to the forums will look at new threads. Some may be looking for ideas themselves. Others might not have any strategies? The reasons why others might not post is endless. And yet it was only when I started getting professional help that I would find out about this and found out what worked and what didn't. It was in a book about Act that the author said ... Try this out. Doesn't work, try this. It gives the reader permission to work out what works for them. If one doesn't work that is ok. That is better than forcing a person to try something over and over and expecting a different result

    Tim

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