I've hit the wall of despair

Sorry in advance, but this is going to be a fairly pessimistic post.

I've hit that point that I have named 'the wall of despair'.  I've only recently had a diagnosis, so in the past, when I hit this point, I end up circling down a dark hole that is very difficult to climb out of.

My 'ways' as they are often termed, have cost me so much over the years and it has taken a massive toll on my health and well-being at times.  My life has been spent working endlessly to fit in and navigate obstacle after obstacle.  I work hard so that I can have a successful career that helps take away the stresses of paying bills and having a roof over my head, but it all comes at a cost.  I become exhausted, overwhelmed, as well as being physically and mentally burnt out.

Recently I have had to cope with a number of changes and knee jerks at work and I don't know if it is directly related, but all aspects of life just seem totally overwhelming to me.  Every task that needs completing, bill that needs paying, food that needs prepping is one more thing pushing me closer to snapping.  The result is that I am constantly miserable, snappy, over sensitive and constantly fatigued.  My partner, bless him, tolerates it well, but it's not fair on either of us.

Today I reached that point which I try to avoid at all costs.  I am not an emotional person at all and rarely express emotion, however, today the flood gates opened where you go from nothing to feeling everything in full volume pure high definition.  This means my anxiety levels soar, my heart rate rises, I get pains in my chest and am on the verge of tears and the only way I know how to deal with it to stop me having a complete emotional breakdown, is to run away from whatever situation I am in.  As a result, I have walked out of the office today as I couldn't cope with it.

I've reached that point in my life where I am tired of constantly having to go round and round in this pattern.  I am good at my job, but me reacting in this way and making myself ill has cost me one career and I am starting to think I am hanging on to my current one by a thread.  Maybe I am not in-tune with what my body and mind is doing, but I always seem to lose when it comes to preventing hitting this stage.  When I get this bad, I become very emotional over everything, my anxiety levels go crazy and I become depressed.  I have been told countless times that life is tough, but you just have to get on with it, but when you are fighting against something that leaves you broken, how damaged do you have to become before you can fight no more?

The situation I now find myself in is feeling hopeless and vulnerable and I hate not having the answer that will solve it.

Have you had to have similar fights and what do you do to help you put the boxing gloves back on and go back into the ring?

  • Yes..I have been in similar fights..I am always relied on as the capable one,...but this coping is an outward pretence as like you I feel a tines there are far too many balls to juggle and people don't realise that although you might outwardly look like you are coping, you are not.

    is there any think your partner can do to help? Can you give him some of your responsibilities to help lessen the load before you implode like a human buckroo?

    thoughts out to you.....was off work for three months a couple of years ago when my mental and emotional elastic snapped. Try not to panic, try not to beat yourself up..,,your mind and body are telling you clearly to take it easy.

    what gives you pleasure and a sense of release...can you squeeze these things into your life a little bit more just to help rebalance you.

    big love to you.....and life can be like a boxing ring...try and give your self a chance to recover before the next round. You can't do everything and hi one is indestructible and we are all human, after all! 

    Ellie

  • Hey there, ended up with a bad bout of depression and anxiety back at the tail end of 2015. Overall my medication change wasn't THAT much but we had to split the dose of my antidepressant and I'm on the Pill to deal with the perimenopausal mood swings.

    Getting over the acute stuff was hell. Quite literally using my OCD traits to my advantage by doing the activities of daily living in very precise and predetermined ways. Accepting that I had to run with the somatic symptoms and sleep several hours in the middle of the day because of the muscle fatigue.

    My GPs biggest worry other than my sudden catestropic drop in mood was my rapid weight loss, 12 kg in 3 months.  

    I'm fortunate my family understand mental illness and I was wrapped up in their loving support. My partner kind of intellectually knew that was how things work in my family but he got to see it in full force and with him as a vital part of the network. At one point I was not that competent at decision making and my Mum made it clear he was best placed to know my likely choices.

    The thing I learned, you got to accept help. And us neurodiverse people get scared because we've been let down so often. We also struggle to know what help we need. I find Maslow's Hierarchy a good starting point. When ill I need the bottom end stuff.

    I'm not likely to ever fully recover. My strength and resilience has been compromised. That's been tough. But I have also made a commitment to regular exercise and that's been therapeutic...and cheaper than therapy

  • Hi Starbuck,

    I can empathise with that sudden anxiety nightmare! When I was younger I would go into 'hermit' mode and hide away. These days that's not so possible, and I find loud music and playing guitar whilst shouting or attempting to sing (Which is basically shouting anyway) to help. Once a month I go to a music night in my village. There are only 5 of us, so I don't get 'crowd anxiety' but it is so therapeutic to have a completely different focal point (Playing along and trying not to play the wrong thing)  compared to my everyday life of work and children. At the moment I am debating upping it to every 2 weeks as once a month is not quite enough now. 

    Hang in there! 

  • I read this earlier and it made me sad as you sound so distressed, but I had no idea how to help but I've been thinking.  Perhaps you could read this link;

    http://www.personneltoday.com/hr/manage-autism-workplace/

    It might make you feel a little more sure of your position as you seem to be rapidly losing self confidence.  I'm sure when you first posted you said that you had worked hard to get where you are and are good at your job, with a supportive manager?  I think the ignorant and wrong Occupational Health person that you were subjected to has done a lot of harm to your confidence and optimism about changes to help you keep working to your strengths whilst decreasing anxiety.  I was looking to see if there are private OH services and there are, but mainly for kids I think, also I don't see why you should have to go private but you need an advocate.

    Could you go to your GP and explain what has happened with this incompetent OH person and see if they can refer to an autism specialist for help?  I wondered if you could print any of that article and show it to your manager and HR?  Could you show them what you've written above, more or less, have you been able to explain to any one at work the extent of your distress?  Have you tried the NAS helpline?

    Objectively it doesn't sound like reasonable adaptations are being made on the strength of an unfit for purpose OH worker and if you don't get a break you are going to end up being off sick which is to no one's benefit?

    Could your partner do some of the food prep and chores to lighten the load for a while?  Hope you can feel a bit better.

    Spotty x