Passing on the Tradition

mouth-pillWhat says love more than sharing? This year, the rest of the family has jumped into the anxiety and depression pool. It started with my wife who, quite out of the blue, starting having panic attacks. They are so disruptive she has largely stopped driving, except for short distances and never on a freeway. Things got so bad, she finally went to a psychologist who she is working with weekly. The psychologist has her on some medicine that controls the panic attacks, but is not a full anti-depressant. She is working on transitioning her to one, but my wife is so sensitive to medication, finding one that doesn’t create a reaction has been challenging. We are now trying Lexapro! Oh yes, Lexapro, my old friend. My wife’s problems are different than mine as I never had panic attacks. I kind of understand what she is going through but not really. I don’t know what a full blown panic attack feels like.

More like what I went through is my teenage daughter. She is a teenage girl, so there is always drama, but we realized there is something more going on. She has general anxiety that has grown into depression. Hers is not as deep and profound as what I had, but we caught it early. She will soon start with a psychologist as well and possibly get some pharmaceutical help.

Not to be left out of the fun, my 8 year old daughter also has anxiety and what they are called selective mutism. She does not have any depression and no real panic attacks, but her general background anxiety is fairly high and certain situations can send her into a meltdown. She has been getting basic occupational therapy, but needs to move to a child psychologist.

Virtually the whole family is having psychological issues. At this time, I am the most stable among us. This whole period has been incredibly challenging and difficult for us all. The level of stress for me has been very high and I am proud of myself for keeping it together, for the most part. It’s always a running battle with anxiety and depression for me. Right now, I’m winning. Now, I need to shepherd my family through the dark passage.