Sleep Deprived, Lack Of Mental Clarity, ???

Discussion in 'Mental Health Disorders' started by Julia-C, May 23, 2011.

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  1. Julia-C

    Julia-C Well-Known Member

    I am in Nashville, TN. Today dealing with permits and other paperwork to have condos built on my former childhood home property. I have writer’s cramp from signing my name. I will be down here until tomorrow afternoon and then I will head back to Louisville. I left home at 5am this morning and the 3 hour drive to Nashville seemed to be much longer of a drive then it did last time. Coffee isn’t a suitable substitute for sleep.

    Sleep? What’s sleep? That is something that I have been thinking about a lot lately. Most of the time (by my own observation) people with emotional problems seem to sleep 10 or more hours a day. This thought has caused me to have some questions about myself. I sleep about 2 hours a day. When I say sleep I mean I lay in bed for 2 hours and sometimes doze off. I only drink coffee a few times a week and only when I get up in the morning. I have never used drugs except for weed and that was more then five years since I smoked. I have been trying to self-diagnose myself. I wouldn’t say I am scared of the dark, but I am uncomfortable in the absence of light. If that makes sense.

    I have noticed that my mind often doesn’t feel as sharp as I think it should feel. I assume that I am sleep deprived. I really don’t know what to try in order to help myself sleep better. I am beginning to think that my own faith in my own version of self help isn’t adequate. That revelation alone kind of makes me feel like a failure. I have been so use to being independent that thinking I may have to rely on someone else scares me. I mean really causes fear to enter my independent world. I am contemplating talking to a professional about my past. Other then my mom I have never told anyone in real life. I hate putting myself into such a vulnerable position, but I think is beginning to become a must. Tuesday evening I will be back home. I plan on trying to find a shrink or what ever they are called.

    Any suggestions?
  2. total eclipse

    total eclipse SF Friend Staff Alumni

    Hi i would think asking for help now will show great strength you do have. A psychiatrist is okay if you want meds but a psychologist deals with therapy and i have found one that deals with trauma
    Your lack of sleep does need to be addressed though soon a therapist can help give you skills to help you sleep better at night A psychiatrist can prescribe meds that can help as well.
    What ever method you chose to go you will get the help and support you deserve okay.
    I waited to long to get help don't you make the same mistake hugs to you
  3. TBear

    TBear Antiquities Friend

    Getting help is hard but necessary!

    I would suggest getting a therapist who specializes in trauma and dissociation. The kind of trauma you have so courageously posted about needs someone who knows what they are doing... I had someone who didn't and the results - although still helpful, have also been painful at times.

    I now have someone who was referred to me as "knowing trauma like the back of his hand" and the difference, even though I don't know him as well - is amazing - he is able to help me stay more independant and stable - within the tolerance of exploration in therapy, growth - and not become as overwhelmed by it. My last therapist meant well, we did lots of cognitive restructuring of false beliefs I had internalized, he cared deeply but I was so often overwhelmed, it made me feel too dependant on him - still miss him.

    Yet in both cases, with both therapists - I made progress.

    As far as sleep goes.... from what I understand, traumatic backgrounds cause a person to many times end up being hypervigilant and thus, the inability to sleep. I was going on 2 or 3 hours of sleep at a time when I started therapy... exhausted and still functioning non-stop. I still wake in the night with occasional flashbacks but I am sleeping more like 4 or 5 hours a night now and feeling better.

    Good luck - take care of yourself :hug:
  4. Mr Stewart

    Mr Stewart Well-Known Member

    A word on sleep deprivation: when you're sleep deprived you may not even feel tired. You'll usually feel completely in control. Sometimes the only way to identify that you're short on sleep is just a basic tally of hours you've slept in the past couple days. Two hours a night is definitely not enough.

    There's no need to go directly to mental health specialists at first if you're uncomfortable. While it may be partly a psychological issue, there could be a physical explanation as well. You should speak to a general practioner first so they can rule out the physical. Maybe give standard sleeping pills a try, see how those treat you. No rush for therapy. Plenty of time for that after a GP visit if necessary. It'll be okay. :smile:
  5. Julia-C

    Julia-C Well-Known Member

    Thanks for clearing up the difference in the two. I am thinking about a psychologist then, as I don't like taking drugs. Besides I am looking for mental clarity not zombie land. I heard a lot of sleep aids can cause a drugged out feeling. I don't know if I will, I am only thinking about it at this point. Thank you T.E.

    I have dealt with 2 hours a night for more then 16 years. I seldom feel physically tired. I do however feel emotionally tired. I am so use to wearing a mask and trying to pretend to be normal that it's really starting to drain me. If that make sense. I am glad your therapy worked/working. Thanks for the advice.

    Like I said above I have followed that sleep pattern for 16 + years. The number of nights during this time that I slept more the 6 hours at a time can be counted with my fingers. Even times I have drank alcohol till I passed out I was up 4 hours later. I have gone 41 hours before without sleep and then slept 3 hours and then up for another 24 hours. I want to avoid drugs. I doubt I would take them if given to me. This is a personal belief of mine and I don't knock people who have a different belief, but I have zero faith in the effectiveness of drugs. I only base that on my observation of my mom when she became addicted to painkillers after her car accident. She seemed to lose her ability to care about herself or me, and it eventually killed her. So that's why I am going to avoid drugs.

    Thanks for all of you guys help and advice.
  6. total eclipse

    total eclipse SF Friend Staff Alumni

    Hi again have you had your thyroid check could have hyperthyroidism giving you the ability to keep going and going worth checking out there are some meds that do not leave you with a hangover new one out now are great imovane is one of those. take care of YOU okay
  7. Julia-C

    Julia-C Well-Known Member

    I haven't but I will bring that up to the Dr. Thanks again.
  8. MoAnamCara

    MoAnamCara SF Artist

    Well, my two cents and apologies for being late off the mark here.

    I agree really with what others have said.

    Finding a therapist will be one of the hardest things, don't give up. If you can get recommendations from others, that helps. Otherwise google works! I would, though, have a list of questions you want answered when you call for that initial chat etc. You are the one in control.

    I went into therapy completely blind. I was extremely fortunate that my therpist is a good fit for me. (I did some research on them to ensure they had experience in what I was looking for). The success of therapy is dependant on the client/therapist relationship. If you aren't comfortable with the person then it will make it harder. Having a therpist with similar beliefs etc., I believe is extremely important.

    And nothing happens overnight. It took me many months to feel comfortable with this person. And months later I still haven't tackled certain things. I'm sure it'll happen eventually, but i suppose too I've other things going on right now also.

    I believe too there are those that will do therapy online, via skype or similar. If you are going to be traveling, that might be an idea for you.

    I think I've waffled enough here!

    Last thing, therapy is hard, it does feel like it makes things worse. Others who have come through the other side of therapy always state that it does get better.

    Wow - I'm off topic a bit I think... my apologies.

    Sleep is important for our bodies to rejuvenate themselves. The therapist can help with suggestions, perhaps look into other topics like yoga or meditation to help too?

  9. Julia-C

    Julia-C Well-Known Member

    Thanks for your advice and yes I think it will be hard but I am seriously contemplating this. Also you have nothing to say sorry about. lol
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