A cheerful and loving Wednesday to you. I hope that your day is treating you with understanding and kindness. I am still not in a good space but I have been reading a book that has been very enlightening for me. “Lost Connections: Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression – and the Unexcepted Solutions.” This book is penned by Award-winning journalist Johann Hari. So it is going to be one of those blogs where I look back at my past and the problems I am trying to deal with now and what this writer has to add. I am going to start with what is written by the bookstores to get the reader interested. What really causes depression and anxiety – and how can we really solve them? This is not a nice blog so if you do not want to read anything about the nasty side of people log out now and I will chat with you tomorrow.
Award-winning journalist Johann Hari suffered from depression since he was a child and started taking anti-depressants when he was a teenager. He was told that his problems were caused by a chemical imbalance in his brain. As an adult, trained in the social sciences, he began to investigate whether this was true – and he learned that almost everything we have been told about depression and anxiety is wrong. Across the world, Hari found social scientists who were uncovering evidence that depression and anxiety are not caused by a chemical imbalance in our brains. In fact, they are largely caused by key problems with the way we live today. Hari´s journey took him from a mind-blowing series of experiments in Baltimore to an Amish community in Indiana, to an uprising in Berlin. Once he had uncovered nine real causes of depression and anxiety, they led him to scientists who are discovering seven very different solutions – ones that work.
His book is wonderful and looks at the issue of depression and anxiety from a different viewpoint, for me at least, as at the age of seven I was told that I was suffering from depression (my family had a history of mental illness, including a couple of suicides), the doctor did not really listen to anything I told him and it made no difference that I was being sexually abused by a family friend, so when I told my mother when I was seven, she belted me for lying and made me say sorry to the arsehole (yes, I remember it all from four to nine) for telling fibs about him.
I was the eldest in the family, my three siblings all had psychical and mental problems, and my parents also took in two other family members – cousins, because the department of family services was going to place them in care and my mother would not allow that to happen. As I was considered the ‘grown up’ it fell to me to do all the chores. I was also very protective of my siblings and if they did something wrong I would take the blame so I would end up getting the punishment.
I was always the family problem, nothing I did was good enough, I am dyslexic (was not picked up until I was at university 28 years later) it was put down to me just being STUPID and LAZY. I, of course, rebelled big time if there was any form of social rule to be broken I did, I always defended those that others were nasty too, and as I was a child of the 60/70s I was very rebellious. Of course, my POOR parents receive so much compassion and understanding for having to tolerate such a horrid child. I still have the psychical scars from my childhood, and I will not mention the mental scarring! Now if this book is correct the scars are from my childhood. I have basically ignored that part of my anxiety and depression as it has been seen as an issue from adulthood, and has nothing to do with my childhood.
I am going to start a journal for what I can remember in my childhood, I have many remembers that are quite a clear from the age of four and if Johann Hari is correct with his theories then I may be able to fix my self up
When she was obese, men never hit on her, but when she got down to a healthy weight, for the first time in a long time, she was propositioned by a man. She fled, and right away began to eat compulsively, and she couldn’t stop.This was when Felitti thought to ask a question he hadn’t asked before. When did you start to put on weight?She thought about the question. When she was 11 years old, she said. So he asked: “Was there anything else that happened in your life when you were 11?” “Well, she replied ― that was when my grandfather began to rape me.”
Felitti spoke to all 183 people in the program and he found 55 percent had been sexually abused. It turned out many of these women had been making themselves obese for an unconscious reason: to protect themselves from the attention of men, who they believed would hurt them. Felitti had an insight: “What we had perceived as the problem ― major obesity ― was in fact, very frequently, the solution to problems that the rest of us knew nothing about.”
The results were clear: “Childhood trauma caused the risk of adult depression to explode. If you had seven categories of the traumatic event as a child, you were 3,100 percent more likely to attempt to commit suicide as an adult, and more than 4,000 percent more likely to be an injecting drug user.”
In the article, Hari reveals that he had suffered severe cruelty from an adult as a child and explores his theories on why so many people who experience violence in childhood feel the same way and why it often leads them to self-destructive behaviour.
So now I have decided that I am going to talk to both my doctor and psychologist and deal with something that I should have dealt with years ago. I have spent 52 years ignoring all the nasty behaviour because I thought that it was what I deserved and that I was to blame for the negative treatment. Now I know that the adults were irresponsible and neglected me in the worse way and I will have to do what I have done for most of my life – fix the problem and instead of looking after the others, fix me up so I can then go back out there and do what I do best – look after those who get abused!