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31 Jul 2008
My husband died two years ago. I nursed him through his illness. Even after all this time I don’ t know what to do with myself when I’ m not at work. In the morning I wait for the evening, just to be able to go to bed and sleep. The psychiatrist, who treats me for Bipolar disorder, said I should go out and do things. Meet people. I don’ t want to see anyone and I don’ t want to do anything. I’ m interested in nothing. I find it difficult to concentrate on my job. I’ m scared and paranoid all the time. I want to hide where no one can see me and nothing can hurt me. How do I stop feeling like this?
Caring for someone through a long illness deeply affects one's life. And one is that it tends to gradually absorb more and more of your time, and then when the illness is over, to leave you with time on your hands and you're somewhat disconnected from previous activities. And as a widow, many previous activities were presumably things you did together, and trying to do things singly also feels odd at first. At two years, one's primary grief work ought to be done, and continuing lack of interest and sadness could be Depression, as well, and deserving treatment in its own right. I'm wondering what your psychiatrist is doing about this dimension of your life, other than simply telling you to go out and about ? Also, why not explore the Anxiety/Depression Support Group ?
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