Browsed by
Category: grad school

Grad school & Depression

Grad school & Depression

How did I get through grad school with depression…

Someone posed this question to me, and to tell you the truth I have no idea.  I’m fairly smart anyways, I guess.  I graduated top of my class in high school.  School, especially in high school and junior high, was always something I could do right.  It got me out of fights with the parents, and out of most socialization.  Basically, I could hide behind it.  By the time college rolled around, it was a habit, something expected out of me, and something that provided some sort of schedule, normalcy, to my life. 

As far as grad school in particular… it was SO rough.  I was living alone, which was a first for me.  I had a good counselor who allowed me to explore my past, another first for me.  Between the two, I didn’t really have any one to support me during the week between sessions.  I had convinced myself over and over that I was a horrible person, and still think that to this day.  There were days when I would wake up and fix breakfast.  By the time I had eaten, I had seen or heard something triggering and was back crying.  I would get so exhausted that I would fall asleep.  And the process would start all over again.  There were days I was only up for an hour or two, for 15-30 minutes at a time, because everything was so triggering.  I would write emails to my counselor when things got bad.  Just about all the time, I wouldn’t remember writing them, much less what I said. 

Classes, again at this stage, provided a normal schedule for me.  At this time of day on this day I have to be awake, dressed, and out the door.  I had to have prepared this lesson or be prepared for this test.  It gave me something to fill in the dark hours with.  Something I had to do.

Several times my counselor suggested hospitalization, but each time I refused.  Sometimes I wish I had been hospitalized.  Other times, I realize then everyone would have known. 

In a way, I wished I could have stayed there.  Alas, it was a small college town, with not many real jobs.  I couldn’t ever find a job there, neither could my husband.  For once I had friends who actually came over and visited.  Who included me in their plans.  For the most part I’d never had that.  I had friends that were friends only around test time, or project time. 

Hmmm… this was such a good post, I think I’ll have to do the same thing with undergrad and maybe even high school.