Professional Help for Depression
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Professional Help for Depression
Depressed for 5 years - other ways of healing?
I have been depressed for the better part of 5 years. I've had
psychotherapy, been on and off various antidepressants, etc... all of
which have helped to some extent. I've read books as well. The
depression has been from repeated traumatic events and I'm looking
for other ways of healing. I've been interested in hypnotherapy, reiki,
etc... and am looking for recommendations for these and other
solutions. I just don't feel that talking about it is helpful anymore and I
don't want to be on antidepressants anymore. I'm looking for
something deeper. Any suggestions would be so helpful!
looking for healing...
My heart goes out to you. Yes, it seems that at a certain
point, talking has limited use. I have several
recommendations that have helped me: 1) Recovery, Inc. 2)
Reiki 3) EFT tapping.
Since you are open to alternatives, let me strongly
suggest homeopathy for what ails you.
I credit homeopathy with helping me recover from a
life-long depression. I know there are good remedies for
One of my neighbors is an EMDR therapist for the VA, working
with PTSD veterans. Apparently EMDR is highly effective.
If I hadn't met her, I never would have heard of it. Do
your research, but here's a start:
''Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)1 is a
comprehensive, integrative psychotherapy approach. It
contains elements of many effective psychotherapies in
structured protocols that are designed to maximize treatment
effects. These include psychodynamic, cognitive behavioral,
interpersonal, experiential, and body-centered therapies2.
EMDR psychotherapy is an information processing therapy and
uses an eight phase approach to address the experiential
contributors of a wide range of pathologies. It attends to
the past experiences that have set the groundwork for
pathology, the current situations that trigger dysfunctional
emotions, beliefs and sensations, and the positive
experience needed to enhance future adaptive behaviors and
EMDR is further described here:
...wishing you swift healing & complete recovery!
Hello, I know that you have tried multiple therapies but have
you tried EMDR. It is an integration of cognitive, somatic,
and emotive techniques. It was originally used with the PTSD
of veterens. However, some of the main symptoms of PTSD
include depression, anxiety, anger, and other emotional
dysregulation. So it has expanded to the treatment of these
The 2 things that have helped me tremendously are EMDR and
meditation-serious meditation-week long silent retreats.
This may be hard for you to do, but EMDR is not, and it
helped me so much.
Hi! I have had severe PTSD since I was a teen (I'm 40). I,
too, found conventional talk therapies useless and went
through several therapists with no success. Then a
co-worker of my husbands, a child psychologist, mentioned
that people with PTSD need to be in therapy with PTSD
specialists. I started cognitive behavioral therapy. It's
made a world of difference and is much more than just ''talk
therapy.'' While I'm all for alternative healing solutions,
too (I exercise, journal, do self care stuff), my experience
is that if you have PTSD, you need to see a PTSD specialist.
also have PTSD
I've spent the past few years healing from PTSD and I've
tried a variety of approaches. (I, too, realized that talk
therapy wasn't doing anything for me --in a way it just made
the depression worse, since I was always talking about my
problems and ''what was wrong.'' The more I focused on the
negative stuff, the worse I felt.) Two things I have found
helpful are EMDR and somatic therapy (primarily Somatic
Experiencing, developed by Peter Levine).. I've
also seen a variety of alternative (some REALLY alternative)
practitioners. If you'd like to talk more about this, please
email me directly.
i have significant experience with depression and have also
done therapy and drugs, as well as a number of alternative
approaches. i will tell you what really makes the difference
for me (you have likely heard it before):
i do know that making yourself exercise when you are
depressed is next to impossible. so do yourself a favor and
hire a trainer or commit with a friend... anything that will
MAKE you get started. (maybe commit to running in a race on
a certain date, or something with a goal to have in front of
you.) though it may not fix everything, you will start
feeling better very quickly and everything will seem more
I wanted to suggest seeing a therapist who specializes in trauma
therapy and uses EMDR. I have found it so much more helpful than talk
therapy or meds. Just a few sessions have been incredibly helpful! I
am sorry that you are having so much trouble. EMDR is excellent at
addressing trauma and getting rid of it. I hope you find something
that helps. Feel free to contact me if you have questions.
I had a beautiful stillborn baby last year and felt as though nothing
was helping, certainly not talking any more. The first bit of healing
I got was when I saw a woman I had previously seen for massage. Turns
out she had been doing Shamanic training in South America. This is
nothing I would have sought out, but she was a wonderful massage
therapist, so I was game. Completly amazing and healing, and very
moving. My husband has also benefitted tremendously. Her name is Marin
Cassasa and she works mostly of San Franciso. Her number is (415)
I would highly recommend trying EMDR. There are many therapists
locally that do it. Keep asking until you find someone/something that
It sounds like you would be a very good candidate for a
treatment called EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and
Reprocessing). This was originally developed for the
treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and is an
incredibly efficient way to move past issues that have not
resolved through other methods of treatment (like
traditional talk therapy). Eye movements are used to
trigger your brain's natural information processing
mechanisms to help your mind ''digest'' traumatizing and
adverse experiences so that you don't continue to respond to
the memory of them in the same way. I wanted to reach out
to you because you wrote that you were sick of just talking
about the issues and the beauty of EMDR is that you don't
have to verbalize everything all over again. It is such an
efficient way to resolve traumas. I am a therapist and
discovered EMDR after a friend experienced the profound
results in her own therapy. It has changed my practice
because of the closure I have seen it bring to so many
people who have been struggling with the same issues for
their entire adult lives and are frustrated and desperate
because they feel stuck. You can find out more about it at
I was treated for PTSD (but not depression) for my inability
to move on from surviving a violent marriage combined with
death of friends during childhood. I did cognitive therapy
for 7 years and still couldn't move on. What worked for me
I did this for about 4 sessions and I don't know why but it
worked. I was finally able to let go of the shame and the
survivors guilt that burdened me for so many years.
I did that 10 years ago and am no longer in therapy. I do,
though, have to take steps to keep myself emotionally
healthy. Currently I visit the acupuncturist monthly for my
needle nap and recently began daily 30 minute mindful
meditation. The meditation, btw, has had a much more
powerful impact than I could have anticipated. Especially
when it comes to my ability to remain calm when dealing with
my 2 young high energy boys.
Best of luck to you!
Hope this helps!
Husband's debilitating depression
I have a 4 month old daughter. My husband has a major,
long-term, ''treatment-resistant'' depression. He's tried
every medication (the list is something like 30 drugs and
combinations) including some MAOI's, one of which helped
land him in the ER when I was 9 months pregnant. He has
heard from everyone that he should exercise, but won't/isn't
able to actually do something about it. Ditto with dietary
changes, such as cutting down on the wine, coffee, etc. These things
contribute to his being overweight, having
sleep problems, snoring. He also suffers from migraines.
He's been in therapy with his Psychiatrist but he doesn't
seem to think it has done anything to help. Bottom line is
he's depressed. Often to the point where he is in bed most
of the day.
I'm looking for some sort of support group for myself. Does
anyone know of such a thing in the Bay Area? coping
Check with the National Alliance For Mental Health. They
have s support group for depressives in San Francisco.
According to the link there are also affiliates in Oakland
What is positive about NAMI is that they are a group that
encourages both medical and social management of mental
illness. It also helps family members reduce their feelings
of isolation, and advocates for better medical care and the
governmental financial resources necessary to provide that care.
Not directly responsive to your question, but it struck me reading
your post (about snoring and overweight and not wanting to exercise)
that your husband may have sleep apnea, which can exacerbate
depression by causing exhaustion.
Pharmacological treatment for depression is typically an adjunct to
therapy, not a substitute for it. You didn't mention whether the
prescribing psychiatrist is having regularly scheduled (at least
weekly) sessions with him.
Local NAMI chapter could be a place to look for support groups for
yourself. Self-care could also include therapy for yourself.
It's a tough situation. Be as good to yourself as you possibly can,
and this includes scheduling fun activities and seeing your friends.
All the best to you!
Your situation sounds very difficult, especially with a new baby. I
have to say that when I read about 30 medicines, drinking too much
wine and coffee, and landing in the ER, it sounds very much like a
classic case of addiction to me.
Perhaps you could get an addiction assessment for your husband, or go
talk to the good folks at Merritt Peralta Institute, or take their
free series of 4 Saturday am classes on the topic to learn more about
addictive behaviors. Alcohol, pills, stimulants, and depression go
hand-in-hand. For yourself, you could also try out several Al-Anon
groups which you can find online at www.ncwsa.org. It is suggested a
person go to several groups when starting, and you can bring your baby
Best of luck to you. Been There
Therapist (cognitive behavior?) for depressed male
I am looking for current recommendations for a therapist
(preferably one who specialized in cognitive behavioral
therapy) for my brother, a depressed and anxious adult. He
needs someone who is laid back in personality (not
pretentious) and able to really work with him and ask
pressing questions. My brother is uncertain about what is
triggering his long term depression and really needs help
beyond surface level speculation.
I highly recommend Robert Gorden, LCSW. He has offices in Pinole and
Berkeley. Over 25 yrs experienced. He is a colleague of mine. He's been
my consultant on a number of cases and he's great-compassionate,
Since he owns his own Employee Assitance Program which serves local
hospitals, he has lots of experience w/ particular challenging folks
like high powered MD, lawyers etc but does great with all.
His number is 510-847-8830
Action Oriented Psychiatrist/Therapist to help with husband's depression
We are looking for recommendations for psychiatrists
(preferably female) in the Oakland/Berkeley area to help
with my husband's depression. He has struggled with
depression and taken medication in the past and feels that
medication may also be the route to get him back on track
this time. He would like to find someone who can give him
concrete strategies to overcome his depression and regain
his happiness. He wants to feel like he's accomplishing
something and not just expressing his feelings with someone
who's a good listener. Any recommendations are greatly
appreciated. We have two very young children at home and I
want them to know their daddy as a happy guy!
Hoping for Happy again
I recommend you investigate Emotional Brain Training
www.ebt.org It is based out of UCSF and has shifted my
depression and anxiety tremendously. best wishes
I don't have a recommendation for a therapist, but Kaiser
offers a class, open to non-members for a fee, that was a
big help to me when I was suffering from depression. When I
took it the focus was on cognitive behavioral therapy--
recognizing pattern of thinking that lead to negative
feelings. The cost for 8 sessions is about the cost of 1
hour of a one-on-one therapist's time, and it is very self-
help focused. Here's a description snipped from the Kaiser
Managing depression series
Depression is common, real, and treatable. But it can be
hard to recognize. It is often felt as a low mood, sadness,
or irritability that won't go away. This series will explore
the causes and effects of depression on your thoughts,
feelings, and behaviors. You'll learn how to challenge
negative thinking that contributes to depression, and how to
reduce stress. You'll also get support for speaking up for
yourself and for returning to the activities you enjoy. The
skills learned in this course can help you manage moods long
after the class is over. We recommend attending the Managing
Depression Overview before taking this series.
This class is open to the general public.
Contact information (510) 752-1075
My wife gets these postings and showed me your request for
an action oriented therapist for your husband. I saw Dr.
Fran Wickner on Solano Avenue, ''dragged in'' by my wife. I
hadn't been to counseling before and was expecting someone
to just sit there and look at me and make me come in every
week. Instead Fran gave suggestions and homework that I
could work on between our sessions and if I had a work
meeting or other things happening we would reschedule our
appointment or meet the next week. The flexibility and the
fact that she interacted with me made me actually start
looking forward to our sessions.
She's on the Albany side Solano Avenue near the Berkeley
510-527-4011, don't know her email but she has a website.
Husband helped by therapy
I can recommend Christine Benvenuto as a therapist for your
husband who struggles with depression. It's so hard to watch
someone you love battle depression and not living up to
their emotional potential. I believe Christine can help! She
is a very action-oriented therapist who is trained to teach
mindfulness along with skills, both interpersonal and to
help people respond to their emotions in productive ways.
She is very engaging to be with and has worked successfully
with many adults overcome debilitating depression. Her
website, which I believe may be in-the-works, is
Her office is in Rockridge and phone number is 510-421-6766
I wish you and you family the best...
supportive BPN reader
Therapist for general Adult Depression
I am looking for an intelligent well-rounded psychologist in Alameda
or San Francisco county who specializes in adult depression and
obsessive-compulsive disorders (these are self-diagnosed so they may
not be correct). I would love suggestions of therapists as well as
suggestions about how to support a loved one as they are going through
Dr. James Ballenger is an excellent therapist that specializes in
adult depression. He practices both in SF and Oakland. He's
results-oriented, compassionate, and has a lot of experience!
His phone number is (415)385-5400 and email: email@example.com
I would recommend Orit Weksler MFT. She has experience working with
people who struggle with depression, OCD and other pretty severe
difficulties. She's creative, thoughtful and has a unique way of
looking at things. Her office is on University Ave. in Berkeley and
her phone # is: 510-295-2588
As for supporting a loved one who is going to counseling- you know,
counseling isn't an illness, first thing would be to support their
decision to go, then enduring listening to them as they talk
endlessly about their therapist!
I am not a therapist, but do know of someone I would recommend most
highly. Jan Bowman: the very best. Intuitive, very committed, and
compassionate. I also think she has sliding scale.
510 594 9569
I'm not sure if those issues are her specialty, but I have been
seeing Dr. Lisa Lancaster and have found her extremely intelligent
and well-rounded. I came to her with some pretty severe depression
and have really improved. Her number is 510-841-2525. She has an
office in Berkeley.
Psychiatrist for Depressed Husband
My husband is a pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps kind of guy and is
incredibly resistant to the idea of seeking help from other people. That
said, I am looking for recommendations for a psychiatrist in the Berkeley
or Walnut Creek area for him who is smart and logical and no-nonsense
without being dismissive, but who can also work with a patient who is not
going to be especially willing to be there, except to discuss medication
options. My husband struggles with depression and has recently been
drinking more--and more frequently. He agreed to cut out the alcohol and
get some help. We have Blue Shield HMO.
Trying to Help Him Help Himself
I highly recommend Dr. Richard Levine in Berkeley for your husband. Dr.
Levine is extremely no nonsense, down to earth, humorous and irreverent. I
am sure that your husband could deal with seeing him. He is not your
typical psychiatrist at all. I have seen him for medication management for
depression and always enjoy him. I don't usually post answers to advice
requests, but this one just sounded like a perfect fit.
Hi, I am hoping someone can make a personal referral to a good
psychiatrist, psychologist or therapist, preferably no further
south than Berkeley. My mother, who is close to 80, has had a
very bad year. She lost her husband, had several serious
illnesses, and had to move to assisted living in Pinole. She has
always been prone to depression (she is bipolar), she's
physically and psychologically frail, and she's given up. I
believe she would benefit from some talk therapy. (She is
already on medication for depression and we don't want to put her
on any more, at least not until we've tried talk therapy.) She
is in a difficult financial situation at present so it needs to
be one of the following who are on her insurance plan. (And I
can't pay for her.)
I am looking for feedback for any of the people on this list.
All the following are in Berkeley except for the first two, who
I've had trouble getting in touch with: Elizabeth Milnes Ph.D. (#
disconnected--Richmond); Richard Bloom Ph.D. (still waiting for
return call--Pinole); Patricia Hart Ph.D.,; Susan Brand Ed.D,;
Robert Dolgoff M.D.; Ronald Elson M.D.,; Peter Freedman M.D;
Stuart Gold M.D. Bonnie Kahane Ph.D.; Peggy Kelly Ph.D.;
Catherine Lee Ph.D.; Arlene Marcus Ph.D.; Joel Marcus M.D.;
Christopher Michel M.D.; Patricia Miller Hart Ph.D.; Meshulam
Plaves Ph.D.; Robert Roller M.D.; Rick Trautner M.D.; Richard C
Unger M.D.; John Rosenberg M.D.
I know many of the people on the list are doctors rather than
''talk therapists'' but I have to work with the confines of her
insurance (grr!!). I feel it is important to hook her up with
someone good--she has had poor experiences with Dr. Stamford in
Berkeley and Dr. Frank at Herrick Hospital (psychiatric wing).
Can anyone help? She's in bad shape. I hate to just pick
someone off a list.
I have been seeing Dr. Lisa Lancaster (in Berkeley 510-841-2525) for
about 6 months and have been extremely happy. I have suffered with
depression for a number of years and am finally starting to make
progress. I am in my 70s.
I'm not familiar with the particular doctors you're asking about, but I
wanted to share my experience with my mother-in-law who has many
similar issues (almost 80, physically frail, coping with recent losses,
lifetime of depression). After almost half a century of on and off talk
therapy, my MIL has just started seeing her first female therapist. It
has made a HUGE difference for her to be talking to a woman. Apparently
she's been self-editing in her therapy sessions for all these years,
but now that she's seeing a woman she feels safe enough to really open
up. Since your mother is of the same generation, she may have similar
I recommend very highly Dr. Patricia Hart. She is very experienced and
is practicing psychologist for many years. She has an excellent
reputation in the community.
I've worked at Alta Bates in both the in-patient & out-patient Mental
Health departments for over 12 years. I have lots of experience working
with Robert Dolgoff M.D.; Joel Marcus M.D.;
Christopher Michel M.D.; Rick Trautner M.D.; Richard C Unger M.D.; &
John Rosenberg M.D. They are all very good practitioners & I would feel
comfortable recommending a family member to any of them.
My wife and I saw Meshulam
Plaves Ph.D. one time. While we did not end up choosing him, our
experience was that he is very laid back and tries hard to listen. If
I had to choose from these individuals, Meshulam is the one I
Of your list, I had a very bad
experience with Stuart Gold about 10 years ago. He
would not return phone calls when I started to have adverse interactions with the
medications. Even when I left several messages for him telling him I was suicidal, he
never returned any of my phone calls.
I've had good experiences with John Rosenberg, but he is not at all a ''talk''
therapist. I've heard good things about Joel Marcus, but don't know if he's taking
new patients. I'm also not sure if John Rosenberg is.
If your mother is bipolar, she'll need psychiatric, pharmaceutical intervention first
and foremost, then talk therapy and eldercare, grief support second. I'd try to find
a good psychiatrist first (caution: it can take several months to get an initial
appointment even after you've found someone who's taking new patients). In the
meanwhile, I'd try
to find some social support/grief counseling for your mother, even if it's not in the
form of an actual therapist. Maybe her doctor, church or temple can suggest a grief
support group. There are several organizations offering elder support services in the
community, even for elders who speak foreign languages. Look through the yellow pages
under ''Elder Care Services.'' You could also contact the Gray Panthers or AARP for
other resources. Finally, there's a therapist, Monica Nowakowski-Carlson, who offers
free support groups for caregivers of the elderly through Herrick Hospital. You might
contact her for more resources and support for yourself.
We are looking for recommendations for a therapist or
psychologist who contracts with Healthnet (MHN) to help my
husband with his depression. My husband has seen a few people in
the past, but felt that while they were good at listening to his
issues, they didn't offer enough analysis or solutions to help
him feel as though he was moving forward. He is particularly
looking for a therapist to help him understand the causes of his
depression and give him strategies to work through it. We're
looking for someone in the general Oakland/ Berkeley vicinity.
Paul Minsky, PhD is a great therapist. My husband went to him and
really benefited from the therapy. He also does couple work. His number
is 510 524-0700. He has an office across from Herrick Hospital and on
I would recommend Dr. Lisa Lancaster for anyone suffering from
depression. She has done wonderful work with me over the last 6
months. I think she could help your husband.
She is in Berkeley (510-841-2525)
Since it sounds like you are looking for actionable techniques to
combat and overcome depression, I would encourage you to look for a
therapist who primarily specializes in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. I
also think ''Feeling Good'' by Dr. Burns and ''Mind Over Mood'' (forget
the author but it's well known and easy to find) are a good supplement
to therapy and something to keep your head above water while you look
for the right therapist. This approach deals with debunking distorted
thought patterns that lead to distorted emotional reactions. It
requires some effort on the part of the patient but in my experience it
has been a big help. I don't have anyone to recommend to you,
unfortunately, but I hope this helps you find the right person and keep
it together until things improve. Take good care.
If your husband would benefit from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, whose
basic premise is that the way you think influences how you feel and
behave, then I might be a good match for him. I am interactive and use
a lot of education about disorders in my practice, and accept MHN. I
have an office in downtown Berkeley and would be happy to speak with
him further about his needs and concerns. CBT is very good for anyone
who is willing to examine the ways they're thinking and how it
contributes to their moods. Anxiety and depression can both be
ameliorated by challenging distorted thinking and replacing it with
more balanced, rational thinking. I can also recommend the book, _Mind
Over Mood_ by Padesky and Greenberger (and published by Guilford); this
nifty self-help book helps people examine their thinking more logically
My husband--in his early 40s--is suffering increasingly from depression and anxiety. He has
a family history of depression. His mother committed suicide in her early 40's, when he was
14. He has not seen a therapist since that time, and he does not take any depression
medication. For most of his adult life, he has been pretty happy. During the last year and a
half , however, he had several blue periods, and recently it has gotten much worse. He has
insomnia and horrible nightmares. I think in part he is struggling with the realization that he
has now lived longer than his mother did, and he is full of grief and overwhelming sadness.
He knows he needs help, but he is not able to do anything about it. Everything--job, home,
marriage, parenting--has become very difficult for him. He finally agreed that he would see
someone. I would appreciate recommendations for therapists (psychologists, psychiatrists? I
don't even know what kind of person would be best). I would also appreciate suggestions for
how I can best help him. I am sorry that it didn't fully hit me until just recently, how really
depressed he is. I have been frustrated by his lack of responsiveness and communication, and
I don't think I have been very supportive. I now see that he just can't cope with anything right
now. Thanks for any help you can give us.
Recommendations for therapists that were received in response to this question are
on this page: Therapists for Depression
Recommendations for psychiatrists that were received are
on this page: Psychiatrists]
Depression and anxiety are treated with Mental Health Services. I am a Kaiser member
and found their programs very helpful with a combination of individual counseling,
medication, informational workshops, and teaching of behavior-changing coping skills.
I'm sure other medical plans have similar services available. Additionally, you can
contact Care Services here on campus because they frequently publicize informational
groups regarding dealing with depression or anxiety.
I recommend Cheryl Jones as a therapist. (653-7374) I've suffered from
depression for years and have gone in and out of counseling. She's the first
therapist I've found who really seems able to zone in on where I get stuck and
help me create concrete ways to overcome them, in addition to being empathetic
and creating a space for me to express pent-up feelings. She can't prescribe
meds, but she can work with your husband to figure out whether meds would help
and his primary care physician probably could prescribe them. Alternatively, he
could get a limited referral to a psychiatrist to get an appropriate
As for how to help your husband, my suggestion is to let him talk about how bad
he feels and just hear it, rather than trying to tell him it's not that bad.
Let him cry. But tell him how much you love him and what you love about him.
Then spend time doing something with him. Also, encourage him to go to
counseling and to take meds. I've taken Prozac and it has really helped. It
does not make you feel unnatural or drugged; it just eliminates the lowest of
The first thing I would do is get a physical to rule out a physical
cause, and especially have the thyroid checked out, since the symptoms
you mention can be the result of a thyroid disorder. If there is no
physical cause, then I would see a psychiatrist. They specialize in
medicines for depression and anxiety.
I have had a similar experience, but with myself, not
a spouse. I have a family history of depression,
suicides and insomnia, and when I turned 40 my own
experience with depression/anxiety/insomnia began. It
sounds from your description like your husband may
need medication, that is something he would need to
discuss with a professional (family physician, or
psychiatrist) but from my experience, medication is
not necessarily a solution, although it can be a great
help as an adjunct to therapy, especially if the
situation has gotten to the point where he is having
There are herbal medications that some people find
useful who don't trust anti-depressants and such. I
personally didn't have a good experience with the
herbal route, but tried a lot of things because I had
an aversion to using the mainstream medications. Now I
think and early combination of the right therapy and
medications could have saved me a couple of years of
suffering (as well as my family). A doctor who is
willing to work with both kinds of medications might
be a good choice if you are interested in trying herbs
For me the important thing is getting back as soon as
possible to feeling more stable and in control of
life, so that the therapy can happen. It's very hard
to be in therapy when you just want to withdraw and
are sleep deprived.
The most helpful thing I've done so far for myself is
EMDR therapy, and I'd hightly recommend it especially
if you think earlier traumatic experiences are part of
the picture. I am MUCH better since I began this kind
of therapy. I know of other people who have had the
same experience. A good psychologist who does EMDR as
part of therapy is what has worked well for me.
As for what you can do, I know it's HARD to live with
someone who's going through this, but it can also
bring you closer if he gets the right kind of help.
Patience, understanding, compassion. He will not be
able to be present in the marriage (and as a parent)
until he gets help. It may take a while. My husband
learned to be patient and giving with me while I was
going through this, and now I appreciate him ever so
much more. Our relationship has deepened. We're both
better for the experience.
I'm not a counselor, but your message really touched me and I'd like to
help, if only to offer my support and friendship. My understanding is that
your husband would need to see a psychiatrist in order to get an
anti-depressant prescription (he needs to be diagnosed with depression first
and other types of therapists aren't allowed to prescribe medicine). It
would really help him to see a psychotherapist for ongoing therapy. I
strongly encourage you to go with him to his appointments, if he's open to
this, so that you can understand how depression breaks down your ability to
cope, and ultimately find ways to help him help himself.
My husband was diagnosed with attention deficit disorder last year (at age
46). It's a life long disease that he's had since he was born. He has
lived his whole life with people telling him he's irresponsible and lazy and
that he needs to "focus" (I have been one of those people, so I know your
plight of not being understanding at first). We started with a diagnosis
from a psychiatrist, who put my husband on a drug similar to Ritalin, and
are now seeing a psychotherapist for ongoing counseling to help us learn how
to manage his ADD.
I'd be happy to talk with you offline. We've gone to see a couple of
different psychotherapists and I can make some recommendations, if you like.
I know it must have been hard for you to reach out to this board, and I'm
glad you did!
Concerning treatment of depression. I strongly recommend Susan Drager. She
is a LCSW but has connections with excellent psychiatrists if medication is
in order. I have recommended her to a friend for her daughter and they
are very satisfied. She sees patients at offices in Oakland or Walnut
Creek. Her phone is 510 763 1502.
I have been using a wonderful and highly recommended psychiatrist, who
is really a 'mensch' - Richard Levine, MD for many years for familial
depression. He's very up to date on the latest treatments, both
prescription and therapeutic, is wonderfully compassionate, and has been
an absolute lifesaver. I've sent several friends, all who have been very
pleased. His phone is 540-1746. His receptionist's name is Claudia. His
office is at 1749 MLK between Francisco and Delaware. They do bill
insurance Hope this helps.
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