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#1 March 29, 2019 17:48:45

abalone1
From: Carapooee, Vic, Australia
Registered: 2019-03-29
Posts: 1
Profile  

Graves disease relationship & depression

I am 69 years old & I was diagnosed by my Endocrinologist with Graves Disease on the 19th March this year. I have been taking 6 x 5mg tabs of Carbimazole a day since then. I don’t know if they are making any difference but I feel terribly down & depressed. I will have another blood test a week before I have an appointment with my endocrinologist on the 23rd April in Melbourne, 4 1/2 hours drive for where I am staying now in Portland, Victoria, Australia.

My partner of 32 years left me, with no prior warning, the day before Christmas last year. He just disappeared from our home in the middle of the night & I haven’t seen him since. By email he says he had to leave because he was traumatised by my inexplicable anger, depression & mood swings & has refused to speak to me since then.

We do exchange emails but I find them to be a cold & unsatisfactory form of communication & we are getting nowhere towards solving the problems of our relationship. He is seeing a counsellor for help with the trauma he is suffering & he says he may consider us getting back together when I get better, but that is really no help to me when I really need his support & help now
.
Since my diagnosis I have been asking him for help & support & apart from vaguely kind emails about domestic trivia I get nothing but told to be patient until he heals from the trauma & damage that I have caused him to suffer.

I am having trouble sleeping & wake 2 or 3 times a night crying & in despair. Some days I weep & tremble for hours. I have lost 14 kilos in the last 3 months & my eyes feel weird, as if they have a furry ring around their outer edges. Also my skin is so thin that if I knock it lightly I bruise badly or bleed.

I am living on my own at present house sitting for some friends who are overseas, so I am also very lonely. When I am really down I tend to write emails to my partner that I later regret but don’t seem to be able to stop myself . I just want help & support from him so badly that I make things worse. I do have phone support from one very wonderful younger brother, who has organised all my medical appointments & accompanied me to them & also a nephew who calls me everyday. But my partner has become my overwhelming obsession & the main cause I think of my depression. If I can have some hope for our future I’m sure I’ll feel a lot better.
I am an artist & my art has always been the mainstay of my life & my saviour but I’m even struggling with that now as I can’t seem to concentrate for long.

I have been drug dependant since I was 16 smoking marijuana & drinking heavily most of the time. I was a functioning alcoholic & I gave up drinking 18 months ago, cold turkey. My partner reckons I changed for the worse from then. I was just trying to cope with the incredible life change & the end of my social life with my drinking friends.

I decided I would try TM (transcendental meditation) to cope with my anger & mood swings. Early last December I booked into a class starting in mid-January 2019. I had to stop smoking marijuana 15 days before the course to clear my head so I did & haven’t smoked since. TM has certainly helped me but not solved this crisis. I gave up tobacco smoking out of fear in 2015, 3 weeks before a major operation to remove a a severe skin cancer from my face. I spent 2 months at the end of 2018 lying in bed unable to move because I hurt my lower back badly & couldn’t walk. My partner looked after me with great care then, as I did for him when he had bowel cancer some years before.

It seems that any illness that has overtones of psychological symptoms is stigmatised & misunderstood to the extent that the sufferer is blamed for their disease. Whereas if you have cancer everyone is sympathetic & wants to help you. I have lost a partner & a number of friends through my angry, irritable & edgy behaviour which I now believe was due to undiagnosed Graves disease.

I have lived in remote rural Australia on a small farm for the last 30 years & the medical services there are basic to almost non-existent - shame on the Australian government.

This has been a cathartic vent for me & I hope you understand how & why I feel this way. If you can offer any help or support I would greatly appreciate it. I have read the stories of other women & the wonderful letter from the husband of the Graves disease lady & they have helped me understand what is happening to me, thank you!

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#2 April 1, 2019 11:09:43

Kimberly
Online Facilitator
Registered: 2008-10-14
Posts: 4127
Profile  

Graves disease relationship & depression

Hello and welcome - I'm sorry to hear that you are going through this, but glad that you found us.

The good news is that you *should* start to see improvement in your symptoms as your thyroid levels stabilize. Meds like carbimazole start working right away to block new thyroid hormone production, but your body still needs so rid itself of its extra stored hormone, which can take a few weeks.

Graves' can definitely put a strain on family relationships and friendships. Any chance your partner would be willing to read the “Open Letter to Husbands of Graves'” bulletin that you referenced? This video below is also very enlightening.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CB8_5rbCso8&t=1738s

It certainly seems unfair that your care during your partner's illness isn't being reciprocated. It's much easier said than done, but it's important to focus on YOU and regaining your health right now.

You might also consider joining the GDATF's group on Facebook, as that tends to get a lot more activity than this forum.

Wishing you all the best.





Kimberly
GDATF Forum Facilitator

…through nature's inflexible grace, I'm learning to live…
– Dream Theater

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