Psycho-Babble Medication | about biological treatments | Framed
This thread | Show all | Post follow-up | Start new thread | List of forums | Search | FAQ

Re: Racer's Set Point and Ideas on Depression

Posted by Annie on July 14, 1999, at 13:42:58

In reply to Racer's Set Point and Ideas on Depression, posted by PL on July 14, 1999, at 11:19:44

Hmmm. Your post greatly intrigues me, but I'm not certain where you're going with the analogy. I don't think people with happy childhoods are immune to depression as adults and unhappy children are to doomed to adult depression.
I agree that those of us with extremely dysfunctional childhoods, may find that exhilarating, storybook kind of happiness frightening. Maybe because it is so alien to us and/or because we're afraid we'll be devastated when it goes away. Our capacity to experience happiness was stunted as children. If you were too happy, something horrible was bound to happen. Peace and quiet was happiness. Not crying was happiness. Not hurting was happiness. Not being hungry was happiness. Anything more was overwhelming and threatening. This was learned and I think it can be unlearned. I think that this is a separate problem from depression. It exacerbates the depression and vice versa, but it existed before the depression and could exist when the depression is gone. Having depression and the introspection that comes with it, have offered me the opportunity to look at 'normal' in a new light. There are highs and lows --- not just baseline. I want to be able to relish the highs when I have them and tolerate the lows while they last. Racer's weight set-point is a perfect weight for her height. I don't want to accept a set-point for happiness that is less than perfect. Not perfect happiness, but perfect capacity for happiness. I do agree that while we are in a depressive episode, we should try to appreciate the little things and maybe that is what you are saying. What do you think? Help me understand.

> Your ideas of how weight set-point affects feelings of body image makes me think of any analogy to depression. I think as children, how much fun we had or didn't have has a lot to do with depression as adults. I think all children need to be happy or they create it artificially.
> Children that become normal adults feel happiness when they get a good grade, when they talk and play with their friends, go to a movie or the park, make the swim team or are made president of the chess club. Their set point for happiness is at a normal level. But suppose these things don't happen.
> In that case artificial happiness may occur when they watch TV with their parents NOT fighting. (My dad used to say we "Live in a mad house.") Or a day at school when no one picks on them. Or they get to sleep late on a Saturday.
> Suppose the happiness set point of depressed people is at such a low level that they are overwhelmed by really good things. They can't find pleasure from getting a raise at work, going to the theater or taking a ride in the county. Instead, they instigate arguments with their family so they can feel guilty, and everyone is upset, just like when they were kids. They cry uncontrollably for doing this then feel better when they are forgiven.
> They get psychotically unhappy about little things, like running out of detergent, finding a spot on a shirt, or having to sew on a button and end up hysterical which brings on suicidal fantasizes and hating themselves for letting these things happen. Later, if they don't die, they feel better. When you hit bottom, you can only go up, if just a little. (Like banging your head against the wall because it feels so good when you stop.)




Post a new follow-up

Your message only Include above post

Notify the administrators

They will then review this post with the posting guidelines in mind.

To contact them about something other than this post, please use this form instead.


Start a new thread

Google www
Search options and examples
[amazon] for

This thread | Show all | Post follow-up | Start new thread | FAQ
Psycho-Babble Medication | Framed

poster:Annie thread:8705