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Depression: Depression & Related Conditions

Ask Dr. Dombeck
Ask Dr. Dombeck
Psychotherapy and Mental Health Questions

How Can I Stop Depression From Recurring?

I am 38, work full time (teaching), have 2 children (8 and 4). My first diagnosed depression was about 15 years ago and it took about 3 months to return to "normal" (ish!) and another year before I felt "over it". Achieved that through meds and group therapy as an outpatient. I had minor episodes after that, returned to meds briefly, came out of it. 15 mo ago I rapidly slipped into another major depression. Outwardly I am over it (with the help of meds and counseling), but stress was a major feature and I keep finding myself succumbing to it, feeling exhausted and despairing of ever being "on top" again. My Dr has told me that my lifestyle and attitude make it very likely that the depression will recur. His opinion is that my tendency to expect 101% of myself all the time puts too much pressure on me. However, I can't see where I can cut down (and friends / advisors can't either) and though I have had some success in my expectations of myself (which were totally unrealistic!) I can't seem to make the necessary step to reduce the probability of depression. Any comments on the likelihood of recurrence, and/or suggestions would be welcome. My counselor is currently unavailable, so I feel somewhat isolated though other friends have been very helpful.

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