What's going on with my brain?
June 1, 2006 7:34 AM   Subscribe

Is this depression, or is it something else? And what should I do to make it better?

I don't feel sad or tired all the time. Just utterly, utterly unmotivated. My lack of motivation is messing with my life at home and at work. And I'm drinking, smoking dope and surfing the internet more than I probably should.

Six months ago, I was the happiest I'd ever been (this was me). I wanted more, I went for it, and things don't seem to be working out as well as I'd have liked. I think I'm sliding back toward depression, but I'm not sure if I'm actually there yet.

I'm exercising, I'm eating well, I'm in a good relationship, I'm paying off my debt. I started a new job, and it's got me back in in the city I was yearning for.

But I don't like my boss, and the job isn't what I'd hoped it would be. I'm a very career-focused woman, and I've been angling for this job for six years now. My disappointment with the job is pretty overwhelming, but I'm still dedicated to my career even if I don't like this particular employer. I feel stuck.

I have zero motivation at work. I'm smart and fast, which means I can get the minimum done fairly well in a short amount of time. But I probably spend six hours a day surfing the web and posting to various message boards from work, and two hours scraping by.

I have zero motivation at home, too. I'm leaving newspapers everywhere, dishes everywhere, bills, paperwork. The bathtub is a mess, the toilet is unscrubbed. There's moldy food in the fridge, and when I look at it I just groan and shut the door. I'm having trouble paying bills on time. I can't make myself do anything about it. I keep telling myself I'll take care of things next weekend, but then I never do.

I'm probably averaging 10-12 beers a week. Not as much as during my last depression, but enough that I get a buzz more than half the nights when I come home. I'm smoking pot 4-5 times a week. Again, not as much as I've smoked in the past, but I know it's all about escapism. Mixed with the drinking and my smallish frame it really zonks me out.

And I'm feeling overwhelmed by the stress of my recent move, my new job, my impending wedding, the death of a cat, and the loss of a friend/support network I had before I moved.

At work and at home, I feel like I'm sabotaging my future by slacking off so much.

I'm not sad, really, just weighed down, overwhelmed and unable to move.

I don't know what to do.


Please don't tell me therapy. Unless you can recommend a genious miracle worker who takes Blue Cross in the Portland metro area, I don't want to hear it. My experiences with therapists have been universally disappointing.
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (34 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
Well, if you do decide to seek drug therapy, be aware that there are drugs that deal with sadness, such as prozac, and others that can have an "activating" effect, such as wellbutrin.
posted by StickyCarpet at 7:54 AM on June 1, 2006

My lack of motivation + I'm smoking pot 4-5 times a week = a good place to start.

Stop. Replace it with a long walk every night so you can sleep. Reflect every day on how this has made a difference. Clean one room at a time, every day, thoroughly. Make a pile out of the newspapers. Then put them in a box. Buy a book of stamps and a box of envelopes and pay one bill a day. Do it all when you get home from work, without thinking, without stopping, without sitting down.
posted by jon_kill at 7:56 AM on June 1, 2006 [1 favorite]

The only thing with a better track record at treating depression than a combination SSRIs ("mood enhancement" drugs) and therapy is regular aerobic exercise. So if you're really unwilling to go to a therapist (and frankly, it sounds like you should--remember that it can take several months and several therapists to find one with whom you really fit), go running for half an hour a day, or take a walk.
posted by maxreax at 7:58 AM on June 1, 2006

The lack of motivation probably stems from too much stress and not ennjoying your job. I know when I'm in a job that doesn't keep me busy enough, it just slows my entire life down.

If getting a different job right now isn't possible, try to find productive personal things you can do at work. I'm starting a Masters program, so any free time at work I spend studying, and that's helped me a lot. Can you get away with wedding planning while you're working?

You need a new social circle. It's just about summer, so rather than sitting home drinking and smoking, go outside and walk, at the very least. Or go hang out at a coffeeshop. Go out to events.

Don't be too hard on yourself - sometimes you just have to let funks like this ride its course. I bet as the weather gets nicer, it'll be easier to be motivated. And keep exercising!!
posted by bibbit at 7:59 AM on June 1, 2006

It sounds like you lack flow.

The generally recognized solution for that problem is (not surprisingly) to modify your lifestyle so that it includes more flow-producing activities. The first step is to understand what flow is and then to recall instances in your life when you have felt it. Then you either add tasks with similar sets of challenges and rewards or else try to restructure the tasks you already have on hand so that they are more flow-producing.

Adding tasks might include avocational creative activities, with an emphasis on the "active," e.g., writing, drawing, teaching, performing. Or sports, if you find a particular sport challenging and you find that a successful game makes you feel as if you've accomplished a goal.

Restructuring a work situation is sometimes a little trickier, but the basic idea is the same: the tasks should constitute a series of challenges that require your complete concentration and ability to accomplish successfully. In a situation like this one, where (it appear) you are underemployed, you can try setting time limits on each given task and then strive to finish within the alloted time.

There's a trend in cognitive-behavioral therapy now to make a contract for 10 or 15 sessions to accomplish a specific goal, measurable in changes in behavior. It seems to me that this kind of approach might work well for you without breaking the bank. (These short-term treatments are sometimes easier to pitch to an insurance company, too, as opposed to years of talk therapy.)
posted by La Cieca at 7:59 AM on June 1, 2006 [1 favorite]

This sounds exactly like what I went through while failing miserably at preparing for my Ph. D. candidacy exams. It was diagnosed as anxiety rather than depression, but the treatments are similar.

I've not gotten far through it myself, so I can only recommend based on what I've been told, but I've heard many good things about Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy by David Burns. The concept is that your thought patterns affect your mood (rather than only the reverse being true), and so you train yourself to think differently.

Some things that were recommended to me (by a therapist who was, in fact, very good) that met with some limited success personally:

Make yourself accountable. Tell someone at work what you plan to do that day.

Reward yourself when you do something you set out to do.
Right now, your workplace and your home have become places of stress because all you think about are the things you failed to accomplish. So accomplish just one little thing, something that doesn't seem insurmountable, and then reward yourself for it. Now the place (work or home) has one less thing hammering at you, plus you have a positive experience associated with it (you just did something fun because you earned it, NOT because you were putting something off).

Examine why you're not doing these things. What are you telling yourself to justify it? Are you telling yourself that you'll do the dishes in an hour? Will you? It's difficult to examine your own thought processes, but it's worthwhile to try. Perhaps you're telling yourself that there are too many dishes, and you just can't face doing them all. Ok. Can you face doing one sink-full? Would it really take that much time?

Are the mind/mood-altering substances helping? You're turning to depressants, because you expect them to make you feel better. But are they really? Or are they just giving you something else to feel guilty about?

I'm not trying to imply judgement about anything. Just suggesting some questions to ask yourself. It's hard. But this can be overcome. And you shouldn't feel bad about yourself for feeling this way. It happens. Life kicks everyone's ass sometimes. Good luck.
posted by solotoro at 8:00 AM on June 1, 2006

Can you afford to hire a maid to clean the place just once, to get you started on the path to keeping the place clean yourself?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:02 AM on June 1, 2006 [1 favorite]

So... you want free therapy from AskMe? You may well be depressed, you certainly seem to be self medicating with the alcohol. Perhaps think about medication? Try to identify with something other than job. My quality of life went way up once I realized that my "job" is not how I wanted to be identified. So, my life is extra busy as I have taken on many other things I want to learn/do, but it is better.
As far as home life. Simplify. Throw stuff out, throw everything out you don't need and there is less stuff to clean.
But, I don't know how much this place can help you really. Turn off the computer whenever you can, ask for more work at work...
posted by edgeways at 8:03 AM on June 1, 2006

Oh, I know the feeling. I haven't figured the whole thing out, but here are some things I've found helpful:

--During your downtime at work, go outside. I know that could sound lame, but sometimes just getting out, enjoying the weather, exploring the city you've longed to live in can change your perspective. Plus, no one will really care that you're gone as long as your work is done.

--Once you're back in the office, you may have a bit more energy and forward inertia. Use it. Don't surf when you sit back down. Either push past the minimum or socialize or something. Just don't let the momentum fade.

--Same with home. When you come in the door, clean for 15 minutes. That's it. Then you can sit all you want and feel like you've at least been moderately productive. At the end of the week, you'll have spent 1 1/4 hour cleaning, which will definitely put a dent in your mess. Pick an area to clean. eg, just go into your fridge with a big Hefty bag and toss all the moldy crap in it. Poof. One less task weighing on your mind.

--As for bills, I auto pay them. There is no other way that I would ever, ever pay them on time (if at all).

--Drugs/alcohol. You do not want to develop an addiction and it seems like you haven't yet. So far, it looks like habit. So all you need is to break the cycle. You need to get out of town, or go to a movie, or hang out at a bookstore, or join a club, or do anything that will put a speedbump in your path to zonked.

--Spend more time with your fiance if you can. Weddings shouldn't be stressful (though they always are), but you need to put it into perspective. The relationship is still the center of event. And whatever happens with the wedding, it'll be great. That's just how weddings are.

--Moving, disappointing job, cat, friends. These are big changes, but you will adjust. Also, know that you are NEVER stuck. You may have to make huge changes (which you can make in small steps), but you can always get yourself out of undesireable situations.

Also, there's no need to post anonymously on either of your posts. There are a huge number of people who could have asked either one--there is no shame to having either set of feelings.

All in all--make small changes that you know you can handle. Interrupt bad patterns so they can't form into habits. (And if it's really depression, you may have to... but you don't want to hear that.) So do what you can, and every day "what you can" will be a little more than the day before.

Good luck.
posted by TG_Plackenfatz at 8:06 AM on June 1, 2006 [2 favorites]

I second some of the other posts, first, are you in a position where you can actively seek for another job in the same field?

Also, work on cleaning up your place. From my own experience, coming home and living in a neat and tidy place does wonders for my attitude and feelings. As suggested, just choose something little to start off with. Maybe just try and get the dishes done or the newspapers picked up. Do this instead of drinking a beer or smoking pot, as folks have mentioned, they're depressants...not cures for feeling unmotivated.

As it seems your current job simply isn't stimulating your mind or spirit, see if you can find a hobby or activity that does. Think about the interests you've had in your past or now and how you can re-embrace them. Look for something entirely new and challenging to motivate you, which can then spread to the rest of your life.

You're missing something in your life, so the best solution is to find what it is or something just as good.
posted by Atreides at 8:40 AM on June 1, 2006

It seems like the answer is self-evident here. The big thing seems to be that you were happy with your old job (with a few concerns), and you hate your new one.

People who hate their jobs are often depressed, even if everything else is great. The stress of relocating to a crappy job is overwhelming. I've done it myself, and it stinks. Crappy jobs drive people to drink and have messy places. It's hard to stay motivated when you groan thinking about going to your crappy job the next day.

The solution? A new job. I relocated again to a new job which I love, and I'm a lot happier. Be willing to accept less pay to work for people you like. Just keep looking for something new, and you'll see some of that happiness come back eventually.
posted by I EAT TAPAS at 9:12 AM on June 1, 2006

"Hate your job? There's a support group for you. It's called EVERYBODY and they meet at the local bar."

//Drew Carey
posted by Wild_Eep at 9:18 AM on June 1, 2006

Lack of motivation can indeed be depression. Not all depression has sadness with it.

BTW you do know that pot is notorious for robbing one of motivation, right?
posted by konolia at 9:22 AM on June 1, 2006

There are delf-diagnosis tools on the Web for depression, and you sound depressed. Anti-depression meds might help you get enough motivation together to do the things you know you need to do. There's a lively debate about the use of anti-depressants. If you spend that much time on the web, you probably know the issues.

You say you're exercising and eating well. You need a plan to deal with the job. Finding a really good therapist is difficult. I have found the field to be full of incompetents. So make it a project to interview and select a great therapist. Ask them lots of questions about their training, qualifications, expertise. If they wilt or get angry in the face of questions, move on. Good luck.
posted by theora55 at 9:25 AM on June 1, 2006

I have spent much of my life in the same situation, and it can be hard to figure out what the things are that are making you feel bad, and what the things are that you're doing because you feel bad. Of course, many things belong to both groups and you need to figure out which changes will set up a virtuous circle of improvement in your life. Will quitting surfing the web at work make you feel good enough to clean your house, or is it better to clean your house first and then maybe you'll feel ready to tackle the web surfing? How about drinking more water or adding yoga or meditation to your daily routine? Is that something you should think about? And would you introduce it before or after other changes?

I've been thinking that it should be possible to put together a kind of "personal rescue plan" which would contain all of your tried-and-tested ways of making yourself feel better, in order of difficulty. So the first one might be "Take a few deep breaths (I like to active the blank screensaver before this and have it on a hot key)". The second could be "Drink a glass of water". The third might be to do a few yoga positions or stretches, or to take a shower, or to clear your desk or whatever. You would have a whole sequence of things, perhaps running through to "Establish/review a Getting Things Done system". The main point is that each thing would give you the slightly enhanced feeling of well-being needed to do the next thing. Sorry if this sounds more like a rambling blog post than an answer, it's just something I've been thinking about.

In the short term, I can promise you that cleaning your house and taking care of the bills will make you feel massively better at least for a while, and you'll be more ready to make other changes afterwards. Also, even the most vaguely justifiable psuedo-work feels much better that surfing the internet, find something, anything, at least faintly useful and do that instead, it'll really help. If you're lucky it'll turn out to be more helpful than you thought, some really fun and value-creating personal projects start out this way.

Lastly, I can say that the most depressed I've ever been in my life was a few months before my wedding, it was really all just too much. Things will get better.
posted by teleskiving at 9:52 AM on June 1, 2006

It sounds as if you're bored.

I don't mean it flippantly - you describe yourself as a bright person, and I think you're looking for a challenge in life. Since at the moment you don't have any external challenges, you're creating them in your personal life to give yourself something to focus on.

You're 27 or 28. You've accomplished a lot - you've found someone you want to spend your life with, you've made it through your education, you've got yourself a job, and even moved away from home. But you're smart and ambitious, and you're stuck in a boring little town far from the things and people you love, wondering if this is all there is to life.

Well, you don't have to let yourself be stuck. All the advice that people gave upthread about taking care of yourself and enriching your personal life is very good stuff, and will help you get through the everyday. But - I think you should start making firm plans with your fiance about what you are going to do in the future to get yourself closer to where you want to be. If you know that you only have to spend two more years in bumfuckville, suddenly it becomes a lot more bearable.

Sit down with your man and discuss timelines and goals together. Entertain your options - maybe you want to work abroad for a year, or take a really great vacation. Whatever it is, make it your goal and start working towards it. That way you have a purpose. When you have a purpose, life all of a sudden has more meaning and worth - because you're working at making something you really want happen.

I could have written your post, so I think I know what you're going through. Maybe I'm assuming too much, but I hope that my suggestion helps.
posted by meringue at 10:18 AM on June 1, 2006 [1 favorite]

Meringue's got it. You've realized that life isn't as interesting as you'd hoped, and you're bored, so you're creating challenges for yourself. You're not that different from anyone else in the world. It's not that other people are more motivated, but rather that motivation matters less to some people. It's a matter of perspective - you could be fascinated by everyday activities if you wanted to be, but you don't want to and I'm not suggesting you should be.

There are things which are inspiring, that will feed your soul, that you need to look for, but it's more about the journey than the destination.
posted by Mr. Gunn at 11:33 AM on June 1, 2006

Heh, this post is so me, it's eerie. I was gonna write a long post, but I just can't be bothered.

Drop the pot on the weekdays, it's not healthy. Don't drink on the weekdays either. I'm single and massively bored myself, so I try to fill the void with entertainment. Depending on how much you smoke and what you do, you're going to be impared the next day which is not good for your long term employment and health.

Do some exercise, hang out with friends more and chill out. Perhaps consider therapy and all the associated activities - I'm slowly warming up to that. There's no shame in seeking help (or is there?).

Good luck, this too shall pass.
posted by aeighty at 11:39 AM on June 1, 2006

If you're depressed now but you were extremely happy in the other post...have you considered that you may have bipolar disorder?
posted by radioamy at 11:58 AM on June 1, 2006

I very much feel the same way you do...as others here have said. I'm a lazy, procrastinating, unmotivated sob. My lifelong motto is, "it's never to late to procrastinate"

Life does seem to be a bit boring at times, and the feeling of, "is this all there is" can be overwhelming.

But i've come to realize that if I don't like something, I have to change it, it isn't going to change itself.

Over the course of the last few months i've started going to the gym and in a week i start my new job. But these things took effort on my part, no one handed them to me.

About your little drinking/smoking habbit; try and change it up a bit. Instead of drinking a case of beer a week, get some wine. A glass or two or red wine is supposed to be good for you, and it doesn't give you the same drunk feeling as beer does. As for the smoking, try it in different ways, or get some better stuff.

If you are smoking weak, dry, brown crud, all it is going to do is put you to sleep and keep you unmotivated. Depending on where you live there will be a great variation in the quality of stuff you can get. But whatever you do, get the BEST stuff you can; it's awesome how much of a difference there really is. Good, dank, sticky stuff will keep your mind active and awake....and please, if you are in the comfort of your home, don't use a pipe, get a nice glass piece with an ice catcher in it (world of difference here).

Something i've started doing is smoking a bit before hitting the gym...i just get on the eliptical, turn up the ipod, and stay on the machine for an hour. And for that one hour I am alone, with myself and my thoughts, kinda like meditation. I don't talk to people at the gym, i don't answer my phone, nothing. It's all ME time. I use it to think about my day, my life, the things I want to change, etc.

Also, set some personal goals for yourself to both stimulate you and keep you busy. Currently i'm working on learning a 3rd language and losing 60lbs. Once i drop the weight i'm going to enroll in Krav Maga classes to boost self confidence.

The idea is to keep yourself busy....don't stare into that idiot box for hours just wasting life away. Turn the TV off and do something productive.

Go home and wash ALL the dishes in one day, wash them, dry them, and put them away. Then go out and get some paper plates, and plastic cups; just use those for a little while so you don't have to keep washing dishes, save that for guests or soemthing.

On the 7th day God created auto bill pay. As long as your finaces are in semi-order and you know your direct-deposit salary can cover your bills you should be ok here....and it gives you one less thing to worry about every month.

I have no idea how old you are, it was alluded to be 27-28 somewhere above, and if that is the case, then you are still VERY young. You can change alot in your life with little consequnce. Once you have kids that will all change becasue you won't be living for youself anymore, but for them. So do what you want to do now, don't wait. Make a list of things you want to change, and start changing them. Check them off when completed and soon you will see real progress.

At the age of 24 i felt like an old man, now at 26 i feel 16 again....it's ALL IN YOUR HEAD. You are only as old as you feel.

This turned out a bit long-winded so i'll wrap it up here.....just don't keep yourself stuck in the same routine. Change something today (or tomorrow :) ) and then run with those changes till you are where you want to be. Once you pick up momentum it will get easier.
posted by TheDude at 12:44 PM on June 1, 2006

You absolutely must stop with the ganja. I'm not against it in the general case, lots of my friends smoke, and enjoy it a lot. However its just such a disater for depression and intertia. You'll need all your energy to improve your mood, and regular weed will make that much much more difficult.

If you don't want to go to a therapist, then try doing it yourself. CBT is not rocket science, and anyway depends on your doing most of the work yourself. There are lots of good CBT books out there, and the techniques worked for me.

My advice would be to pick just those two for the moment. Give yourself permission not to worry about any of your other problems for a month or so. Baby steps. Try to take on too much and you will get nowhere.

Finally, after a slightly dictatorial post, don't get too down. Your achievements are real and impressive. Finding someone you want to spend your life with is massive, as is finding a career you like, and progressing in it. Wish I could say the same of myself, or most people I know. You seem to have some great reasons to feel proud of yourself.

Best of Luck
posted by Touchstone at 1:38 PM on June 1, 2006

Definately have to stop the drinking and the weed. I've done it and can vouch--- it might be just the thing that will tip the scales back for you.
posted by mykl at 3:46 PM on June 1, 2006

BTW you do know that pot is notorious for robbing one of motivation, right?

Are people unmotivated because they smoke... or do they smoke because they're unmotivated?
posted by ludwig_van at 5:11 PM on June 1, 2006

I've been in the same place. I wasn't sad or upset, but I lost all my motivation. I barely scraped by in life because I couldn't be bothered with working or cleaning, and it eventually progressed to not being able to shower or eat or leave the apartment. Part of my brain was constantly telling me I was stupid and lazy and that made it hard to seek help. How do you explain to a complete stranger that you can't even be bothered to brush your teeth and you deliberately alienated your friends so they'd stop asking if you're okay? Sometimes I had moments when I thought "I used to be smarter, my memory used to be better, I used to be curious, I used to work hard" and that did make me sad -- but the overall feeling was tired acceptance. I was in a relationship that made it hard to get help/support and I suspect that prolonged things. I never worked up the gumption to see a doctor because I was ashamed. Eventually I had a "better" day and I used it to get a small foothold. I slowly built everything back up and now I'm functioning again. I have to be very strict about my bed time and my meal times and I have to keep my schedule full. I'm scared that it's going to come back and I'll have to start all over again. I guess the point of this rambling story is that it might be possible for you to climb out of this without therapy or medication, but in my case it took a long time to reclaim my life and it still feels fragile.
posted by Marit at 5:16 PM on June 1, 2006 [2 favorites]

i feel like you. i get all my planned work (and then some) in 2/3 hours each day, and i have to stay 9 hours at work, just desiring to be in my home, doing anything else. then, when i get home, i'm so jaded that all i'll do is just sit at the computer, and let the hours pass by. ocasionally i will meet some friends and go have some booze, then i return home wasted, and i feel worse the morning after.

thus, everything on my calendar past the hour i leave work can be delayed for weeks when i'm in that mood. i will not clean up, i will not go to the grocer's, i will go to bed without having supper just because i don't feel like making it.

i try to break this mood by getting some things out of sight. seeing the floor of my room covered with dirty clothes will just bother, so i just put them on a bag and leave it in a corner. the next day i will pick all the papers on my table and trash them. the next day i will sort all the other sh*t on the room just dumping it in a drawer.

then, when i see it (just apparently) clean, i feel better with myself and start cleaning all the home for real this time, with very loud, energizing music, for all the afternoon/evening. i will feel better for some days, until i have some kind of contrariety, feel down, and the cycle starts again.

my best solution is to make these cycles as short as possible, just to see some changes in my life.

hope you feel better soon, and consider hiring a maid, as someone has already said. it could be a good kickstart. email me if you want me to elaborate.
posted by ArchEnemy at 5:32 AM on June 2, 2006

You really should stop with the pot and alcohol, and I'll tell you why. It relates to this idea of self-medicating. Essentially what that means is that pot and alcohol seem to be being used here in order to take away the bad feelings which you might otherwise have to face. Whether your bored and decide to smoke, or feel guilty about your bills or angry about your job or grossed out by the toilet, if you smoke or drink those feelings get replaced with being high. The thing is, those feelings are there for a reason, and are, in many cases, progressive: you may not be grossed out enough tonight to clean the toilet, but you might be tomorrow night if you don't just get high. If you want your life to change you need to let the mechanism which provides motivation for change, your dissatisfaction with the status quo, operate by cutting out the getting high.

(I would say the same thing if you played 6 hours of video games between work and bed or read trashy novels cover to cover every night or watched tv like a zombie, never moving from the couch.)
posted by OmieWise at 6:14 AM on June 2, 2006 [1 favorite]

It seems that we are on similar paths.

If you are serious beyond the point of posting to an unrelated forum, you must first stop taking recreational drugs. As you probably already know, alcohol is a hard drug. For people like us, drug use is just self-medicating with the wrong tool.

Then go see a shrink. I am also adverse to talking therapy but I am open to a pill that may bring my brain chemicals into some proper order.

In the meantime read about bipolar disorder and by all means, up your exercise!

My goal is to control my outlook through Yoga, weight lifting, bicycling, diet, and meditation. For me, a pill is a last resort, but one I am more than willing to do.

Good luck to you Sister!

Billy Burton

PS Email me direct if you'd like to continue this chat. bill AT bamph DOT com
posted by billyburton at 10:14 AM on June 2, 2006

Hey there, plenty of great comments here on a topic that plenty of us can relate to. It all got me thinking, which got me writing, and here is the result. I hope it can be of some help to some of you. It is a blog entry about what marijuana abuse did to my 'happiness levels' as such.
posted by Moose at 3:18 PM on June 5, 2006

the root cause of their depression is not the boredom with his or her job/life etc, nor the numbness they feel, but with their pot abuse.

I'm going to have to go 'head and disagree with you there.
posted by ludwig_van at 3:51 PM on June 5, 2006

I did like what you wrote, but you have no idea why anon seems depressed. You have a theory, but that's all.
posted by OmieWise at 5:43 AM on June 6, 2006

Moose, did you read the anon's post at all?

She's gone through major life changes, including loss of a pet, a big move, a new job. And things aren't working out for her. It really sounds like the pot (and drinking) are a response to the stress -- not cause of it.

Pot's almost certainly implicated in her low motivation. But there have been dozens of non-pot-smoking posts on ask.metafilter from folks who are unmotivated and frustrated about their jobs. I wouldn't say pot's the cause -- just an aggravating factor.

There's lots of good advice here -- including the advice to stop smoking. But it sure looks like anon's problems go way beyond drug use.

Also, dude, compare her writing to your drug-induced writing. See any differences? Hint: she's coherent. Maybe you were smoking more/better dope than she could get ahold of.
posted by croutonsupafreak at 7:03 AM on June 7, 2006

I find the suggestion that marijuana could be the "root cause" of someone's depression fairly ridiculous on its face, to be honest. That's not to say that it's a bad idea to stop smoking when one is in difficult circumstances or struggling with depression/motivation, etc.
posted by ludwig_van at 7:27 AM on June 7, 2006

Gee - suspiciously defensive responses here ;)

Look, on re-reading my post I may have been a little presumptuous when I stated that pot smoking was the root cause of Anon's depression - how the hell would I know? But I would be interested to know if this person was depressed BEFORE starting to smoke the gear everyday. And I think we are mostly in accordance that if you are depressed already then it would be wise to chill on the stuff.

I stand by my statement that 'You can't smoke pot all the time and expect not to suffer side-effects'. I have seen it over and over; it is hardly a world shaking revelation. The extent of the side effects differ, but they are always obvious to others if not to the daily smoker themselves.

And Ludwig_Van, but I must counter your opinion again with mine that smoking lots of pot absolutely can be the root cause of depression in some people – it just can.
posted by Moose at 8:09 PM on June 17, 2006

I don't know if you are still reading this, but . . .

Based on this post, and your other one, it sounds like you might have a bit of bipolar disorder going on here (obligatory IANAD).

Go to a psychiatrist or your general doctor and discuss this with him. Medication can help.
posted by necessitas at 7:54 AM on June 27, 2006

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