Thursday, January 26, 2017

How to Support a Significant Other With Depression

Hey, kids. I'd like to explain a few things about helping your partner with their depression. Please understand that you are not under any obligation to take care of them, but there are ways to support them. As stated in my introduction, I suffer from MDD or Major Depressive Disorder. This could be caused by abnormal activities in my neural circuits, which cause me to have persistently depressed moods, which affects my everyday life at least in tiny ways. Some days I cannot get out of bed. I tend to get a blank stare about me and I don't react as I normally would. These impaired moods can last from a day to months at a time, where I get terribly suicidal.

In terms of a relationship, I admit that this tends to be problematic. Sometimes I have trouble communicating with my partner and I get really upset for no apparent reason sometimes. It's important, in a relationship, to not take the symptoms of depression to heart because 9 times out of 10, your partner does not feel that way about you. My partner has had problems finding ways to help me out and often believes that his existence should be enough to cure my depression. While I'm less depressed around him, I can't necessarily be around him all the time to help my moods. The only person who is around me 24/7 is me, so the healing process has to start with me.

My counselors have told me that I have ingrained a way of thinking so deep into my existence that it has imprinted my id to make me think that nothing matters in the end. That my existence means nothing and I should accept that, and kill myself, so not to be a burden on other people because I am a piece of human garbage. Depending on your partner's way of thinking, I encourage you to be positive around your partner. This may help them change their ways of thinking to start a healing process.

You have to give the person space when they are feeling down. If they are having a "bad day" (as I call it), it is best to give them space to work out what they are feeling. Don't get me wrong, it is still best to be supportive of them and speak to them when they are speaking to you. Just take into account that if they aren't talking to you because of their bad day, it is not because of you or anything that you did.

Personally, I self-harm to escape my lack of feeling anything because it makes me feel like a human, when I feel pain. It makes me feel normal. If your partner has a problem with such things, you can encourage healthy coping mechanisms. "Let's take a walk.", "Let's have lunch." if you are around them. If not, you could encourage them to write in a journal instead or have them call a friend. If these things fail, do not get upset at them for relapsing into old habits because it's not something they can necessarily control.

If you want more information on the subject, I've included a few links to different websites that I have found helpful:
On Coping Mechanisms:
Helping your Partner:

And always, the National Suicide Hotline:1-800-273-8255

All statements expressed here are things that I have collected over the years and from my own experience. They are not equal to every situation because depression varies from person to person.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

In Which Misophonia Hinders Everyday Life

I'd like to start off with something very near and dear to my heart. I suffer from misophonia. Most people do not think that this is an actual disorder, within the brain. It's actually quite common disorder amongst individuals, with fewer than 200,000 cases in the US per year. I happen to be one of those 200,000. This disorder tends to hinder many things in my life. It's something that I have learned to deal with and accept, but it can be quite troubling. 

When I was younger, the earliest I can remember this actually bothering me was one day when my mother and I were napping together on a couch. The sounds of her breathing/snoring infuriated me to the point where I had to go to my room and cry. I would always get extremely angry at my brother for eating his food loudly, crunching and slurping. It'd sometimes get to the point where I would freak out on him. His breathing bothered me too. Heavy breathing, eating, drinking, small noises here and there would either infuriate me, cause me to cry, or at the worst case, vomit. The vomiting has only happened a few times of which I can remember. 

In high school, once I got an iPod (thanks, mama), I could put in my ear buds through my jacket and not listen to anything in my surroundings. This had a substantial effect to my grades, but it wasn't the only reason I had problems in high school. Because this was my only escape to the torture of everyday sounds that didn't seem to effect anyone else at the time, I usually escaped in music and still do to this day. As a college student, I've explained this thing to certain friends that understand why I'm anxious about certain noises. I've explained to my fiancée that I can't sit with him when he eats, if I am not eating to distract myself. He understands. Even writing this and imagining certain noises as I write them (to describe), I'm noticing my heart pumping more and my stomach churning ever so slightly. 

An experience I had recently, today actually, I was in my Intro to Theatre class. I enjoy this class quite thoroughly because the course content is very interesting. Anyway! A person behind me was eating and that made me really, really anxious. I found myself cringing everytime that person would make a crunching noise, whilst eating their chips. I couldn't listen to the lecture going on in front of me. I couldn't take notes. All I could do was listen to each crunching noise behind me and try not to burst out crying. I didn't want to put my earbuds in, because it would've been disrespectful to the professor but HOLY SHIT I COULDN'T DEAL WITH THAT SOUND. 

To be specific, the sounds, to me, hurt my ears. They physically HURT me. It feels like knives stabbing my ears. My chest feels tight. I feel a lump in my throat. My stomach churns. Then, I'll either get angry or cry a LOT. I get terribly anxious and I want to run away to hide somewhere. And to think that other people have to deal with this disorder, it makes me feel so awful for those people because it may be worse than the reactions I have.

My apologies for how short this is, but I cannot write anymore about this topic because it's making me sick. 

Anyway, if you want to read more about this disorder, WebMD has a very helpful explanation of the disorder:

Music to Enhance Reading Experience

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Introduction: In Which Cheyenne Thoroughly Embarrasses Herself.

I’m going to provide a small introduction for the first part of this blog. 

My name is Cheyenne, nice to meet you all. I am 18 years old, and attend the University of Virginia’s College at Wise for my undergraduate degree in the major of Art and minor of Pre-Law. My interests are anthropology, law, art, and political science. This blog is a place of acceptance for all people, despite political and religious standpoints. All that I ask is that you extend the same respect to others and be a decent human being. I suffer from from Major Depressive Disorder and Misophonia. I may write about both of those topics occasionally because they are close to my heart. 

I'd like to make clear that this is the most that you will know about me, as far as extremely important information goes. I do not intend to write about those who are in my life, as I am already taking enough risk with my own identity. 

My goal for this blog is to inform others of facts, and occasionally my opinion. I intend to give advice as well. If you have questions, please send them to my email: