Winston Churchill described his episodes of depression as a "black dog." It's a fitting image-- a state that follows inexorably, and as black suggests, whose pain drains energy, optimism, and even physical well being. When you're experiencing depression, it may feel like it has no end, it's hopeless to address whatever it seems to be about, and who has the energy, or can focus their energy, anyway?
We don't entirely know what causes depression, but we do know it's much more involved than just sadness. It's a condition with many physical components: genetics, some medical conditions, some medications. It involves changes in neurotransmitters, and physical changes to parts of the brain involved with memory, emotions, and relay of information. Even basic temperament factors in.
As if that weren't enough, our earlier life experience and present circumstances weigh in. Did you lose someone important as a child? Have you experienced trauma as a child or later? Do you confront fairly unrelenting stress? All of these things don't necessarily, but can contribute to depression.
If we're working together, we will consider factors contributing to your depression including previous trauma, and ways to address thinking, behavior, and circumstances.
We aim for your experiencing less sense of being alone, defeated, hopeless and for your experiencing a greater sense of faith in your own abilities and possibilities, with relief from pain.
When we think of trauma, does the picture of a war veteran come to mind? Or someone who survived a terrible automobile accident? These are certainly traumatic, and some, but not all, people who endure these sorts of violent experiences will develop post-traumatic stress syndrome. This is "big T" trauma.
For the majority of people who experience trauma, it is "little t" trauma. This involves experiences that distress us deepy, but which others may or may not see as obviously being a source of long-term distress. We may absorb these traumas from family, school, or other situations. Can you think of something that happened perhaps in one of these settings long ago that still brings a wince or some of the original emotions? This commonplace experiencing of past unease demonstrates how trauma operates in our memory and feeling. It is information that tends to be stored as it was first experienced with the original feelings nad meanings. Non-traumatic memories tend to be given thought-through meanings and reproduce less painful feelings.
Unresolved traumatic experiences can lead us to feelings and behaviors which are unmatched to the present moment and which may undermine us despite our best intentions.
If you and I determine that you have unresolved trauma in your background which is causing you additional distress, we can address it with a variety of techniques including possibly eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (emdr), and other approaches to increase total self-awareness and the ability to make choices for new thoughts, feelings, and actions.
Kathy Nash M.A., L.P.C. License #882 phone: 307-760-5665
1277 North 15th email:
Laramie, Wyoming 82070 wyowellnessworks.com