Hans Meijer BACP Accredited Counsellor / Psychotherapist Oxfordshire OX11

Depression and Anxiety

If you are feeling depressed or anxious the world is a dark place and you may well feel there is little hope things will get better. Your GP may have offered antidepressants but you feel reluctant to take them.

'Guidelines from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) state clearly that for mild to moderate depression, pills should not be the first resort. Talking therapies work better in the long-term and there are no risky side-effects' (Guardian 5 March 2011)


Depression and Anxiety #01

How can counselling help?

I believe there is hope. Counselling offers you an experience of someone being there for you; someone who listens without judging whatever it is you need to say. It may help you come to terms with both what you’ve lost or never had and free yourself from oughts and shoulds that don't belong to you. You will start to see yourself from a different perspective; noticing the difference between what you were made to believe about yourself and who you really are.

This process of reflection, of finding yourself, is often painful but helps you develop your ability to be in touch with your feelings, accepting all of them as yours, and using them to guide you as opposed to your emotions taking control over yourself.

If you want to talk contact me for an intitial session.


Who gets depressed?

About one in 10 of us develop some form of mild depression in our lives. Moderate and severe depression develops in one in 50. Severe depression is disabling; you may feel as if you are drawn into a deep black hole and think you will never get out of it. You might feel overwhelmed by sadness or feel nothing at all. Your moods take control over your life and your sleep pattern is disrupted. You may think no-one can help you and have suicidal thoughts. Friends may get impatient and tell you to get on with life. For severe depression a combination of medication and talking therapies is probably the best option.


Why do people get depressed?

Traumatic events such as loss of health or a loved one may trigger a depression. Mild depression makes us stop and think whether we now need to change our goal in life. It may no longer be achievable without our loved one or good health. Most people, especially those who can talk things over with their friends or family will overcome this kind of depression. Most will benefit from counselling at this point since one may not want to discuss everything with friends or family.


Why do some of us become severely depressed?

Suffering is part of life. We start to learn how to deal with it as a very early age. Parents, family, carers, teachers, they all help us develop our ability to regulate emotions resulting from discomfort. Our genetic make up plays a role as well but there is increasing scientific evidence that, unless there is obvious physical damage, child rearing is fundamental in the development of our ability to manage our moods. Unfortunately and inevitably things sometimes go wrong whilst we grow up and your experience will shape your expectations: you come to believe that how it was it will be. ‘Life is unbearable.’

Feel free to contact me me for an initial conversation. All communications are treated confidentially


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