Mastermind

Relapse 舊病復發

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By Illustrator, Koala Bear

Let’s say there is a person who once had a surgery relating to his stomach, so after the surgery, he will be having higher risks to get stomach-related diseases, and so this is the logic. The same goes with depression. I have been reading a lot recently about depression, it’s quite affirmative that the recovered depression patients can have a relapse, triggered by something that happens later on in their life, such as an event, a person, an environment, whatever that is that sets off his potential genes of depression again.

讓我舉一例子,一位曾經進行胃手術的人。手術後,他有較高的風險在將來的日子患上有關胃的疾病。我想說的就這樣的邏輯,請將這邏輯應用在抑鬱症。我最近讀了很多關於抑鬱症的文章,相當肯定的是,抑鬱症患者好有可能因為被後來在他們的生活發生的事情引致復發,比如說因為一個事件,一個人,一個環境。不管是什麼,反正就是有一樣東西又一次觸發了他患上抑鬱症的潛在基因。

 

To do some objective speaking, I am much better these two weeks than how I was in January and February. Yet there is this 1 thing I am very worried about, relapse. Earlier this week, there was some time when I suddenly returned to shedding tears, frightened at my unexpected suicidal thoughts which got turned on again by a series of nightmares instructing me different means to end my life. I am afraid that I will go back to the more depressive past, when I think I am coming out of it.

客觀來講,我這兩個星期的情況,比我在一月和二月要好得多了。然而,我很擔心這一個東西,就是復發。本週早些的時候,我突然回到以前一般似的掉眼淚,我嚇壞了,有一系列的噩夢指示我可以用不同的手段來結束我的生命,反正就再次意外地使我萌生自殺的念頭。我怕我會回到我抑鬱比較嚴重的過去;我明明以為我是在離開抑鬱症的途中。

 

You may say that I am simply thinking too much to try to assume a future relapse, and I know that the most rational thing to do is to live in that natural rhythm, with that live-for-the-presence attitude. So it comes back to my anxious character, when I worry about the future a lot. So to make me adapt to this ideal attitude is simply rather impossible. Not just because I have anxiety that comes with my clinical depression, but anxiety is also part of my personality. So I decide to try to reduce my possibility of relapse to its minimal level, as it is said that ‘prevention is better than a cure’.

你可能會說,我只是想得太多,不應試圖預計自己未來的復發。而且我知道,最理性的是有著自然的節奏去生活,有著活在當下的態度。所以起因是我著急的性格吧,我太擔心未來了。因此,要我採取這種理想的態度相當不可能。不只是因為我有隨我的臨床抑鬱症而來的焦慮症,但焦慮也是我個性的一部分。所以,我決定盡量減少我復發的可能性,要復發的可能性在最低的水平,因為「預防勝於治療」。

 

Obviously psychiatrists will only make clear that those obvious preventions of relapse will help, such as having a good living habit and exercise regularly. These preventions apply even if someone has never had depression before, but just want to avoid ever getting it. I think there is more than that when it comes to mentality. So I tried to look into people’s writing where different people give their believes for staying away from prevention. Some lawyers with depression have come together to write about how much depression hurts, but they still choose to return to that intense, long-hour working legal career. They see that the solution to avoid getting depression was not to be a strong perfectionist, to say that as lawyers they can still stay in the business, but are to be less self-critical and so not to start to feel so down. Err, perfectionist is a personality rooted in me already. Then I find mostly depression patients talk about what to do as patients and their loved ones, rather than talking about the prevention of relapse. I have come to a religious reading on depression which annoys me further. It tells patients to stay humble, to change their personality.

顯然,精神科醫生只會願意確實的說那些非常明顯的幫助,所以復發的預防措施就是,比如有一個良好的生活習慣和經常運動的規律。這些預防措施對甚至從未有抑鬱症的人,就是說純粹想避免抑鬱的人都一樣有用。我認為涉及到心態心理這東西,預防措施不止於此。所以,我試圖尋找到不同的人們於書寫中所理解的預防措施。有抑鬱症律師走到一起寫抑鬱症怎樣帶來多少傷害,但他們還是選擇回到那個緊湊,長小時工作制的法律行業。他們看到的以避免讓抑鬱症的解決方案,是不要做強烈的完美主義者,說律師可以繼續在這行業,但要少點自我批評,因為這樣下去就會情緒低落。可是我完美主義的性格已深深烙印在我身上。我又發現抑鬱症病人不太說預防措施,多數說病人們和身邊的人該做的事。有一討論抑鬱症讀的宗教書籍讓我更困擾。它告訴病人要經常謙虛,要改變自己的個性。

 

How am I to change that natural automatic reaction each time when I receive some negative comments from many people, where I feel trapped by getting self-critical and want to put my head down and apologise, accepting that I am the wrongdoer for all? It may be very beneficial if I can get rid of my personality, but I wonder, is my personality really that problematic that I just have to learn and adopt another personality? After all, I never did any great harm to anyone in my life.

我怎麼當我收到許多人的一些負面評論,每一次我都感到越來越被困於自我批評中,並希望把我的頭下垂和道歉說我是錯誤的始作俑者。這就是我的自然的自動反應,要如何改變?如果我可以擺脫我的性格,可能是非常有益的,但實際上我想,是我的性格真的有問題,我非要學習和採用另一種個性?畢竟,我從來在我的人生中,我從沒有對任何人造成什麼大的傷害。

 

Maybe before I talk more on relapse, I have already truly become useless. I want to continue my legal studies, but now I find studying is a thing that is too hard to take, so as getting a job. I question myself what is the point to have worked so hard to get a law degree, when I find either studying or working is too hard to take. All I can do is to wait for time to pass, and I am scared that I stay like this for the rest of my life.

也許在我談論復發以前,我已經真正成為無用的人了。我想繼續我的法律學習,但現在我覺得學習太難以接受,找工作亦一樣。我問自己辛辛苦苦拿到了法律學位有什麼用,因為我發現無論是學習還是工作都太難以接受。我所能做的就是等待時間過去,我很害怕,我的餘生會這樣。

 

In the end of this thought-process, I come to this conclusion that maybe even my existence is problematic, and is wrong. I shared this thought with my psychiatrist. With no surprise, he claimed that I am still a depression patient, and I am to continue with my medication and weekly appointment with him, to stay patient. When my mood was getting better but then it went uncontrolled again, to keep staying calm is not as easy as it sounds.

在這思想過程要結束的時候,我得出這樣的結論,就是也許連我的存在也是有問題的,而且是錯誤的。我與我的精神科醫生分享了這個想法。不出所料,他聲稱,我仍然是一個抑鬱症患者,我要繼續我的用藥和每週見他,要保持耐心。當我的心情本來是越來越好,但隨後又不受控制,要保持冷靜並不像聽起來那麼容易。

 

To end this post, I want to move on from myself but to make this point:  many people still think that depression is caused by a person being not mentally tough enough, or not as tolerant to pressure than others. In other words, many think we are not mentally capable . I will recall that genes is one of those important factors causing depression, as confirmed by psychiatrists and other academics. Let’s say there is a person who never smokes nor lives around those who smoke, have very good healthy habits throughout his life and a chilled mind. Yet, if I then tell you that the heavy smoker doesn’t get the lung cancer but this healthy guy gets it instead, you can accept it quite naturally, without criticising the healthy guy but expresses, well, sometimes life is just like that. Now, apply it to depression and other mentally sick patients.

要結束這篇文章了,我想離開講我自己去說這一點:許多人仍然認為,抑鬱症是因為一個人精神上不夠強,或者受壓能力比其他人低而造成的。換句話說,很多人認為我們是精神上能力不足。記得,基因是導致抑鬱症的重要因素之一,已由精神科醫生和其他學者所證實。比方說,某人沒有抽煙,周圍的人沒有吸煙,有很好的健康的生活習慣和輕鬆的態度。然而,如果我再告訴你,而不是某吸煙者得到肺癌,但這健康的人有,你能自然的接受它,不批評這健康的人,但表示,有時候人生就是這樣。現在,請將同樣的感覺應用於抑鬱症和其他精神病患者身上。

❤ Lala

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