An Honest Look at Lindsay’s Depression

Guest Post by Lindsay of Lee La La.
DISCLAIMER: This post is about Lindsay’s battle with depression and experience with anti-depressants.  We know that depression is a devastating and serious disease, and we are in no way suggesting that what worked for Lindsay will work for you.  Please know that we are sensitive to your personal situation and know that everyone must do what works best for them and those they love–whether that be with medication or not.
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Hi Little Miss Momma friends.

I am Lindsay, the girl behind the blog,

Lee La La

I am a Momma.

I am a Wife.

I am a so called writer.

I am an occasional crafter.

I am a fashion lover.

It’s nice to meet you!

I am so excited to be here today.

Guest posting for Ashley is a BIG DEAL for me.
Not only is this girl a real life friend that I hold dear to my heart,
but Ashley was the first blog I stumbled across that actually spoke to me.
Spoke to me personally. Spoke to me professionally.
Ashley is an inspiration to me and after a few real life heart to hearts,
she encourages me to NEVER be ashamed of my past, but to embrace it.
A past that has left me with quite a few scars.
So today, I am going to embrace my past and share with you my story.
A post I wrote months ago but haven’t had the courage to publish.

Raw. Vulnerable. Me.

What better way to share then in the company of you all.

……..

My story:

What do you do when your life comes crashing down on you?
When you’ve hit rock bottom and are not sure you will ever make it out?
Believe it or not,
this was my reality.
Some of you know a little bit of my story.
For so long, I blocked my past out of my mind.
It wasn’t until I reached my college years,
when it ALL caught up to me.
I began spiraling out of control.
From the outside, I paint a pretty picture.
I let everyone think I was fine, happy, content.
Inside though, I was dying.
Miserable. Unhappy. Lost. Confused.
I shut out my best friends.
I shut out my family.
I searched for love in all the wrong places.
I made bad decisions.
I had no ambition.
I was living a huge lie.

For some they may have sought counseling.

For me, the BEST solution seemed to be medicine.

An anti depressant to be exact.
My doctors believed this would be the answer to all my problems.
“It would get me over this hump”- their exact words.
At the time, I was numb, yet desperate, so I obliged.

Fast forward to May 2007.
The tragic loss of a close friend…
I hit my breaking point.
I wasn’t sure I’d make it out of this one.
So my doctors solution?
Increase your medication.
I obliged.

I became a pro at putting a bandaid on my problems and moving on.

Eventually though, the hurt and pain catches up to you.

Scars begin to show through.

{via here}

…………..

Obviously I found my way out of a deep dark hole.

My life today is more blessed than I ever thought possible.
But you want to know something?
It wasn’t the medicine that got me “over the hump”.
It was A LOT of prayer.
Trusting Jesus.

So for all you that may be struggling in a mountain of darkness,
have faith.
Be patient.
NEVER give up hope.

UPDATE:
I have recently gotten off of this “medication” but it was a daunting task, after being dependent on it for 10 years.
I woke up one day and was determined to free myself from the medicine.
I was tired of feeling emotionless.
I wanted to do LIFE on my own.

The withdrawal symptoms are intense.

Definitely not something they tell you about.

I got through it. Barely, but I did.

Instead of hanging onto pain and suffering, I have learned to hang on HIM to get me through.

“God will never give you more than you can handle”

******
Ashley here.
And I just want to say a few quick words about my friend Lindsay.  She is proof that God sends certain people to be in your life at just the right time–Real life people that remind you that you’re not alone with your feelings, your worries, your stresses and your triumphs.  Thanks for being my real friend Linds. Love you.

Lindsay also has a fabulous shop with some of my favorite jewelry ever.
And today she is giving y’all a MONDO discount–like HUGE!
40% OFF

40% OFF anything in the Lee La La shop
code: HELLOFALL

Shop Lee La La here.

Ashley Stock
I'm Ashley. Sometimes I craft, occasionally I cook, everyday I write, and I'm always Momma. This is my blog. I keep it real while still seeing the rainbows and butterflies in all of life's lessons.
Ashley Stock
Ashley Stock
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Comments

  1. thank you lindsey, thank you from the bottom of my heart for putting in words what I have not been able to do, this helped, this helped alot xxxxx

  2. wow. what a powerful story. thank you lindsey for opening up your heart, your past. and your life. i know this story will bless & touch many lives. so thankful for such a BIG & Powerful God. :)

  3. What a brave woman you are. I am so glad God helped you overcome the need for the medications. Blessings.

  4. Thankd you for sharing. I have been though the same hurt with the loss of my best friend, my brother. I have never shared my pain, but I might now. Thank you!

  5. Thank you for sharing. He has also helped me get out of a deep dark hole. God is good!

  6. amazing story!!! God is so awesome. There is so much strength in “kingdom connections” and relationships are SO important. Feeling warm fuzzies inside for your friendship. God is so good…

  7. Wow. Your story really hits home. I’m so happy that you have found the true cure for the pain, which is God, not the anti depressants. Thanks for sharing your story, it brings a sense of calm to my day knowing that there are other women like me out there with struggles and that we don”t have to have everything figured out by now. You have a beautiful family and you are blessed. Thanks to you as well Ashley!

    Elizabeth

  8. Ohhhh Linds, I’m so proud of you for a.) putting yourself out there (or here!) b.) admitting your faults and failures and c.) taking the meds OUT of your life. YOU ARE AMAZING. That’s why I love you! And PS – can I come join you for that Parenting class at your church? For real.

  9. Nice to meet you Lindsey. Thank you for being so brave and sharing your story.
    Once again I am reminded of the reason I read LMM daily. It’s refreshing and inspiring and introduces me to amazing people. Thanks to both of you… Now where is my credit card, looks like I got a discount code that could use some work…
    Happy Wednesday!!

  10. I can so relate with you on so many different levels. Your story is amazing and prayer is a powerful thing. I know this will touch many who have dealt with the same things. xoxo

  11. I just got off my meds last summer after being addicted for 10 years. It was ROUGH! I enjoyed your story and knowing there were others out there like me.

  12. Oh I can so relate! Thank you SO much for sharing that. I think more people need to talk about depression. It is VERY real. God is SO good! He will take care of us! Thank you, thank you for sharing! It’s so important to TALK about these things. :)
    I share a little bit of my struggle here –> http://cantelmofamily.blogspot.com/2011/10/i-see-every-sparrow-that-falls.html

  13. LOVE you Linds!! XOXO!! :)

  14. love lindsay’s blog. she is so beautiful and honest! great post.

  15. great, inspiring story. and BEAUTIFUL jewelry!

  16. Wow. I felt like I was reading a story about me. I too have had put on bandaids on past “issues” and when they fall off (God’s pulls them off!), I find an infected wound that really needs to be cleaned and healed by the Great Physician. Thank you for sharing your story and being so authentic. What a blessing. Praise God for healing!

  17. What a powerful story Lindsay! Thank you for sharing and showing how powerful trusting in God’s love really is!
    Hugs friend!

  18. Congratulations on your continual recovery, Lindsay. What a strong woman you are to put it all out there!

    I would just like to take a moment to advocate for the use of anti-depressants in patients that need them. For some of us, it is not possible to pray the disease of depression away. It is a serious medical condition that requires close physician monitoring. I feel anti-depressants are viewed negatively in this post and for myself and many other people, the medications (in combination with other therapies) are not negative. They have saved our lives. They have corrected the unhealthy brain chemistry and have made us healthy once again. I congratulate you on your success without medication, but please do not speak negatively of medications that saves countless lives daily. For many, it gives us back the zest for life we once had, and does not make us “emotionless”.

  19. Thank you so much for sharing Lindsay. I think you’re doing super amazing!

    I went through something similar with antidepressants {for a much shorter time period though}, so I understand that aspect completely. I think in my case my depression was more situational and less of a chemical imbalance, which is why I had a negative reaction to it. But I do know that for some people the medication is the only way to actually correct a very real medical condition.

  20. I read your story…and it is quite simillar to mine….really hits a chord with me. I chose the same option: to try anti depressants….It worked for me…as did expressing how I felt. Ingrained in my brain is ” “God will never give you more than you can handle”

    Thank you for sharing.
    Amen.

  21. Love Lindsay and her awesome blog!! What an amazing story of God’s grace and power to conquer even our darkest hours…such a HUGE blessing today. Ashley, thanks for always keeping it real and sharing from your heart and highlighting others who do the same. You both are being used for great things…hugs!

  22. GO LINDSAY GO! Love your desire to encourage others by your story all while giving glory to God. I do believe he places trials and circumstances in our lives so that when we’re on the other side, we’re able to reach back and lend a hand to others facing the same thing. Thank you for being vulnerable! xoxo Bri

  23. I’ve been on antidepressants since I was young too. I really dont think they do anything at all and the most recent one i’ve been on makes me feel sooooo much more anxious. I one day want to kick the pills too but think I need to find happiness in my job first : / good for you!

  24. such a powerful and beautiful story. thank you for being brave and sharing it.

  25. Thank you so much for sharing so candidly about your battle and triumph over depression. While our situations are different, I’ve been struggling a lot lately and it is reassuring to be reminded that I am not alone.

  26. Lindsay, thank you for sharing your story, it can’t have been easy but I’m sure it will help others.

    I have to agree with Lee’s comment, anti de-presents are a valid and useful medication for tackling depression. I’ve been on mine for a few years now, it took a while to find the right ones and the best dose, but I have finally found what works for me. I know without doubt I couldn’t have carried on the way I was, the meds have saved my life and I’m grateful every single day.

    Sadly not everyone feels they can reach out to God, but they must remember they are not alone and other solutions are out there.

  27. Posts like this scare me, and quite frankly, are dangerous. I’m very glad for you, Lindsay, that God and Jesus “cured” you, but for the millions of others who have chronic mental disorders, stories like this encourage going off medications. But for me personally, my anti-depressants are the same as insulin to a diabetic. I either take them or die–it is just that simple.

    I STRONGLY urge you to change the title of this post to “An Honest Look At MY Depression”

    It feels like you are saying that because you believed harder, or had more faith, God healed you, while leaving me to suffer. I know that is not your intention, but that’s what it feels like your message is. For some, depression hits for a period of time and then you get past it–a bit like a cold or a kidney infection. For others, it is a debilitating disease that has no cure, has life-changing effects, and often devastates the lives of everyone who knows you.

    Good luck to you, sincerely, and good luck to you too Ashley. I hope you both gain more readers than you lose today. For your readers who like me have a chronic mental condition:
    DO NOT GO OFF YOUR MEDICATIONS WITHOUT YOUR DOCTOR’S ADVICE!!!!!

    • Dear Kimmy,

      I am sorry beyond words that this post hurt you, that was not its intention at all. Lindsay and I wanted to share her story, knowing full well that everyone has their own and we all must do what works best for us and those we love. I also VERY much agree with you–no one should ever try to go off their medication without consulting their doctor–nor do I think those with depression should ever feel like they need to go off their medication. I know how devasting and heartbreaking the effects of depression are on the one sufferring and for those they love–and I in NO way believe that one should subject themselves to such effects if medication is helping ease the pain. I believe Lindsay got to a point in her life where she felt they were not helping her in the way she needed–but thats Lindsays story so I won’t tell it for her. I also took your suggestion, and have changed the title of this post to reflect that this is in fact, Lindsays story, and not everyone elses.

      Kimmy, I am so glad you shared your story, for other readers out there who may share your sentiments. I hope you and they know that we are in no way trying to discount the use of medication to treat what we know to be a serious and chronic mental disorder. We support you 100% and know that you are making the right choice to find the most peace in your life. Please know this to be true and I apologize for any insensitivity that was projected from my end.

      With much love and understanding,

      ashley

    • Thanks for sharing, Kimmy, I absolutely agree with your comment.

  28. wow Ash. I know depression is a very serious thing and I also know that your and Lindsey’s heart would never be to intentionally hurt anyone. I have been on medication myself for the past month and I know first hand now, that this can be such a painful and lonely condition to have. I know I share my story on my blog as well in order to not feel alone, and so others know they are not alone either. I know that was both of your intentions as well. Don’t beat yourself up too much, trust your intention in it all and also rectifying the situation with speed and class. Keep encouraging and being real, the world needs it!

  29. battling depression and being in the mental health field myself, i can clearly see the two points of view presented. i’ve seen many people giving medication when they shouldn’t have, and i’ve seen many people go without when they have a chemical imbalance that is left untreated. i don’ t know why i feel the need to express that, it’s just that sometimes i feel that people who don’t understand medication think that no one needs it, and those who do understand it think that everyone needs it. does that make sense? in treating depression, one has to define where it’s coming from, otherwise you end up treating the symptom and not the cause. this leaves people wondering why they’re still suffering when they’re doing what the doctors/therapists are telling them. medication is only one of many treatments available, and how lucky are we to live in a time where we have so many options! it makes me so sad that someone just told lindsey that she needed to increase her medication without thinking, “hmm….perhaps there are other alternatives?” like a good professional should have done. but alas, even we professionals are human and often do what we shouldn’t.

    in my own battle, i’ve struggled with the idea of perhaps i don’t need it to perhaps i’m just chemically imbalanced. but whatever the reason, i know i feel better when i take it. i know i can handle things better and i’m not on the verge of tears all the time. that to me, is the biggest thing. to be able to be okay no matter what life throws at me. it’s a tool, and when used appropriately, can be very useful. but it’s one of so many. :) god bless those who look at their lives and say, “enough of suffering, i’m ready to do something about it.” that, to me, is the best medicine of all.

  30. Lovely post! I’m sure it wasn’t Ashley or Lindsay’s intentions to hurt anyone in this post. But I’m sure happy Kimmy stood up and shared her story. Everyone who battles with depression battles with it in a different way. I have been on anti-depressants for about two years now and would one day like to not rely on them. But we’ll see down the road if that’s what’s best for me. I love how people feel comfortable enough to share their stories in the comment section. And I would like to commend Ashley, Lindsay and Kimmy for sharing theirs and for not taking a misunderstanding to the extreme (as in handling it like adults). :)

  31. stephanie says:

    Lindsey,

    THANK YOU, Thank You, thank YOU! It took strength and courage to put those words to screen.

    I battle each and every day to be ‘normal’ and to not feel this need for medicine. I too was taking anti-depressants and slowly but surely was upped and upped by my ‘dr’ too. Last spring I finally had enough and decided that 10+ years was all I could take. I slowly was able to ween myself off meds altogether. Don’t get me wrong, I am fully aware of how hard and severe the process is. I can’t tell you the months it took to feel again.

    For me, medication is the easy way. I have recently come back to church and I wholeheartedly agree with you! For the first time in my adult life, I am coming to know peace. Yes, I still have symptoms of anxiety and depression; but I also have this amazing sense of peace and through prayer and reflection I am able to stand stronger on my own. Reading your story felt like another sign if you will that I’m not crazy and the path I’ve chosen is right for me. Thank you. All the best.

    • Stephanie-I am going to have to disagree with you respectfully on behalf of myself and every other man, woman, or child out there struggling with depression or anxiety (or any other mental health condition). Medication is NOT the “easy” way. For many, we’ve tried it all-God, herbal remedies, diet/exercise, therapy, etc, etc. Many have suffered longer than needed because of trying to fix something that they may not be able to fix. I don’t think that God gives us problems we can’t handle, but I also think that God gives us solutions in different ways. No one would ever tell a cancer patient to pray their cancer away and refuse life saving treatment. No one would tell a cancer patient that chemo, radiation, and surgical intervention are the “easy” way out. Mental illnesses are just as lethal as cancer, so the treatment deserves the same respect. Doing whatever it takes to handle whatever it is that ails you takes guts, hard work, and courage. Remember, everyone out there is fighting a battle…

  32. Lindsay Lee says:

    Thank you Ashley, for speaking my mind exactly. In NO WAY did I mean to offend anyone. I was simply stating MY STORY and what worked best for ME. I am in no way against medication, as it helped me for MANY years. Every person is different and the road taken, depends on ones circumstance. I simply wanted to share my heart, in hopes that I let one other girl know, she is NOT ALONE.

    Thanks for all the heartfelt comments. Much love to you all.
    xo Lindsay

  33. Thank you, Ashley, so much for changing the title of Lindsay’s post. I do think we all have our own paths to walk in life, and for some it’s to go left and for others to go right. And all the hundreds of directions in between :) I do feel it’s safer from a LEGAL standpoint for all involved with the title change…. (Remember the McDonald’s “hot” coffee incident, lol.)

    I should have said this earlier, because I strongly feel this way: the idea of perfection should never be endorsed, as it is impossible. I feel this regardless of being a Christian, but since I am, I believe Jesus was the Perfect One, and while we can TRY to be like Jesus, we all have our bad days ;P

    I read a book this past summer about the idea of perfection, that it’s a pressure unique to women, and hand-in-hand with this is the shame of knowing we’re not perfect. We can’t enjoy having friends over because we forgot to straighten the towels in the guest bathroom, or have family over for Thanksgiving because our table isn’t large enough to accommodate everyone. The reality is, your friends don’t care if you have a purple dinosaur living in your guest bathroom, and your family will remember the time together, not that the kids and one adult had to sit around the coffee table to eat.

    I read the comments in an article by the same author last week on her blog about the shame we feel as parents, and a commenter asked about the shame of NOT being a parent—and that again made me realize: there’s no way to win! The only way out of this trap of trying to be perfect and failing is having the courage to say: “I’m not perfect, here are my flaws” and Lindsay, that is EXACTLY what you did! I applaud you for it, sincerely. It takes courage to tell the world something we are ashamed of, but that is the only way to get rid of the shame!

    The author (I meant to tell you her name earlier, it’s Brene Brown, her site is “OrdinaryCourage.com” and the book I read was “I Thought It Was Just Me (but it isn’t): Telling the Truth About Perfectionism, Inadequacy, and Power”) pointed out that SHAME is what separates us as women, when in fact, it is SHAME that unifies us! I may feel shame about my car being dirty and you may feel shame about reading just one story to your child at night instead of 20. But we all feel shame.

    Frankly, I’m tired of it. I have it clearly marked on my site that life is just too hard trying to be perfect all the time. I love the AUTHENCITY pledge on OrdinaryCourage.com, it’s at the bottom of my site, and easily found on Mrs. Brown’s site. If we can have these open, honest conversations about difficult topics, I think that we’ll find we have more in common, and that in general, the world can be made into a happier place.

    So please, Ashley and Lindsay, don’t shy away from these DIFFICULT topics in the future. I would rather know about your bout with depression than see a picture of your perfectly cleaned bathroom any day!!

  34. This is such an encouraging and inspiring post! With God ALL things are possible. It is an AMAZING accomplishment for Lindsey to have overcome the battle of depression with Jesus. What an extraordinary testimony she shared. Thanks Ashley!! This is by far one of my favorite posts in blogland.

    ♥Jazmin

  35. I wanted to say that I can see both sides as well. I live with depression and have been on and of meds. I have been on them for 3 years now and feel so much better. I wanted to make the point that all anti-depressants do not make you emotionless. Lindsey, you mentioned feeling that way in your post, and I know this is a common complaint from some anti-depressant users. I just wanted to say it is not the case for everyone. I still experience the full range of emotions, I just don’t go so far that I can’t come back. I actually just went through a severely stressful time in my life and started to fall into a deep depression despite being on medication. But, I believe because I was on it, I was able to recognize the signs and steer my way back to a more level path.

    I am also a Christian and am growing like crazy in my knowledge of the Lord right now. I rely on Him fully….and pray for all the ways I don’t : ) I understand the feeling of thinking someone is saying, “if you just pray hard enough” or “just believe enough” that your depression (or what have you) will be changed. I am currently standing in that battle over part of my church believing my daughter’s medical issues could be healed if only I prayed right. I love the people who are telling me this and know they mean the very best for me. We are all just SO different. And I am in total agreement that it is WONDERFUL that this discussion can be open, honest and ADULT! No bickering! <3 you girls.
    I am also proud of Lindsey and Ashley for sharing so much of themselves. You are both beautiful women and have blessed me greatly. Please continue to share. If we all keep hiding…we will all still feel alone.

  36. Wow, I guess this post generated a lot of feedback! Phew, I don’t usually read alot of the comments but I was intrigued. You go Miss Lindsay & do whatever works for you! Be proud of yourself & stay strong :) I know first hand that depression can effect people on many different levels, and whatever works…..I say stick with it :) Have a great night!

  37. I truly believe that God is a crucial key to over coming depression, but I also believe that antidepressants COUPLED WITH A THERAPIST are gifts from Him. I think everyone needs a therapist at one point or another in their life :).

    I think your message, for this post, was that an antidepressant isn’t a cure all, and you are completely right… but it doesn’t make a person small or less than if they need one at some point in their life–or like a few of my family members who simply are so imbalanced they cannot function normally without medical help.

    If I had read post while in a bout of depression I would have probably felt awful for being on an antidepressant, even though I also see a therapist and my Bishop during those bad times. Medicine is a gift from God, and while I am actually weaning off my own antidepressant at this time, I will forever be grateful for the help it, when used with other sources (therapy and prayer), gave me.

  38. Actually, God DOES give people more than they can handle, just not more than HE can handle. We are weak and get overwhelmed on a daily basis, and most of the time we feel like we have too much on our plate, however the LORD is strong and can take the burden off our shoulders. I have been living with depression for most of my life and it is only by HIS grace that I am still on this earth.

  39. Thank you so much for sharing your story! I have been there with depression and meds too. I hated that feeling of not feeling anything because of the meds, but they were necessary at the time because I just couldn’t function. That’s been years and since then I’ve began a relationship with Jesus. :)
    But this year things have been really hard and very stressful. I have found myself slipping into that depression and anxiety. I’ve been challenged by my mind that just won’t shut off and have found it hard to trust Him. Reading your reminder today is very timely for me. I appreciate it!!

  40. i was touched when i read your post, lindsey about your battle with depression. i never saw myself as a depressed person, but through a series of bad decisions and heartache over the course of years, i hit that point of seeking help medically speaking. i blocked out family & God, and the struggle was so severe, i wished desperately i could stop thinking for just a moment… and didnt know how to. i wanted desperately to die, but i have 3 little kids that need me so i could never do that to them. i was only on the meds for a short time before i took myself of them, detemined to not be “that person” being controlled by depression and medication… little by little i regain my life back, by putting my first love back to the position he belongs in. thank you for sharing your story and your hope in Jesus. its brings encouragement to me… nowadays, I write my blog, because, people actually start encouraging me to because they think i am funny… funny & transparent! =) thats what people like, honesty =)

  41. Just stumbled upon Ashley’s blog while trying to find out how to curl my hair:-_ I’ve been reading the posts ever since. I battle with depression and have since I was little. I’ve tried just about every class of meds my doctor could prescribe and none seem to help. I think help from a somewhere else might be in order here… thanks for the post.

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