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Struggling at uni with mental illness Watch

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    I've been diagnosed with severe depression, anxiety and body dysmorphic disorder and I've had them for years. Things got so bad one year I had to drop out of school for one year. I've been struggling everyday. None of my uni friends are aware of it, which is why it has caused problems. With my body dysmorphia, because it's on the severe scale, it means that I often have a distorted vision of my reflection. Because of this I was wearing the wrong foundation shade for months, and it was completely obvious & considered extreme by others. It's difficult to explain, but it meant that I got really nasty, dirty looks and laughs from people everywhere I went. I also don't like looking at mirrors or taking pics, so when I'm in a friend's room if there is a full length mirror I sit really far away, and I panic and walk away when I hear 'pics!' mentioned. It also means that I wear a lot of powder, so it might seem like too much to other people, but for me I find it immensely hard to wear less because my problem is so complex, wearing more just makes me feel a bit better. Every time I walk into a lecture I can see people giving me really horrible looks, and it makes me feel so low. As a result I find it difficult to attend lectures, because I hate all the nasty looks I get from people in my class, and just seeing the fact that they are negatively judging me, I can't take it.

    All of this is making my depression even worse. I cry every night and every time I come back from a lecture. Everyone is just so judgemental and horrible. I can't cope. They don't understand, they don't know what I'm battling every single day. I hate leaving my room these days so I'm also not eating enough food as I'm catered. I hate going down into canteen full of so many people just badly judging me. It gives me panic and anxiety attacks. I just hate it. Everyone is so mean and they don't understand. How can I stop having breakdowns here, and cope with uni?
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    Are you getting help and support for your mental health problems? That would be the first step for you alongside talking to your university student support team. Also apply for DSA (disabled students allowance) x
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    My advice would be, as hard as it can try to find someone with the same problems as you and talk to them about it, share your experiences what helps what makes it worse and go on from there.
    You make my social anxiety seem like nothing I understand where you're coming from as with my social anxiety pretty much destroyed my high school life but I've learned not to frown on the past.
    What I say is tell a select few of close mates and I mean CLOSE mates, if they are truly your friends they will understand and im sure it will help you feel better as you're going at it alone which I think is the biggest problem for those who suffer from any mental illness.
    All the best of luck - Venatal
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    Go to your GP. What you've been going through sounds horrible and hopefully the doctor can help, more so that anyone on here anyway.
    If there is anyone you trust completely? Or perhaps a councillor would be better? I know my uni has free counselling services. If you tell them they might be able to help you. Just talking through things can help a lot, because problems can manifest in your mind and appear a lot worse than they are, talking things through with someone can help put things in perspective (not saying your problems aren't big or real, just that by keeping them to yourself you are making them worse).
    I honestly know nothing about body dysmorphia, but maybe confiding in someone you trust can help with your appearance? Or for example, you could go to boots and ask someone to match your skin tone with foundation - then you can be sure it is right? That may help your confidence and improve your mental wellbeing?

    Anyway OP, i really hope you start feeling better soon *hugs*
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    I understand, I'm going through something similar at college but not as extreme to you.

    Is your uni close to home? I strongly suggest leaving and doing a higher diploma or something at a college. You state that it is quite bad and being surrounded by an unhealthy environment will not benefit you.

    If for some reason you do wish to stay, I'd suggest you speak to your GP about it so they can prescribe you to the appropriate medication, and also inform your friends on the matter. They will support you and you'll feel a lot less tense.

    Hope I helped and hope you're ok xxx
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    That sounds terrible. Please go to your GP, and in the meantime use the Samaritans or a similar service as a place to anonymously vent and have a cry.

    Try to remember (I know it's hard when things are bad) - most of the weird looks and people talking behind your back are your mind playing tricks on you, twisting reality. Try not to believe it. Acknowledge to yourself that it feels, crap but it's your conditions messing up your perception - it's not reality.

    I really hope you seek out some help, starting with your GP. It doesn't have to be like this.


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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I've been diagnosed with severe depression, anxiety and body dysmorphic disorder and I've had them for years. Things got so bad one year I had to drop out of school for one year. I've been struggling everyday. None of my uni friends are aware of it, which is why it has caused problems. With my body dysmorphia, because it's on the severe scale, it means that I often have a distorted vision of my reflection. Because of this I was wearing the wrong foundation shade for months, and it was completely obvious & considered extreme by others. It's difficult to explain, but it meant that I got really nasty, dirty looks and laughs from people everywhere I went. I also don't like looking at mirrors or taking pics, so when I'm in a friend's room if there is a full length mirror I sit really far away, and I panic and walk away when I hear 'pics!' mentioned. It also means that I wear a lot of powder, so it might seem like too much to other people, but for me I find it immensely hard to wear less because my problem is so complex, wearing more just makes me feel a bit better. Every time I walk into a lecture I can see people giving me really horrible looks, and it makes me feel so low. As a result I find it difficult to attend lectures, because I hate all the nasty looks I get from people in my class, and just seeing the fact that they are negatively judging me, I can't take it.

    All of this is making my depression even worse. I cry every night and every time I come back from a lecture. Everyone is just so judgemental and horrible. I can't cope. They don't understand, they don't know what I'm battling every single day. I hate leaving my room these days so I'm also not eating enough food as I'm catered. I hate going down into canteen full of so many people just badly judging me. It gives me panic and anxiety attacks. I just hate it. Everyone is so mean and they don't understand. How can I stop having breakdowns here, and cope with uni?
    See if you can be prescribed with anti depressants by GP and talk to the psychology department to see if any of the lecturers can do cognitive behavioral therapy
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    My parents are against anti depressants

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    See if you can be prescribed with anti depressants by GP and talk to the psychology department to see if any of the lecturers can do cognitive behavioral therapy
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    I would say (respectfully) that your parents don't have to know, but I'm assuming you've considered whether you can get away with it and/or are comfortable hiding it and you have decided not to go down that route.

    CBT is as effective as antidepressants, and your GP should be able to offer you that.


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    There are a number of different things you can do, first I'd suggest going to your GP and explaining to them how bad you're feeling/what's going on, if you are offered medication and YOU want to take it, it'd be beneficial if you did. As other posters have already said, your parents don't have to know and it's not up to them anyway, you are your own person.

    Second I'd suggest applying for DSA if you haven't already as you may be offered a mental health mentor (among other things) to help you through your time at university, but to get this you will need to go to your GP for a supporting letter. You should also look into your universities counselling service (all universities have one, I am pretty sure). They can be super helpful.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I've been diagnosed with severe depression, anxiety and body dysmorphic disorder and I've had them for years. Things got so bad one year I had to drop out of school for one year. I've been struggling everyday. None of my uni friends are aware of it, which is why it has caused problems. With my body dysmorphia, because it's on the severe scale, it means that I often have a distorted vision of my reflection. Because of this I was wearing the wrong foundation shade for months, and it was completely obvious & considered extreme by others. It's difficult to explain, but it meant that I got really nasty, dirty looks and laughs from people everywhere I went. I also don't like looking at mirrors or taking pics, so when I'm in a friend's room if there is a full length mirror I sit really far away, and I panic and walk away when I hear 'pics!' mentioned. It also means that I wear a lot of powder, so it might seem like too much to other people, but for me I find it immensely hard to wear less because my problem is so complex, wearing more just makes me feel a bit better. Every time I walk into a lecture I can see people giving me really horrible looks, and it makes me feel so low. As a result I find it difficult to attend lectures, because I hate all the nasty looks I get from people in my class, and just seeing the fact that they are negatively judging me, I can't take it.

    All of this is making my depression even worse. I cry every night and every time I come back from a lecture.Everyone is just so judgemental and horrible. I can't cope. They don't understand, they don't know what I'm battling every single day. I hate leaving my room these days so I'm also not eating enough food as I'm catered. I hate going down into canteen full of so many people just badly judging me. It gives me panic and anxiety attacks. I just hate it. Everyone is so mean and they don't understand. How can I stop having breakdowns here, and cope with uni?
    Sorry to hear of all you are going through, OP. The bit I've highlighted in bold would seem - to me, at least - to be holding you back massively. I would recommend telling some closer, more trusted friends about your diagnoses. People can only support you if you tell them what's going on - no one is a mind-reader! :nah:

    Another benefit of telling your friends would be that, once they know, you can confide in the problem getting your make-up right and ask them to be honest and tell you if you've got it wrong. Maybe a friend can meet you at your room and walk with you to lectures each day? This would have three benefits to my mind:

    1. They can tell you if your make-up isn't quite right and then you can do something about it before you leave for the lecture

    2. You won't have to walk into lectures alone and be afraid of people looking at you - you can just walk in focusing on the conversation you are having with your friend!

    3. You will have someone to sit with throughout and leave the lecture with. This personally gave me more confidence when I was a uni student.

    Sorry I can't advise further - I don't wear make-up myself!

    Do go back to your GP and get the appropriate help and support you need. As has been said, your parents need not know about your antidepressants and it's not really any of their business anyway
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    My parents are against anti depressants
    It's what you need and not what your parents want.
    • #1
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    I've decided to go on the anti depressants. It's gotten so bad, I have been crying non stop and having extreme thoughts of ending it.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I've decided to go on the anti depressants. It's gotten so bad, I have been crying non stop and having extreme thoughts of ending it.
    Really sorry to hear things are so awful but am relieved for your sake, that you have decided to go on antidepressants. If the right one/the right combination is found, it/they can work wonders. Medication has got rid of about 80% of my symptoms over the past 4.5 years :yes:

    Good luck :hugs:
 
 
 
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