TMS. A month later.

It’s been about a month since I finished TMS treatment for my depression and anxiety.  A lot of you asked if I’d do a follow up after some time had passed so here’s a quick one.

I’m still feeling good.  Not perfect, but so much better than I felt before the treatment started.  Overall I think the treatment gave me a few glorious days of true remission but mostly it just pulled me out of the truly terrible depressive period I was stuck in the last year.  I still have clinical depression and anxiety disorder but it feels a billion times more manageable than it did.  I was hopeful that I’d be able to go off my antidepressants but I don’t think that’s a safe choice for me so I’m staying on them, although I might decrease the dose a bit if I still feel okay in a few months.  I think I could lower the dose right now but I worry about the depression coming back and at this point I’m terrified to do anything that might put me back in that hole again.

My anxiety is much better than it was before treatment.  My agoraphobia is almost nonexistent, which is something I couldn’t even imagine before.  I’ve been slowly cutting down on my Xanax dose and as of this week I officially don’t have to take it daily…only as needed during anxiety attacks.  I hesitate to share this here because I think it’s easy for people who don’t have anxiety to say “Good job on getting rid of those drugs!” because most people don’t understand that Xanax (while it has a lot of shit side-effects) is a damn life raft for anxiety.  And while I’m proud of the work I did going off it (because it was hard, honestly) I know that it’s entirely possible that I will have to go back on it and if I do I want to remind myself that that is not a fault or something to be ashamed of.  I’m happy and grateful that the treatment I’m on is working better than many of the things I’ve tried in the past but what I’ve learned is that I didn’t fail in responding to past treatments…those treatments failed to work for me.  And that is a big difference.  One we all need to keep in mind.

Because I feel better I’m able to do a lot of things to help myself stay better.  These were things that felt impossible a few months ago but now seem almost as easy as the people who don’t understand mental illness always insist that they are.  I walk 1-2 miles a day.  I get sun and fresh air.  I leave my house.  I’ve started cleaning out the piles of crap of accumulated when I was too tired to work.  I write.  I go to sleep before 2am.  I’ve stopped drinking and am training for a marathon.  HAHAHAHAHA.  Okay, not that last sentence.  If I ever exchange vodka for running-on-purpose it’s a pretty good sign that I’m in a cult and need rescuing.  But the other things are things I’m pretty proud of.  Again, I don’t think I could have done any of those things in the deep depression I was in, but I’m taking advantage of the fact that right now I can do them.

I still often feel like a failure.  I still have dark days.  I still have to avoid my triggers.  I still have massive problems with concentration and memory and motivation.  I’m still broken.  I’m still me.  I’m still looking for a way through.  But I’m glad to have found a way that helped me if for no other reason than to reaffirm that there is hope.  There is always hope.

PS. A few people have asked if I was compensated in any way for writing about TMS.  Fair question, but no, I wasn’t at all.  Insurance paid for some of it (after a ton of denials) and I paid for the rest myself.   I only share it here because I know I’m not the only  one struggling with this.  TMS is not for everyone and is still really in its infancy in many ways.  It doesn’t always work and when it does work it could stop working at any time and no one knows why.  It’s uncomfortable and time-consuming and expensive.  But for me, it was so worth it.  I was (and remain) very lucky.


200 thoughts on “TMS. A month later.

Read comments below or add one.

  1. It’s reassuring to read your account Jenny and to know that things are more up than down at the moment. I reckon it’s a sign of wisdom that you’re taking things slowly and not stopping medications too soon.
    It’s good to read the progress you have made.

  2. Thank you for writing about this. This, and traditional “shock” therapy were something my partner contemplated before he found medications that work 90% on him. But this treatment can seem scary and is definitely expensive, and the things written about it online are very mixed. I’m glad you had good things happen!

  3. I just wanted to thank you for posting about the TMS. It helped my husband prepare for his own treatments. After years of treatment-resistant depression and anxiety, and allergic reactions to most of the meds that seemed at first to help, it’s been amazing, even if it doesn’t last.

    Two weeks in, he texted me to say “I felt happy for a few minutes this morning!” This is the literally the first time in several years that he has felt happy. So, thanks.

  4. Love to hear that the TMS helped, that you are doing better, and that you are still the Jenny we all adore. You have let so much light into the world of depression and anxiety that I vote for St. Jenny, The Bloggess!!!!!

  5. I’m so grateful you posted about your treatments and afterward. I know a couple people now considering it or in the early stages of treatment, and it’s really valuable to have someone’s honest account of their experience without the clinical “this might pinch” bullshit.

    If you actually give up drinking and run a marathon I’ll assume aliens abducted the real Jenny and you’re a pod simulacrum.

  6. Jenny,
    Joseph Campbell said “Follow your bliss. You’ll have moments when you’ll experience bliss. And when that goes away, what happens to it? Just stay with it.” I say that your bliss comes from Victor, Haley, Ferris, Hunter, Dottie and the other cat whose name I can’t remember. You say your broken but how can someone that say’s their broken bring so much light into other peoples lives? I say your “quirky” and that my dear is awesome!! Because we all follow the bliss that you bring to us on a daily basis. Sometimes the things you say and do make me laugh out loud at work people think I’m crazy. But when you make me laugh and cry with the things you do and go through. You are bringing light to many lives. FOLLOW YOUR BLISS JENNY!!!!!

  7. I’m gald for you. Also, I may make “ I’ve stopped drinking and am training for a marathon. HAHAHAHAHA. Okay, not that last sentence. If I ever exchange vodka for running-on-purpose it’s a pretty good sign that I’m in a cult and need rescuing.” my new life quote.

  8. AND…….you went to Europe and made magical memories with your family!!!
    Wooooo Hoooooooo!

  9. Thanks so much for the follow up. Am glad things are so much better and hope it lasts! Good on you for all you have accomplished.

  10. I’m really happy you’re doing better, Jenny. And thank you for the comment “those treatments failed to work for me”. I am on anti-depressants, and my daughter had been too but she is off the meds now (and instead is into Cross-Fit), and suddenly she’s making me feel very judged because I need to continue my meds. Your phrase helped me to put it into perspective of “Glad cross-fit is working for you, but that won’t take the place of meds FOR ME, thank you very much”. It is hard to keep my chin up, because people with anxiety, depression, or any of the multitude of other mental health concerns often feels judged, or lacking, or just plain “broken”. I think she means well, maybe she thinks she’s “saving me” from reliance on meds, but I doubt she really understands how suicidal I was before meds. Anyway, thank you for being you and for being a ray of humor in our lives. You really are loved by a lot of people.

  11. I deal with anxiety and depression. A few years ago, while on anxiety meds, I suffered seizures. Considering that I hadn’t had seizures in almost 15 years, we rightfully deduced that it was the meds causing the seizures. I’m pretty sure it was a one off. That other meds wouldn’t have the same result. But because I have special needs kids, I cannot risk having a seizure while driving. So for now, I deal with it as best I can without the meds. And there are so many days lately that I would give anything for relief. But, if nothing else, listening to your books give me a ray of light on the worst days because I know, there are better days ahead.

  12. I got nervous that it stopped working with your twitter link title. Sooo glad it’s still working. Much love to you – hope it continues to help. Sending <3 your way.

  13. I am so happy for you! Keep positive.
    Glad you had fun in Europe! Pics were great! ❤🌷

  14. Thank you for that key phrase, “they (the treatments) failed to work for me”. I think its true that sometimes people feel that its their fault when a treatment doesn’t work, and that sense of fault or failure can cause another downward spiral. The truth is that not everyone benefits from every treatment; that’s why there are multiple drugs / methods out there. I am so very happy for you, that you’ve reached this stage and can enjoy the normal every-day things in the world. Best wishes for continued relief, with some joy and laughter along the way.

  15. also not a paid endorsement, but i use the fisher wallace stimulator for home treatment that i think may be somewhat like the treatment you had? i’ve also had a LOT of relief with cbd oil from bluebird botanicals. 20 plus years of anxiety/depression/agoraphobia so i totally relate. because i feel better i’ve had the energy to do yoga almost every day and keep up with daily meditation (youtube versions of guided types). quitting drinking helped me too…that was a few years ago. i never knew what “self medication” was, but man oh man i was really good at it!

  16. I’m so glad for your improvement. You are a kindred spirit and I find myself pulling for you as I do myself. I’m glad you’re here.

  17. I’m so glad that it helped. Sounds like its helped more than you’re willing to admit (which I totally get). Also glad that you’re out in the fresh air and sun and moving your body a bit – all things that I think are super important to helping ourselves stay well. “tots and pears” that things continue to stay as well as they are – or!! get better than that.

  18. There is a home version of this therapy that is far less expensive that I have been looking into but need to consult with my Dr first. Dr appt are one of my Impossible Tasks though and I haven’t made it. Thank you for always being the light in the darkness and I’m so proud of you.

  19. So so glad you are feeling better. Even if it isn’t perfect, better is something to celebrate!! My mom was agoraphobic for a long time, so being able to get out of the house is HUGE. And, anyone who gives you shit about taking Xanax just doesn’t understand anxiety. Lots of love and I hope everything continues to get better!

  20. My doctor suggested TMS a few days before you first posted about it. The thought of magnets messing with my brain terrified me – sounded too close to electric shock therapy. Thank you so, so much for posting about your experience.

  21. Jenny- thank you for your honesty! It means a lot- maybe more than you even realize. You reach a lot of people. You matter!

  22. So glad to hear that things are more manageable! I had to put in years of therapy in order to manage my anxiety without medication. Daily anxiety medication actually made my anxiety worse and I was taking Xanax once a day. I am completely off medication now, but used to have a prescription active just in case. A safety blanket of sorts. People always assume my anxieties aren’t real or as bad as I make it seem because I don’t take medication. These same people also think I don’t get out of the house enough and don’t understand that is the one aspect of my anxieties I can’t overcome without help! It’s nice to be able to have other tools to overcome my anxieties but if they ever got as bad as they were 10 years ago I would be back on every drug needed and fast!!

  23. It’s awesome to see you on an uphill climb, and reading your blog recently has shown me that even if my struggle with mental illness is more bear mauling than a slight inconvenience, I can still live a good life, and truly appreciate and look forwards to the moments where it’s all worth it. Thank you so much for being brave and continuing to write candidly about what you go through! You inspire me every day 🙂

  24. I am so very happy for you! Any relief from the nightmare of anxiety/depression is a huge win! Thanks for sharing your journey.

  25. Thank you for your openness on mental illness. Don’t worry about needing drugs to treat anxiety or depression. People with diabetes need insulin! You do what you need to do, to keep you healthy and whole.

    While I personally don’t suffer from mental illness, my sister is diagnosed as bipolar, with high risk for schizophrenia. It’s something she struggles to talk about. Your books and your blog have been a godsend to our family. For her to feel less alone and more “normal” (I hate that word), and for us to understand her a little better. Thank you, for being you.

  26. Jenny I appreciate you sharing your story. My son suffers from depression and anxiety and I wish he shared with me the things you do. Best wishes to you always

  27. I definitely get the Xanax life raft thing, too. My anxiety has been really terrible lately and I don’t know if I could have left the house without Ativan. Sometimes the chemical intervention is absolutely necessary, and I appreciate your honesty on the subject. So many people are too quick to tell people to stop taking their medication, when it’s the only thing holding them together.

    I was working on a piece about my anxiety a couple days ago and I thought of all the things I’ve tried for it, and how I feel like a failure every time it doesn’t work.

    Then out of the blue I wrote, “I don’t have this illness because I’m not trying hard enough to NOT have it. I wish people would stop telling people that if they only try hard enough, they can turn off mental illness.”

    It made me feel just a little better as soon as the words left my fingertips. I hope it makes you feel a little better, too! 😊

  28. You are one of the most successful people I’ve ever come across – I know your illness says otherwise, but you are NEVER a failure. I’m so glad you have some health things working for you now. I really appreciate your comments about the way people blame the sick for the treatments that they take so they can be better. So much of life that makes you better requires being well enough to be work on being well. It’s the crap Catch-22 of Life. You’ve got some space now. Love it, nurture it and if things cycle back around, look at these wonderful days and hope again for more. Keep pitchin’!

  29. I posted here earlier that it had worked for me, too. Sadly, the effects wore off after a month. I think TMS was more of a placebo for me, since it took a shorter period for it to both work and to fade than is normally expected.

    However, it did do one thing for me – it forced me to realize that in order to get better, I needed to get back into CBT and stop relying on medication and TMS to do the heavy lifting. I actually became angry at myself for allowing it to take away so many years of my life. It’s a start.

    Keep up the good work, Jenny. I’m pulling for you.

  30. “I didn’t fail in responding to past treatments…those treatments failed to work for me.” I totally needed that reminder. Everytime I go to the doctor, it feels like they blame me for the medications not working instead of the medications. Makes me feel broken and like it’s my fault. In reality it’s no one’s fault. Boy is it a tough journey finding something that works. Please keep doing updates of how TMS is working.

  31. I love reading your posts (and books)! You are NOT broken, though. Your brain just works differently. You are amazing and brave. Happy to hear you’ve had positive results. Hang in there!

  32. I love that you are sharing about having TMS treatments. I didn’t even know it existed until you did. It is sad to hear it isn’t a permanent cure and it isn’t largely covered by insurance. However if I ever take a turn for the worse I would consider it after learning more about it through you. Thank you!

  33. I am so glad things are even a little better for you. I am looking into TMS now, as my symptoms have gotten worse in the last 6 mths. The agoraphobia, which was only mild and when I was really down, is now becoming so much worse. My family can’t afford for me to be this way, so I am hoping insurance won’t fight too hard. I really hope you continue to feel better, and keep us updated, because we all love you. ❤️

  34. So happy you are doing better. Thank god for Xanax. I think people who criticize our use of it should stand in our shoes for a day! They’d learn what’s it like to carry a heavy weight around all day every day. Every little step forward is huge and a great reason to celebrate! We are all here for you no matter what!

  35. So glad to hear that the TMS treatment has helped. Finding the right treatment isn’t always easy. (My elder daughter is bipolar and hasn’t found any meds that work for her yet.) Sounds like you have a very sensible attitude to your meds.

  36. Bravo! Your walking and getting outside are inspiring. You sound pretty happy, actually. I’m working on anti-depressants besides Effexor. Https//

  37.         Thank you for writing this. Reading your posts is like reading about myself. I’ve had my husband read through these because he is one of those people who has no experience with it himself and doesn’t understand why I am the way I am and likes to hold it against me when it’s convenient for him. It’s so frustrating trying to try and talk to him because he takes everything as a personal attack or just walks away when all I want is a few minutes of his time to just talk. We are almost just like roommates with wedding rings now and I have just given up. It’s upsetting because this isn’t how I envisioned marriage. At all! What frustrates me the most is that the one person I should be able to talk to I can’t. I was a nurse for 20 years and started this decline after the first surgery on my spine...I’ve had many and became isolated from everyone because I was in recovery from one medical issue after another. So I’ve kind of lost my sense of self and purpose. I’ve finally started to become more mobile now from the surgeries...exercising...losing the weight etc. so as far as that I’m getting better. But the mental part. The agoraphobia I’ve developed because of the fear of something happening when I go somewhere which has happened and I was helpless to get back home because I did too much and the pain got so bad I couldn’t drive home   Long story there. Your posts give me hope and maybe by him reading this he can understand that other people have these conditions too and they aren’t made up. I just don’t know how to “fix” things or this marriage. We aren’t separating or anything like that. But I have a 10 year old daughter and he has to do everything. I feel bad enough about that. That he has to work and do every thing around here. I’ve told him that many times. I feel worthless. This has been going on about 7 years and I’m afraid it’s too far gone. I’m 41 and thinking is this it?  Is this my life now. I just feel like so much is passing me by. My child is growing up and I hate missing out on doing things with her. I guess I just miss living life. I wish I could be that Mom who could just jump in the car and go to the store, take my daughter places and such like we used to, just really anything!  I know there isn’t anything anyone can say to make it better. I just wanted to thank you for continuing to write about your life and treatments so openly and honestly. I am looking into that treatment you just went through to give it a try. At this point I’ll try anything!  Please continue to update here. It really helps me to read these posts and helps me feel a little less alone!  Thanks for reading this! I hope you continue to find ways to feel a little bit better!  Sending some love your way!


    (I can so relate to so much of your comment. It’s not too late and there is still hope. Keep looking for treatments. The right one is out there. I promise. And even if you never find it you are so worthwhile. ~ Jenny)

  38. I adore your “seize the day” philosophy. It’s true that none of us know when the life we’ve got now is gong to turn (or return) to a life that, well, doesn’t match the image on the brochure. Any brochure.

  39. So glad you are feeling better. Mental illness is no joke, I am glad you have help. So many of us struggle thru on our own and the results are sometimes tragic. You have brought me such joy and laughter; my sister and I text your quotes back and forth late at night. We are both up a lot with anxiety. It makes us giggle and makes the night a little less dark. Gob bless You!


    You are NOT BROKEN.

    You are all of the glorious parts of you, good and bad, bound together. I get it feels like shit, and you feel broken (sometimes? Always? Often), but once more, louder for the people in the back:


    Thank you for sharing your self with total strangers.

  41. A huge success!!! Really glad your feeling better and have finally found some reprieve from the darkness. I’ve had to come to terms that I need antidepressants to function daily and accepting that has been a relief from the guilt of taking them. Xanax and your super supportive fans are always there for you no matter what dose required. <3

  42. I’m happy your treatment has been able to help you and hope it continues to work for you! Like any other chronic illness there are ups and downs and good days and bad days. When you share your story you are helping so many people, thank you!

  43. I’m glad you’re doing better! I took a HUGE nosedive last month and was NOT doing well at all. I have mild agoraphobia (I can force myself to leave the house) and anxiety, adding The Pit to it was NOT good for me at all. Depression runs on both sides of the family, mama has been on meds for decades. Her doctor is discussing TMS with her, because her depression is intractable like that.

    I’m doing better because of Unexpected Big Dog. My last dog was a tiny little poodle…Tauren is a 60 pound pit bull mix. Sweet sweet wannabe lap dog she is! But she’s eased my heartbreak, even though my first response was a VERY loud NO when asked about getting another pet. Everyone needs differ things as far as what works for their emotional state/mental needs/ mental illness. The trick is to keep working towards “I feel ok with times of great happiness”.

    Content is sustainable. Happiness is not. 😁

  44. A huge success!!! Really glad you’re feeling better and have finally found some reprieve from the darkness. I’ve had to come to terms that I need antidepressants to function daily and accepting that has been a relief from the guilt of taking them. Xanax and your super supportive fans are always there for you no matter what dose required. <3

  45. Has the fog lifted enough to say ‘depression & anxiety’ instead of ‘my depression’ etc. I quit
    saying ‘my MS’ a while back. Words matter. It’s easier to do battle with a very large &
    scary dragon than to contemplate amputating a part of myself. Of course, it is part of me
    but the dragon is not so scary when it’s asleep. May our dragons sleep long & soundly!

  46. I often joke that it’s like throwing spaghetti at a wall to see what sticks. SSRI isn’t working? Let’s try adding an SNRI. Still want to crawl out of your skin? How about a benzo? Intrusive thoughts of self-harm and passive suicidal ideation? DBT group! And on and on.

    And while it would be super fantastic to just magically know what would work, I’m glad to at least have a pretty big supply of spaghetti in the meantime.

  47. Excuse me while I get on my mental health meds soapbox for a moment…
    Pressure from people who don’t suffer (and pressure from ourselves) to cut back or give up medications for depression, anxiety, ADHD, (insert your own particular mental health Rx here) has got to stop in this society. Nobody would EVER pressure a diabetic to lay off the insulin. Cancer patients aren’t told to stop being babies or told that their chemo is a crutch. Even folks with high cholesterol or high blood pressure aren’t pressured to cut back or wean themselves from their medications.
    We get these mental HEALTH prescriptions from highly trained and highly knowledgeable medical professionals who are treating very real medical conditions. When is our society going to get it that there is something actually malfunctioning in our brains and/or in our body chemistry and causing these VERY REAL conditions? Why do the pancreas, the lungs, hearts, even prostates get respect, but when something goes wrong in the brain, we blame and shame the sufferer for trying to get help and relief?
    Jenny, part of me feels a bit sad that the treatments didn’t get it all or do all that you had hoped might be possible, but a much bigger part of me is also really happy for you that you ARE feeling things you haven’t felt before. So many of us who look to you everyday for not only a laugh, but also for validation have been encouraged to keep going because of you. Do what YOU need to do to keep going in this battle. If your doctors feel they’d help and they recommend even more meds, then go for it. Do what YOUR body needs and to hell with public opinion.
    And as for those jerks who worried early on in your treatment that TMS was going to make you less funny and not YOU anymore…Well you showed them! You are still the riotous screw up you always were and your perspectives are spot on and brilliant.
    Stay healthy. Stay the screwy loose cannon that you are. You are LOVED more than you’ll ever truly realize. 😉

  48. Thank you thank you for your honesty in what you share. I am me. I also have my dark days (they’re different) and my triggers (they’re different). I also have my light days, and I’m learning, moment by moment, that if something helps me stay stable or feel good, It’s NOT MORE VIRTUOUS to figure out how to go off it. That’s just for me. Thank you for you honesty. Hugs.

  49. Thank you so much for sharing. I share much of the same disease cocktail as you with the very rare occurrence of mania (oh and while it is occurring it is glorious compared to the days of not being able or willing to leave the house).

    This is presumptuous on my part and I apologize bitter pleaser don’t go off/decrease your anti depressants without medical supervision. I went off completely one time and had seizures. The other time I ended up getting married in Vegas. It was annulled.

  50. You are magnificent. Your line: “I’ve stopped drinking and am training for a marathon. HAHAHAHAHA. Okay, not that last sentence. If I ever exchange vodka for running-on-purpose it’s a pretty good sign that I’m in a cult and need rescuing. ” made me laugh so loud- you referenced all things I also cherish – vodka, cults ( not being in them , hearing about them on My Favorite Murder podcast) and I hate running. You are a bad ass momma jamma .. Side note: I looked that term up in case I was insulting you without realizing and thank god baby jesus It’s a compliment.
    mamma jamma
    (n.) 1. something that is considered by many to be very sexy and/or boss. 2. synonym for the word “thing”
    you peepin’ at that hott mamma jamma?

  51. All the yays! I have to admit that when you said that thing about not drinking and training for a marathon, I was like “What kind of medication is she on?! What’s next–becoming a vegan?” (No offense, vegans). But superhappy for you:-)

  52. I am SO glad to hear it worked for you and you have some relief. We all love you so dearly and are in your corner jumping up and down, whooping and cheering you on. I am so intrigued by TMS and I hope it becomes more affordable and accessible to everyone. Thank you so much for sharing your experiences!!!

  53. Don’t fault yourself for staying on your meds for a while longer. Your brain has to learn how to function without the killer depression you had. The meds are just the boost your brain needs to really feel what is going on. You are an incredible model for thousands of people. And we pray daily for your success. Keep on keepin’ on. You are doing great.

  54. Thank you for sharing your journey with us. You rock, Jenny, and I’m glad you’re feeling better.

  55. Those few days of total remission must have been like a Catholic seeing the Virgin Mary on their pancake. I’m pretty sure I’ve never had a happy moment ever. All those pictures of me looking happy are obviously lies.
    I might leave the house when it gets a little cooler. I live in Florida though, so I have a few months to psych myself up for it. (My daughter is getting married in two weeks and unless a miracle happens I don’t think I can go.) I know she’ll forgive me but forgiving myself is the real bitch.
    You are doing GREAT!
    You went to treatments every single day! You went to Europe and didn’t pass out from day drinking. (or is that just me?)
    You went back to school SHOPPING with a teenager.
    You are leaving the house for this probably over-hyped fresh air and sunshine you speak of. Don’t stop. Leave the house every day. Keep up the momentum.
    You are amazing! 😍🏡🏖️🌞👌(not a white supremacist hand signal)

  56. My shadows are chronic depression, anxiety, ptsd and adhd plus I am an alcoholic in recovery for 18 years. I am so glad you found something that pulled you out from that deep dark abyss. Those of us in this battle must arm ourselves daily. We must recognize that the weapons we use today may not work tomorrow. Thank you for sharing your experience. One never knows when a new tool might someday be needed. This one will go in my research tool box.

  57. I’m very happy you’re not in complete darkness anymore! Thank you for sharing with us x

  58. Jenny, I am so glad that you’re having this experience. I think that I ruin my good days by thinking about how much it will hurt when they end. Don’t be me.

  59. When I saw the words “treatment failed me” in your Facebook post, I thought you were talking about the TMS and my heart sank. Then I hurried to read the post. I’m so relieved you’re still better.

    I’m lucky that the first anti-depressant I tried worked pretty well. I still have dark times, I’m still “broken”, but I get by. I’ve tried going off them a few times, because (some) doctors and society have told me I’m not “supposed” to be on them permanently. That I’m supposed to get better. And it never worked. Then I finally saw a doctor who said “Some people need to stay on them their whole lives. And that’s OK”.

  60. Jenny, so very proud of what you’ve accomplished (travel!) and what you’ve gone through (repeated magnet stabbings!) – Very, very happy for you – that black hole does suck out all the happy and light and you deserve all the happy and light you give to all of us in the same struggle.
    You Go Girl!

  61. It’s always tough when things don’t work quite the way we want them to. As anyone with mental illness knows and accepts we are broken, and that there isn’t just a single cure that will make us better. Yet I think we all have that inexplicable hope that the next therapy, pill, etc will finally ‘fix’ us and turn us into normal functioning people (according to societal norms).

    Thanks for taking us on this journal with you even if it didn’t work as well as you had hoped, think of it as a pick axe to help you climb the mountain of depression and anxiety. We all have our tools and it’s always better to be climbing up then sliding down.

  62. Depression, anxiety, etc. … each person’s experience is deeply personal and unique to them. Sharing your journey and experiences, Jenny (and your ‘tribe’, too) helps to remove the stigma for those of us who struggle and bridges a path to understanding for those who aren’t touched directly (or indirectly) by these issues. Thank you for being brave, strong, and honest. Love and hugs to you and your followers.

  63. I appreciate your honesty. You have great insight it your depression and anxiety. While I wish for a cure for the depression and anxiety, I realize that the best I can do is manage the symptoms as best I can to allow me to be present in my life. You are and an inspiration to me and so many others. You give me hope for a brighter future. Thank you.

  64. My daughter takes anti-anxiety drugs 3 times a day just to take the merest edge off her anxiety, then we just added another daily drug to try and cope with the paranoia that comes with the anxiety. Your posts give me hope that as my daughter gets older that we will find the right treatment for her to go from surviving to thriving.

  65. Being able to leave the house is fucking huge, and I’m so glad that’s one of the benefits that stayed. I think, for me, there’s two paradigms I’m comfortable with. Full blown depression and anxiety, and normal. I have rule-sets for both of those. I know what to do when I’m in full frozen mode and there are plenty of guidelines for what to do when you’re basically ok and can function in all areas (and I do remember times when I was pretty functional and ok across the board). It’s that giant in between range of odd holes and gaps in functioning that I don’t always know what to do with, so I catalog them. Reading your inventory of what functions are at what level feels very familiar.

  66. I’m so glad that the treatment has helped you make progress! Maybe it isn’t perfect, but nothing ever is, the important thing is to cherish every good day, and celebrate EVERY achievement.
    (TBQH I think YOU taught me that. So this is me, just reminding you of your own VERY GOOD advice!)
    You’re doing great! I hope the agoraphobia stays away, and you can enjoy going out and having more hilarious adventures.
    Wishing you many more good days!

  67. You may not know or believe it all the time, but you are so strong and brave. You are a lighthouse to so many people in this world – standing up, putting yourself out there, being vulnerable, saying “this is who I am, and I’m not perfect, but that’s okay”.
    It’s so easy for people to get down on themselves, think they are alone in their struggles – especially with depression and anxiety. Depression is the most common mental health issue, but it’s also the little monster in the back of your brain telling you that you’re alone and a burden. But then we see your shining light, a spark of hope in the darkness, calling out and we know we’re not alone. We’re all the same kind of broken in our own unique ways.
    You are amazing. Your blog is amazing. Your books are amazing. You are a good person. You are a good mom. You are a good writer. You deserve every good thing. Thank you for being you. Thank you for being honest, and vulnerable, and perfectly imperfect. <3

  68. I think it’s great to mention the medication aspect. We only ever see the negative aspects of medications and attribute negative actions to medications. But medications can be life savers for some. For me, a particular SSRI did and does wonders. Also, have you ever looked into the link between gut biome and depression? It’s fascinating. Thanks for the post!!

  69. For many years, because you’ve been willing to talk about the bad, as well as the good, my world has been less lonely. I’m grateful for whatever gives you respite and a measure of peace.

  70. So happy for you and what little bit of relief you’ve found. I hope they continue to learn more about the illness and the treatments and that someday, everyone who suffers the way you do will be in “true remission”.

  71. I am so proud of and happy for you that I just burst into tears. #TrueStory
    Of course my hormones are whack and menopausal so I cry over underwear commercials too but STILL.
    I love what you said about how the treatment failed YOU. That is so so so so very important for everyone to remember. <3
    I’m always excited when someone is able to wean themselves from medications, but it is certainly NO SHAME to have to go right back if necessary. It’s still progress.

  72.         I stopped taking the lamotrigine and celebrex because neither one is helping me. I still feel on the verge of tears a lot, think suicidally, and still spend too much. I can't afford a psych doc for awhile but if they're not helping, what's the point.l?        

    (Don’t give up. Call the crisis help lines. They can sometimes help. Reach out to a friend or family member who can help advocate for you. It can feel impossible when you’re doing it alone. ~ Jenny)

  73. Thanks for the update, as TMS is next on the list if current treatment for spouse doesn’t work. Your willingness to share helps me soooo much.

  74. First of all, YAY for feeling better.
    I, too, promote Better Living Through Chemistry.
    If a medication is going to help me deal with the weird shit that my body does, HURRAY GIMME THE DRUG!

    Secondly, “I’m still broken.”
    (Putting on my “Mom Voice”.)
    Just NO!
    Broken implies non-functioning.
    You are put together differently.
    So am I.
    So are millions, maybe billions, of others, out there.
    It doesn’t mean that we have lost the ability to be functional.
    You have a function.
    (Imagine me doing the “Gameshow Spokesmodel Super Showcase” hand gestures, right now.)
    All this is your function.
    You bring joy, you spread the word, you shed light on everything.
    Just sayin’.

  75. Hurray that the TMS has helped, even partially! I wonder if it helps PTSD too? Been having my butt kicked by that particular brain monster lately.

  76. Hear hear re: Xanax. My anxiety attacks are (fortunately) infrequent and situational, but were once completely debilitating when they did happen. Being able to take a Xanax to stop the obsessive thoughts and paralyzing terror has made so many more things possible in life. Anybody who criticizes should thank their lucky stars that their brains have never tried to kill them. (And thanks for that phrase, Jenny; I use that one a lot!)

  77. I hope you continue feeling better and that you acknowledge your awesomeness. Most people couldn’t accomplish all that you have with our without psycological challenges.. And most wouldn’t put themselves out there as solace for others under any circumstances . ❤️

  78. I am glad that the TMS has helped. I am dealing with depression, anxiety and PTSD again. I am seeking help with medication but wonder about TMS.

  79. I tried to get off my anti-depressants and anti-anxiety meds at one point. The slide back into depression is so gradual, you don’t even notice until it’s too late. I need Xanax for those anxiety attacks that grab me out of the blue. I’ve been told I probably will need the meds for ever, and I’ve finally accepted it. I’m so glad the treatment helped you! Don’t push yourself to stop everything, crawling back out of the hole is just too damn hard!

  80. I’m happy that you’re experiencing some relief from your symptoms. I hope that someday there’s treatment that will fix everything so you’re not constantly in battle mode (you know, just turn it down to occasional skirmish with mostly peace treaty), but in the meantime any improvement should be celebrated. I’m glad you were able to go on vacation and that you can go out and enjoy the sun and fresh air. I hope that continues forever.

  81. I’m so happy TMS worked for you and you’re not that dark place anymore. I don’t know if your doctor talked about maintenance treatments, but it was something mine did. Thank you too for talking about still taking your medication. I know that many of us still need to use medicine to continue managing our conditions. It’s so important for anyone to know that while treatments may make a huge difference, that doesn’t mean we always get to go off our meds. I wish you the best of luck with this treatment and your continued better mental health.

  82.         Jenny, I and my daughter Aly have each written to you previously although I’m in no way expecting you to remember us. I thought of you last night. I have been in the darkest of places for way too long. Aly left for college, he (nice word for husband of almost 20 years) wants a divorce and has created situations to be the “good guy” in this which basically left me estranged from my family and closest friend.  Also been with the same therapist for 8 years and long story there but not seeing her anymore. Saw my dr last night and he wanted to put me in the hospital and begged him not to. He told me he needs a second evaluation by a colleague but basically giving me another rx or different is not going to do anything because it’s my situation not a pill that will fix this. I want you to know I have been living under a rock and not reading or looking at anything in my email other than work and what I had to do to get my girl to college. I have in my scariest of moments heard your voice (no not hearing voices I have your books on audible-still some humor left in me) saying “Depression Lies”. It has been one of the only things that has helped. Last I thought of how alone I have become and how damn scared I am of that. And I thought of you and your “Team Jenny” and thought these people get it and would never throw away a family member or best friend who is where I am because it’s too hard. The part that is killing my heart is I sat beside my mothers bed for days after she attempted suicide three years ago. My sister too for a different medical event. I show up and I don’t understand what is wrong with me that made me loose everyone in my life. I’m so sorry to over share and if too much please just delete bc you are going through so much of your own pain. I need to get to the point of my thank you and why I truly believe you are an angel. Again-no emails, social media etc for months. Thought of you last night and this morning saw your email. TMS is what I was thinking about. No decisions yet but I had to tell you that you are truly on this earth for more than you may realize. You are a warrior and in your battles you are saving others. I am sobbing right now and I just want you to know how much I admire your strength and. resilience. ❤️ Laurie  

    (I am sending you so much love. Be strong. You are worth it. ~ Jenny)

  83. If only it was mandatory for all medical insurance companies to 100% cover every mental health service… A lot of folks would be in a much better place. I’m so happy you’re in a much better place than before TMS.

  84. I’m glad you can be so honest about where you are at. I too, wish I could go off my medications for depression, but that’s just never been a good choice for me. I’ve tried it with disastrous results. I’m in a really good place. I don’t want to mess that up.

  85. I’m glad you’ve seen improvement with TMS. I know it isn’t a cure but obviously it can help. Taking Xanax on an as needed basis is wonderful. I can only dream of getting to that point. I agree that you should be very careful about changing the dosage on your other medications. Baby steps. Don’t try to do too much all at once.

    BTW, when you were first talking about TMS some people said Medicare covers it. I checked with my psychiatrist on my last visit and she said they have not been able to get Medicare to approve it. Just a little info for those folks (like me) who were hoping to go that route. I also have Tricare (military – husband is retired USAF) so she is checking to see whether they cover it but they pretty much follow Medicare’s guidelines so we’re not very hopeful.

  86. Thank you for this. I had to take Ativan for anxiety the other day for the first time in over a year. (There was a time that I needed it a couple times daily). It really made me feel like a failure, even though I knew I needed to do it to function and make it through my day. I know this is a battle that I will always fight, but it scares me so much when I think I could end up back where I’ve been. But you help me feel like even if that happens, I’ll find my way out again.

  87. Having fought depression and depressive episodes, I know that the medicine is sometimes the only way to survive. Currently, I am not on any and I am doing great. (I am just really lucky to be able to say that.) After my worst depression – aka – “If something doesn’t help, I won’t be here to be helped” and some great counseling and finding the right medicine, I got to stop taking it. Was depression conquered? No, it was banished for a while. It started coming back – ugh! But I had learned a great secret – you can go get help or at least try to get help. Now once your state gets too bad, it is harder to do. So, when it is trying to sneak back in – go get help RIGHT THEN! (I know Jenny knows this, but maybe someone else will read it and the lightbulb will go on.)
    It is easier to stop a small drip than to shore up the ocean.
    Take care of yourselves people – if that means asking for help – then f’ing ask for help. You ARE worth it.

  88. Are we broken? A friend used to repeat, “I am spirit, I am free. I’m as God created me.”
    Are we broken? Do I look at a child or an old person or anyone “differently abled” and think, “Oh, dear….what a broken person”? No…I think “he is a child of God, he has a right to be here”.
    I, too, deal (or not, depending on the day…ahem) with moderate-to-severe depression in addition to MS on top of near fatal (imho) grief over losing my spouse of 32 years. But I wouldnt call myself “broken”…and I hate seeing you do so.
    My LIFE, however? Now that mofo is really, really broken!
    Onward. Through the fog.
    Margo Thorpe

  89. Anything is preferable to being in that deep dark hole with no way out. I was surprised to read that you still alcohol. I have given it up almost entirely. The depressive effect it has on me is so not worth it.

  90. SO important that you realized you didn’t fail at past treatments; they failed you. HUGE step. You should be proud. there will be good days and bad days and regressions…but you are giving so many people hope! Love you!

  91. Don’t knock trading vodka for running-on-purpose until you’ve tried it! 😀🏃I quit drinking a year ago and am training for my first marathon, at 57. Haven’t needed Xanax for months. Glad you finally found something that works for you!

  92. “I didn’t fail in responding to past treatments…those treatments failed to work for me.” This is so true, thank you Jenny. I’m dealing with a lot of “spaghetti on the wall” treatments searching for a diagnosis for my medical problem, and my biggest fear every time isn’t just the feeling of personal failure or even continued pain (sadly I’m used to it), but that another doctor will shrug and be all “welp, I guess we may just never know the source of your pain and you should just accept it. Peace out!” (paraphrased). It’s exhausting to be my only advocate, but at least my medical jargon is improving!

  93. Proud of you, Jenny. For everything. You are taking some risks and it is paying off. I understand being happy to reduce a med, even if it might be temporary. I sometimes bump some of my meds down, when symptoms reduce significantly, and I believe that doing so helps them work better when I need to move back up again.

    I hope you can hang on to some of the peace you are experiencing.

  94. My only thought: Goddess and many blessings be with you! (even though you scared me with that no drinking/marathon crap!!)

  95. I always perk up when I see your post. I empathize with you on the ups and downs, and deep deep downs of depression. My last epiphany (I am now 60, my depression journey started at 13)
    Is one of fear of just giving in. I know how to numb the pain. I know how to keep that hollow feeling inside away. No, not suicide! I am talking about choosing to be physically healthy, but drag the depression along with me like a hobo bag over my shoulder. Or, take the various cocktails of drink and prescription drugs in various combinations to be numb. Or to sleep. Sleep all day. Sleep all night. Easy Peasy. That is not suicide but a fast track to death. I’m not ready to die. I want to enjoy my life. Just two hours a day of my life is acceptable. I’m not asking for help. I have doctors,meds,group therapy, and crappy insurance. I am the American depressed dream,damn it!
    Thank you if you read this post all the way through. I know there are others out there that feel the same as me. Bless your hearts. And mine. Let’s strive to keep them beating.

  96. “What I’ve learned is that I didn’t fail in responding to past treatments…those treatments failed to work for me.” AMEN! Thank you for declaring that to the Universe. Doctors want to cure patients, and when they can’t, some (many) of them get frustrated and either give up or blame the patient. We patients need to remember that we are not to blame and it is not our fault. Like Thomas Edison, rather than seeing it as failure, we can say that we now know “x” number of medications, treatments, etc. that do not work for us.

  97. Love reading this. Damn I wish we could have coffee. This may be my next step. I really appreciate you sharing your experience. One foot forward. Day by day. It’s what we do. Hail to hope!!

  98. You’re not broken. You’re you. Wonderful and beautiful and smart and funny and stronger than you think.

  99. What great news, truly, to be able to feel so much better and be able to live life more vibrantly.

  100. I spend a fair amount of time at work (I am a nurse)telling people that they didn’t fail, but the treatment did.

  101. You and your honesty are beautiful. I am grateful for you. I hope you continue to feel better.

  102. I congratulate you on all your successes, of which there are a lot. So many that you could put your hands among them like those silky mother-of-pearl buttons, and let them slide through your fingers. A lovely jar of success.
    I’d love some help with anxiety as you describe. My body hates all drugs. I’m allergic to morphine, I freak out on birth control pills, caffeine wigs me out, and man do I feel better not eating chocolate these days. My main gripe with scrip meds is that Dr’s seem to leave people on them forever. Whereas a doctor team like yours who is always testing a reevaluating sounds like a true medical practice. I side-eye alcohol as it poisons me and also I am resolved not to drink anything that I could pour in my car’s gas tank.
    What’s that saying that the cracks are just places that let the light in?
    Thank you for sharing your walk.

  103. Your vulnerability is a gift to others, thank you for sharing. Someone I love very much who suffers from anxiety and depression and your words help me to understand more for him. I’m not always the best support, and I’m always interested in learning and improving for him. I thank you for your bravery and courage. You are a true inspiration and this world needs you.

  104. So glad to hear TMS has helped you. I know about feeling broken, like a failure, and fighting insurance company denials. A lot of us are right with you in that boat. It’s just great you’re feeling better. Thank you for giving us all a voice.

  105. Ms. Lawson!
    I think you are amazing.. I’m sure you have heard that before!
    I’m curious about the TMS treatment..! How is it different from the shock treatments that were done in the 50’s?
    I’m wondering how and or if it can help me?!

  106. Jenny I’m glad you are doing better. I’m glad that you can reduce your drugs, not because that’s a moral victory, but just because it’s a marker of you feeling better.

  107. Argh. I wasn’t done. To all the folks who feel pressured to get off drugs-screw that if they are working for you. AND I’d really like to see more pressure for better, more effective safer drugs. For better training for the people who prescribe them, and for the best most compassionate care for all of us who struggle.

  108. Thank you for reminding me that things get better and that it’s ok if treatments don’t work or stop working sometimes. I was off my meds for over a year while I was pregnant (and while I dealt with a miscarriage before that). I went to therapy twice a week and i didn’t just survive. I was good. And I had my son and even though I felt ok things got hard. Really quick. He has a very rare medical condition that will require surgeries on his eyes throughout his life. And before we figured out what it was, the possibilities of what it could have been were even more scary. So I went back on my meds. And I did ok. Like really ok. And that was crazy. And he’s six months old now and I’m navigating an extremely rare disease with little information where I have to choose between surgical techniques I know nothing about and my anxiety is getting worse again. Like way worse. Like I’m feeling feelings I haven’t felt in four years worse. And I feel like I’m failing. But I’m not. And I needed to be reminded of that. And tomorrow I will see my therapist and I will tell her I’m not ok. But that I’m not failing. And that I’m not going to stop fighting to be my best me every day

  109. Every step toward the light is that much further from the darkness. So glad ANYTHING is improved, you are amazing! And when it comes down to it, we all are broken in some way. Broken is really the new normal

  110. I am thrilled to hear that you still have some relief! You are doing the right thing by not expecting miracles, but instead enjoying the incremental achievements. Love you, Jenny!

  111. I am so so so so happy that things are still okay and the TMS has seemed to make a difference. I don’t think there is such a thing as a miracle-cure when it comes to mental illness, at least I’ve never personally known anyone who one day was just 100% cured forever. But sometimes you find something that works enough to allow you to live your life, and I’m soooo happy you found that.

    I have been ‘in remission’ with my bipolar for roughly two years, in that I still have icky times but I haven’t had an actual depressive episode in two years. However, I have been struggling a lot with my anxiety lately, not quite as bad as it was a few years ago but bad enough that it was severely interfering with my normal routine. Doctor put me on a new med that seems to be working for now… I’ve also started going back to therapy as a bit of a preventative measure against relapsing with my old eating disorder, situations lately have brought back that ‘mindset’ and I know I need help to not fall back into those habits. Sometimes it feels like most of my life consists of managing my mental issues… And then I read your posts and remember that there is light, there is positivity, even when we can’t see it. Thank you for sharing with us.

  112. Have you tried the CBD oil yet; for anxiety and pain? I’ve been taking the slow release (in gut not stomach) tablets available from Holland and Barrett here in the U.K. and to my astonishment they appear to help! Surprised b/c they aren’t really strong dose or expensive ( possibly that they dissolve in the gut ?). Xanax appears to be equiv of Valium over here which you can only get prescribed in 2 week amounts unless your Dr is a pushover/private as it’s so addictive. So unfair b/c I loves it, my precious….

  113. I am absolutely thrilled for you that things are still going well for you after your treatment!

    And I’m right there with you on the people who are so pleased when someone isn’t taking meds—my DH recently told a co-worker that he might need to take me to a store so that I don’t have a panic attack, the co-worker (who is my VERY close relative) responded by saying, “That must be a side effect of her meds.” SERIOUSLY?!?!!!!?????? No, not a side effect. It’s the actual &%*$#&^@# CAUSE for the NEED for the meds!!!!!!! I could have screamed—-the lack of understanding is STAGGERING!

    I should add that it’s always good when people get better and, thus, no longer have any need for medication. But, dropping mental health meds shouldn’t be everyone’s main goal, especially since it can literally be a DEATH SENTENCE! (Sorry for being so shouty. I’m just so tired of ignorant responses.)

  114. I’m so glad you’ve had significant success with this treatment. As for being broken, remember the cracks let the light shine out. So many people love you for that light.

  115. “Because I feel better I’m able to do a lot of things to help myself stay better.”

    This is so crucial, and a fact that a lot of folks just don’t get. For me, the deeper and longer a bad episode goes, the harder it is to do anything to take care of myself. Stay on my meds. Leave the apartment. I’ve gone WEEKS without showering or brushing my teeth. Which is so alien to some people (parents) I jut don’t tell them anything anymore.

    Right now I’m in a better place (for one thing, work has picked up and I have more structure to my day) so I can do things that will help me stay better. (see the above list of impossible-to-maintain activities).

    I’m glad things are going so well for you!

  116. I’m so glad you found something to make your days a bit brighter. I have never been clinically depressed but did have postpartum. I sank, looking at a beautiful baby and wondering why the world was dull and tears were running down my face. It was like I had caught a virus and was suddenly sick. When I realized I was depressed after 2 months, I researched and tried St.Johns Wort before anti depressants. It took three weeks before the days started to brighten, I was so lucky to find something that worked. Even people who aren’t depressed have up days and down days so just go one day at a time and keep fighting for happiness 😘

  117. I am so glad you posted an update. Your honesty and humour are so refreshing! When it was my turn to host book club, I chose your book so people without anxiety could read what it can be like to live with anxiety. Never stop writing – your words are so valuable to so many!! And as for the Xanax – I take cihpralax every day and don’t want to stop. I cannot imagine being the complete bundle of nerves I was before, now the bundle is untangled enough that I can function well.

  118. You are my hero. Roger on the, “this is sort of working and I don’t want to change anything”. Been there for over ten years now and thankful for every single day. Thank you!

  119. Thank you for sharing your journey, Jenny. I’m so glad that you are feeling better. Most people in my life don’t get the “dark pit of sadness,” so I truly appreciate your honesty and willingness to share. Your posts remind me that that I’m not alone and that the fight is worth it. Also, humor really freakin’ helps!

  120. Great for you Jen! Thank you for sharing your journey – it and you are brave and courageous! I’m so glad you’re feeling better and I hope each day gets better and better! xo

  121. Thank you! One of my clients has done this and it helped her depression. As a therapist, I like recommending things that work. That’s why I recommend your books so often!!

  122. I so agree with post by “Anonymous” on 9/6. I have clinical depression and have had it from H.S. But no one recognized it. I also suffered from anxiety and agoraphobia. My anxiety was especially bad going over long bridges which sucked because I was living in NJ and had to commute to Philly every week day for my job. I was already dreading my trip home (over the bridge) by mid-afternoon. I finally found a Doc who was willing to work with me on finding the right antidepressant tthat helped me. I was so in wonder that I could live a life where I felt “normal”. Some people think anti d’s make you euphoric. Not true, wouldn’t want that anyway.
    So glad you’re feeling better.

  123. So happy for you. I’m not religious, but my prayer is that TMS continues to work this well for you. It makes me happy to know that you are able to walk 1-2 miles, and get outside in the sun and take great trips to Scotland. Live life! 🙂

  124. Thank you for sharing your journey, one I’m glad you are continuing. It is a journey for all of us who are broken, which is ALL of us, and sometimes the struggle is too much but little sparks of relief can make all the difference. Your sparks are ours as well. Thank you.

  125. I’m hoping that this treatment continues to provide relief for you. The fact that so many of us understand and support you, and each other, is heart-warming. I managed to reduce my Celexa and go off a few years ago and got so cranky and emotional during an unexpected period of extreme stress that I went back on a “maintenance” dose of Prozac which is recommended for “women of advanced age,” and find it works well. At this time, anyway. That and supplemental lorazepam when needed seems to do the trick but nothing helps with inertia. Wish that could be targeted with therapy!

  126. I love your words. It feels like you reach out and touch me directly. I usually just read and feel better, but today I wanted to respond to something you said, so here goes:
    Anyone! who tries to tell you how to live your life, should realize that you are you and they are not.
    I know some people “mean well”, but, really, people need to stay in their lane. Don’t get me wrong, I am ALL for “experience, strength, and hope” that is not what I am talking about here.
    You keep on doing you. You rock at being you, and always have! I get so much from what you share, and it seems to me that others do too. Thank You! and also, Thank you to all the people who share themselves in the comments. I am filled with anxiety over just these few words I wrote. Again, Thank you all

  127. “what I’ve learned is that I didn’t fail in responding to past treatments…those treatments failed to work for me. And that is a big difference”

    We need billboards with this statement!

  128. Jenny! You are so strong and resilient. I am a psychologist who has struggled with varying levels of depression and anxiety for much of my life. I admire your writings and often recommend them as reading to clients and friends. I even have copies of your works in my office for clients to borrow or keep. Keep on! Keep on!

  129. “It doesn’t always work and when it does work it could stop working at any time and no one knows why.” That can be applied to every psychiatric treatment ever. I’m a psych nurse and have depression myself. One treatment will be a godsend for one person and do nothing except cause terrible side effects for the next. That’s why it’s important to keep trying until you find something that works well for you. There’s always hope.

  130. I’m just glad to hear that you’re feeling better, that in itself is reason for real celebration. Give yourself some grace about your medications, it’s by no means a sign of weakness or failure that you need them, but going to an “as needed” basis is phenomenal.
    While I don’t struggle with many of the issues you do, I have a few of my own, your posts always make me smile, and sometimes guffaw out loud so hard people have threatened to have me removed from a cruise ship.
    You, Jenny, are a beacon of light and an ambassador of mirth in a stressful world. Thank you for sharing your gifts with us . . . . and for just being YOU.
    P.S.: I’m totally going to ask for your insight when I get around to adopting another pet. Your pets have the most wonderful names. . . . Ferris Mewler is a GREAT name. He is quite the looker, btw, a total stud-muffin.

  131. Thank you for writing about your experiences. It helps so much knowing SOMEONE knows what depression and anxiety feels like and can express it in teal words! Keep on keeping on!😺

  132. I feel you on so many levels. My journey with depression is on a much smaller plane but still I could not do the work without allowing myself to try the antidepressants first. I also had to fight so hard to get injections for the arthritis in my knee which was also a case where until the injection eased my inflammation and pain I could not do the exercises to get my knee healthy, the pain was just too intense. It is hard for people to get help, ask for help and allow people to help. I know that is true for me. You sharing your journey has helped me help myself. I appreciate all you share.

  133. “I’m still feeling good. Not perfect, but so much better than I felt before the treatment started. Overall I think the treatment gave me a few glorious days of true remission but mostly it just pulled me out of the truly terrible depressive period I was stuck in the last year.”

    ^^THAT. That is exactly how I felt after undergoing 18 ECT (aka: electro-shock) treatments. Not perfect by any means, but… better. Able to shower and brush my teeth without wanting to cry. Able to quiet or distract myself from the suicidal thoughts that chattered in my ear constantly. Able to breathe.

    To the commenters here whose healthcare providers are asking you to consider ECT for yourselves: ECT is a terrifying prospect. Your mind instantly goes to the perceived inhumanity of it and all of the potential things that could go wrong. I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t scared out of my mind for my first couple of treatments. But honestly, each one got easier. I was lucky to have my treatments done at a major teaching hospital in my area. I was always treated with dignity and respect. Everything was always explained to me in detail. And I never knew anything about the procedure itself because it was always done under anesthesia. Sometimes I would have a mild headache after and some general short-term memory fogginess, but that was it. I believe the treatment brought me out of a very dark place, and I would encourage you not to let your fear hold you back from the potential of feeling better. Blessings to all.

  134. Stephanie C. Just wanted to send some love. I had multiple miscarriages and my second baby had serious medical condition.(and is fine now) I didn’t have a previous history of depression and yet I feel like I just barely made it. He’s 10 and even just reading your post reminded me of how hard it all was. I’m gad meds are helping you and your therapist is helping you and you deserve a fucking medal for getting up every day and being with your baby.

  135. So happy you found something that works. No treatmemt is perfect. Im learning that with lupus qnd r.a.. Celebrating the good days ia crucial

  136. I logged myself out accidentally trying to be encouraging at 1:00am. 🤷🏾‍♂️ stay strong sis.

  137. Every day you are still happy with your results gives me hope for myself. Thank you!

  138. You are a force for good in the universe. You,Jenny Lawson, are an amazing,compassionate,smart and truly funny person and your being on the planet improves the lives of thousands of us who love you! Thanks for being.

  139. Wow the Neurostar website makes it sound like a walk in the park or a visit to a spa. You recline in a chair while target magnetic pulse is directed over your brain while you feel only slight discomfort. Nothing like nails in your head. I think they are all about false advertising. But I’m very pleased that is has given you relief from major depression and anxiety.

  140. Congratulations for reducing meds. Xanax is fucking addictive and detoxing usually meds 4-5 days of anxiety hell. Having worked in psych hospitals, believe me I’ve seen it

    Sent from my iPhone


  141. I’m so happy for you. We have a strange dichotomy in this country – our doctors write more prescriptions than any others, yet so many people immediately assume that taking the medications we’ve been prescribed for pain or mental illness is a choice and that we ought to be able to get along without. Oh, and if you can’t get along without, at least use less. What? This makes no sense to me. You’d never tell an AIDS patient to try and use less! It’s so darned judgmental. I hope you’re not having trouble getting the meds you need. I’ve had mine knocked down to a fourth of what I’ve been taking for over 20 years, despite the fact that nothing has changed in my diagnosis. it’s a crazy world we live in. Thanks for making it easier to bear.

  142. Such an uplifting post. Having followed your journey leading up to treatment, with all the unknowns ahead, to now be reading about the positive results on the other side, it’s a story full of hope. As always told wth heart and honesty.

  143. Everytime I see how good things are happening to you, I’m glad too. I have anxiety since I was a child, and all my time in high school was affected by it. Last month, I was officially diagnosed with depression. I don’t need talk more about because you know how terrible that combination is.
    I just want to say, “Furiously Happy” is my bible, my mantra. I started the book in a crisis in 2016, and then I started talking about it to my whole family and friends. Your book is perfect, genial. My mom was worried about my anxiety (because she couldn’t understand) and I told her: “read the raccoon”. Now our relationship is better and she can help me more.
    So, when I said “I’m happy when good things happen for you”, it’s not just because I’m a good person or something like that, but it’s because you give me the hope I need to move on. I promise one day I’ll thank you personally. Keep fighting, you’re amazing!

  144. Thank you for this. I am So happy for you to have found an opening (if just temporary) out of the hole. Mostly thank you for you. I’m sure countless others feel the same, but I really can’t express enough how much I need your voice in my life. I have supportive friends and family, but it’s really not the same as hearing from someone that understands my struggle. And is also funny and honest and quirky as hell. I look forward to reading your next book.

  145. Hey,
    I just wanted to reach out because I’m also a sufferer of MDD and severe anxiety. I received TMS and had a similar reaction. My lows aren’t quite as low, but they’re still there sometimes. It’s super scary when you feel that wave of depression creeping up farther and farther and all the memories of being in over your head and drowning in it come flooding back and you think “This is it. It’s coming back. I’m going back to the way things were.”

    I don’t have any outstanding advice. The best habit I’ve picked up is when that feeling is coming on, I try and send out an SOS to one of the amazing, helpful, understanding, patient people who love me, who never seem to get sick of my shit. I have a go-to song I have to play for myself sometimes to help convince myself to reach out. I know you like Hamilton so you probably know it:

    If you really need a challenge, I have a bunch of things I keep around because I can’t see them without laughing.

    This is the current champion:

    Take care,

  146. I’m so glad you found a treatment that helped. Also, xanax can be a damned miracle sometimes. But I’m also thrilled for you for the improvement, and having better days. Your fight inspires me and helps me with my own, lesser, fight. Even to bring up and pursue moving from full time to part time work because as much as I love my job (ICU nurse, I get to help people survive the impossible… sometiems) it also is terrible for my physical and mental health. And I admitted that, to everyone, which was terrifying but good.

  147. I can’t thank you enough for being you, for being freaking hilarious, and for making me feel like I have a friend in the anxiety fight. I’m convinced I wouldn’t be alive today if it wasn’t for anti-anxiety meds, but I still despise that I have to take them. Thank you for speaking so openly about your experiences and for giving all of us here a safe place. You’re a national treasure.

  148. I’m going under the magnet soon. Holding my breath, hoping to breathe again. Crying at the walls and hiding in the bathroom are no longer comforting. The walls stopped handing me tissue and the bathroom smells like someone took a dump in there. It was probably me because I live alone, but I don’t want to point any fingers….

  149. My psych is looking into getting my insurance company to pay for TMS, and I’m really hoping it will help me. Right this minute I am hiding in a dark room at work full-on sobbing at what you’ve written about it. But that’s actually OK. It feels better than being half- or fully-asleep and numbly wondering how much longer it is before they realize I haven’t gotten anything done in months and they fire me, which is what I usually do at work lately.

    Thank you. Seriously.

  150. And I didn’t mean to post that last comment (196) anonymously. My name is Steven Collins and I have bipolar disorder.

  151. Wow I know exactly what you mean when you say for anxiety xanax is a life saver. I am still an “as needed” xanax taker and I have been on antidepressants for 30 years. I panic at the thought of going off of them because the few times I tried I fell hard and deep. I know people that do not want to even try medication so I was wondering if you think the TMS would help them.

  152. I’m new here, and start TMS next week. A friend recommended that I see what you have to say. Not only am I dealing with TRD and anxiety, but PTSD AND breast cancer, plus all the side effects of those treatments. I am a wreck. My marriage is hanging on by a thread, I’ve had suicidal thoughts for too long, and self – harm more than I have in my entire life. Something has to give. I’m cautiously optimistic, because I want to be better, but nobody around me really understands the struggle that I’m dealing with. I’m glad to have read your account. Thank you.

  153. Hi, I am considering TMS too. Marriage is hanging on by a thread too. I have depression, anxiety, complex PTSD, migraine and digestive issues.

    Jenny, if you’re reading this I would love and update on your TMS treatments, if you think your initial treatments have had sustained results? If you have gone back for any more since then, and if so, how well that worked?

    Or if anyone else here has anything to say about it?

    Best wishes to all. Thanks, Jill

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