Please help am I going mad?

Hi All …have been posting on here since oct 2007 when first DX . it is my first port of call whenever I need advice and support .
I have had surg ,recon treatment all that jazz and am now on Tamoxifen …probabaly a lot further on than most of yu ladies …have now got uterine problems which are under investigation …this I can handle it is my mental situation that is my concern …I do take citalopram but I cannot describe how I feel but I will try …I used to be a happy outgoing lady always up for a laff and certainly was one to voice my opinions that I gained the nickname of Rotty (as in Rottweiler Lol)…what has happened to me ? In the last12 Months I have become a miserable angry old she devil from hell .I have no confidence I have alienated all my work mates that they no longer want to bother with me ,as I have pushed them all away …I constantly am on a knife edge and arguing with my oh everything he does I cannot stand every habit he has I hate …he just annoys me I dont want to go any where with him I find him a total embarrasment !! wish that he would go away …and now he has booked a cruise !!! 12 Nights at sea oh my god what am I to do ?? I know deep down that it is me that has the problem although he does like a drink and this pees me off cos he is even more annoying when drunk !!!Why cant I tolerate anything any more
I know he is doing this for me …but what if he wants to get intimate on cruise … I have NO interest in that department as there hasnt been any shenanagans of that sort for over two years ! I hate the way I look I hate being constantly miserable wound up and angry I will soon be a lonely old woman and it will be all my own doing …I hate it all xxxxxxxxxxx

Hi Mazaroo

Sorry to hear you’re feeling like this, I’m sure your fellow forum users will have some ideas as to how to help you, but while you are waiting could I suggest that you phone the helpline after the Bank Holiday weekend and have a chat with the staff here, I’m sure they’ll be able to support you through this. Lines are open again on Tuesday morning (1st Sept) at 9am.

Take care,

Jo, Facilitator

Hi Mazaroo, sorry to hear how you are feeling. I have been in that dark place (prior to BC for other reasons) and know how it feels, it is a place I hope I never go back to. Notice you are on Citalapram but think it might be a good idea to go back to your GP and get him to review your meds. you might need the dose increased or changed to another medication.
Sorry I know the way you are feeling this is not going to help but I really feel you are in the darkest of depressions and need professional help and support.
Wish there was some magic cure I could send you. Sending you hugs and hope there is someone out there who can help you.

Hi Mazaroo

I’m so sorry to hear how you’re feeling right now. When you’ve got so much going on with a disease that tosses your life (and all that was good about it) around like a tornado, it’s often easier (even if you try and fight it) to go down the slippery negative ‘hate it all’ route and no-one can blame you for that. My mother had 'clinical deression for years so I have a little experience of this and the damage it does. I’d never spout the ‘be positive’ stuff that I often see written as you’re way past that and need some xtra help. At the moment, you probably find yourself ‘detesting’ people with ‘easy’ lives who make dramas out of ‘nothing’ - and it will show! It’s also easy to get into squabbles and alienate yourself (although that’s the last thing you want to do) with people who really don’t or can’t understand you. All you really want to do is cry out ‘Help, I’m not this horrible monster, I’m funny, loving, sexy underneath all this crap’.

I already know you’ve got ‘some’ strength and determination to get through this sh*t and admire your courage, and hope you will still go ahead with, the event in October. I believe that will be a good way to start bringing the ‘old you’ back, even if only a small start, and I hope that people who have seen you ‘low’ will also see you ‘shine’ on the day! That’s part of the thing with depression, as well as ‘you’ not believing in youself, eventually, there is the danger ‘others’ will think the same and you dont need that.

Please go back and see doc and, if necessary or if you think it would help, ask for proper counselling - if only to pour out all the ‘stuff’ that’s pent up and eating you. The good sign at the moment is that you WANT to do something about this, it’s when you don’t care anymore and also think nothing’s wrong that there’s a serious problem. Oh, and no you’re NOT GOING MAD!

Sorry for essay but just wanted to add some support. Hope you get some ‘good stuff’ happening soon. Oh, and if you don’t know what to do on the cruise, you could always eye up all the talent (oh, cheap, sorry!) Lots of love. Cathy x

Hi Mazaroo

I am so sorry to hear how you are feeling but pleased that you have posted on the forum. Very importantly you are acknowledging that there is a problem which is a sign of insight and strength and the first major step towards getting the support you deserve.

Like the other women I urge you to get straight back to your GP and if that GP doesn’t access you the support you require go to another one who does. Your Citalapram is clearly not doing it’s job and needs reviewed and there are many women on this sight who speak about how valuable counselling has been to them.

As Cathy says this disease turns our lives upside down, the way your are feeling now is not your fault and you should not have to be going through this alone. Please phone your GP first thing on Monday morning and get the ball rolling to start getting on with your life. Please don’t cancel your holiday by October you could be ready for that break.

Wishing you all the best. Anne xx

Hi Mazaroo

I don;t think for one minute you are going mad, but you certainly tick a lot of the boxes for clinical depression. Shunning other people, alienating yourself, irritable and agitated and no libido. All signs of depression. This is a very treatable condition and so like others have said, see your GP ASAP and get some treatment started. I have seen this lots of times and your symptoms are classic.

Best of luck


Hi Mazaroo - I found your email really touching, and, although I have no experience of depression I do know what it is like when you feel as though you have been taken over by an alien, which is the complete antithesies of your normal perky being. I felt like this some years ago when my oestrogen levels were too high.

I can’t offer you anything really practical, but have something you might want to consider - although it may be way off the mark. I recently read an artical in Amoena Life magazine (you can order a copy or read it online at called Bitter Pill. It is all about the side effects of taking drugs such as Tamoxifen. There are short passages from women who have had terrible problems with the drug (admittedly mostly menopause related). They have, however, cracked their problems with simple changes - the four key changes being to swap treatments, swap brands, taking your medication at a different time of the day and using rescue/herbal remedies.

You’re certainly not barking.

I’m really hopeful that your GP is helpful in setting you off in the right direction, and that the above may be of interest to you?

Good luck little lady - the Rotty is in there somewhere…


Dear Mazaroo

I do feel for you.

You’ve been through the sausage machine of bc treatment and emerged the other side a different person - and why wouldn’t you be?

Surgically altered, physically and emotionally battered and now subject to the intended chemical castration (not to mention the actual side effects) of Tamoxifen.

It’s no wonder you are at a low ebb. A lot of what made you the feisty person you were has been removed, destroyed or is currently being suppressed. It’s such a crap deal.

I hope you have a good GP who can listen and make worthwhile suggestions and sensible referrals. (Libido and body image problems (which may be the least of your worries - not sure?) are rife in connection with bc treatment and the medical equivalents of WD40 are of limited help. Any kind of hormone based remedy has to be approached with caution and may be completely contra-indicated).

Don’t be too hard on yourself - you’ve been through a lot, and I imagine your OH has, too. BC messes with lots of heads.

As others have said, it’s a good idea to seek help - and to know from us here that you are not alone and in their thoughts.

DO go on the cruise!



Hi Mazaroo,
I can only echo what others have said and can understand how you are feeling.
I think maybe contact your bcn mine was really helpful and supportive even though I am in Cornwall and she is in Manchester.
I think your husband is trying to do his best in booking a cruise. Poor men they never seem to do the right thing, do they? I hope you can both enjoy it together and that you are able to relax and find the new you.
Take care.
Love Debsxxx

Mazaroo - I found your comments refreshing and honest. If you are going mad, then I am too!!

I found your comments were a double of me!!! - so I must be ‘barking’ too!

My poor old hubbie takes the blunt of it all - and he does try his best but it is never right. I am aggressive, miserable, bad-tempered, intolerant, lazy, all these things and more - and I know it! It is so out of character for me. I used to be placid, friendly, co-operative, hardworking, all the positive things. Perhaps I am clinically depressed too - but I think it is the tablets I am taking and I am hoping at the end of the 5 years I shall be back as I was. I am 3 years down the line and my surgeon has said - only 2 more years to go - so here’s hoping!!

I have found going regularly to a breast cancer support group and receiving healing and reflexology has helped me a lot.

How wonderful to be going on the cruise - but I empathise with your comments about this! Your comments on this made me smile, knowingly!!

I am sure we will come through this and then be laughing about it afterwards……… Hope our hubbies can stand the course!

Hi Mazaroo,
It could of been me writing your post as thats exactly how I feel too, I can usually drag myself bsck up but at the moment can’t seem to do that.
I too am on citalopram…and diazepam and zolpidem, have been on them since dx 5 years ago.
I don’t like myself at all, hate my figure, my hair everything.
We have severe financial problems…due to husbands ex and csa…consequently I have to declare myself bankrupt on 18th september…trying to fill out forms for that, go to work and put on a front of being happy.

I know you are worried about uterine problems too…which is bound to be making you worry…and I’m certainly not going to say…don’t worry etc.,…because know I would too.

Try going back to your GP…maybe you do need a change of medication,
have you considered councelling…or is that a route you’d rather not take?

I think BC does change us all, and it niggles away at us all the time, yes we can push it away now and then but its always lurking…the what if’s…etc.,

Its good you’ve let out your feelings and you should continue to do so, we all understand and are here for you.

Karen x

What can I say thank you all so much for taking the time to reply I knew that this site and the wonderful users would not fail me .I am making a doctors appt as soon as they open on Tuesday and I am going to lookfor a bc support group near me …thanx it means so much x

Morning Mazaroo, Just to let you know I am thinking about you and hope you will get the help and support you deserve and need.
Please keep in touch and let us know how you are doing,even if you are down and need a good scream and rant. As the old saying goes better out than in!

Mazaroo - you have some really good replies here.
Maybe some of them should shown to your GP when you go?
I hope you will soon be feeling better. X

Mazaroo, I was dx Feb08 so not as far after treatment as you but can identify with many of the feelings you describe. I think after treatment is far worse sometimes than during it as living with bcs after effects are underestimated. The depression, frustrations, side effects of arimidex/tamoxifen etc, the change in body and mind totally change and can destroy your self confidence.I feel fat and bloated. I had depression before bc but it had been ok for the last few years. bc and a sudden bereavement have totally sent me to the ‘dark place’ again on many occasions. I hope you can get some support from your GP with your depression as i know how bleak it can make you feel. The support group in my area did not work out for me but you will hopefully have better luck with this.
Thinking of you and hope you can get the support you need.

Rach xxx

Hi Mazaroo,
I hope your doctors appointment goes well ,
I have suffered from depression for a long time but only after treatment for BC I finally insisted on anti depressants.
My doctor was reluctant to give them ,but they have made an amazing difference so much that I wish I had asked for them a long time ago
the best way i can describe it is that I finally started to feel normal!!

I never believed that medication would actually help,but my life has been so much improved by taking them ,only two months after starting
I was also irritable ,angry ,flying off the handle and alienating myself from friends and family.
If your medication is not suiting you make sure you insist on a change,it is really worth it ,keep going until you get what you need
best wishes

Hi All …my Citalopram has been upped a dose ! Yipeee:{…still dont know if I am coming or going ! am trying my hardest to kep it together but it is soo hard …I thank you all for taking the time to reply to me hopefully things will improve in time …I wuld just love to get up one day …after having a full nights sleep !!! and feel normal …will that ever happen I wonder …time will tell watch this space !
My life just sems so full of stress and worry at the moment but I know that I am certainly not alone in this especially with this disease hanging over us all …hope yu are all doing okay in whatever stage of your BC journey you may be at xxxxxxx

Hi mazaroo,
Pleased you had some success with doctor.
How high a dose are you on now? I am on 20mg a day.
Hope things settle down for you soon.
Karen x

Hi Mazaroo, hope things are getting better. just wanted to say, I was where you are at a few years ago, had got depressed after 1st bc and on Seroxat then my dad died a few years later and the way he died was so sad, he was very deluded and scared and basically, went mad. He died in a psychiatric unit while they were trying to figure out what was wrong. Out of 8 kids I was main carer and saw him every night for 3 months and was just knackered, physically and emotionally. I started to hate my OH, to the point where we were selling the house etc. We were so close to parting I can’t tell you, and then, somehow we didn’t, and we started to talk. That was 4 years ago and we have had our best 4 years since then - we are so close and so happy. This is a very long winded way of saying you can get back from that position, and I hope you do. I hope the extra Citalopram supports the other issues such as how you feel about yourself etc.
I know I am vulnerable in this way, and now see a psychologist based at the hosp thro’ bc unit and that is v helpful. Do you have that service available to you? might be worth thinking about
I hope you have a fab time on the cruise and that, generally, you feel a lot better soon
love, Monica xx

Hi Mazaroo…lots of good advice already, also wanted to suggest that if your husband’s drinking bothers you you might want to think about contacting Alanon. The helpline number is 020 7403 0888, you can talk to someone and find out if there’s a meeting nearby you can go to. Sounds like you need all the support you can get at the moment, there are lots of people in the same kind of situation, tho not all with BC obviously, and it’s unlikely to do any harm at least!