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Negative thoughts, vulnerable to drinking. Go to a Psychiatrist?

Hi - I got very drunk one Sunday a few weeks ago and a lot of negative thoughts about my self, my life, my self-image self-worth etc all came to the surface in one go. Following this, some members of my family have encouraged me to go to a pyschiatrist. I am afraid of the consequences of entering into formal psychiatric care on the basis of one negative episode after what has been an intensely difficult year (2 close family bereavements, a relationship break-up, change of job and the achievement of a new academic qualification). I am and always have been interested in and aware of my own emotional health and have never been afraid to confront any problems or issues in my life. I am currently attending a counsellor who has given me tools and resources to assist me in maintaining good mental and emotional health, but because I am attending a counsellor and not a psychiatrist , my family think I am trying to avoid my issues and want me to have a psychiatric assessment. I don t believe I need this but would be prepared to undergo such a process if it gave conclusive answers. I have never been prescribed medication for a mental disorder . I am 52, female, single with an adult son who lives overseas. I feel I am being rail-roaded onto a path I don t need to travel and yet, I understand their concern. I know I shouldn t drink when I m feeling vulnerable - yet, I did on this occasion and I have made myself vulnerable to the judgement of others. Should I hand over my life to be scrutinised and analysed on the basis of other people s concerns just to prove a point or can I make a stronger case for my own well-being by continuing to take responsibility in my own way and on my own terms?
Asked On : Fri, 1 Mar 2013
Answers:  1 Views:  21
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Psychiatrist 's  Response
Hello and welcome to Healthcare Magic. Thanks for your query.

Even though you have had only one episode of what appears to be depressive symptoms, it is important to have a proper evaluation, in order to have a proper understanding of your problem, so that appropriate remedial measures can be initiated.

Moreover, you say that you have been through a very stressful time of late due to your multiple situational problems. You also don't seem to be adopting healthy coping strategies for handing your stress, for example resorting to heavy drinking.

So, I think it would be worthwhile to seek professional help from a psychiatrist for a detailed psychological assessment and further management.

Wish you all the best.

Dr. Jonas Sundarakumar
Consultant Psychiatrist
Answered: Fri, 8 Mar 2013
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