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Tuesday, February 1,2011

The Dr. Happy Formula

By Dr. Bob Nozik, MD  

Dear Dr. Happy,

I’m a 22 year old married woman with a 2 year old son, Todd; my husband is in the Army in Afghanistan. What worries me is that I have no energy and no patience. I’m always yelling at Todd and fighting with my in-laws. I almost never play with Todd, preferring instead to just let the TV amuse him all day. I even wake up tired.         
Tired All Day

Dear Tired All Day,

Certainly, your life circumstances are difficult right now and clearly they are getting the best of you. In fact, I suspect that you might be clinically depressed. The first thing to do is ask your MD for a mental health evaluation as you may need meds or therapy for treating depression. Also, I would recommend that you find a support group for spouses of overseas military personnel. Seeing that you are not the only one in this predicament can be of great help as you hear what others in conditions similar to yours are doing. Also, see if you can find a way to take a break and get out of the house for a while. Perhaps you could find one or two others in your situation and trade off baby sitting.  Watching 2 or 3 other children won’t be much harder than taking care of Todd and that way you’d have 2 or 3 hours several times a week on the trade-off to do something other than child care. Your circumstances are difficult right now but taking some of the actions above should help.


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