Interesting read this one, I has prompted me to think quite a bit especially with regard to myself.
I have anxiety disorder resulting in depression and OCD, this is caused by a number of things; brain chemistry, genetic predisposition and environmental factors. It's something that has only been formally diagnosed in the last year, but looking back I believe I have been affected by this much of my adult life. I know that I am not an easy person to live with, but I truly appreciate the love and ongoing support of my wife and family, without it I am not certain I would be here today.
I am working through it, I was taking Sertraline which is a Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor (SSRI) but it made my face numb. I am now taking Venlafaxine which is a Serotonin Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitor (SNRI). In addition to this I am also undertaking Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) to develop coping strategies.
The medication, whilst I was against it initially (thinking I could sort myself out) has been invaluable in getting to a place where I can think clearly. The CBT has been equally as important by providing a safe environment to challenge my negative thoughts. I have other things that help, exercise, music and the outdoors. Despite this, I have good days and bad days.
What I will say is that when I am low, withdrawn or simply unable to cope I behave in a frightened irrational manner. Thankfully this happens less now thanks to the above treatment and support, but I am unsure if it will ever go away fully. At the very least I am now in a position to openly acknowledge my difficulties, and show my appreciate for those who continue to love and support me.