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  • Feeling down

    Hello.... My name is Marty. I am a 24 year old female who has suffered with dry eye for awhile now. I started wearing contact lens at 14 and I tolerated them ok for a few years. They usually were ok until the end of the day, then they felt dry. In the past 2 or 3 years, I had to alternate days with contacts and glasses, because the contacts were starting to bother my eyes. I decided to have Lasik in September 2005. The doctor told me that the Lasik would not make my dry eyes worse, so I had it done. It has been over a year now. As far as my vision goes, I can see good, 20/20, but the dryness is a different story.

    I cry as I write this because I still can not believe that I have dry eye and how much of an impact this has had on me. I have always had mild depression, but having dry eye has been devastating. People who do not have it have no idea what kind of hell it is. I think about it all the time. I feel very alone, because none of my family understands, and besides, what can they do? I do not want to make them feel bad. I feel such shame because my husband and I paid so much for this surgery, and now I am in worse shape. I feel like I can not talk to him about either. I have bottles of eye drops all over the house, and my 2 year old little boy knows exactly what they are for. When I put drops in my eyes, he is always wanting me to put some in his too. I pretend to put some in his eyes, then when he goes out of the room, I burst into tears. I seem to do that alot. My eyes would get so dry that I would think of something sad to make me tear up for some relief. I do not have to do that now. I can tear up at the drop of a hat. My emotions are such a mess. The only reason I have kept it together is for my little boy. I deal with things that are just crazy. I love shopping, but I can not go because malls, and other stores like Wal-Mart and Lowes dry my eyes out like crazy. I have to go to Wal-Mart, but I do it really fast, and I do not look at people in the eye because I know they are beet red and people think I am on drugs. God I do not know how I deal with this... My future does not look bright. I would love to work in a hospital, but they dry my eyes out too. I quit nursing school because of my eyes. I am not able to carry on a conversation with people very well because I am always thinking about my eyes. This disease has been devastating to me, and the sad thing is that its my fault, I really can blame no one, not God, not the doctors, nobody but me. I am paying for my vanity. My coping skills are not the greatest right now, I am really down. It puts alot of extra stress on me, beside worrying about normal things, like bills , taking care of my son, etc.. I do not let my son or anyone else see my cry, but I do cry alot. I have thought about killing myself alot, but I just can't leave my son without a mother. If it were not for him, who knows? Like I said, I keep it together for him.

  • #2
    Dear Clintsmommy Marty

    You sound so sad. I hope you can find some support here and come to know you are not alone, and that people here truly understand how you feel.

    You are full of despair--please ask for a doctor's help--for the depression. I don't know what else to say, but I am glad you found Dry Eye Talk. This forum has really helped me. I visit here everyday, even if I don't post. It's my tie to hope, to practical methods and products, to knowledge.



    • #3
      Get some help

      We all understand what you are going thru. There are a lot of people here suffering from the dry eye situation and some of them have had lasix also. Please talk to your family doctor about the depression you have. This is a lot to bear and maybe you need some help getting thru it.

      There are a lot of things you can do to help you manage your eyes. Have you read thru the back posts? And have you seen a specialist to make sure there isn't something else wrong with your eyes?

      Keep posting. We care.



      • #4

        I am saddened by your post and just said a prayer for your healing, both for your eyes and as well as your spirit. As the others have mentioned, there are many helpful posts discussing different products and routines you can do to help with the dryness, pain, redness, etc. The one thing that I just started doing was rinsing my eyes in the shower first thing in the morning with Unisol saline (non-preservative). It really feels heavenly. You have so much life ahead of you and have a marriage and a beautiful (I'm sure) baby boy. Keep the faith. Things will get better. And please get to a Dr (even if it is your family physician) for depression. You will be able to talk to them (since you struggle discussing this with your Hubby) and they can help you! An opthamologist would be an excellent idea as well if you haven't gone lately. God Bless! Judy
        Last edited by Judy; 17-Nov-2006, 05:21.


        • #5

          Your post really hit me hard. You are exactly where I was four years ago. Exactly. I had two kids and stong urges to have another. Then I had LASIK and my whole life fell apart. I was a wreck and could barely get out of bed. It took me a good long time to mentally find a good place...years really. I also found a bit of manageablity for my eyes. They are still horrible, but I have found what keeps the burning at bay. This has been key to my getting on with life.

          Regarding the depression, I have had to resort to antidepressants in the last four years since LASIK. I had tapered off and back on for years. They did help, but I never really wanted to stay on them if I could help it. When I decided to have another baby last year, I tapered off and managed to stay off. I've been without them for well over a year now. This is HUGE considering there were many, many days where I couldn't even get up to take care of myself or my kids.

          Our choices are we can hope for sudden death or a fatal accident, or we can push on for the sake of those who love and need us. Eventually, you'll realize you are pushing on for sake of yourself, too. Keep the faith, Marty. Lean on whoever is available to you. Find ways to pull yourself out. Get some antidepressants for starters. This will help you get moving and will allow you the energy to find ways to help yourself. Dig deep on this site for what people do on a daily basis to keep their eyes as comfortable as possible.

          Eventually, too, you'll need to lose the guilt about having had LASIK. I did not understand in the slightest what kind of risk there was with LASIK. The industry lied to us, Marty, and continues to do it to people every day. The guilt you are feeling is wasted energy. I have also chosen not to hate all LASIK doctors or even my own. I just don't have enough energy or nastiness to even carry that kind of weight.

          I'm hesitant to suggest this, but my story titled "Diana's story" is stickied at the top of the "Your Dry Eye Story" forum.

          I wrote it when I was probably in your condition as opposed to my more collected self today. I have had more than one person tell me that they let family members read it and it helped them understand the dry eye condition far better than they were able to express it themselves. If you read it, you'll probably identify with it. Let family members read it as well. They'll understand a lot more about your condition once they have.

          I will also pray for your healing. It will start with some faith, but will be mostly your doing. You will be very proud of yourself when you find that you've managed through such a difficult time. And you will get better. Maybe you'll end up back in nursing school, maybe you'll hold off for a while. Perhaps you'll have another baby. All this is possible with dry, LASIK eyes.

          Take good care,

          Diana Telles

          Regarding your
          Never play leapfrog with a unicorn.


          • #6


            I read your story this morning and found that I was a mess by the time I got to the end of it.

            I am extremely saddened by your story yet angry that another person has been added to the questionable statistics list as a result of this surgery.

            I had lasek 13 months ago and have had dry eye ever since. My story is posted here there are some great suggestions from others that have helped me on my journey.

            Like you (and most of us here with laser induced dry eyes) we blame ourselves for our decision to have the surgery in the first place. The problem with this theory is, we didn't chose this outcome, the decision has been made, and unfortunately, we can't go back and revisit it, so we just have to learn to redirect our energy into accepting it and fight to get out lives back on track.

            I have spent countless hours wrestling with my decision to have this but soon found that investing energy into beating myself up wasn't going to yield any dividends.

            I am so glad that you found this site and have every confidence that people here will be able to provide you with some guidance and more importantly support.

            On those moments when you feel it getting a little tough for you, pop onto this site for a visit, there are always inspirational stories floating around that give you that little glimmer of hope that you are looking for at that moment in time.

            If you don't find the inspiration here you need to find it somewhere - look inside yourself, look in the eyes of your little boy and I am sure you will find all the fight you need to help you move on, don't ever give in.

            I think it is important to get your family involved, I provided Diana's story to some of my family and friends to help them appreciate what we are dealing with.

            Most importantly I think we need to stand on the shoulders of the people that have walked this road before us. We can benefit from their guidance and inspiration to get us through this. We have the added benefit of learning from their mistakes and their trial and tribulations.

            Hang in there, this is a tough journey but we are all here to support each other on this journey.

            My thoughts are with you



            • #7
              Thanks so much for the kind and encouraging words. I was very upset when I was writing my story. I have been dealing with this alone for so long. I feel so bad now that I have read about some of the problems other people are experiencing. I really admire people who even though they are in the same or worse situation try to encourage and uplift others. I am so glad I found this website, and I hope to get to the point to where I can encourage others. I have been in such a dark place for so long. I know that I am not going to get better overnight, however, this website is a very good first step towards feeling better.


              • #8
                Best of luck in moving forward. I have to be honest, when I first found a web site featuring miserable LASIK casualties, I became even more depressed. The fact that other people were out there debunked my flimsy theory that my dry eye was unfounded and that I was maybe temporarily insane!

                But no such luck.

                As it turned out, I am most grateful for the folks on DEZ. I'm sorry that they have to be here, but I'm happy to have them.

                Clintsmommy, if you ever need to contact someone my email address is Sometimes it takes some one-on-one to get through it. Plenty of people helped me along the way.

                Never play leapfrog with a unicorn.


                • #9

                  I'm following some pretty tough acts--some extensions of warmth, understanding, kindness, caring, and compassion that are the hallmarks of this site and really representative of their respective writers.

                  In other words ... though I'm sorry you NEED to be here ... I'm so glad you came.

                  Your story touches all our hearts, and strikes a chord in the minds of most of us, to be sure. I can only echo the sentiments that those before me expressed, and I'll try to just lay them out plainly:

                  1) If you're having recurrent thoughts of suicide, get help ... in any way you feel comfortable ... from a qualified professional ... and now. I don't say that to scold or to preach. I say it because you're a human being and I care. Please.

                  2) Much in the way that Diana said (like many here, it's a pleasure to read her words), you have to begin imagining yourself "making friends with" your disease. I heard that when an NFL football player spoke for the American Diabetes Association. You have to work with it, not so much battle against it. There are a thousand possible things that you can try--most of which ARE found on this site--that might give you some measure of relief. It's "management," not "cure," but....that might be enough.

                  3) I agree wholeheartedly that--as natural as it feels--the guilt about the LASIK decision is a huge weight to carry, and it sounds like you've got puh-lenty on your plate without it. Take that guilt for a walk one day and tell it that you need to break up with it ... that things aren't working out, and that you need to let it go and move on with your life. The guilt will understand.

                  4) I fall back to a silly line from a silly movie, "The Rock." Nicolas Cage asks Sean Connery how they survived each day in Alcatraz. Connery says, "We nurtured the hope that there WAS hope." That's how I survive each day with my eyeballs: by believing in belief, by having faith in faith, and--as recovering alcoholics say: one day at a time. Marty: some days suck. They just do. No getting around it. But I remind myself that some days don't ... and THOSE are the one's I'm living for! I spend a lot of time looking for things that I CAN accomplish and trying really hard to put aside all the thoughts about what I can NO LONGER accomplish ... and that list is awfully long. Staying in the positive is much more than a cliche with DES. It's one of the fundamental bricks in "The Program."

                  5) I agree with the recommendations that you talk with a Psychiatrist about antidepressants, being VERY certain to evaluate (or come here and ask about) the associated risk of dry eye WITH the particular drug. Some are worse than others. My sense is that you are in that stage where it's tough to see light at the end of the tunnel. When a good antidepressant works for somebody ... suddenly ... the light at the end re-appears ... and things start to get a little easier.

                  Again, I'm so sorry for what you've gone through, but I truly hope that you'll at least reach out for some short term help ... just to get you FEELING a little better ... so that you can start to take on some of these weighty issues that are dragging you down.

                  I wish you all the best ... and ... am also here to help.



                  • #10

                    i have never had the surgery that has caused so many of the people on this forum to experience the undoubted pain and anguish of Dry eye. I am still searching as to why my own problems started two yrs ago, but i know that here on these boards i have alreday found so much to help me along, i know that you will too.

                    I am certainly no authority on eyes, nor the ways of the world or life in general, just carry on in my own little way.

                    As such how about i simply offer something a bit daft.

                    I have noticed that on my daily trip to the bathroom after waking, the walk is filled with the thoughts of what i am going to see when the bathroom light goes on and i am face to face with the mirror. As such, i have found that greeting the mirror with a big beaming smile, makes my eyes, even if only for a short time look a great deal better than when i am not smiling, sometimes even let out a laugh and stick my tongue out, then jump in the shower.

                    It's daft, has no medical benefit and perhaps may even make you feel a little nuts, but it has taught me that, during the day, if my eyes start to get me down, or if i have to meet with people, i know that if i smile, in myself i know i will look and feel better.

                    Just something that costs nothing to have in your locker.



                    • #11

                      I am so sorry to hear your story. It's very touching.
                      You got to do something quickly to improve your life. I live in Alabama too (Auburn), and you live closer to Birmingham, so get in touch with "green eyes" on this forum and she will direct you to a very good doctor in there. Anyway I'll ask her to send you a PM with the contact info. You must do something ASAP about your depression, which is manageable.

                      Best of Luck!!



                      • #12
                        im sorry marty for ur sad story....
                        guess u have taken the wrong step forward with this lasik.....
                        but after all it is not all ur fault...who would have known dat u will get this? who would have known dat u won't cope with lasik...

                        well if u say dat ur future do not look bright....well me i have only 19 mayB, based upon ur phrase.....MY future will be very devastating......
                        i have dryeye for 3years and some months now...

                        well.. sometimes me too i think my future won't look great.... and wonder if my life will have a happy ending....
                        but you can cope with it, after all doesn't ur husband nxt to u in this bad situation......"pour le meilleur et pour le pire..."
                        ...mariage is not about just enjoying good parts...but also try to hold hands together through the bad ones....
                        after all, if he can stay with u in goodpart, why cant he stay with u in bad part..

                        i fink u must NOT keep all by urself.......having read Men r from mars, women from venus (john gray), i really believe dat u must talk to him and share it with him.... isolating state will really isolate life of each other... and frustration and depression will develop...and family life may be destroyed...
                        the only thing dat make me passed through all these sh*ts is MUSIC......good music is reallllllly GOOD!!.....wen im sad n thinking about the other world...

                        just hold on.....the life and happiness of ur son depend ENTIRELY on it...
                        If I have to choose between being happy and sad, I''ll choose being happy....... and you?... so.... stop choosing being unhappy (yeah its hard but....)....stop depressing........ live!!!


                        • #13

                          Hi Marty,
                          I empathise with you as I too had mild depression before I got a dry eye.
                          Now I feel the dry eye is a current force behind my depression. Back in August this year when my dry eye was deteriorating I found that some of my depression medication had dry eye side-effects. This cheered me up no end as I thought I had found the answer. Now, 3+ months later I have little or no improvement in the condition despite stopping beta-blockers and trying to reduce my anti-depressants. I now think the dry eye side-effects in these medications are negligible in my case.
                          Occupation - Optimistologist


                          • #14

                            I am sorry for your pain. I can relate. What I have not seen yet is what you are doing for the dry eyes in terms of treatments, doctors, specialists, plugs etc

                            Do not assume there is no hope for you until you have exhausted every option!! Doctors are not created equal either. I lived in pain under the care of this highly respected doctor who told me to just keep putting in the ointment and that "punctum plugs wouldn't help but would only make tears fall down my face".

                            He was dead wrong and he didn't care. I found a good doctor who put in 4 plugs and since then I don't have any more dry eyes. I have tons of tears. I do have to do the lid scrubs several times a day to deal with the blepharistis but I am not in pain. This doctor saved my life. DES is such a tedious problem for doctors. You need to find one who really cares about your pain. The first doctor didn't care at all, he cared mostly about doing a hundred cataract surgeries a day.

                            Tell us all what you have done in terms of treatment. Use us and all the knowledge here so we might be able to guide you if you have not exhausted your options.

                            Do not give up!! Let us help you. Tell us more.


                            • #15
                              Dry eye without Lasik

                              I am 31 y/o and have severe dry eyes and I did not have Lasik. You might have had dry eyes even if you did not get the Lasik done. Mine were dry and then one day they seemed really really dry and I couldn't wear contact since then. I don't know what caused mine. I do have anxiety and I did take Paxil. But I don't think that was the cause of my dry eyes. I have been off of it and it has not improved. So you may not have caused this with the Lasik. I might be that they were going to get dry anyway.
                              As for going to other doctors I agreed. The first doc that diagnosed me told me the same thing. He did not have good technique with the Schimmer's test and would poke my eye with the paper before he set it on my lid. Well of course then my eye would water and he would say oh you make plenty of tears. He wouldn't do plugs because he said they would water. I went to another doc that specialized in dry eye and my Schimmer's test was 2 and 4. He cautherized my bottom tear ducts closed. I did not tear except one time and I went back to him and he said that the tear duct came open. He closed it again and I had no more tearing.
                              Hope you find some more options