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TW: Meltdowns

Yesterday afternoon I had a massive meltdown. It was one of the worst I've had in a long time. As part of the meltdown, I came extremely close to SH, although I didn't go through with it thankfully (and just to clarify I will be safe). The worst part was the meltdown was over something so silly/small that for most people wouldn't matter at all.


This is definitely something I need to bring up with my psychiatrist. I don't want to self diagnose, but I've noticed in hindsight that these small things seem to be getting to me a lot more over the last couple of months, although most of the time it doesn't result in a full-blown meltdown.


To be honest I've got no idea how I got through the meltdown - only that I did. Does anyone have any strategies/tips of how to deal with meltdowns - both in the moment and afterwards? I'm just at a complete loss as to how something so insignificant led to something so big.

Re: TW: Meltdowns

Okay, I have to ask, what do you mean by meltdown? Because I do have tips that help me during autistic meltdowns, but this doesn't sound like one of those.

Re: TW: Meltdowns

@trashconverters To tell you the truth I really don't know. I have been diagnosed with autism, but I don't know if this is related to that or not. Now you ask the question, I guess I got really distressed really quickly, and it took a while for me to calm down. Things just didn't work out the way I'd hoped and it spiralled from there... I hope that helps you understand where I'm coming from.


Re: TW: Meltdowns

Well for me, I try to get myself out of the situation and away from the problem if I can. Not finding a solution (yet), but if I nosedive into those sort of feelings I don't think rationally, so I'll avoid the problem for a while.


For me, it's the lack of control that really freaks me out, so I'll do something that I can control, like play a video game that I've played before or go to my favourite book and find and reread my favourite parts.


Is there anything in particular that esculates meltdowns that you might have control over?

Re: TW: Meltdowns

@mrmusic I've experienced the meltdowns you describe for years. They really can be very inconvenient and frustrating. Have they ever happened in public? What has helped for your autistic meltdowns? Could you use the same strategies? Have you been tested for any medical conditions which could cause these symptoms? I'd have a chat to your GP and psychiatrist. They could arrange some tests to see if there's anything physically causing your symptoms. 


I find I cope better if I can control the physiological sensations caused by the anxiety as soon as they hit(through deep breathing or talking myself through what's happening at a biological level) rather than waiting for them to manifest completely. I also ackowledge the other person's views straight away so we can focus on compromising on the solution. often people simply want what is best for us and it helps immensely to expresss this openly so they see you are willing to accept that although things may not go your way, you are still willing to adjust your expectations between what you want to happen and what is practical. 


obviously there are times it doesn't work. 


When it it happens, I apologise, give a reason and come up with a plan to minimise their frequency and duration in the future. Over time, it happens less and less and you also get better at dealing with it and identifying triggers. Some days you will feel you will never get them under control but with patience it'll happen. I don't have the answers for what will work for you. That's for you to decide as every situation is different and we all have different needs and resources available to us. 


I hope you get some answers as soon as possible. 

Re: TW: Meltdowns

@trashconverters Thanks so much for your tips, I know I will find them useful, and I'm sure others will as well.


I guess that I like to have things planned very exactly (e.g. I will catch this particular train, rather than the next one), and if something happens to disrupt that, then that can result in a meltdown (although to be fair, it doesn't usually). I don't know whether I've talked on here about the meltdown I had a while back because I couldn't get a whipper snipper working... I think I need to try and be more mindful of exactly what's happening with my emotions in order to de-escalate the situation, as well as being able to recognise that it's happened, and try and move on rather than dwell on the negativity.


@Shadow I'm really sorry you can relate to the situation, it's so hard isn't it? I have experienced them in public before, although I'm trying to keep my emotions in control until I get to a private space, and then let myself have the meltdown afterwards. It's not going so well, but I guess I will get better with time? At least I hope it will.


The other thing is that I tend to internalise everything, so usually other people aren't affected directly by the meltdown (i.e. I blame myself for the situation, rather than someone else). That's what nearly led to the SH lapse yesterday. So yes, I do agree that this needs to be brought up with professional support. I'll do this in my next psych appointment.

Re: TW: Meltdowns

@mrmusic I'm sorry if that sounded condescending. Sometimes I don't express things as well as I'd like. I'm sorry I don't have any suggestions regarding how to cope In public but good luck! 😄

Re: TW: Meltdowns

Hey @mrmusic I think the point you made about being more aware of your emotions when unexpected or less than desirable things are going on is an important one.

What I'm hearing is that these meltdowns are occurring when you're feeling really intensely and it seems as though the intensity of your emotions are disproportionate to the cause, is that right?


I'm glad you didn't SH - well done!! Smiley Happy

// Spiral outward, keep going. //

Re: TW: Meltdowns

It was fine @Shadow, no need to worry! Smiley Happy


@letitgo Pretty much spot on. It's so frustrating when it happens. I've been doing a lot better over the last couple of days, which is a relief. Heart