Antidepressants

Another sad day today but this time it’s glorious sunshine. I’ve got my running gear on but I honestly don’t know if I’ll make it out the door today.

I wanted to do a little post on antidepressants. Mainly because BlissChick has been writing about the definitions ‘mental illness’ (or mental injury) and the pills that are prescribed to ‘help’. I have always shyed away from talking about these issues because I believe I’m ‘not ill enough’. There’s only 2 or 3 days out of the 7 in the week when I feel the effects keenly of the depression, it’s been 2 weeks since I had a debilitating depressive episode, when I get an episode it only lasts for hours, not days or weeks, some days I don’t feel sad at all…. blah blah blah. Enough! Now I can only talk about my experience but my experience is not worthless. There are people on medication who do things that I can’t even imagine, like hold down a job or go on holiday. I can’t do these things, is that not debilitating?

I have never been on antidepressants, I have never wanted to go on antidepressants and I hope I never will. When I was first ‘diagnosed’ in December 2007 I just wanted to go to counselling but I was offered the pills. My doctor, who was an incredibly good doctor, referred to them as like a ‘course of antibiotics’. But… I got depressed because I was alienated, isolated, bored, lonely, in horrible living circumstances, unfulfilled, NOT because there was anything wrong with any chemicals in my brain. So my thinking is why would I need pills? So I didn’t take them and he was ok with that.

To be completely honest I haven’t had too many bad experiences justifying my not taking pills, mainly because most people don’t want to talk about depression. I wanted to heal my mind properly, I somewhat naively thought that when I came home after university I would get better. I didn’t, my mind was damaged already. I thought about pills then but I didn’t go for it. I wanted to know why my mind wasn’t functioning like it used to. Plus I didn’t trust the pills, not since it came out that they were no better than placebos. I could have started taking sugar pills in the hope they’d help me.

At the root of it all, I don’t believe that my depression is due to a whatever imbalance, or that it’s genetic. I had a bad time, I got sad, I learnt bad thought patterns that made my sadness persist. I do believe I will get better and I don’t believe (now) that I’m condemned to either be depressed for the rest of my life or that it will reoccur.

I think my stubbornness and my thinking (the same thinking that many people believe has caused my depression, more on that sometime) has saved me. I am the only person I know who has been through something like this and cured themselves. I say that with no pride, just wonder.

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5 thoughts on “Antidepressants

  1. “I got depressed because I was alienated, isolated, bored, lonely, in horrible living circumstances, unfulfilled, NOT because there was anything wrong with any chemicals in my brain”

    Really? Nice to meet you Doctor! Oh wait, you aren’t a doctor?

    How do you know?

    And if you knew, what did you go to the doctor for? You already knew why and you didn’t do what he told you to do anyway, so… you go to the doctor and when he says “this is what you need” you say “no thanks”. Hmmm. Interesting.

    You are either a) in denial (very common) or b) just a know-it-all, c) haven’t really accepted what “depressed” means. See it actually does mean that there is something going on with the chemicals in your brain. Otherwise its not called “depression”, it’s just called “I am a little princess that complains about all those “things” that are really the problem, and writes about it online but I know all the answers so I don’t listen to doctors and so I diagnose and treat myself and then wonder why I am still unhappy for 3-4 of the 7 days in every week”. I think you have the second condition. Apparently.

    • On reflection I think I would do myself an injustice if I didn’t reply to this comment, unnecessary, confused and uninformed as it is. I don’t think you are going to read it but for my own piece of mind.
      I had a very understanding, kind doctor who suggested antidepressants at the same time as referring me to the counseling service which I had wanted in the first place. I am not too sure what the health service is like where you are (America I’m guessing) but thank god for the NHS and for free counseling. My doctor was completely accepting of my decision not to take antidepressants and also aware of the fact that being a doctor is not a god-like state, he does not know everything. Anyone who puts their own well-being completely in the hands of others does so at their own risk. I have chosen not to do that, I have chosen to think for myself. I think that in this case being a know-it-all will actually help me to recover. 😉
      No one knows how the brain is affected by trauma and as far as I was aware depression is just a collection of symptoms. You treat the symptoms and you treat the condition. I have symptoms, I treat them in the best way I see fit.
      One more thing: fuck you. I don’t deserve to be talked to like that, MY decision to treat MY depression has not hurt anyone. If you want to go ahead and get blown this way and that by what this drugs company or that doctor decides is right for you then go ahead but I will not be made to feel like my suffering is my fault because I wasn’t a good little girl and I didn’t take the pills like the nice wise doctor man told me to.

  2. Brija, you GO with that second reply because I think you just encountered your first official “troll,” and they get off on being cruel…a kind of “illness” in and of itself, don’t you agree? Also, I find turning on comment moderation a very healthy idea since we post very fragile things about ourselves. There is nothing wrong with good boundaries. 🙂

    • Thanks for the support! It is a kind of illness and I do try to feel pity for people who do that, they can’t be very happy people inside. I did think about just deleting it but it had affected me too much to bury it so I decided to approve it and deal with it. I think unfortunately that troll’s attitude is quite common in our society so I wanted to answer it. Here’s to a thicker skin!

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