Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Depression/ Anti-Depression

I never really intended to be the poster child for mental health or anti-depressant medications.  It really wasn't that big of a deal to me.  The therapist thought I was depressed and would benefit from a common and long time prescribed medication. I took it and it did help me to think more clearly and to feel more like the person I am inside my head, if that makes sense. My therapist and I watched for side-effects and whether the medication was making me into someone I wasn't. It didn't.  The medicine made me feel normal, allowed me to find joy again, and peace.

At first I thought I would take this medication for the shortest time possible, maybe 4 to 6 weeks.  But both my doctor and therapist hinted that I would probably need it for months and possibly years and maybe I would even benefit from it for the rest of my life.  At any rate, there was no hurry to move away from it.  I am coming up to a year soon and I am making no plans to quit in the near future.  There are still some really big stress factories going on in my life.

I don't know of anyone who is totally comfortable announcing their medications out to the general public.  Medicine is really nobody else's business.  I doubt that anyone would question whether someone was able to know their own mind if they took blood pressure medicine or insulin.  Because I take a very low dose of an anti-depressant that I tolerate well, I had to face questions of competency in court.  I conclude that this is just wrong.  It was an intrusion on my privacy to have to defend myself for seeking mental health treatment and benefiting from it.

I am not advocating running right out there and getting on some drugs to help you handle your life.  Most of us have the inner reserves to deal with what life throws our way.  But, if I need some help or you need some help, it is nobody else's business unless there is some other indicator of poor functioning and poor judgment.

We live in an extremely stressful culture.  There are unreasonable and impossible demands made on all of us every day.  There are fewer sources of relief and support for the difficult lives we live than perhaps there were in other times and places.  It is not surprising that depression is a result of modern life.  I believe that no one should fear getting help they need so that they will not be judged or made to feel less than competent. I say, down with depression!  Don't let anyone put you down for treating it.