The medication question

My PillsThese are my pills. The pills that I take every day. When I was younger I really wanted help, but I couldn’t get it (it’s complicated). I never really imagined that help would take the form of medication, more just someone to talk to. In my head it was the classic therapy on the couch, with the wise psychiatrist asking me about my feelings. When I was a little older, say 18, I was very anti-medication, I didn’t want to depend on anyone or anything else. I’m pretty certain now that without these meds I wouldn’t be alive today. Whether I’m happy about that or not, I haven’t yet decided.

Above-pictured are my daily doses of an SSRI (a type of antidepressant), my sleeping pills and a mood stabilizer.

My attitude to medication now is that its something that helps me to be ok enough to actually work on my problems. I have to admit I’m not doing so well at that right now, but my mood has improved in the last month. 2011 was a horrible year, and 2012 didn’t start well either, but things may be looking up a little recently.

For people with mild or episodic depression, I think that meds can be super helpful. Honestly for me they haven’t made me feel that much better, I’ve still been hospitalized twice while on medication and to the ER once more. But I guess they have made enough difference to keep me alive. I’m very afraid of being medicated for the rest of my life, of relying on some little pills for my sanity. Of being in the thrall of some substance.

The side effects for me haven’t been too bad, in general. So I would say that if medication may help you, then take it. But don’t treat it as a cure, because it’s not, and don’t expect it to instantly fix you, because it won’t. And don’t feel bad that you need it, because everyone is different. Some people need coffee to get through the day, and that’s a drug addiction.



7 thoughts on “The medication question

  1. Great post! May I ask if the sleeping pills are to counteract side effects of the meds or did you have insomnia prior to?

    Sometimes I wonder, if the stigma to mental illness wasn’t so bad, would people like you and I have waited so long (likely til our disorder became unbearable and thus harder to fix) before we reached out for help?

    • I am not sure what started my insomnia, but I’ve had problems sleeping for a few years. It’s definitely got worse since I’ve been on meds.
      Yes definitely the stigma prevented me from talking to anyone about it for the first 20-something years of my life… I’m writing a book about mental health issues right now, it’s completely open about depression and stuff. It would be nice to think that would help!

      • That’s really cool, what approach are you taking in the book you’re writing?

        Meds definitely don’t promote quality sleep. I’ve always been a pretty deep sleeper, I would sleep all the way through until my alarm goes off or the sun wakes me but when I take SSRIs I wake up periodically throughout the night.

      • yeah I just switched to taking mine in the morning… I’ll see if it helps.
        My book is fiction, but it’s going to deal a lot with how most people don’t understand mental health issues and can’t talk about them. We grow up learning that it’s not ok to talk about suicide or suicidal feelings, and that creates a lot of issues, particularly in people who already find it difficult to share feelings.

      • That sounds like it’ll be a great story. I’ve always wanted to write a book that would bring about a readers sympathies while they can relate to them and reveal at the end of the story that the person was really somebody they would normally look down on. But writing about something like that or mental health issues in general is very tough task to do without turning most people away, imho

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s