My inner turmoil.

by statia on February 14, 2012

One of my biggest demons is medication. I really have no other way to put it. There are millions of people on some sort of anti-depressant nowadays, and yet, it’s still a stigma. Honestly, I don’t even really feed into the stigma. Obviously, if I’ve told the internet about it. But my mental anguish about taking medication runs high. Kind of funny, no?

Here’s the thing. I have no judgement whatsoever about other people taking medication. I mean, if you need help, there’s no question. But for me, I feel like it’s a crutch. A band-aid. And not just me, personally, I think that way about everyone. And what I mean, by that, because that sounded like some giant contradiction, is that, the actual medication itself, is just masking a problem, rather than actually fixing it, as a general whole. Because you’re not weak if you need the medication. But it’s a fact that most people don’t actually get the true help they need. They mask it with medication. And I’m not excluding myself from that. Because at one point or another, I’ve done the medication without therapy.

Part of my therapy, was trying to come to terms with needing a medication. I’m not accepting it whole heartedly. I had to go back on medication, which for me, feels like I’m a failure. My defeatist attitude, getting me nowhere, I had to explore why this is such an issue with me. I brought it up one day, in my lovely little group. The therapist explained the whole therapy success by itself.  Medication success by itself, and of course, medication plus therapy, together equaling greater success. Studies have been done.  I haven’t yet really read up on these studies. I’m trying to take things one day at a time. This was explained on a much more vague level at the hospital. But that fog prevented it from sinking in. Funny, how hearing it from someone with less credentials than a doctor, can make you more accepting of it. Hearing it from doctors, whose sole job is to push medication, is another issue for me.

I’m still struggling with it, but not as much as before. My inner hippie wants to find something that works on balancing out the brain chemicals, more naturally, without the shitty side effects. St. Johns and all of that stuff isn’t really something that works.   Maybe at some point, I’ll actually be OK without the aid of a chemical. I’m sure it’ll be after bucket loads of therapy. I guess in the meantime, I’ll swallow that “jagged little pill.”

{ 6 comments }

daisy February 14, 2012 at 8:34 am

I was able to convince my husband to get on medication, but I can’t convince him to also add therapy to the mix. I think he would really benefit from it, but as of yet, no go.

Best wishes for you on your journey.

Wendy February 14, 2012 at 9:34 am

I feel you, Alanis. And not in the hot way. I was so adamant that I didn’t need medication for those same reasons, but holy cow. When I stay on it regularly, it’s to the point now where I can *feel* the difference. But I totally understand what you’re dealing with. And good for you for doing therapy + meds. I can’t make myself find another therapist even though I know that would help me even more.

Also, you’re awesome.

electriclady February 14, 2012 at 11:36 am

Here’s how I thought of it way back when. For me, being depressed was like being at the bottom of a very deep dark hole that I couldn’t see any way out of. Being on medication helped me to stand up and peep my head over the edge of the hole. I was still in the hole, but I could see that there was something outside the hole, which I couldn’t before. And that’s when the therapy could actually take hold and work. Because there was no point trying to climb out of the hole when I couldn’t even see how to get out.

river February 15, 2012 at 5:07 am

“medication is just masking the problem”
Yes, it is. Why? Because often the problem is not fully understood, so a true cure cannot yet be found. In the case od depression there are so many different types and so many different triggers and people react to depression in so many different ways, there cannot possibly be a “cure” Medications are tried and adjusted time and again to help a person live as normally as possible. And there is no shame in this. Think about a different kind of illness for a minute. Let’s say you have diabetes, or asthma, and staying alive depends on you taking your medication. you wouldn’t feel ashamed of needing a daily dose of insulin? or carrying around an inhaler to help you breathe? This is how you should see your depression medication. As a necessary part of your life. Use the therapy as well, by all means, but don’t be focussing on the fact that you have to take that pill every day.

Karen February 21, 2012 at 8:04 pm

Given the choice of not being able to get out of the bed and crying if a mouse poots or taking a pill and being able to function, give me the pill any day. I understand your reaction. I don’t look at it as if it is a crutch. I think about not being able to function without it. The inability to feel everything or nothing at all.

T February 22, 2012 at 10:18 pm

You said “I’ve done the medication without therapy.” and what I did was the therapy without the medication, and I just couldn’t shake that horrible feeling. That lonely, hopeless, do-I-even-care-to-try-anymore feeling. Then I tried it, because I HAD to do something. I dealt with all the emotional baggage and I couldn’t shake the physical feeling. That stupid little bitter pill pulled me out of that desperate feeling. Even though I hated every second of being on it. Just think of the feeling of accomplishment you’ll have when you can quit that jagged little pill cause you’re all better, and you feel all better, and you KNOW you’re all better. That day will come.

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