Given my current regular play dates with the Black Dog I thought it was time to revisit another old blog post.
One thing that is synonymous with depression is anti-depressants. They are often seen as the cure-all for depression and something that anyone suffering from it will take. And something I was reluctant to take.
My GP originally prescribed them for me while I was on the waiting list for counselling. A little short term bandage to help stop me going further down my rabbit hole. But the thought of taking something to alter my brain chemistry is a tough sell for me..
If I started to feel better, what would happen when I was taken off them? Would the effect stop?
If the chemistry of the brain is what makes me, well me – then if I am taking drugs to alter that am I still me?
Ok – I’ll be honest. It’s easy for me to get lost in a spiral of “what if”. It’s one of my, let’s call them, quirks. And one I have learnt to control now (well 99.9% of the time) with the help of a great therapist. If these pills were to help me, why should I even second guess them? If heaven forbid I was diagnosed with a physical illness and there was a medicine available to cure it would I hesitate? I would certainly read the side effects and base my decision on that, but I would hope to think medicine issued to the general public would not have guaranteed side effects like turning my skin bright green (if it was bright purple I may be inclined to take it anyway…).
Taking the pills was by no means scary (why would it be?). The hard part at the start was remembering to take them! I can now recommend several wonderful apps for your phone that help with this little task. The world did not end and I did not turn into Frankenstein’s monster. It took a while for any noticeable improvement but that was to be expected. It also did take a few different varieties to find one that didn’t mess with my sleep.
The What If spiral also turned out to be unfounded, however many scripts my head decided to write. So suffice to say, the little pills became part of my tool kit. One I must admit I now try to go to only when the Black Dog has been at the gym pumping steroids before he comes for a visit. But one nevertheless I will take out and use to help me when I need it.