What I Hated the Least Today 101/365: Cured?

25 comments
Random meds for mad people
Random meds for mad people

I’ve been on (and occasionally off) antidepressants probably since I was born. I’ve always been such a happy kid. As I’ve been busy being productive (when not procrastinating) for the last few weeks, it happened that I ran out of my meds and spent a while without them (a while means about three weeks in this case). Today I finally got down to wasting the time of everyone involved and went for an appointment with my therapist.

I’ve been feeling shockingly well since I stopped popping prescribed pills. Among the astonishing side-effects of not using antidepressants, I found out these:

  • I no more sleep twelve hours a day. The extra four to six hours a day come in rather handy. I can now sit through an entire boring class without falling asleep. This makes a particular difference when you’re the teacher.
  • I stopped feeling suicidal because I can’t be bothered. Now I incline to wait for my natural decease of whichever disease caused by smoking / stress / exertion / any combination thereof should befall me.
  • I stopped craving food. I find no difference between eating a steak and eating my disgusting cooking, which usually involves soya, tofu and crisp bread (not all at the same time, if it’s any relief). This is quite practical when you cope with random people who constantly accuse you of being pregnant while you’re just fat.

I consulted these happenings with my therapist and approached her for advice. Sadly, she’s also on antidepressants, so she’s presumably too medicated to care. I tried to encourage her to share her opinion, using the stock phrase You tell me, I’m not a doctor. It didn’t work. Probably because I am a doctor, if not of medicine. Eventually the therapist concluded that I could just as well go without medication.

To my question as to whether I’m now officially cured or what, she replied nothing. I have my doubts about the curability of depression, but I decided against intimating them to her because, you know, I’m a doctor (I’m also a huge smartass, for your information). I wonder if my public health system-employed therapist is paid per patient because she insisted on setting another appointment for six weeks later. Whatever it’s good for. We just keep on disappointing each other.

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25 comments on “What I Hated the Least Today 101/365: Cured?”

  1. Probably the pills made you suicidal. Were you kidding when you said you’d been on antidepressants since you were a child?? I don’t like antidepressants, but that’s just my personal opinion, mind you. I’ve tried many of the most “popular” ones, and they did nothing. Probably because I wasn’t depressed — just an adequate reaction as my life was falling apart. I don’t think I needed treatment for that, but rather to deal with the situation.

    Your therapist doesn’t sound all that good.

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    1. Yes, you got me, I was kidding when I said I was taking antidepressants as a kid. I “only” started when I turned eighteen or so. I fiercely hate both antidepressants and therapists. I’m a difficult patient. I was feeling that my antidepressants weren’t doing anything for me for a long time, but I never quite managed to agree with my therapist on something. When I told her I was ok, she said let’s continue the treatment. When i told her that I’m not ok and would rather be dead, she said let’s continue the treatment. A broken record. On her defence, she probably has more difficult cases to handle – she works at the psychiatric unit where patients are hospitalised – so let’s not blame her that she doesn’t care so much about patients who are sort of functioning. I’m waiting with anticipation what happens next, now that I’m cured, as I say, or what.

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      1. ‘Cured’ … perhaps you were never ‘ill’ in the first place?! I think, and this is my very personal opinion, they seem way too happy to prescribe this stuff. Perhaps because it didn’t DO anything to me. I’ve lived with severe anxiety at times, and the only thing that helped was benzodiazepines (or booze LOL). The downside of that is obviously that you get addicted, but strangely enough, I never did. Hardly any doctor there, would prescribe them … for nine years I suffered.

        I would never have dared to say something like that (“I would rather be dead”) to a doctor back home, because they would have admitted me, right away, to a psychiatric clinic. I don’t know how it is here.

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        1. There was a time when I knew that I needed the medication, so I assume I was ill. I also assume that I’m not cured really, but hopefully have arrived at a phase when I won’t need to waste my time and strain my nerves by seeing a therapist who I suspect has more issues than me anyway.

          I told the therapist about my death wish deliberately, as I was actually feeling that way, and also in order to impress on her that I really wasn’t well and would like help, but it left her cold (“Let’s go on with the usual medication” is her mantra). You don’t get admitted here unless you consent, so no risk was involved 😉 The fellow patients would probably drive me even more crazy than before.

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          1. Personally, I think one could be born/wired depressed … some kind of chemical imbalance. I find it astonishing she didn’t react to what you said. Normally, they would start asking you questions, like if you had ever though out any plans … like, how to do it, and if you’d said yes, they certainly would have tried to have you admitted. I don’t remember the rules about consent, but when they consider you a danger to yourself (or others), I believe they can take you in. And yes, the other patients would drive you nuts.

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          2. Agreed entirely. Some people are just naturally low-spirited, like me. Sometimes it perversely cheers me up. I was not as much surprised as rather disappointed that my psychiatrist didn’t look bothered that she might be losing her patient to suicide. I guess she has enough patients already 😉 My sister-in-law actually was to a six-week voluntary in-hospital therapy, and she claimed it helped her immensely. I hated what she described they did there though. Therapy groups, morning warm-up exercises, singing etc. – what the heck, I don’t want to go to a grown-up version of a summer camp.

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          3. I’m afraid that could be the case … what your sister-in-law described. Good quality therapy is something I do believe in (now). That wasn’t always the case 😉

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  2. I too have been on anti depressants for many many years Mara. I believe that some of us, you in this case, can finally come off of them safely. not so for me. I don’t like me when I am off of mine. I am happy that you can get away from them. There is no doubt in my head that these pills make me kind of loopy but it’s worth it.

    Like medical doctors, not every therapist is worth his or her salt.

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    1. I have the same feelings – the medication should be helping you but it causes a great deal of other issues. Right now it looks like it’s best for me to rely on myself and not to get further messed up by pills. I can’t even begin to say how great it is that I got rid of the negative side effects as described in my post. I’ve been struggling with chronic fatigue most of my adult life and lo, all it took to solve this problem was to go off pills. It’s a shame that the range of doctors with whom I consulted my problem didn’t come up with the solution until I did.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I do love your with and sarcasm, Mara ! You have such a wonderful, self-deprecating style of writing. It sounds like your anti-depressants reached their use by date. I find if I ‘forget’ to take or use something, then I no longer need it. Give your therapist the flick too – perhaps you could conveniently ‘forget’ the mutual dis-appointment 🙂

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    1. Ha, you got me, I do deliberately cultivate the deadpan style. It’s confusing, as I’ve found out, because many people take me literally. Especially those people who first meet me.

      Dis-appointment! That’s an excellent way to spell my disappointing appointment! I harbour no hard feelings against my therapist, I’m rather sorry for her because she looks so depressed. I guess I can’t really blame her that she doesn’t satisfy me. I’m hard to please when it comes to therapy.

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  4. I have to say Mara I am NOT on anti-depressants though after communicating with me these past few days you may be thinking I should be….I take a whole bunch of other stuff designed to keep me alive a few days/weeks/hopefully years.
    That you can feel ok without your med is a great thing I would think….the cost factor is good, you are richer now to indulge in other addictive traits and the boost to your self esteem knowing you can live ok without them must be a bonus…..I wish you well……

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    1. My sincere congratulations to you for retaining your mental health – it’s not a little thing. I do hope our conversations won’t throw you into the depths of depression. I also hope that your medication works better than my antidepressants. Stay safe and see you around 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Aside from that I’m sincerely sorry you feel this way, it’s a really interesting post and conversation. If I had written something similar to this, I’d gotten oodles of comments, telling me how “BRAVE” I was for writing such and “HONEST” post. I think I brought it up in some blog even. It throws me off a bit, because I’m not brave at all … I just write, about whatever is on top of my mind. I know they don’t mean ‘brave’ as in being a hero … that it’s merely a way of speaking, but I still have a hang-up about it. Probably because English is my second language, and a cultural difference … perhaps. Where I come from, people just love to talk about their depressive episodes 🙂

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    1. No need to feel sorry, it’s just a fact of life and everyone has their issues, don’t they? You’re so right about the BRAVE and HONEST comments when someone blogs about mental health. It’s probably a cultural thing, I assume, I think that some cultures encourage and commend talking about one’s mental health; while in my culture it’s no big deal. It’s like talking about your broken leg. Bad luck, but no big deal and no bravery is involved. It shouldn’t surprise me if the Scandinavians were fond of discussing their depressive episodes – it must be the climate of the land…

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      1. LOL Yeah, it struck me after a while in this thread … that nowhere did I feel inclined to tell you how brave you were! It must be cultural. Back home it was totally alright to talk about stuff like this … nobody would raise an eyebrow. In fact, I think people like to talk about it . When someone asks “how are you?” there, one must be prepared to get the full state of their health. 🙂

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        1. Awe, thank you for not even feeling inclined to telling me that I was brave, I would probably be discomforted. I don’t believe in brave, you just cope because you have to, not because you choose to be a hero or what.

          I do like it when the “how are you” phrase means something. I don’t like the phrase when it’s used as a cliché, but when it’s an actual question, go ahead!

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          1. Here, “how are you” is a greeting phrase. Nobody expects you to reply. Took me some time to adjust to that LOL

            I feel uneasy when they tell me I’m brave for writing a blog post in WordPress so I don’t feel like doing it anymore.

            Liked by 1 person

        1. I think I saw the post but didn’t read it closely enough. Now I did and I agree with what you’ve written. I use the word “brave” sparingly, and never for things like blogging or cleaning your house, though it does take a degree of effort and will too to do these things.

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