I am against the over-prescribing of anti-depressants – not anti-depressants as a category. Over the years, I’ve come to the conclusion that the anti-depressant issue is no different than the ‘Valium’ or the ‘Opiate Pain Killers’. It’s all about profit.
I can speak about this because I was on anti-depressants for almost 15 years. I constantly built up resistance to them, then it was taper down – taper up – change prescriptions and be miserable when you do. I felt like I was on an emotional roller-coaster for much of the time. Can you even imagine what physical, emotional, and spiritual damage this type of ill-fitting prescription medication can do to a person? Yet most docs don’t even bat an eyelash when writing out these prescriptions all the while telling us they “are not addictive”. That-is-a-lie.
I was not diagnosed correctly until age 62 with Post-traumatic Stress Syndrome. When I was treated correctly, I realized that my compulsions were subsiding and along with it, anxiety and depression. I still have issues, but I deal with them differently when I strive each day for balance. I don’t need anti-depressants. I’m not convinced I ever did. I needed treatment for what was actually happening to me. Moreover, I don’t believe I’m the only one who has experienced this scenario. If it’s happening to me, it’s most likely happening to thousands upon thousands of people.
Of course, some people do need them, but not to the extent they are currently being prescribed as a “cure-all.” When 1 in 4 women in this country is on mental health medications, I believe that smacks of mind or population control. That’s just not a pretty picture nor is it moral by any stretch of the imagination.
Why I Stopped
1. The thing most people don’t realize is that withdrawal from anti-depressants feels the same as withdrawal from heroin. It’s an ugly withdrawal, yet we’re told by our doctors that they’re not addictive. That’s a lie. Period. They tell you it has an “afterlife” and then vaguely explain what that means which was never really clear to me. However, I bought it hook, line, and sinker because I was in so much emotional pain.
2. When I became homeless after the recession hit and with no insurance, I could only afford one week’s worth of pills at a time and so was going through withdrawals every week until I could get my prescription filled. It was a horrible, roller coaster way to live when already living under such dire circumstances.
3. Fast forward a few years… Oregon Health Plan doesn’t allow mail-order prescriptions, so, during the heavy snow last winter, I was snowed in and couldn’t get to the store to get my prescriptions filled so I simply went through the withdrawals and stopped altogether. I don’t recommend this, for obvious reasons, but it’s what happened to me and it was both the end and a new beginning for me.
I Seek To Open Minds
It took me six months to feel half-way normal and now after over 1.5 years, I don’t feel the negative after effects and I’m over them. I have no intention of seeking out a new prescription.
I only seek to open minds. The severity of the implications of long-term use of anti-depressants must be discussed. I too resisted the information for a long time, but no more. I’m intent on exposing Big Pharma for the very dangerous entity that they are in this country.
In the past, we’ve allowed big pharma to successfully endanger multiple generations of humans on this planet with the use of Valium (highly addictive), then pushing anti-depressants (highly addictive), then they started pushing opiate-based pain medication (highly addictive).
Our rivers and streams are full of anti-depressants that get there through our sewer systems so that animals drink the water (humans drink the water out of our taps in our homes). The water transmits the anti-depressants to humans through animal meat as well as tap water. It is out of control.
I don’t claim to be a doctor. I am a survivor of decades of incorrect diagnosis by the medical community and their ‘recovery’ system that 97% of people who try are not able to stick with.
It is my opinion, and I will not back down from it, that the pharmaceutical companies (who we ALL KNOW pay just as much for their votes in our government as the NRA, Insurance or the Banking industries) are the biggest criminals around. No, this is not irresponsible. This is my story. And, I will tell it.
It’s been my observation that too often people have revered doctors as demi-gods who have the final word when they are in fact humans who make mistakes. This is an inherent danger in prescribing medicine – you don’t know the limit of your Doctor’s knowledge. That’s why smart people get second or third opinions.
The final word should come from a patient who has made themselves informed of all the facts rather than the word of one person in their life. It’s each individual’s responsibility to sort through the information and come to their own conclusion.
People need facts and opinions to make up their own mind about how they want to proceed rather than blindly following doctors being wined and dined by pharmaceutical reps.
I made my decision after almost 15 years of trying to sort through it. It wasn’t made overnight. Ignorance is not bliss. But, it can destroy lives. That’s why I write.
Background on Banner Photo by Henri Pham on Unsplash