I wasn’t a fan of taking medications for mental illness. I thought it was something not good but thinking about it, why do we find it okay if someone with Parkinson’s disease continuously take medication but not the other way round?
It all comes down to what the public thinks mental illness is. They assume mental illness equals crazy people. It’s not.
The thing is, antidepressants increase serotonin levels, a neurotransmitter that is lacking from people with depression. There are two classes of antidepressants known as selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors antidepressants (SSRIs) and serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs). When you think about it, it’s almost like taking supplements for Vitamin B or Omega-3.
There’s just a catch. Every antidepressants are not suitable for everyone so it might take time to find the right one for you. There are side effects also but it’s usually very mild.
The one I’m taking, is called Brintellix. I take one before I sleep every night. During my first week, I did experience butterflies in my stomach, and at one point, nausea, whereby I did puke once after eating lunch. Right now, it has been about 2 weeks plus and I still get a funny feeling in my stomach (not every day, just some days), probably just nausea or butterflies but it is just very mild. How do I feel? Well, I haven’t broken down for 6 days, which is great. It feels like I have finally manage to put aside my weak side. But then, I feel like I’m ignoring my weak side, telling myself that I’m okay, making me feel tired at the end of the day. I try not to think about it, which helps me to keep on moving. Just stop thinking about my depression and the things that bother me.
I think most people have misconceptions. When a person takes antidepressants, it doesn’t mean that the world suddenly turn into rainbows and unicorns. It doesn’t work that way. It takes about 2-3 weeks for the effect to be felt but it’s not rainbows and unicorns. It helps a person to feel better and quite normal, which is above being depressed. It may also help in better focus as focus is something depression tend to affect.
So yes, I just hope I can keep it up although there’s this day that I am dreading so much because I know how much it is going to affect me.
So anyways, basically, if counselling isn’t much help, maybe you can try antidepressants. It isn’t something to be seen as scary or inappropriate. I do believe a combination of both medication and counselling might actually work even better.
It’s still your decision to make.