Medicating Myself

 

I wasn’t always on edge. There was a point in my life where I was as carefree as one could be. The future never concerned me. Worry wasn’t such an obstacle. It wasn’t until I got closer to 25 years old that I felt an emotional shift. The first thing I did was reach out to a therapist. The second thing I did was get a prescription filled.

There is still such controversy around taking medication for mental health. People still feel the need to keep it hidden. It should be considered the “last resort.” For me, medication was, and still is, a lifesaver. I have Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Depression. Without medication, I am not myself. For me, in order to be the best I can be, I need to be on medication. 

I am in no way ashamed in telling someone “I take Prozac.” Why should I be? Why is there stigma around reaching out for help and getting it? There is no amount of yoga or meditation that will take away the amount of anxiety that I have on a daily basis. I have recently gone back on my medication after a yearlong “break.” I thought I would get off of it because I was feeling better and thought I didn’t need it. 

It was because of the medication that I was feeling better. So I went back on it. I am more clear-headed, happier and more positive now that I am on it. I have heard so many alternatives to taking medication from people through the years. I should try oils, certain self-help books, go to the gym, quit my job, eat better, relax more, etc. etc. etc. While all of those ideas do help in some way, they are not a cure for mental illness. “Just being positive” isn’t going to stop the obsessive and intrusive thoughts. I was sad and wanted to be happy again. I needed more help.

I have been on four different types of SSRI’s (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) through the years. Some were good, and some made me feel like I was losing my mind. Some helped to a degree. It took me trying a few to find what really worked for me. When you do, everything clicks. Life is easier to handle. Parenting doesn’t seem so tough. Work isn’t as daunting. You begin to take better care of yourself. 

You being to feel like the old YOU. 

The stigma surrounding medication for anxiety and depression needs to end. We all are doing the best that we can with what we have. Therapy and medication has made me a better wife and mother. It has helped me become a better me. There is nothing wrong in asking for help. I believe there is so much strength in reaching out. If you feel like you are going through the motions of everyday life and there is no end in sight, reach out to someone. Asking for help is nothing to be ashamed of. 

I made the best decision for myself and my family when I decided to get my prescription filled for the first time. It was the first step that I needed to begin the process of taking care of me.

 

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One Response to Medicating Myself

  1. Laura July 2, 2017 at 12:41 pm #

    Thank you for speaking this truth! We must work hard to destigmatize receiving treatment for mental health issues, which are as biological as diabetes or hypertension. The more we talk about it, the better. Thank you!

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