Join Date: Jul 2004
Re: Does anyone just not take their meds?
You should not stop taking your meds abruptly without first consulting your physician/counselor. A lot of drugs have severe, even fatal withdrawal symptoms. You should slowly ween/taper off if you plan on no longer taking the drug in question.
I am by NO means qualified to give advice on what meds to take or not take, but I will tell you my opinion. As you read this, keep in mind that this is from my own research and you should not take it as medical advice.
First off, benzodiazepines (Alprazolam, aka Xanax, Diazepam, aka Valium, Lorazepam, aka Ativan, etc), SSRIs (such as Zoloft or Celexa), and almost all the other class of drugs - MAOIs, SNRIs etc - given for mental illness are pretty tough on the body and mind.
I have been very depressed for as long as I can remember. I was never a fan of going to a counsler for my depression or for medication. I did try Zoloft, Xanax, Valium and Remeron (not at the same time) and this is my take on them.
They really mess up your mind. The side effects are horrible, and they all eventually stop working. The withdrawal symptoms for some of these drugs are fatal, and are overall MUCH worse than even alcohol and tobacco.
Benzodiazepines really ruined my memory. While taking them I couldn't remember anything and now that I've been off of them for a few months my memory still hasn't gone back to baseline, and I don't even know if it ever will.
SSRIs and the other anti-depressants really do a toll on your brain's chemical balance and I would only recommend these drugs in severe cases of whatever mental illness you have.
The truth is that these drugs really only target the SYMPTOMS of the depression, and not the actual cause. I believe (this is my opinion, but flames/debates are welcome) that depression is more of an emotional/personality problem. Problem sounds harsh.. but what I mean to say is that depression is really just part of some people's personality.
Now, I'm not the type that says "IT'S ALL IN YOUR HEAD" because trust me, I've been suicidal and very depressed for a long time. I lost interest in everything I used to enjoy, stopped talking to friends/family, cried myself to sleep, etc..
Throughout the years, I did realize a few things. For one, through A LOT of concentration, I can control my depression somewhat. It's hard, almost making me want to take meds just to deal with it, but it's possible.
Meditation really helps. For me, I noticed that I was depressed and always regretting the past, worrying about the future, having no goals, etc. I noticed that most people don't care about these things.
I took my problems and analyzed them.. and realized that almost every single person has the same amount/degree of problems that I have, and billions of people have WAY worse problems than me.
I fear that most people who spend years on anti-depressants don't really know the damage these drugs are doing to their bodies.
Don't get me wrong.. Zoloft is a godsend, but these drugs should only be used as a LAST resort. If you have a busy life and have to deal with your depression ASAP, then fine. Give these drugs a try.. but I think most people should seek therapy and start changing things in their life.
Take a break.. relax, analyze your life. What makes you happy? What doesn't?
What goals did you have before? What goals do you have now, if any? What interests you?
Are you financially OK and will you be financially OK on your own for as long as you need to?
Are you hurting anyone with your actions/lifestyle?
Do you have any regrets?
Where do you see yourself 5 years from now? where do you WANT to see yourself? Where do you NOT want to see yourself?
Do you think Joe down the block is happy? Do you think Nancy in the next cubical is happy? Why? Why do people do the things they do?
Do you believe in God? Does it bother you if somebody believes in God or not? Why?
What happens when you die? Are you afraid of death? Why?
You DO realize that the general population is depressed to some degree, right?
How's your self esteem? No matter how bald, fat, big of a nose you have, or how hideous you think you look, you do realize that looks aren't everything, and you do realize that a nose job or a face lift will not improve anything, right?
Do you think you will be happy if you changed something about your body/face? Losing weight perhaps? Why do these things bother you? Why do you care what others think?
Do you accept loss (a death, financial loss, a lover, etc)? Do you accept missed chances? Do you accept bad luck? Do you believe in karma?
Why do you think good things happen to bad people?
Do you think you deserve more than you have?
Do you think everyone else judges you? Do you realize that almost everybody else is just as shy and nervous as you are, and are just as concerned about their image as you are?
What's the meaning of life? Why are we all alive?
Are you religious? If so, QUESTION it. Does it make you happy? If not, then why do you believe in it? Why do you listen to it? Why bother? Religion isn't for everyone, and if it's not making you happy, nobody is forcing you to follow it.
Do realize that the placebo effect is VERY strong, and the human brain is extremely powerful. Expectation and what you want DEEP DOWN play a big part in you actually getting treated or not.
You have to ask yourself if you really want help, and take drastic measures to repair whatever problem(s) you had in your life. The past is the past. I would say only maybe 1% of Earth's entire population DOES NOT regret their past, and almost everyone has made mistakes they will regret for the rest of your life.
Understand that you're alive. If so, that's more than enough of a reason to be happy.
One thing I read that really struck me was..
Somebody who wins the lotto, or becomes paralyzed from the neck down, goes back to the same level of happiness they felt, within 6 months, before those things happen.
Don't tell yourself "I would feel happy if I had THIS, or if I had THAT" (insert.. that dream girl/guy, money, etc in place of THIS or THAT)
I really want to open up more and have lots to say, but the things I have to say, I am not permitted to on this board. I hope at least somebody gets something useful out of my wacky rants.
I myself am a child and I'm not happy... I'm struggling and my problem(s) are not even that severe. I realize this and I'm trying my best to cope. I know it's hard.. and I'm a very sensitive guy.
Change takes a long time.. and I don't even see myself being happy in the near future. I am growing up and learning a lot.. and even though I can't help but feel depressed, lonely, angry or whatever, I AM glad to be alive, and have what I have. I feel so much regret and guilt.. and I will likely speak to a counselor about therapy.. because I believe writing or talking really helps.
So yeah, I guess I might sound like a hypocrite, but what I said is advice I have gathered from people/books/my personal thinking over the years. I'm very young and I'm still trying to decide in what direction I want my life to go.. and I'm trying to find out exactly what happiness means TO ME and how can I achieve it.
I believe that one should do some research online before ingesting these SSRIs and benzos. These drugs are from a doctor but are probably more damaging to the body than heroin and alcohol, and if that's the price you want to pay for a temporary happiness, so be it.
I think it would be more worthwhile to take a break and try to determine WHO you are, WHERE you're going and WHAT you want out of life. We're all going to die (great news huh?) someday, and life IS short.
There are many problems in the world.. always has and always will be. People can make a difference, and everyone has a voice. Do whatever makes you happy.. life sucks and nobody likes it, but it's something we're all forced - starting from birth - to deal with.
It's hard, but try to make the best of it. If anything, just sit down and think about your life. When/where exactly did it start going downhill? Change is possible no matter how old you are, and happiness can be attained no matter what condition you're in.. keep that in mind. It's never too late.
Last edited by joebloggs2; 12-12-2006 at 06:55 PM.