Antidepressant Talk Brings Early 4th of July
by: Phil Holleman
I was having dinner last Friday night with my cousin, Diane, when she brought up our friend “Bubba,” who committed suicide in April.
Diane told me that Bubba had started taking an antidepressant before he committed suicide. Interesting though, was the fact that he took his girlfriend’s antidepressant. Not HIS, his girlfriend’s.
My head turned into a Fourth of July fireworks display. Thoughts were flying all over the place, like they were trying to see which one was going to be the next to explode. Then, I almost started crying in the restaurant.
The first thing out of my mouth was he never should have taken the antidepressant without a prescription. Obviously, a person should never take any prescription medication for which he or she doesn’t have a prescription. But my God, definitely not an antidepressant. Diane wondered whether they may have caused suicidal thoughts. Hmm, that is a possible side effect.
I got onto my soapbox about whether someone should take an antidepressant in the first place. Diane told me for about the fifth time, or maybe the fiftieth, how Prozac (fluoxetine) helped her through a difficult period in her life. She’s still taking it. I put on my “doctor’s hat” and started my spiel.
Did the antidepressant really help or did she will her body to feel better because she wanted to feel better? What would have happened if the doctor had given her a sugar pill and told her it was an antidepressant?
I remember when I was prescribed an antidepressant. I was terrified. I researched them and found all of the possible side effects. The list was longer than the benefits. I didn’t get better, I think I got worse. I’m reminded of something Dani Johnson tells us at First Steps To Success about antidepressant commercials.
As the commercial opens, the man or woman is obviously suffering from depression. He or she looks hopeless, and the voice-over describes the pain. Jump to the next scene after the man or woman is on the antidepressant. He or she is frolicking on the beach or the in the countryside. Meanwhile, the voice-over is listing all of the possible side effects of the drug. If you pay attention, it typically takes longer to list the side effects than the benefits.
Dani’s point is that antidepressants may not be the answer, as well as being dangerous. I agree. Once I quit my antidepressant, cold turkey, I might add, and replaced them with omega-3 supplements, my physical life changed completely. I don’t know if omega-3 supplements will work for you. All I know is they helped cure my depression. I did continue my talk therapy for a while after I started on the supplements. Everyone should have therapy!
I will never tell anyone to stop taking his or her antidepressant. I do tell people to look at the options available. Our bodies are built to take in healthy foods and nutrients. However, the 21st century diet doesn’t have what our bodies need. I believe this diet issue can contribute to depression.
One final point. If you feel you are in trouble, get help. GET HELP. Ask for help. I probably sound like a broken record, but so be it. I firmly believe I am alive today because I asked for help. Some of the help came from the outside, but a lot came from the inside. I realized I had work to do, and only I could do it.
Yours in good health,
What Did You Think?
Let me know your thoughts on today’s article.
Post your comments below.
Remember – share the knowledge…