They simply don’t work for me.

Anti-depressants are drugs, and while certain drugs obviously have their proper place in medicine, the use of drugs for mood repair is a difficult stretch to cover. I took a few just because I got sick of the issues that drive people to take them, and I found much the same effect as one would find when attempting to drown out their sorrows with a bottle of liquor: when the effect has worn off, the emotional pain is still there.

I watched a documentary on the use of anti-depressants, and one man who claimed they were working for him, a clearly wealthy but silky type, had a set of eyes that pointed in different directions, and his jaw was gyrating back and forth as though he hadn’t seen a sober day in a multitude of months. The camera followed him around his luxury home, and I had to ponder the nature of the effect of money: all that stuff, all those pricey doctors issuing the pricey medications.

I’ve heard of the great meditationists who find the answer to happiness by training the mind. My depression lies at the heart of the things I’d like to have, the things I’d like to do, the things I can’t do, and the things I’ve always wanted to do. This conglomeration of expectations extends from the life-stage concept where each human being achieves a certain amount of accomplishments at each stage. The great meditationists, however, will find happiness on a bare wooden floor with four walls at any stage of life regardless of the circumstances that have or will occur. Ha. Ha. Ha. So who’s getting the last laugh now?

So I’m back to square one with a trip through the valley of the shadow lingering until I get going on some other things. What I’m finding is that connecting with others is a big help, and this acts as a balancing weight to the other factors I’m simply not able to contend with. The balance is tough seeming how the negative influences somehow always have to weigh so much damn heavier, but I’m becoming firmly of the type, now that I’ve experienced the failure of happy meds, who is just going to have to face whatever emotion, no matter how bludgeoning the intensity, head on.

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2 Responses to Anti-Depressants

  1. woowooteacup says:

    Here’s a thought that was helpful to me. I think it is from Buddhism. It’s something along the lines of … “The way of a householder is a tough one.”

    The point this statement makes is that it is easy to divorce yourself from the world and sit in a room with a bare floor and four walls – no responsibility to anyone but yourself. You can work on your spirituality all you want and meditate all you like and be alone with your thoughts, and reach enlightenment.

    For the householder (i.e. anyone living in the real world), the expectation to reach enlightenment is still there, but you’ve got to get there while simultaneously meeting your life’s responsibility. Not so easy when a professor expects you to hand in a paper by a certain date, or you have a sick child to care for, or a job to show up for.

    I have a bit of a mental trick for when I’m feeling really down. I stop myself (mentally & physically) and I concentrate on whatever thoughts are causing me to be down. I look straight at them and examine them, telling myself that I only get to observe them, no action allowed. Eventually I see that those thoughts will not stay put and I literally cannot continue to hold them in my mind. They shift to something else. If they come back, I keep observing them directly, and once again, they leave.

    After doing this a few times, it’s easy to understand how transitory our thoughts and moods are. They simply don’t last – not even the bad stuff.

  2. LK says:

    Right, the householder doesn’t have the advantage of waking in a monastery everyday, so I can see what you’re getting at.

    I like how you’re able to identify emotions from a second perspective, stepping outside of yourself even. I’m getting closer and closer to not acting on my emotions, though in the past when I did what you do (I’ll admit it!), I took on the specter of dividing my personalities.

    But you’re correct Mary, it really is a mind over matter issue, especially when all other health issues like bad nutrition and habits are eliminated.

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