Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Suspended in Air

This is another guest post by Dorothy Donald.

I was twelve years old. Dr B said she didn’t like to prescribe antidepressants for someone so young, but I was such a classic case that she felt she had to. My mother kept my meds in a high cupboard so that I couldn’t… you know. I didn’t get better.
I was a teenager. It made me feel like I was looking at the world from the bottom of a swimming pool. I did things without deciding to do them. I had never harmed myself before…
Early 20s. I just didn’t think it was helping. I thought I was just getting worse. I wanted to know if there was an alternative. Dr R wrote ‘patient refused to continue treatment’ on my medical notes and dismissed me from his office.
I didn’t want another SSRI. I remember citing some meta-analysis or another on the success rate of SSRIs. I remember saying that I’d tried them before. I remember saying I was not in the least convinced that they would do me any good. Dr S gently asked if maybe doing something that might work was preferable to doing nothing. What did I have to lose, from where I was?
I agreed to give the damn pills a try. I agreed to stick out the first few weeks of dizziness, nausea, acid reflux, and general big weird feelings. I even agreed to up my dosage last summer when I had ‘a bit of a wobble’. Since then I’ve been different.
I still get low mood, but it kicks around for a day or so, rather than weeks or months.
I still have times when I struggle to get out of bed, but the thought process goes “oh, I need more sleep” rather than “I am useless”.
I still think about offing myself, but it’s a thought that drifts into my head and then just drifts right out again, rather than some abominable earworm.
I’m not happy all the time – that would be odd. I get grumpy, furious, sad, excited, tired, TIRED, lost in the flow state, bored, amused, content… all the stuff.
I just looked through my diary for 2017. It shows a bereavement, a house move, a couple of other fairly serious upheavals, and only one thing that felt like a depressive episode. Which seems to have lasted only three or four weeks. I think this is pretty good going, considering.
It would be premature to conclude anything about the efficacy of these tablets (my memory is not infallible and I’m not good enough a girl to keep a really comprehensive diary). It would be unwise to draw comparisons with the other drugs (oh, the confounding variables!).

18 months and counting.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comment policy:
We reserve the right to edit all comments. In particular, we will not tolerate phobic content (race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, nationality, religion, mental health status, etc.) nor personal attacks or threats toward another commenter, significantly off-topic, or is an obvious trolling attempt.