In November, I put up blog entry titled The Repercussions of Going on Antidepressants, and I received a comment on this post the other day that both disturbed me and confirmed what I already knew. I thought it merited its own discussion here.
The woman who wrote the comment calls herself NoRx4Me and left the following information:
I was put on an SSRI at 24 years old during a bad marriage. I needed guidance and support, instead I was told my brain was broken.
SSRI’s led to stimulants, mood stabilizers, SNRI’s, and lithium for a short time. I was a mess. I lost 13 years. I have little memory of those years (especially sad, because I was raising two boys). I didn’t grow as a person at all. I quit dating in 2003 and never developed knew friendships either. I didn’t even realize this was odd until I was off meds.
I probably would have responded like some others on here while I was still under the influence and told you the meds were great. With a clear mind and 20/20 hindsight, I know the facts, my life was destroyed.
And they do cause physical problems; I lost a ton of hair, and my teeth are a mess. I look like I’ve aged 20 years instead of 10.
You probably now understand why I was so bothered by what I read. This woman’s life was ruined, and the fact that she was raising two boys at the time makes it even more troublesome.
I had another reaction to this as well.
While there were only four people who left a comment (myself included) and this is by no means an adequate sample size, the feedback paints an interesting picture.
The people who seemed the most sympathetic to meds were: (1) the man who has been on meds for 4 months; and (2) a woman who is bipolar (she has her own bipolar blog). I don’t know if she is on antidepressants or not but my guess is that she is on some type of medication. I cannot say for sure, however.
The two people adamantly against meds were me and this woman above, NoRx4Me. The common thread that we both have is that we each were on medication for a long time, more than a decade, and both realized how harmful the medication was after we went off the drugs– not when we were on the drugs but after.
In today’s world, we live in a drug culture and doctors are giving out antidepressants as if they were candy. This is absolutely irrefutable — roughly 33 million people or more than 10% of our population take them.
And, a very high percentage of these doctors have no interest whatsoever of taking their patients off of medication because it means that they will no longer have them as paying clients. Additionally, the drugs do improve a person’s mood in the beginning, which lessens the incentive even further for a doctor to take a person off of the medication.
This leads to people being on medication for decades, and long-term usage is where the real carnage takes place.
People tell me all of the time “antidepressants help a lot of individuals” and they expect me to become very sympathetic towards these drugs. I’m sorry, I’m just not.
I say “Find me some people who have been on antidepressants for many years, have gone off of the medication and still think the drug is wonderful.”
The tragic story of NoRx4Me was just more confirmation of what I already knew.
Long-term antidepressant usage wreaks havoc on a person’s life but it is only after someone goes off of them can you get a clear picture of the true damage.