As I wrote about the other day, it was during college when I went on antidepressants. Each day was getting harder than the next. The sky was growing darker and darker. It was a major struggle just to survive.
I was overwhelmed with a variety of responsibilities — school work, in which I seemed to be drowning; the tennis team, which occupied several hours of my time per day, not including constant traveling to other schools for matches and tournaments; and my fraternity, something in which I was very actively involved.
With my voice becoming more heavy during each phone conversation, my parents suggested that I go visit a local psychiatrist to see if he could help. More specifically, they thought that antidepressants were the answer. After a brief chat with the doctor, he diagnosed me with a mild case of depression and believed that Prozac would indeed improve my situation.
At first, I was very reluctant to go on Prozac. I thought it was only for people who were really “screwed up.” My parents reassured me that this was not the case. They presented two counter-arguments.
First, they said it was not for people who were screwed up. It was for people who lacked something physiologically, which prevented them from being happy. It was just simply how these individuals (myself included) were born. Second, they told me about a family friend’s daughter who went on the drug and experienced great results with it.
My parents had tremendous influence over everything that I did when I was younger, and in this case it was no different. Furthermore, I didn’t like making decisions so I basically went along with everything they presented to me. It was just easier that way.
Also, I had yet to develop emotionally where I had strong opinions of my own. I didn’t know who I was, what I stood for and what I valued. That contributed to my very impressionable nature.
It only took a few days but I had been convinced – Prozac was the answer to my problems.
Taking the plunge into antidepressants during college had tremendous and disastrous repercussions, none of which I understood at the time.
On Friday, I’ll get into what those repercussions were.