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The Drugs Do Work

I came across the article In Defense of Happy Pills recently on the subject of SSRIs i.e. antidepressants such as Zoloft and Prozac. It’s a subject close to my heart as for many years I struggled over the choice of talk therapy versus drugs (or both.) My own inherited attitudes about the nature of depression and suffering prevented me from getting the help I needed for too long.

The crux of the article is very insightful about the nature of these drugs and people’s ambivalence towards them. I think this quote sums the matter up well (and in favor of the drug therapy):

But why should someone who suffered trauma have to suffer more to overcome it, if there’s a less difficult, equally safe, and effective alternative? Why shouldn’t the shy be on a level playing field with the naturally outgoing if that is what they want? Why is it easier for us to let go of the idea that physical suffering is a message from God that we should bear in order to temper our souls than it is to shake the idea that emotional pain must be endured for our own good?

This is the point, those enduring the pain and suffering of depression want it to stop right now, today. We will do anything to stop it, including suicide. Talk therapy simply takes too damned long. If you find yourself taking these drugs (and indeed having your life restored to you in the process) understand that while your friends, family, or society may not understand, but some fellow depressives out there certainly do.

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