There’s a pharmaceutical solution for every problem. But not every problem needs a pharmaceutical solution.
What’s wrong with being a little crazy? Pills are a quick fix. Our fast-paced society doesn’t value or support the kind of deep work that’s necessary to help people navigate through turbulent waters. It’s more convenient to give a prescription. There are huge multi-national drug companies behind these solutions.
I can see where it’s difficult for a doctor to know what the best course of action should be, and isn’t it better to be safe than sorry? Mental illness exists and such drugs can be life-saving. Antidepressants are helpful and good for some people.
Depression is nothing to be ashamed of. It’s the waiting list for support that people can’t access or afford that’s shameful. It’s the stigma around it that’s shameful. The prevalence of antidepressants in our society is concerning and the side effects have alarming statistics. I think pills should be the last option and not the only option.
We need new mental health models that can deliver services to people today who are really struggling. Give doctors more options and more ideas to tackle the problem of mental health. The mental health community has a history of talking and not acting. We need more youth-friendly, stigma-free walk-in centres. It would be really helpful to have public or private groups that people can go to and talk about what’s been going on in a structured, non-judgemental environment.
Taking pills is not a failure and people need to understand that. If you need the pill to clear your head, by all means, take the pill. What makes me really sad is the number of kids convinced there’s something wrong with them. I think it’s a slippery slope. I’ve seen in my own family where a learned helplessness becomes a way of life.
We need to be told that we can do hard things. Heartbreak, loss, fear, anxiety and pressure are painful and difficult feelings but aren’t necessarily mental illness. We need to be told that feelings are messy and messy is okay.
Let’s stop comparing our daily life on social media with other people’s highlight reels. I think the world would be a happier place if there were less pills, less stigma around pills, and more people to step up and become heroes in their own stories. We should ask ourselves are we the people we want to be right now and be okay with whatever comes up.
Mental illness isn’t a choice, but recovery is. Let’s not let a billion dollar industry tell us any different.
This was first published in the March issue of Hometown News