Is depression a big con?

Is depression a big con?
0

#41

I’ve suffered from depression and anxiety on and off since I was about 15/16 (probably earlier, but it was undiagnosed prior to that).

Similarly, I’ve been on and off meds since about that time.

Until very recently, I’d been off work for a number of months (partly) due to depression.

Depression ain’t a con (not suggesting the OP is saying that).

But, like many other things (if not more so), mental health issues more often than not do not have a ‘one size fits all’ treatment.

Over the past ten years I have been on numerous meds, and seen a huge number of mental health professionals from Counsellors, CBT Practionores, Mental Health Nurses, Psychotherapists, Psychiatrists and more.

What I have recently come to accept is that there is a good chance I will be on meds for the rest of my life. I HEAVILY resent the reaction this gets.

Why are you taking those? Isn’t it weird that you have to take those to feel _ normal? _

This attitude needs shooting into the sun. You wouldn’t say the same to some taking medication for a bad heart, you wouldn’t say it to a diabetic taking insuling and you wouldnt say it to an asthmatic using an inhaler.

Some people need medicine to get by, mental health, is not unlike anything else. Some people need it. Whilst I’m not accusing anyone on this thread of this, there does seem to be an attitude in society that those that need to take meds for their mental health are unstable, or that the entire thing is a con. I think this is extremely unhealthy.

I’m not for a minute saying meds are a silver bullet cure. But, as I can personally attest, they have their place. Discussions like this (i.e the podcast, not what @pap or anyone here is saying) are damaging, imo. It’s this sort of thing that permeates throughout society and makes sufferers of mental health issues ashamed of taking their meds, and exacerbates any existing problems.

I’ll be honest, I ain’t a huge fan of Joe Rogan. Not only for this, but a variety of other issues. But he’s far from alone on this. People such as Peter Hitchens have also made a huge deal of noise (and money, ofcourse) on the same issue. It’s hugley, massively damaging. These are people that have no understanding, no training, and no place to be making such comments on such issues. Whilst I don’t doubt they aren’t deliberatley trying to hurt people, I think their actions have the opposite affect to what they intended.

Long story short, as someone that has suffered from Depression and Anxiety for all my life. Do what works. If the meds help, take your meds. There is no shame in that. Ignore anyone (accept those properly trained and in a position to help you) that tells you otherwise.


#42

Saw this. Want to comment. Just toopjsssed.

Will revisit tomorrow


#43

Have to react to this post. (I keep waking up!).

That’s just an amazing and beautifully written post and really what I was trying to convey. Thanks Bletch.


#44

To be honest, when an otherwise erudite and articulate British person starts calling people ‘Dude’ it makes me a bit depressed. But that’s just me.


#45

It’s your wardrobe. HTH.


#46

Firstly to Bletch - wondeful post if I can call it that given the reasons for posting and huge respect for the honesty which you share.

I am particularly pleased that you rightly talk about the challenges faced by GPs who are stuck between a rock and a hard place. Firstly, mental illnesses are difficult to diagnose, and establishing whether a patient has a clinical depression or the beginnigs of other mental iIlness is not something GPs are qualified to do - its why referal is so critical, yet the provision of mental health services is ridiculously underfunded and underesourced - Given that 1 in 10 of us will suffer from some kind of mental illnes in our lifetime, it highlights just how little attention its been given… and its still something many dont understand… The average person on the street would I suspect still avoid a patient suffering form Schizophrenia, when the vast majority of thsoe patients are never a danger to anyone but themselves as their disease progresses and their families suffer the tradegy of ‘losing’ a living relative…

So GPs, need to find a way to provide some therapeutic option and as you suggest medication is better than nothing.

I would , however offer and alternative to the suggestion that there is always some event or ‘cause’ behind depression or other mental illness. For many there may well be an external trigger or usually a set of triggers, but for others there is often no specific trigger. Some conditions have heriditory risk factors etc. There is no hard and fast rule, which contributes to the complexities of diagnosis, treatment and prognosis.

When discussing treatment, I can’t talk about the impact of Therapy sessions as I am not qualified to do so, but I can offer a liitle clarity on the the big Parma drug pushing debate. To qualify this I have worked in the healthcare sector now for over 25 years. I have never worked directly for a manufacturer (big Pharmaceuticals), but within a global CRO (Clinical reserach organization) albeint more on the consulting side. In effect the company designs and runs global clinical studies on behalf of these manufacturers.

So whenever I see stories of conspiracy to push pills or the high cost etc, I do feel its maybe necessary to provide a more balanced perpsective. First up, the Pharma industry is like all industries, its never 100% squeaky clean… BUT because of extremely stricht regulatory conditions it is actually much cleaner than most. Its also true that they make money from ill people and if persons suffer from chronic conditions they do tend to make money throughout the time that patients needs treatment… what is not often highlighted is that the the ‘real’ money is in not drugs that just offer symptomatic effect, but in those that are disease modifying or curative - and its this that drives the research and development. TheR&D that means Mrs AG is alive today some 22 years after being diagnosed with a form of Leukaemia that only 10 years previously would have made this unlikely…

We see countless stories of 'cost of drugs being 1000’s when the cost of manufactiure is pence, yet these never tell you that it will have cost over 1bn to bring a drug to market… 5bn if you include the cost of those that did not make it and that the patent life post approval is usually only 10 years - a short time to make this back and a profit… if the patient population is also small, then you can see what drives the price.

But coming back to pushing medication for depression - well its actually one of the most strctly controlled areas. Manufacturers have much greater restritictions on how they promote and sell drugs for mental illnesses… because finding the right medication for a particular patient is not easy - all respond differently. It is often a process of trial and error. Add to that the ‘addictive’ nature of many of these drugs it becomes a difficult therapeutic challenge.

Depression is no con, a close family member suffers and for years was hooked on ativan, but managed to get off these some years ago… not an easy time.

At a time when mental illness is still not well understood and still suffers from stigma or worse, its ‘good’ to see such honest accounts such as yours as it all helps chip away at the misconceptions about depression and mental illness. Thanks.


#47

Wise words imo. I have been through exactly the same thing! You start off watching one or two Joe Rogan videos. Cuddly, reasonable Joe Rogan. Then youtube goes oh, if you like that, you might like this! And starts spamming you up with Gavin McInnes, Ben Shapiro, Jordan Pieterson, fkn Milo Yianoppolis, all that crowd. And you watch them videos t0o, and the problem is, in the war between Far Left SJW and Far Right Comedians, the Right seems to have most of the logic & humour on their side.

If you’re not careful, you can get red-pilled, and start thinking it’s ok to clickbait your subscribers with salacious video titles. IS THE HOLOCAUST A BIG CON??? Click inside to find out!!

It’s a dangerous world!


#48

They should teach you in school how to look after your mental health imo. I mean, it wouldn’t save everyone, if you’ve got the chemical imbalances that’s v.sad, but learning kids Meditation & Mindfulness & how to avoid Coping Disorders & Negative Self Image & whatever else, would save a lot of wasted, unhappy & non-productive lives imo.


#49

I don’t profess to know much at all about depression at all and can only comment from having seen family members who have been diagnosed as suffering from it and seeing the journey they have taken from acceptance through diagnosis and onto medication and support, it seems to me that medication is absolutely key in the battles they face.

All illness needs to be struggled with, coped with and either managed or defeated. Whether it’s a physical condition or a mental condition there are challenges and battles ahead. Sometimes it doesn’t work, sometimes it does, but everyone who has a challenge like this needs to have all the things that are available to them that may aid their recovery. Often these are restricted by financial constraints, but this is a separate argument.

Physical conditions can be seen and sympathised with. There is no doubting a broken leg, a liver malfunction or a cancer diagnosis. There are drugs, treatments and support networks of excellent, compassionate individuals available for recovery, but mental issues are different. You can’t see it, it can be hidden, it can be ignored and it can be mis-understood, but it always there. The brain is the most complex organ we have and is far and away the one bit of our being that is the least understood. Science has given us the ability to synthesize chemicals which help some of us cope with problems in it, so i see no problem in their provision.

I agree with Bletch with regard to over prescription. Personally, i’d hate to be a GP trying to assess the complex needs of an individual in a 5 or 10 minute time slot, least of all trying to assess their mental well being. I can entirely understand the prescription of medications as a way of providing a proven coping mechanism which , hopefully, would assist them in some way.


#50

I’m reading this on an iPad so I can’t be bothered to type a long diatribe right now, but the bottom line is I think a load of so called “experts” just talk bollocks.

I was diagnosed with depression about 30 years ago and went on medication. In my opinion it both saved and ruined my life at that time. The medication left me with no moral compass and I basically turned into a sexaholic, so I guess it wasn’t all bad but it was a major factor in a lot of dodgy life decisions, and I also believe the medication was a major factor in me developing type 2 diabetes due the weight I put on.

I had a great life at that point and no “valid” reason to be depressed.

Looking back, I had depressive tendencies even as a young child 50 years ago… but nobody noticed. Looking at other members of my family I am convinced they had milder versions of it but it was never recognised.

Apparently the latest thinking is that my type of depression is “fake”. I researched it, took action, and since then I have survived 15 years without medication, only suffering very mild episodes which I have managed without people really knowing.

Maybe it’s just all in my head…


#51

I can speak with some authority on the subject as someone who has suffered from it on and off over the years. My mother did too. It sucks. Big time. At our lowest points we both attempted to end our lives, it was that bad. I spent several months with The Priory in 2003 and it was a great help. I was on drugs for the simple reason that they help stabilise your condition, but they do not cure it. You need a lot of therapy. I did cognative therapy and although it takes time, it was a massive help. It did turn things round but I dont believe you are ever really cured, you are just given the tools to deal with down turns better. I have a really good GP and when I find I am struggling again we will talk about whether I feel I need meds again or not, but he is against them unless I feel I cant cope and so I am. He certainly doesnt push them. Anything that gives people a crutch when they feel they cant handle their life anymore has to be a good thing. Sadly I have known several people who couldnt cope and were successful in their suicide attempts. I also made friends with people with the same problems whilst in The Priory and they have come through the other side and are leading productive lives again. Dont let anyone tell you that there is no such thing as depression. It is an awful condition and I wouldnt wish it on anybody. People I knew, when I told them I was being treated for it, couldnt believe it. I was treated as a “smiling depressive” because I always joked about things and laughed them off. Clearly, underneath, I wasnt dealing with things at all well and after a while, the wheels come off completely. Depressive people are not weak, they are too stromg for their own good and keep going when most people would stop and take stock, that is why they need extra assistance. Things go to far and it takes longer to ger them back on track. That is why it bothers me when I read Barry’s rants or the meltdowns on Fiverweb. It is one thing to have a quick rant and get the frustrations off of your chest, but when this stuff is prolonged and repeatative, you have to wonder if these people have underlying problems in their lives. Yes, the pharmas make a ton of money out of people’s ailments, but these meds do also help people who struggle with things that they believe are beyond their control. My wife has been on meds for a number of years thanks to the pressure of working for a government agency, and they really helped her cope with her stress levels. Fortunately, she realised that that level of stress is not healthy on a daily, weekly and monthly basis so she got out, but she is still on them now because, when she tries to come off them, the residue of the emotional battering she took is still there. She could do with therapy but is fighting it at the moment as she feels that would be accepting that she still has issues. Doh!


#52

I wrote and posted before I had read most of the thread so hats off to those like me who have been through the wringer and are happy to talk about it. When I was first prescibed meds the GP said, dont worry, half the country are on them! He is right. We tend to think we are alone or in the minority but truth is many many people are struggling with life. I can confirm what AG says about pharma companies too. Mr brother has worked in the industry all his life, starting off with Wellcome, and it costs an absolute fortune to develop drugs. Without that continued revenue stream we will not, eventually, beat cancers and the like.


#53

The reason I spend so much time on the internet is that I stopped working 4 years ago at the age of 40. I was signed off work at the CPS for a year before agreeing to take voluntary redundancy package as I couldnt face going back. I hit a wall at the time my mother passed away. Fortunately having been through it all before, I knew the signs and knew what kind of help to seek. I agreed to try some meds after about 6 months as the therapy didnt seem to help (privately I got all the help I needed when I could afford it as the insurance covered it. Now I dont have medical insurance so have to go NHS and the mental health side support wise here isnt as good unless you are suicidal). The meds helped to stabilise me but I only agreed to a short course because I knew what my anxiety triggers were and that I needed to work through them with coping mechanisms that didnt involve chemicals. I am now 64 and have just started to feel that I can face going back to work. I have done some short term work for cash. I have made six boats with local friends. I have gone for long walks. I finally feel that I can put myself in the stress firing line again and get back to the 9 to 5. It could go horribly wrong but at least I am now applying for jobs and have updated my CV. It is a start. I tip my hat to all those who get up every morning knowing they have a mountain to climb. At least we are moving past the point where it is acceptable just to say “pull yourself togther.”


#54

Fucking hell - no recollection of posting this.

Want to comment. Too hungover. Will try again later


#55

Support advice for those prone to depression and anxiety.

Probably not the best idea to support a football club liable to ever end up in a relegation battle.


#56

I think trigger is a much better term, @areloa-grandee .

And I’d accept your qualification about there often appearing to be no trigger for some - especially in relapses.

In my experience with depression (personal and of others), the trigger might have been so long ago and the sufferer has buried it so deeply that they may not actually recognise the trigger as the issue even if confronted with it by a professional.


#57

Namaste, @bearsy .

Folded Hands on Apple iOS 11.2

You are so right about this.

But what would happen when the mindful, humble, self-aware and kind youth army joins the workforce where they are trained to rip the flesh from the bones of anyone that gets in their or their company’s way?

Dumb bear.


#58

Great post.

I’d add to this that if you’ve broken your leg, it’s clear to you that you need to get treatment and when you arrive for that treatment it’s clear to the medical professional what needs to be done.

At no point in your decision-making process do you think you’ll just be told to get a grip.

At no point in your thought process do you feel like a failure for breaking your leg.

At no point do you feel weak or weaker than those around you.

At no point does your ego kick in and tell you that you’re better than this and you can live with the damaged limb.

Depression is just like every other illness until you start to think about getting treatment and then it becomes like no other illness.


#59

This is a well-known side effect of many medications and I’ve experienced it too.

It’s amazing for a while but when you see yourself acting out a situation and you start to realise that you aren’t actively involved in the decision process and you’re effectively watching someone who looks like you but doesn’t behave like you (used to) do, it is quite unsettling.

And anyway those 36 months in prison flew by…


#60

Classic multiple personality disorder.