Sunday, November 17, 2019

Comments by Debbie_M

Showing 3 of 3 comments.

  • In response to oldhead. I appreciate your comments and thoughts about not talking to medical provider. However, I do think with the severity of the side effects of coming off Zoloft, I don’t think it’s wise NOT to seek help from a medical provider. The side effects I’ve experienced are so severe, I need new prescriptions at a lower does for example (from 50 mg to 25 mg), which I can’t do without prescribing doctor. I believe some providers can provide support and guidance when we the patient, communicate our beliefs and intentions.

  • I agree with Ray’s comment that changing (and even challenging) the existing narrative on mental illness is a challenge, a significant one. To challenge the idea that mental illness is not really a disease; a result of ‘faulty brain wiring’ or a chemical imbalance goes against the marketing of Psychiatric Associations, the Medical community and most importantly pharmaceutical companies. Millions of dollars over the last few decades have been invested in messages to the public about ‘broken brains’, and diseases of the mind, of which the only cure for the most part is medicine. This narrative is deeply embedded in North American society’s belief system.

    For these reasons I’m not optimistic about the views on depression, schizophrenia and manic episodes changing anytime soon. Changing the narrative will require a concerted effort with a cohesive, consistent message that can be communicated across multiple media channels. This will require funds (a lot!), as well as a disciplined, strategic approach to spread a consistent, concise message.

    However all is not lost. I do think individuals like us, can help change the narrative that will reach a least a sliver of the population with personal stories via blogs, books, videos documentaries etc. Though the reach will be a drop in the bucket compared to the pharmaceutical companies.

    There are other ways I think we can achieve change: talking to our medical providers for one and stating why we don’t want medication for treating depression and anxiety, speaking to our families including educating our children, and joining forces with organizations promoting change, as with Mad in America. I finally stumbled across Mad In America (thankfully) after trying to get off Zoloft. I had no idea why my depression was not getting better and began worsening, even after being on a cocktail of Wellbutrin and Zoloft. Only after trying to get off Zoloft and experiencing the horrendous side effects is when I turned to researching and found Mad In America. Thankfully I have found this organization! It all makes so much sense after reading Whitaker’s books, ‘Mad in America’, and ‘Anatomy of an Epidemic’.

    Thanks Tabita for your thoughtful article.