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Why you should get off antidepressants

It feels like everyone these days is taking some sort of anti-depressant medication. It’s easy to understand, by most measurements we’re lonelier and more stressed out than we’ve ever been.

As difficult as it is, I think a lot of people would be better off without them. 

I cycled through a half dozen different medications until we eventually found one that “worked”. And it did work, in a sense. I was more stable, able to work a little more, and didn’t suffer as many prolonged periods of depression, at least initially. 

I ended up being on the same meds for almost ten years, with the dosage creeping up over time. And although I felt “better”, there was a problem- my life was an absolute garbage fire, and I seemed completely fine with it. And that’s the fundamental problem with these drugs, or at least taking them long term. They essentially numb you to whatever your situation is, which can be very dangerous. 

Some people have suffered intense trauma, and for them these types of drugs make sense from the perspective of pure survival. And some have mental health issues that are so profound that again, these drugs can be a lifesaver.

But you have to be very careful about putting yourself in one of these categories, and deciding that taking this stuff is going to be a way of life.

The story of why and how I ended up getting off them is long and for another time, but I did, and I eventually discovered there was nothing wrong with me.

In terms of mental health issues, over the years I had been variably diagnosed with major depressive, general anxiety, and anti-social personality disorder(s). That’s a lot of “disorders”. My trauma resume included all sorts of crazy shit from childhood and my teenage years. I ticked every box for someone who could justify using anti-depressants.

But once I got through the hellish withdrawal symptoms, and had been off them for a while and gained some perspective, I had the panic inducing realization that I had been sleepwalking for years.

I could have dealt with the issues I was facing in my twenties, instead of having to start life from scratch at 31 years old.

There’s a reason you’re angry, depressed, or anxious. Your “soul” is telling you something is wrong. You need to listen, and do something about it. On anti-depressants, you’re deaf.

What is wrong, and how to deal with it vary, but you need to feel everything and embark on a relentless pursuit of the solutions you need (pro tip- it’s not money). In another blog I’ll talk about some of the solutions that worked for me.

As you can guess, cannabis is one. Why I like it, is that opposed to the numbing qualities of anti-depressants, it brings about greater introspection and causes one to look in the mirror and think about things they may not have otherwise. I suspect the sudden introspection brought on by cannabis use is why many people “hate” it and avoid it, despite being willing to ingest alcohol and all sorts of other drugs. They’ve been pushing stuff down without realizing it their entire lives, hate anything that brings it to the surface.

Anyways, be absolutely sure about getting into this stuff. As difficult as it is, you’re probably better off without it. I know I am.

-GC

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