My brain is currently broken. It’s broken most mornings, but as I’m waiting for the Abilify and the Buspar to work their magic, I thought I would write about psych meds and me.
Once upon a time, I didn’t believe in meds. Or rather, I did, kind of, but I didn’t think they helped. I thought they did the opposite—that they killed who you were inside. That’s if they worked at all.
The media told me this, and why would the media lie about something like that? Not just the media, but the books I read, and the shows I watched, and the comics (both web and offline) I read. Why would writers lie about something like that?
My friend with depression told me this; he would go on and then off the drugs, because off the drugs he claimed to be sharper, if more depressed. Because we both work in a place where you need to be very, very sharp or else you’re very, very fired, meds were scary to me.
But the thing about brain chemistry is that it doesn’t care if you think meds are scary. Trying to be strong in the face of bad chemistry doesn’t work. That all by itself is scary to think about.
One day, I lost it. You can read about That One Flashback.
The thing that took me the longest to understand was that what happened wasn’t an indication that I was evil or weak about my morals. It was… well… chemistry.
Doesn’t the fact that the chemistry can defeat me, doesn’t that mean I’m weak? Doesn’t the fact that chemistry can defeat me, doesn’t that mean I’ve given up all responsibility as a human being?
Doesn’t admitting to this fact mean that I’m evil and weak about morals?
What do you think the media says about this?
All I can conclude is that the media is scared about meds, too.
Years later, I still don’t believe in my own meds. Even though they work. Abilify, Lamictal (a lot of it), Buspar… they’ve all brought me back from the brink in one way or another, even when I didn’t believe that they ever would. They battle the bad chemistry in my head, and then I’m functional. It’s not perfect—I’m kind of coming to grips with the fact that it’ll never be perfect—but I can suddenly get out of bed in the mornings.
I don’t think the problem is that people are scared of meds in and of themselves. I think people are scared of the implications of meds; like, somehow, it would mean that some people that society says you should think of as evil or weak about their morals are suddenly not, and paradigm shifts like that? People really don’t like those.
This leads to strange things like people who accept that meds are effective, but don’t accept that brain chemistry can affect your judgement in the first place. Basically, they accept the effect but not the cause, and that’s even more problematic than not believing in meds in the first place.
Every morning I battle myself to take the meds. I wonder if I should lose one day, what society will judge me as.
Okay, now it’s time for breakfast and tea, because fuck, that was depressing.