Depression – to medicate or to not medicate, that is the question…
Feeling like you have lost control of your life? You’re feeling hopeless, stuck, overwhelmed, or paralyzed? For many this is the definition of depression and I do not dismiss it for a minute. These are very real feelings and have the capability to cause very real situations in your life.
- Problems sleeping?
- No appetite?
- Lack of energy?
- Inability to find joy in the things you used to feel joy with?
Oftentimes people come to my office with the first list of symptoms and questioning whether they should be placed on medication to cope with their emotions. However, once I get to the second list of symptoms they slowly discover they are in need of help, but a medication might not be what they need. There is a sense of relief they are not clinically depressed, but still frustrated about how to handle their emotions and get out of their rut.
At this point I may recommend medication temporarily for some clients, some of whom may choose not to do so, but either way we start delving together into what events and situations in their lives are triggering these emotions. Once the roots of these depressive-like emotions are found, tools and changes are suggested and processed to help develop a more balanced and fulfilling lifestyle.
For example, a working woman comes into my office looking for medication, convinced she is clinically depressed. We start on the bulleted list above they slowly begin to realize a diagnosis of clinical depression does not fit her. After a few sessions (sometimes as little as one) we start uncovering their competitive spirit and the profound effect it has on her work habits. Granted, she is a superstar at work, climbing the ladder and being someone everyone counts on. But then something happens – maybe she gets married, maybe she has children, maybe she has a new health issue. Over time she pays the price of the war within herself; she fights harder on both fronts and then notice she is suffering – as well as their work, home, and relationships. This inner conflict leads to their depressive feelings of hopelessness, being overwhelmed, or just feeling stuck. We find the root of this competitive nature and start helping you to develop the necessary tools and awareness to allow you to determine what is really important in your life – ultimately finding their balance and end to your depression.
If this makes sense to you or you feel you are fighting depression, come see me. It doesn’t have to be a permanent way of life.