Are you listening?
A Case of the Crazies
Depression, the ten-letter-word we rarely hear except in relation to whichever shiny new pill PhRMA is pushing. In fact, many of those suffering from it don’t talk about it, they talk about what they take for it instead. It’s almost as if depression is really a four-letter-word we whisper about or apologize for and antidepressant use is the disclaimer that allows us to utter the word out loud.
Why is that? Why isn’t a real conversation being had across the country? Why is admitting we are depressed akin to admitting we are insane? Why do we seek social acceptance of our sadness by comparing prescriptions and their side-effects instead of acknowledging why we are depressed?
Is the treatment more important than the cause?
Antidepressants are the most common prescription medication taken by Americans age 18-44, and the third most common drug for all ages. From 1988–1994 through 2005–2008, the rate of antidepressant use in the United States among all ages increased nearly 400 percent! The antidepressant Abilify is the second biggest revenue generating drug in America.
The CDC reports that one out of ten of us are depressed and in their very first sentence of the statistical data they tell us that,
“depression is a mental illness“.
A mental illness? Really? Did it ever occur to the CDC and their actuaries that maybe we simply have a lot of negative things bombarding us at every turn and that the result is we feel like shit?
The Shit List
Um hello? Let me accurately define that list, although “Duh” is just as appropriate:
Of Money and Madness
Is it possible that a real living wage and health care could change the world? Don’t we know that acknowledgement of life’s problems isn’t denial and that a real conversation is not a placebo, but instead a positive course of action (which believe me would go a long fucking way in helping us change our tune)? Of course we know this, but governments, big PhRMA, and corporations cannot afford for us to be healthy and happy. They make too much money keeping us sick and depressed.
There’s a Pill For That
If we’re sad, stressed-out, or worried, we’re suffering from “depression”…
If we’re excited, we’re suffering from “mania”…
If we’re confused or overwhelmed, we’re suffering from “anxiety”…
You can take the magic poison pill your doctor prescribes for these things or you can remind yourself that the cost of pharmaceuticals over the course of a year could pay for a couple of fun weekend getaways, a day at a spa, or a number of other feel-good mood-boosting experiences. It could also put more food on the table, pay down that credit card, and fill up the gas tank which could help decrease your daily stress level.
But, They Help Us “Cope”
I say we need more coping skills not coping pills!
The next time you are feeling down, go in the bathroom, look at your image in a mirror and tell yourself,
“I’m sad, I’m not crazy. Depression isn’t a disease, it’s an occurrence. I am N-O-R-M-A-L.”