Chemical Dependency ~ The Legal Kind (Part I)

I’ve always been a worry-wart, high-strung, stressed-out kind of person.  I landed in the hospital for a week of tests toward the end of my Kindergarten year.  Seems the rigors of cutting stiff waxy milk cartons with little rounded-edged scissors (really an impossible task for anyone!) and the stress of trying to figure which hand to put over my heart every morning for the Pledge of Allegiance (I have a curious difficulty telling my left from my right) ended up giving me extreme stomach pains.  They thought I might have ulcers at the ripe old age of five.

I was the queen of angst before angst was a word.  I dreaded new situations, hated being out of my comfort zone.  I quit jobs when they got too scary and left a high school friend roommate-less when I chickened out of going to college the year after high school.  I spent several more times in the hospital, with perplexed doctors trying to figure out what was causing my acute stomach spasms.  I kept plodding on the best I could, not knowing life could be any different.

It wasn’t until six years ago that I learned how different life could be.  I had reached a stress level so debilitating that I couldn’t function.  Oldest Son had just graduated from high school.  I was trying to plan a nice party for him.  I was secretly worried about him going off to college and probably losing the scholarship that he had been awarded.  But none of these things alone could have accounted for the overwhelming fear I was experiencing.  I was at an age where I could blame hormones,  and assumed I was in the beginning stages of menopause.  Whatever was the cause, I needed help quickly!

Big Daddy made an appointment for me.  He was worried.   After several appointments of talking with a counselor, and them learning of my dad’s family history of depression, I was put on an SSRI.  I was highly skeptical.  There was no way a simple little pill was going to pull me out of this funk.

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4 Responses to “Chemical Dependency ~ The Legal Kind (Part I)”


  1. 1 Cyndi July 7, 2009 at 7:47 am

    Thank you so much for talking about this. It’s one of the few topics I’ve had a difficult time bringing myself to write about. I don’t know why there is such stigma attached to taking SSRIs (even in my own head – the psych major!). They saved my life from spiraling out of control a couple of years ago and I recently went back on a low maintenance dose…beautiful thing.

    • 2 les@mamaneeds2rant July 7, 2009 at 7:46 pm

      I never really plan what I’m going to write about–it’s just there. But I knew I’d eventually have to write about this. It’s so important. People can change their lives with the right medication. This kind of treatment should carry no more stigma than insulin for a diabetic or iron supplements for anemia.

  2. 3 Emily July 7, 2009 at 9:20 am

    better living through pharmaceuticals… it works when properly prescribed

  3. 4 Evenshine July 7, 2009 at 10:46 pm

    It shouldn’t, but it does. But talking about it honestly is a baby step towards understanding. Kudos to you.


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