This scares me. Someone posts on a messageboard somewhere that they’re a little depressed. This is someone who’s never shown any signs that there’s something wrong in the past, she’s always bubbly and upbeat. People start telling her to see her doctor, that there’s medication for this.
And this scares me.
Life is full of ups and downs. As a matter of fact, my mom calls the down days “the downsies”. Sometimes they’re hormonal, sometimes just a reflection of the environment at the time (lots of cloudy weather, for instance, with very little sunlight), and sometimes because of what’s happening in life. Like having a bad day on the job and deciding you really and truly hate what you do. Until it passes and things get back to normal. The blues, the downsies, a funk, PMS (Poor Me Syndrome), there are many names for this and, you know what? I’m not a doctor or anything like that, but from my experience, most of the time these things don’t last more than a couple of days. And to be told “you can take a pill for that”, well, my God, what kind of a society have we become where normal hormonal changes need a pill?
I’m not talking about the truly depressed. I’m not talking about the people who have these symptoms for weeks, months, years on end. Not the people who have a real medical need for medication to help balance out their body’s chemistry. The truly depressed don’t just “snap out of it”.
What I do when I’ve got the blues is I wallow a little bit, feeling really sorry for myself. Nobody loves me, everybody hates me, where did I put the worms? Then I’ll read an entertaining novel, murder mystery or horror story along the lines of Stephen King or Peter Straub. Or I’ll get busy cleaning something I’ve put off for too long. Do something physical that I don’t need to think about very much, but something constructive. And once that’s done, I’ve forgotten about my downsies and I’m usually quite pleased with myself.
But it bothers me that those of us who can and will snap out of it are advised to see a doctor.
Because, you know, there’s a pill for that.
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