Can you still have breakdowns on antidepressants?December 30, 2018
Originally written on December 18th, 2018.
If a breakdown was a person, my first breakdown on antidepressants was greeted like an old friend who showed up unannounced on a really bad day to bring me a casserole and some wine. I know that sounds so fucking strange but anyone who has been on antidepressants knows that being “flat” including loosing interest in all sexual activities (but if you were suffering from depression in the first place, sex probably sucked before the medication) is a common part of the process and apart of the “expected symptoms”. It felt good to feel something even if I’m sobbing uncontrollably in my garage with my veins pulsating as I hold myself in a chair waiting to catch my breath. I then let out a creepy laugh and smile because I realized what was going on. Emotion!
I wasn’t always flat the first few months that I was testing the medication out but I was emotionless more than I was emotional and being emotional and reactive is so apart of my DNA, it felt weird like someone, most likely a robot, had taken over my body. My therapist said it wasn’t working for me. Besides, she said, it was triggering something because I was still spending money like a mother fucker and not always sleeping (I’ll write a post on my option to not be on a mood stabilizer right now which explains a lot about the SSRI reacting the way it did).
The thoughts weren’t really there but the energy still came and went when it pleased. I decided to wait it out because a few forums on the interwebz supported my theory I needed to hold on just a little longer plus work on my day to day management skills. Starting the process over sounded awful. I felt a fraction of PTSD thinking about returning to the doctor and getting on a new SSRI which would probably do the same exact thing as the one I was on. Plus the negatives sounded more bearable even though they consisted of things like night sweats, nausea before eating, extremely vivid dreams where Drake hands me a bouquet of flowers that then turns into a pineapple when I bring them home, and shaky hands. Don’t get me wrong, I love dreams where my idols feel real and shower me in gifts but again, it wasn’t the best time.
So yea, the first time I cried and really cried and felt it, I started crying even harder for being able to feel this way again. I felt relief and I felt this sense I could finally release all that had been weighing me down. Antidepressants aren’t suppose to remove emotions, they are suppose to help manage emotion. I never thought I’d be happy to taste salt and to be blinded by the waters of my tears but it felt amazing. I was having a really shit day that day and my body ached for a good cry, to shed my layers. Our medication should never strip us of our ability to process and feel. It’s something we must be aware of when asking questions about what is going in our body and how it makes our bodies and brains react. It’s important to have our family and friends keeping an eye out too. I had no idea I was loosing myself as much as I was until my mom mentioned I was expressing myself less and less. Nothing noticeable to those outside my close circle but definitely noticeable enough to the ones that spend the most time with me.
To answer your question, yes you can still have breakdowns on antidepressants but the truth is medication is not a solve all. They are tools we use to manage our minds. I think having issues in the realm of mental health and even in the realm of loss is having a inner peace (my favorite phrase!) and an acceptance that this is something that one must continue working with their whole life and to embrace that and help those who suffer from the same.
It’s not an easy side to embrace but that’s why I don’t mind talking about it as much as I do. Pete Davidson actually just posted something regarding his own battles with mental health and I think it’s really important we remember how many of us are hurting. More people, if not all, have something that causes their heart to ache, who wake up with wars at their brain’s door steps from sunrise to sunset. I’m really proud of these souls. We should all be happy to be here and we should keep fighting for a world where we choose to want to live always.