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Distrust of antidepressants

Re: Distrust of antidepressants
May 22, 2010, 03:07:01 AM
Quote from: AnHero
I though you were a man of science. Don't you think you show some actual evidence that substances help people learn or self-reflect?
Look into the early history of LSD, namely the research done in the 1950's by Canadian psychiatrists with alcoholics and later the LSD sessions run by Aldous Huxley.

It's more of a rhetorical question.

Also keep in mind that even if in theory LSD helps "expand the mind," does it actually deliver? Does it actually make more successful people? Or a more successful population?

Re: Distrust of antidepressants
May 22, 2010, 03:14:40 AM
Quote from: AnHero
It's more of a rhetorical question.
Oh.  May I ask what the intention of it was then, as I don't see what point you're trying to make?

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Also keep in mind that even if in theory LSD helps "expand the mind," does it actually deliver? Does it actually make more successful people? Or a more successful population?
Sometimes, and it depends.  An egalitarian approach to powerful mind-altering substances (like the one advocated by Timothy Leary) is a sure fire way towards societal implosion.  Drugs like LSD should only be used by certain people, under certain circumstances.  And even then, only a handful of times at most.  Understanding the specifics of who, when, and how much can get pretty complicated, and as far as I'm concerned, is very much up for debate.

Re: Distrust of antidepressants
June 13, 2010, 04:06:20 AM
here's what confuses me: a person is prescribed pills that physically alters their chemicals because they have relayed ANECDOTAL evidence of their depression.  wouldn't a doctor want to "look at" this theoretical patient's chemicals before they prescribe them things that will alter this patient's chemicals?  instead, they prescribe something that will physically alter the body based solely on anecdotal evidence.  furthermore, how do we know that a chemical causes a feeling?  perhaps a feeling causes a "spike" in chemicals or perhaps the chemical level and the feeling simply coincide.  once again, the model of mental health is the "common man," not the zen-master.

my broad diagnosis of depression:  a lack of outlets for one's thymos.

Re: Distrust of antidepressants
June 13, 2010, 10:03:07 PM
I would like an educated response to this:

Would you consider individuals who have a mental disorder to be superior or weak beside those throughout life without?

I have an IQ bracket in the top 5 percent, throughout childhood I thought differently than the other children and later teenagers, and so being extremely shy - developed the mental disorder Depersonalization.

Through trauma, stress, I had developed this disorder, through my incompatibility with the herds, and stupidity of a utilitarian education system.

So:
1) If many of our prided intellectuals throughout history have had mental disorders, or became mentally insane; Nietzsche, Baudelaire etc shouldn't we be saying those with certain mental ticks like depression, in a society as ours, are of superior quality?
2) Since the medication I take has relieved the systems of Derealization and Depersonalization, to live a balanced non-torturous mental life, should I be weary of medication? We have no problem with pagan 'herbal remedies,' and yet somehow we all rail against chemicals, even though, even chemicals are products of the earth.

Last of all.. I fully realize the sick fact that medication is given for any small symptom, and that our society is built towards.. 'striving for happiness' when happiness is only an ideal, and all other emotions are valuable. - But in some cases, where the disorder is so extreme and unbearable, shouldn't we approve medication?


Re: Distrust of antidepressants
June 14, 2010, 12:20:20 AM
Would you consider individuals who have a mental disorder to be superior or weak beside those throughout life without?

Through trauma, stress, I had developed this disorder, through my incompatibility with the herds, and stupidity of a utilitarian education system.

So:
1) If many of our prided intellectuals throughout history have had mental disorders, or became mentally insane; Nietzsche, Baudelaire etc shouldn't we be saying those with certain mental ticks like depression, in a society as ours, are of superior quality?

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. - J Krishnamurti

Re: Distrust of antidepressants
June 14, 2010, 08:27:42 AM
wouldn't a doctor want to "look at" this theoretical patient's chemicals before they prescribe them things that will alter this patient's chemicals?
First of all, the baseline levels of serotonin (and probably other neurochemicals) vary from person to person. A doctor could not determine what's amiss in your head through measurements alone. Secondly, listening to a patient talk is cheaper and more convenient than running sophisticated tests.

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my broad diagnosis of depression:  a lack of outlets for one's thymos.
I agree, but that doesn't mean genetic/biological factors don't play a role in depression. Having a genetic predisposition can cause the magnitude of depression to be out of proportion to the cause. I beleive in such cases the use of antidepressants is warranted -- if one's depression becomes so severe  that it becomes impossible to address the underlying issue(s). Admittedly, my position is rooted in personal experience. I currently take a mild dose of Lexapro, and I'm grateful for it.

Anecdote time.
I pretty much inherited my mom's brain. I got her intelligence along with the slew of mental issues that run in her family.  I started to experience depression/anxiety when I moved from a small, somewhat rural town to go to school in the city. At first I thought it might've been my daily marijuana use and non-existent sleep schedule, so I quit smoking and normalized my sleeping habits... but my mental condition only worsened. I became agoraphobic, impassive and extremely anti-social: I stopped seeing friends, stopped going to class, had no desire to do anything. Being a dysfunctional wreck, I decided I needed help, and started seeing a psychiatrist. After about a month on Lexapro, I began to feel 'normal' again. I realized that I had cut myself off from my family and that I hated the city, so I started going home on weekends.

Now, I am NOT saying antidepressants are A-OK, just that they can have certain benefits for certain people, specifically those like myself who have a family history of depression. But they have become an emotional panacea... a way for people to numb themselves to problems instead of fixing them. (OMG LIEK SOMA FROM BRAVE NEW WRLD HULXEY IS RIGTH ABOUTEVRTHING!!!!!1)  As per Modernity, the convenient solution is the correct solution, even if it fails -- Antidepressants didn't stop Eric Harris from shooting up Columbine High School, but w/e!

It's not just anti-depressants, though. Every drug that "fixes" mood/thought/behavior is over-prescribed, and this trend is only growing. Psychopharmacology is a ticking time-bomb. My mom is a first grade teacher, and she provides interesting insight into how future generations are forming. She's told me some of the children in her class are on Prozac already... wtf. Developmental risks notwithstanding, we're raising kids into adults who will be dependent on ADs to cope with life. And then there's the 'ADHD' phenomenon, turning kids whose balls have barely dropped into speed freaks... The children in her class prescribed to stimulants are much more attentive and focused than before they were before, but I can only imagine the state of dependency they'll be in by the time they're 20. I myself took Adderall for a time in high school, and kicking it was torture... I knew I didn't really need it, but for a young, naive teen with a penchant for anything psychoactive, it was too good a deal to pass up! Tell your GP you have trouble focusing and in 15 minutes your parents will be paying for your own personal supply of speed.... Again, wtf.

I admire the generations of the past, particularly my maternal ancestors, for being able to deal with life without any chemical assistance (or maybe they took St John's Wort, a flower that supposedly has properties similar to an SSRI antidepressant...)


tl;dr: Antidepressants can be beneficial but they're over-prescribed.