I’m quite confused these days.
I see posts from people who freely state that they are looking for advice.
They are looking for specific advice on what they can do to counteract the effects of mental health issues.
Specifically, they are wanting to hear the results that others have had with herbal and natural substance interventions.
And then they drop the bomb
Then, somewhere in their post, they’ll add that phrase that, I think, is supposed to make them appear conscientious and in tune with the real world.
They state that they are actively trying to avoid “pharmaceuticals.”
Now listen, I’m not on meds. So if you want to stop reading here because you think I’m going to disagree with your stance on them, feel free. I suspect that you’d be unlikely to accept my experience as valid anyway.
If you’re open minded and prepared to accept that I have had experience and I might know a thing or two, read on.
First, I’m not a doctor. I have nothing to sell you. I have no investment in any pharmaceutical company. I have no dog in this fight with the exception of my desire for your well being.
Here’s my bit
In the post looking for advice from random people about the efficacy of herbals and naturals and shunning the very idea of pharmaceuticals, the author is basically saying, “I’m looking for uncontrolled data that is observational only on random substances that have likely never been rigorously tested by the medical community. And I don’t want anything that has been through the gauntlet of such rigorous testing because I’m certain that must be bad.”
And now my question is, is this really what you want?
Again, I am not currently medicated. And yes, I am getting by. My stimulant currently is caffeine. My symptoms are not completely under control and never will be, but they are at a level I can accept.
But there was a time when I was medicated. And my symptoms were very much under control. I ended my medication myself because I am one of the unfortunate few who experienced side effects, specifically clinical anxiety on methylphenidate and cardio issues on amphetamine salts.
If those side effects had not been issues for me I would still be medicated.
Why? Because medication taught me much of what it is like to be in control my symptoms.
Between my mild stimulation from caffeine and from activity, my coping mechanisms developed through my t\lifetime and modified with the aid of awareness, and the insight I’d gleaned from being medicated, I am doing … shall we say close to okay.
So my new question …
To those who proudly announce that they are set against “pharmaceuticals” as if that were a dirty word instead of a term that identifies something that has been rigorously tested instead of a substance that has some of the best hand picked testimonials, I’d like to ask this question:
Why would you decide, without any experience, that you want to limit yourself to only a certain range of the least certified options?
Are you hoping to be able to claim that you’re under treatment, while continuing to struggle?
Are you afraid of what life in control might feel like?