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Should I take the medication my doctor prescribed? I lost my parents and am depressed.

Tagged as: Family, Health<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (1 November 2016) 6 Answers - (Newest, 4 November 2016)
A female United Kingdom, *ELLULAH writes:

It's a long time since I came on here, but in the past I have always been given good advice so here goes.

6 years ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer. A couple of operations and some treatment, and I got the all clear late last year. Dad had skin cancer quite bad, but he was fighting it and seemed ok, so I spent my time taking him and mum to the hospital.

Just when I thought everything was going ok and things had settled a bit, my mother and father were in a car accident, mum was badly injured and her life support was turned off the next day. Dad died in my arms 9 weeks later from complications. I was devestated, and I can't get over the fact they are gone. I have a very close family and everyone has supported each other. I'm finding it so hard to cope, I cry every day. Doctor has prescribed some antidepressants but should I take them?

Sorry this is so long, I tried to keep it as short as possible.

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A female reader, aunt honesty Ireland + , writes (4 November 2016):

aunt honesty agony auntNo don't take the pills. You are not depressed you are grieving and you need someone to talk to and to share your pain with. Yes the pills may dull it but they won't help you come to terms with what has happened in your life. Contact a grief counselor first, secondly find any charities that help or if there are any groups near you where people are also suffering from loss.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (2 November 2016):

I'm not a doctor so I won't comment on medical things but a great place to start would be by contacting Cruse, www.cruse.org.uk, the bereavement charity as they have a helpline and excellent counsellors that helped me so much after my father's death.

All the best x

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A male reader, no nonsense Aidan United Kingdom +, writes (2 November 2016):

It does dismay me that the attitude of the medical profession so often seems to be to try and fix things with pills. If you have any reservations about taking them, I suggest you book another discussion with the doctor. You need to work through with your doctor what your concerns are about it. You have been through a really awful time, and feelings of depression, sadness, grief and anger, would all be expected in the circumstances. So I also think that you should consider some counselling. You probably need someone to talk to, someone to listen in a safe space, more than you need any pills.

I wish you all the very best.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (2 November 2016):

I agree that counselling will probably help you a lot. After that distressing experience, I would imagine that you really need to talk to someone and get emotional support. The meds are your call obviously. If you are wary of taking them and I imagine you are, then stay away from them would be my advice if you feel you can cope.

Coming off them isn't a breeze I believe. But if you feel you need the extra support then, by all means. I don't like the way doctors prescribe anti-depressants for the bad things that happen in life and we as human beings get through the hard times (if we are strong enough) without medication. I do think though that what you have just been through must have been particularly distressing. Only you know how strong you are.

Sending you love and hugs x

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (2 November 2016):

I see you're in the UK, I am too. At the moment you cannot pass a day without crying - which is natural considering the grief you are experiencing but it will also be inhibiting your ability to live life day-to-day. If you're really worried about the tablets then see a second doctor or return to you first and ask for more info - such as what dose have they put you on and why (it's wise to start on a lower dose to allow for side effects to settle and then gradually increase only if needed - opposed to starting on high doses), ask what tablet you're on and why - is it a medication that acts to give you a boost or is it some form of inhibitor and again ask for the pros and cons of both.

I am currently, for the first time in my life, on an anti anxiety and antidepressant course of treatment. I hated the thought of taking pills because I assumed it just masked your feelings and didn't help with the root of a problem. I am also receiving counselling, so the tablets were prescribed to help me get through the counselling without becoming an even worse emotional wreck. Combining the low dose medication with therapy to actually address the reasons for my depression and anxiety has proved to be working. I would definitely recommend addressing the cause of your feelings by seeing a counsellor or even attending grief sessions lots of local areas run for people (sometimes this can be in small groups but there would be no discussion of personal information in any group counselling/workshop type therapy).

Only you can decide whether you want the tablets. Maybe they will help you come to terms with your thoughts and feelings, maybe you will need a counsellor to do that effectively or maybe you will hate being on them.

Your best bet is to voice your concerns to your doctor and have an appointent to talk through the medication and whether there are alternatives that might suit you better or whether for the short term it is an option for you.

My own doctor has my trust and I am confident in her decisions for my health and wellbeing that meant when I was eventually given a prescription I was more accepting.

I hope you have a good doctor whom has your vote of confidence - if you don't feel they really listen or you just don't click it then don't be afraid to try someone else.

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A female reader, Honeypie United States + , writes (2 November 2016):

Honeypie agony auntI'm SO sorry for your loss.

I think you should consider some grief counseling first. It's really not that strange that you have trouble coping. If your therapist/counselor thinks the anti-depressants are a good thing I'd go for it. But the meds without ANY for if counseling? Not a fan.

I lost my mom over 5 years ago and I STILL miss her and I STILL have days where the loss feels too great.

Many many positive thoughts going your way.

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