One of the most pernicious ‘pro’ anti-depressants arguments is that depression and anxiety are just another type of ‘disease’, like diabetes. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve heard Prozac et al compared to insulin, the argument being that just as insulin cures diabetes, Prozac ‘cures’ depression.
This is misleading for a number of reasons.
First of all, insulin isn’t a brand name. It’s a specific substance that has to follow a precise chemical formulation in order to work in the body. Change the chemical formula for insulin even minutely, and it would stop being insulin, and stop having the same effect, ie, people would start dying from diabetes again.
Secondly, if there was a single chemical imbalance supposedly causing depression, then why does each anti-depressant have a different chemical formula? (The chemical formulation has to be different in each brand of drug to enable the pharmaceutical companies to patent it, and prevent other companies from ripping it off.)
How can so many different chemical formulations be 'curing' the same chemical imbalance?
Is anyone else out the wondering how it’s possible to have so many different chemical formulas of anti-depressants, apparently all curing the same ‘chemical imbalance’? Smacks of something a little ‘off’, no? (See my comments in the previous post about how regular marijuana and alcohol use can also ‘cure’ anxiety and depression.)
Thirdly, this article (click the blue) contains a bunch of quotes, from a whole load of scientists completely debunking the idea of the chemical imbalance. To sum up their arguments in a nutshell, if the so-called chemical imbalance is real, then you could measure it, the same way you can specifically measure the levels of insulin in the body when it comes to diagnosing diabetes.
If doctors don’t ‘guess’ you’ve got diabetes, then why do they guess you’ve got depression?
But the bigger, more profound point I’m trying to make throughout this week’s posts is that life is meant to be challenging – God’s behind it, and He’s trying to achieve something with all our hardships and suffering. Believe me, I’ve also gone through the emotional wringer many, many times, and I know it’s definitely not a picnic, and often incredibly hard and difficult to cope with.
But my emotional difficulties brought me much closer to God, because I could see that there was no other way of getting through them. And, they also led to a bunch of profound insights and wholesale changes in my life, and my beliefs.
While I still have a long way to go, I’m definitely a much nicer, better and more emotionally-balanced person now – and that’s also being reflected in my kids.
The long road that is really the short cut
But was it quick, easy or enjoyable? Heck no! I literally went to hell and back . But it was 100% worth it, because whatever peace of mind I’ve got now, it’s genuine and not a quick-fix, and I didn’t just acquire it for myself, I also fixed those problems going forward, so my kids hopefully won’t have to struggle with anxiety, depression and a whole bunch of other issues, the way I did.
So it’s hard to say it, and probably even harder to read it, but it really does appear to be a choice between body, and soul, this world and the next world, comfort zone denial vs hard work and fundamental change, more drugs vs more introspection.
These choices are probably the most difficult facing any of us. But the consequences of choosing God over Prozac will reverberate down the line for generations to come.