A little while back I got an email from a lovely, orthodox Jewish correspondent that really floored me. In a nutshell, she wrote that: ‘Anti-depressants work, and they let me enjoy my life without requiring me to put in any more time, effort, money or work.’
If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you’ll know that I’m pretty ‘anti’ anti-depressants. You might also know that I recently wrote a pocket guide, called ‘Causes and Cures of Depression’, that sets out why anti-depressants are not the panacea they pretend to be, and examines depression from the God-based holistic view point that it needs to be tackled across body, mind and soul.
My happy-pill induced crisis of confidence
So I got this email and all of a sudden I had a huge crisis of confidence: had I got the wrong end of the stick, here? Here I was, telling people that they had to work on the underlying things that were triggering their depressions, with all the attendant difficulty and effort and occasional pain that entails. And here she was, telling me she’d got burned-out trying to do that, and that happy pills were letting her live a great life.
Dear reader, I was in a state of extreme mental confusion for two days, trying to work if God was giving me a clue that I’d got everything backwards. I mean, we ARE meant to enjoy our life… we ARE meant to feel happy and productive as much as possible, and if happy pills were letting people do that, maybe they really were OK?
The argument sounded pretty convincing, initially, and it kind of blew me away. But then, after a few days of wandering around in a daze, I decided to do a long talking to God session about it all and this is what I got:
Over the coming week, I’m planning to post up some more stuff about the spiritual dimension to depression, and I’d love to hear your feedback and comments, if you have any.