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Fat or crazy?

October 21, 2011

I spent all afternoon yesterday trying to get a clinic to prescribe me some Prozac because it calms down my anxiety and helps me sleep. The doctor was a jerk but I finally got my meds.

This whole working thing hasn’t been easy, and I am pretty stressed out and exhausted. I’m trying to take it one day at a time, but I’m eager to use whatever tools will help me.

I was thinking about how hard it would be for those people who really believe being fat is bad for their health. The idea that they might consider not taking psychiatric drugs just so they won’t be fat boggles my mind.

Mental health issues run in my family. I’ve seen firsthand what a difference the right meds can do for someone.  And now I’m fairly craving the comfort of a daily dose of Prozac.

As my mom is apt to say, “Living comfortably thanks to pharmaceuticals.”  The choice is easy for me.  If I am one of the 25% of people that gains 10 or more extra pounds because of some psych drugs, then so be it.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. vesta44 permalink
    October 21, 2011 11:30 am

    You know, when my doctor prescribed Prozac for me, she told me one of the good things about it was that it would probably help me lose weight, that one of its side effects was decreased appetite. Like I was worried about whether I would be losing or gaining weight with an antidepressant – I was more worried about suicide ideation, wanting to sleep all the time, and having no desire to do anything at all. Prozac helped with all of those things, until I ended up with a supervisor who was abusive (to put it mildly). Then I ended up with a dosage of Prozac that was large enough that I was sleepy all the time – if I had to do jobs at work that were repetitive, I would catch myself dozing off (and who would have thought that anyone could go to sleep with a saw that cut sheets of quartz and another machine that polished the edges of those quartz squares in the same room?).

  2. October 21, 2011 12:37 pm

    I don’t know I feel like they are drugging everyone up so they do not feel the natural human emotions that come from a society as sick and dysfunctional as ours. Seperate everyone from their friends, family, fun, keep the consumerist and job pressures high as a kite, bombard them with endless soul-destroying, crisis-disaster driven news, and why are they surprised so many people are depressed? I understand someone making the personal choice for Prozac, but do consider the premise that it may not be you or something “broken” inside you, but this world we are living in.

    • jenincanada permalink
      October 22, 2011 12:09 pm

      Well said, Peep. Where and how we live, by choice or not, has a direct impact on our health, not just physically, but mentally and emotionally. Sadly, most of us can’t just pack up and move to someplace nicer. We can, however, stop watching the news, put in the effort to keep in touch with our friends and family, and make time to destress from work or other responsibilities as needed. There’s a lot of shit out there but we can fight back.

      • jenincanada permalink
        October 22, 2011 12:15 pm

        And by stop watching the news I don’t mean tune out the world, but to be choosy in what we consume. I stopped watching the regular news years ago because it was depressing the fuck out of me and making me anxious. Now I read what I want selectively through and watch the Rachel Maddow Show online when I can catch it.

  3. October 23, 2011 3:53 am

    Some people do benefit from certain psych meds. I’m one of those people that can’t tolerate most medications, psych or no. I’m super-sensitive to side effects. I take Lithium Orortate rather than Lithium Carbonate as a mood stabilizer (I have type II bipolar disorder) because it’s more bioavailable and so I can take less and get the desired effects. I’m not a doctor, so I’m not advising anyone else to do one thing or another, just sharing what I do.
    I can’t take antidepressants because most of them skyrocket me straight to Mania Land. Hypomania is hard enough to deal with–I don’t know how anyone deals with full on mania! Effexor literally had me jumping up on a countertop and preaching, scaring the hell out of my then 13 year old son who said “mom…I’m not saying you’re crazy, please don’t think that, but you need help, you really do.” The only one that didn’t do that was Prozac. It left me flat except that it increased my obsessive thoughts. I also have OCD. My brain is just a wackadoodie funhouse! I take 5-HTP and megadoses of vitamin D, which helps take the edge off the depressive aspect.
    I take a low dose of amlodipine besylate for my somewhat elevated blood pressure. Very occasionally I take 1 mg (yes, you read it right) of Valium to help me sleep. That’s all I need, even at almost 300 pounds. I was afraid the ER doctor wouldn’t believe me when I told him that I didn’t need the super duper uber deluxe prescription, but he did. He was actually very cool. He said that you can’t tell what a person needs by looking at their size, that everyone’s system is different. We need more like him!

  4. Amynomene permalink
    October 24, 2011 2:10 pm

    Sorry to hear your doctor gave you a hard time.

    I am one of those lucky folks that gains weight on antidepressants…. as in, ~50 lbs in the first six months after I started on them. I think that the excess anxiety was keeping my appetite suppressed…but the excess anxiety was also making me suicidal. So there’s a fun either/or. THEN my genius psychiatrist got the idea to put me on anti-convulsants because he had seen “some evidence” (i.e., a paper bought and paid for by the drug company) that they’d help me lose weight. So I paid probably like $400 out of pocket for a whopping 10 pound weight loss. Which of course came back immediately.

    I’ve been off any meds for nearly 2 years now. It was a long journey, but I’m very grateful. Good luck to all of you who still have to contend with the psychopharmaceutical industrial complex. It’s a tangled web to say the least.

  5. October 25, 2011 5:26 pm

    I’ve never understood that mindset either. I know there are people who need steroids to keep them healthy, but refuse to take them for fear of the side effects. It seems so odd to postpone management of a genuine disorder to prevent a change in your physical appearance, but I guess that shows where our values are in this country.


    • June 3, 2012 10:30 pm

      Try eating two egg wheits and a slice of whole wheat toast, before you work out. wait about half an hour then go baby go. dont forget to drink lots of water, could be the irritability.

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