Saturday, May 20, 2006

Pick Your Poison

Joan, my therapist, helped a little, but to be honest, at that point I was beyond repair-by-talking.

"Maybe I should go on antidepressants," I told her. "I don't know what else to do. If I could get better by myself I would have by now."

"I think that's probably true," she said. "Once the chemicals of depression start flowing, it's hard to reverse them on your own."

"And I can't live like this. My family is suffering. I can't function."

"What would you do if you couldn't get help from your doctor?"

I thought about it. "If I stayed with my family, I'd have to become an alcoholic or start taking a lot of nonprescribed drugs." It's how my grandma did it when her five kids were small. She drank a six pack before noon, leaving beer cans all over the house as she did her chores.

Silence.

"I think a lot about Percocet. And pot. And about drinking and smoking, all the time."

Silence.

"Those drugs are all depressants," I observed.

"You'd be self-medicating," Joan observed.

Of course. So my choice was to self-medicate with depressants that would make me sicker, run away from home, or have my doctor prescribe antidepressants and monitor me closely.

It seems like a no-brainer. Still, sunk in Joan's office chair, I allowed myself the illusion of choice. What would it be like to veer off into alcoholism? I had such great role models for this; it couldn't possibly be that hard to get there. Of course, I'd have get treatment, because my husband would insist on it and I didn't want to screw up my kids in exactly the same way I am screwed up. And then I could give up all my responsibilities and go somewhere bucolic for 28 days to detox and get better. There was something very satisfying about that picture, about just...

...letting...

...go.

1 comment:

Miss J said...

This post reminds me of how erratic you can become once you've polarized. Like the pendulum swings, so do we. Waaaaaay off to the depressed side, then we swing waaaay off to the destructive side. Not like little swings from small moods to petty indulgences. Tough.