Why I'm on Antidepressants Even Though They Make Me Lazy

November 20, 2021 Mahevash Shaikh

I have been taking antidepressants since 2018, even though they make me lazy. They are lifesavers that help keep my clinical depression down to a manageable level. However, they come with a hard-to-ignore drawback: they make me feel drowsy. I have long been one of those people who are slightly sleepy at all times. Antidepressants, while giving me clarity of thought and a will to live, make me more sluggish than usual. 

Antidepressants Make Me Lazy: Significantly Less Productive

All medicines have a range of side effects, and antidepressants are no different. Side effects vary from person to person, and so does the intensity. While I have to put up with a few other undesirable side effects due to my medication, they are low in impact. Drowsiness is by far the worst side effect that affects both my personal and professional life. 

It's a given that if you are feeling constantly sleepy, you will be less productive. In other words, my antidepressants make me lazy, or at least less awake than I used to be when I was unmedicated. Today, I have to consistently push myself to do things that "normal" people accomplish without a second thought. From waking up when my alarm rings to beginning work in the morning, many things are a struggle for me now. Even though I try my best to be productive, there are days when I get tired of fighting the urge to rest. I often give in and take some time off. I rearrange my schedule according to my energy levels to make time for a nap or two. 

The Pros Outweigh the Cons

In a fairer world, antidepressants would not make me want to lie in bed as much as possible. However, feeling drowsy is a small price to pay as compared to the pros of antidepressants. I would rather be groggy and less productive on medication. Because I know that the alternative will lead to unmanageable levels of depression and increased suicidal ideation, I will continue to take my pills. Ultimately, my life is much more valuable than the number of hours I put in at work. Depression is a disability, not a choice, and I will not apologize for taking care of myself. Yes, my work matters to me, but my quality of life is far more important. I will continue to take my antidepressants for as long as I need them.

Are you medicated? What effects do your pills have on your productivity and work-life in general? Please let me know your experiences in the comments below. 

APA Reference
Shaikh, M. (2021, November 20). Why I'm on Antidepressants Even Though They Make Me Lazy, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 15 from

Author: Mahevash Shaikh

Mahevash Shaikh is a millennial blogger, author, and poet who writes about mental health, culture, and society. She lives to question convention and redefine normal. You can find her at her blog and on Instagram and Facebook.

Amanda Pelland
June, 24 2023 at 6:21 am

I can related to everything in this blog, thank you! My house is messy and I was a clean freak and I take naps during the day which I never did, but you know what, I'm happy and content and look forward to the next day because I am medicated for depression.

December, 2 2022 at 11:25 pm

I have come across your blog by googling "Is my anti-depressants making me feel lazy?" I guess they do & I'm not the only one. Now, I have to decide to be "not depressed " or "not tired." 🤔😒😬

December, 3 2021 at 3:45 am

I've never given a thought to antidepressants causing drowsiness in me. They might have said that in the initial info that I got but I haven't looked at it since. Because I'm constantly tired and now I'm wondering if it's the antidepressants or depression causing me to be unproductive. I certainly have similar experiences, not being able to get up with the alarm or do the most basic of activities like showering regularly, doing the dishes, cleaning the litterbox, etc.

December, 4 2021 at 7:16 am

It's a catch-22 situation, isn't it? Best to ask your psychiatrist so that they can up or change your dose, or explain that the pandemic is largely responsible for my lethargy (this is what my psych said). Take care.

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