I'm Not Ashamed to Take Mental Health Medications
I'm not ashamed to take mental health medications even though people have tried to convince me to do otherwise.
It 's hard to count the number of times people have confronted me with their opinion about medication to treat mental health conditions. Several individuals have tried to convince me to replace psychiatric medication with meditation. I've been called a "product of big pharmaceutical companies!" or told "You don't need pills to make you happy!" I am treated for both bipolar 2 disorder and ADHD. Regardless of people's opinion on the subject, I am not ashamed to admit that I take medication for my mental health and in this blog post I share the reasons why.
Without Bipolar 2 and ADHD Medication, I Couldn't Live
Forget about thriving, I have tried living a healthy life without mental health medications and guess what? It didn't work. It was not until my bipolar breakdown in college and involuntarily placement at a mental hospital that medicine became the best option for treatment. Dealing with depression and the ups and downs of bipolar disorder unmedicated did not prevent me from hitting rock bottom.
When people tell me that exercise and nutrition could have saved me, I inform that I have been a serious athlete a majority of my life. I am not ashamed to admit that I could not live without medication to treat my bipolar 2 disorder.
A couple years after my diagnosis of bipolar 2, I was diagnosed with ADHD. It was evident to my doctors that this was a major problem that prevented me from thriving in school, work and socially. Again, people shared their negative opinion with me about this condition as well, but the proof is in the pudding. Before treatment for ADHD, I struggled academically, barely graduating from high school and dropping out of college twice. Shortly after I started taking ADHD medication, I received my B.A. from North Carolina State University and began working on a career in advocacy and writing. I am not sharing this for bragging rights, but simply to show the evidence to say medications for mental health work. I could not thrive without medication to treat my ADHD, and I could not survive without medication to treat my bipolar depression.
Mental Health Medications are a Blessing, Not a Curse
It is rare that you hear people's negative perspective on insulin for diabetics or a debate over diuretics for high blood pressure. However, when it comes to medication for mental health people do not hesitate to question it. Medication for mental health conditions is a blessing, not a curse brought upon by society and pharmaceutical companies.
It is unfair to judge people for taking mental health medication and prevents individuals struggling with their mental health from receiving the proper treatment they are in need of. Honestly, it does not make sense to me. Why would I get off of the medication that has helped me attain a life where I can thrive as an individual separate of my condition? What? Just to be able to say, "Hey look at me, I don't take medication!"
If you have been able to exclaim this and have a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, there are one of two things going on: You are in a manic episode, or you are misdiagnosed with bipolar disorder. I am not a scientist or doctor. I barely passed chemistry and biology in college. However, I am an expert in living with bipolar 2 disorder, and I can tell you that if it were not for by bipolar 2 medication, I would not be here today.
Exercise, self-help books, meditation and nutritional eating all benefit my life in many respects. However, they are used to help manage my bipolar disorder and ADHD, not to treat it. If I am happy, I am healthy. To each its own, but I would refrain from judging my route to happiness without walking part of it in my shoes.
Blum, H. (2017, October 16). I'm Not Ashamed to Take Mental Health Medications, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, October 15 from https://www.healthyplace.com/living-with-bipolar-blog/i-am-not-ashamed-to-take-mental-health-medication