Anti-Depressants


This is the first time I have written about something which is not specifically Pagan, but this is an important topic.

Firstly, I would like to say that I have been treated successfully with anti-depressants in the past for stress, depression and pain relief. I have never been addicted to anti-depressants. I talk about this freely and have only met one other person who has been addicted to anti-depressants and he was taking valium in the 70’s.

From talking to others, it was taking the pills and also doing other things to counteract the depression or stress that has worked. At times I have used techniques of forcing myself to get out of the house and other times I have written a list of five tasks I wanted to accomplish. The first one would be “get up” as at one point it was so difficult to do that I wasn’t able to get up until four o’clock and once I got up I felt better as I had accomplished something. Others may use counselling or other tools.

I was shocked to hear on a Pagan podcast recently someone saying that he’d said to his teacher that he needed to go back on anti-depressants and his teacher saying “hold off on that for a while”. This is the reason that I am writing this post. Whether or not you are on anti-depressants is between yourself and your doctor. Do not listen to anyone else, even if they are your teacher or the spirit of Gerald Gardner. If you feel you need them, go to your doctor.

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Depression


Last night I went to a talk at Treadwell’s about Depression in Paganism. The talk was structured with Christina Oakley-Harrington asking Cat, who was the speaker, questions about depression.

At first, the “Christianity is all about sacrifice” line was really starting to annoy me. I come from a Scottish Protestant background and Protestant crosses have no Jesus on them because they emphasise the fact that Jesus was raised, whereas Catholics emphasis that Jesus was sacrificed. It nearly got to the point where I stood up and said something, but thankfully the topics veered away from that.

Cat is a Pagan priest in Derbyshire and the rest of the talk centred on her experiences of depression, caused mainly by a divorce and loss of job at the same time. If your world crashes down around you, you will probably be depressed no matter how strong you are.

As someone who has beaten depression I enjoyed hearing about her experiences with depression and her way of dealing with things. I enjoyed the fact that she wasn’t afraid to stand up and say she has trouble with depression. So many people have been or are depressed and can’t speak about it.

I also enjoyed hearing about her service as a pagan priest and hospital chaplain. We do need people to fulfil that role, but I am glad I’m not called to do that.