January 27, 2019:

It's scary to me when friends talk of "handling it by myself". That is, sucking it up on one's lonely own, American-style. That's so us, as a people. But it cannot lead to recovery, not ever, and if you think it will you're deluding yourself.

I know this. It's what I did for most of my life.

In my world it was fear of meds which prevented me from seeking treatment. I think, a lot of people relate to this. We see our friends who begin SSRIs become sluggish. They speak slowly, their eyes dull, they seem to shuffle through life. It's better than suicide but from outside it looks like not-life: like you're breathing but so what?

I was particularly afraid of the sexual side effects: suppressed sex drive. Which — c'mon dude get serious — was an utterly pointless concern since untreated depression and sex don't especially mix. It was only ever after therapy and bupropion that sex became a practical reality. Discuss the fear with your shrink, work out the proper cocktail. Don't suffer because you believe you have to.

It can take time to balance the right mix of meds. Some people quit 'cos they dislike the first version. Tell your shrink how you're feeling and she'll adjust dosages, add other ingredients. Bupropion is often prescribed to counteract the tendency to sluggishness under SSRIs. Be patient, be communicative, get it right.

All of which is totally impossible with acute depression. Yes, I know. You can't communicate with your shrink because you can't communicate at all.

Get help. Make that giant effort to explain what you're feeling. If you have a shrink you trust, do what she tells you. The thought of working at something is hyper-intimidating but believe me, feeling better is an amazing thing.