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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
stuckinside Offline
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Nervous is an understatement. - January 14th 2020, 02:35 PM

This thread has been labeled as triggering, particularly on the subject of suicide, by the original poster or by a Moderator. The contents of this thread therefore might not be suitable for certain sensitive users. Please take this into consideration before continuing to read.

I'm going to see a psychiatrist at the end of this month. I remember seeing one when I was younger, and the experience wasn't great at all. I'm beyond nervous. I have no idea what to expect, and I'm afraid of what she is going to say/do. I know (or rather think) that I need to be on medications. My doctor recently had me on three different medications for my mental health, but I had lost my insurance, and had to stop taking them for about 3 months. Now that I have my insurance back, everyone wants me to start taking medications again, which is hard for me to do, because I'm very paranoid about taking medications.

Usually I can talk myself in to it just long enough for the drugs to take effect, and then I'm not as paranoid about them, but this time is different. I've been working through a self help book my therapist told me to get, and in the book they dedicate a chapter to the pros and cons of medication, and it's got me wondering if I really 'need' the medication in the first place. I mean I'm dedicated to treatment at this point, but I'm wondering if I should go forward with medicine.

I'm not saying there is anything wrong with taking it when/if you need it. I know it can be very useful, but part of me wonders if it makes me worse? (My partner says that's the paranoia talking, but I'm not so sure.) When I'm on medicine I feel like a different person. I've been told that's just me finally feeling relief, but how do I know that for sure? I'm also nervous of the type of medicine they may put me on. I have a family history of addiction, and I've been told before because of that, it puts me at a predisposition to becoming addicted or having an addictive personality myself. That gives me great anxiety.

I also don't want to become dependent on medication. I've been in and out of treatment since I was about 8 for mental health related issues, and I've been on and off medication my whole life. I'm starting to wonder if this is something I'm going to have to deal with my whole life, or if it's possible for me to get better without having to take drugs. I know that sometimes people do need them long term, but I don't want that to be me. Not only is it costly, but I'm always afraid something is going to happen that prevents me from taking the medication (Like a natural disaster, or man made disaster) and then I feel like I'd fall apart without it at that point.

Needless to say I'm very nervous about this. I'm also afraid she may try to commit me. Recently opened up to my therapist about having suicidal thoughts. He talked to me about it for awhile and decided I wasn't a threat to myself, and let me go, but before that, he made me surrender my keys and call my partner to let them know I may be committed. It was really scary and anxiety provoking for me. I'm beyond afraid of being put in the hospital.

I'm not sure what to expect for this first visit. I'm not even sure if she'd prescribe me medication the first visit or not, I just know I've been having a hard time dealing with it. I do see my therapist before I see her, so I'm wondering if I should just talk to him about it? Maybe he could help me calm down about the whole situation? I don't know.

Any advice on what to do when I first meet her? Should I bring up my concerns about it to her, or should I just leave that with my therapist? If anyone is willing to share, what are your experiences like? Thanks in advance for the advice!
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Re: Nervous is an understatement. - January 18th 2020, 08:26 PM

Sorry for the late reply! Unfortunately, I don't have any personal experiences with medication. But I still wanted to add my thoughts, if it's any help.

Medication often brings up a lot of different viewpoints. While medication is necessary for some mental health disorders, such as Bipolar or Schizophrenia, medication for other mental disorders may not strictly be 'necessary' and depends on a variety of things such as: severity of the mental health disorder, and how much it impacts on your life, any side effects and whether the benefits outweigh the side effects, and personal opinion- whether you want medication or not.

You mention that you are paranoid about taking medication and I'm wondering why that might be? It's good that you've been in touch with your therapist and are working through a self-help book. Naturally, the chapter on the pros and cons would've got you thinking about whether you 'need' medication and the truth is, there isn't really a straight answer as it's different for everyone. Whether or not you need it depends on your diagnosis, how much it impacts on your life, whether you benefit from the medication or not, experience side effects or not, what others like family and professionals think, and of course, what you think.

You mention that you are concerned about medication making you worse and yet when you are on medication, you feel like a different person. Others have said that it's you finally feeling relief, but what do you think? Do you feel 'better' when you are on medication, as in, noticing symptoms less? What about compared to when you aren't on medication? Whatever you do feel, you are still you whether you are on medication or not.

If your family has a history of addiction then I think it's very understandable that you would be apprehensive about the type of medication and whether you could become addicted. Some medications are potentially more addictive than others, so if you do decide to take medication, you can always mention this so that you can have medication that may be less addictive. It may also depend on the dosage too, and a lower dosage may mean less risk of it potentially becoming addictive.

I also think your concerns of becoming dependent on medication are valid too. While many people may been on medication for the long term, for others, it may be short term- perhaps medication for relapses or more difficult times in life, to get to a 'stable' point to take part in therapy or make changes in their life and then, under the supervision of a doctor or psychiatrist, reduce the medication to not needing it anymore. Everyone is different, and some people find that medication is the only thing that helps them, while for others it may be a combination of medication, therapy and lifestyle changes, and for others still, maybe just some therapy. For those that are on medication, it's always possible to work towards getting off them (not suddenly stopping them, but slowly lowering the dosage over time)- you don't have to depend on them for the rest of your life if it's not a necessity for you. It's always good to learn coping techniques for those (hopefully rare) circumstances where you can't get hold of your medication for whatever reason.

Sorry to hear that you have experienced suicidal thoughts and are worried about being committed. It was really brave of you to be open with your therapist though and it's a credit to the relationship you have with him that you felt able to do that! Generally speaking, as long as you aren't in immediate danger of seriously hurting yourself, then you'll have a lower risk of being committed. Being committed in a hospital definitely seems like a scary thing, but it (thankfully) doesn't seem like it's a big risk for you at the moment.

Psychiatrists often diagnose and prescribe, so it's understandable you would be anxious about meeting with a psychiatrist. If you want, you could ask to talk about your concerns with your therapist- he should be able to explore your fears and maybe give you some insight about what happens when you see a psychiatrist.

When you do see your psychiatrist, I definitely think mentioning all the things you have here is a good idea. Your concerns are valid and psychiatrists should know a lot about medication for mental health, including working out which ones and dosages are best for you, and whether you 'need' them or whether they are optional and just there for you to benefit from if you choose them. Whatever happens, you should feel listened to and have your concerns taken into consideration.

Hope this helps a bit and that others can share their experiences with you!

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Re: Nervous is an understatement. - January 24th 2020, 11:10 AM

Personally I think, if you have suicide thoughts you need to go to psychotherapist. because it is almost always due to mental disorders
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