My Decision to Go Back on Mental Health Medication
My decision to go back on medication was not taken lightly. It certainly wasn’t a decision I made overnight. It’s been a lingering thought I tried to push back for months now. I’ve exhausted all my self-help go-tos and now I’m ready to admit to myself that I need to go back on medication. This isn’t the first time, and I don’t believe it will be the last.
I’m not sure why it took so long to make this decision. I’ve been on medication before. In fact, I’ve been on and off medication for the past 20+ years. This is nothing new to me. And while I want to be able to fight my battle “on my own,” the rational part of my mind is telling me enough is enough. I need help. Take the help. I’m ready to admit I need it.
There’s nothing to be embarrassed about, right? I’d take medication for a cold or infection, right? So why wouldn’t I feel OK with taking medication for something that will help me function? Because of stigma. Because I don’t want to feel like I need medication. Because I don’t want to feel dependent on anything. But what is my alternative? Feeling shitty day in and day out because I refuse the help I know will make a difference? I have ongoing battles with myself, and I’ve been avoiding this moment for months now. Maybe I’ll start tomorrow, I tell myself. But it’s always tomorrow, and I have yet to accept that I need help… until now.
I’m not on my own anymore. I have a husband, and I have a son. I need to be there for my family. I need to be productive, and I need to take care of us. I know being on medication will help me get out of bed. I know being on medication will help me be the best mom for my son, who is a toddler and needs his mom. I don’t have time to sulk in my bed for days. I can’t disappear and not talk to anyone. I can’t avoid my responsibilities. I can’t avoid my family.
I’ve waited too long this time. I should have gone back on medication a while back, but I was determined to fight the fight alone. While I pat myself on the back for trying to get through without taking anything, I also scold myself for waiting this long. I don’t want my son to remember me as a crying wreck who snaps easily. I want him to remember me as a happy person, which I am when I’m not stuck in this rut. As I re-read this paragraph, the tears start to stream down my face because I know what I must do. I know what I need to do.
Today is a new day, and I’m accepting the help and moving forward. I’m not a failure because I can no longer do it on my own. I’m a winner because I’m accepting myself for what I am and taking the right steps to make things better for myself and my family.
Editor’s note: Please see a doctor before starting or stopping a medication.
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Thinkstock photo by Leszek Czerwonka