Tuesday, July 9, 2013

A Full Bottle of Pills and an Empty Wallet

Yesterday, I took the opportunity while I had a doctor's appointment for a minor and unrelated issue, to finally get medication for my depression. I am fortunate to have insurance through work, unlike quite a few people in this town, but the company I work for likes to skimp of the quality of the plans that they provide, so leftover bills can be awful, as I have learned in the past.

So, on what rare occasions I do need to see a doctor, I end up going to the same Medicaid funded clinic that my mom and dad do, and I have the exact same doctor as them as well. This guy, well, let's just say that the state scraped the bottom of the barrel, as the American saying goes, in hiring him. He really doesn't know what he's doing, and I wouldn't trust him with any serious problems. I just went there because the allergy problems I was having made for good cover, since I haven't moved out of home yet.

I went in, talked him about the allergies, he wrote the prescriptions for that, and I talked to him about the depression, and how I have had it for most of my life, and in recent years, it's caused quite a bit of pain, stiffness, and fatigue. He didn't quite seem to understand why I would be depressed, and was basically saying "You have a job, insurance, and a house, what do you have to be depressed about?".

Great..... Yet another person who doesn't understand it, and he's a doctor. (It's bad enough that my family doesn't get it). He wrote the prescription without protest, he asked if I was suicidal, I told him no, which is true, I have been in the past, but that's been at least 4 years ago.

So, 60 mg of Cymbalta it is. After going to the pharmacy to get all the perscriptions I got the bottle of anti-depressants, and hid it in my old SUV. It's only been 2 days on it so far, I probably won't know fully how it effects me for at least a week, but I have noticed slight changes in the problems with the fatigue, I have been waking up easier, and I'm not as tired during the day.

As I put the bottle away, I'm thinking this is ridiculous, all of it, having to hide this about my life because of a parent who is ignorant about mental illness, despite her entire family having issues with it, the fact the high co pays with my insurance wiped out what little cash I had left in the bank (rebuilding the house has draining my money horribly, but at least I get paid Friday), and the fact that I still can't come out about being agnostic.

Add to that the fact, that I still haven't been able to get around to seeing a psychiatrist about my suspicions that I could be autistic. I need to keep reminding myself one day at a time, a lot of progress has been made already, just a few months ago, I wouldn't have thought that I would be able to buy a house, and I have. I would have never thought that I would get this close to freedom. I've come so far, but it's still feels so far away at times.

Sheldon's note: I know my posts have been rather depressing lately (no pun intended), but I've ran out of ideas for religion related posts. I've said all I need to say about fundamentalism, I think you all get how awful of a philosophy it is by now, and until I actually have something new to talk about on that topic, I'll leave it alone. There's been some things in my personal life I just need to lay out there, to get it off my mind, to preserve what precious little sanity I have left.

I really do want to thank everyone who have been so supportive of me on the blog, and on Google +, if you haven't added me over there, check out my profile, and add me to circles. I promise you, I am more cheerful over there than I am here most of the time. If you aren't on Google+, join today, you won't regret it, there are great people over there, and it tends to be a smarter and more liberal/skeptical crowd there. If you are a fan of the blog, you will fit over there.


  1. "You have a job, insurance, and a house, what do you have to be depressed about?".

    :: headdesk ::

    Does this dolt understand neurochemistry? Does he understand that depression is often rooted in chemical imbalances or past trauma? I'm sorry you had to deal with that. Let us know how the Cymbalta works out.

    1. I guess he his thinking that I'm in a better place in life than most people he gets coming in the office, but yes, he doesn't get it.

      Once I get settled into the new house, I'll get a psychiatrist or psychologist, leftover bills from insurance be damned, I'll deal with them.

      I especially want to know about my suspicions about autism, I want closure on that one way or another.

    2. Look around in your area for a licensed practical counselor. They tend to charge less, so some insurances will cover more sessions with them. An LPC cannot prescribe meds, but they can do diagnostic screenings, etc. that will help you narrow down what is going on. They can also provide a referral if you do need to see another professional. An LPC can also help you with your depression-which would be the 1st step to ruling another diagnosis (like Autism)in or out as possibilities. And check about sliding scale fees if your insurance won't cover mental health sessions. Arrangements of this sort are not uncommon.
      Another option would be to check with your company at work and see what they have in the way of an Employee Assistance Program. Often, companies with these contract with counselors to provide mental health services to their employees. These can be very little to no cost.
      Good luck, and keep blogging. I love reading what you have to say about religion & otherwise.

    3. I'll add to this, www.psychologytoday.com has a pretty good listing of councilors, including what insurances they take, their payment methods, and their philosophies of care. This is ESSENTIAL. I've seen poorly matched councilors destroy people's lives. Find someone who specializes in spectrum stuff, and obviously avoid religious based councilors in your area... talk about messy possibilities.

      I get the urge to hurt people that say "You don't have anything to be depressed about". Not a very useful thing for a doctor to say. Keep in mind though that MD's education on psych issues is a joke and a half... Even psychiatrists are pretty uneducated compared to real psychology backgrounds.

  2. As you may or may not know, I work with people who have Autism. I have access to lots of resources, evaluations and such that they use in diagnosing etc.
    I would be happy to go over a few of them with you if you are interested. This may offer you some insights and then you would have them as information when you do go see someone about it. Or it may show you that you have some characteristics, but you're not really on the spectrum. Most of us have some of the symptoms/behaviors, but they may also be related to your depression and trauma and personality in general. But, that's what you want to know isn't it?

    1. Good that you hit upon that one, the cause and effect cycle is so messy sometimes.

      I had the pleasure of working with a well educated psychiatrist who spent a lot of time working for Western Psych hospital in Pittsburgh on ADHD. The DSM IV used to say that ADD/ADHD only exists if it is not secondary to another disorder such as Depression. However, more often than not, she observed that it's a vicious cycle, that a person gets into a deep rooted depression because of the unreasonable stressors that having ADD/ADHD creates, and the lack of skills or ability to gain skills to handle these issues. I've been treated for depression and PTSD through the VA, and while a lot of it was rooted in some events in the military, once those were resolved, (EMDR does neet things) there were other underlying spectrum factors.

  3. Hey Sheldon. I'm pretty much convinced that I'm Autistic. I'm too busy now to get diagnosed. But if I do get diagnosed with it, it doesn't really change who I am. It just explains a WHOLE LOT which is good.

    As for you not posting about religion lately... your blog is called "Ramblings of Sheldon"! :-) So you'll never be off-topic! :-)

    Hope things get better for you! You'll be in my thoughts.

    1. Diagnosis is overrated. Learning strategies and understanding is soooo refreshing.

  4. When people talk about depression and medication not been necessary. I like to point out to them that they would never tell a diabetic to stop taking their insulin. It shuts them up pretty quickly. :)

  5. Q: "You have a job, insurance, and a house, what do you have to be depressed about?".

    A: I have to deal with tossers all day who ask stupid questions.

  6. It's not that "medication is not necessary". It's that for many, many people it is expensive and often ineffective with many nasty side effects. Just be cautious is all I am saying.

    Diabetes is a clearly defined, physical medical condition. Psychiatry is much less clearly a medical science.


  7. So I'm going to kick my perspective out here.

    Medication management is a bitch. If it's working great, but keep in mind with Cymbalta you can look at more organ damage than perhaps other issues.

    I would definitely find a way to pursue a full evaluation for the sake of identification of the right path to treatment if you feel treatment is necessary. For many, depression is an effect of not meshing well with the world due to other disorders.

    Here's other issues. Notice that most people on the spectrum have allergy problems, and there's a lot of variations that are very closely related to chemical imbalances caused by the system rejecting some things and having an overabundance in others, specifically in the digestive system. Sounds nuts, but so much goes on with the biology/chemistry of the "gut" that can cause you problems. Sometimes pain, exhaustion, the sensory issues, the thinking challenges, and all sorts of other things can be related to this, so with a medication like Cymbalta, you are treating symptoms not causes.

    Don't get me wrong. Emotional/mental stabilization is a high priority if you want to get on a better track with things. But sometimes between diet and medications focused on dealing with the issues not related to depression will take you a lot farther than just stemming off the depression. The latter effect should be a short term goal.

    Just some food for thought.

    Oh, and just curious, any patterns of milk intolerance, or eggs?

    1. No food allergies, can't take penicillin or codeine though....

      I really need through testing and to talk to a psychiatrist.


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