by Tanya Ruckstuhl-Valenti LICSW, MSW
Most of the time, I write a pretty positive blog here at the old WordPress site. I try not to cast aspersions on anyone’s character or promote theories of reality that increase our collective cortisol levels.
But once in a while, the urge to snark strikes and even a doggedly cheerful gal like me needs to vent.
I’m talking today about an evil symmetry that exists between the general public and the multinational corporations known as the pharmaceutical industry. Now big pharma should be a friend of mine. They pay me well to take provider surveys. They have both improved and even saved the lives of some of my clients who needed medication in order to get better. And you sure can’t beat an antibiotic when needed.
The problem is that for many people in our society, psychotropic medications plays to their basest fantasy of swallowing a pill to solve a complex condition. And guess what? The pharmaceutical industry actively promotes that fantasy, advertising before and after that look like depression turned to active engagement with life.
We human beings are multi-cellular creatures, and like all cells we seek to expend as little energy as possible to get the job done. In other words we are all just a bit lazy.
Corporations are like multi-cellular creatures without skin: there is no limit to their expansion. In medical terms we would consider the behavior of corporations to be quite like a cancerous tumor. They are insatiable, greedy creatures beholden to profits rather than social/environmental impact.
So what happens when you put lazy together with greedy? There is a cycle of consumption that feeds the corporate interest of expansion and the human tendency towards passivity.
Psychotropic medications work as stand-alone treatments in 20% of cases, but you will not find that statistic in the disclosure forms on your medication packs.
If you are suffering from any mental health condition, review your basic self care. Are you sleeping? Eating vegetables? Do you get exercise (walking totally counts) at least every other day? Do you have friends? Are you hugged daily? Are you living a life of honesty and integrity? Do you feel you are making some contribution to the world at large? If the answers to any of these questions are no, you must make some lifestyle changes if you want to feel well.
Medication may very well be a part of your recovery, but it will not save you.