Compare and Contrast: Disorders and Antidepressants

There are various disorders that affect people in a negative way and make them suffer both physically and mentally. With a help of treatment, most of these disorders are easy to cure. However, one of the disorders that are hard to subdue is depression. Even with the availability of various types of antidepressants in the market, only a few people have been able to eliminate depression completely. This research is conducted to help people to recover from depression. Most depressed people often see a psychiatrist, to whom they talk and who chooses the best antidepressant for their depression. People, who are currently experiencing depression or who are on their way to recovery, share their stories with other people, which sometimes proves to help them in the long run. This essay compares and contrasts two different authors, who shared with the world their experience of how they were challenged with depression, how depression affected their lives, and how they now view themselves.

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Two authors described depression and the way how they felt it. The first author, Jennifer Pastiloff, in her article “When I Went Off My Antidepressants” describes what her life was like, while taking antidepressants. She decided to start taking antidepressants after she realized that she was desperate and depressed. At that time, she worked in a restaurant as a waitress. After she had started taking antidepressants, her life took another turn. She became a motivational speaker traveling around the world and taking part in various workshops. At times, she felt herself like a fraud, since the turn in her life came after she started taking antidepressants. In order to see if her success was dependant on the antidepressants, she stopped taking them, and it was at that point that she realized that depression was real (Pastiloff, 2014). The other author, Angela Giles Patel (2014), in her article “Holding on My Journey with Antidepressants”, describes her life in regards to using antidepressants. She has been using antidepressants ever since she was a teenager. After she started taking them, the depression reduced, and she now has to find a pharmacist every time she moves to a new location. She vividly describes what happens if she fails to take her medication. This author has admitted depression and accepted the fact that if she does not take her antidepressants, then her day to day activities get disrupted. She experiences withdrawal symptoms and a changing mood that forces her to take her medicine.

These two texts are both referring to the fact that both authors suffered from depression. Each of the authors has a different interpretation of it, depending on the experience that they have faced individually. This interpretation challenges the commonly held view that depression as a disorder can be completely eliminated. Jennifer Pastiloff is responding to the idea that depression is real, that it does not care if you are rich or not, if you have a large following in social media or if you have a best-selling book, while Angela Giles Patel responds by saying that people have to accept that they may be not able to cope with the problem without antidepressants. It is normal to always be on antidepressants or even to have a therapist, who helps you to handle depression, or both. Pastiloff supports her idea that depression is real by sharing her experience after she decided to stop using antidepressants. The reason for doing this was to see if she could do without the antidepressants and to try to get pregnant. A few days after stopped taking antidepressants, she got pregnant. However, the pregnancy was ectopic. Throughout that time, she still went to the workshops, and it was during that time that she felt waves of depression. They were not as huge as those that she used to feel before, when she lost her father at a young age, but still the level of depression was high. Patel, on the other hand, talks about depression using a common view that something is wrong with the people, who were not able to manage their depression by taking antidepressants or visiting a therapist, or by both. People, who were able to fight depression with activities such as yoga or running, broadcast their experiences as those that should be followed. Patel thinks that this kind of thoughts is misleading. She says that these are the people, who imply that if you cannot get well, then something is wrong with you. From these two articles, it is evident that depression is an issue affecting many people and it needs to be the subject of discussion in order to help these people.

According to both authors, depression is a disorder that many people suffer from. They both use various ways to reinforce each other’s idea. Ultimately, what is in focus here is living with depression. Both Pastiloff and Patel conclude that antidepressants can greatly help with depression. Pastiloff uses examples from her life before and after antidepressants to illustrate the effect that antidepressants can have on someone’s life. Patel implies that her life cannot continue normally without antidepressants. It is shown in the article when she describes the time when she decided to stop the medication under the supervision of her therapist. She experienced withdrawal symptoms but managed to overcome them. Her life continued, but she felt danger while handling her depression. Each time it prompted her to voice her concerns to her therapist, who in turn placed her back to her medication. Similarly, Pastiloff and Patel rely on the past experiences to make their explanations on where the depression starts. To Pastiloff her depression started when her father passed on, while Patel’s depression was a result of coming from a dysfunctional home. It led to the thought that she would never need to take antidepressants after leaving her home, but it was not the case. It shows that depression occurs mostly as a result of the past experiences, mostly such as the death of a relative or a broken family.

According to both authors, antidepressants should be the solution for depressed people. While Pastiloff and Patel believe that antidepressants can change a person’s life, Patel additionally argues that in cases of severe depression, people cannot survive without antidepressants. She supports this argument by saying that although she does not enjoy taking the medication, she cannot cope without it. According to Goldberg all depression drugs have the potential to discontinue symptoms. Pastiloff follows Pastel’s argument about not doing without antidepressants by claiming that antidepressants changed her life to. Pastiloff, after she had started her medication, was able to stop working as a waitress in a restaurant (a job she had been doing for 12 years). She received a large following in social media, after which she started working as a guest speaker at various workshops around the world. Not only does Pastiloff agree with Patel’s assertion that severely depressed people cannot survive without the antidepressants, but Pastiloff also concludes that antidepressants do work. Pastiloff’s example is the way how her life changed. She even feels to be a fraud, since nothing was successful for her, when she was not using these antidepressants. From these two cases it is evident that taking antidepressants can be the ultimate treatment for the depressed people. They have changed one author’s life forever and for the other one they have become something that she cannot cope without.

Despite the fact that both authors agree that depression is a huge disorder, which affects many people, a major difference between these authors’ views is in their interpretation of the reason to stop taking the prescription. Although Patel and Pastiloff agree about depression and the effect of antidepressants on depression, their opinions regarding the decision to stop taking antidepressants completely differ. Patel challenges Pastiloff’s ideas by saying that people, who manage to live without antidepressants and broadcast their achievements as something that other people should follow, are promoting a misleading way. Pastiloff uses her example to convince her audience that living without antidepressants is manageable, however, a few displays of depression may remain, while Patel appeals to emotions in order to evoke a response to the idea that people, who rely on antidepressants have something wrong with them and considers this idea to be offensive for her audience. Pastiloff’s experience can be seen as similar to that of Lisovich, who was able to perform many tasks without her depression medicine. It shows that although both authors agree on various issues, they disagree on this major issue. Pastiloff believes that she can survive without the medication, but Patel cannot cope without it.

In conclusion, depression is a disorder that affects many people. In order to prevent the effects, triggered by depression, therapists prescribe antidepressants to their patients in order to help them to deal with the depression. From each of the above cases, it is clear that antidepressants have proved to change the life of the person, who was taking them. In the first author’s case, medication changed her life. After twelve years of working as a waitress, she switched to being a motivational speaker at various workshops in the world. Antidepressants made the author feel like a fraud, since without them she was not able to make a change in her life. In the case of the second author, who started taking antidepressants as a teenager, they were a part of her life and helped her to deal with depression that appeared as a result of living in a dysfunctional family. She cannot cope without antidepressants, because the burden is too much for her to handle.

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