A reader writes.....
Tramadol Correspondence"I been depressed ever since I was a child. I was always the melancholy, non-aggressive type child that kept mostly to himself. Coming from a Cuban family this was a liability. I was not sociable and outgoing like the rest of my family. I was labeled anti-social and snobbish. I would constantly criticize myself for not being like my siblings. I wanted so desperately to live my life, but I was so down that I enjoyed very little. As I grew older the depression got worse. I was put on Prozac at 22. It was how that drug made me feel that motivated me to attempt suicide. Heretofore it had always been something at the back of my mind. But I do believe that the Prozac altered my thinking in such a way that it became a very real possibility.
After that attempt several other attempts came along. I was put on just about every anti-depressant/amti-anxiolytic that any psychiatrist could think of. I read self-books and attended therapy sessions. My response was always that I am not a negative thinker, but I FEEL negative, down, and depressed despite what happens around me. It was an internal thing.
The anti-depressants worked for very short periods. My body quickly adapted to them, and I would go right back to being very depressed. My depression went from sadness and feelings to not feeling anything. I felt emotionally dead for years. It was during this time that the emotional death feeling led to exhaustion and sheer fatigue. On most days I felt like lying down on the floor out of exhaustion.
I got a severe cold one year, and couldn't get rid of a hacking cough. I was prescribed a cough suppressant with Vicodin. I had no idea what Vicodin was, but I needed to get rid of this cough.
After taking the cough syrup I felt so incredibly different! I felt alive for the first time in my life! It was amazing! The effect would last me the entire day!
My thinking cleared up to the point that I was able to do math calculations off the top of my head faster than ever before in my life. I had the desire to work, and excel myself. My body was finally inline with the positive thoughts that I had intellectually accepted, but could never physically express.
Unfortunately, the cough syrup ran out and I ended up being the same person I was before. However, I resolved to find another solution. I researched neurotransmitters, and found your site. I read about opiates and was so disappointed that something that could finally help me was labeled as the stuff of addicts.
My wife ended up in the hospital, and was prescribed Vicodin. She gave them to me since she didn't really need them. One pill professor, just one pill, gave me a mood boast that lasted over eight hours!
I would take one pill a day for three days, and then stop for another three days. My depression would return during the "off" days, but I would gladly have three good days instead of all bad days.
Since psychiatrists will not prescribe opiates as anti-depressants I went back to the psychiatrist when the Vicodin ran out. Did I try to score ot off the street? No. Did I try to hurt myself to get more? No. Did I down all thrity pills in a few days? No. I took what I needed and went from there.
The psychiatrist started on his usual anti-depressant combinations. After 6months I wasn't any better. I told him that I felt emotionally dead and tired. "Take this. Then come back in 6 weeks." Ok….but life keeps going during the 6 weeks. If I feel dead I have to wait another 6 weeks to feel otherwise?
There had to be an alternative. Last year I found one. I went to an online pharmacy and bought Ultram. This opiate affects me like Effexor, but provides opiate stimulation. It has changed my life. I am more positive at work. I am more productive. I am more loving and outgoing. Yet technically, I am a criminal. I should be on Prozac and depressed. I should not enjoy my life UNTIL science can come up with a legal solution. Really? I don't think so. I'm 32 years old now. Will a "cure" for my condition be found when I am near death after my entire quality of life has been spent?
I applaud you for being bold enough and smart enough to tell the world that depression is more than just serotonin or norephenephrine. Thank you for your research, and I look forward to you changing the medical view of depression."
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