Raina Fisher

Through the Looking Glass

The bounty of faith in a doctor to cure what ails us arcs to the bottles which line the shelf of the cabinet.

We rear our brood to oblige in the blind belief of pills and rest in the laurels of a family physician; it does not dawn on us to poke the nest when he hands us an Rx to fill.

I have had my fair share of tears fall on the way to the car after an encounter with a flat-out rude doctor.

I ponder how a leper must feel and fume under my breath for him to treat me like a human being or not deal with me at all.

That cliff is as steep for this sort to scale as it is for some to strain not to dabble on the edge of their forte.

The trick is for them to adhere to the limits, yet time after time, the same lot will write a slew of scripts which fall out of their scope. Where did he score the wand to wave?

There is a rationale for a psychiatrist to diagnose clinical depression and to be the one to prescribe antidepressants.

All the while SSRI’s (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) can pull a person out of the depths of darkness, on the flip side of the coin can be a death trap which shoves them over the precipice and out into a bleak abyss.

To be in the throes of depression is on the other end of the spectrum from those who have a bout of the blues which may bog them down for a spell.

Sertraline, also known as Zoloft, can cause minute changes in the structure of the non-depressed brain.

It ruffles my feathers for my doctor to prod and pry on my mood, but then move with all due haste to turn a deaf ear as I spill out my worries to him.

The gist of my anxiety was from the incessant din of the hammer and the piles of sawdust that would whittle at my nerves over the better part of a year.

A hot Epsom salt bath and lavender oil will keep the cusp of a nervous breakdown at bay. It was a far cry from a call for a Prosaic fix.

Now, there is not a problem with these drugs per se. Quite the contrary; they can be a godsend. My gripe is in who doles them out, as the dose is notoriously tricky.

We carry a complete chemistry set on our shoulders — it’s with us day in and day out. Be that as it may, we need to get fussy with whom we give license to tinker with the pathways.

It’s ludicrous to load them up on a dozen different medications. Come what may, this is a plight that is prolific, and it will seal the fate of us all.

There is a breed of doctors who work hand in glove with the pharmaceutical reps to push pills on us in a trial-size pack, but then we start to stack our bottles in a crate.

There is an immense amount of stigma when it comes to mental health — fear from whispers will hinder a vast percentage of those who ought to glean this kind of care — this dread will cripple them.

The shame is to be in dire need of a therapist, yet too afraid of the backlash to seek one out.

In 12 years, my expert did not hint at an antidepression regime for me. There was a short stint in my 30s when my doctor had me on a daily trip to choke 16 pills down my gullet.

A score of opiates to take with the Duragesic patch to wear would be fierce foes for me to shake.

It is a blight that can ensnare the darkest part of the human psyche; it’s a bane which entombs the soul. The captives toss me in a cage — there were no bars, but I couldn’t flee — no lock, yet no one could set me free.

I’d end up in the corner with a butcher knife in my hand. The tip of the blade in my leg was just part of the downward spiral to shadow the jail break.

Yes, I hold a level of hostility for those who stray from their lane to toy with the outer limits in wild abandon.

So, if this is a scourge which rings true in your ear as a doctor, then to be sure it is high time for you to purge this menace from the masses.

The clinicians and charlatans may be in cahoots, yet this is not a fringe fling. It’s an outrage for a pharmacist to stuff four antidepressants in a solitary bag and not bat a lash.

And as for us, we let these empires rake in the dough with our silence. There is no high ground to lose if we come to a fork and turn down the same worn trail.

This is not merely a rant to spout on the ills which beset us when we hire the wrong doctor.

It is a word to the wise to rally and rail for one who will give us what we need and to dump him if he indulges our wants — the latter won’t do an ounce of good for the sake of our wellness.

The time grew nigh for me to pipe up or pay the piper. So, in a trial by fire, I had to be honest with me first to get to the crux, at the core of which is where I would find that trust.


RAINA FISHER is a child activist, writer and psychologist writing a memoir on parental alienation. She lives on County Home Road near Paris; her email address is rainafisher@hotmail.com.

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