Our expert says:
She may inded, from your description, be depressed. Surely she ought to hav the sense to see a shrink for a proper assessment and a discussion of the treatment options. And if she is a student, there should be a student counselling and student health service she can consult.
Firstly, whatever the shrink recommends, will be a recommendation, and she can discuss any concerns she might have about it, and will be monitored so that medication ( if that is what is used ) can be adjusted to suit her best. No competent shrink consders a zombie to be any better than a depressed person - but you both seem to be assuming that permanent zombie-hood is inevitable. And does not alcohol, anyway, create a zombie-like state, and apparently she doesn;'t mind that, even though it definitively worsens depression ( and should not be combined with antidepressants, if those come to be used, as this will make her much more of a zombie while undercutting the benefits of the ADs ).
The basis of a good plan is a proper assessment so you can all know what you are dealing with. Many depressions respond really well to particular forms of therapy like Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy ( CBT ) as good research has shown ( where as more wooly analytical methods are much less useful ).
Sometimes a person's thinking is so impaired by the chemical extent o a depression that they are not yet able to cope well with proper therapy, and they may need to use ADs at first to reduce the burden of the depression and render themselves more amenable to therapy.
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