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Question
Posted by: Purrsnikkitty | 2011-02-28

I need happy pills

Hi Doctor,

Im 30 white femaile from Jhb, all my life I have been unhappy, I cant say I had a happy childhood, no good memories there, now that I am an adult I am still unhappy. I even call myself names in the mirror I talk to myself and its hardly ever pleasant things. Lately I think that i am bipolar because of my mood swings and my change in personality. I dont want to go see a shrink and analazy my entire life, is it possible for my gp to prescribe mood stabilizers or some magic happy pills

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

In some of us, unhappiness can almost be a habit, just the way one looks at and interprets the world. It does sound as though you have inadvertently developed habits of negative thinking and self-denigration to a fine art.
Proper treatment depends on proper diagnosis, which depends on proper assessment. Otherwise, it's like going to a car equipment company and insisting that they replace the fan belt when your fan belt's fine, and its your carburettor that's up the spout.
If you have something like a definable Depression antidepressants might help, and if there's a bipolar disorder, mood stabilizers might help. If its the milder but longer duration Dysthymia, response to drugs is less clear, but psychotherapy can help.
I understand and actually agree with your wish not to engage in long-term navel gazing and analysis of your whole life, as this is actually both expensive and not useful. But specifically CBT, Cognitive-behaviour Therapy is a form of counselling that does not take very long, and is brisk and business like, with you being active not passive, and helps to reverse negative habits of thought and to find more efective ways of dealing with life. I suspect you could find it really helpful.

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2
Our users say:
Posted by: Tom | 2011-02-28

Depression and Bipolar disorders negativily affects the way you see yourself (low self-esteem etc), your past (no happy memories), present, future and the world around you. There is no shame in being diagnosed with a mental disorder as it is as common and manageable as other medical conditions such as as high blood pressure and diabetes. I suggest you go see a qualified psychiatrist for an assesment and to devise a treatment plan which will include medication and psychotherapy. They won''t analize your entire life as Cognitive Behavioural therapy has proven to be far more effective than analitical therapy. Hang in there.

Reply to Tom
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011-02-28

In some of us, unhappiness can almost be a habit, just the way one looks at and interprets the world. It does sound as though you have inadvertently developed habits of negative thinking and self-denigration to a fine art.
Proper treatment depends on proper diagnosis, which depends on proper assessment. Otherwise, it's like going to a car equipment company and insisting that they replace the fan belt when your fan belt's fine, and its your carburettor that's up the spout.
If you have something like a definable Depression antidepressants might help, and if there's a bipolar disorder, mood stabilizers might help. If its the milder but longer duration Dysthymia, response to drugs is less clear, but psychotherapy can help.
I understand and actually agree with your wish not to engage in long-term navel gazing and analysis of your whole life, as this is actually both expensive and not useful. But specifically CBT, Cognitive-behaviour Therapy is a form of counselling that does not take very long, and is brisk and business like, with you being active not passive, and helps to reverse negative habits of thought and to find more efective ways of dealing with life. I suspect you could find it really helpful.

Reply to cybershrink

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