First off, Welcome to HW! As far as recommendations, I really think you need to talk to a psychiatrist about that. Every person is different & we all respond differently to different medications. A psychiatrist could take into account your personal health, history of responding to medications & what medications you are on right now (psych meds, plus any other prescribed meds, OTC meds, or supplements). Psychiatric medications are so complicated, that it really isn't something that any of us could recommend. I do want to encourage you though that many people need to try several medications prior to finding one that works. If you've got one that's helping some, perhaps you just need to add a second medication (there are certain a/d's that are designed especially to work with other a/d's, rather than alone). Besides that, there are medications that can help with side-effects. I got that zombie-feeling too. I would sometimes even fall asleep for a few minutes on the job & my boss caught me two times. My psychiatrist was able to write me for a medication that promotes alertness to deal with that side effect. alertness medicines are not appropriate for everybody, but they can be helpful to many people. Insurance does not always cover them, so if your doctor does recommend something, be sure to check with your insurance plan first to see whether or not it would be covered (they are very expensive).
I just want to encourage you to stick with it. There really are meds out there that can help. I assume you are also seeing a counselor. If not, I would suggest you try adding counseling to see if that doesn't help as well. I know it's frustrating. It took me so long to put together a whole program that helped me (it wasn't just meds, it was counseling, lifestyle, nutrition, making an effort to reach out and make friends, changing behaviors, meditation, changing thoughts by repeating what I wanted to believe over & over again until I started to think it automatically [for example: I want to live. I don't want to die. I don't want to try suicide anymore. I don't like that idea at all], and, for me, also getting involved in a church so that I felt my life had meaning). It takes so much effort & I know for me it felt like I just didn't have it in me to put forth all the effort & energy required to change my life. But somehow I was able to pull it together (meds were part of that) & change my thoughts, then my behaviors, and eventually my feelings started to change as well. I still have a ways to go, but I have made a lot of progress over the past 18 months. A LOT of progress. I went from thinking about harming myself every single day for most of the day, to now almost never thinking about it and when I do it doesn't last for more than 10 seconds. I had no energy at all & now I am able to go to work, do a reasonable amount of housework & have a bit of a social life. I am happy about a third of the time, neutral about 50% of the time & still struggle with depression a little less than 1 out of 5 days. So things are getting better & I want to encourage you that it can be the same for you.
Just keep making positive choices. One day at a time, choose to get help, choose to take care of yourself, choose life and slowly but surely things will get better. I know it doesn't seem like it, but think of all you've accomplished when compared with your family. Your choices have led you where you are right now & they can lead you to an even happier place. I'm not saying everything will be perfect all the time, but it can be better. Please do talk with a psychiatrist about what options you might have that would help get the depression better under control (remember it can take up to 8 weeks for a med to really kick in) and also about the adverse side effects & whether there is anything you could take/do to help bring those under control as well. And of course, keep us posted. We love success stories & are happy to support you until you have one of your own to tell. :)
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