Hi Lisa, thanks so much for your reply.
My perception of what "depression" is and the different ways it might be handled differs from my GP. (I have not consulted a psychiatrist for this medication). My Dr. represents the "medical model" very well in her view of "mental illness," whereas I question the validity of calling depression (or other mental disturbances) "illnesses." Clearly, my emotional state and the anxiety associated with long-term stress, sadness, and anger affected the set-point of my brain chemistry. And that is obviously a very significant change, and in those terms the Pristiq was helpful. But my conversations with my GP about the *actual* problem – what led to these changes in levels of serotonin for example – did not go very well. In my view, depression is more about meaning and hope, and you don't find that or experience that in taking a pill…in just serotonin and norepinephrine re-uptake in this case. Research literature points to a combination of therapy and medication in the treatment for depression, and I certainly agree with that as a basic recommendation.
I would not want others to follow my example, since I have not been in therapy and have dealt with my depression on my own. Connections with others are crucial: getting up every time you fall down without someone to lean on is, well…not recommended. I was (am) unsure about discussing my past and the things I've had to overcome in this forum – treating it like therapy – but in this final stage I felt it might be good to reach out about something less directly personal and specific to me.
Into Day 6 now of my taper….feeling strong.