I’m taking an independent study class this semester structured around readings on mental illness. It’s been really interesting since I’m getting to read articles and books that are already of interest to me. While the readings have been of academic nature up to this point, I’m reading a mass-marketed book right now, titled “Anatomy of An Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America” by Robert Whitaker (I love this book cover), the same guy that previously wrote “Mad in America.”
I’ve only read through the first chapter of this book, but it’s already begun to make me question a lot of things about my medicated life…..as in, if I had never received antidepressants, would I even have been given the diagnosis of being bipolar? Am I labeling some of my own behaviors to be “a part of an illness” when it’s just being human? As I’ve continued on to taking more and more medications, have I come to see myself as chronically ill, and thus incapable of having a ‘normal’ life? The book’s starting to make me wonder what’s really legitimate. It kind of feels like I’m having to question my own existence, and I’m actually a little nervous about how I’ll feel and what kind of questions I’ll have after reading this book. But in a way, I am excited to get through this journey.
I still have ways to go in this book, but it has certainly given me much to think about. I hope to report back on how rest of the book goes.