Xanax makes me a better mom. Because it's Xanax. Now fuck off.

As of this afternoon, 67 people have sent me this article: “Xanax Helps Me to be a Better Mom.  Half of them are pissed off at the article and want me to rant about it, and the other half are sending it to me because they want me to consider switching to the non-drug alternative mentioned in the article, which is apparently five minutes in the laundry room using the delicates setting on the dryer.  That’s not a masturbation joke, y’all.  That’s apparently what some people do instead of Xanax.  AND THAT’S FINE.

If you’re sad, do something to make yourself happy.  If you’re sick, do something to make yourself healthy.  If you have a life-threatening medical disorder then you see a doctor and sometimes you get prescribed medication to make you whole again.  Like xanax.  Or anti-depressants.  Or chemotherapy.  Whatever it takes to keep you breathing, y’all.

In short?  What-the-fuck-ever.  If spin cycles work for you then put a lock on the laundry room door and go to town.  If exercise, yoga and a sunlamp are all you need to be whole again then do that.  If you need multiple prescription drugs and behavioral therapy (and to hide under tables occasionally) then you might be me.  And that’s okay.

In fact, it’s fucking awesome.

537 thoughts on “Xanax makes me a better mom. Because it's Xanax. Now fuck off.

Read comments below or add one.

  1. Do what works for you! Screw what others think/say…always going to be someone dishing their opinions out there without being asked.

  2. What works for one/some might not work for others. I don’t know what’s so hard to understand about that.

  3. Tell me more about masturbating on the delicates cycle. And isn’t that kind of Nicholas Sparksy? I’m more of a heavy-duty cycle kind of masturbator. And my computer thinks I’m spelling masturbator wrong. And I’m not.

  4. Yup. So long as you’re not hurting anyone else, and ideally doing your best to avoid hurting yourself, then go for whatever helps you to get through the day.

  5. Or maybe a combination of all of the above… Couldn’t hurt. (And you won’t go blind.)

    (I’m in. ~ Jenny)

  6. Sweetie, whatever it takes to get you to the amazeballsness that is you carry on with it. Love

  7. Do they get in the dryer? I didn’t bother to read the article because I am not a mom and I don’t care about parenting, but I like the visual of mom’s climbing into the dryer and tumbling on gentle for a while.

  8. I have an employee who suffers from depression and occasionally tries to quit taking her medication – at her family’s urging. I told her it’s an illness just like any other. Diabetics need insulin – you need your medication.

  9. I love my little pill bottles for all the world. In fact, I am going to ask you to sign one in a church in Kansas City. My friend chain smokes like a chimney to make her work, but sadly won’t be around for her to sign her cigarette pack. Different strokes and all that noise.

    Just be healthy. Be you. Do what you can to make yourself get out of bed.

    Hugs to ya Jenny,


  10. Think of the electricity wastage! Also, the fact that some of us don’t have laundry rooms, and I’m not fitting in the closet with the washer/dryer.

  11. Geez. People are mean. They don’t live in your head. How do they know what you need. And clearly, these folks aren’t real Lawsbians, because if they were they’d understand and not by judgey-McJudgertons

  12. Your daughter thinks you rule, that’s the only opinion that matters. Whatever it takes for you to be the mom she deserves is absolutely the right decision.

  13. Sigh… hear, hear. Do what you need to do, and so will I, and so is it nobody’s damn business. How about “not passing judgment on others makes me a better person,” instead?

    And yes, you are fucking awesome. <3

  14. *moms. My prescription meds make me grammar wrong. It also makes me cut people off in traffic and then I feel really bad for the rest of the day about it.

  15. Hiding under tables is so last year. Closets are where it’s at, yo. Seriously, though. Do what you need to do to keep you healthy… Because, and I think i can speak for much of the intarwubs here… we love you and we want you to be healthy, basically. <3

  16. I also agree. You are fucking awesome, and that is what tables are for anyway…and bathrooms, and wigs.

  17. Do what makes YOU feel whole again. Not what makes OTHER PEOPLE feel whole. We are all different, and what works for one might not work for another. Why can’t people understand that?

  18. I will keep my anit-depressents. They are cheaper then a washing machine and the washing machine will only make me more depressed. Also People better start looking under tables there are a lot of us hiding and we have access to the knives on the table.

  19. I take an antidepressant….no spin cycle will help the depression….no dryer cycle either….it keeps me from crying 24/7 and barely keeps me from hiding under the bed….(the table is too bright)….each infividual has to do what’s right for their body/sanity….

  20. I just wanted to say that I fucking love you for saying things that I think in my head.

  21. I love you and you ARE fucking awesome…actually to be honest when I am feeling really down and just need to “get away” I come to your blog and read older post and I sit here and laugh until I cry and my husband will be like WHAT THE HELL EMILY….and that’s ok too! The first thing I ever seen of yours was about Beyonce. Knock knock motherfucker!~

  22. You know what? If the simple act of taking your medication doesn’t make you go kill people, I probably don’t care what drugs you’re on. It isn’t my business. In fact, I’m glad that you HAVE medication to be on, should you need it. A lot of people who need it can’t get it.

    In my house (okay, in my head, it hasn’t really caught on), we use the portmanteau “Fuckawesome.”

  23. Have I told you recently that I love you? Dory from Nemo is my guru and her “Just Keep Swimming” is my mantra. I also try to speak whale but my husband tells me to shoosh. But whatever works Jenny, whatever works xxx

  24. When I was on an antidepressant, I always felt weird about talking about it, but now I talk about it all the time because it kept me alive to talk about it. It’s weird how stigma goes away when you live to talk about it.

  25. Absofuckinglutely! Quasi-sane and breathing is enough somedays and I say fight for it how ever you have to. Keep on keepin’ on lady! 🙂

  26. I agree! I’ve been on anti-depressants since I had my second child and that is what works for me. The most important thing for me was for my kids to see their mom happy and enjoy time with them. Different things work for different people and medication works for me. No one should judge anyone else.

  27. I’ve been on antidepressants since last August and I am a whole new fucking person. My temper is under control, I’m much less irritable, my anxiety doesn’t get out of hand, I don’t have panic attacks or start shaking over financial issues, it has been a life changer. I’ve done things since I got on meds that I wouldn’t have believed I’d be able to do before I got on them – I started a blog, I opened an etsy shop, I’ve been seriously thinking about what I need to do to get out of a toxic living environment. I can talk to people without freaking out I said something wrong or they must hate me. I get out of the house on a regular basis – sometimes without makeup! And it’s consistent in a way that yoga or breathing exercises or things I have to force myself to do never were.

    So to anyone who thinks I should try something else? I have tried other things. Nothing’s worked quite like gathering the courage to ask my doctor to prescribe me antidepressants. And I am totally cool with that.

  28. Yes Jenny, You! Are! Awesome! I’m not much with words although a million things swim around my not so normal mind that I want to say to you. So just know you are awesome and take everything positive you can from my short but full of a thousand words message!
    Keep being you!

  29. 1. I must read that article.

    2. Xanax DOES make me a better mom. As well as celexa. Without these and my other meds for thyroid and vitamin D deficiency there is no spin cycle fast enough to make me function as a human much less a mom.

    Kudos to you and happy pills! There is nothing wrong with doing what we need to do to be whole!

  30. Agreed regarding wtf ever 🙂 xanex, coffee, wine, blogging – not in all that order – maybe some days and Sex.

  31. I’m going to build you a hat that’s a table. Then you can go pretty much anywhere you want. Except maybe through doors that aren’t wide enough for a table.

  32. I feel bad for my family when I’m not medicated. And the world. If someone tried to take my meds away, I’d probably kill them. And by kill them, I mean “cry in the bathroom until someone brought me some meds.”

  33. Regardless if people agree or disagree with the article the ‘Put on your own oxygen mask first’ is advice each of us need to take a bit more. But I have to agree with you, ‘What-the-fuck-ever’ has a nicer ring to it. I see a new t-shirt in your future.

  34. SO TRUE! I always get told I should try more mindfulness, yoga, exercise and gluten-free eating for my bipolar disorder. Thanks, but no thanks. I have a rather healthy trust in my psychiatrist who is awesome and only prescribes what she needs to. So I need my Lithium and Depakote, occasional Valium and other drugs. AND??? If that makes me productive, healthy and overall just feel better as “myself” then everybody else can screw themselves. Unless someone has had the same mental illness in the same intensity and is in exactly the same circumstances I don’t listen to any of them. Unless my psychiatrist says so. 😉
    But sex is always great regardless. 🙂

  35. I’m more inclined to go with doctor-monitored treatment, and not the “article of the day” from people who haven’t made medicine their career. Keep rockin’ your xanax, lady.

  36. I take birth control to help my depression. I pretty much worship the Nuva goddess. Of course, I still occasionally hide in the bathtub with a book for escapism for hours on end—whatever keeps your boat afloat!

  37. Doctor: And what do you think this anti-depressant does for you?
    Me: It keeps my head out of the oven.

    I love you, Jenny. That’s the truth. Depression lies.

  38. I can’t hide under the table as the dog is usually already there stock piling tennis balls but I find the back of the closet works just fine… and if it doesn’t I add a little vodka

  39. i think it’s great there are drugs today to help people with mental illness. why not. from personal experience though, i believe people (and/or their doctors) need to stay a bit more switched on about it, as their individual needs can change, there are new, better drugs and our bodies simply aren’t always lifelong ‘ok’ with taking some of them.
    other people telling you what drug you should take or not take is never ok. they can FO , indeed.

  40. Yeah, some people just need to shut the hell up. They are *probably* trying to be helpful, but you might need to follow my advice below and call them twatwaffles. That might make you feel better. Maybe not quite as good as the xanax though.

  41. I have a Pavlovian response to the word “should.” “Fuck off, bless your heart” is the response. Because I’m a fucking lady. And for some reason it always reminds me of a quote by the dude who plays Q on Star Trek “If my aunt had balls, she’d be my uncle.” I”m not sure why, but there it is.

  42. That’s your opinion. But if you actually have ever used prescription anti-depressants, you could list all the negative side affects that come with it… clinched jaw, restless leg syndrome, migraines, hyperactivity… the list goes on. A lot of side affects that come with the usage of anti-depressants also come with the usage of the street drug MDMA, also known as molly. It’s a club drug. It makes you happy. It makes you dance. It makes you over think things, it makes your legs shaking when you want to rest, it makes your jaw clinch. If you actually research into both prescription anti-depressants and MDMA, the basic chemical compound is the same. The molecule is the same. It is essentially the same thing, but the prescription is a cleaner cut. People who do MDMA know that it’s a bad idea to hold a child or small animal while on the drug (or any drug for that matter) because it can seep out of your skin and rub on to the person you are next to, commonly called contact high. So if MDMA and prescription anti-depressants are basically the same thing, than do you really think it is a good idea to give anti-depressants to mothers holding infants…..?

    (I’m leaving your comment here because everyone is allowed to have their opinion. That being said, I don’t believe there is any medical study in existence to back up anything you said here and the physicians commenting afterward agree with me. Also, MDMA is ecstasy, a drug that massively floods you temporarily with seratonin and causes hallucinations. Anyone who has ever taken ecstasy can tell you that it is NOTHING like xanax or anti-depressants. Ecstasy makes you want to dance uncontrollably and have sex. Xanax makes your panic attacks stop so you don’t have to hide in the bathroom of the grocery store. Also, you’re not supposed to hold small animals while on ecstasy because it’s an illegal drug that makes you super unaware of how much you’re squeezing things because you get incredibly tactile. You also aren’t supposed to get on the roof when you’re on PCP because you think you can fly. Let me assure you, medically prescribed anti-depressants and xanax are nothing like ecstasy. ~ Jenny)

  43. Hey, whatever floats your boat, that’s what I like to say.
    Meh, I have a candy dish full of Ativan. The family knows to LEAVE MOMMY’S CANDY ALONE!!

    Rock on, dolly.

  44. hiding under tables and crying for a few hours while rocking myself back and forth and reminding myself to talk to my doctor about my mood swings and medication has helped me.
    also, paxil. paxil is great.

  45. I needed this today. I started antidepressants 2 days ago and I’m still skeptical about my decision. This helps me realize I have a problem and treating the problem is the right thing to do.

  46. My daughter has Trichotillomania, what makes me a better mom is anything I can do to educate myself, herself and anyone else who questions my daughter’s illness. And if she wanted to hide under a table I’ll crawl in with her and bring juice boxes and oreos dammit.

  47. Everyone is different use what works for you! After years of trying alternative methods and almost losing my mind Xanax works for me!

  48. I don’t know about you guys, but Lexapro and Buspar help me become a better PERSON. Anyone that doesn’t understand that I have a chemical imbalance can fuck themselves sideways. The last time I ran out of antidepressants, I almost started hallucinating. True story.

  49. Tell them to get a life & stay out of yours. I think you are amazing and have helped me cope with my own anxiety & depression. So THANK YOU! Seriously, thank you. For being honest, for being real, for not holding back, and especially for saying its ok to just be “me”.

  50. “Z” to the “o” to the “l” to the “o” to the “f” to the “f” is what keeps me afloat around here and keeps me from killing my co-workers.
    Whatever, people. Do what you gotta do to keep this little world spinning round!

  51. I now some people who really should consider antidepressants. I don’t know what the hang up is.

  52. Hell yea!

    If I didn’t get my three prescription meds (from the psychiatrist) and go to an IOP therapy clinic for some DBT and counseling I wouldn’t be celebrating a WHOLE FREAKING YEAR WITHOUT SELF HARMING (on march 16!!) You have NO IDEA how MUCH BETTER I feel after 13 years of battling this demon. I still have awful days, but this combination of pills and drs is what had worked best for me.

  53. I’m one of those multiple-prescription-drug-needers. And I’m pretty open about it. I’ve tried the yoga and the sunlamps and this is what works for me. My aunt saw me popping a Klonopin once and was like “Sweetie, No.” So I was all, “Listen Aunt Martha, I did not judge you when you cried because someone taped over your tape of the last episode of Golden Girls and you shall not judge me for this.”

    And then I found her the last episode of Golden Girls online.

  54. LOL – I’m trying to decide if I can wean myself off sleeping pills. I thought about giving up caffeine but WTF – that would really be crazy.

  55. Jenny,

    After YEARS of intense exercise and seeing a nutritionist my doctor told me he believes that the only thing that will help my medical issues is bariatric surgery. I got a second opinion, and another, and another and they all agree. The thing is I’ve been on the fence about it because of believing I “should be able to _________”. This post made me cry, because it is so true. I need to do what *I* need to do to be whole, and I need to do it bravely and without fear because what matters is helping myself be well…whatever that means for me.
    Thank you for this. I appreciate you. I needed this so much.

  56. I’m not even depressed and I’m now giving serious consideration to riding the spin cycle.

  57. Definitely do what works for you. My son was diagnosed with anxiety disorder and Asperger’s Syndrome. His anxiety attacks would come on nearly instantly about anything. (8 year olds shouldn’t panic that a supermassive black hole was going to destroy humanity.) When his panic attacks hit, there was no reasoning with him. You just had to get him to a safe place so he could ride it out.

    When the doctor prescribed medicine, I was hesitant, but it has helped him tremendously. The anxiety attacks don’t hit as fast or as hard.

    I’m sure some folks would tell me how I shouldn’t use meds on my son and should just tell him to “calm down.” These folks don’t know anything about panic attacks. Saying “calm down” to someone having a panic attack is just as helpful as saying “flap your arms” is in helping someone fly.

  58. Nothing wrong with hiding under a table. You can pretend it’s a fort. Like JRose, my first thought was “in the dryer” and I flashed back to the image of Hunter S. Thomcat chilling in the dryer, as always, ahead of the curve.

  59. whatever it takes a person to get through the day i completely support. if all it takes is 15 minutes in a laundry room then yay for you. but if it take medication (whether its 1 or 5), therapy, hiding under a table, or retreating to a dark bedroom for a day or two then do what you have to do and dont let anyone make you question your methods.

  60. Knit!! It can be more expense than Xanax but end the end you get a scarf/hat/sweater/penis warmer/something to hide your Xanax bottle.
    It got me through depression! I made penis warmers. They are fun and you can’t help but laugh at the finished product. Especially when at the time I didn’t have a penis owner to give it too.
    Yeah! 🙂 penis

  61. Hey, I have Xanax in my purse and Celexa in my bathroom. And wine in the fridge. I’m a great mom!

    It reminds me of something that set me off a couple of weeks ago – when (well-meaning) people ask me during a depressive episode, “Have you prayed about it?” I’m a Christian and very active in my church. Do you think I haven’t thought of that?!?!? Yes, I prayed and God gave me a doctor who wrote a prescription. Thankyouverymuch.

  62. I am always inexplicably amazed at the number of people who struggle to understand that what works for one does not necessarily work for another, and while it’s nice to share what works it is a disservice to humanity to say everything else is crap just because it didn’t work for you. Like you said, do whatever you need to be as happy and healthy as possible.

  63. I love the fact that you are there for everyone while managing to keep yourself healthy. I personally buy batteries at Sam’s so I don’t run out, make sure I’m home one day during the week for Anderson and keep dark chocolate in the house. If that combo didn’t work, I would find something that did. People just need to mind their own beeswax and remember to “do you” (OK, that sounds like a masturbation joke…but whatever)

  64. Be who you are and do what works for you. Bravo! (what’s another word for bravo? because now I sound like a snooty prick)

  65. I’m a Vali girl myself, and that’s how I get out the door in the morning. So whatever works. Although I do like the occasional ride on the dryer, but that’s not for medicinal purposes. Fuck them, you’re fabulous.

  66. I agree with you 100%. The stigma of antidepressants need to stop. If you don’t want to take them, that’s fine, but people should start realizing that major depression is mostly _chemical_ imbalance in the brain, not so often an energy knot in your prana. (Although I am of the yoga and meditation persuasion myself).

  67. I talked about my Prozac use loudly and frequently. It mortified my mother. And I love my mother. But fuck her. It helped me so freaking much. I went from hiding from my kids in the bathroom crying all day to being a better happier person. I have been “Prozac free” for almost three months, which is awesome, but if I ever need it again I will once again loudly and frequently talk about it.

  68. Here here for that!
    I call my celexa my “happy pills” nobody would want to see what I’m like without them. They make me more happy than any delicate cycle could!
    Do what works for you!!
    Love you for saying that!

  69. Xanax makes me a better mom, because it makes me a better me. Screw everyone who judges me for it. 🙂

  70. Thank you. I think meds may have saved my life, and I can only pray to the drug gods that my kid gets on some in time. What-the-fuck-ever indeed!

  71. Hell yea!…it’s cliche, but you can’t judge someone until you walk in their shoes…or live their life…etc.

  72. I thought you hid in your huge bathroom, not under tables? LOL

    And you know, whatever works. But if you TRULY need medication, not taking it is putting your life and the lives of everyone around you in danger.

    PS: Xanax did NOTHING for me and Wellbutrin gave me anxiety attacks.

  73. I rely on my meds to be able to parent at all. 99% of my family believe in mind over matter and natural approaches…. What they don’t know is how much I hide. With out my daily meds I am unable to be a mom let alone function in any ‘normal’ way. I embrace my crazy and it is who I am…. But I do not miss my meds, ever.

  74. I love the way every comment on those articles passes judgment on people’s medical problems without knowing their actual medical history.

    Become informed, and do what works best for you. Let other people do what works best for them. Move along. Sheesh.

    (Not you, Jenny. It’s a generic “you.”)

  75. I admire the hell out of you for this. Too many people are ashamed to admit to their mental health issues, and suffer alone, in silence, or worse. It takes balls to admit you have a problem and then to actually DO something about it. GOOD FOR YOU.

  76. Agreed. Just read the article and I didn’t really like it. It was very judge-y. It implied that if you take medication, then you’re taking the easy way out. What the fuck? Are there people who would rather just pop a pill? Of course. But to imply that anyone who takes medication is taking the easy way out is insulting and kind of dangerous. Are the people who eat super healthy, work out all the time and still need cholesterol medication to lower their cholesterol to safe levels taking the easy way out?

    P.S. I’m lucky enough not to suffer from depression or anxiety but I know enough people that do and pisses me off when anyone implies that what my friends/family go through to keep themselves healthy is taking the easy way out like the article implies. It’s depression and anxiety. There is no easy way out.

    P.P.S. Jenny, as always, you’re awesome.

  77. I am with you on this Jenny. I have been around people with depression and I am pretty certain if 5 minutes in a laundry room did it, they would be all over it like white on rice. The only thing I am not happy with is the implication that everyone needs to try to not be medicated. Well who wouldn’t love to not have to take a pill to be happy? But if that pill is what keeps you happy, then TAKE IT. Better medicated and happy than unmedicated and dead.

  78. good for you. people who dont need them maybe can be fine without them. what will make you the best mom is being able to be there when your kid needs you.

  79. I wonder what would carry the greater stigma: me continuing on my medication, or taking a ride to Happy Fun Town at the neighborhood laundromat?

  80. You’re book, blog, YOU, helped me realize that I am not alone in this world of misfit toys. Also, they make me laugh. Which helps the cymbalta, Ativan, and amitriptyline work to keep my crazy ass held together. There isn’t a dryer setting in the world that could control my bipolar head. And the person who was told to go gluten free, I have celiac, and gluten free hasn’t helped my depression at all. Keep the laughter coming.

  81. I just want to thank you for repeatedly advocating for awareness of psychological diseases/disorders/wtf-ever they’re called. I suffer from depression and anxiety and your blatant, open acceptance of your own humanity has made it a million times easier for me to accept my humanity and to reach out and find the help I need to keep breathing…what-the-fuck-ever that combination of things is for me.
    Thank you!!

  82. I’m so falling in love with you in a non-lesbian way. Me, xanax is too hard core, like I would probably literally fly and bust out in Mary Poppins tunes when really I just crapped myself and drooled all over the place like I was Pavlov’s Dog and was just really happy about it. I do take Motrin like it’s a crack addiction to try to prevent migraines, and I do a lot of reading blogs like yours for sanity purposes (sometimes while wearing sunglasses because of the sleep deprived, banshee kid squeal induced migraines).

  83. Sometimes the most interesting bits of philosophy are written on the undersides of tables. (and some REALLY colorful bits of chewing gum that you can use to make pretty pictures). I say go for it. And that you’re fucking awesome. AND that by reading your stuff I’m now on medication that makes me a much happier (if not less sarcastic) person, so thanks for that.

  84. Everybody’s methods are different and while meds might not be for everyone they certainly work for those who need them and there isn’t an ounce of shame in that!

  85. Things that make me a better mom:
    1.) Booze
    2.) Weed (I live in Colorado, it’s now legal here)
    3.) Birth Control
    So basically, I think there IS better living through chemistry.

    What I judge others for doing to be a better mom:
    1.) NOTHING

    Do yo’ thang, Mama. Whatever it takes to make it through the day. The only advice I have is: if you are going to hide under the table after smoking pot, make sure you bring your munchies with you.

  86. Jenny, you are awesome. I totally agree, take whatever YOU personally need to make yourself well, and to hell with whatever judgmental articles come out against what works for you.

  87. I totally hate to be this asshole, but how do we want to handle it if the way a person makes themselves feel better is by writing, sending, or otherwise promoting that the way other people are making themselves better isn’t right and should be something else? You know what — you’re right. Fuck those people, they’re on their own.

  88. Since I don’t like to go into the basement due to the resident spiders (which might result in a mini stroke, or possibly worse), I tend to use the Xanax/shower massage combo myself. I see nothing wrong with Xanax. As long as it’s not being overused, it is a perfectly acceptable form of keeping any parent’s sanity intact these days. 🙂

  89. I actually need drugs. I tried going the drug-free route and found myself randomly spewing horrible shit from my mouth like my dad did (who should be medicated but isn’t).
    I admit, mental illness is a fucking bitch. What works for me wouldn’t work for someone else. Because they aren’t me with my own special blend of fucking nuts!

    And the only time I spend 5 minutes in the laundry room, is to sit on the dryer to get some extra warmth…it’s fucking cold and I am never warm enough, so hugging the dryer (and hiding from the husband and kid) is a wonderful 5 minute break. But it’s not fixing the crazy in my head.

  90. I love Xanax. It’s the only thing that keeps me from crawling out of my skin and trust me, I’ve tried holistic yoga in the laundry room while chanting my face off.

  91. I’m not on antidepressants any more but I still have emergency Xanax my doctor prescribes once a year. Just knowing I have it if I need it usually helps. Thanks for being our voice, Jenny. With all the people yelling about how society is overmedicated (maybe we’re just more open about our problems, which is a GOOD thing) it’s so nice to have a rallying point. Your blog is that for me.

    Also, comment #70 is hurtful and a lie. I think depression wrote it.

  92. Thank you SO very very much for this!!!

    I had to be put on a low dose of Zoloft last week because my constant panic attacks were stressing out my baby (I’m 6 months pregnant.) I’ve had numerous people tell me how awful it is that I’m taking it and even tell me to switch doctors. People were trying to make me feel guilty for needing the meds. Like I was too weak…

    But you know what? After only one week, my panic attacks and contractions are much fewer and farther between. I know there are some risks involved with taking the medication, but without it, I KNOW that my baby is getting stressed out, and it is my job as a mother to provide the healthiest womb I can. If that means I have to take a bit of something to help, then so be it!!!

    Thank you so much for being a voice and standing up for people, no matter what they need to be happy! You rock and I adore you. Thank you so so so much.

  93. Preach it, sister!
    I’ve totally yelled at people, “Quit judging me just because what I need to cope is different that what you need!”

    As always, you rock!

  94. Wait it’s not normal to hide under the table. Damn I’m doing it wrong then.

    I really can’t stand people who don’t deal with depression of some form that try to tell others how best to treat themselves. Dumb tarts.

  95. People need to mind their own business. What
    works for one may or may not work for another.
    I have run into this BS more than once. You keep
    Doing what works for you. I will not be giving up
    my Xanax any time soon. The alternative sucks!

  96. Wow. I cannot even believe people are the way they are. Rock on with your bad self and whatever it takes to get through the day. I much prefer someone to take a happy pill (or several) so they can cope than a lot of other options. I take a xanax as I need one and move on. As long as your shit is managed, it’s no one’s business. Hugs to you as always. And really, Chicago only? Milwaukee could stand for some love, just sayin’ 😉

  97. Jenny, you rock. I wouldn’t be alive without multiple meds, either, including the much maligned xanax…even if I prefer hiding under the covers to hiding under tables…

  98. I fully agree that not every drug works for every person. Xanax isn’t for everyone, some people need it, some people don’t, some people abuse it, but there should be a relationship between said person and their doctor and their pharmacist to make sure that they are taking the drugs they need to be taking and no more and no less. Some people need a Claritin every day to function like a normal person. Some people need Lipitor every day to function like a normal person. Some people need Xanax every day to function like a normal person. I’m not sure you can write a prescription for hiding under the table, but if you could and that was what was needed then that is exactly what should happen. Healthcare professionals should be here to help people be the best and healthiest they can be, so that they can function, and spend time with their families for as long as possible. Xanax might make many moms better and many moms worse, but it shouldn’t be discounted just because some people abuse it. (I would also like to note that neither Claritin nor Lipitor are recognized by Firefox’s spell check as being real words, but Xanax is. What does that say about Firefox? Hmm?)

  99. Kudos AND a slow clap! I personally stopped listening the ya-hoos and lookey loos a long time ago. I also highly recommend the combination of pills and alcohol…works really well for me!

  100. Oh man, I wish sitting on the dryer for a few minutes would fix the chemical imbalance that is responsible for my mental illness. And then I’d like to hear people on the internet tell me how they know that so many other things not prescription related will cure me.

    I used to be convinced that I could cure myself without giving into the “drugs.” And then I hit bottom and realized it was either that or die. And now I have my drugs and I feel human. Sometimes I look back at all of the things I missed because of or were ruined by depression and anxiety, and I can’t help but think how different things would be if I had sought help earlier. But, that’s not productive… and neither is the internet diagnosing/offering treatment plans for illnesses that really are life-or-death.

    Do what works for you, people!

  101. This is a lesson I have only learned in the past year, and am still coming to terms with the face that it’s ok to be on multiple meds. And in therapy. And to hide under tables/in the bathroom/in the closet when needed. Part of that lesson was learned from you. Without getting into the details, I am a life you have saved in the most literal way. And through one of your book signings, I met a “soul mate” of a friend who gets me in the way I need the most. She has helped me through so much, and I wouldn’t be here without her, and without you. So thank you, for my life.

  102. By the way, the stuff the troll named “Prescription” said? All complete fabrications, either deliberate or unknowing on the part of the poster. MDMA is absolutely nothing like Xanax, or Paxil, or Prozac, or whatever-the-fuck other medication you might take. That’s easy enough to see just by looking at the molecules themselves. Xanax has none of the side-effects the poster listed. The very idea of a “contact high” is pseudoscience at best and outright bullshit at worst — demonstrated to be a complete farce when people under controlled conditions “got high” when touching a person who had taken a placebo and was acting.

    You know all of this, of course, being somebody who already takes Xanax. I wish the troll could be cured of his or her misinformation, but no doubt it’s just some idiot Scientologist who wants to “audit” all of us.

  103. You should do whatever gets your through the day. But from personal experience (as the kid), try to never get to the place where you’re asking your kid to “get mommy the pink pill,” then get a “sleepy spell” for the rest of the day… that doesn’t make you a better mom.

  104. The commenter who said anti-depressants and MDMA are basically the same thing needs to get his or her head examined. Or turn in the medical degree they got online. As a physician that is just about the biggest crock of bull I’ve ever read on the Internet. Seriously, that’s a joke, right?

  105. These are people who make everything into a religion and tell you what to do so THEY CAN BE RIGHT! Which they aren’t but they know they are right because it’s in their scripture; you know, the bible or Mother Earth News or something. I just admire you for everything you do and every way yo manage to keep doing. <3

  106. Judgers are why there has been a stigma surrounding depression and telling your doctor and getting help and medication for years. We don’t need stigma, we need to do what it takes without hiding (unless hiding – as in under tables – is part of what we need of course). We need the strength to “Never Give Up”. We need to be able to hold our heads high no matter what meds or therapies we use to be better. Bravo for saying What-the-fuck-ever!

  107. And this post here is just one more reason Jenny is one of my mostest favoritest human beings on the planet ever!!!


  108. This makes me think of a picture someone posted on facebook yesterday… “12 foods that are scientifically proven to improve asthma”. It went on to say that eating these 12 foods can improve asthma to the point of not needing medications or rescue inhalers.
    Um, yeah, too bad I’m allergic to 10 of those 12 foods. Eating them WILL NOT improve my breathing. but thanks anyway.
    My point is that people need to do what works for them. And in my case, that means taking what amounts to a small pharmacy of meds everyday to deal with the shit hand I was dealt when it came to my health.

    I am more than happy to let someone else use Chinese herbs, or only organic foods, or whatever to deal with their issues, and I won’t try to convince them that taking pharmaceuticals is better. So I would appreciate it if they would be kind enough to do me the same favor, and not try to convince me that their way is better.

  109. That article irritated me. There’s a huge difference between being on multiple medications because of something preventable, and being on something to regulate your psychological well being. If you are taking a pill because of symptoms caused by another pill, it’s time to rethink it. I know people who only eat microwaved, prepackaged foods, full of sodium and other delicious things, that have to take blood pressure meds, and prescription heartburn meds, and something for their type 2 diabetes, and their chronic pain condition. Their doctor has never simply gone “Holy shit, do you realize you eat horridly, and never exercise?” Instead its “heres another pill”. THAT is unacceptable. If your blood pressure meds (taken because of your diet) cause you to be depressed, there is a solution. Eat better, lower your blood pressure, get off the meds.

    Now, if we find out that Cows milk causes actual issues with the physiology of the brain, that’s a different story. Then we can say “don’t drink cows milk, now you’re better”, but it’s not that simple. The attack on mental health in this country is insane, you’re damned if you take a pill, and you’re damned if you don’t. Everyone freaks out when another person loses their battle and does something horrible, like Sandy Hook, and then we go back to criticizing everything except the way we treat mental illness.

    ANYWAY. Now that I’m done with my rant. YOU ROCK! And my boyfriend sympathizes with Victor, I may not bring home giant metal chickens and taxidermy, but my skills at collecting living bugs and reptiles is close to causing him a minor meltdown.

  110. Word. My Xanax has gotten me through a lot…..last thing being kidney cancer. Prozac got me by for many years. You do what you believe in. Western meds, Eastern meds…like you said, whatever works.

  111. I just love you for being you and for telling everyone it’s ok to be me, even when being me kinda sucks and requires medical supervision and prescription drugs. Thank you so much. I needed this today

  112. If your liver or heart or something wasnt working properly, no one would look at you twice for taking medication. But when the problem is your brain you are supposed to be feel guilty about it? Please! Do what it takes to keep yourself healthy and sane. It is no ones business but yours

  113. I just weaned off my Prozac (per doctor’s orders, not like, for a fun psychotic experiment) so we can try to get pregnant again. Gotta say, I love my prozac. I miss my prozac. I can breathe deeply and visualize peaceful thoughts all day long, and I will still be 10 times the spaz I am on my happy pills. Also, on my happy pills, I don’t need to spend all day breathing deeply and visualizing. We each do what we gotta do, and I’m glad this is a judgey-free zone. Thanks for giving us spazzes a place to feel safe =)

  114. Honestly if all you need is five minutes alone in the laundry room then nope you probably don’t need drugs. I say this as someone who needs to go back on the lexapro to silence that voice in my head that tells me to cut my skin with scissors.
    I don’t understand what the point of the article was. Was it anti medicine, but vague enough to look neutral? I couldn’t tell.

  115. Lexapro makes me a better mom, wife, friend, pet owner, person….whatever works, baby. Whatever works.

  116. You ARE awesome! Your humor is amazing and means so much to so many. Have an awesome week (w/your drugs/under the table/or on the dryer)!

  117. Just went and read that article–and the god-awful comments. Had to run back here to feel better–those people suck. yipes.

  118. Whatever the f— works. I WISH it was doing laundry for me, but its not, and if the collective “you” (not you specifically Jenny) don’t like it, then prepare for me to punch you in the throat. As soon as I get out from under my table.

  119. I guess it says something about me that I read that as ‘Xmas makes me a better mom…’. Although, Xmas and moms *ARE* pretty damn cool (most of the time, except when you’ve got a bad mom or Xmas sucks in your house), so, I guess it could work…or not. I don’t know what I’m saying anymore. It’s all blurry words. I need some xanax or xmas.

  120. I’m sorry, sweetie. I choose to believe that most people have the best of intentions, including the people who sent you this article. The truth is that it’s between you and your doctor. And you don’t have to justify it to anyone else. I thought the article was more a way of saying ‘we’re telling the truth – this happens and we’re not ashamed.’ If a mother needs a Xanax to get through her day, it’s fine. It may not be what some people would call normal or ideal, but most of us deal with something that makes us different. No one could ever question your love for your daughter or your commitment to being there for her in all ways. If a pill helps you do that, that’s fine and it’s fine for you to say so. It’s not admitting that you have a secret Nazi past. You shouldn’t have to hide that part of you.

    Comment #70 is factually incorrect.

  121. I agree. It really pisses me off when others try to tell us what is right for us. Only we know that. And if it takes Xanax to help, then do it.

  122. I get judged all the time for being on so many medications. I’m bipolar, occasionally psychotically depressed, have crippling anxiety, OCD, PTSD, and a bunch of other crap.

    Sleepy time tea and a fucking lamp ain’t gonna cut it buddy!!!

  123. I am not a Xanax Mom.

    I am a Cymbalta/Trileptal who dabbles occassionally in the art of being a Ativan Mom!

    Anyone who tries to tell me there is another way, needs to be me for awhile. Not. Medicated. It isn’t pretty. I have tried other routes, including med free. For me (and for the happiness and wellfare of my children), there is no other way. However, if you are wracked with emotional instability and a dryer works for you? Awesome! Wish it was that easy here. I really do.

    Crazy lovable Moms, UNITE!!

  124. God, I love you!
    I happen to be a global self-care provider. (Xanax, Celexa, caffeine, prayer, hours spent playing Song Pop and getting my ass kicked by my cousin, etc.) So, I’m with you. Whatever the fuck works!

  125. Just when I think I could not love and admire you more, you post this. I’m sick of all the freakin’ judgement about what other parents do or don’t do to keep their shit together and their kids on a good path. Thank you for being sculpted from pure awesome.

  126. For those people that don’t need medication to keep their head above water every day, more power to them, but that doesn’t make the rest of us any less worthy of sanity.

  127. What the fuck with everyone sending you that article? You know what makes me a better mom? Time to myself away from the kids and I’ve been criticized for admitting that. I say do whatever it is you gotta do to make it through the day without losing your damned mind.

  128. You know, Jenny, people were always telling Susan (@whymommy) what was going to cure her breast cancer and keep her alive. If they left a comment for her on her blog, then I generally blasted them for it. If they emailed her, she just politely thanked them for their concern and moved on. She was gracious that way.

    She didn’t need their advice. She did everything she could. Took every drug. Did every therapy. She believed in the power of medicine. And it extended her life a few more years than she would have had without it.

    When I went on anti-depressants, I called her and cried because I felt like a failure. She told me that aside from every mother she knew being on some type of SSRI, that depression was treatable. And if I had something that was treatable, I damn well better treat it.

    So I treat it with drugs. I stopped drinking. I lost weight. I force myself to not wear pj’s out of the house. I opened an Etsy shop. WHATEVER. I’m doing whatever I can to treat it because it may not be cancer, but it’s a medical imbalance, and I’m lucky that there is something out there to help me.

    Much love to you.

  129. I agree! I have a very rare medical condition that requires medication in order for me to function and i’m so sick and tired of people telling me how I should handle it. And I swear if one person asks me, “Have you tried changing your diet?” i’m going to flip out.

  130. Great, another article that implies that people only take psychiatric drugs because they give up on managing everyday emotions like they should. Did my mother send it?

  131. I had this discussion with a friend last week, wherein she said she didn’t want to go on antidepressants because “they’re a crutch”. Yes, they are a fucking crutch, but you know what? Crutches help people with disabilities get on with shit. Crutches are great! Needing a crutch doesn’t make you “weak”, it means you have lost your sense of balance and need some help. Maybe you’ll always need them, maybe you’ll be better in six weeks when they take the cast off, but until I’m not depressed I’m going to take my Cymbalta every day because it stops me from falling over and hurting myself worse. And that’s what is important, not how I get there.

    (Not a mum, but depression doesn’t discriminate.)

  132. I told my psychologist your motto of “depression is a lying bastard” the other day during a particularly crappy time for me. She was so overjoyed and said it is the truest and best thing she ever heard. She was seriously considering getting a giant poster to put in her office.

    You gotta do what ever is best for you – if people took away my cocktail of meds there would be serious trouble!

    Continue rocking Jenny! You are my biggest source of inspiration. R xx

  133. Amen, baby. Amen. The thing about psychiatric medicine? It’s… you know… ~medicine~.

  134. I just wanna say how much even better for me you have been than pills. Sometimes a person just stops apologizing for stuff and accepts that honesty is a real thing now. Pills are great when I need them, but I don’t explain or hide myself any more. It’s a relief. Keep breaking that ice. We’ll frolic in your wake. Love you!

  135. Xanax and a low dose of Lexapro and yoga once a week at least and group therapy with other Moms once a week and an occasional ice cream sundae keep me sane. (And I am so lucky – my insurance pays for this therapy and my doctors offer this amazing group that’s strictly for moms with anxiety or depression. I feel so blessed to have that group.)

    I tried for two years without the Lexapro and I hated myself and my parenting. Now, my behavior and my son’s behavior are much, much nicer. He’s responding to the nice mom that suddenly showed up. I wish I had gone back on it before but I didn’t want to be on the drugs. Well, that was dumb. Whatever the hell works – do it! If jumping out of airplanes works – DO IT!!!!

  136. Thank you SO MUCH! If someone tried to take my Xanax, I would cut them. Anyone who wants can spend a day with me and see if the friggin laundry room works for them here – I’ve got a shit-ton that needs to be done, and they can have at it!

  137. Xanax makes me a better person in general. Anxiety and panic attacks suck balls. All those people who prefer laundry? Yeah…they don’t have an anxiety disorder. You rock Jenny and screw any one who judges you. Loudly and with vigor!

  138. That whole thing about the washing machine came straight out of the movie Uncle Buck. I have to call bullshit because I don’t see how that could possibly be enough stimulation to get someone off.

    Here’s to better living through chemistry!

  139. So, I totally have car anxiety… Whenever I pull out of a parking space I get really nervous when someone is behind me waiting to take the space… And I swear, one day, I’m going to hit someone…. Oh well, not really related to this post, but I thought it would be fun to share 🙂

  140. Celexa. For 12 years now. Only thing that keeps me sane. And I don’t have kids. Down to one cat from 3 now. Old age claimed the other two. And just signed up for unemployment after over 30 years at the same place (lack of work). If I wasn’t on this stuff, I would probably be hospitalized because my brain won’t shut up without it. Love you Jenny, and all these other wonder people here.

  141. I really do wish people would just live their lives and leave everyone else alone to live theirs. Why is there a constant need to butt in?

    Frankly I’m a sauvignon blanc & old min-series on tv mom. They get me by. I’m not the rat race kind of person, if I have too much to do I get depressed. Some might call me lazy, but I don’t care. My house is clean, my kids are fed & taken care of(and happy!). But I also deal with 20 yrs of MS and holy crap, the things people try to tell me I need to do, the meds to take, it’s infuriating. Me time is what keeps me healthier and saner.

    And the wine. I mean why the hell do you think my blog title is about wine? ha

    Oh and if people can’t get around to buying a proper vibrator to get the job done & rely on a dryer? You can’t trust em.

  142. I haven’t read the article, but I love that you’re saying this. When my brother found out that I’m on three different medications for my bi-polar, anxiety, and depression he started saying that I should find herbal alternatives and that I was just poisoning my body. No matter how many times I tell him that I can’t really function without my medication he still says that.

    So thank you for saying to f-off to those that don’t agree with prescription medication.

  143. Jenny – you and your readers are awesome. As always.

    Commenter “Prescription” – you know very little about what you are talking about, you know just enough to make you dangerous.

    For me, having my career is my key to a happier me, which makes me a happier mom…so maternity leave (I’m on it now) is no fun and borderline awful unless I keep busy…so I am renovating a half bath starting next week…my baby won’t even be a month old yet.

  144. I honestly walked away from that article not sure how I felt–angry at the dryer portion, the doctor who thinks ppd is overdiagnosed or maybe glad it was being talked about. Sigh.

  145. I have had depression since I was a young teen and now I have been on meds longer than I haven’t. Sometimes I feel like I don’t feel any different than before I started meds, but I’ll be honest, I don’t want to try getting off the meds. The people around me say they have made a difference, but what do they know, they are all on meds too. At any rate, we all do what we need to do to get by. I am a better father because I’m not a father.

    (Sometimes switching meds can help. I was on one drug for a long time and it stopped working as well so I switched to another. Talk to your doctor. ~ Jenny)

  146. so, are they saying you need to get in the dryer? but I thought that was Hunter S. Thomcat’s deep-space hamster wheel.

  147. Those people are asshats. Seriously. Would you tell a diabetic that they’re addicted to their insulin and that they need to just relax their blood sugars down? Would you tell a cancer patient they just need more sunshine? An asthmatic that it’s just in their head? And those fucking angina patients – just need to stop seeking attention and suck it up.


  148. You go girl! I’m on so many meds it’s not funny. All in the name of health right? Most of my sleep meds are for those who are either depressed, bipolar, or that thing that Michael J. Fox has. I have none of those diagnoses. Just a sleep disorder, dystonia, and periodical limb movement. DON’T JUDGE ME BY THE MEDS I TAKE!

  149. I hate when people get preachy about prescription medicines. Honestly, they do more good than harm, statistically. If you are lucky enough to have insurance or money to get them and you’re life is emotionally or physically incapacitated in a chronic way if you don’t have access to them, then that’s what I think of as “the benefits outweighing the risks.” Just my opinion.

    And sure, if just the washing machine works for you, fine. But there might be a good chance that many of your friends and family, certainly neighbors, are regularly giving you the side-eye and thinking, “Why don’t they get on something before they end up in the nervous hospital? Did you SEE them splayed across the corner of the washing machine AGAIN?! They should at least get some damned curtains!”

  150. What some people don’t seem to realize is that without medication some of use can’t find the energy and motivation to do anything (including masturbate)!

  151. I’ve been on anti-depressants since my four-year-old son was born, and Xanax since I lost my daughter to Trisomy 18 two years ago. My family and friends were supportive of the anti-depressant, but once the Xanax came around, they got weird. Guess I crossed a line. The good news is, I am not bothered by any of it. Maybe it’s my new found emotional freedom. Or maybe it’s the Xanax.
    Yeah, it’s the Xanax.

  152. Well there you go. It’s so simple, just go hide for 5 minutes and the world will be all sunshine and unicorns. Why the hell didn’t I think of that? I think I will pass on that suggestion and continue on my anti-depressants (which didn’t help my dancing one damned bit by the way) and let my doctor be the judge of what works best for me. IDIOTS!!

    Why in the world anyone would try to be the judge of you and your medications, unless they are your doctor, is beyond me. You’ve found what works best for you and that is simply not their business. Carry on (note you don’t even have to remain calm).

  153. Where’s the standing ovation button. Your blog NEEDS a standing ovation button for times like this when you deserve more then just a “Damn Straight” and a “Right On” from your followers

  154. When in public I usually hide in bathroom stalls till panic attacks stop. Not wise to tell anyone to stop their meds…ever….fer realz….that’s crazy….

  155. Sorry about the typos in my last post. My left ankle is swollen again and I’m having to prop up on a pillow which means I lowered my computer chair so I’m having to raise my arms up high to type. I’m being tested for RA, Lupus, any and every autoimmune problem again and I’m on a new arthritis medicine and steroids. Today is the first time I’ve felt a normal energy level in months and I’ve been on these new meds for about a week now. If they work and give me 20 more years of normal or even semi-normal, Imma cut someone if they recommend the washing machine instead. Just kidding, I won’t cut them. Okay, maybe a look, I’ll cut them a look.

  156. A-fuckin’-men! I hate when people are judgmental about what other people should do…take care of yourself and I will take care of me, thankyouverymuch!
    You are so cool-just wanted to say that 🙂

  157. There’s a stigma to xanax?!? I was the popular kid in college because I had the anxiety disorder to be prescribed xanax. Just kidding. Not really. No really I wouldn’t share that with anyone!
    And I AM a better mom because of my scripts. Just like the insulin dependent diabetic or the Peron with high blood pressure.

  158. I’ve hidden under many a table in my day…if you count being so drunk that when you try to stand you instead slide onto the floor…ok…so maybe I failed at table-hiding. Not that I’m “hiding tables”…that would be weird. And hard to do. How you would hide a table, anyway? It’s not like you can throw a sheet over it and pretend it’s not there, because hello…tablecloth! That never fools ANYone. And people get really really mad when you break their tables into small pieces. I’ve heard.

    So…where were we?

    Medication can be a life-saver. As someone with bipolar I know I’d be nowhere (or worse) without my meds. And now when I’m under the table I know it’s because I’ve chosen to be…playing with my grandkids. We’ll save you a space!

  159. The coolest thing, darlin’, is no one else’s opinion matters, when it comes right down to it.

    My wise therapist gifted me with a one-liner to keep at my beck and call: “I know what to do, and I do it.” I’ve held it close for going on 10 years.

    You are the expert of you, Jenny. You know what you’re doing, and you’re doing it. For those who think you should be doing otherwise, fuck ’em.

  160. This was one of the best things I’ve ever read about Xanax. Been on it 20+ years and have no intention of going off, yet…Medicare refuses to pay for benzos and now a CA legislator wants to put people who use Xanax in the same category as people who drive drunk. Hey, I wouldn’t be out in my car ever if I didn’t have Xanax to quiet my panic/anxiety. What is this guy saying? That I would drive crazy? I would drive crazy if I DIDN’T use Xanax.

  161. People may mean well when they give unsolicited medical advice, but society as a whole really needs to cut that shit out. The so-called medical shows and ridiculous celebrity advice (how many medical degrees do celebs who rail against vaccines have? how many people from Celebrity Rehab aren’t with us anymore? how many times do we need to gape at large people on Discovery who “need help”?) make it easy for people to pretend that giving strangers medical advice is perfectly normal. IT IS NOT NORMAL. A real medical professional, nutritionist, or specialist knows you can’t diagnose online or after a couple of minutes of anecdotal chit-chat. It’s the people exhibiting a particularly bad case of Dunning-Kruger who don’t realize they don’t know enough to keep their yams shut. YEAH YOU HEARD ME, I JUST CALLED MOUTHS “YAMS,” WHATCHA GONNA DO ABOUT IT, UNASKED-FOR-MEDICAL-ADVICE-GIVERS?

    Long story short: Screw people who do this to you, no matter how well-intentioned they are. And those who are just being judgmental? Put a sack over their head and hit them with a frying pan.

  162. i haven’t read the article, but i agree with you 100 percent. whatever it takes (and hopefully it won’t make you blind).

  163. I’m sick to death of hearing the opinion of people who don’t need meds to function “normally”. Right…I should try harder, use alternative therapies, just make up my mind to conquer it, or pray harder. Whatever. None of the aforementioned crap worked for me. In fact…I firmly believe that God gives each of us our own special set of burdens to bear, and mine is the daily reminder that I am unable to function without my meds. There is indeed something in my life I cannot control, and I am humbled by it. And made stronger by it. And again, said so many times, unless you’re me – your opinion doesn’t count. Fuck off.

  164. Yep. I’m sick of people telling me how to treat my fucking mental illness. IT’S MINE. FUCKING HANDS OFF. Do what you need to do for you, but leave me the fuck alone about it.

  165. When will people stop thinking that there is a one size fits all approach to mental illness? For some of us it is really quite complicated and more of a life or death situation. If anything, all of these stories should teach us to be compassionate and understanding of one another, not give more judgement.

  166. Hey Jenny. I’m so glad you wrote this. And I say to you – AMEN, sister. Everyone should do what works best for them – and we should not judge each other.

    I’m thrilled to be a part of the Xanax article because my goal is to help other moms who are dealing with PPD/depression to not feel alone and not feel ashamed. The article is causing some controversy, which is to be expected. But that’s fine by me. It’s getting people talking and putting the topic in the spotlight.

    Something I’d like to clarify that didn’t come across in the article: When I was interviewed for the piece, I was in the midst of a several-month hiatus from SSRIs. I had been on so many kinds and they just didn’t seem to be working. And the side effects were getting to me. So I decided to see if I could be off them.

    But now I am back on an SSRI because though I was doing well for a while, I slipped back into depression. I tried to get through it without meds because I hoped my depression was gone – and that’s how my laundry-room dryer strategy happened. But the depression isn’t gone, and I’m back on an SSRI. And I’m fine with being on it, because with it, I feel like me again. Regular, happy me.

    I still use my laundry-room strategy when I need to chill. White noise calms me and helps me refocus. But like most people who deal with depression, I also need the help of medication. And I’m not ashamed to admit it.

    Thank you, as always, for writing about depression. You rock.

    JD Bailey

  167. I prefer the power of puppies. A few minutes playing with the little fur balls and I feel calmer.
    Not a cure, but a mild sedative.
    When all else fails, I stay in bed or on the couch.

  168. I am ALL for better living through chemistry… unless that doesn’t work for you and you found something that does, in which case, good on ya. Because guess what? There’s no WRONG way. If it helps you be happy and live your life, then it’s right. Period. Judgey people can eff right off.

  169. I will say this to JD Bailey–coming here to post and being so polite is both wise and brave. So kudos to you for that. I hope you and/or your doctors can get your meds or whatever it takes right sooner than later and that something ends up working long-term rather than short-term for you.

  170. I just had to up my meds cause they weren’t working anymore and I felt a little guilty about that. But I’ve decided that that’s stupid. I feel so much better now! I smile, I laugh, I don’t freak the f$@k out at everything! I enjoy my life! If other stuff works for you and makes you happy, good. Me, I’ll stay with my meds, my baths, and my cat. I’m too busy enjoying my life to care about people who would judge me and call me ‘weak’.

  171. I read the article and immediately thought of you, so it’s pretty cool that you’re posting about it. I think it’s amazing how contrarian people will be when unsolicited. It’s probably a large part of the problem we have as a country with diagnosing mental illnesses; someone we love has an issue larger than him/herself and instead of helping to find counseling/therapy or as a country making it available, we recommend standing in front of a dryer and taking a deep breath until everything fixes itself. If everyone could be more accepting and encouraging in seeking treatment, maybe more people would be more open about talking about it and we could have an upward spiraling trend. In that way, I think you’re doing a great service by being so open about your anxiety. Good job, and thanks for talking about it!

  172. Thank you for letting us all know that we’re not the only ones–dealing with depression, being medicated for it, and occasionally still needing to hide under the table.

  173. If I did not have drugs and therapy, the only way a spin cycle could make parenting easier is if Olivia was in the washer at the time – and we can all agree that that would be A Bad Thing.
    I take Effexor every day for depression, along with propranolol for migraines. Also Clonazepam when I need it for anxiety; and Imovane, codeine, and prochlorazine for migraines. And zopiclone to sleep. I also wore a splint for two weeks when I broke my finger. I see a chiropractor for musculoskeletal problems. All the same category – when my body fails me (or I damage it), I turn to medical science to get me through. Science makes me able to function as a productive member of society, a valuable employee, and a kick-ass dad. If it was necessary, science could even make me a mom.

  174. The whole medication thing makes me crazy…do I take it? Or do I not and scream at my daughter? Tough choice right? But the world today just has backward thoughts on mental health…and that drives me more crazy….
    Bottom line…I am with you…if it works then everyone else can shut the hell up!!

  175. My moto in life is “whatever fucking works”. I have been medicated. I needed it then. I probably should have been medicated since then. If that’s what you need you do it.
    PS if you come back to Toronto and need to hide under a table I’m your girl. Assuming that it is not a day when I am hiding in my closet. We have a shared laundry room in my apartment building. That could be embarrassing. The closet works much better for me 🙂

  176. Thank you for posting this. I’ve suffered with serious social anxiety, generalized anxiety and depression for most of my life. A series of stressful events surrounding my second pregnancy and premature birth of my son followed by his NICU stay (he’s fine now, thankfully!) left me an anxious obsessive/compulsive wreck suffering from daily panic attacks. One particular afternoon found me literally curled in the fetal position on my bed convinced I would die from some horrible disease and not see my kids grow up. It took two psychiatrists (the first pawned me off after cycling through at least 6 different drugs) and 2 therapists to get me stabilized and now I take regular anti-anxiety medication and anti-depressants. I didn’t realize how much a part of my life all that was until it was lifted from me, and if it takes medication for the rest of my life to finally be ME, so be it. My kids will be better off with me here than buried under the covers.

  177. I’m one of the thousands of people who loves you even though we’ve never met, and whose words have made me laugh when I needed it, and seek medical help when I needed it more and your honesty and cursing and drug taking have all made my life better, and I freaking love you, even when I’m hiding under a table.


    Th people who don’t understand who much work and thought you’ve put into taking care of yourself and the people you love, well… (insert growling noise here)

  178. thanks for taking the stigma out of depression. Zoloft makes me a better mom – it also makes me forget shit but as long as i don’t forget about the baby it’s all good.

  179. WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE who think they can tell ANYONE what they medicine they should take? I mean, listen up, people, anytime you come down on the Tom Cruise side of advice giving, you need to take a step back, take a deep breath, and imagine yourself claiming a space alien soul and hurtling couches making a complete moron of yourself, except you’re not entertaining the rest of us in a sad way, you are making us completely unhinged. Which means, pass the Xanax and Shut Up.

  180. I am always so humbled by your openness about your struggles with mental health, and feel the same about any one else who brings these issues out into the open. The fact is, the management of a mental health condition is between that person and their physician (or counselor) and is always a complicated process to get the best results. The same is true for the treatment of high blood pressure or diabetes or any other physical illness. The more people realize that mental health issues are often caused, end up causing or worsened by changes in brain chemistry, and that they are medical issues the same way any “physical” illness is, the more people will find it easier to have the courage to ask for help. You’re an incredible inspiration.

  181. Ugh, life: you make your choices and then with God’s grace (or whatever) you also make peace with those choices (you in the generic sense). The alternative is to swing wildly with every dissenting opinion thrown at you. Jenny, I admire you so much and am grateful for your frankness about…everything. And that last sentence was YOU in the specific, not the generic.

  182. Alcohol does not work for me, anti-depressants do.

    An awesome book is “The center cannot hold : my journey through madness” by Elyn R. Saks, an endowed professor at the prestigious University of Southern California Gould School of Law. She has dealt with having schizophrenia since she was eight years old. Her story is fantastic in so many ways. One theme through much of her life was trying to live without medications and how she finally needed to accept that she needed them to stay sane. Many of us who have different stories have found the same thing is true. There are some side effects to every medication. The people to decide are the individual and a trusted physician.

    Do not let anyone sabotage your life by saying that you do not need anti-depressants when you and you doctor have decided that you do better with them.

  183. Adopting a new rescue dog makes me a better mom because Children Services won’t give you warnings and lectures if you make your dog kid poop in the yard. They will will if you let a human kid poop in the yard which is total discrimination. Being a dog mom makes cleaning up after my kid much easier

  184. I take 9 (NINE!!) prescriptions a day just to function.
    2 antidepressants
    1 thyroid pill
    1 BCP
    3 allergy/asthma meds
    1 anti-anxiety med
    1 stomach pill
    If I’m training for a race (half marathon), add 3 inhalers to that regime.
    Do I want to me on this much medication? Not particularly, but the alternative is being miserable and never getting out of bed. I tried it, and this is better!

    Jenny, you amaze me and inspire me. I know there is someone out there that gets it. Thank you! You keep doing whatever works for you, table and all, and I’ll keep sending you all the love and good thoughts I can spare.

  185. No one should ever be ashamed to need medication or behavioral therapy for any mental disease. I’m clinically depressed and have been for years. My youngest daughter is bi-polar. We both have medications and therapy. Mental illness is no more or no less than the dealing with diabetes and yet we would never suggest that someone who is diabetic sit on a washing machine to “cure” their disease. I tell Emma, talk about, talk about it again and talk about it some more and maybe one day people will be gifted with intelligence and an understanding of mental illness.
    Until then, they can go fuck themselves.

  186. I am currently in the grips of one of my worst anxiety attacks in ages, and only stopped crying long enough to check what my favorite blogger has to say. Jenny, you have made me realize that I am weird and strange and a major doctor who nerd who needs meds sometimes to function. And all of this is ok. I will try anything that may remotely work to reduce the impact of my uniqueness on my son. But I absolutely do not tolerate anyone telling me what I should or shouldn’t do to on these days. I am the only person who has to deal with the lying voices in my head. Sorry for the rant, but I have had so many people today tell me that I should just suck it up, act like an adult, have a drink, or some other ridiculous suggestion. Please, please, if you don’t experience these feelings… just be supportive of your loved ones, hug them, let them know you are there, and love them no matter what.

  187. I would suggest that you say what table, and when, and there will be a bunch of us under there with you to support…. but I’m betting that would actually be counter productive. 🙂

    And to the person who says ecstasy is basically like xanax because its the same molecule… tell you what, go take the hope diamond and replace it with the graphite from a bunch of pencils… they are chemically identical so its the exact same thing with the same effect on people right!? ……Notsomuch.

  188. I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer 4 weeks ago and a ‘friend’ of mine has been spamming me with Foods that Cure Cancer! sure I will eat buckets-full of blueberries instead of the mega-surgery my doctor highly recommends. blueberries! who knew?

  189. People with diabetes need medication to help their bodies function properly — they can’t “will” their body to work fine without medications. People with depression/anxiety/etc need medication to help their bodies function properly — they can’t “will” their body to work fine without medications. You’re doing what you need to do to make your life better, and that’s AWESOME that you’re taking control and trying to be the best version of yourself you can find a way to be.

  190. I have a mini pharmacy next to me as I say, you do what you have to do and anyone who doesn’t like it needs to know it. I am all for hearing about how others survive and trying it. I have read more articles cut out, emailed, texted and tweeted to me and I do appreciate them all. I have tried them all and will try any others but do not get mad at me if yours doesn’t work for me. (under the table is great, the floor of the closet with all the lights off is my hidey hole 🙂

  191. Hey Jenny! I couldn’t agree with you more about doing what you have to do, and not being ashamed. For lots of us, including me, that means daily meds, and it’s 100% worth it. However… I’d just like to give a little heads up to others that xanax and other benzodiazepines, while very effective (at least for a while, although for some lucky people forever), are HELL to come off of. I was put on them by a doctor who insisted they weren’t addictive, but after two years on them it took me over another year to come off of a daily dose, with nasty symptoms every single day from the withdrawal. Stopping quickly nearly sent me to the hospital and left me in bed for 2 weeks with symptoms I’d never experienced before (or since, luckily). All I’m saying is if you need the xanax, take it. But if you don’t NEED it, or there’s any other option, tread really carefully with the benzos, because they are TOUGH on your body when you try to come off.

  192. I couldn’t agree with you more about doing what you have to do, and not being ashamed. For lots of us, including me, that means daily meds, and it’s 100% worth it. However… I’d just like to give a little heads up to others that xanax and other benzodiazepines, while very effective (at least for a while, although for some lucky people forever), are HELL to come off of. I was put on them by a doctor who insisted they weren’t addictive, but after two years on them it took me over another year to come off of a daily dose, with nasty symptoms every single day from the withdrawal. Stopping quickly nearly sent me to the hospital and left me in bed for 2 weeks with symptoms I’d never experienced before (or since, luckily). All I’m saying is if you need the xanax, take it. But if you don’t NEED it, or there’s any other option, tread really carefully with the benzos, because they are TOUGH on your body when you try to come off.

  193. Even though I’m currently on 2 anti-depressants, they are no longer working like they should. I’m tired of feeling like this — sad, no energy, just a general mental fatigue…feeling like the worst mom in the world and that hiding from the world and all that it offers is better than getting out there and living…this SUCKS!!! If you need meds to get through the day and make life better for you then do it…if holistic meds and yoga work then do it. I’m going to talk to my Dr about changing my meds to something different….I want to be there for my daughter physically and mentally…she deserves the best mom, and that mom is best on meds 🙂

  194. Anyone who tells me I’m taking the “easy way out” by taking Zoloft? Has obviously not walked a mile in my shoes, where the path consists of an ugly combination of uncontrollable crying, bouts of rage alternating with complete apathy, and feelings of utter hopelessness and despair.

    If alternatives to drug therapy work for someone? That’s fantastic and I’m happy for you. But don’t you dare have the audacity to judge what works for me…or anyone else for that matter.

    Thank you for sharing your ongoing struggle with depression and anxiety. It really does help to know we are not alone in this

  195. “… That describes half the parents I know.” (as depressed.)

    As someone who’s been officially diagnosed as clinically depressed twice, hearing people having a bad day (sigh) say “Oh, I’m SO depressed!” ticks me off. If you’ve been there you know what it is and they aren’t words to toss around lightly, and if you don’t know what real depression feels like then shut.the.f*&.up.

    (Gets off soapbox)

  196. I agree with better living through medication, alcohol, chocolate, hiding under tables oh and I even took up yoga but I’m not giving up the other stuff. The yoga makes it easier to hide under the table with the medication, alcohol and chocolate. Some medications say not to take with alcohol as you make experience hallucinations etc. Pass me the booze and hide my car keys.

  197. You are so right! If I didn’t have my anti-depressants and my occasional Xanax and the ability to hide under the table I wouldn’t be as great of a mom that I am! If I am sick, I take some medicine. If my kids are sick, I give them some medicine. If my cats are sick, I give them some medicine. If mommy is sick, then all hell breaks loose and this is why I take my medicine.

  198. Love you!!! My son goes and gets the Xanax when I’m in a bad mood. He’s even been known to get me coffee at the same time and once he got me a beer. The kid knows his stuff. <3 Does that make me a bad mom? Maybe. But my kid is happy enough. That's all that matters. <3

  199. Amen, sister!! Xanax has kept me from going off on my kids and a few dance moms more times than I want to count. Never judge someone until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes and then do what works for you.

  200. Thank you for this. I have a feeling that some people are going to want “big names” to attack the article, so I am glad you can break it down so simply. We just need to be happy, for cripes’ sake. Can we please find our happiness in whatever way works for us and our family without nasty judgements?

  201. Well said. Thank you for being the voice that I don’t have. And you are fucking awesome. Each of us is awesome, we just need to always remember it.

  202. I completely agree. Whatever helps make you feel normal. I live with a chemical imbalance. Medication is what keeps me sane and alive. Without it, I would be at the mercy of society’s “Mental Health System”…i.e., a loony bin or a morgue.

  203. Damn straight. Sometimes you need prescription drugs, and you know what? That simply makes a person perfectly normal.

  204. I cannot take anyone seriously that thinks the dryer helps actual mental illness.

    Also, your blog is almost as good as Xanax sometimes.

  205. It’s articles like that that send us back into the dark ages of dealing with mental illness. It’s people like you that bring us forward in our understanding of mental illness. I salute you and your insanity. (I can say that because I’m insane, too.)

  206. In response to #70, I’d hate to know of what she thinks of me… my doctor is willingly prescribing me a low-level antidepressant while I am preggo. We will try and wean when I approach delivery, but she agreed that it’s better for me to take a SMALL risk to remain mentally stable and not cause harm to me or my unborn child. Do I feel guilty? HELL YES! I feel like a loser some days, thinking how pathetic am I, that I can’t even muster enough happiness to keep my unborn child safer? But then I remind myself that DEPRESSION LIES, and I think back on how awful I felt emotionally when I was preggo with my first. I was manic depressive – up and down, up and down. My poor husband didn’t know when to hide in the garage from day to day. Now, I still have crappy days, but they are not near as awful.

    As for MDMA vs. Xanax, puhlease! Been there, taken both, and there is no comparison…

  207. I didn’t realize we were supposed to send you articles or that we were supposed to tell you to change your treatment protocol. Who needs doctors when you have bossy,know-it-all people who’ve never met you available to direct your care?

  208. Plu-leeze don’t those irate folks know this is not the place to judge? And anyway it’s the spin cycle, not delicates that gets the job done! 😉 My therapy- pug therapy. A few minutes with those clowns and I know at least the dogs appreciate me. M.

  209. I’ve never suffered from depression, but I had people close to me who did, and the one thing you want for them, is to feel better – as good as it gets. I admire everyone on here for coming out of the dark and teaming up. You are all awesome, and don’t let anyone ever tell you differently. Ya’ll do whatever it takes, whatever works for you.
    And all my respect for Jenny for having the balls to shine the light on the topic. You rock.

  210. I used to work for a crazy woman. She was so crazy she made me crazy. I started having panic attacks. I got Xanax. I didn’t take much, but it saved me. Anyone who presumes to judge you for doing what you need to do, and legally are allowed to do, to get through the day . . . well they ought to mind their business, not yours.

    Lucky you are amazing and a best selling author who doesn’t have to take crap from creeps. You make people laugh and you give people who deal with much harder things than I will ever understand strength to get through the day – no matter what you may thing, that makes you a stupendous human being.

  211. The problem with the whole dryer thing is that after while it’s not enough; and you have to go bigger and more powerful. Now to stay happy I have to hump concrete trucks.

  212. If the delicates cycle comment Wasn’t masturbatory, then I have no idea what you’re talking about. But I’d love to know, when you have a free moment.

  213. I totally agree. Stop the hate. What concerns me is that, as a society, there is so much focus on medication as the cure for what ails us. Drugs are drugs. Whether prescribed or bought on a street corner. I am most certain that smoking a big blunt in the late afternoon would make the evening routine so much more fun and enjoyable, but I have to consider and question why it is I am needing it and whether I can still create and authenticate those feelings on my own. And then light it up. 😉 Recently I was talking to a friend who was telling me that Mothers in the 50’s and 60’s were prescribed a form of cocaine in order to lose weight and improve mood. I’m sure that it did. For a time. And then we discovered that it had this addictive aspect to it and altered moods and we had mothers shoving their heads in ovens to escape…

  214. It’s too bad that comment #70 has no basis in reality, because with the way our silly healthcare system currently is it would be easier for me to get MDMA than antidepressants. 😛

  215. @Gwenifire I’ve been taking (and will continue to take) Lamictal for the duration of my pregnancy. And I don’t feel bad about it one little bit. My doctors agree that it’s the right choice for both of us. Pregnant women make a thousand decisions a day about which risks to take, and it’s all just a coin flip anyway. You can’t follow all of the advice everyone gives you, you just have to make the best judgement you can and hope for the best.

    Maybe we can make a pact. You stop feeling bad for taking your psych meds, and I’ll stop feeling bad for being unable to control my blood sugar with diet and excercise alone. Deal?

  216. First of all, the delicate cycle is for wussies – wash a big comforter if you REALLY want some action, and kudos to you for being honest about what it takes to get you through the day. Kudos for everything. Even the weird taxidermied animals, all of whom I love now. I love that NPR helped me find someone even weirder than I am. Wait, I think I just came out in an odd, NPR-listener, Jenny Lawson-stalker kind of way. But I’m totally normal. Most of the time. I’m not really a stalker. Hell, I’m too lazy.

  217. I fucking love every single thing about you. You and everything you write make me know that I am not alone. Yes even though I rely on prescription drugs and therapy and a million other little things to get through the day, I am not crazy. I am not alone. You fucking rock. Period. The. End.

  218. Thank you so much for this. All joking aside, mental health is the modern day version of leprosy.

    Soon we’ll be stuck on tropical islands with a bunch of priests. And who wants that?

    But seriously, these drugs help me get out of bed in the morning. Some of us hurt inside, and it helps. Just like high blood pressure meds help those with high blood pressure. To me, you’re even awesomer after this post. And that’s pretty damn awesome!

  219. It frequently sounds fucking awesome to be you. Thanks for always making it feel honest, here’s to Xanax AND spin cycles, because why the fuck not?

  220. On behalf of myself and my best friend, who both have bipolar disorder+anxiety issues and also severe health problems+migraines (all of which require the strongest and most controversial pharmaceuticals to get relief and be functional), THANK YOU.

    Thank you for standing up for us, for all of us!

  221. Thank. You. I was having a conversation about this just last week. Someone was complaining that everyone puts themselves in little boxes and relies too much on medication to make the world better. I told him that I have been on anti-depressants for almost ten years now, and I will NEVER EVER go back to how life was before. Maybe a laundry room is enough for some folks. But some of us need a little more. And our lives and our family’s lives are better because of it. Fuck the judgeyMcJudgersons. We do what we need to make it work.

  222. Did the article mention how to handle the legal aspects stemming from the fact that I would have to go to the laundromat down the street? 😉

  223. This is the most supportive thread of comments I have ever read about such a controversal topic. I fought antidepressants at first. My five year old son had been diagnosed with terminal cancer, and it was “suggested” I take them. Now that he has been gone for two years, I am still on them. It’s been a roller coaster of being on and trying to be off them. I’ve learned enough about myself these past few years to know I AM a better mom when I am taking them. I can function, be happy, be patient with my children, and we can talk about our son and brother in a healthy way. I read JD Bailey’s blog regularly, and she is doing a lot to help moms get over the stigma of needing SSRIs. You have great fans Jenny!

  224. I agree. We should stop the hate. Especially when we all know how difficult parenting can be. I am concerned regarding the push I feel our culture has with prescriptive medication. I feel like if it’s not Xanax it is something else. I was talking to a friend who was reminding me that in the 50’s and 60’s they were giving new mothers something similar to cocaine in order to lose weight and help increase mood after childbirth. Certainly lighting up a blunt in the late afternoon would make the night time routine much more tolerable and fun, and definitely I have been know to enjoy a rewarding glass of wine at the end of the day- but it’s important that many of us try to create and seek out alternatives that empower and build faith in our own abilities to authenticate true happiness.

  225. Oh, yes! Yes a thousand times. If biting your nails works, do that, if eating ice cream helps, do that, if scream-therapy works, do THAT! The only thing that should limit you in trying to help yourself feel better is like, laws and not hurting other people. Sorry, guys, no punching random hobos to de-stress.

  226. I feel beaten down by every suggestion of ‘cures’ from random people I hardly know, to close family members. I swear I die a little inside every time.

    What I have & deal with is incurable, so shove your extreme diet suggestion up your collective _______.

    It enrages me because it suggests that I’m not smart enough to know my own health, do my own research, or consult with enough experts who have given me their medical opinions & come up with a plan to try to manage my screwed up body so I can try to pass as a functional human being again.

    It’s a touchy subject for me because recently I had 3 different people, within the span of 2 hours, tell me what I needed to do because it’s what they did—and their issues were not even what I’m dealing with. I also don’t even really know them!!! I just want to scream “Shut the _______ up!!!”

    [Wow, I really seem a bit unhinged, but I just think it’s better to approach people with empathy instead of preachy, non-applicable, “the only right way” types of diagnoses.]

    {Also, thank you for posting this because it was exactly one week ago that I had to deal with the well-meaning know-it-alls & I’ve had no where to vent my frustrations.}

  227. Well put.

    Some depression is actually due to chemical imbalance in the brain, just like epilepsy. It takes drugs to fix this. Sometimes non-chemical depression is too severe or too ingrained to be treated with cognitive therapy alone. I think some people jump on to the drug bandwagon prematurely and even unnecessarily because they see it as a quick fix. Other people NEED the medications. It’s a big world out there with a huge range of people. One solution does NOT fix all depressions, just like ‘one size fits all’ is a fucking lie when it comes to clothes and hats. Now me – I take oroxine. Without oroxine I’d be depressed. AND FAT. Oroxine is what they give you for an under-active thyroid. Try fixing THAT with a dryer, bitches! lol

  228. With you 1,000,000,000% Between my Bi-polar disorder and anxiety sometimes what makes me a good mom is the fact I chose the right man to be their father so when I’m hiding under the table or sitting on the floor of the kitty litter aisle at Target because they got rid of my regular brand and I couldn’t decide which one to use he’s right there holding my hand, or taking the kids to get slushies and me a diet coke to take my valium before I even ask, or just sitting there next to me debating the pros and cons with me and making a “Sure decision that ____ is the right one. No doubt! Good choice, Honey! (HUG)” despite the fact I made no decision at all except blubber, blubber, blubber, tears. But you know what….I thank God for modern medication. It has allowed me to live a fulfilling life and has allowed me to BE a Mom in the first place. Without bi-polar and anxiety meds, there is NO way I could do that.

  229. I once had a panic attack that was so bad that I thought the only way to stop it was to drive my car at a high speed into a tree, I got as far as getting into the car, turning it on and driving half way down my street before I pulled over and cried for a good 30+ minutes. That was the day I realized that I was a fucking mess and needed help. That help came in the form of a little 20mg pill that I took once a day and a therapist that I went to once a month. Medication doesn’t work the same on everyone, but for me it made me not want to kill myself. Depression also varies from person to person, some people never have suicidal thoughts, some people don’t need medication to make them feel better and bully for them. My advice to anyone out there struggling with the idea of taking a anti-depressant is talk to a doctor, find what works for you, and give all the nay-sayers out there a big F.U. because no one really knows how you feel but you.
    So… right on Jenny! You are awesome and don’t let any one tell you different.

  230. Xanax has saved me so MANY times that I’ve lost count. Medication WORKS. Thank you for being such an awesome ambassador to those who do not know how to cry out for help (as well as those who have sought help, and could use a laugh. Or a thousand.)

    Also, this is the 2nd post today that has had something to do with vaginas (in a round-about way). Maybe you should take Victor into the laundry room? Or the back of a “hot and steamy” truck?

  231. I cant tell you how much this post means to me. Having fought depression and anxiety for years, trying to be a good mother and wife at the same time. Feeling so sad that I needed medication to make it through the day. Realising that no therapist can do what the serotonine reuptakeinhibitor can do. And I have seen a few.
    It just made my day that someone finally says it out loud. Being a parent is tough shit sometimes. And whatever makes you be the best you is ok. As long as no one gets hurt.
    Thank you. Really.

    Mette, Denmark.

  232. Well said 🙂
    I have had depression and anxiety since my early teens. I’ve never used medication, but if someone had told me to “hug a dryer” during my rock-bottom period, I would have punched them in the face. Every depressed person is unique, so their treatments (if they get any, that is) should be catered to their specific needs. One man’s shaky dryer is another man’s Xanax. I do whatever I need to do to help me live my life well. People should just butt out sometimes.

  233. Thanks for making us NOT feel like freaks or failures because yoga and dryers don’t cut the mustard. This is not a “one size fits all world” and I’m happy about that because it keeps life interresting. *grin*

  234. I don’t need Xanax. But, I do need other meds and writing and poetry and my dog and to be left alone when I get stressed out. Whatever works for you, you know?

  235. Yes. It’s not like the flu, and even the flu requires different treatments for different people. We are all 16,7 million shades of all the colours in the rainbow, one panacea does not serve all…

  236. It is indeed awesome to be you, and those of us who recognize that bask in the reflected glory of your awesomeness.

    P.S. When does the book tour hit Austin?

  237. If you read the story highlights along the side of the article, you get the correct points of the article. Unfortunately, almost everything beyond those three sentences is incorrect. And I will be kicking the next person who tells me I’m not going to “talk therapy” because I’m “not trying hard enough” unless they offer to pay my bills. (I’ll bet 10 free therapy sessions (with someone other than them) that they were opposed to universal health care.)

  238. If xanax helps use it. Medicine is there to help you… use it for what ails you. The ignorance of society associated with psychiatric medicines and mental illness is generally disgusting. Tell those who only want to use herbal remedies to support those with mental illness to only use herbal remedies if they get cancer too and forget about antibiotics if they get a bacterial infection. Hey no vaccinations either, they are not herbal or natural just die from curable diseases (morons). The reality is (and Jenny we know you know this) mental illnesses are as life threatening as cancer and sometimes alot more painful. Ignorant people are simply just assholes.

  239. The “Dryer Mom” is back on her anti-depressants. The interview was done months ago when she thought – like many of us sometimes feel – that she had her depression under control and no longer needed medication. Here is her post: http://honestmom.com/2013/02/17/good-things-are-happening-round-here/

    I have been there. I thought I had the worst of it under control and that I was “fixed” – I was wrong. I felt better because my meds were working. After another episode and a meltdown I am happy to be back on track.

  240. Lexapro every day, xanax when I need it (which took a while to work out, ’cause I was so afraid of getting addicted that I convinced myself I didn’t need it even when I had workday panic attacks that had me weeping and shaking in the bathroom for a full hour), my awesome therapist, this blog and your book. That’s what works for me, and apart from actually being sane all the time, I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

    Now that I think about it, maybe not even that.

  241. Better living though chemistry. It’s my motto. I get so tired of people telling me that I should try all these alternative therapies for my panic disorder. I tried them. It did not work and I was miserable. Drugs work for me. Would I like to not have to take them? Well, they don’t bother me, but should I find myself marooned on a desert island without a pharmacy, I guess I might be in trouble. But then I realized just how many people function because of medication. No one cares. Do what works for you.

  242. I’m there….I tried all the alternatives to the point of becoming … not something I want to think about. Now…medication. More power to those finding what works!!!! I would like to not be on it….but right now….it’s necessary. I love that you are blunt on this topic! More power to ya!

  243. Hiding under the table works for me a lot of the times. To thine own self be true…

  244. These are the things I believe:

    You have to whatever works for you.

    Depression lies. (Thanks Jenny.)

    If possible, once you’re feeling stable, try to get to the root of what is causing your symptoms. Because sometimes it helps if you can work through all that. And sometimes it’s just your chemistry.

    Sometimes it’s OK to feel REALLY SAD. (The key word here is FEEL.) And sometimes the things that come along in life REALLY HURT. But we all have to take care of ourselves; and quite often we have others depending on us. That can get very overwhelming. One of the best things about being a parent is that the children grow up and as they do, that great burden of responsibility gradually lessens.

  245. I personally am part of the take-a-pill-and-hide-under-the-table group… and that’s okay by me! I’m just glad I’ve found something that works (most days). Keep doing what you’re doing, Jenny. And thank-you for being the advocate we all need!

  246. I say do whatever works for you. I don’t see the point in not trying something that may help you, be it anti depressants or hiding under a desk. I’ve struggled with depression and confidence issues for years now and last year decided to start blogging. I talked and rambled for two years, I called it free therapy as I said everything I couldn’t say elsewhere. Worked for me, wouldn’t work for others. We are not all lemmings, each to their own treatment!

  247. Whatever works! It’s important to keep an open mind because nearly every method/medicine will be different for each person who tries it. I’ve been taking 300mg of St. John’s Wort daily for nearly a month now, and it is FANTASTIC. Thus far, it’s really helping with my depression. I’m still in the “let’s see how this works” stage, but I’ve made a big turnaround in just a few weeks. Like, really, I had no idea what it felt like to be semi-normal and to function like a real human being instead of a sad, self-hating zombie. That said, St. John’s Wort is like prescription drugs in that it probably won’t work for everyone the same way it does for me.

  248. That right there? That’s why you’re one of my heroes. Live and let live, kiddos. Sometimes I’m all good with yoga and juicing, other times, I need a little lorazapam to stop being afraid the monkeys are plotting against me. Haven’t killed anyone yet, so it’s all good.

  249. I didn’t read the whole thing. Mostly just skimmed. But I’m gonna come out and say it: Effexor makes me a better mom. It makes me a better everything. After living with depression since age 3, after trying all the tricks in every Yahoo article I found about “how to beat the blues,” I finally gave in when I realized I was spending more time trying to figure out how to avoid the kids’ noise and meltdowns than actually parenting them well, and when I started to think everybody would be better off if I shut myself in the garage with the car running. Sometimes a person’s brain is broken, and medication helps fix the problem. Just like sometimes a person has trouble with their heart and needs to take Cardizem, or just like sometimes a person has trouble with their blood sugar levels and needs to take insulin shots, or just like a person sometimes has trouble with their eyesight and needs to wear glasses.

    We do what we need to do to get through life and be better parents. And I hate the stigma attached to these medications. Are they over-prescribed? Sure, but so are pain meds, and nobody criticizes a person who needs those. It’s so frustrating to me that I and so many others put off getting therapy or medication because of that social stigma and the belief that if you just work at ignoring it long enough, it’ll go away on its own. It won’t. Mental health is not a joke. If you have good mental health naturally, count yourself as blessed and have some compassion for those of us who don’t.

  250. You’re absolutely right! Do what works for you. A person’s experience with depression/anxiety is completely unique to that person, so their treatment plan should be unique as well. Do what works for you!

  251. I parent a child that requires medication and the judgement is unreal. But I thought I would let you know that quite frequently you are my Xanax. Thank you for helpng me get through several days.

  252. Now, I cant say anything. I dont take Xanax but I do take psychotropic meds of my own. BUT is just me or does she come across a little like ‘Fuck you, I need more than a Whirlpool to deal with my shit!’ ..just some bitterness, thats all 😛

    *This is meant in a teasing way, so please dont tear me a new asshole, I like the one I already have!*

  253. Thank you! I hate it when I am judged for taking anti-depressants and people want me to go the “holistic” (sp?) route. That doesn’t work for me. Trust me. You want me on these meds. 🙂 And you know what – you’re fucking awesome! 🙂

  254. Jenny! I beg you to listen to them! They have all the answers and know better than you what you should do. I mean, *they read an article!* ON THE WEB!

    How could they be wrong?!?!

  255. you are the most awesome-est ever. for a crazy person you sure have a logical sane and compassionate perspective.
    love you mean it.

  256. YOU make me a better Grammie cuz you contibute to my daily laughter. On the days you don’t publish a blog I just open your book to a random page. And now I bet you help my 3 girls be better moms cuz they all read and quote you. Rock on, Jen, rock on. Your daughter is one lucky child!

  257. I must stop reading those articles, or more accurately, I must stop reading the comments after them. Thank you, Jenny, for creating a safe place here where there is no judgement for having health problems and needing meds – only support and celebration.

    YOU are the the internet’s table under which I hide.

  258. Why yes, pills are an easy road to take. Considering my “non-easy” road alternative is being locked away in the looney bin, I think I’ll keep on taking the “easy” way out.

    And why are pills considered easy, anyway? The side effects can be really annoying, if not downright intolerable sometimes, and I don’t put up with them for shits and giggles. I wasn’t exactly thrilled about being put on a heavy-handed sedation medication after my postpartum psychosis breakdown. It wasn’t easy to tell my husband that he had to handle ALL night duty because I was practically comatose for 9 hours after taking it. That wasn’t easy at all.

  259. Right on. This rebuttal is so unoriginal now, but it makes the best impact: no one would tell a diabetic to stop taking their insulin and just “get over it.” Or someone who needs glasses to just squint and try harder. Sigh. Your book has done so much for all of us. Now that it is in paperback, those who saved their money for their meds can afford a cheaper copy now, and they too can laugh until the bed jiggles and feel like they aren’t alone. Carry on.

  260. What’s with random nosy know-it-alls trying to push people away from medicines THAT COULD SAVE THEIR FUCKING LIVES? I mean, they think the random articles they read on the internet make them better judges than the patient and her doctor? Really? Even if there’s a very real possibility that taking their advice could result in death? Kinda dickish, if you ask me.

  261. Thank goodness she clarified the “white noise” thing. I’ve been wondering all afternoon – what the heck is the dryer for???

  262. I just read that same article a few days ago.
    Parenting these days, and I’m sorry for anyone who doesn’t agree;or who gave birth to angels, literally to angels with wings, who turned into teenagers with wings and a halo, but parenting is hard! The good outweighs the bad, but the bad is sometimes reeeaaaaalllll hard. So my thought:
    Xanax is good!
    Misuse? Not so good I guess.
    Sitting and hugging your dryer? If it works for ya……, but I know the last place I want to hang out is the laundry room. I hate laundry, so why would that be my happy place.

    My motto:
    Xanax good
    Dryer boring

  263. I do like the line about “put your own oxygen mask on first”. I’ve been saying that for years. If you’re not breathing, you’re not doing your kids any good anyway.

  264. My mom had to start taking antidepressants when I was 6 because nothing else worked. She was a delightful hippie who tried every other remedy in the book, but thankfully was strong enough to realize that she needed to be on medication. She was (and is) an awesome mom and if she hasn’t found a prescription that worked she probably wouldn’t be around now. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but please don’t ever say that taking an antidepressant means that my mother was bad in ANY way. She is awesome and amazing and strong for taking care of herself so that she could take care of me. Love everything about you Jenny, keep being a wonderful mother like you are.

  265. You are the awesomest of all the things that are awesome. There is such a fashion for dissimg medication use these days – modern medicine is a *good* thing people, try living like a Georgian for a year and see how well you do. Asking for help and doing what you need to do to be whole is a sign of strength, not weakness. And to the crazy who thinks Prozac = ecstasy? I wish it were that fun. Plus I could make a mint selling them on!

    As an aside, want to hear a random non-drug thing that helps me? Escalators. I ride up and down department store escalators for a half hour (or until the staff notice) – I have no idea why, but this has a calming effect on me. It’s odd because escalators is one of the things that gives my mum panic attacks. We’re all wired very differently.

  266. Whatever the method, I admire people who have been able to persist and figure out what works! I was finally diagnosed with narcolepsy and prescribed stimulants to keep me alert so I could actually do my job. I don’t usually like talking to people about my symptoms, struggles, etc. because most people just thought I was lazy and looking for an excuse. The only people who really get it and are encouraging are those with some sort of similar behavioral disorder. I get tired when people try to tell me that things like diet/exercise will fix it. I’ve read cases where it has worked for people (either alone or in addition to meds) but that’s not the case for me. I feel like myself on adderall although the crash can really suck (headache, depression, anxiety, or nothing–I never know what I’m going to get). I am working through finding ways to control the crash and it’s not a fun process, but knowing how it’ll help long term motivates me. It’s a personal choice but prescription meds do serve a purpose when used correctly…and for me it has been life changing. I know adderall can become addictive, but this positive change is also what keeps me grounded so I don’t even consider abuse which would diminish the results. My only caution would to just educate yourself on anything prescribed to you so you can get the maximum benefit from it. Reading patient forums has also been great to remind myself I’m not just lazy and that different treatments work for different people.

  267. Fuck yes. I took antidepressants with both pregnancies (and before and after and now). I even had to take a couple of xanax at the end of my last pregnancy. I’ve gotten some “well meaning” remarks (heh), and to them I say, “These meds hurt my kids less than their mom killing herself.” Since college, I have tried to quit antidepressants to prove something to who the hell knows, and each time, I find myself back in the hole. I’ll never quit them again. Apparently, my brain needs them and I am OKAY with that!

    Thanks, Jenny.

  268. Not only does Xanax make me a better mom, it makes me a better co-worker, friend, wife, and PERSON! I make no appologies for that EVER! My anxiety/panic is not controlled by anything else and I would probably be curled up in a ball in a closet crying right now without it. How can I be a good anything curled in a ball in a closet crying? I feel brave for finding what works for me so that I can function and care for my son.

  269. Agree – there’s no shame in needing medication. I always thought there was no fixing me – certain noises set my teeth on edge; if I don’t have a fan going or if it’s not perfectly quiet, I can’t sleep and will inevitably end up in tears. Xanax actually helps take the edge off and makes me less horrible to be around.

  270. Hell yeah! Each person is different and need different remedies to make them whole. Whether pharmaceutical or holistic or whatever, we should not judge. As someone who feels like I have tried everything under the sun for my various issues, if I were to find anything that helped, then everyone else can shut the hell up about whatever is was.

  271. Yeah, Xanax got me through some tough times in my early 40s. Great for PMS days too (1/2 tab was perfect). Who are they to judge? If everyone was the same, this world would be a pretty boring place. THANKS FOR BEING IN IT BLOGGESS!

  272. Seriously, the women’s movement should have taught us that my way doesn’t have to be your way. Sheesh. As long as your kids are safe and you’re here loving them, why should anyone but you decide how you do things? I do take chemo for an auto-immune disease. I’m wondering if I am obligated to post the bad side-effects or if it’s only for drugs that can potentially make a person happy??? Take your Xanax if you want, post what you want about it. xoxo

  273. I’m pretty sure that the ability to calmly say, “what-the-fuck-ever” when people give you unsolicited medical advice is what makes you a better mom.

  274. That article made me sad. I have never been medicated for depression/anxiety. I had the opposite problem once where my doctor figured out my new brand of oral contraceptives was causing anxiety issues for me so I switched back to my old brand and that fixed it. But that’s the thing – sometimes there is something you can fix without an anti-depressant or other prescription medication, and sometimes you (and a doctor) figure out that those meds are what is going to work best for you. People suffering from depression and anxiety have enough to deal with, they don’t need articles like this telling them they should feel bad for getting treatment. Especially when the stakes are so high for not getting that treatment.

  275. AMEN sister! PREACH IT!
    I have an excellent mental health program. I am overflowing with love and light and grace and mercy. I am 58 years old, married 34 years; I am in touch with the “real” world. I am happy. BUT was caught off guard when I “suddenly” became suicidal. What the . . . ? My life was saved by 40 MG of fluoxetine, which, a year ago had to be increased to 60 MG.
    We each have our own path. Bless somebody RIGHT WHERE THEY ARE.

  276. I don’t care a bit that you take Xanax. What I care about is that you send me some. Now. P.O. Box I have a shitty attitude, Atlanta, GA, 303helpme

  277. I applaud you and sufferers of every type. I know it’s hard to take responsibility for your health, happiness, and well-being when you aren’t feeling strong or worthy. YOU ARE AMAZING. Someone is always going to have an opinion, they’re cheap – so the fuck what. Be afraid of those people who never ask for help…there is a storm brewin’. {hugs}

  278. GREAT answer, and great answer to “prescription”, whose lofty one-person Rx for everyone on the planet was untenable.

    When I taught in a very high-needs middle school, we teachers–even the men–used chocolate at school in addition to whatever other assistance they chose when off work (or before the school day began, if so prescribed). Someone in the staff room would get a wild look in their eye and talk about joining the Peace Corps. My teaching partner, ever generous, would say bluntly, “You need chocolate. Follow me.”

    Chocolate was the preferred currency at our school. If you needed to tell someone thank you or I’m sorry, you said it with chocolate.

    Did we gain weight this way? Oh yes.

  279. I have the same issue because my son is autistic and takes meds. The crap I have to listen to from people telling me that I should take him off medication and give him… whatever. Please. Unless you have walked a few hundred miles in my shoes keep your opinions to yourself.

    And as for the dryer I couldn’t figure out what to do with it. I was fairly certain that getting in it wouldn’t work but then what? Do you sit on it? Hug it? Purchase some sort of attachment at a sex shop? Perhaps sitting on it and meditating might work… as long as you didn’t fall off.

  280. People are such judgmental assholes. I don’t know why minding one’s own business is so fucking difficult for some people. If you don’t like drugs, don’t take them. Don’t approve of abortions? Don’t have one. Don’t have gay sex. WHATEVER. But if someone else’s behavior isn’t hurting you or yours, leave them the fuck alone. Dryers in lieu of necessary prescription meds? Wtf, yo? Whatever does it for you.

    I’m glad we have you around to publicly set these people straight. Bloggesspocalypse!

  281. Sounds to me like the first woman mentioned in that article happily got past her crisis point while on the meds — that doesn’t mean other people aren’t still living in an extended crisis point. That article is a good argument for good mental health coverage, because that’s a good mental health professional could have helped her recognize her incremental improvements as she went along.

    And I also took offense at her worrying when her child was sad — because children can get sad too. Just one thought –watch what her daughter watches. If it involves news or a teaser for the night’s news, she might have been honestly sad for a tragedy in someone else’s life. Don’t ignore that.

  282. I agree with you Jenny. Some of us need medicine and mental health is like anything else – why should be told that we can push through it or just get over it? I don’t see any reason to suffer in life more than necessary. If there are tools to help us live easier, happier lives, why in the world not???

  283. You bring this topic up enough for me to ask you to help me understand how to reconcile taking medication when there’s always a creeping doubt in your head that you can do without it? I take a small amount of painkillers daily, and I have daily pain…but how can people be feeling worse than I and not even take advil (Read: John McCain)? I suspect my pain is manageable without medication, but I take it, because it’s easy, and it works, but not always because I “need” it. My Dr says to think of it as insulin…a diabetic wouldn’t feel bad about taking insulin daily, so why should I to treat myself? But my mind says I am weak, and dependent, and its been so long I will physically get ill if I stop taking. it – any maybe I don’t need it, maybe I WANT it. I’m tearing up at work right now, about this conflict in my head. How do you know when its OK to be dependent on a drug to get you through the day, and when its just become an addiction?

  284. You’re awesome, and if the xanax is working for you keep at it. I don’t know how many people have told me that I just need to take melatonin, or that it’s all in my state of mind and I just need to think happier. I’m more of a hides in the bathroom kind of girl myself though, because that shit has a lock. 🙂

  285. Thank you for everything…tired of hiding and tired of explaining when forced to. Tired of being afraid of losing my job if people knew I had to take something….then again in February – it ALL SUCKS – too gloomy, too cloudy, too cold and without meds….not sure where I’d be.

  286. It was a lot simpler when we lived in caves.

    Except when we were eaten by dinosaurs.

    That was depressing.

    And there was no Xanax or dryers to help.

    Or desks to crawl under.

    So it was simpler, but it sucked.

    Carry on.

  287. I was diagnosed with insomnia and depression at 20. Sometime after that they added generalized anxiety disorder…and a could of years ago (I am 38) I was able to acquire some serious tactile hallucinations as well. I didn’t take any medication until my late 20s, my parents were adamantly against it and in favor of more exercise, omega 3s, etc. unfortunately I was doing all those things and it wasnt helping. I didn’t really commit to medication until I was 33 and I didn’t REALLY commit to medication until I was 37 and it was time to have a baby. I went off everything and was promptly a disaster. I figured putting, myself back together was my first priority. My psychiatrist, with whom I do weekly therapy, convinced me to have a medicated pregnancy. And I did. And at the dinosaur age of 38 I gave birth at 39 weeks and 1 day to a perfect little apgar 10 boy. How it all worked out still bewilders me at times. I did all the research I could etc., offered myself to research but no one was interested. My meds were too old to be a concern. I am still on them. I am formula feeding in order to keep my medication options wide open because that is what is best for all of us. Anyway I was pregnant on Wellbutrin, amitriptyline, and xanax. And I don’t regret it. The baby is fine just like all the doctors promised and I am actually enjoying being a mother. People should remember they haven’t walked in other people’s shoes…and if someone could give me a pill tomorrow that would cure me for life I would take it in a heartbeat. It’s not just taking medication. It’s planning your life around its schedule and side effects too. It’s not as simple as many people realize especially when you are on high doses of multiple drugs.

  288. Everybody can have their opinion, but #70 is trying to have her own facts.
    Also, giant Hurray for Cheril!!

  289. Thank you for always saying the right thing! And miraculously you seem to do it when I need it the most. It was 3 years ago that I worked up the courage, or the deep desperation, to actually speak the work depression to my doctor. I had beat around the bush about it in the past with two other physicians and received nothing for my efforts. I was proud of myself. My trouble now is that my sister thinks I can just change my mind and decide to feel better, that I shouldn’t rely on medication. That ignorance hurts me. My husband doesn’t understand that I have ups and downs either. I do my best, I get out of bed EVERY morning, and I tackle the day with two youngish kids. I may not be perfect but I do my best to be the best me I can muster. Thank you for always making me feel validated. I know where to come when I need to be understood, and to laugh while feeling that acceptance. Thank you, thank you, thank you for helping all of us. You are sooooo loved!

  290. Jenny, you are full of awesomeness! I have several people who love to give me unsolicited medical advice. My teenager had a (then) undiagnosed medical condition, and a co-worker kept insisting I put her on some special diet. After about the 6th time she insisted this would work, I explained to her that I was not going to feed my child a pound of butter a day, which is what the diet called for. She had no clue this was recommended! In fact, she didn’t believe me until I printed it out and gave it to her.

    Do what is necessary to survive. Quality of life matters. My favorite quote helps. It is “Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass, it’s about learning how to dance in the rain”. Keep dancing, and eat a pound of butter a day, if it works. Rats, now I want butter cookies.

  291. I don’t think the dryer thing would work for me. Mine’s in the garage and it’s kind of dark and creepy in there and sometimes bugs come by. I appreciate the sentiment though.

  292. Depression/anxiety and so many more are a chemical imbalance not a behaviour choice, therefore chemical correction is a solution not a lapse in judgement…. people in glass houses should… run around naked.. give the rest of us something to laugh at.

    Jenny…. as always.. you rock.

  293. I love my meds…. they are why I can leave the house…. the knitting is so I don’t kill people when I’m out there dealing with folk who have stupid opinions and SHOULD be on Xanax!

    Course the meds mean that the spin cycle option DOESN’T WORK AT THE MOMENT…. but apart from that wonderful side-effect I’m much better 😉

  294. I loved catching up on your blog today. But…I miss your old posts ..’pre-book publishing’…the real ones…with more content, more to say, more of a story, … etc. I know it must be hard to constantly have something to say though. 😉 Miss you. *hugs*

  295. (PS that’s more in reference to the other recent posts. hoorah for this one – and I love that you’re standing up for meds when needed. wholeheartedly agree and wish more people would. love when i see a doc nowadays who doesn’t believe in medicine, and doesn’t understand why i can’t just breathe and “find my inner light” and- suddenly! magically!- be without chronic severe pain anymore! that pain meds should only be for people who are dying. What a crock of …)

  296. Right on girl! It’s whatever works for YOU. I personally think Xanax is the bomb diggity. Great post.

  297. I’m upset the name “Prescription” is already taken, because it’s awesome. Although if it were mine, with my luck, it would be pronounced “Perspiration.”

    Also, since I’m now some kind of math prodigy, I’m imagining half of the 67 people emailing you with one point of view and another half with the other. We math prodigies are not like normal folk, you know.

  298. Yes. That.
    I wish to hell the laundry room bit worked for me.
    It’d be cheaper in the long run, I’d probably remember to change the clothes from the washer to the dryer and I might even be able to talk my insurance into covering new appliances.
    I think people that find something that works need to just thank whoever the heck they believe in that they found something. So many people will never find a solution, will always be searching – may even give up.

  299. Dear “Prescription”,
    Even though I am a pharmacist, or maybe because I am a pharmacist, I have a knee-jerk reaction against taking medication myself – because I am lucky enough that Firefly works for me. That does NOT mean that I do not see medication’s utility. Also, you should know that MDMA (methylenedioxy-methamphetamine) is not related to anti-depressants, and even more unrelated to Xanax and other benzodiazepines. It is, as its name suggests, a close relative to methamphetamines, or in other words, crystal meth. Which is related to such drugs as Adderall and Ritalin. Very dissimilar uses. Also, please keep in mind that ecstasy is manufactured in less controlled environments and dosed by unprofessionals (like rave kids!). What is helpful in a clinical setting can also be very dangerous when used in inappropriate ways. Examples? Why yes! Aspirin, Digoxin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen, insulin – you name it! Use it wrong or to excess and it can kill you. Guess what? Still great drugs that have saved many. If Jenny were taking Xanax in large quantities for entertainment, she would be pretty loopy and incapable of doing the mom thing. If she is having a panic attack, it can do its job and improve her momness. Very different situations.

  300. Also, I would like to send a virtual hug to so many people posting here. So many people fighting so hard just to be OK, but managing to be awesome at the same time!! Fills me with hope that future generations won’t have such trouble with haters. It takes insane amounts of courage to get the help you need.

  301. Marthat Tow- (Comment #412)-

    Most of us have probably also gone through that. I go through that EVERY TIME a doctor gives me a medication for a new issue (currently it’s gestational diabetes. Do I really need to take this drug to regulate my blood sugar or can I just cut back further on the carbs and exercise even more? I’m still working through that.)

    The first couple of years after my bi-polar diagnosis I would occasionally test the issue by going off my drugs for a while to see if I was better yet. That always ended badly. I don’t recommend it. As for John McCain, I don’t know his pain level and I don’t know how you could compare it to yours. Pain is individual. Even if he has the same illness as you, that doesn’t mean his pain level is the same (or worse). When I had my wisdom teeth extracted I had some pretty severe side effects, yet my pain level was significantly lower than my brother’s was when he had his done, and he didn’t have any side effects. (I base this on the fact that I was up and functioning MUCH sooner than he was, and that he is not a slacker or wimp).
    I wish you luck in whatever you choose to do. Just please don’t compare yourself to what other people are doing. Those people are not in your body, and what works for them may not work for you.

  302. yes – we are individuals – that is why every one needs an individual therapy plan. if we were all alike, the drug companies would only sell one drug and the alternative mediciners, the dryer peeps, the masturbators, the runners or worker outers and the self soothers would all be taking xanax.

  303. If I have a headache, I take some Ibuprofin. If I have an ear infection, I take the antibiotics. I currently have a non-functioning thyroid and a rare blood clotting disease, so I take meds for those. Without them, I wouldn’t be a better mother…I’d be a dead mother.

    I also take meds for my moderate-to-severe anxiety disorder and for depression. Then I have things I take when those two don’t cover it (I call them the Rubber Band pills because that’s what they make me feel like when I take them…all loose and wibbly-wobbly).

    If all my faulty genetic hard-wiring could be corrected by sitting on a dryer, by Margaret, that’s what I’d do. But it can’t. Making myself well is part of being a grown-up. No one is impressed if I’m struggling through an illness without the tools I need to beat it. And it’s not for anyone else to bloody tell me how I should be doing something else or how I’m doing it all wrong.

  304. You woudn’t let a heart condition or diabetes go untreated would you? Same here. As long as you’ve done the research, and no one is getting hurt, go for whatever works for you, I say. And I clearly need a new spin dryer …

  305. Just added another sentence of yours to my list of favorite quotes. “Whatever it takes to keep you breathing, y’all.” Love you much.

  306. One of my favorite chapters in your book was your recount of a dinner party rant about necrophilia. I picture myself as you, and the only person in (my imaginary) crowd who does not back away is one of my dearest friends – who, on occasion, will call me because she had to leave work because she could not stop crying. For the next terrifying hour on the phone, we both do our best to convince her that the only thing wrong with having to leave work because you can’t stop crying is beating yourself up over the fact that you had to leave work because you couldn’t stop crying. And even though I prefer laughter, I am completely blessed to have this friend that would gladly sit under a table with me.

  307. I about triple jumped kicked someone in the face when one blog posted the parenting article and said they were saddened that society didn’t understand the power of prayer in curing these “things” and instead, we are turning to medicine. Maybe I wouldn’t have been so enraged had I had a xanax or two today…. I wish people would stop commenting about things that they can’t understand. If you haven’t walked a mile in someone’s shoes, then go pray that you never have to and shut up.

  308. A comment I read by someone about a recent suicide put me over the fucking edge. She said, “I would never do that to my children.”

    I call bullshit on people presuming to know.

    Not a one of knows another’s demons, battles, or wherewithal. We all need to quiet the judging and do a great deal more encouraging. As a society we really risk turning into the fucking Ghostbusters sludge if we don’t start living differently.

  309. I suspect people who’ve never had to deal with severe depression/anxiety are the only ones who do the “you could do it without medication if only you wanted to” crap. They mean well, but they just don’t get it.

  310. You are fucking awesome. You are.

    Do what works for you. I for one love that it is the year of the library. That was reassuring to me.

  311. This makes me a little sad that I have a stackable washer and dryer. I could save a lot of money on xanax.

    And batteries. I’m just sayin’.

  312. I just read the last paragraph and went looking for the “like” button. Only you don’t have one. I like this anyway!! You gotta take care of you. And eff the haters!

  313. I’ve been ranting lately about the mean girl stuff. All the blaming and the judging. Sometimes we need a post like this to be reminded that “what-the-fuck-ever” should apply to most choices we make as parents. Choices that keep us human and sane. Thank you.

  314. Before I found Xanax, I was having life-crippling panic attacks more than once a day. Now they are few and far between, THANK GAWD. Xanax has pretty much saved my life. And I’m not ashamed about it ONE BIT. Thank you for being the powerful, far-reaching voice we with depression/anxiety need. Love you!

  315. I am ashamed to say that I used to be one of those, “you don’t really need prescription anti-depressants!” people. I ranted about the over-diagnosis, over-medication, over-eagerness of doctors. I called it a crutch.

    I did that because I overcame my depression without drugs. So I thought I knew something, no, that I knew everything. I judged everyone on my personal experience and thought it was all a scam. I still think that some doctors may rely too much on drugs. But I now know that I was lucky in many ways. My depression was serious and lift-threatening, but it was also a one-shot episode. My experience wasn’t typical, and I’ve had the chance to see how much drugs can help people who suffer life-long emotional injuries.

    For those people who try to tell you how to live your life, try to tell you what is right as if they know better than you and your doctor, I am sorry. Since I was once one of them, I apologize for all of them.

    Keep being awesome.

  316. Thanks for this. I was on antidepressants for a year because I was having CRAZY panic attacks, depression, no sleep etc. due to some horrific life events. Best decision I’ve ever made. It got my body and mind under control while I dealt with the icky emotions/life shit that I needed to deal with. I don’t feel like I did anything wrong – my body (and yep, I count my brain, hormones, etc. as part of my body) were out of wack and I needed help. It did the job. The minor side affects were worth it. I was afraid to tell anyone because I didn’t want to be judged, but since I’ve started reading your blog – I’ve been more open about it. Your story helped me, so I figure my story might help others. You are inspirational. Thank you.

  317. Try not to hurt people then do whatever works. That is all.

    (Actually, that is not all, because I have to say that I love you SO much Jenny. You’re as amazing as me! Rock on!)

  318. I always get annoyed regarding the stigma attached to antidepressants. Just because a few people misuse them, usually because their doctor hasn’t explained them fully or doesn’t offer enough support.

  319. So…you are suggesting that medical professionals and yourself have a better idea what sort of treatment works for you than the internet does?!
    Damn straight.

  320. I read an article recently that really rang true…


    I have just scrolled through several blogs with comments about the issues of modern motherhood, filled with strong statements about attachment parenting and the enslavement of mothers.

    Part of the problem is, I believe, this emphasis on mothers, rather than parents, contrary to feminist ideals.

    Here, instead, I’m going to focus my thinking on parenting, believing that children benefit when both fathers and mothers reflect on their roles in family life.

    Let me share several thoughts, and hope that these begin an important and thoughtful process for us all. An essential component of much of the contemporary discussion about what is going on with mothers and kids seems to be a chillingly joyless approach to parent-child relationships, filled with lists of shoulds and correct actions.

    Basic to any thinking about parenting, in my mind, is the strong realization that there is absolutely no one right way to raise kids. Children are totally unique, parental experiences and values are distinctive, and the partners coming together for child-rearing create a particular environment.

    So it is mind-boggling that much of current American parenting philosophy dictates very specific actions of “good mothers”, from the first matters of ideal timing for pregnancies (get the career and mortgage established) and childbirth scenarios (no epidural, please, and preferably at home).

    Then parents go right through to the requirements of “attachment parenting”, with stringent mandates for length of breastfeeding, family sleep patterns and more, right down to details of when children can first be left overnight with others and which DVDs promote the genius level seemingly aspired to by all.

    I have a personal theory about the reason for this shrill philosophy of guiding principles: Having rigid guidelines is enormously comforting when parents find themselves beset with terrifying confusion.

    A Grandma Says reader recently accused me of not understanding the problems of contemporary parents. Actually, I am in awe of the pressures that surround you.

    Families struggle with the complexities of their daily lives, with most of you working outside the home as well as in. Society neither seems to value your important parenting work nor supports the messages you are trying to impart regarding character, and with media, the Internet, peers and other influences continually undermining your efforts. But clutching with passion to the latest parenting philosophy dicta is only a stopgap form of security. All the time and energy that goes into adhering so closely to the approved line that mothers end up feeling “enslaved”, according to the blogs, or involved in competitive judging of other parents who are not hewing as closely to the guidelines, could well be spent in building healthy parent-child relationships. So, consider what you want out of life for yourself and your spouse, and for your children. Is it to be a continual struggle to feel that you are doing parenting “right” according to someone else’s dictates? (This concept, I assure you, has no happy outcome for anyone.)

    Or is it time to realize that parenting consists largely of some common sense, some flexibility, and a sense of humor to hold it all together, along with a lot of making it up as you go and hoping toward the future.

    What is your bottom line?

    My feelings? You do what you have to do to be the best parent you know how to be. If that includes Xanax, Zoloft, etc. as you said, Jenny, what-the-fuck-ever. Tell those judgy pinheads to cram it up their ass.

  321. Thank you! I’m not a mum (or a mom for the US audience) but I hate the stigma attached to depression and medication. I’m on my third round of antidepressants and accept they are now a life long commitment for me, along with my insulin for type 1 diabetes, these 2 drugs keep me sane and allow my family and friends to live with me. I wish the judges could live in our shoes for just one minute of a ‘good’ day without meds and then try to preach to us!

  322. I find, when I have just been involved in a situation or with people who have got on my tit is after I get in the car just to let out a loud scream, relieves the tension, seems to work for me

  323. *Le Sigh*

    I didn’t read all of the comments so I’m sure that someone already wrote this. Probably with more eloquence than I’m about to though.

    Fuck what ANYONE has to say. Do what works for you. AT. ALL. TIMES.
    You know what your issues are better than anyone else. You know what works for you. If you try to give medical advice to anyone on your blog, someone might take it as sound advice and try it. That may lead to, oh I don’t know…let’s say suicide for example. (sorry – I know how that hits home for you) But that is a real possibility. It’s even more of a reality that someone may take your word that you know what you are talking about because you suffer from various disorders so “IF JENNY SAY’S SO IT MUST BE TRUE!”

    At the end of this, all I’m trying to say here, is people asking you to comment, fight for, fight against or anything in between when it comes to mental health is absolutely reckless.

    Good for you for knowing the line not to cross. That’s why you are awesome.

  324. We each have our own journey, and our job is to make the best of it. Some of us need a little help along the way. As people/humans/fellow mental health care recipients its our job to be supportive of others struggling on their journey. Jenny, thank you for being one of the very loudest cheerleaders!

  325. I have a sinking feeling the Xanax people will be contacting you soon with a check, Jenny…
    Good luck.
    Great post, by the way!

  326. The magical think about us humans is this: we are all different. Those differences extend to our brain chemistry, personalities, and even the way we tie our shoes. What keeps you sane isn’t going to work for everyone else. What is important is that you figure out how to keep yourself moving, and if you are really lucky, happy and well-adjusted (whatever the hell that is). Support is great, but let people figure out what makes them okay again, and try your hardest not to judge. Sometimes we forget that. Thanks for the reminder Jenny.

  327. Thank you for posting this. I take antidepressents for post partum anxiety. I’m hoping to some day live without, but in the meantime, I will not apologize for it. My husband was reading this article and left it open on the table. My first thought was anger: I thought he was implying that I just needed a break. And instead of blowing up at him like I used to, I asked instead. He just said he thought it was interesting. nothing more than that. Thank you sertraline, marriage counseling, and individual psychotherapy.

  328. Here’s a fun follow-up: my health insurance AND my life insurance treat me like half a person because I’m in treatment for my depression. If I had heart disease, health insurance would pay for everything, but because I have a MENTAL disorder, holy fuck, we can’t pay for THAT shit, oh no. No, you’re a crazy person, you have to pay for that shit on your own, fuckyouverymuch. So then I go to get life insurance because we finally have enough money to afford some and I really need some. Now, if I weren’t in treatment for depression, I’d have a kick-ass premium, but I’d be at a really high risk of shutting myself in the garage with the car running because I would be not in treatment. But because I AM in treatment, therefore LOWERING my fucking risk, they are more than doubling my premium.

    Mental illness is not just something we make up because we feel like it, people. It’s a fucking disease. And yet when you get help, you become a social pariah and suddenly everybody thinks you’re just a fucking nutcase and there’s nothing actually WRONG with you that a little vitamin won’t cure. I’m so pissed and upset. THIS IS WHY people jump off bridges, because they feel like they can’t get help because if they do, they’re shunned, or they can’t afford the treatment, or whatever. Fuck society.