When the doctor recommended that I start taking anxiety medication I was all against it. I had been talking to some people in my church about my anxiety and depression and the actions I was taking in order to fill a void. They had been very supportive but when I discussed medication with them they seemed to be against it. They told me that God gave us emotions to experience life and by getting on medication I will be taking that away from myself. I was so scared to start taking medication because so many of the resources I was depending on was telling me that somehow I would be sinning.
While I do agree that God gifted us with emotions, there is a point to be reached in the mental illness journey in which you need to be on medication. I was to the point I was day dreaming about suicide all the time. I got comfortable with the idea and I was not straying away from it any time soon. It was time to get a little bit of help.
I was so scared that the medication would numb every feeling but it actually didn’t at all. I started off on the lowest dose I possibly could, just to see how things would go for me. I still had low points but they were not as often as they were before I was on medication, they just offered a cushion. I personally try to put more hope in Jesus than I do the medication. Because at the end of the day this medication I’m taking is temporary. I decided that with my doctor in the very beginning. This was something to get me kickstarted through college and transitioned into a more stressful life. When I decide I’m ready to get off the medication I don’t want to take a nose dive because I wasn’t practicing trusting Jesus in the first place. It’s been a challenge but I know it will be very rewarding.
Do not be ashamed to take medication for your mental illness. It’s not something you can change any more than someone taking medication for diabetes. If a person is diagnosed with diabetes they aren’t told to ‘just snap out of it’ like the common reaction to mental illness is. A person diagnosed with diabetes will be given medication and a list of changes that may help their illness if they implement them into their life. Mental illness is the same way, it’s not something you asked for. You can take medication to help it and you can make changes in your everyday routine to help the situation.
I’m sure God doesn’t pick and choose which medications for which illnesses are sinful and which aren’t. I’ve never heard of anyone saying medication for diabetes is sinful, but it’s a common debate on whether medication for mental illness is. God looks at it all the same, an illness. And he wants you to get better.