I started therapy, but I didn’t believe it would do me any good. I’m stubborn and I don’t listen to anyone. I was right. As I said, I loved talking with Dr. Hadley (not her real name). I could tell her anything. She diagnosed me as having moderate to severe depression with suicidal ideations. My risk for suicide was moderate to low. I told her I thought about it every day, and I had a plan on how I would do it. I also explained that I would never do it because 1. I don’t believe in suicide, and 2. I cant’t do that to my wife.
At the end of our six sessions Dr. Hadley told me that I needed more intensive therapy than she could give me. She wanted me to enter outpatient therapy with one of the VA’s psychiatrists. These sessions would be one hour long. Once again I politely refused. It was hard enough keeping my job without having to take more time off for psychiatric appointments. She sent me to see a psychiatric pharmacologist to get me started on medication.
First a little bit of history. About 7 months before I started therapy, right after I got the notice from the IRS, I decided to stop taking ALL of my medications. This was my slow plan to commit suicide. I decided that I do not want to extend my life artificially. If my physical problems kill me, so be it. I’m not afraid to die.
One of the medications that I stopped taking was Sertraline. I was prescribed that for anxiety 13 years previously. I was taking 100 mg. When I met with the pharmacologist, we went over my previous medications, and he prescribed 25 mg of Sertraline to treat the depression. He also set up an appointment with me to see a psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, Rip (not his real name), to monitor the medication. At my appointment with Rip, I told him the Sertraline was not working. He prescribed Welbutrin and scheduled our next appointment for a month later. At the next appointment, I told Rip that medication was not working either, and my depression was getting worse.
My Downward Journey
It was at this point that Rip asked me if I would consider admitting myself as an inpatient in the psychiatric ward. He told me it would only be for about 5 days, and they could adjust my medication much quicker in there. I declined. I could not take that much time off from work, and I didn’t believe they would be able to make much of an adjustment in my medication in just 5 days. This time, Rip prescribed Effexor for me, and made another appointment for me a month later.