This afternoon I met with a man who tried to kill himself last week because of complications he felt from the medication he was taking. His father and brother were there as well. Like many people on benzos or opiates long term, he had felt so disjointed and broken that he didn’t feel that he could continue to fight.

There was little I could say or do to console him, so I just listened and held him.

His circumstance is far more common than perhaps people realize. Just this year, six people on psych meds whom I was comforting on the phone killed themselves before they could come to a rehabilitation center or acute care facility. The suicide rate among military personnel both active and retired is one of the highest among any demographic at 22 a day. [i] I don’t think it is a coincidence that this is perhaps the heaviest medicated group in our society. I am certain that there is no category of suicide for ‘desire to escape the hell of living on psych meds.’ If there were one, I have no doubt it would represent a significant portion of those who kill themselves each year.

For many people on psych meds, each day is a life-or-death struggle. So many times I wanted the pain to end. I wanted the lurching mood swings, the violent shaking, the crushing withdrawal – I wanted everything to end. I addressed a poem to the madness, the pain, the problem long before I knew what was causing my symptoms.

The End
Is this how it ends? Screaming at flat-chested
Thumbnails spammed by at the speed
Of migraine.
Spend this nightmare with me
Ice Princess.
Bore through this macadam madness:
These layers of juniper rage, neutral grain spirits,
And thick-boned beeves hanging motionless
In their refrigerated crypts.
Jettison that other manjunk and make room for
Me in your frosty tray.  

You stole my life, Fucker. 

Truth be told, pain, madness, or meds didn’t steal my life. It gave my life purpose, meaning, and value. Now that I realize the global extent of this problem and realize there is a solution to it, I feel more actualized than I have ever felt in my life. I write about this more in a blog titled No Regret.  Please believe that there is life after your suffering – life here on this earth. There is a real alternative to the maddening symptoms you face each day. There are safe, natural alternatives to psych meds that can help stabilize your moods without causing life-threating side effects.

I see this reclamation process at work each day. I witness people getting off of the meds that they have depended upon and been enslaved by for decades, then go on to live asymptomatically.

All I have to do is look in the mirror to see proof that there is life after meds.

And that life is good.

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