I had a very interesting conversation the other day and I wanted to share it with you.
I was talking with a very good friend of mine and he was adamant that doing emotional work cannot help depression or anxiety because "depression and anxiety is the result of a biochemical deficiency" which means medication is the only thing that will provide long-term help.
I remember when I was in deep pain and I sought help from my doctor for my anxiety and he explained to me that, much like a diabetic, people with depression and anxiety just don't have enough serotonin and taking an anti-depressant simply helped to rebalance the brain.
Which is true.
But here's the thing....
Emotions are biochemical messengers that are transmitted via neurotransmitters and hormones, right? So emotions change our biochemistry, right?
Which means that repressing anger (or any of our emotions) regularly will cause a specific shift in the brain biochemistry which we will then experience as depression or anxiety.
But - and this is important! - while depression does involve changes in biochemistry it is not the cause - it is the symptom.
Working on the emotional level allows you to heal the biochemistry imbalance from the inside out and so achieve real healing (versus symptomatic management).
Is this making sense?
And let me say this: better medicated than dead. Seriously. Medications 100% saved my life.
And, I no longer need them.
So if depression and anxiety are just the result of a chemical imbalance - explain me. Explain how after 13 years of fistfuls of drugs and cognitive therapy and hospitalizations I have been medication free for close to 7 years.
You see, here's the thing: antidepressants are great because they stop you from driving off the cliff of your life. And that's a really, really important thing.
And once you've brought the car to a stop you need to learn how to turn your car around and drive away.
Because there is a whole world out there that is not the cliff and you can rewrite your story any time you want to.