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He Tried Therapy, All We Have Left Is DTFMA
December 23, 2013 5:55 PM   Subscribe

In short, I have, since the age of about 2, been a twitchy bundle of phobias, fears, and neuroses. And I have, since the age of 10, when I was first taken to a mental hospital for evaluation and then referred to a psychiatrist for treatment, tried in various ways to overcome my anxiety. Surviving Anxiety.
posted by Ghostride The Whip (40 comments total) 30 users marked this as a favorite

 
I have no idea what this would be like.
posted by ZaneJ. at 6:02 PM on December 23, 2013


Wow, he's at least three or four times as bad off as I was at my worst. Poor guy.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 6:06 PM on December 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


Also, I can understand that with no apparent way to cure it he has to come to terms with anxiety in his life, but I wish he hadn't ended with the thought that the anxiety had somehow enabled him to do things he would not have been able to accomplish otherwise. One reason many people don't seek treatment is for fear that their anxiety is the only thing spurring them along, when it is merely the loudest.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 6:14 PM on December 23, 2013 [11 favorites]


Who wrote this, Woody Allen?
posted by jim in austin at 6:29 PM on December 23, 2013


I have no idea what this would be like.

I have a very small echo of what this guy has, and I've only really been dealing with the worst of it for about a year and a half, and it is hell. I have no idea how he's still alive, to be honest.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:30 PM on December 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


Yikes. I can relate.

Inderal (generic: propranolol) is amazing and cannot be understated. It helps me by getting me just to show up somewhere and get over the initial anxiety—which will eventually go away (conquered by the Klonopin that I usually take too late because I wavered between wanting to go someplace and being afraid of actually going there).
posted by autoclavicle at 6:39 PM on December 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


I've never been taken to a mental hospital, but dear lord does that sound like my current process of regulating all the various psychoactive substances I consume on a regular basis to try to get everything to be just right. The difficulty of shooting for "normal" and worrying all the time that you're going to overshoot and hit "intoxicated" at the worst possible time, and of course that worrying on top of the other worrying makes it harder to figure out exact quantities.
posted by Sequence at 6:45 PM on December 23, 2013


My first thought is that the poor guy isn't suited at all for the upper-middle class world of achievement and status-seeking and parent-pleasing that he was born into (taking the liberty of inferring his social and economic milieu from the photo of the 10 year old author wearing a blazer while on a Bermuda vacation) but is psychologically unable to abandon it and go open a t-shirt and surfboard shop on the beach, or whatever kind of life he'd actually be able to relax in and enjoy. Was that on the list of things he's tried? Being average, being a failure by Harvard class-reunion standards? Or is that unthinkable to him?
posted by thelonius at 6:53 PM on December 23, 2013 [9 favorites]


This is a strange piece. I mean, to the point of wondering if the disorder he's talking about has any similarity to the anxiety and panic disorders I've been living with, thinking about, reading about, for most of my life.

How can I put it? I was with him on the ipecac and fear of vomiting thing; I regularly keep Pepto and baby aspirin handy on the off-chance I have either nausea or a myocardial infarction, neither of which is likely, but you can tell when I'm really anxious because my tongue turns black from the Pepto and my arms and legs are covered in bruises from all the aspirin. I've gone the beta-blocker and benzo route (it does keep down the shakes!). And I know that "elegiac, desultory feel" therapy gets, when you've realized the therapist is going to do you no good, and he or she realizes it too, and you're just kind of waiting for the end (assuming you don't just decide to stop going to therapy and avoid her phonecalls afterwards). And...well, other details, he got right.

But then I keep reading, and realizing: This is the story of a guy who goes places, and does things, things involving people. He's got a job. He finished a book and got it published. Finished another and that one is coming out soon. For all that he talks about how awful his anxiety is, there's no evidence that it has caused him the level of harm one usually thinks about with panic disorder, with agoraphobia, with other crippling anxieties.

Which is to say: It is amazing how class influences illness. Take just this snippet: "Case in point: In the summer of 1997, while researching my first book ... I spent part of the summer living with the extended Kennedy family on Cape Cod. ... With some time to kill before dinner, I decided to walk around town to take in the scene."

I know what I'm supposed to pay attention to is the humor and horror of his subsequent bathroom adventure, but I'm stuck on this part, where he is 27, but somehow not living with his parents, afraid to emerge from his bedroom. He is doing work, living with people away from home, walking around outside. How did he manage that? How did he stay off disability? How did he afford to see therapist after therapist, try drug after drug?

Is this common? For people to see their anxiety as crippling...but to still lead full, active lives? Are they then incorrect about the intensity of their anxiety, or have they just been given a tool that makes living around the anxiety possible? He talks about anxiety as a bestower of certain blessings--and I certainly believe that there is an outlook that it can give you, a set of insights--but there was precious little evidence of what anxiety had taken away from him (aside from some amount of comfort).

This will sound like I'm saying his anxiety can't possibly be bad. Or that I'm frothing with jealousy because a rich well-connected kid with anxiety made good, while I have not. But it's not really that...it is more trying to parse out my absolute shock with the things that were missing from his piece. So many things in his life were fundamentally going right, despite anxiety. I'd say I was struck speechless, had I not just devoted seven paragraphs to speaking about it.
posted by mittens at 6:54 PM on December 23, 2013 [75 favorites]


I'm reading The Sports Gene, which I find mesmerizing, and one of the interesting passages in it is about how the Met version of the COMT gene seems to correlate with doing better and having less metabolic effort for cognitive tasks, as well as increased proneness to anxiety and sensitivity to pain. That book also says anxiety and pain sensitivity are strongly correlated.
posted by bearwife at 6:58 PM on December 23, 2013 [6 favorites]


I'm really baffled by the idea that his anxiety makes him more productive, because my anxiety is not anywhere in the same universe as his, and it is utterly clear to me that it makes me much less productive than I would otherwise be. For instance, one of his humiliating anecdotes is about a summer he spent "living with the extended Kennedy family on Cape Cod" while researching a book on a member of the Kennedy family. I have garden variety social anxiety, and the idea of living with the Kennedy family, or really any family that was not my family, pretty much gives me hives. I would spend every waking minute convinced I was making a fool out of myself. I would never sign on to that, because I don't think I would survive it. Similarly, he ends the anecdote at a cocktail party, feeling like he doesn't fit in. I would never have gone to that cocktail party, even without the humiliating anecdote in between, because I avoid parties filled with strangers. They're horrible and miserable, and then I spend the two days afterwards going over everything I said and thinking about the various points at which I made a fool out of myself, and it's just not worth it. I would have stayed in my room with a book. I don't publish things, because I'm too anxious that they're bad and stupid. I don't have industrial-strength anxiety. I just have garden variety anxiety, and it doesn't make me better or more productive at all.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 6:59 PM on December 23, 2013 [21 favorites]


Which is to say: It is amazing how class influences illness. Take just this snippet: "Case in point: In the summer of 1997, while researching my first book ... I spent part of the summer living with the extended Kennedy family on Cape Cod. ... With some time to kill before dinner, I decided to walk around town to take in the scene."

I know what I'm supposed to pay attention to is the humor and horror of his subsequent bathroom adventure, but I'm stuck on this part, where he is 27, but somehow not living with his parents, afraid to emerge from his bedroom. He is doing work, living with people away from home, walking around outside. How did he manage that? How did he stay off disability? How did he afford to see therapist after therapist, try drug after drug?


Yeah. You're not alone. And I also don't minimize the author's suffering, but just a quick review of AskMe questions by anxiety sufferers on this very site reveal a much deeper level of desperation, despondency, and disability than the horror of having a "Dr. Harvard" and a "Dr. Stanford" simultaneously fail to figure out how to help, or having JFK Jr. witness you covered in excrement....as an extended houseguest of the Kennedy family working on a rare-air book deal. I can recall a number of questions in the green by folks literally rendered homeless, or at least prisoners of (sometimes abusive) parents' homes, or a horrible marriage, by symptomology that meant they couldn't even hold down a part time cashier's position. People who had been on waiting lists for months for substandard care, trying to figure out how to get to the one sliding scale clinic within 60 miles without a car, etc.

The truth is, it often takes someone of privilege to come out to make these issues visible, and like something the rest of us should care about. So hopefully that awareness will have a positive trickle down effect. But it was odd that he didn't even throw in an aside about how he had managed to stay afloat where others end up on the street.
posted by blue suede stockings at 7:08 PM on December 23, 2013 [15 favorites]


He doesn't explicitly state it, but he seems to have a high level of mindfulness, where he acknowledges his out of control anxiety, and manages to do what has to be done in spite of it.

It could also be a bit that his family has been guiding him into his career and so on, so the path of least resistance is to actually do stuff.
posted by empath at 7:14 PM on December 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


Not being upper-middle-class does not lead you to a less anxious world if you are prone to anxiety. You just trade the anxiety over achievement for the anxiety over whether you're going to make your rent payment this month.

I mean, I see mine as a really big deal but still manage to hold down a job, and keep a roof over my head, and stuff like that. In a lot of ways I've gotten lucky, but then in a lot of ways I've had really terrible luck so the two things tend to even themselves out. Privilege is a very big thing, but coming from a privileged background doesn't mean you're insulated from having a serious mental health problem. How often do we see famous, fortunate people committing suicide, having substance abuse issues?

When you're caught up with problems like that, you're really not inclined to think about how other people have it worse.
posted by Sequence at 7:14 PM on December 23, 2013 [6 favorites]


Not to downplay how common anxiety disorder is but from what I've been told, General Anxiety Disorder is the most common diagnosis in the US because insurance companies frequently require a diagnosis on a first session of therapy. GAD is general enough that it can apply to many people and a more accurate diagnosis frequently requires longer than the first session. (Note: I don't approve of this, but its pretty common)
posted by Jernau at 7:17 PM on December 23, 2013


I would spend every waking minute convinced I was making a fool out of myself.

Your great-grandpa was not the dean of Harvard and J.F.K.'s American government prof.
posted by Diablevert at 7:21 PM on December 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'm really baffled by the idea that his anxiety makes him more productive, because my anxiety is not anywhere in the same universe as his, and it is utterly clear to me that it makes me much less productive than I would otherwise be.

One of the things I've come to terms with recently was that much of what I have accomplished, academically and professionally, has come as a result of anxiety-- that constant darkness looming over the horizon of, "If you don't get this right, you will be a failure and your life will be ruined!" and I was willing to make a lot of particularly social, but also economic sacrifices to get what I wanted. I always associated anxiety with "that person who is making everyone's life difficult because he/she is too afraid to get on an airplane/visit that neighborhood or is constantly warning people about what 'might go wrong.'" But then while sitting in a psychiatrist's office after I had messed up some aspect of my life (again) with a big meltdown, he hit me with, "What you are describing is anxiety."

The social class aspect of it comes in where hanging out on Cape Cod with members of the Kennedy family is well within his comfort zone. For him, it's just "what you do" (maybe after having a few drinks to calm the nerves). His professional life is part of "what you do", so he just accepts whatever treatment and medication or other substances necessary to "do it" and consciously avoids anything relating to his phobias and worries that he doesn't strictly have to do to accomplish his goals. He uses the analogy of the duck-- it looks like it is calmly floating by, but underneath the surface there's the feverish paddling of webbed feet.

Back when I was in high school, my classmates said I was being a "stressmonger." I once stopped taking my meds because I didn't feel "motivated" anymore, because I associated motivation with that vicious fight-or-flight reflex. My problems aren't even a fraction of his, which is why I always thought I was "fine," just a little more motivated and focused than others. But I see where he's coming from. I can't imagine how he dealt with getting married and carrying on these public speaking engagements, but I assume he just tells himself, "I will be a failure as a person and a professional if I don't do these things!" so he figures out a way.
posted by bright colored sock puppet at 7:23 PM on December 23, 2013 [9 favorites]


I'm really baffled by the idea that his anxiety makes him more productive, because my anxiety is not anywhere in the same universe as his, and it is utterly clear to me that it makes me much less productive than I would otherwise be.

A good example of a lesser degree of anxiety helping people get stuff done might be a student who waits till the day before a test to start studying. Without that degree of anxiety, the studying might not happen otherwise. Mind you, this isn't the best way of coping with academic pressure. My old abnormal psychology professor explained this, and then went on to self disclose that he was one of the people who relied on that stress and anxiety to get stuff done. He explained that it was like intellectual rocket fuel to him, dirty but powerful.
posted by Jernau at 7:28 PM on December 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's funny, I don't really have anxiety in this particular sense, mine's the normal things people get anxious about.

However, where I connected with him was: I have stomach issues of a similar sort (not anxiety related, but the "I ate something that didn't agree with it so We Need To Find A Bathroom Now Or It's Just Happening Right Here" sort) and I totally understand how his life revolves around the need to be close to one. In my case, I quit going on family vacations as soon as I was too big to pick up and put in the car, because my parents were of the "just hold it, we're making good time" sort so there were a few too many close calls for my taste. And then the normal high school things, but with a twist, like "Do I go to this party at someone's house when a hundred people are going to be there and they'll maybe have two bathrooms and I may need to Unleash the Kraken and then do the walk out in front of my entire math class?" His thing at Kennedy's is sort of darkly funny in a "here I am reading my own personal horror story" (nothing that bad but I have done the "totally destroy a bathroom, say my goodbyes, and hope to never see that person again" exit).

So that's where I came to understand just a little bit what he and all my friends with anxiety are going through. And it's terrible, which I knew, but I didn't KNOW.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 7:36 PM on December 23, 2013


I'm reading The Sports Gene, which I find mesmerizing, and one of the interesting passages in it is about how the Met version of the COMT gene seems to correlate with doing better and having less metabolic effort for cognitive tasks, as well as increased proneness to anxiety and sensitivity to pain. That book also says anxiety and pain sensitivity are strongly correlated.

I can definitely see that - if not particularly pain sensitivity so much as sensitivity to and hyperawareness of all sensation. I've been thinking about this a bit today since the nocebo thread, because I've been dealing with this chronic eyelid twitch lately that, like all of my anxiety-related tics and aches and sensations, only ever happens when I'm thinking about it or thinking it's indicative of something serious (basically every minor twitch is obviously impending ALS for certain types of anxiety, the blurry line between run-of-the-mill generalized anxiety and hypochondria is really annoying). It makes a lot of sense that some answers lie at the intersection of this hypersensitivity and the nocebo effect where every little sensation that people don't normally notice is so very clearly A Big Deal in your mind, and the most effective anxiety-alleviating drugs I've been on are sedatives that are touted for their calming effects, but also dull sensation, or at least the hypersensitivity to it...

The weird thing with the sensitivity is that normal, or above-average pain? Not really any more sensitive to it than anyone else. But little stuff nobody else would notice? Totally noticeable. Ditto stuff like equilibrium - a minor shift in sinus pressure will send me reeling and make me think I'm about to pass out or something, but spinning around in circles? Not even remotely remarkable, just plain ol' dizziness.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:42 PM on December 23, 2013 [4 favorites]


Is this common? For people to see their anxiety as crippling...but to still lead full, active lives? Are they then incorrect about the intensity of their anxiety, or have they just been given a tool that makes living around the anxiety possible?

For me, anxiety is like a tornado -- I can act like I'm not anxious most of the time, and I can feel like I'm not anxious most of the time, and then suddenly, wham, the roof of the house is shredded and all the trees are down. Metaphorically speaking. If you spend even, like, 20 minutes a week just howling with despair -- if it's on the bus, or it's at work, or you disturb your friends and roommates -- then that can feel intensely crippling. And then for the rest of the time you can hold yourself together and be okay, or make things look okay.

And I do realize that that's a qualitatively different experience from someone whose anxiety is severe enough that it really circumscribes their life. But it's always there, in the back of your mind, knowing you might be much closer than you realize to just falling apart.
posted by Jeanne at 7:56 PM on December 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


There is nothing redemptive about chronic social anxiety. Nothing worth sharing.
posted by Halogenhat at 8:00 PM on December 23, 2013 [4 favorites]


Also, I can understand that with no apparent way to cure it he has to come to terms with anxiety in his life, but I wish he hadn't ended with the thought that the anxiety had somehow enabled him to do things he would not have been able to accomplish otherwise.

Hey, more power to him, I guess. It sounds like he has tried literally everything on the planet to manage his anxiety, and if this is what gives him peace, I don't want to belittle that.

But, as we see in the SSRI debate that we all know and love, it's not a good approach for everyone, and it can actively harm some people to think that their anxiety is motivating them. I know this line of thought is awful for me, for example.
posted by chainsofreedom at 8:02 PM on December 23, 2013


I have some backwards wiring: instead of sweating, flushing, and increased heart rate, I slow down. My respiratory rate decreases. My face feels as if it is hanging off of my skull; expressions become impossible. I find it difficult to stand upright and if I am foolish enough to keep exposing myself to whatever stimulus, I end up draped across whatever surface I was near, limp for some time. I can only describe it as suddenly having a bunch of Dementors pile into my vehicle like the reverse of a clown car.

Neither Xanax or Valium have managed to touch it. I've had a lot of missed events and slurred, unconvincing excuses. I am not sure what the heck to do.
posted by adipocere at 8:17 PM on December 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


Just, Wow.

Are there that many people that suffer from this? Judging by the responses, far more than I would have imagined. And to a greater extent than I imagined.

I've had anxiety and depression, I suppose I still do, but not to this degree. My sympathies to all of those affected.
posted by Uncle Grumpy at 8:22 PM on December 23, 2013


Just, Wow.

Are there that many people that suffer from this? Judging by the responses, far more than I would have imagined. And to a greater extent than I imagined.


I've backed off from sharing my own experience in threads like this (for a variety of sweetkid-specific reasons -nothing wrong with others doing it and it's often helpful) but since it was asked, yeah I've had anxiety and depression and common recurrences of both, but especially the anxiety. A lot of people don't even notice when it's going on, for me (also a response to "how can you still get through life and still have bad anxiety" - sometimes people don't even notice, and it's such a part of you you can manage it in some way).

Everyone is different and experiences are different, but for me anxiety is physically painful, which can make it so unbearable. I definitely had it my whole life but didn't know what it was until I was in my late 20s. I thought a lot of things were normal that are not.

Not to tell anyone that I've found an answer, but talk therapy, hypnotherapy, and Klonopin have helped me, SSRIs and other antidepressants have not so much, and more unusual/nonclinical things I've found to work are very low carb, low sugar dieting and of course exhausting exercise.
posted by sweetkid at 8:32 PM on December 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


Oh yea I don't have social anxiety like the author of this OP has and people commenting in the thread - it's different stuff.
posted by sweetkid at 8:41 PM on December 23, 2013


Not to tell anyone that I've found an answer, but talk therapy, hypnotherapy, and Klonopin have helped me, SSRIs and other antidepressants have not so much, and more unusual/nonclinical things I've found to work are very low carb, low sugar dieting and of course exhausting exercise.

SSRIs help me riiight up to the point that they start making me feel dizzy and unsteady and kinda zombified a few months in, and then those sensations just become triggers. Bleh.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:53 PM on December 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


I couldn't even finish reading this article--it was pretty triggering. Literally felt my own anxiety kick in, teeth clenching and heart rate speed up. It's amazing that the author has managed to have a life in spite of his level of anxiety.
posted by so much modern time at 9:14 PM on December 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


I view anxiety much like I view death - a completely evil bastard who is always going to win.

Anxiety is just a little less powerful than that fucker, death. I can take xanax to stave off the anxiety bastard, but that death mother fucker is always gonna win. I hate 'em both!
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 9:21 PM on December 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm really baffled by the idea that his anxiety makes him more productive, because my anxiety is not anywhere in the same universe as his, and it is utterly clear to me that it makes me much less productive than I would otherwise be.

Different situations yield different results for me.

Before I got my work anxiety reined in I would work nights and weekends constantly to stay ahead of my inevitable firing. I once got a $5000 spot bonus and was convinced they gave it to me to soften the blow of letting me go in a few days.

Now social anxiety, that completely messed up my ability to function and to some degree still does. I can address groups of people formally or informally, but I can't look to the left while doing it (it's amazing how many people pick up on that) and I simply skip any meeting with more than 15 people in it. Infinitely better than it was, but still...
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 12:17 AM on December 24, 2013 [7 favorites]


> I wish he hadn't ended with the thought that the anxiety had somehow enabled him to do things he would not have been able to accomplish otherwise.

I had the same feeling—it's a well-written article but very long, perhaps too long, and that section was definitely the weakest and should have been severely cut (I mean, come on: "The literary gifts of Emily Dickinson, for example, were inextricably bound up with her reclusiveness, which some say was a product of anxiety.... When Sir Isaac Newton invented calculus, he didn’t publicize his work for 20 years—because, some conjecture, he was too anxious and depressed to tell anyone.... But some evidence suggests that excessive worrying is itself allied to intelligence.... Some commentators have suggested...)—but chainsofreedom has a good and charitable response: "Hey, more power to him, I guess. It sounds like he has tried literally everything on the planet to manage his anxiety, and if this is what gives him peace, I don't want to belittle that."

Anyway, thanks for posting it. I'm sorry some commenters have thought it necessary to belittle him and his experiences because he didn't have the good grace to be born poor and without resources (he hangs out with Kennedys, fuck him!), but that's MeFi for you.
posted by languagehat at 7:15 AM on December 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Refreshing to see such honesty regarding a subject that many keep private. Nice read.

-----

2 people. One with anxiety issues. He never told anyone.

They'd known each other for about a year. Just as friends. She noticed he had an annoying habit of putting things off. Promises were made and never fulfilled. At parties he would disappear. He seemed opaque.

You never do anything she said.

I am doing something he replied.
Surviving.
posted by Bighappyfunhouse at 8:11 AM on December 24, 2013 [5 favorites]


This piece also shows how anxiety is a familial disease and is passed down through generations. We as a society are only just getting out of the trauma of WWII and of archaic, in humane child rearing methods ("spare the rod spoil the child").
posted by St. Peepsburg at 10:20 AM on December 24, 2013


and I do realize that that's a qualitatively different experience from someone whose anxiety is severe enough that it really circumscribes their life. But it's always there, in the back of your mind, knowing you might be much closer than you realize to just falling apart.

Thank you for articulating what I wanted to say about my own experience. For me, it's mainly waiting for the other shoe to drop that is crippling.

There is nothing redemptive about chronic social anxiety. Nothing worth sharing.

The first part, maybe. The second part, dead wrong. Anxiety is common, and knowing that other people suffer the same thing goes a long way towards helping to deal with it.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:22 AM on December 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


I'm sorry some commenters have thought it necessary to belittle him and his experiences because he didn't have the good grace to be born poor and without resources (he hangs out with Kennedys, fuck him!), but that's MeFi for you.

Unhelpful paraphrase alert.


Class consciousness isn't class warfare; gender consciousness isn't misandry; race consciousness isn't "reverse racism." It's an unspoken aspect to this story that would have only enhanced the narrative had he tipped his hat to it. Those who picked up on it were sure to express compassion, and underlined the fact that they were not minimizing his (considerable) suffering by mentioning it.

It's terrible how insensitive, minimizing, disbelieving, and unsympathetic society is to wealthy white men when they tell their stories.
posted by blue suede stockings at 11:35 AM on December 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


This piece also shows how anxiety is a familial disease and is passed down through generations.

I know this is the case for my family. Unfortunately, taking care of myself means not being able to spend much time around them, because it just makes everything flare up and leaves me on the floor of the kitchen fetal position. It's a pernicious terrible familial disease, and I feel overwhelming guilt about only being able to save myself.
posted by stoneweaver at 11:45 AM on December 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Propranolol doesn't seem to have this effect on me. But having taken hydrocodone for pain, I've experienced its primary side effect for me...I become a person who can cope. And know that it is addictive, can destroy your liver, etc, keeps me from it. And so I find myself hoping I'll be in pain so I can take something to help me function. /flailing
posted by datawrangler at 7:41 PM on December 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


bluesuedestockings: It was odd that he didn't even throw in an aside about how he had managed to stay afloat where others end up on the street.

That's a valid point; there's no denying that social and fiscal capital shape what happens to us. As a person who struggles with depression, I found it refreshing when Andrew Solomon, in The Noonday Demon, acknowledged his advantages in being wealthy, white, male and educated, and gave less-privileged people room to relate their own experiences with depression.

That said, Scott Stossel's Atlantic article is apparently an excerpt from an upcoming book (it would have been nice if the piece's extensive bio lines -- scroll down -- had mentioned it), so I'm prepared to give him the benefit of the doubt.
posted by virago at 10:14 AM on December 26, 2013


Anxiety is terrible. For me it made so many things in my last relationship hard for me. Causing my partner to leave in frustration.
posted by OwlBoy at 8:29 PM on December 26, 2013


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