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Maggie Rants [and Raves]

They’re All on Drugs

by Maggie Franklin | March 5, 2014 | Bookmark +

Something that has changed during the time I’ve been doing nails is the proliferation of antidepressants available and the number of people they’re being prescribed to.

I’ve put some effort into understanding selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and how they work, and I’ve known people for whom these drugs are nothing short of miracles. But I’m also one of those folks who sees doctors prescribing them to just about everyone who’s had so much as a bad day and feels maybe — just maybe — not everyone who’s on them is being helped by them.

Yeah, yeah, yeah... totally not about nails, right?

Except when it means that I tend to end up holding hands with a lot of people who are them. Or any number of other mood-altering substances, from caffeine to heroin. (OK, to date, I am unaware of having ever had a client on heroin.)

I think most of us have found ourselves dealing with alcoholic clients — people who think no one knows they’re wasted out of their minds while they slur their speech and can’t sit up straight. Or the client who still reeks of cannabis while she giggles through her appointment.

These clients are usually few and far between, and most of us recognize the signs and know what’s up. But what about the client who’s a completely different person at this appointment than she was at the last one? And completely different again at the next one?

It can be a struggle to cope with the Dr. Jeckyll/Mr. Hydes that march through my life these days. The over-medicated, the under-medicated, the self-diagnosed adult ADDs and bipolars that have decided they get a free pass on poor behavior because they’ve decided they have something they probably don’t... the ones who probably do have something but don’t want to know about it... and the ones who are just plain sad and stressed out to the point where they can’t hold a normal conversation anymore.

These days, I have to bear in mind when I find myself holding someone’s hand and wondering how this person could possibly be so different from who she was the last time I saw her, that approximately 20% of women in my target demographic take at least one type of antidepressant — that doesn’t even begin to touch on the number of people taking pain management medications or a combination of both.

I miss the days when people behaving inconsistently was a rarer thing and the reasons were easier to figure out.

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