Oct 012014

This distaste that people still have for the idea of treatment [of depression], the notion that somehow if we went out and treated a lot of people in indigent communities, that would be an exploitative thing to do, because we would be changing them. There is this false moral imperative that seems to be all around us that treatment of depression, the medications and so on, are an artifice, and that it’s not natural. And I think that’s very misguided. It would be natural for people’s teeth to fall out, but there is nobody militating against toothpaste. And people then say, “Well, but isn’t depression part of what people are supposed to experience? Didn’t we evolve to have depression? Isn’t it part of your personality?” To which I would say, mood is adaptive. Being able to have sadness and fear and joy and pleasure and all of the other moods that we have, that’s incredibly valuable. And major depression is something that happens when that system gets broken. It’s maladaptive.

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