This is the fourth of a series of blog posts on the context behind my Physics World article: A physicist’s experience of the mental-health system. There is a lot of backstory. So during the editing process, I sent documents to the editor to help explain some of the views I express in the article. I have decided to add them as blog posts.

This blog post discusses why Alex decided not to include information about their use of Venlafaxine between 2016-2019 in their Physics World article about their experiences with the mental-health system. Alex explains that the drug did not give them much benefit and may have even made their condition worse. He also felt that including even a brief mention of Venlafaxine would have confused the reader and distracted from the points they were trying to make. The post goes on to discuss the complexity of antidepressants and the importance of understanding their binding affinities for different receptors. Alex believes that misinformation about antidepressants led to their prescription of Venlafaxine.

I didn’t want the fact that I took Venlafaxine between 2016-2019 to be in the PhysicsWorld article.

I left it out for reasons I hope will be made clear in this blog post. It was difficult, perhaps impossible, to include without a lot of background information and the drug did not give me much, if any benefit. I actually think it made my condition worse. 

It is true that I believed that I could achieve remission solely through psychotherapeutic methods during the PhD and also true that I actually require medication to treat my illness.

I feel including even a short mention of Venlafaxine would have confused the reader and distract from the points I was trying to make later on. I hope this is made clear in the following story:

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