There are a lot of differences between Germany and America and one of them is how to deal with stuff like depression, anxieties, well, health in general. The Germans are more of the “suck-it-up, take-an-aspirin, take-a-nap”-school of medicine. We are a people who swear by the healing powers of wraps soaked in ice water, cayenne rubs and suppositories. AND we have universal health care! Americans, well, if you don’t have insurance you can pretty much go fuck yourself, but if you have insurance, or money, there are these limits on what gets covered and what not and self -medicating is the way to go. Feeling depressed? Here, have a pill.
That can’t be right and I think that a lot of American perspectives on health are really directed towards battling the symptoms and not looking at the underlying causes.
Anyway, Salon has an interview with Robert Whitaker on the history of mental illness that is worth reading.