Seeking expert counseling is a sign of strength. A personal relationship with a caring professional is proven clinically effective.
I believe that I can help.
I agree that most antidepressants leave many people feeling like zombies.
There are a few medications that might help and there are other options as well.
Bupropion (Wellbutrin) is one medication that does not cause weight gain and is a lot less intrusive than a lot of the other medications in the way that you describedl.
There are other non-drug approaches to this problem which I will discuss.
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) may be offered to you. It passes electrical currents (small) through the brain, affecting neurotransmitter levels. It usually offers immediate relief of severe depression and is used on individuals who don't respond to medications, and also to those who cannot take the strong effects of the medications, such as pregnant women and the elderly. It can cause some temporary memory loss but it is usually restored fairly quickly.
Another option is the implantation of a micro-pulse generator that stimulates the vagus nerve to affect the brain's mood centers. This is yet another way of treating chronic depression that is resistant to treatment. This does not put you at the same risk as ECT, and is a viable alternative.
THE VERY BEST OPTION IS:
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, using electromagnets held against your upper forehead to produce an electric current in your brain for the purpose of affecting those same mood centers. This also does not shock your brain. It has been proven very effective.
I see that you are no longer online.
I have given you some excellent advice.
There are things that you can do on your own.
Stop using caffeinated drinks, diet drinks, MSG, or other stimulantsd.
Take plenty of walks or other exercise.
If your depression and anxiety is worse in the winter then buy yourself a SAD (Seasonal affective disorder lamp). SAD is a real diagnosis of depression that worsens in the days of shorter light and more darkness.
Read about SAD.
If I have given you some encouragement and help, I would greatly appreciate your positive feedback. I love helping others and I do this for a living. Thank you so much.
Elliott, LPCC, NCC