Mother’s Little Helper

Why high antidepressant use in Utah?

Utah residents like their antidepressants. Maybe it’s something in the water?

Daniel K. Judd, a BYU professor, says, in effect, “its not our fault!”

This article seems a little too cheerleaderish and glazy (big surprise, Mormon church-owned paper). The elephant in the room that isn’t addressed is that there are reasons for the heavy usage of anti-depressants by Mormon women. And it doesn’t appear the church cares about them, based on this article. I think that would make a great graduate study. At the end of the article, there’s this gem, which will likely not get him fired because it’s not about a political wedge issue:

He also cautioned against perfectionism, acknowledging that LDS culture does lead some members to attempt too much.

“It’s not our theology that’s at fault,” he said during a question-and-answer session. “It’s our culture, at times. The doctrine isn’t, ‘Come unto me, all ye heavy laden, and I’ll give you more to do.’ “

Mormons believe in a lay ministry, where everybody has a job to do. I think he’s dead right that the culture creates an impossible sense of perfectionism that is always hoped for but never achieved. Particularly in dense Mormon populations. I would imagine that is true of other religions as well. There’s a reason that Dana Carvey’s Church Lady resonated so well.