TAKING A STAND: AN ADOLESCENT GIRL'S RESISTANCE TO MEDICATION

Authors

  • Jacqueline A. Sparks

    Corresponding author
    1. Nova Southeastern University
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    • Jacqueline A. Sparks, Department of Family Therapy, Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Nova Southeastern University.


  • I thank Dr. Barry Duncan for his invaluable asistance throughout this project and for teaching me much abot taking a stand.

Correspondence concerning this article should be sent to Jacqueline A. Sparks, Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Nova Southeastern University, 3301 College Ave., Fort Lauderdale, FL 33314. E-mail: sparksj@nova.edu.

Abstract

Therapists and clients encounter pressure to seek medication for adolescent depression and dangerous behaviors. A review of current research indicates that medical practitioners prescribe antidepressants for adolescents despite questionable efficacy, side effects, and frequent refusal. Adolescent girls' expressions of distress expose them to systems that promote medication prescription. A critical look at medical, gender, and adolescent discourses sheds light on drug prescription as standard practice and highlights its impact on adolescent girls' agency, voice, and community connection. Resistance to medication is reconsidered as an act of personal and political choice. Amy, a 16-year-old girl, and her therapist describe strategies for managing depression without medication.

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