This risks sounding like a humblebrag (at least to anyone living with a cat that prefers to keep distance) but I legit wonder why Dean just doesn't hold a grudge about the many pills and meds Melissa and I have to ply him with.
He clearly doesn't LIKE any of it, and will slink away and hide a little when he reads we're getting ready to dose him, and then meow complainingly once or twice when we grab him anyway (but mercifully, not really fight.) But then, 10-20 minutes later - even after the insult of a chemo pill popper he's as cuddly as ever.
Hopefully the simpler answers - he likes us, and likes snuggling - is enough, that I shouldn't be so amazed at his ability to compartmentalize a bit, and it's not like "if I get closer maybe they'll stop this abuse" or anything. (Or maybe the other simple answer... he's not ALL that bright of a cat :-)
Ha... actually his appetite stimulant, Mirtazapine, is also an anti-depressant. Maybe that helps :-D
I mean no need to overthink it now, though understanding it now would maybe help understanding and planning if something changed...