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Glasgow1: introducing myself


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Hi i would like to introduce myself my name is Glasgow 1. I have been reading lots of posts from this site for many months but just joined today.I have been on antidepressants half my life i started when i was 21 due to stress causing me some anxiety and i am still on meds today at age 46.i have went through a separation which was a complete shock to me and has made me really depressed.I am now determined to get of these meds.I have tried before and had 2 breakdowns but please note this was not by using the 10 percent method.I take parnate which unfortunately has popped out and i think its time again to try and reduce these meds.I know this will take me a long time but i dont want to feel the same way in another 10 years.I wish you all success on your journey and am  looking forward to getting to know everyone on this journey as i know how alone it feels.

STARTED ANTIDEPRESSANTS 1992 : have took many antidepressents     Present drugs ; Parnate 50mgs ( 2011 )Lithium 750mgs (late march 2017.)Started tapering april 2017.                                                                                                                         Supplements : fish oil ,vitamin b,magnesium

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Glasgow and finally welcome to SA,


I imagine you have been doing a fair bit a reading around the site since you have been a member since June 2016.  However, I'll give you some topic links as we usually do just in case you may not have seen some of them.


Please create a drug signature Create Your Signature.  Please include details for the last 12-18 months of  all drugs, dates, doses and discontinuations & reinstatements.  If you can't remember dates, please write it as "early March" or "mid-August".  Please provide a summary of any drugs prior to that which can just be listed with start and stop years. Please include all prescription, non-prescription drugs and supplements you are currently taking. Phone Instructions:  Withdrawal History Signature. Please also remember to update it with date and dose whenever make a change so that it remains current. Thank you.


Before you begin tapering what you need to know

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?


Dr Joseph Glenmullen's Withdrawal Symptoms


How do you talk to a doctor about tapering and withdrawal?

What should I expect from my doctor about withdrawal symptoms?


Some people find that the lower their dose gets the slower they need to go:


Why taper paper: dose-occupancy curves


These really helped me to understand SA's recommended taper of no more than 10% of the previous dose followed by about a 4 week hold to allow the brain to adapt to not getting as much of the drug.  They have also helped me to remain patient and not try and hurry my taper:


Brain Remodelling

Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery


It's a good idea to learn non-drug coping techniques:


Non-drug techniques to cope


Claire Weekes' Method of Recovering from a Sensitized Nervous System


This is your own Intro topic where you can ask questions about your own situation and journal your progress.  If you click "Follow" top right you will receive notification when someone responds.


MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:  (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq  on 13th November 2021

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I am not familiar with the drug you are taking.  One of the other mods might know about your drug.  What form does it come in?  How are you planning on getting the dose you need?


It is important not to skip days to taper but to take the same dose at about the same time very day.


MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:  (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq  on 13th November 2021

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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  • Moderator

Hi Glasgow1--  Welcome to the group. I'm very glad you found us.  Even though you've had problems getting off the drug in the past it's still possible.  Now that you know about the 10% method and have seen a lot of the other information we have you should be able to come up with a very workable plan for gaining your freedom.  Chessie gave you a number of good links, you've probably already read them as you've been lurking for a while, but they stand up well to rereading.


Chessie-- it's an MAOI.  Drugs.com has a nice concise write up on it.  https://www.drugs.com/cdi/parnate.html

20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Final Dose 0.016mg.     Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017


"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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Hi, I have heard of Parnate, you have to be careful with food when you take it, don't you?


I understand it can be difficult to get off Parnate, just like the SSRI's.  I once looked after a very elderly lady, late 90s in age, and she was dying basically.  She had been prescribed Parnate as a young woman for PND and had remained on it, she had made several attempts to get off it, with her GP's help, but each time returned to taking it, and then her GP said she had to remain on it.


This saddened her a great deal towards the end of her life.  However, in those years no one ever tapered antidepressants, it just didn't happen, it was usually stopped over 1 - 2 weeks and that was considered being very careful!  Things have changed, and therein lies your hope for success.


It is apparently a very good antidepressant, but I have never taken it.  I took dothiepin for years, but it never really helped, and now take citalopram, which I think has been better for me, but I am keen to get my own mind/body back to see if it has helped or not.


Do you have a lot of support in your family/friends - I don't, but find this site helpful.  Joy


Jan 2023 to July 2023 250mg quetiapine

Tapered off quetiapine again over 2 months - now weight problem

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hi jo i dont really have much support as my family thinks i should keep taking this drug but they don't read much on the dangers of antidepressants and believe what a doctor says is best.I have been taking these long enough to reliase what they have done to me.Im glad i have found this site also i have been so scared to withdraw from these drugs but i am  determined this time i am going to take it extremely slowly.It might take me years but i will keep fighting 

STARTED ANTIDEPRESSANTS 1992 : have took many antidepressents     Present drugs ; Parnate 50mgs ( 2011 )Lithium 750mgs (late march 2017.)Started tapering april 2017.                                                                                                                         Supplements : fish oil ,vitamin b,magnesium

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Glasgow, Welcome and glad you found this site. Like others stated above, it is definitely possible to successfully taper. It's unfortunate that your family isn't supportive … But you will find a lot of support here on this site. 




2020: After 18+ years (entire adult life) on Paxil, a dangerous doctor-led "taper" in 2015, and four years tapering off the last 1 mg thanks to SA and the Brassmonkey slide, 

I AM COMPLETELY FREE OF PAXIL! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Forever.


2021: Began conservative, proper, CNS-respecting taper of Zoloft, led by the only expert on me -- me. Making own liquid. 5-10% plus holds.

2022: Holding on Zoloft for now. Current dose 47 mg. Hanging in, hanging on. Severe protracted PAWS, windows and waves. While I may not be doing "a lot" by outside standards, things are graaaaadually getting better


Yoga (gentle to medium); walks; daily breath practice; nutrition, fruits/veg; nature; water; EastEnders (lol); practicing self-compassion, self-care; boundaries; connection; allowing feelings; t r u s t ing that I, too, will heal. (--> may need to be reminded of this.)

"You are not alone, and this is not the end of your story." - Baylissa

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hey Glasgow - welcome to SA!


You asked me in PM - 


what advice if you dont mind me asking you would you give me for success many thanks


I wish I could say it's one thing, but it's a hundred things.


GiaK http://www.beyondmeds.com says, "Everything matters."


Practice is my big word.  


It doesn't matter what your practice is - maybe it's balancing a matchstick on the end of your nose until you get really good at it.  But more likely, you will be helped by all the boring stuff - like meditation, gentle exercise like tai chi or yoga, even weightlifting.  Diet is important - finding what foods keep you well and stable, what foods knock you into the deep end.  Art and music can be nourishment, too. 


Practice practice practice.


Do something every day.  The same thing, preferably at the same time every day.  My prescription Practice started with a 10 minute sun walk.  Every day.  Sunlight, seeing green trees and grass and birds.  Walking up a hill, then down it again.  Just 10 minutes (so I had no excuse not to do it)  This past year, I've added a little 5 minute tai chi routine - with my bare feet on the grass, and facing the sun.  So 15 minutes of sunlight, moving my joints.


It helps remind me that the world is not as bleak as I might perceive it.  I live in a dark house (that's considered beneficial in our hot summers), but if I stay inside - I won't know that it's a beautiful day with light sea breezes.  I have to step outside to do that.


Whatever practice you are attracted to - do it every day.  Make it easy, pleasurable, or even fun.  


Over time, I've added some larger practices:  play the piano or work at my art table once a week.  Go to yoga, karate, or weightlifting 2x a week (it changes, depending on what I need most).  Whole food smoothies after exercise.  Magnesium baths 2x a week.   Call or meet a friend once a week.  Listen to music every day.  Pat my cat, and open myself up to being more compassionate towards her.  Practice kindness with my husband, practice gratitude with the rest of my life.   Fish oil.  Magnesium.  Zinc.  Selenium. (these are for me, your mileage may vary)


Some days you will feel awful.  Some days you will feel better.  In the times you are strong, plan for the times you are weak.


A Practice helps to build up a "bank account" that you can draw upon in the rough times.  If you are thrashing about in miserable suffering, your Practice may not feel like it's working.  It doesn't matter.  Just keep Practicing.  You will build up even if you don't notice it.


Realize it's all temporary.  It will pass. The awful times will pass.   The good times will pass too.  Remember to use the good times to help yourself (but don'r overdo, or the bad times will crash down faster), remember that the bad times are temporary.  Waves and Windows


Even if your healing is slow - it is healing.  Look to the horizon, the big picture.  Also - look at the tiny things, for pleasure.  I learned that there is a phrase for this, "hedonic rehabilitation."  Using pleasure to guide you.


Chances are, that if it feels really good to eat an avocado - then avocados are good for you.  But if you binge on sugar and are sick for days - then that's not pleasure - that's pain.  The sugar is hurting you.  Listen to your body.


I know that's a lot of stuff - but to me, it took many little things, all combined together like a weaving to make a basket for me to heal.


Also - look to the little things - gratitude.  Maybe today it is gratitude that you have enough to eat.  Maybe you only see one beautiful picture on the internet - be grateful for each little thing which makes you feel better.  Acknowledging each tiny one will help you string them together like a pearl necklace, and also builds you up in preparation for the next good thing.


I'm sorry to hear your family doesn't support you in this endeavor.  Many people have tapered successfully here without any support - but I've found it helpful to have a spouse who listens (even when he doesn't quite understand, he listens) - I also have an acupuncturist and massage therapist who supported my taper.  I bullied my psychiatrist into tapering, she at least read Robert Whitaker's excellent "Anatomy of an Epidemic," and then said "pooh-pooh, he's just a journalist full of meta-studies."  But I told her I was going to do it - and - I'd rather work with her (since she'd known me for 10 years) than start over with a new doctor.  I gave her an ultimatum:  if you're not with me, I'll go somewhere else.  She signed on.  My psychologist didn't believe me at first, either.  She also read Robert Whitaker's book, and as she started to see her own clients flipping into manic episodes and anxiety from the antidepressants, she gradually came over to my side.  As she saw me getting clearer and better, she started writing glowing letters to my psychiatrist.  THEN, the psychiatrist couldn't ignore that I was getting better off the drugs than I was on the drugs.


The psychiatrist still believes in drugs and drugging - I have been dismissed from her care for about 8 months now.  Last I heard, she was learning about "psychiatric acupuncture," so maybe she is seeking to use more non-drug therapies.  But when the psychologist started talking about how well I was doing - the psychiatrist pretty much had to go along.  One professional to another, and all that.


But - my practitioners were exceptional.  Even the psychiatrist had studied with Stanislov Grof, who practices a more trauma based, non-drug method of dealing with extreme states.  MOST practitioners only see things as "symptoms, diagnoses, and prescriptions."


If you can get ONE person to read either Robert Whitaker's "Anatomy of an Epidemic," or - "The Pill that Steals Lives," by Katinka Blackford Newman (I found both of these in my local library), then you might have an ally.  Someone to help you fight.  Getting angry helps - but remember - when you talk to doctors and friends - it's important to display that you are in control.  Even when you are suffering.  It's hard, but an essential part of not getting drugged more.


Here's our tips on what to work on while you are getting ready to taper:

Before You Begin Taper - What you Should Know


You are in a really ideal position to control the whole process from the very beginning.  The bigger doses are easier to adjust, as they get down to the smaller doses, it gets harder.


So use your first tapers to "get used to the idea" of liquids, or scales, and the 10% rule.  There will be mistakes - we all made them!  As you get down to the more critical doses, you will be good at the tapers.


I'm one of the rare ones who came here at the beginning of my tapers - like you.  (yes, I'd tried in the past, but using disastrous techniques, and they failed).  I had a relatively uneventful taper.  A few bounces along the way - but I could control it.  Stressful trip?  Hold.  Meeting someone new?  Hold.  Open time where I've got time to rest and adjust?  Great time to drop by 10%!


So this post is all over the place - but you only asked the biggest question that you could!  I hope that you find something in here that is useful to you!


One more set of links with great summaries of how this works, what to expect, what others have done, and the way toward the distant horizon (oh yes:  patience.  Patience, too!)

Intro to Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome

Healing from Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery (by Toxic Antidepressants)

Withdrawal Dialogues - cartoons to encourage you


Six Mistakes I've Made In Withdrawal


And - I hope you see the Sun today!

"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna


Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.


My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.


A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.

The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/



I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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I would say slowness was the best thing, take things slowly, and then even slower than you think.  That is a built in safeguard against hitting really bad withdrawal symptoms, you will probably still have symptoms, just not as bad.


Jan 2023 to July 2023 250mg quetiapine

Tapered off quetiapine again over 2 months - now weight problem

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