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TroyGirl: Emotional withdrawals beginning


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Hello everyone. I was diagnosed with MDD, GAD and OCD (no ritual just obsessive thoughts) two years ago. It stemmed from a traumatic event. I have since been on 3 ssri's none of which provided any real relief. Zoloft was the only one I tolerated and after a year I made the decision to stop. I made the decision for many reasons....dr and therapist felt I was ready, I suffered side effects the entire time on drug, weight gain, insomnia and I am considering having another baby and refuse to be on drugs while pregnant.


I'm currently on week 4 of no drugs and I've slammed into a wall, HARD! I was doing ok and the physical withdrawals seemed to have subsided but then the mental ones hit. Sheer panic, panic attacks, racing thoughts, fear of being stuck like this forever, fear of never being happy again....the list is endless really.


Really hoping to find support here as I have none at home currently. How do you keep going on the dark bad days? How do you stay the course even when you doubt everything?

Edited by scallywag
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  • Moderator Emeritus

TroyGirl -- Welcome to Surviving Antidepressants (SA)


Many people experience symptoms after a cold-turkey stop of drugs like Zoloft. In fact, going from a regular dose to nothing overnight is practically a guarantee of getting difficult symptoms for at least several weeks.  The pharmaceutical manufacturers, who provide "education" to medical professionals, only admit to there being a brief period of acute symptoms, 4-6 weeks. This site exists because that does not apply universally -- many people suffer much, much longer.


Withdrawal symptoms are difficult. You can search for others' experiences with a specific symptom in the Symptoms forum. Nobody can predict who will have a short recovery period and whose will take months or several years. The only known way to reduce symptoms is to reinstate the medication. It helps many but not all people.


Are you open to reinstating a very low dose -- probably much lower than your last dose -- of Zoloft to stabilize your symptoms? After stabilizing you could taper gradually off that very low dose. For more details, please read:

About reinstating and stabilizing to reduce withdrawal symptoms.


We suggest that people taper by decreasing dose by no more than 10% once per month to minimize the risk of withdrawal symptoms. For more information please read:

Tapering -- what you need to know.

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?.


Here's a topic specifically about Zoloft:

Tips for tapering off Zoloft (sertraline)


Would you post your medication history in a signature that will appear below each of your posts? This allows those of us reading your post to get a quick overview without having to read everything you've previously written. Please include doses and dates when you started a dose, changed a dose or stopped.

Creating a signature

Direct link to signature settings page


I hope you'll find the information in the SA forums helpful for your situation. I'm sorry that you are in the position that you need the information, but am glad that you found us.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.
1997-1999 Effexor; 2002-2005 Effexor XR 37.5 mg linear taper, dropping same #beads/week with bad results

Cymbalta 60 mg 2012 - 2015; 2016: 20 mg to 7 mg exact doses and dates in this post; 2017: 6.3 mg to  0.0 mg  Aug. 12; details here

scallywag's Introduction
Online spreadsheet for dose taper calculations and nz11's THE WORKS spreadsheet

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Maybe it helps if you just try to fake it till you make it. It means that you need to each day try to think new mental exercise that will pull your thought out of that dark place. You can try to remember what kind of thinking you had on bright days. You can start thinking today like something positive about someone or ask for someone else that they will be okey. Tomorrow try to think what can you do good for others in this world (you dont have to really do it but just think). If we have bright days than this thinking is ordinary but when we are down then its difficult and you need to fake it.



2011-2012 Olanzapin (dont remember mg) gained 24 pounds (11 pounds) so had to change to other

2012-2016 Abilify 15mg

2016 August to Oktober after 3 moths beeing free from Abilify the anxiety, manic began

2016 oktober - 2017 januar Olanzapin 5mg, (quited abrubtly syptoms started 2 weeks after quiting: felt manic, no sleep, anxiety for a week then all syptoms subsided)

2016 oktober - 2017 march Abilify 22,5mg (am having also psychotherapy)

2017 13 march - Abilify 18,75mg

2017 13 aprill - Abilify 15 mg

2017 1 May - Abilify  11,25 mg (next lowering 1 June to 7,5 then will begin to take baby steps at lowering) 


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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi TroyGirl,


So sorry you're feeling so terrible. It is just so frightening when all the anxiety and depression comes racing back in force.


How long was your taper off Zoloft? 


And how are you going now? 



Celexa (Citalopram)    40mg  - 60mg - 40mg for 7 years          Tapered (over 3 months) drug-free Aug–Nov 2013 CRASH

40mg    Dec 2013 – Jan 2017 (7 weeks reinstatement hell then relief)

2017:    20mg    30 Jan       18mg   19 April          16mg   6 May          14mg   20 May      12mg  10 Jun

              10mg   7 July          9mg    7 Aug               8mg     16 Oct          7.5mg  27 Nov         

2018:    7mg      8 Jan          6.5mg  12 Feb          6mg  17 Mar            5.2mg  14 Apr      5mg  28 Apr

             4.8mg  4 Jun           4.6mg   23 Jun         4.4mg   24 Jul          4.2mg 13 Aug      4mg  20 Aug

             3.8mg  1 Sep           3.6mg  28 Sep          3.4mg  14 Oct          3.2mg  11 Nov     3mg  5 Dec

             5mg    26 Dec          10mg  28 Dec

Added Valdoxan 25mg   12 Dec 2018      stopped 24 Jan 2019

Wellbutrin 150mg     25 Jan



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