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Seeking interview participants for PhD research on psych med withdrawal


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Dear SA community,


My name is Naomi Zucker, and I am working on my PhD in cultural anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania. I’m writing my dissertation about psychiatric medication, with a focus on discontinuation and withdrawal. Broadly, I’m interested in the gaps between how mainstream psychiatry understands and talks about these drugs and how people who take them actually experience them. 


I am currently recruiting participants to interview about their experiences with medication and withdrawal. The interviews will take place over Zoom (or phone/another platform if you prefer), and usually take about 1-2 hours. In the interview, I will ask questions about your experiences taking and stopping medication; going through withdrawal; and seeking support, information, and care. Your privacy will be fully protected, and your name or any other identifying features will not be included in my work. 


If you are interested in being interviewed, please message me here on SA. If you have any questions, I am happy to discuss via email, DM, or on the phone. Please also feel free to share my contact information with anyone else you know who might be interested in participating.


Thank you so much, and looking forward to talking with you!





Edited by ChessieCat
masked e-mail address / added note re email addy
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  • Administrator

Thanks, Naomi. This sounds like it will be a fascinating paper.


I removed your e-mail address so you wouldn't get spammed. You can give people your e-mail address if they send you a personal message, or display it on your profile, which bots cannot view.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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  • Administrator

Please do NOT post e-mail addresses in public forums! Spammers will collect them.


You may exchange e-mail addresses in personal messages.

This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Naomi--I would appreciate sharing my information and hope it could be useful.  I'm not sure how to use the personal message, but please contact me so that I can give you my e-mail address.


Zoloft: 1995 - 2015

Prozac: 2015 - 2018 (tapered from 40mg x day on July 31 to 30mg on August 31 to 20mg on September 31 to 10mg October 31 to 0mg on  December 15, 2018

Gabapentin: 2016 to 2019  (tapered from 300mg x day to 150mg on August 31, 2019 to 75mg on September 15 to 50mg on September 31 to 25ishmg on October 15 to 0mg on December 1, 2019

Enalapril: 2010 - 2019

Lipitor: 2017 -2017

Metformin: 2000 - 2020

Liothyronine: 2007 - 2019

Levothyroxine: 2000 - 2022

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Dear Naomi,

I Appreciate Very much.

Yes,I am interest to participate.

Cold turkeyed risperidone (1m.g)and trihexyphenidyl combination drug out of ignorance,In August 2016 after one month use.

Withdrawal symptoms settled at dreamful,disturbing sleep.

Thus introduced to olanzapine for sleep.Started using olanzapine out of ignorance.

Tapering olanzapine 10 m.g from February 2017.

May 2018 :Still suffering dreams,Still tapering olanzapine at 0.625.100ml water+2.5 mg olanzapine. June 2018 22.5ml=0.57mg.July 2018 20ml,August 2018-17.5ml,September 2018-15ml,October 2018 10 ml,December 2018 7 ml, BrassMonkey slide method so far at lower doses.2 nd December cold turkeyed , only to reach minure doses as reinstatement to cutshort endless tapering process.4rth December started 1ml.

Almost no symptoms and sleep is better,So started 0.5 ml from 17-12-2018.

"0"from31-12-18.Re birth happened from 10- 2020,as rejuvenation took whole2019.Completely recovered now.

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Dear Naomi,

I am very much interested to participate .

I hope this will bring  out something good in the crooked world of psychiatry.


Thanks @rupa for letting me know about this thread.

08/13 - 01/14
Olanzapine, petril MD (Clonazepam ), Dicorate ER (divalproex). Soza 10 (Zolpidem)

02/14 - 05/14
Flunil ​20mg , Divaa OD 250 mg(divalproex), Amisulpride 50mg (1-0-2), zolfresh 5 mg , Quetiapine
05/14 - 08/14 Venlafaxine 75 xr ( 1-0-1), zapiz 0.25
10/14 Zaptra 12.5mg , Oxetol xr 150mg (0-0-1)
11/14 - 08/15
Paris CR 25 (paroxetine) , Oxetol xr 600 mg (0-0-1), nitrest 5mg , Quetiapine for a month.
09/15-11 Venlafaxine XR 75 ( 1-0-1), Mirtazipine 15, Respiredal 0.5, Lamitor 25, zillion 10.
12/15-02/16 Off Meds (C.T)

03/16-Mid April Sertraline, Aripropazole, Quetiapine, Etizolam.

After that : CT and on OTC supplements (Roadback), now on Ayurveda
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I am interested

2009-2017 - 40mg Prozac, 2mg Risperdal, 200mg Seroquel, 7.5mg Zopiclone, 1.5mg Lorazepam, 50mg Setraline, 6mg Valium, 1mg Clonzepam, 7.5mg Zopiclone 7.5mg, - Adderall 20mg, 20mg Ritalin, 1mg Clonazepam, 7.5mg Zopiclone ,50mg Trazadone  40mg Citalopram, 40mg Strattera - 5mg Abilify, 250mg Trazadone, 40mg Testosterone (pills) - 100mg Seroqual, 50mg Remeron- 150mg Wellbutrin XL - Clonazepam 1mg > 5-6mg (and Bridge to Valium 40mg), Pregabalin - 300mg > 600mg, Ritalin 40mg,  0.25m>0.5mll Testosterone Entate, Adderall 30mg, Oxycodone 10mg, Loxapine 40mg, Seroquel 100mg, Lamitical 75mg, Cyclobenzaprine 15mg, Tramadol 200mg, Codeine 120mg, October - 2017 - Begin Valium taper at 40mg - 2mg every two weeks June 2018 - Rapid Detox in rehab from 200mg Tramadol, 600mg Pregabalin, 4mg Valium over 3 weeks. August 2018 Cold Turkey 70mg Lisdexamfetamine  October 2018 - 30mg Cymbalta, Feburary 2019 reinstate 70mg Lisdexamfetamine March 2019 Cold turkey Cymbalta&Lisdexamfetamine July 2019 - Reinstate 30mg Cymbalta and 70mg Lisdexamfetamine. October 2019  start taper 5-10% Cymbalta every 2-4 weeks  February 2021 2.42mg Cymbalta (15 beads) 0.4ml Testosterone Enantate IM biweekly Discontinued CT - Lisdexamfetamine 70mg
March 2021-March 2022- remove 1 bead Cymbalta per month-6 weeks - switch to Testogel 50mg then back to Enatate 0.4ml
March 2022 - Switch to Nebido 1000mg (every 12 weeks) - 2 beads Cymbalta (0.3mg)

April 2022 - 1 bead Cymbalta (0.15mg)

May 18th 2022 - 0 Beads (0.00mg) - 100% PSYCH DRUG FREE!
Supplements - Magnesium Malate, (half teaspoon) Glycinate, L-theronate (quater teaspoon) dissolved in water 2mg Melotonin, 1000mg Omega-3 Fish Oil x3 daily

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Naomi just interviewed me on Zoom, and I'd like to say she's very pleasant and knowledgeable, and it was a comfortable experience.  She's doing important work that can really get the word out.  I highly recommend talking with her.

Gridley Introduction


Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Begin Brassmonkey Slide Taper Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Oct. 30, 2020  Jump to zero from 0.025mg.  Current dose: 0.000mg

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.


Ativan 1 mg to 1.875mg 1986-2020, two CT's and reinstatements

Nov. 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover to 18.75mg Valium

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper of 18.75mg Valium 

End 2021  year 1 of Valium taper at 6mg

End 2022 year 2 of Valium taper at 2.75mg 

End 2023 year 3 of Valium taper at 1mg

Jan. 24, 2024: Hold at 1mg and shift to Imipramine taper.

Taper is 95% complete.


Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan.-Sept. 2016 tapered to 14.4mg  

March 22, 2022: Begin 10%/4 week taper

Aug. 5, 2022: hold at 9.5mg and shift to Valium taper

Jan. 24, 2024: Resume Imipramine taper.  Current dose as of Feb. 22: 7.6mg

Taper is 90% complete.  


Supplements: multiple, quercetin, omega-3, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotics, zinc, melatonin .3mg, anti-candida, iron, serrapeptase, nattokinase

I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice but simply information based on my own experience, as well as other members who have survived these drugs.

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  • 4 months later...

Hi everyone! 


Just wanted to post here again to say I am still seeking interview subjects, in case anyone is interested! I would also love to talk to people who are or have been moderators or group admins, here at SA or on another forum/site/group. Please send me a direct message on here if you would like to participate. 


All my best,


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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 year later...


How is your dissertation coming along?

Best wishes,


1996-2018 - misc. polypharmacy, incl. SSRIs, SNRIs, neuroleptics, lithium, benzos, stimulants, antihistamines, etc. (approx. 30+ drugs)

2012-2018 - 10mg lexapro/escitalopram (20mg?)    Jan. 2018 - 10mg -> 5mg, then from 5mg -> 2.5mg, then 0mg  -->  July 2018 - 0mg

2017(?)-2020 - vyvanse/lisdexamfetamine 60-70mg    2020-2021 - 70mg down to 0mg  -->  July 2021 - 0mg

March-April 2021 - vortioxetine 5-10mg (approx. 7 weeks total; CT)  -->  April 28th, 2021 - 0mg

supplements: magnesium powder (dissolved in water) as needed throughout the day; 1 tsp fish oil w/ morning meal; 2mg melatonin 

August 1, 2022 - 1 mg melatonin


Courage is fear that has said its prayers.  - Karle Wilson Baker

love and justice are not two. without inner change, there can be no outer change; without collective change, no change matters.  - Rev. angel Kyodo williams

Holding multiple truths. Knowing that everyone has their own accurate view of the way things are.  - text on homemade banner at Afiya house


I am not a medical professional; this is not medical advice. 

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  • 3 months later...

@Naomi, I would love to participate.

Put on Zoloft in late 2002 at almost 18 years of age.  Was never told to get off the drug by the dumbass child psychiatrist who I know hate forever, and was given mistaken information of how I needed to stay off of it.  Tapered off very fast (a few month taper) in summer of 2011 (about an 8.5 year history).  Had an amazing month in Costa Rica drug free.

Crashed fall of 2011 (passive suicidal ideation, arms and legs shaking uncontrollably during the date, insomnia, severe crying spells, doom, derealization) and was put on Lexapro and a benzo (I think Lorazepam).  Was so afraid of repeating that so I stayed on Lexapro but tapered off the benzo very fast (a month). 

Entered abusive marriage in 2015 and started having unbearable symptoms such as burning arms and body, insomnia, deep depression, and anxiety.  I felt I had no supportive environment to talk about the abuse, and instead went to a PCP for medical relief: I was put on Klonopin (1 mg a day, I think) and Trazodone (50 mg a day) by PCP in early 2016.

Unsuccessful too-fast Klonopin taper 2017-2018 (jumped off at 0.125 mg at psychiatrists' urging me to do a fast taper) and went back on it late 2018.

Been tapering off Klonopin since 2020 (Divorce process underway) and much later, switched to diazepam. 

Switched from 0.0625 mg Klonopin to 2 mg Diazepam around September 2021.  Tapered Diazepam from September 2021-August 2022.  As of August 2022, been taking around 0.5 mg Diazepam.  But I did something foolish and temporarily went back on expired crushed powdered Clonazepam for a month or so because I was afraid of running out of Diazepam. (I say around because I was using a liquid formulation, then the liquid formulation is no longer being produced by manufacturer, and I am cutting/crushing pills).

As of October 2022, here are my drugs and dosages: Lexapro 10 mg, Trazodone 50 mg, Diazepam 0.5 mg. 

As of February 2023: Lexapro 9 mg, Trazodone 50 mg, Diazepam 0.5 mg

April 18th, 2023: Updosed to 9.2 Lexapro, still Trazodone 50 mg, Diazepam 0.5 mg

July 3rd, 2023: 10 mg Lexapro, still Trazodone 50 mg, Diazepam 1 mg (updose); Dates I took Propranalol plus dosages: July 22nd (40 mg), July 17th (40 mg), June 29th (20 mg), June 16th (20 mg), May 20th (5 mg)



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