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KarenB

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Yay! Good to hear.

2000 - sertraline for job anxiety low confidence (17 years old) ..which turned the next 16 years into nightmare!

 

On/off sertraline severe withdrawals every time. 2014 - felt better as reduced dose of sertraline no more inner restlessness. Doctor rushed off again. Hit severe withdrawal. Lost the little I had in life. Couldn't get stable again on 12.5mg. Was switched to prozac. Had severe reaction to prozac..came off in November 2015 at 6mg as felt more confused and damaged on it..Even more withdrawal ..rage, depression, dyphoria, near constant suicidal ideation, self harm impulses, doom, concrete block in head, unable to do much of anything with this feeling in head..went back on 6mg of sertraline to see if would alleviate anything. It didn't..reduced from December to June 2016 came off at 2.5mg sertraline as was hospitalised for the severe rage, suicidal impulses, and put on 50mg lofepramine which in 2nd week reduced all symptoms but gave insomnia which still have..psych stopped lofepramine cold turkey..no increased withdrawal symptoms new symptoms from lofepramine except persistant insomnia which has as side effect.

 

Taking Ativan for 8 months for the severe rage self harm impulses 1-3 times a week (mostly 2 times a week) at .5mg. Two months (I'm unsure exactly when the interdose started to happen) ago interdose withdrawal seemed to happen..2 days I think after the Ativan.

 

 

Nightmare that could have been avoided!

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Great to hear.

Lock in these feelings to motivate you through the next waves (although ever hopeful it won't come).

March 2003 took two sartroline tablets after a traumatic incident and had a reaction so stopped.  I am not sure now whether what I had for the next 18 months was WD after the reaction or the emotional fallout from the traumatic event.  Some of it was very similar to WD in hindsight.  

 

February 2014 - Took five pristiq (50mg) tablets and three Ativan and had a severe reaction.
Extreme withdrawal symptoms for three weeks compounded by visit to naturopath -

One week later took 900mg St John's Wort x 3 daily for six weeks - more negative effects and suspected serotonin syndrome - before tapering over three weeks. Last tablet late May 2014.

Waves and windows cycle of recovery with longer windows and manageable waves.

May 2015 - already in a mild wave, following a usual pattern, I took clarithromicin and amoxicillin for two weeks for a sinus infection which I also seem to have had quite a reaction to.

 

February 2016 - Feeling much better.  I still have waves and windows but they are manageable.  I'm largely enjoying life again.

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  • 1 month later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello,

 

Just wanting to check in with my latest experiences.

 

Initially I did a 10% reduction of effexor, which caused 2 months of difficult w/d symptoms, then I gave myself a month of feeling fairly good before making a 1% reduction. 

Was fine for four days, then the last 3-4 days have been horrid w/d symptoms.  Am feeling pretty low to realise I am much more sensitised than I'd hoped.  I've been reading the slow taper threads, which really help, but would love to hear someone tell me that I'll be okay...

 

I'm currently on 133mg of Effexor.  That's a mighty long way to go if I can only make 1% cuts each two or three weeks.  Are there others who have to go that slow?  How can it be?  Feeling frightened and sad; feel like the drug has got me.  Telling myself tomorrow could bring relief... 

 

Thanks for listening,

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Karen,

I'm sorry you've been having some symptoms, I'm sure they will settle down soon.

I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks Petunia,

 

I'm sure they will.  Sometime last evening I realised I wasn't feelng scared or sad anymore - could be the start of the turnaround, I hope.  Still feeling sick though, yuck. 

Love the snail on your signature.  Do you know if others go this slow?

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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 Hi Karen, There seem to be a lot who go "very slow".  Look at  "Brassmonkey" & friends.

Many SSRI's and SSNRI's over 20 years. Zoloft for 7 years followed by Effexor, Lexapro, Prozac, Cymbalta, Celexa, Pristiq, Valdoxan, Mianserin and more - on and off. No tapering. Cold turkey off Valdoxan - end of May 2014

 

                                                  Psych Drug - free since May 2014
.
         

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks AliG, I'll check those out.  My progress keeps putting me in mind of that saying 'Go at the pace of the slowest chicken.'  I am the slowest chicken I know. ^_^

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

I used the spreadsheet to calculate doses (amazing resourse by the way) and got the terrible result of 27 years of tapering if I can only make a 1% cut every three weeks, to get down to 2mg.

 

That surely can't be right, or if it is, I can't face it that time-period.

 

So am thinking of trying this which keeps to the idea of very small cuts with good holds in between:  Each three weeks I could reduce my dose by .002g (the current weight of my dose is 0.221g).  This plan is based on my last reduction, which seems to be manageable.  It's a very small amount, and if it gets to the point where even that seems too much I could re-consider things then.  That would be a tapering of about 6 years, which I find much more do-able, even though it's still long. 

 

Any thoughts - am I straying too far off track?  

 

I was wondering if the percentage method doesn't work so well for us who are so sensitised, but I know others here will have better big-picture thoughts than me.

 

Thanks,

Karen.

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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I am a slow taperer as well. I have been tapering for four years now. (5 % every 4-5 weeks.) My only goal is to come off (I never felt really good on AD) and so will you. Try to throw the calendar away and go with your body. Especially in the beginning every drop was awful, but it stabilized after four weeks and I just carried on. I have some difficulties with the small doses as well, but at least I am going in the right direction. I had no idea it would take this long though!

I havent read your whole thread, I will, but are you able to have a decent everyday life while tapering? If you can that is worth so much.

Take care! You will manage this.

Hugs!

Current dose: 0! Free!  Quit June 2017.

2017: Last dose zoloft: 17 June 0,00065 mg 18 May 0, 001 mg 14 May 0,002 mg 9 May 0,003 mg 28 April 0,006 mg 19 April 0,009 mg 8 April 0,013 mg 25 March 0,019 mg 22 March 0,039 mg 18 March 0,052 mg 16 March 0,079 mg 4 March 0,086 1 March 0,099 mg 22 February 0,11 mg 15 February 0,13 mg 6 February 0,145 mg 24 January 0,15 mg 19 January 0,19 mg 10 January 0,20 mg 3 January

2016: 0,98 to 0,22 mg; 2015: 2,35 to 1,01 mg; 2014: 4,9 to 2,5 mg; 2013: 9,1 to 5,1 mg; 2012: 15,7 to 9,7 mg; 2011: Started on 25 mg - then 50 mg- dropped to 25- to 12.5 mg - back to 25 mg - after 18.75 mg started tiny tapering to 16.6 mg

Started on 25 mg Zoloft in March 2011 due to stressrelated tinnitus that gave me panicattacks. Had a terrible reaction to Zoloft from start, but was told to "hold on". After four months I was stuck. Therefore the long taper. Crazy, I know... Super sensitive to drops and have dropped by 4-6 % from the previous dose.

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 Karen,  As a "slow chicken" , you'll win the race !!  Hang in there . :)  It's all good !

 

 Hugs, Ali.

Many SSRI's and SSNRI's over 20 years. Zoloft for 7 years followed by Effexor, Lexapro, Prozac, Cymbalta, Celexa, Pristiq, Valdoxan, Mianserin and more - on and off. No tapering. Cold turkey off Valdoxan - end of May 2014

 

                                                  Psych Drug - free since May 2014
.
         

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks Amy,

 

Can I ask some more questions?  - Do you mean that after a few drops, the drops became less awful?  And are you able to function fairly normally during that time?  Also, for how many good/stable days do you wait before making another drop?

 

When I make a drop I have four good days, then at least a week of debilitating nausea, dizziness, exhaustion etc.  I can't leave the house, sometimes can't leave the couch, definately can't do things with my kids, or cook or anything normal.  It's very hard on my kids, and our whole family.  That's why I can't settle easilly with the idea of years and years of this.

 

I feel traumatised all over again.  I already had a big trauma to deal with, then with the anti-depressants I now have another trauma to deal with.  I don't know how to face this.

 

Thanks for sharing,

Karen 

 

"Especially in the beginning every drop was awful, but it stabilized after four weeks and I just carried on. I have some difficulties with the small doses as well, but at least I am going in the right direction. I had no idea it would take this long though!
I havent read your whole thread, I will, but are you able to have a decent everyday life while tapering?"

 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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I am so sorry, Karen. It's horrendous what these drugs are doing to us. I am so angry and sad when I think of how many people are affected by ssri, and how the doctors keep pushing them out.

 

To your questions: On the lower doses it has been much easier. Also I haven't been so scared as in the beginning, as I saw a pattern when I dropped.

In the beginning I felt awful (dizzy, brainfoggy, nauseous, exhausted) for a week, slightly better the second week, better the third week and kind of "stabilized" (no dizzyness, brainfog clearer, better mood) the fourth week. Then I would drop.

I have always kind of also felt side effects from the drug, and as I felt that I just wanted to move forward.

I have been working full time until end of this year when I accepted "severance pay" (right word? English is not my native language). It was a big challenge working and have a family with kids. I was happy to have quite a free job, so it worked but I was so spaced out so many times.

Again, I am so sorry for your struggle. It is so unfair, and so hard to deal with this.

Try small minidrops and wait, and see how your body respond. Take care.

Current dose: 0! Free!  Quit June 2017.

2017: Last dose zoloft: 17 June 0,00065 mg 18 May 0, 001 mg 14 May 0,002 mg 9 May 0,003 mg 28 April 0,006 mg 19 April 0,009 mg 8 April 0,013 mg 25 March 0,019 mg 22 March 0,039 mg 18 March 0,052 mg 16 March 0,079 mg 4 March 0,086 1 March 0,099 mg 22 February 0,11 mg 15 February 0,13 mg 6 February 0,145 mg 24 January 0,15 mg 19 January 0,19 mg 10 January 0,20 mg 3 January

2016: 0,98 to 0,22 mg; 2015: 2,35 to 1,01 mg; 2014: 4,9 to 2,5 mg; 2013: 9,1 to 5,1 mg; 2012: 15,7 to 9,7 mg; 2011: Started on 25 mg - then 50 mg- dropped to 25- to 12.5 mg - back to 25 mg - after 18.75 mg started tiny tapering to 16.6 mg

Started on 25 mg Zoloft in March 2011 due to stressrelated tinnitus that gave me panicattacks. Had a terrible reaction to Zoloft from start, but was told to "hold on". After four months I was stuck. Therefore the long taper. Crazy, I know... Super sensitive to drops and have dropped by 4-6 % from the previous dose.

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So sorry this is so hard, Karen..

 

Yes this is so hard to deal with. I sound this site in oct last year and still feel I'm coming to enter a with what these drugs have done to me and the struggle of coming off..but I think youll be fine your in a relatively stable place before tapering so that's good.

2000 - sertraline for job anxiety low confidence (17 years old) ..which turned the next 16 years into nightmare!

 

On/off sertraline severe withdrawals every time. 2014 - felt better as reduced dose of sertraline no more inner restlessness. Doctor rushed off again. Hit severe withdrawal. Lost the little I had in life. Couldn't get stable again on 12.5mg. Was switched to prozac. Had severe reaction to prozac..came off in November 2015 at 6mg as felt more confused and damaged on it..Even more withdrawal ..rage, depression, dyphoria, near constant suicidal ideation, self harm impulses, doom, concrete block in head, unable to do much of anything with this feeling in head..went back on 6mg of sertraline to see if would alleviate anything. It didn't..reduced from December to June 2016 came off at 2.5mg sertraline as was hospitalised for the severe rage, suicidal impulses, and put on 50mg lofepramine which in 2nd week reduced all symptoms but gave insomnia which still have..psych stopped lofepramine cold turkey..no increased withdrawal symptoms new symptoms from lofepramine except persistant insomnia which has as side effect.

 

Taking Ativan for 8 months for the severe rage self harm impulses 1-3 times a week (mostly 2 times a week) at .5mg. Two months (I'm unsure exactly when the interdose started to happen) ago interdose withdrawal seemed to happen..2 days I think after the Ativan.

 

 

Nightmare that could have been avoided!

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thank you Amy, for all your understanding and taking the time to share how it's been for you.  I think our experiences have been similar in some ways - I also wanted to begin tapering because I was already having side-effects and worsening depression while on the anti-depressants. 

 

How strong you must have been to be working! 

 

I like what you point out about the fear dropping away once a pattern establishes.  The unknown quantity of all this is maybe the most difficult aspect.

 

So, I'm trying to build a different mindset (which I've never been too good at) where I think of all the healing that is happening, rather than what I am missing.  Even if I can manage that for a day it must help somehow.  It's day by day anyway right now.  And I'm reading about neuro plasticity, which makes me feel hopeful.  

 

Thanks once again, hugs

Karen 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks, don't know where I'd be without the people here. 

 

 

So sorry this is so hard, Karen..

Yes this is so hard to deal with. I sound this site in oct last year and still feel I'm coming to enter a with what these drugs have done to me and the struggle of coming off..but I think youll be fine your in a relatively stable place before tapering so that's good.

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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It's day by day, Karen. And taking ministeps. I wonder why you changed from Escitalopram to Venlafaxine? Have you felt better on Venlafaxine?

Current dose: 0! Free!  Quit June 2017.

2017: Last dose zoloft: 17 June 0,00065 mg 18 May 0, 001 mg 14 May 0,002 mg 9 May 0,003 mg 28 April 0,006 mg 19 April 0,009 mg 8 April 0,013 mg 25 March 0,019 mg 22 March 0,039 mg 18 March 0,052 mg 16 March 0,079 mg 4 March 0,086 1 March 0,099 mg 22 February 0,11 mg 15 February 0,13 mg 6 February 0,145 mg 24 January 0,15 mg 19 January 0,19 mg 10 January 0,20 mg 3 January

2016: 0,98 to 0,22 mg; 2015: 2,35 to 1,01 mg; 2014: 4,9 to 2,5 mg; 2013: 9,1 to 5,1 mg; 2012: 15,7 to 9,7 mg; 2011: Started on 25 mg - then 50 mg- dropped to 25- to 12.5 mg - back to 25 mg - after 18.75 mg started tiny tapering to 16.6 mg

Started on 25 mg Zoloft in March 2011 due to stressrelated tinnitus that gave me panicattacks. Had a terrible reaction to Zoloft from start, but was told to "hold on". After four months I was stuck. Therefore the long taper. Crazy, I know... Super sensitive to drops and have dropped by 4-6 % from the previous dose.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

It's day by day, Karen. And taking ministeps. I wonder why you changed from Escitalopram to Venlafaxine? Have you felt better on Venlafaxine?

I changed because it didn't seem to be working.  Each of the changes I made were for that reason.  Now I understand that once a person gets past those initial short-term benefits, the best thing to do is stop using rather than shopping around trying this that and the other. 

 

However, as for today, I'm feeling quite happy and still practising meditations to heal my brain. 

 

I hope you are well,

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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Ha, Karen what typos..I'm surprised you understand what I was trying to say lol!

 

I meant "I found this site in October and I'm still coming to terms with what these drugs have done".

2000 - sertraline for job anxiety low confidence (17 years old) ..which turned the next 16 years into nightmare!

 

On/off sertraline severe withdrawals every time. 2014 - felt better as reduced dose of sertraline no more inner restlessness. Doctor rushed off again. Hit severe withdrawal. Lost the little I had in life. Couldn't get stable again on 12.5mg. Was switched to prozac. Had severe reaction to prozac..came off in November 2015 at 6mg as felt more confused and damaged on it..Even more withdrawal ..rage, depression, dyphoria, near constant suicidal ideation, self harm impulses, doom, concrete block in head, unable to do much of anything with this feeling in head..went back on 6mg of sertraline to see if would alleviate anything. It didn't..reduced from December to June 2016 came off at 2.5mg sertraline as was hospitalised for the severe rage, suicidal impulses, and put on 50mg lofepramine which in 2nd week reduced all symptoms but gave insomnia which still have..psych stopped lofepramine cold turkey..no increased withdrawal symptoms new symptoms from lofepramine except persistant insomnia which has as side effect.

 

Taking Ativan for 8 months for the severe rage self harm impulses 1-3 times a week (mostly 2 times a week) at .5mg. Two months (I'm unsure exactly when the interdose started to happen) ago interdose withdrawal seemed to happen..2 days I think after the Ativan.

 

 

Nightmare that could have been avoided!

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Ok I see. Take care. Step by step. You will be fine. Hugs!

Current dose: 0! Free!  Quit June 2017.

2017: Last dose zoloft: 17 June 0,00065 mg 18 May 0, 001 mg 14 May 0,002 mg 9 May 0,003 mg 28 April 0,006 mg 19 April 0,009 mg 8 April 0,013 mg 25 March 0,019 mg 22 March 0,039 mg 18 March 0,052 mg 16 March 0,079 mg 4 March 0,086 1 March 0,099 mg 22 February 0,11 mg 15 February 0,13 mg 6 February 0,145 mg 24 January 0,15 mg 19 January 0,19 mg 10 January 0,20 mg 3 January

2016: 0,98 to 0,22 mg; 2015: 2,35 to 1,01 mg; 2014: 4,9 to 2,5 mg; 2013: 9,1 to 5,1 mg; 2012: 15,7 to 9,7 mg; 2011: Started on 25 mg - then 50 mg- dropped to 25- to 12.5 mg - back to 25 mg - after 18.75 mg started tiny tapering to 16.6 mg

Started on 25 mg Zoloft in March 2011 due to stressrelated tinnitus that gave me panicattacks. Had a terrible reaction to Zoloft from start, but was told to "hold on". After four months I was stuck. Therefore the long taper. Crazy, I know... Super sensitive to drops and have dropped by 4-6 % from the previous dose.

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Hi KarenB,

 

I read your meds history several times trying to understand what you have been going through and the possible impact on your system and your current status.

 

It seems to me you might still have effects from the multiple changes both with meds and doses in the past. If this makes sense, what you are feeling now is not only from the 1% cut, but on top of the cumulative effects of previous changes. Slow tapering will minimize symptoms only after your system is relatively stable. I have been doing less than 1%cut for the past year but all the time I felt terrible now I know it was mainly due to my bad reaction the the dose increase. Ever since I was down to 3.4 or so, the slow taper is much more tolerable and lots times I feel pretty good or even normal.

 

If all true and you agree, I would guess if you hold on now until you feel somewhat stable before taper would provide the true benefit of slow taper.

 

Just my guess, you know the best about the very delicate day to day situation and can make the best judgment.

 

On the other hand, you may want to do some research see if symptoms are caused by bad reaction of the new meds you are taking right now. If this is the case, you may want to continue the taper while endure the symptoms.

 

It's such a complicated case, one can only do the best to rational based on intensive research and experience.

Drug free Sep. 23 2017

2009 Mar.: lexapro 10mg for headache for 2 weeks.

2009-2012: on and off 1/4 to 1/3 of 10mg

2012 June--2013 Jan,: 1/4-1/3 of 10mg generic, bad jaw pain

2013 Jan-Mar: 10 mg generic. severe jaw and head pain;

2013 Mar--Aug. started tapering (liquid ever since) from 10 to 5 (one step) then gradually down to 2.25 mg by July. first ever panic attack, severe head/jaw pain

2013 Aug.: back to 2.75 mg; Nov: back to Brand Lex. 2.75mg -- 3mg,

2014 June: stopped PPI, head pressure/numbness. up-dosed 4.5mg, severe reaction mental symptoms added on

2014 Aug--2015 Aug: Micro taper down to 3.2mg, .025mg (<1%) cut holding 2-3 weeks.

2015 Aug 15th, Accidental one dose of 4.2mg. worsening brain non-functional, swollen head, body, coma like, DR

2016 Feb., started dosing 10am through 11 pm everyday 2/13--3.2mg, 3/15-- 2.9mg, 4/19-- 2.6mg, 6/26--2.2mg, 7/22 --1.9mg, 8/16--1.8mg,8/31--1.7m g, 9/13--1.6mg, 9/27--1.5mg, 10/8--1.4mg, 10/14--1.3mg, 11/1--1.2mg, 11/29--1.1mg, 12/12--1mg, 12/22--0.9mg

2017: 1/7--0.8mg, 1/15--0.7mg, 1/17--0.6mg, 1/20--0.52, 1/21--0.4mg, 1/22--0.26, 1/23--0.2, 2/13--0.13mg, 2/20--0.06mg, 3/18--0.13mg, 6/1--0.12mg, 7/6--0.1mg, 7/14--0.08mg, 8/17--0.04mg, 8/20--0.03mg, 8/28--0.02mg, 9/6--0.0205mg, 9/8--0.02mg, 9/17--0.015mg, 9/20--0.01mg, 9/21--0.0048mg, 9/22--0.0001mg,

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Karen,

 

I'm so sorry you're struggling so much.  And 27 years...that is so disheartening!  I have a couple of pieces of my advice, based on my limited experience (and I'm still not off, but have come down quite a ways):

 

1) Go even slower.  Once you feel good and stable, try the smallest cut you can.  Hopefully, you'll feel few, if any, WD symptoms and be able to make another cut within a shorter time.   Over the course of a month the reductions could add up to 2% but your body and brain only have to deal with a small change at one time. 

 

My body couldn't handle larger reductions but did fine on a series of smaller ones, somewhat close together.

 

2) Modify your diet/supplement regime.  There's tons of information out there about diet and effects on seratonin and antidepressants and all; you can try some and see what works for you.  Ditto the supplements--although since you're so sensitive you should probably start small.  From personal experience, the "no sugar or flour and loads of green vegetables" works well for me.  I notice that even when I eat a small cookie I'm very jittery and anxious; even though the diet is a pain, feeling good is worth it.

 

I hope you can feel well throughout your withdrawal. It's so important for you, your kids, everyone!

January 2014 Zoloft 150 mg

May 2014 Started tapering

January 2015  Zoloft 54 mg

January 2016 18 mg

January 2017 12 mg

January 2018 7 mg CRASH! 

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Hi Karen,

 

Its good you are aware of the both evils of the game! It is one of the hardest part playing with these meds as they can give very similar faces inconsistently, and no one in the whole world but yourself to figure out which is which every hour and day.  I somehow had a pretty sure feeling after the 1st 9 month struggling since the hit by dose increase last Aug., ever since I started having 1 or 2 days window (less intolerable) at 3.4mg, the pattern got clearer and I know more sure about when I need (not 'can') to make another cut. I say so because it feels better with a new cut after 2-3 weeks holding when some symptoms from too much drug appear. I would experience a coupe fair days first followed by some shaking days with WD symptoms for 1 week or so then some good days until drug side effects come back.

 

If you are feeling better off not making a cut, then not to. As everyone here says, listen to your body.

 

I was not thinking I could have good days like these days just a month ago but it happened like a miracle. I am almost fully functional and all the symptoms either disappeared and lessoned both in intensity and duration/frequency. I am very sure now that this can be done with minimal suffering once you figured out the right pace, pattern, and avoid all possible triggers in life and take good care of ourselves in all other ways like diet, exercise, slep etc.

 

Hope you are having a better day today.    

lexAnger

Drug free Sep. 23 2017

2009 Mar.: lexapro 10mg for headache for 2 weeks.

2009-2012: on and off 1/4 to 1/3 of 10mg

2012 June--2013 Jan,: 1/4-1/3 of 10mg generic, bad jaw pain

2013 Jan-Mar: 10 mg generic. severe jaw and head pain;

2013 Mar--Aug. started tapering (liquid ever since) from 10 to 5 (one step) then gradually down to 2.25 mg by July. first ever panic attack, severe head/jaw pain

2013 Aug.: back to 2.75 mg; Nov: back to Brand Lex. 2.75mg -- 3mg,

2014 June: stopped PPI, head pressure/numbness. up-dosed 4.5mg, severe reaction mental symptoms added on

2014 Aug--2015 Aug: Micro taper down to 3.2mg, .025mg (<1%) cut holding 2-3 weeks.

2015 Aug 15th, Accidental one dose of 4.2mg. worsening brain non-functional, swollen head, body, coma like, DR

2016 Feb., started dosing 10am through 11 pm everyday 2/13--3.2mg, 3/15-- 2.9mg, 4/19-- 2.6mg, 6/26--2.2mg, 7/22 --1.9mg, 8/16--1.8mg,8/31--1.7m g, 9/13--1.6mg, 9/27--1.5mg, 10/8--1.4mg, 10/14--1.3mg, 11/1--1.2mg, 11/29--1.1mg, 12/12--1mg, 12/22--0.9mg

2017: 1/7--0.8mg, 1/15--0.7mg, 1/17--0.6mg, 1/20--0.52, 1/21--0.4mg, 1/22--0.26, 1/23--0.2, 2/13--0.13mg, 2/20--0.06mg, 3/18--0.13mg, 6/1--0.12mg, 7/6--0.1mg, 7/14--0.08mg, 8/17--0.04mg, 8/20--0.03mg, 8/28--0.02mg, 9/6--0.0205mg, 9/8--0.02mg, 9/17--0.015mg, 9/20--0.01mg, 9/21--0.0048mg, 9/22--0.0001mg,

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

Yesterday I went to my doc to keep my Effexor prescription going (in NZ we have to go every 3 months to renew it).  I told her all my withdrawal symptoms, and how long they've been going for, and she really surprised me with her response.  She wrote it all down and agreed to send an adverse reaction report to Pharmac (NZ's pharmacutical management agency).  

 

She was surprised at the severity of my symptoms - told me most people do fine etc.  But, she also asked me what support I have, and I told her I'd found a good forum on-line.  I expected her to smirk, but instead she asked me lots of questions such as 'Do they think that if you stabilise for a while, the symptoms won't be as bad when you continue tapering?' and 'How much do they recommend tapering by?' and 'do they recommend bridging to another SSRI?'  She also wanted details on how I accurately measure the tapered amounts.

 

Strange as it seems, it felt like she was trying to build up some kind of understanding.  And at 10 minutes, that was my longest visit ever ;).

 

So, we chip away...

  

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Wow! It sounds like you have a great doctor. Do you think she would visit the site herself and learn more about tapering if you gave her the address. We could add her to our list of recommended doctors of she was willing to learn about withdrawal and tapering.

I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Not sure, my gut feeling is she wouldn't want to.  I could mention it in another 3 months of course - it's always worth a shot.  I was very surprised she was as open as she was - I was expecting a tough vist to get through.  

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • Moderator Emeritus

Update:  It is now 2 months since I made that 1% cut.  The first month was pretty rough with symptoms, and the second month was better with just minimal symptoms.  I was hoping to make a tinsy cut today, but don't feel quite on top of things.  I've got this cold that won't go away, and I slept most of today. 

 

If I feel better tomorrow I might make the cut, which would take me from 221mg to 220mg, which is less than one percent.  

 

Trying to keep my head up.  Also experiencing big sadness lately. 

 

Have had some real down times, but am still managing to return to the base-line of believing that 'there is goodness.'

 

Love to everyone,

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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Hi KarenB

The sadness is classic wdl symptoms so dont let it scare i would just see it as the body healing.

You might not be the slowest chicken ..there is one in christchurch that might give you a run for your money... the mighty 'songbird'.

 

Slow and steady wins the race

All the best for the next drop.

Thought for the day: Lets stand up, and let’s speak out , together. G Olsen

We have until the 14th. Feb 2018. 

URGENT REQUEST Please consider submitting  for the petition on Prescribed Drug Dependence and Withdrawal currently awaiting its third consideration at the Scottish Parliament. You don't even have to be from Scotland. By clicking on the link below you can read some of the previous submissions but be warned many of them are quite harrowing.

http://www.parliament.scot/GettingInvolved/Petitions/PE01651   

Please tell them about your problems taking and withdrawing from antidepressants and/or benzos.

Send by email to petitions@parliament.scot and quote PE01651 in the subject heading. Keep to a maximum of 3 sides of A4 and you can't name for legal reasons any doctor you have consulted. Tell them if you wish to remain anonymous. We need the numbers to help convince the committee members we are not isolated cases. You have until mid February. Thank you

Recovering paxil addict

None of the published articles shed light on what ssri's ... actually do or what their hazards might be. Healy 2013. 

This is so true, with anything you get on these drugs, dependance, tapering, withdrawal symptoms, side effects, just silent. And if there is something mentioned then their is a serious disconnect between what is said and reality! 

  "Every time I read of a multi-person shooting, I always presume that person had just started a SSRI or had just stopped."  Dr Mosher. Me too! 

Over two decades later, the number of antidepressant prescriptions a year is slightly more than the number of people in the Western world. Most (nine out of 10) prescriptions are for patients who faced difficulties on stopping, equating to about a tenth of the population. These patients are often advised to continue treatment because their difficulties indicate they need ongoing treatment, just as a person with diabetes needs insulin. Healy 2015

I believe the ssri era will soon stand as one of the most shameful in the history of medicine. Healy 2015

Let people help people ... in a natural, kind, non-addictive (and non-big pharma) way. J Broadley 2017

 

 

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Hello Karen. Hope you are having a better day today. It is a difficult journey but there is light, hope and joy. Thinking about you, sending you positive energy and hugs~

Orchid*

~ 2004 was started on Paxil 40 mg

~ 2004 reduced dose to 10 mg by cutting pills (without dr advice)

~ 2006 reduced dose to 7.5 mg and started taking Paxil every 3d day 

~ 2014 (June) started feeling anxious (symptoms of restlessness and anxiety severe)

~ 2014(July) was placed on Buspar and Xanax, stopped after 1 week, could not tolerate

~ 2014 (September) started on 12.5 mg of Zoloft, stopped in December 2014

~ 2014 (December) restarted Paxil 5 mg/day

~ 2015 (February) fast taper from Paxil due to severe restlessness and anxiety

~ 2015(March) 0 Paxil, severe WD symptoms

~ 2015 (April) placed on 5 mg Lexapro by Dr, but split pill in 4, 1.25 mg/day

~ 2015 (May) started tappering, symptoms started getting worst

~ 2015 JUNE 26th completely off Lexapro till present day~

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Thanks NZ, I'm going to look up songbird today. 

 

And thanks Orchid too for your support and caring.

 

I'm feeling way better today, well rested and quite positive.  Will make the next drop tonight.  Gleep :wacko:.

 

Hugs,

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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Hi Karen! you're doing so well and being so brave considering how scary this all is! I'm really encouraged that all this while you've been seeing a counselor, I've never committed to seeing someone regularly and struggle on never really coming to terms with things (burying has been my style - but of course it's times like now when I am in withdrawal or when I have pms or under extreme stress that my rage surfaces) Did you find ways to deal with this? I'm quite ashamed of it and kind of wish I was more the anxious sad type rather than the angry sad. Being neither of course would be preferable :)

 

I'll be back on here for a good while I think, I'm just not strong enough to handle the outside world presently xxx Karen can you tell me what it's like living in a small town? Currently I've got my heart set on moving out of Akld to Gisborne, somewhere quiet, less noisy, less speedy. I feel like the pace here is too much for me.

 

xxx mollyn

 

Drug history

  • 20mg paxil in 2001 - 4 months use  
  • 20mg paxil in 2003 - 2 months use 
  • 20mg paxil in 2008 - 8 years continuous

Withdrawal history:

  • March 2014 - disastrous alternate day taper
  • Jan 2015 - 15mg to 10mg. Disaster
  • Sept 2015 -  10mg to 5mg. Disaster. Reinstated to 6mg. Relief
  • Oct 2015 - started slow 10% taper 
  • Oct 2016 - at 4mg- stop taking paxil (not recommended)

 

I'm not a medical professional. Seek advice from a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

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Hi, Karen. I am glad to hear you are feeling better, and more positive. May it always be this way, just positive improvement. I am back at work after weeks of being off, due to WD symptoms. I felt like I was loosing my strength, my confidence. It feels good to be back.... : )

~Orchid~

~ 2004 was started on Paxil 40 mg

~ 2004 reduced dose to 10 mg by cutting pills (without dr advice)

~ 2006 reduced dose to 7.5 mg and started taking Paxil every 3d day 

~ 2014 (June) started feeling anxious (symptoms of restlessness and anxiety severe)

~ 2014(July) was placed on Buspar and Xanax, stopped after 1 week, could not tolerate

~ 2014 (September) started on 12.5 mg of Zoloft, stopped in December 2014

~ 2014 (December) restarted Paxil 5 mg/day

~ 2015 (February) fast taper from Paxil due to severe restlessness and anxiety

~ 2015(March) 0 Paxil, severe WD symptoms

~ 2015 (April) placed on 5 mg Lexapro by Dr, but split pill in 4, 1.25 mg/day

~ 2015 (May) started tappering, symptoms started getting worst

~ 2015 JUNE 26th completely off Lexapro till present day~

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi MollyN,

 

Nice to hear from you, I hope some good things are happening for you.  I see in your signature you're focusing on self-care, that's so good to hear.  You deserve it and your family does too ;).  I have been in counseling since I was 19 - that makes 18 years.  I've needed it, still need it.  Sometimes it's just been to keep my head above water, sometimes I've learned some really life-changing things like creating new brain-pathways in order to deal with rage and defensiveness.

 

When my issues, now compounded by meds, affect my daughters and husband, that breaks my heart.  My bottom line has always been to treat my family well - that comes first.  And that doesn't mean I manage to do that - just that that's what I'm working for.  I took a long time to realise that I was never going to get to a place of being 'better' but instead it would be a lifetime of healing and managing.  If you want more of an idea see my blog ContinuedHealing which documents all my ups and downs and the things I've learned that have helped me.  Creating new brain pathways has been central to my healing.

 

I totally recommend having a counselor who you build up a trusting relationship with, then when things are hard you can just hook back in for a few sessions with someone who knows your story, and get the help you need.  Even when I've thought there's nothing my counselor can do this time, or for this problem, she has always been able to help me find a better perspective and ways through the trouble.  

 

And to your other question, I love living in a small town.  I love bumping into people I know down town, love having the shop-owners know my name, love waving to people at our one-way bridge.  Love how everybody recognises your kids and lets you know if they've seen them round town, love the support groups that spring up, the strong community bond.  I feel so contained by my town, so held by it and protected.  I've actually come to think of this part of the west coast as my mother.  I've been here 15 years now and I still think to myself as I drive down the road into town 'man I love my town.'  There's no McD's, KFC, Subway etc, no big supermarkets, no parking metres.  It's safe for our kids to bike everywhere by themselves.  You can wear whatever into town and no-one bats an eye - gumboots, swannie, whatever.  I think it makes for easy living - fewer people, fewer expectations.  

 

I know what you mean about not coping with the outside world - I can't go to Hamilton anymore, too big, too much city busy-ness.  The world is a startling place really, and when you are extra sensitive I think it makes sense to find gentle places to live.  What you will need to be able to do, I guess, is find ways to meet the people in the new town if you move.  Personally I'd find that hard at this stage of my life, but you'd probably be able to do it because the pay-off of living in a gentler place would make it worth the effort.    

 

I hope things come clear for you in your decision making,

Hugs,

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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Update:  One and half days since '1/3 of a 1% drop' and I'm feeling queasy, anxious, tired, puffed, and a little dizzy.

 

Was expecting the usual four days of feeling okay before symptoms started up, especially with such a tiny reduction.  Do people sometimes get symptoms earlier than that? 

 

And what could reactions to such a tiny drop mean?  This is the starting of my tapering - what on earth will it be like at the other end, when it's supposed to be the most difficult?

 

I'm a bit concerned.  

Karen 

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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Hi Karen. I can get symptoms half a day after tapering. Nowadays it's usually day two.

Current dose: 0! Free!  Quit June 2017.

2017: Last dose zoloft: 17 June 0,00065 mg 18 May 0, 001 mg 14 May 0,002 mg 9 May 0,003 mg 28 April 0,006 mg 19 April 0,009 mg 8 April 0,013 mg 25 March 0,019 mg 22 March 0,039 mg 18 March 0,052 mg 16 March 0,079 mg 4 March 0,086 1 March 0,099 mg 22 February 0,11 mg 15 February 0,13 mg 6 February 0,145 mg 24 January 0,15 mg 19 January 0,19 mg 10 January 0,20 mg 3 January

2016: 0,98 to 0,22 mg; 2015: 2,35 to 1,01 mg; 2014: 4,9 to 2,5 mg; 2013: 9,1 to 5,1 mg; 2012: 15,7 to 9,7 mg; 2011: Started on 25 mg - then 50 mg- dropped to 25- to 12.5 mg - back to 25 mg - after 18.75 mg started tiny tapering to 16.6 mg

Started on 25 mg Zoloft in March 2011 due to stressrelated tinnitus that gave me panicattacks. Had a terrible reaction to Zoloft from start, but was told to "hold on". After four months I was stuck. Therefore the long taper. Crazy, I know... Super sensitive to drops and have dropped by 4-6 % from the previous dose.

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Next question:  All day I've been having a strange vinegary taste in my mouth.  Can't get rid of it no matter what I eat.  Anyone else had this?  I know strange tastes are a withdrawal symptom, just haven't read of this particular one yet.

 

(And thanks for sharing Amy, I guess 4 days is an average.  Wish I could be average ;))

 

Karen

2010  Fluoxetine 20mg.  2011  Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Tapered badly and destabilised CNS.  Effexor 150mg. 

2015 Begin using info at SurvivingAntidepressants.  Cut 10% - bad w/d 2 months, held 1 month. 

Micro-tapering: four weekly 0.4% cuts, hold 4 weeks (struggling with symptoms).

8 month hold.

2017 Micro-tapering: four weekly 1% cuts, hold 4 weeks (symptoms almost non-existent).

2020 Still micro-tapering. Just over 2/3 of the way off effexor. Minimal symptoms, - and sleeping well.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamin C, iron, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.

2023 Now on 7 micro-beads of Effexor. Minimal symptoms but much more time needed between drops.

 'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Karen, 

 

I'm curious about how you measure your venlafaxine to make such small cuts?  Are you able to get a liquid in NZ?  I have the capsules with beads and both count and weigh, but my little Gemini20 scale has not been very accurate!  I believe today's WD symptoms were because I thought I had reduced from 30 to 29.25 mg (a 2.5% drop, one bead) five days ago, but when I reweighed the capsules I had made up that day, they were underweight and more like 28.1 mg, a 6.25% drop.  So, I am with you on the sensitivity!  I am also on mirtazapine and had been putting my greatest effort towards tapering that one, while doing micro-nudges of the venlafaxine.  WD from ven feels a good bit different than the mirt WD.

 

i am sorry that your nervous system is sooo sensitive and that this nightmare drug is giving you such a rough time. 

 

Last night I woke up numerous times with heat spread over my body.  In the past I have gotten drenched in sweat, but this was different.  Strange dreams, too.  Then, irritable, anxious, generally negative-feeling, and sort of an over-all "raw nerve" feeling.  Periodic waves of heat/burning sensations, too.  Good humor and smiles hard to come by today.  Absolutely no motivation so was a couch day.  These days always make me fear that this is really the me I will be left with when the drugs are history.  I have to keep reminding myself "this is withdrawal, not me, and I am healing."

 

I tend to be pretty dense about making connections between eating and doing things and having worsening symptoms.  A friend of mine who is 17 months out from a fast taper off Lexapro found that some essential oils she was using for her daughter triggered WD symptoms, and several days after her weekly myofascial release sessions, she would also have much worse symptoms.  Is there anything that you are doing or taking that might be making WD worse?  Just a thought, since I have read of other folks on here having such sensitivities.

 

My thoughts are with you on this journey.  I hope that you get settled out soon and get some relief from your symptoms.

 

SG

Started ADs back around 1995 after bad break-up, starting with Prozac.  Switched to Wellbutrin, and then to Effexor in 2002
Effexor XR 2002-2014 up to 225 mg at one point, down to 37.5 mg towards end but back up to 75 mg in 2014; now realize I had W/D as I dropped down, memory very poor about history.  Extreme emotions, poor concentration as I stepped back down, didn't connect the dots!
Summer 2014 reduced to 0 very quickly, was sick of anhedonia/sexual dysfunction due to meds, depression never controlled if not worse. Didn't recognize WD since symptoms built slowly (thought I had ADD! and menopausal on top of it), starting with severe sweats, very bad cog-fog and memory issues, culminating in weight loss, severe anxiety and depression, panic, severe apathy and insomnia by eight months off.  Saw p-doc who put me on Remeron, increased from 7.5 mg/day to 37.5 mg by May 22, 2015; still doing very badly though able to sleep.

June 1. 2015 Reinstated Effexor XR 37.5 mg, Remeron dropped to 30 mg PM. Immediate relief of symptoms, like nothing had ever happened!  Joined SA and began on advice of friend who recognized it was WD all along! Began tapering in July 2015.

Been tapering both meds ever since, focusing on one more than the other or doing no more than 5% of each per month.

12 mg Effexor and 5.8 mg Remeron (mirtazapine SolTabs to make a solution with OraPlus) as of 5/4/2017 

Update 3/14/18: 2.9 mg Remeron and 6 mg Effexor; 6/10/18:  2.6 mg Remeron and 4.9 mg Effexor

 

My intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/9313-squirrellygirl-effexor-withdrawal-etc/page-2#entry196679

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

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