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  1. Hello Im new here. Thank you for taking time to read this if you are. :) I have been on Mirt for only 12 days at 15 mg. Im looking to come off due to side effects, its just not suited for me. I was going to do 11.25 for 4 days, 7.5 for 4 days, 3.75 for 4 days, then off. Is that too quickly? I thought not since I have only been on it for 12 days at 15 mg. I appreciate everyones input and advice! :)
  2. I am so glad that I came across this forum! I feel like crying when reading peoples stories and their struggle with coming off the antidepressants! I was prescribed Zoloft for anxiety and Depression which I have been suffering for years! Mainly anxiety and panic disorder! I am otherwise healthy. Zoloft caused PGAD that has caused me so much anguish, I feel like I am living in a nightmare! I only took Zoloft for 3 days 25mg and this happened to me! I wanted to and still have thoughts of suicide! I felt that I was some kind of a freak and pervert! It has been 4 weeks and things have improved but not completely gone! I constantly feel burning sensation, and tingles that drive me crazy! I can deal with the burning sensations but tingles I can not stand! I got better then I took a herbal supplement for anxiety and it has come back today! I am taking fish oil supplement and I wonder if I am now sensitive to fish oil too??? Should I stop or cut back on fish oil? I just don't know what to take anymore! I never could imagine that this could happen to me as I was not aware! The doctor did not mention anything so I had no idea! I am naturally a slim person and my only worry at the time was if I was going to gain weight while on antidepressants, and my doctor reassured me "Very Unlikely". I took her word for it and I took the medication. In did not want to deal with, anxiety, depression and plus weight issues as a result of antidepressants! I told my doctor what happened to me and like many others have reported "she has never heard of it". That made me feel so humiliated and embarrassed. The point is that the doctors are not educated in regards to this issue. I recently went back to her and told her that I am still experiencing issued down below, burning sensation ever since Zoloft and she said that it is a coincidence! I am sick of doctors, they are full of ****! You tell them one thing and they turn it around! I just prey this eventually goes away and settles down! If this does not settle down I would consider removing sensitive part of my anatomy! I hate it! I can't stand it! How is everyone else coping with this? What have you found that helps? I have not felt peaceful down below for the last 4 weeks! I have never heard of this condition prior to taking antidepressants. Please help, Thank you.
  3. I have been taking Trazadone since January 2014. I started with .75 Traz and have been slowly tapering the past six months. I am now down to .38 Traz after making a cut 2 nights ago from .45 Traz.. I take it at night to sleep along with 7.5 Remeron. I have been doing well with sleeping on the .45 which I have been holding the past 2 months. Last night my sleep was very light and fitful after the cut. I doubt I got that much sleep. Also, this October I will be on year off Ambien 10 mg. I am looking for some encouragement from folks who have been down this road before with Trazadone. Any success stories out there? How did you feel along the way with tapering? How was your sleep? How did you feel one week off Traz, three weeks off, a month off?
  4. I have been on Prozac for about 25 years. I tried to taper few times in the past, but it didn't work. So what can be different this time? I am hoping this board will make the difference. I know I can't do it alone. I am now taking 10 mg Prozac daily. I was on 40 mg about 2 years ago, and took it down very slowly, cutting 5 mg every few months. One reason that it took so long was because I was also tapering clonazepam. Another reason was the failed attempts in the past. What I learned from tapering clonazepam I hope to put into use while tapering Prozac. One lesson that I learned is that you need to do it slow. There is just no other way. Another lesson is that you need support. I am looking for my next cut in a few months and my goal is to be completely drug free by the end of the year. I have been on disability during the last couple of years while recovering from clonazepam withdrawal. It's been hell and I'm still not completely recovered. I am looking to get back to work as soon as I can but I know it could still take more time. The biggest challenge will be to deal with withdrawal and setbacks without going back on Prozac. My hope is that I will be able to do that with the help of this board.
  5. Hello: I am here after a person on another forum (BenzoBuddies) alerted me to the existence of this one when I queried if anyone there had experience with tapering/eliminating Aripiprazole (Abilify). I am currently working on titrating down from the Clonazepam I have been taking. I have hopes of eliminating all the medications listed in my signature, in time. Once I have eliminated the Clonazepam, I would next like to work on the aripiprazole, then the Mirtazapine. I have only very occasionally used the alprazolam. So, I do not see that as a real hurdle. There is an erroneous date listed in my signature. It should be 2012. If someone could guide me in editing it, I would sure appreciate it. It was kind of a mystery just to create it. I hope to find some useful information and encouragement here. I did a big drop of the Clonazepam (50%) on September 19, as instructed by my doctor. Withdrawal symptoms were uncomfortable, but not terrible. Days 1-3 met me with needing a bit more time falling asleep. Days 15-21 met me with some irritability, headache (most days), one night of insomnia, a few days of mild depression and some free-floating anxiety. Day 22 and onward, the aforementioned symptoms were gone and I was feeling better than what was my normal self. I am glad for this. After reading a lot of information (Professor Ashton's manual & on the BenzoBuddies forum), I decided to continue with reducing the Clonazepam at a rate of 25% every 14 days. Yes, I know it is more than recommended (5-10%), but I believe I am capable of proceeding at this rate and take comfort in the fact that I can always adjust my dosing, if needed. My dose tonight will be ~.4700. When I began taking the medications (in 2001), I was diagnosed with PTSD and Major Depressive Disorder (without psychotic symptoms). I did spend some time in a psychiatric hospital (~3.5 weeks), during which time several different medications were tried/thrown at me. I don't remember all of them (prozac & paxil, are two that were tried...). I did not take any but the Clonazepam longer than a few days/weeks. Oh, except lamictal. I took that for about 6 months (in 2001). Almost forgot about that one. A couple other antidepressants were tried just before I began taking the Mirtazapine in 2010: Effexor, Celexa and Trazadone. They all made me feel loopy, so I rejected them. Sleep is what I needed and the Mirtazapine helped to deliver that. The Abilify was a depression add-on which did seem to give me an overall improved affect/mood. Since 2001, I have remained steadfastly committed to and deeply engaged in an in-depth therapeutic relationship (with a couple practitioners). As a result, I have achieved a complete psychological, emotional and spiritual make-over. Over the course of the past couple years, I have questioned if I really have a need to continue taking the medications, for I simply am not the same person I was 17 years, 10 years, 5 years or even 1 year ago. It is my deep hope and desire that I will eliminate the medications. It will be very nice to see who I am today, without the medications. That's my history, in a nutshell. Cleerity
  6. Moderator's note: link to benzo forum thread - EmmiseA: Can I taper an antidepressant and benzo at same time? Hello, I came on here for some much needed advice/ reassurance. Back in March 2018 I had a horrific reaction to being put on Sertraline 25mg for postnatal anxiety/depression. After 2 weeks, the insomnia was dreadful, anxiety and depression was through the roof. I switched onto citalopram 10mg and after no change in symptoms after a few days apart from developing horrible Hypnic jerks, I was told to come off it by my psychiatrist. The brain zaps, skin crawling, heart palpitations and other side effects lessened over a few weeks but I couldn’t sleep due to these awful jerks and my anxiety and depression were through the roof. I went back to my psychiatrist who put me on quitiepine and pregabalin and 1mg clonazepam. I slept on the clonazepam no problem, but still noticed a few jerks on sleep onset. I successfully tapered off the pregabalin, quitiepine and clonazepam with no new effects but the doctors decided I needed an antidepressant and put me on 30mg of Mirtazapine. I am now on Mirtazipine and down to 0.375mg clonazepam, this being given to me again to help the jerks. 5 months later I still have the Hypnic jerks and muscle fasciculations. They haven’t got any worse on the Mirtazapine - if anything they have got somewhat better - but I still have a few nights a month even when I’m this low dose of clonazepam where they don’t allow me any sleep at all, the twitching is so bad. I really really need to hear some success stories of the jerks going away, please!! I’m afraid to touch anything at the moment in terms of the antidepressant, but am still tapering clonazepam with the aim of being off it soon. My aim is to try and get stable with these jerks and my sleep patterns and then very slowly taper off mirtazipine. Please no horror stories, my nerves just can’t take it!! I need to hear success stories. Many thanks xxx
  7. I am trying to taper off 7.5mg of Remeron (Mirtazapine). I want to use the titration method since my CNS is so sensitized at this point.
  8. Community of healing, hello. my name is dave. in february of 2012, things started going terribly wrong. i have always been a person with some anxiety and depression. in fact my parents began medicating me for this when i was in the first grade, when the nuns at the parochial school i attended informed them i wasn't "living up to expectations." at this time (early 80s), the medications were as heavy as they are today - in fact, many of the drugs that were put into my childhood body are currently considered barbaric in standard medical practice. nice. anyway, in my teen years and early 20s, i tried many different medications. prozac, paxil, zoloft, blah blah blah. i wanted to put out the fire - i wanted to mellow out and not feel the anxiety. i wanted to not feel the sadness. i was taught that those things were not ok to feel - that these human emotions were to be avoided at all costs. the line-up that my doctors settled upon were remeron and ativan. the remeron was 7.5mg daily, the ativan .5mg as needed. for over a decade, i kept the remeron between 3.75 and 7.5 - the ativan, between .25 and .5. i've always been a "little dab will do you" individual. when i still consumed alcoholic beverages, i was a totally cheap date. 1 drink felt good, 2 drinks was a nap on the couch. my system has always been highly sensitive, as so many of ours are. in late 2011, the ativan wasn't working anymore. the doctors threw in some xanax and bumped the ativan dose. it helped a little. in early 2012, i noticed some profound dizziness - like i was walking on a swaying ship. i had actually been noticing this for a year or more, doctors could find no pathology to explain it. but it was getting worse. i suspected it was the remeron. my doctor said, "well, stop taking it." so, i ditched the 7.5mg of remeron cold turkey YAHOOOOO! and my system went nuts. i could not eat, i could not sleep. i began losing weight - lots. in hindsight, i realize i was in full benzodiazepine tolerance withdrawal and remeron withdrawal. my doctors said it was "just the anxiety getting worse." they were just about ready to throw some klonopin into the mix when i bailed. i started a rapid taper that essentially amounted to a cold turkey from the ativan and began to suffer intensely. between the months of april 2012 and june 2012, i went from being a solidly built 162lb marathon runner to a 129lb human who could not lift his head off the pillow, barely acknowledged his wife and children, was confused as to who the president was and what month it was, and finally, began having intense violent intrusive thoughts - both suicidal and outwardly motivated. i checked myself into a hospital. i was so scared. i figured that was the thing i needed to do. get fixed. as soon as i got in, they tried to get me to reinstate the benzodiazepines. i refused. in my lucid moments, i had read too much online to do it. they put me on seroquil, which produced serious side effects. they switched me to risperidone and left me with that. i wanted out of the hospital. they became fairly insistent that if i were to do so, i would need to be on another medication. i mentioned reinstating the remeron. they liked that idea. they put me back on 7.5mg. a day later, they bumped me up to 15mg, a day later, they bumped me up to 30mg. my whole body was vibrating. i was having nocturnal emissions nightly in the hospital bed. the intrusive thoughts and all the other withdrawal symptoms skipped along merrily, unaffected by the drugs, but the hospital thought i was "good to go." so off i went. oh, and they handed me a script for valium on the way out "just in case." in the hospital, i mentioned both benzo and antidepressant withdrawal. even offering to show them the ins and outs of the ashton manual, which in the benzo world, is fairly revered. the doctors took a position that what i had to say was of little consequence. they were the doctors after all, they should know best. and any words on my part were greeted as a questioning of their authority. the next 8 to 12 months were essentially hell. i kicked the risperidone to the curb almost immediately. if anything, that anti-psychotic was making things worse. the 30mg of remeron was so damn activating, i wanted to jump out of my skin and climb up trees daily. but i felt stuck on it. when i began experiencing intermittent periods of gradually extending "windows" and "waves," i began to taper the remeron slowly. things were very bad for a very long time. very bad. did i mention that things were VERY VERY BAD? i managed to keep my job. it wasn't easy. when i was at my very worst, i would work from my bed at home. getting up to puke, sitting in a stupor, trying to answer e-mails and phone calls as if my brain were not a bashed-up mess. trying to put together sentences. when i was able to return to work, the intrusive thoughts were so bad, i either stayed glued to my desk, or else went back behind my office building and fought off the daily urge to throw myself into the waters. i wanted to die so bad. those waters were almost calling me into them. i fought back. and i am glad, beyond, that i fought. by the 8 to 9 month mark, things started improving somewhat quickly, the tapering of the remeron was becoming somewhat easier, the benzo symptoms were easing. the windows got longer and longer until the waves became basically a couple hours during a day or two per month. i need to cut this short. i could literally write a book about this whole experience, but i don't want to waste your time and i myself have to boogie. let me just say this. i am still tapering - i am now at 2mg of liquid remeron. i have a pharmacy compound for me. i make 10% cuts, hold for 4 to 6 weeks in between, and go in for another round. when i cut, i feel it the day after i make it - an intensification of the symptoms. things settle for a short while. around the 2 week mark after a cut, it kicks me harder. usually restless legs, nausea, intestinal disturbance, mild insomnia, intensification of anxiety and the desire to cry for no reason at all. the intrusive thoughts are totally gone. i don't experience these anymore. and i am thankful. they were my worst symptom. they plagued me and plagued me and plagued me and they are gone. i try to eat as clean as possible. higher protein, lower carbs, almost no refined sugars. i short-circuit the cortisol response by waking at 0345hrs each morning. i am at the gym very early, i put in a workout, i go to work. i could not exercise at all for the first year after withdrawal. it would activate my central nervous system to much. but now i lift weights and lift heavy and i do only enough cardio to keep that system as optimal as i feel it needs to be. i supplement with whey protein, vitamin d, b vitamin/folic acid, magnesium, and some occasional omegas in the form of either fish oil or hemp protein. i do not drink alcohol. i do not use pot. i consider these substances a colossal waste of time. i do not use any other chemicals that will interfere with my brain chemistry. i'm not sure how much of a hassle these last 2mg will be. i think i will probably be all done with the remeron by the end of 2015, if things keep ticking along. that is my goal at least. after benzo withdrawal, and the remeron withdrawal that followed, i know i can weather whatever storm. i'll own the pain. i'm not a tough guy at all. but withdrawal has showed me two things: that i can live through hell on earth and that the anxiety and depression that underlies my personal psychology is "normal," and manageable without the use of chemical substances. thanks for taking the time to read this. and no matter where you are on your own journey, hang in there. when i was 129lbs and barely able to move, barely cognizant of who i was, i doubted that i would ever heal. i am almost there, community. you will be too. hang in there...
  9. I'm 45 years old. I have been on psychiatric drugs since I was 25. For years, 17, I was on Paxil 20mg and tegretol 200mg. I believed I tripped off my first depression after using ecstasy, which I think altered my brain's serotonin functioning. Four years ago I went to my gynecologist seeking help for worsening pms, as I believed perimenopause was coming into play. I failed to consult with my psychiatrist and trusted her. After a too-quick taper off of Paxil and onto Lexapro things just completely deteriorated. After 6 months I was a wreck, did another, even shorter, taper off of Lexapro back onto Paxil. But I was sunk...I think my central nervous system was wrecked. The ensuing year of onto and off of a variety of drugs was nothing short of a nightmare. Sparing all the details, I landed on the following drugs: Remeron 15mg Paxil 20mg Lamictal 125mg Pristiq 100mg Lithium 600mg Klonopin .5mg Trazodone 50mg It's criminal. A John's Hopkins psychiatrist specializing in women's hormone related mood issues said my gynecologist's cavalier actions verged on malpractice. A recent, and current, rash believe to be pityriasis rosea prompted my current psychiatrist to insist I stop Lamictal cold turkey. The dermatologist diagnosed it. He, without seeing the rash himself, is insistent. In light of what I feel is a damaged central nervous system I have decided to trust my dermatologist. That said, this situation has prompted me to consider the idea of eliminating the Lamictal. It's a start. I also believe Lamictal in some way tinkers with estrogen, something I'd like to avoid. It has been a hellish journey. I do not trust the psychiatric industry. I believe that how my case has been handled, so carelessly and without regard to actual true health, is shameful. I never, ever thought I'd be on multiple drugs like this. I am a high functioning, intelligent woman with a constitution sensitive to endocrine changes. I have been terrified of even considering touching any of this. While in the back of my mind wondering....what will happen to me after years of being on so many drugs? For the record, I have never been manic, ever. Lithium does function for me as an antidepressant. I understand that I'm somewhere on the spectrum, and because of long periods of happiness and wellbeing interrupted by 3 episodes of major depression, each with clear origins, I have been labeled bipolar2. I don't care much for labels. All I know is I'm on a serious amount of drugs. And I'm finally willing to find the courage to wrap up this bizarre ride. Lamictal first. Thanks for reading. Any encouragement or feedback gladly welcomed. Hope
  10. Hi I am new to this forum and this is my first post . I am currently on 30mg mirtazapine and 200mg of pregablin , I have been on these mess for about 3 to 4 months . I have just cut my mirtazapine from 30mg to 15mg and in the space of 4 days I have have horrible side effects , anxiety through the roof , shaking , lack of appetite poor sleep crying spells and the general feeling of feeling crap . The reason I have started to withdraw from the mirtazapine is that after 3 months I feel no benefit only get awfull side effects . No help with my anxiety and depression if anything it's made me more depressed . I have gone through withdrawing from Effexor and that was really tough , however just the drop for a few days of the mirtazapine has left me crushed , my doctor told me that mirtazapine was a easy drug to withdraw from , but after 4 days it has left me house bound . Has anyone got any idea on how I get through this or any experience in mirtazapine withdrawals
  11. After 15 years on 7.5mgs of Remeron I decided to taper off on April 1, 2019. I cut in half to 3.75 mgs for 25 days. Then I stopped taking it since April 25th. About a week later I started itching and having all kinds of skin burning symptoms. After 5 days of this I realized that I might be having withdrawal symptoms. I just reinstated at 7.5mgs two days ago but am having all kinds of spaciness and discomfort. I know it will take about a week for my blood levels of Remeron to stabilize and hope this stops the withdrawal. I now realize that I should have tapered very slowly and just did not realize how strong even my low dose of 7.5mgs could be. I was totally stable until a week ago so I hope that I caught this quickly enough. So my history is: 7.5mgs Remeron for 15 years....very stable and no issues. Cut to 3.75mgs Remeron for 25 days. Stopped completely for 7 days before any withdrawal symptoms started on May 2nd, 2019 Reinstated 7.5 mgs on day 12 of cold turkey on May 7th, 2019 Itching symptoms have stopped almost completely after 2 days of reinstating but having spaciness and general body discomfort and edginess. My thought is to stabilize and wait a few months before tapering again at no more than 10% per month as recommended. Any advise would be much appreciated. I hope I am doing this right to stabilize? Thanks!
  12. BuddhaMama

    BuddhaMama: Intro

    Hello everyone, I am a longtime lurker, only first posting now as I get ready to begin my taper from Remeron (Mirtazipine). I am seeking support here for my taper as I cannot count on support from my doctors. My husband is minimal support as he has his own mental health issues and we have a new baby. I'm ready to come off the Remeron mostly because I don't want to be on it forever and I feel like it got me through the hump of the early postpartum period, which was what I needed. I have gained 15-20lb on this med which is annoying because I am not one to gain weight normally, so I know it's the drug. I lost all the baby weight within the first month after I delivered and didn't start Remeron until month 2. I feel tired all the time (though it does help me sleep as i take it at night), and it makes me crave sugar and carbs like crazy. I'm also now starting to experience bodyside joint pain, which I've never had before. That seems to go away somewhat when i eliminate wheat from my diet. I have gotten my doctor to order me a solution of mirtazipine from compounding pharmacy, but after paying $54 fir an Rx that I usually get for free, I think I will try making my own solution using the tablets and the Oraplus I read about in the forums here. I'm nervous to begin my taper because the first time I tried at the beginning of December I went down by a 1/4 tablet for a week and every day I had excruciating headaches. BY the end of that week I was experiencing nausea and anxiety. AS SOON as I reinstated my full dose, all symptoms disappeared. I have a feeling I'll need to begin my taper at 5% rather than 10% given how sensitive I am. I would love to hear some encouraging success stories of coming of this drug slowly, as it seems it will take me long rot get off it that I was even on it to begin with. Other relevant info: I am 5 months post partum, have been on Remeron for 4 of those 5 months. I am married and have another child who is nearly 11 years old. I work part time and used to have regular exercise and meditation practices that have both fallen by the wayside with the new baby. I also can no longer tolerate alcohol. I've been off alcohol for several years (not because of AA or addiction issue, but because it makes me feel awful), and recently I thought I would try a half glass of wine with the holidays. Big mistake. Major depression and anxiety the next day. Good riddance.I'd much rather feel well and not drink at all. I think that's it for now!
  13. Moderator note: Link to Nikki74's benzo thread: lexapro kindling akasthesia Mirtazipine diazepam Help. i recently stopped lexapro after a short taper from ten to five mg over 9 days. i had been on 20mg since 2011 then tapered quickly in June and stopped. This was a few weeks after stopping pregabalin 150mg v abruptly. all this time I was also on 15mg Mirtazipine. my anxiety went crazy and gp told me to double Mirtazipine dose to 30. I lasted 3 weeks of hellish symptoms and was put on diazepam and Zopiclone. im now off Zopiclone which was tough. 6 weeks ago GP told me to go back to 15mg Mirtazipine and add in 10mg lexapro. This didn't help so now have stopped lexapro three days ago but took 2.5 mg last night as am feeling withdrawal. gp wants me to start tapering diazepam as I'm getting worse akasthesia when it wears off or even a paradoxical reaction to it. i have akasthesia. Insomnia. Severe anxiety. Shaking. Muscle weakness. Obsessive thoughts and suicidal ideation as cannot go on like this. The only brief ride break I get is the 15mg Mirtazipine which calms me for 2-3 hours. How can I go on? i am a single mum and have CFS already for many years. do I stay off the Lexapro now? How do I cope with withdrawals, akasthesia, and tapering diazepam?? I take 7mg a day been on it three months. i can't stop in one place and am smoking (just tobacco) every half hour. i got sober in 2013. this is hell.
  14. Hi folks, First of all I'm new to this site, so feel free to tell me I'm in the wrong area or redirect me.. But here's my story... I currently have what I think is severe anhedonia. Last July, I was a bit depressed (I stress a bit, not majorly).......doctor gave me lexapro 10. After taking this, I vomited on the first night and developed sleep problems. Later in the week, I was given 25 seroquel which apparently would help balance out adverse effects of lexapro.......by the end of the week, I wasn't sleeping and I was suicidal. I subsequently was admitted to hospital. In hospital, I got more and more meds thrown at me and my mid august I was on 125 seroquel, 30 mirtazapine, 20 lexapro, 20 Olanzapine/Zyprexa....My main problem was the medication ripped my stomach apart.....the docs didn't believe me and just gave me more and more meds. I left hospital anyway on the concoction I mentioned.....I spent the following four months on these meds. During those four months, I felt no emotion whatsever, nothing. I felt suicidal, and that I would never recover. I had no desire to do anything. I just stayed in bed until late in the day, even though my sleep did not feel like real sleep. By mid November, i realised that the medication was messing me up, I demanded that I gradually come off everything. On that day, the doctor dropped the mirtazapine, and cut everything else in half. There was a quick taper, maybe too quick, and by christmas eve I was off everything. There were brief windows of emotion during the taper but still 95% anhedonia. Days after I went off everything....I cried for the first time in six months.....days later I laughed for the first time in months... I'm now 6 weeks off everything, I had huge headaches up unitl last week. My stomach started to improve after going off everything and is on the mend. However, I'm still worried about emotions/desires/thoughts etc.....over the last six weeks....I've had maybe 5 occassions where I felt strong positive emotions...and maybe 3 times where I've been sad/angry to the point of proper crying. outside of those 8 occassions, there's still an awful amount of flat feeling, apathy etc... I'm worried and wonder how long or if I will recover at all. Feedback welcome!!
  15. Muddles

    Muddles: desperate

    Hi there! Need a bit of advice. My father passed away Christmas Eve :-( I have been on mirtazapine 15mg for 4 years. Since my father passed I have been experiencing a lot of strange & worrying stuff which I can only explain as withdrawal symptoms from mirtazapine. Depression - severe, insomnia, mind chatter, body buzzing, twitches, jerks of legs/arms, panick attack, anxiety etc. I went to see my doctor as my friends and family are concerned. She wants me to up my dose but am not sure i should do it. Could it make things worse? I feel upping may cause more problems. I felt sooo depressed this morning and slowly withdrawing from everybody...scared! Thanks in advance.
  16. I’m new to this website/forum, but I’ve been researching and finding great information about people getting off their psychiatric medication. I’m 46, and I was 20 years old in college when I experienced my first full blown panic attack (official diagnosis, panic disorder without agoraphobia, generalized anxiety disorder, depression). Looking back (after lots of therapy), I can now understand the stress I was under at that time. But the main point is that I was put on zoloft and lorazepam which, combined with lots of “social drinking” seemed to put a lockdown on the panic attacks (though I would still wake up with some varying degrees of anxiety most mornings). I put my head down and just sort of pushed my way through life, graduating from college with honors, holding a job doing community education / organizing / speaking, shifting gears and going back to school, and then starting my own successful business. Jump to about 4 years ago, 2012 and things just seemed to begin falling apart. The successful company I had created was now failing, a relationship I actually felt invested in was failing, and the hangovers from drinking had become really intense. In short, I ran out of steam. I gave up drinking in the spring of 2014, and that summer decided I was going to get off the damn meds. I did it the “right way,” tapering off the benzos first, and then the SSRI. And though the anxiety would increase while tapering and it was tough, by the end of the summer (early September) I was actually med free! Unfortunately, mid-October the panic attacks returned full force. Again, I can see now that this was a particularly stressful period of my life, but of course I was really disappointed when I decided I just had to get back on the meds (the panic attacks were relentless and excruciating). The problem was that the meds no longer seemed to work like they did before. And now I’m on MORE meds (add in remeron and extra 50 mg of zoloft). I have made some changes, doing lots of therapy, ACA support groups (and looking at childhood issues generally), exercising again regularly, EMDR, meditation, etc. And I want OFF the meds! I know I need to do this slowly, and at this point, I cut the remeron from 15 mg to 7.5 (about 1.5 months ago) and I’ve cut the benzo (now clonazepam) from 2 mg to 1.5 per day (just started that 3 days ago). My thought is to cut the benzos first, then the last of the remeron. I know with the relatively long half-life of the clonazepam, I need to take it slowly. I’m thinking .5 mg every 2 weeks. From the information I've come across, it seems like some taper off even more slowly than that? I'm looking for others to share their experiences with their own clonazepam withdrawal schedules (for panic disorder, preferably). I just don’t know what to do about the SSRI (zoloft). I realize this website is about benzo withdrawal, but I’m hoping to find others with experience on panic disorder and SSRI withdrawal too (as well as benzo withdrawal support). I hope this is OK on this forum? I’ve been “working with the anxiety” (trying to “make friends” with it as they say in the meditation circles). I know I’m less scared of it now, but I'm also not experiencing the full blown panic attacks. My concern is that I would get off everything (including the SSRI/zoloft) and then the panic attacks return, and it takes SO LONG for the SSRI to build up in one’s system. Do I just prepare myself to weather that storm? Will that storm really pass eventually without the meds? After years of trying to make my physiology match the lifestyle I felt I should lead, I’m now accepting the idea that I need to make my lifestyle match my physiology. The panic attacks are just so damn awful when they hit relentlessly all day long, day after day. I’m scared. Is there anyone out there that has had any experience with the meds and panic attacks along the lines that I have had? Are there other resources out there I should know about? Is it really possible that I can live a purposeful (and perhaps at least semi-peaceful) life without meds after 25 years of being on them? Much gratitude . . .
  17. My first post here... I have been taking Remeron (Mirtazapine) for 16 years. I tried to come off of it in October, but I weaned too fast and have had problems ever since. I tried to taper off of 15 mg. I ignored my doctor's fast tapering plan and tapered from 15 mg. to 10 mg. The first part of the month was fine, but then a delayed withdrawal hit with horrible symptoms including insomnia. At that point I was only sleeping about 4 hours a night. I reinstated so that I could continue to work... back to 15 mg. In hindsight I realized now I shouldn't have been changing doses so fast. After having reinstated now for about a month, I am still waking up every night in the middle of the night wired! Why??? Could I still be having withdrawal symptoms even after I've been back to my original dose that I was sleeping well on? I want to try to withdraw again, even slower but I don't know how I'll do this if my sleep is already so poor! Thank you!!!
  18. I've been trying to come off Mirtazapine, which I have been taking for 12 years, for 15 months now. I gradually reduced my dose from 15mg and then started tapering properly by 10% from 3mg 6 months ago. I got down to 1.8 mg and last week my doctor said I could just stop as it is not a therapeutic dose, which I did. I feel ok, sleep is a bit more disturbed, but I'm worried this may not have been a low enough dose to stop at. If so, what is?
  19. username: BJFM when stopping remeron : withdrawal symptoms: stomach pain, nausea,slow digestion, etc...loose weight don't eat much.( stop remeron 3 wks, take doxepin 1 wk, reinstate remeron) reinstate 3.75. mg remeron + dompéridone 10 days, up dose to 7.5 mg + dompéridone since april 17th. gradual progress, now,no more stomach pain and nausea (still use dompéridone), I think I eat normal but don't understand why still loosing weight, SCARY questions: should I raise remeron or stay on 7,5 mg? While on remeron 2014-2017 never had any kind of digestive problems, can I hope to feel that way again? thank you very nuch
  20. Hello SA members, I am new here. Before June 2017 I was taking Lexapro/60mg and Lithium/600mg, I stopped cold turkey, did well for 2 months but ended up going to the ER for insomnia, was sleeping less than 2 hrs. at night. I didn’t know anything about withdrawals weeks ago; the doctors don’t talk about it, they just want to put you on something. I spent 10 days in the Psych ward in Sept/2017, they started me on Remeron 15mg and Effexor 37.5/75/112.5/150mg, after I left the hospital my psychiatric increased to Remeron 45mg and Effexor ER 150mg. Since I started Effexor ER 150 noticed hyperactivity episodes, so the Dr. decreased to 112.5mg and I have been trying to stay on 75mg I want to start to taper them and when I stop my final doses I want to replace them with supplements and vitamins. It's been only a month since I started taking Remeron and Effexor. I am scared and confused of what to do and how to do it. Please help.
  21. Hi everyone, I am looking to restart cymbalta and hopefully get myself back to a stable place. I would love input. My doctor (psychiatrist) seems to think I could start with my previous dosage of 20mg, but after a horrendous experience trying to get back on celexa starting with just 5mg, I am VERY hesitant and don't want to go through anything like that again. Here is my history: ~12 years successfully on 20mg generic celexa --> successful switch over to ~2.5 years generic cymbalta --> slow-ish (I thought at the time) taper off over ~1.5 months (stopped 12/17) --> currently 8.5 months off and not doing well at all.7/2018 Tried to go back on generic celexa starting at 5 mg. Stuck it out for ~9 days, never made it up past 5mg. Had a terrible reaction to it. Dr thinks maybe because it was a different brand from the 10 years before. He questioned whether it was just my anxiety in reaction to it, but it was entirely too physical to be just my thinking-- Gripping panic, terror, crazy thoughts, felt possessed, arms and hands suddenly dead and heavy like they stopped working, immediate emotional numbness, genital numbness, inability to cry, appetite zapped gone (had to force every bite I ate for those 10 days, got down to my lowest weight ever, and not in a good way), unable to work or think straight, agitation, thought I would need to be hospitalized.8/2018 Tried Remeron. Wanted something that would not cause sexual side effects, so even though I had never taken it, dr recommended it. 7.5mg. First night bad restless legs. Got up to 15mg for ~2 weeks. Munchies. Slept. But neither in a nice way, more a zombie-ish way. Very tired and fatigued. Continued inability to think straight or work. Anxiety was sedated. Depression was sedated. More emotional numbness. Literally could not think. The depression did feel like it might have been starting to lift, but I needed to be able to think, and didn't want to keep experimenting with whether I could get to a dose that would not be so sedating, so I went down to 7.5mg/day then to 3.5 mg /day and have still been taking this just to try to stabilize. Having severe anxiety and depression though still.Currently experiencing: panic, depersonalization, depression, and for the first time in my life pretty severe anhedonia (pleasurable feelings and other emotions feel offline and physically inaccessible... including 'tools' I would use before: gratitude, feelings of spirituality, humor, warmth of relating).Looking to try reinstating generic cymbalta 9/2018.Doc suggested starting at 20mg, we agreed on 10mg (since I had such a strong reaction to attempt to restart celexa at 5mg). I would love to hear people's thoughts on slowly restarting cymbalta to try to get back to a stable place. I basically cannot go on in the panicked, anxious, depressed state that I am in. I have tried to white knuckle the panic the past months and it has only seemed to lead into a depression with anhedonia and my emotions shutting off in a way I have never experienced before and which is terrifying. Restarting at 10 mg cymbalta seems ok... and I'm looking to make sure it's the same brand as before... but I did have an intense bad reaction to just 5mg of celexa, so I think I might be very sensitive at this point. Also my Dr. recommended I stop the 3.5 mg remeron the same day I restart the cymbalta. Thoughts?
  22. Hello, I am a 50 year old woman with a history of depression. Here is my story and it is a long one, be warned - if you aren't in the mood for a long history, skip this now LOL! I'm one of those people whose family relations have also had histories of depression, and depression became an issue for me from maybe 10 years old and up, though no one really recognized it. I became bulimic at 16 and remained so for much of my adult life until about eight years ago. My adult-hood has been one of perfectionism, low self-esteem and under-performing, with all the self-hatred that that generates. My first experience with medication came after a rough relationship where I ended up feeling suicidal. I was put on Prozac. I think back to that being the beginning of the rest of my adulthood with virtually no libido. A major move after marriage led me to more depression, and at that time Wellbutrin was being marketed heavily, so I asked my GP to put me on it. No tapering of the Prozac, if I recall. Wellbutrin didn't work, but now I realize it was probably in part because I was having withdrawal from the Prozac - not sure and I don't have a lot of memories about that period one way or another. I forget if I continued the Wellbutrin up to the next change, but I had gotten the flu which turned into pneumonia for a month, and when I went to the doctor after that long of not getting better, he said "you are depressed." Well, yes, I said, I am depressed because of being sick this long! And he said, No, you are clearly a generally depressed person and you should see a p-doc. So, I did, and that doc put me on Effexor. This was somewhere back around 11 years ago. I upped the dose as they directed. I never felt like my depression was well-controlled because none of the therapy I had over the years was CBT - talk therapy would make me feel better for the moment but no change took place, so the low self-esteem and negative thinking remained. I guess the Effexor somehow made my life more tolerable, but I never felt happy or satisfied with myself. Somewhere along the line I began to taper down on the Effexor, and I have very few memories of when, how or why, other than that I hated needing ADs, and my libido sucked. A move and the loss of an old dog sent me into another bad depression, but this well could have coincided with stepping down the Effexor. Three years ago, I lost my job, and then my husband lost his, but then he got a new one which required relocating to a very hot climate where we were able to afford a home with acreage, the first time we were ever able to own, but it was very rural and the isolation quickly got to me, with anxiety increasing for various reasons. Again, I don't remember the stepping down process, but two years ago a new GP refilled my Effexor but prescribed the non-extended release version. Since these tablets were able to be broken, I began taking just half (37.5 mg). Last summer I had a bought of shingles and became very depressed and stressed again from the pain. I also was clearly in menopause and having severe hot flashes. My whole adult life had been marred by low libido since going on Prozac way back when, and the shingles were actually on my private parts (tested positive for zoster, not herpes) and I became very concerned that I didn't want the rest of my life to be joyless where sex was concerned, so I decided to go off BCPs and Effexor. In hind sight, that was madness! I stepped down the Effexor, going to every other day with the 37.5 mg. I wasn't aware of any severe symptoms, and this was last summer. Well, meanwhile, I was going through some stresses regarding a health crisis with one of my dogs. I found myself totally scatter-brained, forgetful, unable to concentrate, and also I had trouble articulating myself, unable to complete thoughts when talking with people, words hard to reach. A friend told me he always thought I was ADD, and indeed at this time I was losing things, forgetting what I was doing halfway through doing it, easily distracted, etc. I'm also a total clutter-bug who can't face doing the dishes or cleaning the house, though I've been that way for years. I had started taking Sam-e and tryptophan as a way to up serotonin. I was having a terrible time with insomnia. So, I went to get tested for ADD. I tested negative, but the psychologist doing the testing said I didn't have ADD, but that I did have OCD, depression, and GAD. He said, the good news is that there are medications that can make you "normal!" I bit, and went to a p-doc on a list he gave me. She put me on Viibryd. I stopped the serotonergic supplements. The first week at 10 mg was ok, but when I went up to 20 mg as instructed, all hell broke loose! My insomnia worsened, with the most severe anxiety I think I had ever experienced! All night I was thrashing around with racing, troubling thoughts. During the day, I would have squirts of adrenalin for no reason. I had days where I was so distressed and troubled, I couldn't stand to exist. I had global anxiety about climate change, getting old, my parents getting old losing them some day, the drought and how horrible life was! I have never experienced anxiety like that in my life! I stepped the Viibryd back down to 10 mg for about a week and then stopped it, and went back on the supplements. This time I was trying to follow the supplement plan laid out in the Mood Cure, adding GABA and some other stuff. I'd do ok for awhile, but the insomnia was still bad, and the general feeling of being ill-at-ease was so disturbing, I just couldn't stand it. So, I stopped the supplements and started taking 37.5 mg of Effexor again. After three days, I was in serotonin syndrome almost to the point of having to go to the ER! I stopped the Effexor and got an appointment with another p-doc who is a DO and actually not into psych meds. He said I'd been through about 3 years' worth of med changes in a very short period of time and that my nerves were very sensitive and that I needed consistency. He went through the meds and supplements I had a history with, and told me which supplements were safe to take (non-serotonergic). Since I had not been able to eat and lost weight, and the insomnia was so bad, he put me on Remeron, saying it was a very gentle med that worked on a different part of the serotonin pathway, and that it would help with sleep and appetite. He started me on 7.5 mg and said I could step it up as needed, that it was safe up to 60 mg. Well, I felt much better and it was nice to sleep all through the night without anxiety again. Yeah! But after a week, I was feeling down again so started upping the dose. Two weeks later I was at 37.5 mg, feeling totally apathetic and on the couch, unable to do anything I had previously enjoyed in life. I couldn't understand why the med wasn't working anymore! I was in a desperate way and called this p-doc's assistant, the fastest way to get to him, he said. I left four messages and never heard back! I suffered through to my next scheduled appointment with him two weeks later, and suffering it was! My family members were greatly concerned. The only thing that kept me going through this spell was the fact that a therapist I had recently seen told me about Emotional Brain Training, which I joined. It was developed by Laurel Mellin at UCSF and is based on neuroplasticity and rewiring the brain. It was perfect for me because I lived in the country, was isolated, and the city is 40 minutes away, so I was able to get support from home with weekly phone-in meetings with a coach and group members, daily work online, and daily phone-connections with group members. I am not hawking this, but if you want to learn more about it, go to www.ebt.org. Anyway, EBT kept me from going down the tubes through all of this. When I saw my p-doc, he said "let's add Effexor back to the remeron since you tolerated it well in the past." I started on 37.5 mg. The day I took it, I was having a non-functional couch day, and I would say within an hour of taking it, my mood lifted, like a light switch had been flipped! It was miraculous! Now, everyone knows that ADs are supposed to take weeks to start working. I now realize that the reason it worked so fast was because I was in withdrawal and it was like a junkie getting a hit of the drug they are withdrawing from - instant fix! Ok, I know my story is long but the final chapter is here: I added the Effexor back about 12 days ago. I actually had one day, about a week into it, where I was on the couch again. The next day, I saw a third p-doc my therapist said I should see since I had such a bad experience with the last guy's non-responsiveness when I left those messages. So, I saw this new guy on Wednesday. I didn't yet realize that all of the craziness I had endured since last fall was because of the withdrawal. I was convinced that genetically, I just had to be on ADs, that I had relapsed in a big way. I did think that the Viibryd had damaged me, since I had never experienced anxiety to that degree before, nor had I had depression this debilitating. This new guy said, "let's stick with this for now, since you haven't been on the Effexor long enough to see how it will work for you, but I want to up it to 75 mg (thanks to that couch day). We may end up changing you to other meds, but let's see how this goes for now." So, I began taking 75 mg Effexor ER on Thursday. It just so happens that one of my EBT connection buddies is going through withdrawal from ADs that she was put on for post-partum depression 8 years ago. She told me about this, and referred me to a neat video about neuroplasticity on beyondmeds.com. Her point in doing so was to point out about how EBT is so dead-on about retraining the brain, but in fact I had locked on to concept of withdrawal, and I began to realize that this was so much of what I had and am still going through, and this is why the Effexor worked immediately! So, I am faced with the fact that I am now back on the drug that I was hooked on. For now, I need to be consistent and not change anything, though I am going back to 37.5 mg Effexor since I'd only been on the higher dose for a couple of days. I will ride this out until my next appointment with the p-doc in five weeks. I am worried that he will be one to poo-poo withdrawal. I feel like, for the first time in my life, I am getting the cognitive help I need to eliminate the poor self-esteem and my negative black and white thinking that has ruined my life and got me started on ADs to begin with. I feel this will be critical to getting off these drugs some day. I feel so grateful to the universe for bringing me together with my connection buddy who brought this all to light for me. And beyondmeds.com brought me here.
  23. *Symptoms are in BOLD font, the other things are just my story. I have quit Remeron since 64 days now (quit it abruptly), i am not so sure if these symptoms i am facing are due to my withdrawal. and i really need help with that! so if you think these symptoms are familiar please let me know. my life is a nightmare right now, and only yesterday i realized that this craziness that i am living in is maybe because of the medication. i used to fight my ego for (as i thought it was the reason for all of this) i thought that i was over demanding and needy. but no man, i can't be demanding these very basic things that are absolutely have no link with consumption. i am a very thoughtful guy, a bookish person, very honest with myself, i don't just blame something for being the reason of my shity life. but now my concentration is zero, like a maniac anything that is moving around me grabs my concentration immediately. i used to be very chill and calm ( i am still for everybody else, but from the inside it's just torture) but at this stage, i am pretty confident that this is just not normal. my symptoms are as follow: I have had an emotional shock before quieting, it made me less concentrated, and at that stage remeron was not doing a good job as it used to be. i made a trip for 1 month and i quit it during that trip. after i got back, things started to get so bad. i am literally fearful of light, i just turn off the lights and sleep by myself wishing that no body would come in. fearful of my own family, meeting someone by chance. it's not like normal fear, it's just my heart starts beating so fast that i am paralyzed and can't do anything. i am absolutely disconnected from reality, i don't have any logical thinking (i find it hard to differentiate between what is right and what is wrong), ideas cannot be linked together in anyway. i would be thinking about something and an another totally different idea just swipe me with it (like a hallucination, it grabs my attention and just hold on it) - severe depression (even though the feeling of depression is not a problem anymore comparing it to these other things), i am totally fine with depression, but not having a sense of reality is just something that i don't think anyone could handle, i just can't think because my mind keeps jumping with other useless stuff. i think i have a digestive problems, dry mouth, cramps (especially when i sleep). - social anxiety, with the same type of fear. - raceful and self harm thoughts , suicidal thoughts - sometimes hallucinations (i see dark objects on the floor, that do not exist) - excessive sexual desire - stiff muscles all the time, even when i wake up i feel tired as if i was running or smth (i forgot what the concept "relaxation" even means) - i have a problem waking up in the morning, with a very very bad depression (i hated the sun (light) for this reason). are these a symptoms of withdrawing? or am i having a rough days? and if it is, for how long would it take? is it better to keep going cold turkey? (i don't have any problem with it, i can handle it) but i don't know does it have any dangerous results (medically speaking)? Thank you ❤️
  24. Hi I'm new here although I have been lurking for a couple months. Long story short, I ended up on Remeron this past February after my brain went 'tilt' and I went into a severe depression brought about by severe insomnia brought about by my body going into perimenopause. I am one of the ones who truly needed medication and I am fortunate that the first med they put me on was successful in curbing the depression. But I've put on over 30 lbs and I am tired of not feeling 'myself' and having no motivation. I started tapering in October. I am now down to 24 mg of Remeron. The only W/D symptoms I've had so far was, twice I was woken up from a sound sleep from early morning cortisol surges. I am doing the 10% of your last dose method that I found on this forum. Only problem is that my scale goes down only to .01 grams instead of .001 grams. I'm hoping my taper goes well enough that I won't need to purchase another scale but I will if it becomes necessary. Today is the first time I feel more 'normal' than I ever have since this whole ordeal started. I actually baked some pumpkin bread. And I actually feel like doing some house cleaning - something that has gone by the wayside since this past February. So I thought I'd post here that way I can kinda keep track and have an anonymous journal of sorts. Thanks to those who have contributed all of the valuable information in this forum. I wouldn't have felt comfortable starting a taper without it. I probably would have asked my Dr. who most likely would have had me taper much too fast.
  25. hey, i have been experiencing some really bad distress lately. i was put on lexapro 10mg in april 2017 for depression at 18 years old. after one month i experienced the all familiar sexual dysfunction, but since it seemed to give me some relief, i continued to take it, as this was also a stressfull part of my life, with exams during my final school year. after 6-7 months on lexapro i decided i have had enough and quit the medication cold turkey. my immediate withdrawals werent so bad. i felt a sense of light headedness during the day which only lasted about 2 seconds each time, paired with restlessness. it lasted for about a month until it was over. i got on remeron 2 months later and only stayed on it for about 2,5 months before i tapered it over a period of 4 weeks with no symptoms really. now its close to over 8 months since i quit lexapro and i still have some form of sexual function. i cant get erect through thoughts and images, and need physical stimulation either by me or my girlfriend. when im erect i also have very little senseitvity in my penis. at best its a slight ticklish feeling on the penis head. my erections are sometimes hard, but also vanish quickly, though i have had some recent success with the use of cockrings for harder and long lasting erections. my other major symptom is emotional numbness. at the moment i can feel anxiety, sadness through periods of crying, which mostly is triggered by the thought that this is gonna be permanent, and i will never have a fucntion body and brain again. i can still laugh and smile, but it all feels sort of fake and artifical. i havent experienced joy that could be with my for days and get me through several days at the time since i started this medication. the feelings of happiness i get is only in my thoughts, as in i know i should be happy about something, but i dont feel it in my body, just my mind, i dont get a body high from emotions to put it another way. after i started meditating during my remeron taper was about the same time i started seeing my current gf, and i could feel some form of sexual energy going through me parts of the day, and during meditation. it didnt even have to be fully sexual, just her sitting on my lap or w/e, and i would start to get horny and get a small erection going for a bit. it calmed me down in the moment because i already knew about pssd and feared the worst, however that has since dissappered, and hasnt returned for a couple of months. im really looking for answers as my GP and psychiatrist dont believe this really exist, or it is a result of depression. i know for a fact i am not depressed, becuase i rememeber the day i woke up with depression as a day with a gray feeling in chest, sort of where i would get that infaction feel when you crush on someone. that feeling is not present now, and i feel that its just the emotions lacking at this point. for my symptoms i just did a bloodcheck for hormones like test to see if those are the causes for genital numbness, but i doubt it. im writing this short story because im really getting worried that my life will never be like it used to. i will never experience happiness from talking to someone or seeing them again, i will never feel pleasure from sex, which has been pretty barren since i got together with my gf, we only managed it two times. im either not erect enough or losing it just as im inserting the penis, but my psychiatrist says its just mental, which it might very well be to a certain extent. im honestly just looking for some reassurense from someone that this will be over at some point. im hoping it wont 3-5 years like many success stories i read, but if thats the case, so be it. im will be happy if i will get back to normal at some point before my mid to late twenties, becasue i honestly dont think i can go on like this forever, this is just torture. the worst and most raging part about my AD journey was that my doctor assured me that lexapro was "neutral" in his word, and side effects were minor, and i took it because of me being in a vunerable posistion and needing some relief, but now i think im in this for the long run, or the rest of my life, but thats not really an option. i just feel tricked and scammed down to the worst level, even tho i can barely feel anything, i can feel so much anger towards that GP. i dont know how this story reads, because english isnt my native language, but im just looking if anyone can tell me this will be okay and that in years i can write my complete success story, though i dont know what to expect in the coming months or years. please excuse any silly mistakes, this was written in a hurry and i just want some feedback to hopefully calm my mind.
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