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Sandi4116: trying, trying and trying!


sandi4116

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Hello everyone!

I just joined here and am hopeful to get some information and support.

I have been on fluoxetine for about 8 years and zoloft about 4 years prior to that.

 

I still get anxious here and there and sometimes feel really sad for no reason.  I should actually be happy and thankful for everything going on in my life right now!  

 

So why the sadness?  Why the anxiety? Why the nervousness?  It's so frustrating to me that when I am at a good place in my life I should be feeling GOOD and HAPPY

 

I really want to start coming off the meds but am really scared.  I don't want to relapse and especially don't want to feel this way.

Have been on fluoxetine for the past 8 years and zoloft 5 years prior to that

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Welcome Sandi,

 

You've found this site at a very good time - before you started trying to taper etc.  Having the right information can make a huge difference to how things go for you.  I understand that frightened feeling - I had it too, and I'll bet most of us did when we first got here.  It will probably start to ease once you get more familiar with all this. 

 

So why the sadness?  Why the anxiety? Why the nervousness?

 

Antidepressants (bizzarley) cause these and other things like depression things to worsen.  It is at this stage that many people start switching meds in the hope of finding more help.  But it appears that once the initial window of usefulness has passed, that's it.   Anatomy of an Epidemic does a good job of explaining this.  It's then better to taper than to get more entangled.

 

Regarding relapse, it's important not to confuse it withdrawal symptoms - that trips a lot of people up.  When you are tapering you may experience difficult emotions, but you can learn the self-care to deal with them - we have a forum for that too.  They will pass eventually, and you'll get your old self back again.  You could have a read about what withdrawal can be like:  http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/82-the-windows-and-waves-pattern-of-stabilization/

 

We recommend tapering by no more than 10% of your dose each month, in order to minimise w/d symptoms.  It also gives your brain time to heal as you go.  Here are the Tips for Tapering Fluoxetine.

 

Why don't you start off by having a read of those links, and then come back to this thread to ask any questions you may have.  You're in control of this process, and you can go as slow as you like.  You will be okay!

 

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.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

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

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Hi sandi-- welcome to the group. It's refreshing to have someone show up who isn't in pain. I so glad you're in good place in your life, but sorry that the drugs are spoiling it for you.  We should be able to really help.  Having been on fluoxetine for eight years it's probably beginning to loose it's effectiveness for you which is why you are feeling the negativity.  When it gets to this point there are two ways to go either up or down in dose.  We do not recommend going up because all it ends up doing is compounding the problems.  There is no need to be scared of coming off of it either, as you seem to be in a stable place a slow taper will get you off with a minimum of symptoms.  Before you start planning a taper there are some things you should read to help get you informed:

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?

 

Preparing to taper

 

Tips for tapering off Prozac (fluoxetine)

 

If you would please add a signature block it would be really helpful for us to see exactly what is going on.

 

Karen beat me by thirty seconds so I ended up repeating a lot of what she said, which was all good.

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

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

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

 

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

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Sorry Brass - I keep saying that us Kiwis are ahead of the rest of the world :)

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.

My story of healing:ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor; please do your own research and be able to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

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

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