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Altostrata

Many people experience overpowering or disturbing emotions while tapering and as part of withdrawal syndrome.

 

Many of the symptoms of withdrawal syndrome arise from autonomic nervous system dysfunction. The distressed nervous system itself can generate intense uncomfortable feelings -- see Neuro emotions

 

The best way to treat this is to help your nervous system to repair itself, to return to its "factory-installed" state. Recovery from withdrawal syndrome is gradual, inconsistent, and can take a long time. In the meantime, you can help your nervous system heal by using non-drug techniques to lessen your anxiety about your condition, deal with long-standing emotional issues, and cope with symptoms.

 

You may also get anxious or depressed about having odd symptoms because you have beliefs that add to your distress, such as a feeling of helplessness or being a failure. Or, you may feel strong emotions as the drugs no longer mask underlying emotional pain.

 

Read these non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms for ideas that may aid your recovery. Whether they are "neuro-emotions" caused by neurological upset, distress arising from your situation, or a natural disposition towards worrying, anxiety, pessimism, or self-sabotage, learning techniques to manage them will benefit you throughout your life.

__________________________________________________

WITHDRAWAL-RELATED EMOTIONAL SYMPTOMS

 

The Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization

 

Are We There Yet? How Long is Withdrawal Going to Take?

 

"Is it always going to be like this?"

 

The importance of recognizing you're feeling good

 

Creating a new self after withdrawal

 

What does healing from withdrawal syndrome feel like?

 

Withdrawal dialogues & encouragement

 

_______________________________________
UNUSUAL AND OVERPOWERING EMOTIONS
 
Neuro-emotion

 

Deep emotional pain and crying spells, spontaneous weeping


Shame, guilt, regret, and self-criticism

Coping with irritation, anger, and rage
 
Sudden fear, terror, panic, or anxiety from withdrawal

 

Ways to cope with daily anxiety
 
Rebuilding self-confidence, accepting anxiety

 

Dealing With Emotional Spirals

 

Withdrawal causing intrusive or repetitive thoughts, rumination, and increased panic?


Health anxiety, hypochondria, and obsession with symptoms

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder or OCD: Repetitive, intrusive thoughts, compulsive behaviors
 

For those who are feeling desperate or suicidal

 

__________________________________________________
MEDITATION AND MINDFULNESS
 
Easing your way into meditation for a stressed-out nervous system
 
Mindfulness and Acceptance
 
Good links for anxiety/worry

Inhabiting our bodies in meditation http://wp.me/p5nnb-aSX

Meditation can heal the brain which can heal the mind and body

Mindfulness, Meditation, and Prayer After Brain Injury

Pranayama Breathing for Anxiety and Depression
 

__________________________________________________
FORGIVING YOURSELF
 
Blaming yourself for mistakes? Try this.
 
Shame, guilt, and self-criticism
 
__________________________________________________
HELP YOURSELF BY HELPING OTHERS
 
The Magic of Helping Others

 

__________________________________________________
PSYCHOTHERAPEUTIC TECHNIQUES

Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) for anxiety, depression, or withdrawal symptoms

 

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) and Radical Acceptance

The Dr. Claire Weekes method of recovering from a sensitized nervous system

 

Relaxation exercises, guided meditations, calming videos, sleep hypnosis

 

"Change the channel" -- dealing with cognitive symptoms
 
Behavioral Activation Therapy: Getting out and doing things helps depression
 
"Forest bathing" reduces cortisol, aids mood, immune system
 
EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques)
 
Neuroplasticity and limbic retraining
 
Reframe stress to become more resilient

 

Art Therapy

 

Journaling / Journalling / Writing Therapy / Therapeutic Writing

 

Music for self-care: calms hyperalertness, anxiety, aids relaxation and sleep

 

Music Therapy / Music for Wellness and Healing

 


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

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

All postings © copyrighted.

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GiaK

a few simple yoga postures/techniques that can help with anxiety, restlessness and insomnia (I've found they help me)

 

I posted a brief yoga video that helps calm in general on the blog here:

 

NOT just for sleep!

 

http://beyondmeds.com/2011/08/23/yogarelax/

 

Another posture that really helps calm even iatrogenic terror is legs against the wall:

 

http://beyondmeds.com/2011/02/20/copingpain/legsagainstwall/ (PICTURE OF POSTURE)

 

and

 

http://beyondmeds.com/2011/02/20/copingpain/legwall/ (PICTURE OF POSTURE)

 

experiment with the distance from the wall...then lay there and mindfully breath into your belly...hands on chest and belly can be nice...it's really GREAT! and can reset the entire system, I've found.


Everything Matters: Beyond Meds 

https://beyondmeds.com/

withdrawn from a cocktail of 6 psychiatric drugs that included every class of psych drug.
 

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GiaK

oh...went back to bed and came up with another good one...also helpful for pain and/or anxiety/terror/restlessness (the above helps with all of that for me as well)

 

A good old fashioned epsom salt bath!

 

http://beyondmeds.com/2011/08/26/healingtool/


Everything Matters: Beyond Meds 

https://beyondmeds.com/

withdrawn from a cocktail of 6 psychiatric drugs that included every class of psych drug.
 

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alexjuice

Interesting about the poses. I need to try that.

 

One thing that I've found fool proof to relied my distress is to help another person with their distress. Unfortunately this doesn't work, for me anyway, over the Internet. But I feel a lot of relief when I talk to my friends or anybody really either by phone or in person and focus my mind away from my own situation. This is really big in AA. When the founder first started it he tried to get other drunks sober but they all, at first, went back to drinking. He complained to his wife that it wasn't working and he might give it up. She told him, "but you're not drinking Bill, this is the longest you've ever been sober."

 

Anyway, that's why I want to get a phone list together.

 

Alex


"Well my ship's been split to splinters and it's sinking fast
I'm drowning in the poison, got no future, got no past
But my heart is not weary, it's light and it's free
I've got nothing but affection for all those who sailed with me.

Everybody's moving, if they ain't already there
Everybody's got to move somewhere
Stick with me baby, stick with me anyhow
Things should start to get interesting right about now."

- Zimmerman

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Barbarannamated

To be needed is powerful. And very distracting in a good way, not that i wish problems on anyone.

 

I've printed up contact cards "I'll run for you" to do those errands that most people complain about day-to-day. When friends were having kids and couldn't get out as easily, for example. People are very hesitant to ask for help (myself included).

 

Phone list is a good idea, Alex. Especially if people find themselves in a health situation unexpectedly...getting stung by wasps and ending up in ER, for example.


Pristiq tapered over 8 months ending Spring 2011 after 18 years of polydrugging that began w/Zoloft for fatigue/general malaise (not mood). CURRENT: 1mg Klonopin qhs (SSRI bruxism), 75mg trazodone qhs, various hormonesLitigation for 11 years for Work-related injury, settled 2004. Involuntary medical retirement in 2001 (age 39). 2012 - brain MRI showing diffuse, chronic cerebrovascular damage/demyelination possibly vasculitis/cerebritis. Dx w/autoimmune polyendocrine failure.<p>2013 - Dx w/CNS Sjogren's Lupus (FANA antibodies first appeared in 1997 but missed by doc).

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gruvedaddy

Hello again all. :) I figured i'd add my two cents here and mention something that has worked for me. I have many times taken a hot bath while listening to relaxing "Spa" type music. I have an internet radio app on my smartphone called "Slacker Radio" (identical to Pandora) that has a station titled "Spa" which has nothing but relaxing music that makes the bath all the more enjoyable. It really helpes calm my mind while in the tub. I've even listened to it while driving home from work after a hard day to calm my mind. If you don't have a smartphone i'm betting that there are a plentiful amount of cd's available that will serve the same purpose. Oh, and since Slacker is an internet radio service it is easily accessed via any computer at slacker.com. You'll find "Spa" in the category of "Chill" stations. Give it a listen, it's FREE and very soothing. :)


25mg Zoloft (down from 150mg over 13 years), 1mg Ativan

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Catalyzt

Great topic and posts, not much to add, only a slightly different spin on what y'all already have observed:

 

Group therapy worked really well for me for PSSD (and the comparisons upthread to Bill W & AA are particularly well taken in this respect.) Attachment is the best way of regulating affect and restoring some kind of homeostasis to my brain-- whether the disregulation is chemical, environmental, pharmacological or some combination of the above.

 

What goes along with this, though, is developing an aggressive strategy for attacking shame and self-blame, and that's much harder. You can't get to group or call a friend if you can't get out of bed, or are too depressed to do anything because you think you did something wrong.

 

This is distorted thinking, and it's really seductive.

 

I am now deep into Healy's "Let Them Eat Prozac," and one thing he noted in a very small study with subjects who were not clinically depressed was that one side effect of SSRIs is that we start believing we are defective. Even scientists and medical professionals who knew, intellectually, that SSRIs might cause suicidal ideation or severe side effects that were not reported in the literature began believing that intrusive thoughts caused by the drugs-- or their withdrawal-- were somehow the result of some underlying psychological problem they had not recognized before. AND they were sometimes resistant to discontinuing the drugs, even though they knew, intellectually, that this was irrational.

 

This is why, on a bad day, you have to make yourself call friends, or get out to group or some kind of social activity even if you do not feel like it. It almost may not even matter exactly which group you choose. Pick one and go for it.

 

Again this is nothing that has not been said already, just a slightly different way of thinking about it that might be helpful.

 

--Cat

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keepingon

Hello there,

 

Read your story---and must say that some years ago i analyzed every thing and

then found out that at the end of the day analysing does not help to solve

any issues--It actually causes more issues. when ever I found self analysing

I would say out loud "Not you again" your analysis does not work.

I have learned not to analyse, but take things in my stride one day at a time.

Not saying you must do it....If you feel comfortable with it and whatever works

for you great. Just sharing

 

Keep on keeping on

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Nikki

Deepak Chopra

Question:

 

How can I admit that I am in pain, find the source of it, eliminate the source and finally deal with it? Please please please help.Thank you!

 

Response:

 

To heal emotional pain, you need to first name the pain, whether it is anger, fear, sadness, or jealousy, etc… Then allow yourself to feel where in your body that emotional pain is stored. Spend some time letting yourself fully describe everything you can about the physical sensation associated with the emotional pain. Notice whether it feels achy, throbbing, sharp, heavy, dark, swirly, hot, numbed, rigid, or whatever it is. Be with that feeling in the body, breathe long easy breaths into that area of sensation with the mental and emotional intention of acknowledging, releasing and healing the injury as well as the misunderstanding that led you to perceive the event the way you did. Be loving, compassionate and patient with yourself during this process and continue until there is a noticeable shift in the physical sensation to where it no longer dominates your attention. That will indicate that you have cleared a certain chunk or level of your stored pain, and that is probably enough for the time being. Next time repeat the process to access and release a deeper level. Each time you will be more freed up and more your real self. Eventually the entire pain and its repercussions will be cleared away.


Intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1902-nikki-hi-my-rundown-with-ads/

 

Paxil 1997-2004

Crossed over to Lexapro Paxil not available

at Pharmacies GSK halted deliveries

Lexapro 40mgs

Lexapro taper (2years)

Imipramine

Imipramine and Celexa

Now Nefazadone/Imipramine 50mgs. each

45mgs. Serzone  50mgs. Imipramine

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pdtrtr

Hi all,

The only thing that helped me so far is changing objects, habits, friends and environment gradually.  I think change faciliates formation of new connections and thus healing.  Throwing or donating stuff at home I don't need or bought for no good reason was little helpful.  Freeing myself from things, places or people that irritate me makes me feel less bad.   Changing habits or even buying new things instead of the ones I gave away could be helpful.    Otherwise the symptoms are cruel and tend to get worse by time for me regardless of how much time I work, exercise or what I eat.

Hope you get well soon. 

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Newbeginning

Some things that have helped me:

 

1-This book is awesome, written by a therapist who suffers chronic/recurrent depression. You can tell he has lived it and he helps you understand a lot of the underlying issues and start addressing them: http://www.amazon.com/Undoing-Depression-Therapy-Doesnt-Medication/dp/1455884898

 

Highly recommended. Can buy used on Amazon for $4.

 

2-Dialectic Behavioral Therapy (DBT): Initially created for people with Borderline Personality Disorder, it is now used as a set of skills that can be used by anyone who wants to regulate their emotions better. It mixes cognitive-behavioral and mindfulness-based therapies.

 

There is an awesome Yahoo! group where you learn the emotional regulation skills and do homework every week. Then you receive feedback from the moderators and read what other people share from their own homework. It's a cycle of several; weeks. Since these skills need a lot of practice, you can repeat the cycle as many times as you want.

 

It's all by e-mail. You can remain anonymous. Here's the link to apply to the group: https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/dbtclass/info

 

3-Fish oil:I hope I'm not being repetitive, as I have not finished reading the fish oil thread yet. The main thing with fish oil is 1) DHA/EPA concentration; and 2) taking a quality supplement.

 

I got no results from two brands of capsules. The only thing that worked for me is the liquid one. You have to take 1 tablespoon a day for 2 months before you notice an effect. This is the one I used, and the only one I found effective: http://www.iherb.com/Carlson-Labs-The-Very-Finest-Fish-Oil-Lemon-16-9-fl-oz-500-ml/2796

 

Make sure you buy it from someone who carries fresh inventory, keeps stock in climate-controlled storage and ships fast, because fish oil can oxidize quickly when exposed to heat or light. The amber colored bottle protects some, but it's not good to risk it. Iherb is a good company to buy from. Also, keep it in the fridge and buy one bottle at a time to minimize risk of oxidation.

 

It tastes ok (lemony) and can even be added to salads. Just make sure you eat it all :)

 

4-Mentoring: I found someone on the web that has had similar experiences with depression and we exchange e-mails often and check on each other. This is different than an online forum or support group in that you get a more on-on-one type of relationship with someone who is very much going through the process of recovery at the same time as you are. I didn't realize how helpful it would be. I found her at a depression suppoprt group and she's helped me through more than one crisis.

 

I'm blessed with a caring family and a couple of close friends, but sometimes you really need someone who has been exactly where you have been.

 

5-Gardening and pets: it's like meditation. You get engaged in an activity that brings you joy without any expectations of performance. It's an easy way to get immersed in the moment and have contact with nature. With pets there is also unconditional love and acceptance.

 

6-6-8 deep breaths several times a day, even when I'm not stressed help me be less stessed overall. It's hard to keep doing regularly, but even if you just do it sometimes, it helps. When you're faced with increased stress, it becomes more natural and easier to self-regulate your stress response with deep breathing and induce relaxation.

 

7-Have a regular "no cares" time when you literally allow yourself not to give a fu** about anything. Nothing.

 

8-For anxiety and rumination, the "worry time exercise" is helpful to decrease overall anxiety. Instructions: http://www.anxieties.com/102/self-help-practice-4-create-worry-time#.Uy6Y2oXLL2Q

 

You can do one 30 minute session instead of 2 10-minute ones. You can also write down your worries throughout the day, as long as you don't allow yourself to worry about them until worry time.

 

9-If you can exercise, even just go out for a walk, by all means do it. It helps the brain work better in every way.

 

10-Hope: it may sound strange, since hopelesness is such a core part of the problem we faced. Still, hope is a choice. It's a choice that increases the odds of better outcomes (this has been researched ad nauseum). And we lose nothing by leaving a little window open to hope.

 

Hope some of it helps!


  • SSRIs 3-4 times in the last 14 years; would take them for 6-8 months and then taper off under dr supervision with no problems.
  • Med history prior to 2015: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6012-newbeginning-my-withdrawal-story/?p=267313#entry267313
  • 04/2015: Prozac decreased to 15mg over last 3 months; effexor held steady at 8mg; current effexor XR: 20 beads of a 75mg capsule per day (about 8mg)
  • 06/2015: Prozac: 10mg; effexor XR: 19 beads (about 7.5mg); 07/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor 18 beads; 08/2015: Prozac: 7.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • End of August: withdrawal: depressive symptoms, crying spells. Realized I was measuring prozac dose wrong for the last 2 months. Reinstated Prozac 8.5mg; Kept effexor at 17 beads. Stabilized in 5 weeks.
  • 10/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • 11/2015: Prozac: 1.9ml (7.5mg); effexor: 16 beads
  • 12/2015: Prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: 16 beads. Withdrawal: neuroemotions
  • 01/2016: prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: reinstated 17 beads, withdrawal improved; 02/2016: Prozac 1.5ml; Effexor: 17 beads; 03/2016: Prozac 1.3ml(5mg); Effexor: 17 beads (7mg)-withdrawal (flu-like malaise, lightheaded, drowsy) started end of March. April 15: reinstated Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized. 2 weeks ok. End of April: Withdrawal (neuroemotions). Eventually stabilized in April-May. Apathy improved.
  • 3 month hold until August. August 2016: apathy came back;

  • October 2016: updosed to Prozac 1.6ml. Bad reaction: anxiety, depression. End of October: went down Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized over several weeks.

  • Dec 9: tried macca for energy: anxiety/depression. Improved over several weeks, but not completely resolved.

  • Dec 31: cut Effexor 5% to 16 beads. After 9 days: withdrawal anxiety, depression; tried updosing to 17 beads Feb 7 but anxiety got worse; went down to 16 beads

    May 2017: Anxiety improved; severe depression continues

  • September 2017: finally stabilized!!!!!! 09/07/2017-12/31/2017: hold

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milkandmarble

I'm not sure if this is the correct place for this (feel free to move it), but I wanted to share a tool that I've been using the last few weeks to help me manage my health and moods. It is a free application available for computers or phones, etc. that helps you track your symptoms, triggers, etc. in order to identify what is helping/ hurting. You can download it for free here:

http://www.findingoptimism.com

 

The other resource I have really found fascinating is a book I got from the library called Cracked: The Unhappy Truth about Psychiatry by James Davies. The 13th chapter (how to fix the cracks) was especially interesting for its take on the relationship between mental health and our society.

 

 


2001-2014  between 10-40mg Celexa, with 3 attempted tapers, 1 CT

2014-2015 added Wellbutrin 150-300 msg, started to taper Celexa

2014-2015 -continued to taper slowly to < 1 mg Celexa, BUT  increased alcohol use 

Jan 2016 - reinstated on 10 mg Celexa, 300 mg Wellbutrin, eliminated alcohol, increased exercise, psychotherapy, improved diet

June 2017 - August 2018 - reintroduced alcohol (2-3 drinks / week), maintaining exercise & diet regimen

Sept 2018 - went from 10 to 9 mg Celexa, holding 300 mg Wellbutrin

.... (monthly taper sept, Oct, Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb)

Feb 2019 - 3 mg Celexa, 300 mg Wellbutrin; Feb 28 - 2.75 mgs Celex, 300 mg Wellbutrin; March 25, 2019 2.5 mgs Celexa, 300 mg. Wellbutrin

(continued taper)

October 2019 -completed Celexa taper, started Wellbutrin taper - 200mg Wellbutrin (faster pace because of stimulating effects of Wellbutrin)

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moodyblues78

Whenever you see yourself in the mirror, smile. Do it every time for months no matter how sh*tty you feel. Even if you are crying your eyes out.

 

You'll surprised how much it changes the way you see yourself.


08 Cipralex 10mg for about 6 months. 11-12 Cipralex 20mg. Unsuccesful WD. 12-13 Zoloft 100mg with Diazepam 10-20mg as needed for anxiety.
Fall 13 Tapering Zoloft 100->50->25->12,5->0 in 2,5 months and CT Diazepam. 12/24/13 RI Zoloft 12,5mg
.

1/21/14 11mg

3/18/14 9,9mg

2/18/14 8mg

4/22/14 7,6mg

5/5/14 7,2mg

5/12/14 -> cutting 0,5mg per week, holding when necessary.

8/18/14 -> cutting 0,25mg per week holding when necessary.

10/20/2014 -> cutting 0,1mg per week, holding when necessary.
12/28/2014 Jump!

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westcoast

What a great tip, MP. (The timer). It addresses the feeling that sometimes keeps me from starting a chore: this will take forever and I will never finish. Having the timer means you do not have to finish...you just have to start.

 

I guess the same thing could work for people like me who cannot make themselves go for a walk. Just set your phone's timer to something ridiculous like 5 minutes, at which time you can turn around and go home if you want to. (Chances are you will not want to, though.)

 

One day at a time, anyway...I get my walking, such as it is, by parking in the far reach of parking lots and at least walking 20 yards twice :)


2009: Cancer hospital said I had adjustment disorder because I thought they were doing it wrong. Their headshrinker prescribed Effexor, and my life set on a new course. I didn't know what was ahead, like a passenger on Disneyland's Matterhorn, smiling and waving as it climbs...clink, clink, clink.

2010: Post surgical accidental Effexor discontinuation by nurses, masked by intravenous Dilaudid. (The car is balanced at the top of the track.) I get home, pop a Vicodin, and ...

Whooosh...down, down, down, down, down...goes the trajectory of my life, up goes my mood and tendency to think everything is a good idea.
2012: After the bipolar jig was up, now a walking bag of unrelated symptoms, I went crazy on Daytrana (the Ritalin skin patch by Noven), because ADHD was a perfect fit for a bag of unrelated symptoms. I was prescribed Effexor for the nervousness of it, and things got neurological. An EEG showed enough activity to warrant an epilepsy diagnosis rather than non-epileptic ("psychogenic") seizures.

:o 2013-2014: Quit everything and got worse. I probably went through DAWS: dopamine agonist withdrawal syndrome. I drank to not feel, but I felt a lot: dread, fear, regret, grief: an utter sense of total loss of everything worth breathing about, for almost two years.

I was not suicidal but I wanted to be dead, at least dead to the experience of my own brain and body.

2015: I  began to recover after adding virgin coconut oil and organic grass-fed fed butter to a cup of instant coffee in the morning.

I did it hoping for mental acuity and better memory. After ten days of that, I was much better, mood-wise. Approximately neutral.

And, I experienced drowsiness. I could sleep. Not exactly happy, I did 30 days on Wellbutrin, because it had done me no harm in the past. 

I don't have the DAWS mood or state of mind. It never feel like doing anything if it means standing up.

In fact, I don't especially like moving. I'm a brain with a beanbag body.   :unsure:

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Chemistry

How would you treat someone with very severe anxiety, ocd, depression, without medication? Like they've had it for most of their lives to the point where if they were to not be medicated they would likely self harm or something. What would you suggest as effective treatment to someone like that?

 

Just wondering thanks guys


2010 - citalopram 10mg 
2011 - 20-40mg, 1 month taper, PSSD & Anhedonia - Elavil 10mg during taper.
Clonazepam when needed after a month of daily use. 
2012 - Off Elavil - Zoloft (sertraline) 25mg - 50 mgs for 6 months + Buspar for a while. Pssd & anhedonia improved on zoloft, now has gotten a lot worse since a year off. 

 

Off all drugs since October 2012.

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JanCarol

ON DEALING WITH EMOTIONAL SYMPTOMS, a metaphor:


 


Gained while approaching the rugged cliffs on the Northern California coast.


 


You approach the cliff.  It is terrifying.  You can feel the dreadful pull into the raging surf.  You look at the boiling water hundreds of feet below.  Sheer cliffs, sheer terror.  There is no fence or guardrail - it is up to you to take care of yourself.


 


Do you succumb to the overpowering pull that would send you crashing down the cliff and shatter you on the rocks in the raging sea below?  (I see these hidden rocks as those surprises, those hidden traumas that lurk - you know they are there, and they call to you in a destructive way.)


 


No..


 


Do you flee in fear, running to safety far from the dramatic upheaval of the cliffs?  Hide from the fear, never to face it again?


 


No.


 


Instead, go as close to the fear as you can.  When it becomes too much, take one step back - just one - to feel safer.  Drop to your knees, ground, make sure of your safety.  YOU CAN DO THIS.  From your hands and knees, you can crawl closer to that chasm of panic.  You can control how close you get to the dread edge - the end of your very world.  Crawl.  One tiny step of hand, of knee - you may find that you can get very close to the edge of your fear.


 


Then, lie down.  Face your fear.  Look at it.  Look down the cliffs and be amazed.  The wonder, the awesome power of the raging surf, the flight of birds around the floating kelp.  The secret caverns that the surf explores, the rhythm of the ocean against the submerged rocks.  Get to know your cliff.  Become one with it - and yet - you are safe.  You can experience your emotions from a safe place.  The fear will not kill you - but what you do about it makes all the difference.


 


The fear may not subside, but you can control how much of it you take in, if you take time to step back, ground, and do what you need to be safe.  Sometimes that may mean not going out of the house.   Or maybe your cliff is driving the car.  Or seeing or talking to people.  Challenge that fear by finding a safe way - like a child - on your hands and knees - to explore that thing you fear.  Sit in the car without driving it.  Walk around the yard without going anywhere.  Make one phone call to someone safe, someone comfortable.


 


When you go back to the cliff the next time, you may not be as afraid of that abyss.  You may still be filled with horror at the thought of the cliff.  Maybe you cannot get any closer without stepping back, going to your hands and knees, to a place of safety, in order to explore your fear.  But - at least you know what lies beyond the cliff.  And you know that you have the power to control how close or how far away that cliff is.



"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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KarenB

Beautifully expressed :).  Sometimes I think about making the most of things while we're in this place - such as acquiring an enormous capacity to feel and understand emotions, especially emotions like fear, despair, hopelessness and grief.  I've found depths of myself I wouldn't have dreamed existed prior to all this.  I thought I'd scraped the barrel while coping with childhood sexual abuse and the resultant PTSD.  Turns out there was more...

 

Thanks for writing down your insights - that ocean cliff is a picture I'm going to keep with me. 

 

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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scot

Hello all,

some of the usual symptoms of withdrawal syndrome are de-personalization and brain frog.Fortunately I have nothing of them.

However,I have found some info that might be of interest to some of you.There are mostly non-drug treatments,so the harm of using them is very low I think.

 

Depersonalization:Its causes and potential solutions

http://selfhacked.com/2015/07/27/depersonalization-its-causes-and-potential-solutions/

 

Brain fog:The most common causes and effective treatments

http://selfhacked.com/2013/06/15/the-cause-of-brain-fog/

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KarenB

I've found that building up as many non-drug tools as possible is the key to managing issues that I had pre-drugs (and were the reasons I initially started SSRIs).

 

I think of it as weaving a held life.  That is, I find a new idea (such as those listed in this topic) that seems like it would suit me.  I write it down and stick it on my wall.  I start to use it in my life, start to build up the habit of it.  Then I go and find another idea, and build this into my life.  Kind of like a bird builds a nest, I'm weaving together a whole bunch of things that will support my healing, and management of my underlying issues (depression, anxiety etc). 

 

One thing by itself may not do much, but the strength from the interwoven parts is greatly comforting and supportive. 

 

Off the top of my head, my 'bits of straw and feathers' have been:  gentle yoga, meditation, counseling, journalling, eating whole foods, fish-oil & vit.E, deepening close friendships, hot baths with epsom salts, getting my hands in the garden, singing, reading here on S/A, resting when tired, having music ready to play in the night, having meals in the freezer, crying when I need to, learning to sit with my emotions, learning to ask my friends for help, drinking heaps of water.

 

And as a bonus, the feeling that comes from knowing I'm actively making healing happen in my life becomes another bit of straw which strengthens the nest. 

 

Hugs to everyone,

KarenB


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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bluebalu86

I find reading and researching about Dialectical Behavior Therapy to be very helpful. It was specifically designed to help emotional dysregulation which happens, but is not limited to, cases such as borderline personality disorder. It's very useful when it comes to dealing with strong and seemingly uncontrollable emotions. I recommend this resource: http://www.bipolarsjuk.se/pdf/Handbook%20in%20DBT%20Group.pdf 

There are many others but I don't feel well right now, I'll post them later. 


I suffer from depression, anxiety, pure-o ocd, and panic attacks since 2004. Been on multiple different psychiatric drugs since 2006. Never had a significant WD problem before, only brain zaps for a month and then I'd be fine...............Been on Cipralex (escitalopram) 15 mg and Fluanxol (flupentixol) 1 mg since Sep 2014. Stopped taking the Cipralex after a fast 20-day taper.Took the last 5 mg Cipralex on Feb 5th, 2015. Then took Seroxat (paroxetine) 10 mg for a week, and stopped it too. Severe WD started suddenly on Feb 16th. RI 5 mg Cipralex on Feb 18th, 2015. RI worked and was relatively stable for a while................April 7 - decreased Fluanxol from 1 mg to 0.5 mg and took it at this dose for a week. - BIG MISTAKE; April 13 - WD starts creeping in; April 14 - RI full dose of Fluanxol 1 mg => severe muscle twitching and jerking when trying to relax and fall asleep, overwhelming sense of doom, dread, terror, and horror, insomnia, hoping to stabilize.
Tried doing a 10% cut off Fluanxol in the end of May for a few days, but quickly updosed to full dose because the twitching returned.
Experiencing waves and windows in the following months.
Unsuccessful brief taper attempt of Fluanxol by 5% on November 1st. Symptoms hit the next day. Too scared to continue tapering, reinstate full dose.
Severe crash in November after stupidly trying a barbiturate on November 9th. Grave mistake. Sense of unshakable inescapable internal torture, like my soul is in hell being tortured, terror/horror/dread/doom (probably akathisia?) that gets especially bad when trying to relax and fall asleep, muscles twitch, jerk and move on their own, shaking, insomnia, can't eat, confusion, disorientation, brain not working normally. Never felt so bad in my entire life. Never experiment with other meds while in WD! Praying to God I stabilize and get back to my baseline.
December - things getting even worse.

January - unbearable suffering

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Happypuppy

I've found that building up as many non-drug tools as possible is the key to managing issues that I had pre-drugs (and were the reasons I initially started SSRIs).

 

I think of it as weaving a held life.  That is, I find a new idea (such as those listed in this topic) that seems like it would suit me.  I write it down and stick it on my wall.  I start to use it in my life, start to build up the habit of it.  Then I go and find another idea, and build this into my life.  Kind of like a bird builds a nest, I'm weaving together a whole bunch of things that will support my healing, and management of my underlying issues (depression, anxiety etc). 

 

One thing by itself may not do much, but the strength from the interwoven parts is greatly comforting and supportive. 

 

This exactly. Some of the things I have been forced to think about while tapering, has been what will I do when I'm off antidepressants?  Ok, so I will get down from time to time; it's part of my personality I guess.  What will I do to stop "down" from being "crash landed"?

 

Two things I am working on is exercise - just moving - and sunlight.  I am pretty lucky in Australia that for much of the year there is an abundance of light.  What I am doing differently now, though, is not hibernating indoors with the blinds drawn - even in the middle of summer.  I need at least 20 - 30 minutes of being outdoors per day.  I have been thinking about getting a light box for winter - my town can get pretty grim and dark in the winter.

 

Another good one for me is laughter - even hearing other people's contagious laughter will set me off.  Funny vids on Youtube are great.

 

Also, because deep down I am a bogan (redneck for Americans) when I crank something like "Thunderstruck" by AC/DC my knees start twitching, my feet start tapping, and maybe there's a little air guitar going on ... any music that gets my blood surging, makes me feel good.


- Sertraline 100mg from 2002 - 2007

- Tried Effexor XR in 2004, side effects were worse, went back to Zoloft.

- quit cold turkey a number of times due to side effects

- Generic Prozac from 2007 - 2011

- Pristiq in 2011 for two months, like Effexor XR I could not tolerate the medication

- Quit cold turkey, again experienced devastating rebound depression

- Back on Sertraline 50mg and then 100mg from late 2011 - current.

- Have scheduled a taper which will take a minimum of 2 years.

5/11/15 - dropped from 100mg to 50mg.  Memory issues, which subsided.  Feeling overly 'up', scared me. Cut back on coffee, seemed to get better.  

- 22/12/15 dropped to 45mg.

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Hopeinahpwr

KarenB,

I like your view on the interwoven parts and how they comfort you as a whole. I too am now utilizing Journaling, meditation, meetings, peer/family support, this great forum...basically anything that helps me to better myself and my thought processes. As a whole, it definitely has helped! To better days!


On zoloft since 2000 for OCD/anxiety. Tapered off from 150mg to 100, 50, 25 over Dec/Jan 2015. After month n half off, began depression. Being terrified, as I never had depression before, after a few days, went back to 50mg, then five days later to 100mg. Now stable. I will stop this medication, with time and perseverance...my current taper level and timing are as follows, which includes No other Rx's, No alcohol, NEVER any illicit drugs:

84mg from October 2016

82mg from February 2017

79mg from April 2017

77mg from June 2017

75mg from July 2017

"Yesterday is History, Tomorrow a Mystery, Today is a Gift." - Eleanor Roosevelt

"Forces beyond your control can take away everything you possess except one thing, your freedom to choose how you will respond to the situation." - Viktor Frankl

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sollicitudo

I have been spending a lot of time in the sun the last few days - it seems to me that this has helped my w/d symptoms. Does anyone else have the same experience?


Effexor 150mg July 2011 - March 2014

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Junglechicken

I walk every day for at least an hour, rain or shine.

 

Other areas of my healing have changed. I no longer take supplements and I do eat some junk food since my weight dropped back in March - this scared me as I thought I was ill.

 

I am in regular contact with a fellow WD sufferer which is a huge deal and of great comfort, and now that the Support group is gaining momentum will have monthly meetings to look forward to.

 

Also, I pray every day and do this on my walks.


Dose History: 19 Feb 2014 - Escitalopram 10mg daily June 2015 - Started taper, 5mg every other day July 2015 - 5mg every 2 days August 2015 - 5mg every 3 days September 2015 - 5mg every 4 days Sept 14th - Completed tapering, but at 7 weeks "drug free" I suffered serious WD symptoms as a consequence of "incorrect" tapering. Nov 25 2015 - Re-instated Cipralex @ 2.5mg daily. WD symptoms faded. Held at this dose and experienced "windows and waves". 12 Oct 2017 Reduced dose to 1.25mg. 13 Mar 2018 Reduced dose to 0.625mg (approx.). 16 April 2018 0mg. Windows and waves triggered by stress (IBS/reflux, headaches, sinus issues) Aug 2019 Mirena coil fitted 6 Jan 2020 MAJOR Wave hit 19 months following last dose (protracted WD).  Symptoms listed below Mar 2020 Mirena coil removal.

Therapy: Nov 15th 2016 Re-started therapy Jan 19th 2017 Started CBT Dec 2017 Started listening to Hypnotherapy CD (self-esteem). Nov 2019 Started couples therapy.

Supplements: "Bioglan" Biotic Balance Ultimate Flora 10 billion CFU, live Bacteria, Probiotic, suitable for Vegetarians, with Lactobacillus Acidophilus, Lactobacillus Rhamnosus, Bifidobacterium Longum"Pukka" Vitalise a unique blend of 30 energising botanicals.

Diet: 16 April 2018 Detox cleanse / anti-candida for 90 days. Jan 2020 Started "small plate" diet (i.e child size portions).

Exercise: Stretching, Yoga, Pilates, Spinning, Elliptical/upper body workout, walking.

Medical Test Results: 4 Jan 2017 Homeopathic Treatment starts 24 Feb 2017 Started weight loss program 24 Mar 2017 Naturopathic Treatment + anti-Candida diet started due to suspected Candida Related Complex (CRC). DETOXED for 7 weeks to "re-set" gut. April 2017 "Genova Diagnostics" Comprehensive Stool Analysis NEGATIVE; Full Blood Count (Normal) / Blood Cholesterol: 5.6 (Borderline) / Blood Sugar (Normal) / 28 Jun 2017 FSH 8.2 / 14 Nov 2017 FSH 17.7 Dec 2017 Blood Cholesterol: 3.9 (Normal) / Kidney Function (Normal) / Blood Sugar (Normal). December 2017 "Genova Diagnostics" Food panel allergy (bloodwork) analysis - a few "VERY LOW/VL" allergens; Mar 2018 "Genova Diagnostics" SIBO urine analysis: High Level of Yeast/fungal markers found in small intestine but NO SIBO.  April 2018 Thyroid (Normal) / Full Blood Count (Normal) / FSH (Normal). 16 April 2018 Started anti-Candida diet - 3 month protocol.   25 March 2020 All test results "Normal". CRP" 5 mg/L (normal range to 0-5 mg/L).

Symptoms:  Flu-like symptoms, anxiety, anhedonia, sinus headaches right-side (severe), IBS issues/reflux (severe)**, tinnitus, fatigue, inner tremor, nausea, chills/hot flushes, pounding heart, muscular issues including stiff left hip flexor, intense anger, PSSD (ongoing).  **Histhamine intolerance (suspected).

 

Major Life Events: 

Re-located to UK from Canada: Jan 2016

My father died: 5:05pm, Monday 5 Feb 2018 Last Lexapro dose: 16 April 2018 (its now been over a year since I quit ADs)

Moved house: Friday 23rd February 2018  "Divorced" toxic Mother: Monday 26 March 2018 Starting working again: 19 November 2018

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Uhu

ON DEALING WITH EMOTIONAL SYMPTOMS, a metaphor:

 

Gained while approaching the rugged cliffs on the Northern California coast.

 

You approach the cliff. It is terrifying. You can feel the dreadful pull into the raging surf. You look at the boiling water hundreds of feet below. Sheer cliffs, sheer terror. There is no fence or guardrail - it is up to you to take care of yourself.

 

Do you succumb to the overpowering pull that would send you crashing down the cliff and shatter you on the rocks in the raging sea below? (I see these hidden rocks as those surprises, those hidden traumas that lurk - you know they are there, and they call to you in a destructive way.)

 

No..

 

Do you flee in fear, running to safety far from the dramatic upheaval of the cliffs? Hide from the fear, never to face it again?

 

No.

 

Instead, go as close to the fear as you can. When it becomes too much, take one step back - just one - to feel safer. Drop to your knees, ground, make sure of your safety. YOU CAN DO THIS. From your hands and knees, you can crawl closer to that chasm of panic. You can control how close you get to the dread edge - the end of your very world. Crawl. One tiny step of hand, of knee - you may find that you can get very close to the edge of your fear.

 

Then, lie down. Face your fear. Look at it. Look down the cliffs and be amazed. The wonder, the awesome power of the raging surf, the flight of birds around the floating kelp. The secret caverns that the surf explores, the rhythm of the ocean against the submerged rocks. Get to know your cliff. Become one with it - and yet - you are safe. You can experience your emotions from a safe place. The fear will not kill you - but what you do about it makes all the difference.

 

The fear may not subside, but you can control how much of it you take in, if you take time to step back, ground, and do what you need to be safe. Sometimes that may mean not going out of the house. Or maybe your cliff is driving the car. Or seeing or talking to people. Challenge that fear by finding a safe way - like a child - on your hands and knees - to explore that thing you fear. Sit in the car without driving it. Walk around the yard without going anywhere. Make one phone call to someone safe, someone comfortable.

 

When you go back to the cliff the next time, you may not be as afraid of that abyss. You may still be filled with horror at the thought of the cliff. Maybe you cannot get any closer without stepping back, going to your hands and knees, to a place of safety, in order to explore your fear. But - at least you know what lies beyond the cliff. And you know that you have the power to control how close or how far away that cliff is.

Edited by JanCarol
made font legible

2007-2014: Clonazepam (started at 0.5mg, I think, and then sat at .25mg for several years before weaning myself off); 
2007-2015: Sertraline (100mg; tapered off very quickly in Jan. / Feb. 2015);
2015: withdrawal for most of the year, beginning with the sertraline taper (apathy, brain fog, brain zaps, depression);
January- April 2016: Felt great; these were some of the happiest months of my life;
April/May 2016: Began to feel anxious again; felt myself unraveling / losing my resolve. Continued to unravel to the point where I could barely function (very dense brain fog & severe anxiety). Was so desperate that I reluctantly agreed to try Wellbutrin.
Oct. 2016: started taking Wellbutrin 100 mg SR; Nov. 2016: went up to 150 mg SR;
Jan. 2017: back down to 100 mg SR; then back up to 150 mg a few days later due to severe withdrawal symptoms;
May/June 2017: began a slow taper; August 2017: down to 75 mg (switched to IR for easier tapering);
Jan. 2018: 18.75 mg. Withdrawal again (dizziness, weak, disoriented, depressed, more anxious than usual) after I tried to speed up the taper;
Feb. 2018: up to ~25/30 mg. I've been tapering steadily (and very cautiously) since then; right now I'm back at around 18.75mg.  

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Uhu

Thanks for this! And sorry for quoting not once, but twice...! -- something went wrong with my internet connection. This is a beautiful metaphor, and I will cherish it!


2007-2014: Clonazepam (started at 0.5mg, I think, and then sat at .25mg for several years before weaning myself off); 
2007-2015: Sertraline (100mg; tapered off very quickly in Jan. / Feb. 2015);
2015: withdrawal for most of the year, beginning with the sertraline taper (apathy, brain fog, brain zaps, depression);
January- April 2016: Felt great; these were some of the happiest months of my life;
April/May 2016: Began to feel anxious again; felt myself unraveling / losing my resolve. Continued to unravel to the point where I could barely function (very dense brain fog & severe anxiety). Was so desperate that I reluctantly agreed to try Wellbutrin.
Oct. 2016: started taking Wellbutrin 100 mg SR; Nov. 2016: went up to 150 mg SR;
Jan. 2017: back down to 100 mg SR; then back up to 150 mg a few days later due to severe withdrawal symptoms;
May/June 2017: began a slow taper; August 2017: down to 75 mg (switched to IR for easier tapering);
Jan. 2018: 18.75 mg. Withdrawal again (dizziness, weak, disoriented, depressed, more anxious than usual) after I tried to speed up the taper;
Feb. 2018: up to ~25/30 mg. I've been tapering steadily (and very cautiously) since then; right now I'm back at around 18.75mg.  

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JanCarol

You're welcome!  I'm sure the natives were laughing at me crawling around the northern California coastal cliffs on my hands and knees, stretching my neck like a cat.....   :P


"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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danny

I've been struggling with motivation lately and I was recently given a model for a daily planner that has really been helping me and I just want to share it in hopes that maybe someone will find this helpful too. I think my problem may have been that I am looking at recovering my old self as this huge ginormous endeavor that was in no way possible to ever complete. This planner has helped me keep things small into little 24 hour chunks and it has made life a lot easier for me and makes recovering myself seem less scary.  I was given the model for this from a really good friend and I hope it will help you too as it is helping me. Hopefully the file attached and you can read it clearly and print it out.

 

You can decide to make your own following this model or you can just print out mine. I used Microsoft Word to make mine. The Do quadrant is just for listing daily tasks that need to be accomplished for that day and just scratch them off one by one as you go. The 2nd quadrant "Focus" is for listing future goals and how in the now you are helping yourself get closer to achieving them. So just jot down some tasks that you will accomplish for that day that will help you get closer to achieving your big super awesome future goals. The 3rd quadrant is "Work" that quadrant personally I need because I am self employed and it helps me keep the jobs I need to finish for work for that day clear and listed out like I said you can make your own and make these quadrants whatever the heck you want. The model is whats most important. The 4th quadrant I titled mentality and it just helps me keep focus on the mind sets I want to internalize for that day. For example there are mind states that I found really easy to live from before the antidepressants that are a little harder to do now, but I still want to live from. Like focusing on love for myself and others, not getting discouraged that I'm not where I would like to be yet, staying positive, being kind to myself and etc. This quadrant is like a reminder to you about awesome qualities/mind states you may have had in the past before the crappy drugs that you want to cultivate and live from in the now. I printed out like a zillion of these and I mark them with pen in the upper left corner with the date for that day and write in my tasks for that day and then scratch off what I accomplish one by one as I go it is a super fulfilling feeling when you scratch off everything you meant to accomplish for that day. I apologize for my punctuation and I know I could have done a better job of explaining all of this, but I am in a hurry I just really wanted to share this I hope this will help someone else too. 

post-4436-0-06694800-1474413329_thumb.jpg


Month and a half taper off of Paxil 25 MG cr in 2011 excruciating withdrawal symptoms

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Rose9975

Hi Danny, thank you for sharing. I find I can function on one hand very competent capable solution focused person when I have such clarify some up with really creative ideas...so much energy...mentally and physically but mostly I am tired and have brain fog when I have to remind myself to brush my teeth. My memory deteriorates and it psibs my head to thibk.I find the simple task of just dressing my bed makes me feel independent of my feelings....I think the list would be good once I don'the make my goals too aspirational as I have a tendency to be an 'all or nothing' thinking.I like visual aids I internalise the information more readily. Thank you again light & love xx


I've started taking antidepressants in 2001. I took Cipramil for 3 years. Elflexor for 1 year. Lexapro 10mg - 20mg since 1992 approximately.

 

STARTING DOSE 20mg Lexapro 2016

 

19mg Lexapro (3rd January 2016)-Taper 5%

18mg Lexapro (8th February 2O16)-Taper 5%

17mg Lexapro (? March 2016) - Taper 5% -

16mg (16th May 2016) Taper 5 %

17mg (21st August 2016) + 5%

16mg (3rd January 2017) - 5%

15mg (4th February 2017) -5

14mg (6/02/18) -5%

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Cicci

I guess we all had different journeys and reasons for starting taking AD in the first place.
It took me a looong time to find out that I wasn't getting better by feeling sorry for myself - even if I think you are entitled to do so sometimes, just not all the time.
 
It helped me a lot to figure out what I really like to do and what makes me feel good - and then DO it, enjoy it and think of how good it makes me feel.
These are some of the things I enjoy most:

  • Cuddling with my cats
  • Spending some time out in the beautiful nature
  • Doing pottery (this is pure mindfulness to me!)

 

I also recommend trying out some of the hypnotherapy session by Thomas Hall - there's a LOT of them for free here: https://www.youtube.com/user/sable4e
I'm going to try out the "Motivation for Excercise" session next... ^_^


1988 - 2016 Different sorts antidepressants from Anafranile to Voxra. A couple of attempts to quit, but relapsed (?).

10/7 -16 From 225 mg Venlafaxin to 200 mg - No problems

31/7 -16 From 200 mg Venlafaxin to 175 mg - Minor panic attacks now and then

1/10 -16 Switched straight off from 175 mg Venlafaxin to 150 g Voxra on doctor's ordination (due to difficulties to cope with working as little as 25%)

-Bad withdrawal symptoms; dizzieness, nausea, insomnia, nighmares, heart pounding, panic attacks, malaise

4/10 -16 Continued with 150 mg Voxra and added 150 mg of Venlafaxine

5/10 -16 Removed Voxra on advice from SA, went back to 175 mg of Venlafaxine and will continue slowly tapering it out.

 

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JanCarol

From my thread   http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/5234-%E2%98%BC-jancarol-reboxetine-first-then-lithium/page-25?p=251626#entry251626:

 

Three of my current favorite non-drug techniques for mood adjustment (I have gazillions, but these are the ones I enjoy the most right now):

 

1.  The bucket of epsom salts or magnesium chloride.  The weather is hotter now, and having that nice cool bucket to plunge my feet into is really grounding.  I only need to sit or stand there for 5 minutes, but sometimes stay as long as 10.  Instant attitude adjustment!

 

2.  My very favourite one right now:  

  1. put in hearing aids
  2. go for a drive in the car
  3. turn on the music
  4. put on some vanilla lip balm (or pomegranate or)
  5. eat 3 cinnamon Altoids
  6. start doing gentle, long, deep slow breathing, and
  7. listen.  really listen to the music.

All senses engaged.  I'm in awe of this process - the hearing aids really lift the music, and my brain is more receptive to the pleasure of beauty in sound, and then the music itself is often quite uplifting, too.  Car stereo is nice, and I understand how to turn it on and "make it play" (unlike the "muso" studio equipment around the house!)

 

3.  Zip it up - Uddiyana bandha.  I've had yoga teachers who called it each of these things.  One yoga teacher told me, in pose, to zip up my core, like running a zipper from bottom to top.  Others have called it "naval to spine."  My current teacher calls it by its proper Sanskrit name, "Uddiyana bandha."  

 

Here's what I'm finding about #3:  I do it at least once while walking.  I do it often at my desk.  I sometimes do it while driving the car, or while I'm out, I just remember:  zip it up.  I find that I feel 2" taller, my posture corrects, and my heart is more free to open, my lower back is supported, and sometimes, even my neck and head feel better.  This is an improvement in self esteem, and it seems to work in moments, once you understand how it works, and can engage it confidently.  (I keep trying to get hubby to do it, and he just looks at me like I'm crazy, and he's not about to try something like that - it might be uncomfortable.  Never mind that it would help his back problem....)

 

Plus, core strength and breathing:  good for the Adrenal-cortical orchestra:  http://www.theatlant...chestra/496679/

Scientifically improves stress response!

 

So there you go:  3 novel non-drug techniques today


"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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JanCarol

Another one, from:  http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/5234-%E2%98%BC-jancarol-reboxetine-first-then-lithium/page-25?p=252207#entry252207

 

 

Thymus thumping - or drumming!

 

You know when Tarzan used to yodel and pound his fists into his chest as a show of wild manliness?  Well I learned this in kundalini yoga, long ago.

 

The French word for heart, coeur, is the basis for our English word Courage.

 

The heart is not about love, it's about bravery.  Courage.  The fires burning in your heart that make living worthwhile.

 

Behind your breastbone, next to your heart is the thymus gland.  It is a sort of master gland, like the pituitary, but it runs immune function.

 

Try this:

 

Tap with your right fingertips, 3 times, firmly but gently on your breastbone in the middle of your chest.  Say as you tap - "I can do this!"  (I like "I" = tap, "CAN" = tap, "DO" = tap, then hold the fingers there for "THIS.")  Repeat with your left hand.

 

If you really want to fire it up, you can try it Tarzan style (but not if you've been having cortisol spikes, works better for fatigue related conditions).

 

I CAN DO THIS - or 

 

AAAAAYyyyyyyyyyy  - eeeeeeeeeIIIIIIIIIIIEeeeeEEEEEEEEE - AAAAAaaauuuuyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!  (the chanting would also activate your vagus nerve while you activate your thymus gland, tapping your breastbone like Tarzan, alternating knuckles.  Obviously, this is more intense!)


"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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JanCarol

I like your Day Planner, Danny!

 

I used to do a similar thing with coloured stars.  You know, the ones we used to get on our papers in kindergarten if we did a "Good Job!" it would be a gold star.

 

So I made up a code:

 

Blue star = in bed before midnight

Red star = up before 10 am

Green star = ate fruit & veg

Silver star = Exercised at least 20 minutes (that was back when I was more fit!)

Gold star = worked today.

 

So I would put the stars on my calendar at days end, and watch my calendar fill up with "Good Job!" stars!  It was rewarding, and sometimes when I was frustrated - maybe I didn't get to work that day (I was also self-employed) - at least I ate fruit & veg, or exercised.  I found that I could get at least one star a day, and often 3.  

 

The expectation was not to get all 5, but to do my best, and once the calendar started to fill up, it was motivation to try harder!


"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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RachelE

I find reading and researching about Dialectical Behavior Therapy to be very helpful. It was specifically designed to help emotional dysregulation which happens, but is not limited to, cases such as borderline personality disorder. It's very useful when it comes to dealing with strong and seemingly uncontrollable emotions. I recommend this resource: http://www.bipolarsjuk.se/pdf/Handbook%20in%20DBT%20Group.pdf 

There are many others but I don't feel well right now, I'll post them later.

It's good that you found a site that helps you.  As for me, I find it therapeutic to refuse to believe in the bipolar label my shrink stigmatized me with. Willed lack of insight has done wonders for my self esteem!


I have been on so many medications since I was 20 and diagnosed as "mentally ill" that I have lost count.

Right now, however I have been taking:

Lamictal 25 mg: I went on it in March for only 13 days, then cold turkeyed off when I thought I was developing a rash because of it. Pretended to go back on it, but didn't. Not the best idea, but I had no way to reduce the dose. Anyhow I had no adverse withdrawal reactions, probably because I was on it for less than 2 weeks.

Abilify 20 mg:  I have been on this for several years. Actually at least half the time I have spent as a meds "consumer" I have been on this nasty pill. I finished tapering off it at the beginning of 2016. Was reinstated during the 4 days I spent in a psych ward in March. Tapered off it again in 10 weeks, from say March 15-June 30. Needless to say this is not exact, but I remember I was off it before July 4 (patriotic holiday in America!) I am doing fine, although I know I may have to wait till Christmas or later to know I am out of the danger zone for withdrawal psychosis. The main thing I notice about being off is that I no longer crave sweets all the time and am losing weight without trying. Good thing since I used to weigh 350 lbs.!

Effexor 150 mg: This is the real trouble-maker. Since I have no other way of tapering I do the best I can by bead counting. I unscrew the gel capsule and count out the tiny micro-capsules or beads inside. This works fairly well with the generic time release version. Only 120 beads to count of almost identical size. Lately I have been "holding" at 20 bead removal due to some major stress in my life. Moving hundreds of miles from my old home and a bout of strep throat that wouldn't respond to antibiotics.  I guess that means I'm on 120 mg of Effexor right now. On October 16 I am going to recommence my taper since I am safely moved and no longer have strep! 

I admit now that I did something stupid. I had trouble opening the extra strength gel capsules containing the beads so I reinstated at the original dose for a week. I know it's not good to play ping pong with my brain, but I could never open the capsules without spilling those microscopic balls all over so I was never sure what dosage I was taking! Thank the LORD that I finally have the old kind again and can safely count out the amount. I am now back on 135 mg and feel somewhat better.

October 30, 2016. I am down to 120 mg effexor. November 27, 2016. Down to 105 mg effexor. December 25, 2016. 90 mg effexor. January 15, 2017. 75 mg effexor. January 21. 82.5 mg effexor. January 23, 90 mg again. Feb. 14, 81.25 mg. Mar. 15, 72.5 mg. Mar. 27, 65 mg.  Apr. 9, 58.75 mg. Apr. 24, 52.5 mg.

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Gridley

Legs up against the wall yoga pose works great for me with withdrawal anxiety.  I'm a different person when I get up.


Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Began taper using Brassmonkey slide Jan. 2017.   

End 2017 year 1 of taper at 9.25mg 

End 2018 year 2 of taper at 4.1mg

End 2019 year 3 of taper at 1.0mg  

Current from Sept.23, 2020 at 0.05mg

Taper is 99.75% complete.

 

Lorazepam 1 mg 1986-1991 CT, resumed a few months later. CT 2000.  1 mg 2011-2016.  Sept, 2016 increased to 0.5 X 3 in split dose. Sept. 2019 increased to 0.625 X 3 after crossover to new brand

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan. 2016 began every 3-weeks 10% taper, down to 15mg.  Aug 2016, discovered SA, updosed to 25mg and holding.  Taper is 66% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotic, melatonin .33mg


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

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JanCarol

Non Drug Technique for the day:

 

Light a candle.  Make it the only light in the whole room.  

 

Watch it dance.  

 

Hold it in your hands and feel its warmth. 

 

Smell the wick and the wax.

 

Breathe, and share oxygen with it.  

 

Sometimes, you can even hear it (I have wood-wick candles that crackle like a campfire).

 

There.  All senses engaged.

 

Distraction, mindfulness, changing the channel.  Just by lighting a candle.

 

"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna

 

Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.

 

My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.

 

A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.


The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/

 

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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