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☼ Hi everyone… CallaLily here...


CallaLily

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Hi everyone… Cayperz here...

 

I was referred here by a lovely chap from the Mad In America website. Very glad to finally find like minded souls.

 

I've been flying solo in my thinking re: getting off my meds for years and have only just recently "came out" to my friends about my intentions to taper off. Most are supportive and those that aren't, haven't been included in the finer details. 

 

I'm doing this alone (please no lectures about p-doc support! It's just not going to happen that way for me) but I do have the support of my psychologist.

 

I get pretty scared (in moments) because I don't want to injure my brain or end up back in hospital. I have promised myself to take this very slowly. I had broken sleep last week but am back to normal this week and I have foggy brain moments every now and then but apart from that, nothing major to note. Some mild paranoia that began even before my tapering but I know how to deal with it. Reassuring self talk and listening to the paranoia rather than running from the thoughts actually really helps. Listening to my inner voice and respecting it, even if I don't necessarily agree with it.

 

It feels really good to know I'm not alone. I might not be on heaps of meds and I might be only "3 years in", however, I've wanted to get off them since the very moment I was told "You'll need to be on these for the rest of your life".

 

Right.

 

So, here I am. Thanks for reading and look fwd to posting/viewing more in the future,

Cayperz

(Australia)

Off Lithium (1000mg) since December 2016

Off Lamictal (50mg)since June 2016

Off Abilify (5/10mg) since 2015

 

It's diagnonsense! 

So, I threw it to the wind and kept walking...

And I will never go back.

 

 

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Welcome Cayperz,

 

You have found the right support group. I have read and participated in several over the years, and this is the most compassionate and knowledgeable group I have found.

 

As for "going it alone" I suspect many of us are doing just that, as our doctors either tell us to taper too quickly or they tell us we need the drugs. As long as they keep prescribing, we can control our own tapers. It may get a little more complicated when you get down to very small doses, but there are plenty of ways around that as well.

 

Just be careful about not cutting too much, too fast, and read the links on the forum's home page. It outlines basic advice and protocols w/o being too dogmatic. The most important piece is don't cut more than 10% of your current dose at one time and give yourself to stabilize.

 

You sound like you have a good perspective and determination. You will do this!!

 

Grace

amitriptyline from 1980-2002, along wi/ intermittent, infrequent use of benzos over 2 decades

2002-2010 Klonopin 1-2 mg., ambien 10--20, mg, remeron 4 mg. and  trileptal 300 mg

2011 Stopped ambien and crossed over to valium 17.5 mg. (updosing 2.5 mg. to cover ambien C/T ) tapered valium w/ long holds to 12.74 mg.

2015-present  tapered from 300 mg. trileptal to 108 mg.;  12.74 valium,  4 mg. remeron

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Cayperz and welcome to SA,

 

It's good that you have found this site.  The members are very supportive and encouraging and there is a wealth of information here.  The best way to search the site is to use a search engine and type in survivingantidepressants.org + topic.  And yes, many of the members here are doing it on their own.  That's one of the reasons why being a member here is so worthwhile.

 

I hope I don't overwhelm you with all the links I'm listing, but I thought I'd point you in the right direction so you can start reading and can then ask questions:

 

Introduction to AD Withdrawal Syndrome

Why taper by 10% of my dosage?


Taking multiple psych drugs? Which drug to taper first?

 

Tips for tapering off aripiprazole (Abilify)

Tips for tapering off Lamictal (lamotrigine)

Tips for tapering off lithium

 

It's good to hear that you have a supportive psychologist.  These topics might give you some helpful tips:

 

What should I expect from my doctor about withdrawal symptoms?


How do you talk to a doctor about tapering and withdrawal?

 

And these helped me to understand why SA recommends slow tapering:

 

Brain Remodelling (Rhi's Description of Brain Healing)


Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery

 

You can use your Intro/Update topic to ask questions about your own situation and as a journal of your progress.  It is a good idea to update your signature each time you make a change so your drug history remains current and can be seen at a glance.

 

Before you change anything I suggest you post back here what you are planning to do so that the staff can give you their opinion about it.

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

My full tapering program     My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)    My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.  I do not provide tapering advice via PM.  Please post questions in your Introduction topic.  Please do not tag me for any reason.  I am an unpaid volunteer and assist members if I am able to and when I have the time.  Thank you for your understanding.

Mid Nov 2021 changed to low carb diet due to diabetes & cholesterol.  Lost 1/16 body weight, BP has reduced a lot. 

Links to my exercises and weights.  I also do 3 x 5.5 min with HIIT on exercise bike with 20 secs/min as fast as I can cycle.

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Thanks for your replies and all the links! :) Much appreciated :) 

 

Again, SO glad to have found this place! I'm not alone - YAY! :)

 

I've tapered my Lithium down by 15% - just a wee bit above the recommended 10% - it's easier that way as my pills split evenly in two.

 

Monday, 18th April 2016 was my first day of taper - have had interrupted sleep but no sleepless nights - I'll wake up, look at the clock and then go back to sleep. This only lasted about 4 days. I was very moody over the weekend but that was in combination with my period/hormones. I've felt a little foggy in my head but it's Autumn here in Aus so not sure whether that's do with allergies or similar... I think there's a combo affect happening for me at the moment. Apart from those "symptoms", I'm doing okay.

 

I'll definitely update my signature to better reflect my changes as I go along.

 

Happy Thursday!

Cayperz

 

Off Lithium (1000mg) since December 2016

Off Lamictal (50mg)since June 2016

Off Abilify (5/10mg) since 2015

 

It's diagnonsense! 

So, I threw it to the wind and kept walking...

And I will never go back.

 

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Cayperz and welcome to SA.

 

I'm glad you found us. I'm impressed with your initiative to come off meds and also your knowledge of doing so slowly. 

 

That is what's so wonderful about SA: many of us are "on our own" in real life with doctors, etc, but here, we are so supported. 

 

Welcome. :) 

Current: 2019: 0.04 mg Paxil!! This is real. Soon, after taking Paxil my entire adult life, I will be free.

Long story short: After 18 years on Paxil, "tapered" almost completely off over a month, at doctor's advice in July 2015.

Self-care includes magnesium, reasonable exercise, mindfulness, this forum and nutrition/eating enough food.

Also on 100 mg Zoloft unfortunately!! (which I now will have the knowledge to taper properly)

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Longer version: On Paxil since 1996--anxiety & depression caused by (undiagnosed) under-eating / eating disorder.

Doctor kept increasing dose, up to 60 mg; it never really helped but said it really was the best "med" for me.

Rapid doctor-led "taper" July 2015, down to 5 mg, with Zoloft as a "cross-taper" = Essentially a cold turkey. 

Severe withdrawal but didn't know it; believed it was my "underlying condition," and kept tapering, 5mg to 4 to 3  to 2 to 1.  

Feb 2016: Found SA! As of June 2016, tapering from 1mg at rate of 5-10% per month, Brassmonkey Slide! 

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Thanks Sky Blue :) nice to meet you :)

 

I have to amend my previous post about my percentage taper. I'm actually tapering at 12.5% - NOT 15%. Maths was never really my strongest point but after much thought, I generally "get there" hahaha.

 

It's one of those situations where I want to come off so badly that my patience runs quite thin. I just have to remind myself that there is NO rush and that slow and steady wins the "race".

Off Lithium (1000mg) since December 2016

Off Lamictal (50mg)since June 2016

Off Abilify (5/10mg) since 2015

 

It's diagnonsense! 

So, I threw it to the wind and kept walking...

And I will never go back.

 

 

Link to comment

I'm 99.9% certain that the reason why I experienced mania and psychosis was due to instant withdrawal from marijuana.

 

I have been "clean" for over 3 months and am now tapering Lithium by 12.5%.

 

Just taking my time - into week 2 and so far, so good... not too many symptoms (if any) a little broken sleep here and there and also some fogginess/headache. Nothing major.

 

Someone mentioned that dealing with the original cause of the mania/psychosis was key in assisting with a positive withdraw. I'm also seeing a psych which is assisting with the additional causes for my breakdowns (family issues/childhood traumas). I hope this is enough!

 

What's the best process for the lowest dosage before fully coming off the drug? I'm nowhere near that yet but what have you experienced?

 

Cayperz

Off Lithium (1000mg) since December 2016

Off Lamictal (50mg)since June 2016

Off Abilify (5/10mg) since 2015

 

It's diagnonsense! 

So, I threw it to the wind and kept walking...

And I will never go back.

 

 

Link to comment
  • Administrator

Welcome to the forum from another mis-diagnosed bipolar type 1. I see you're familiar with Mad in America, so you know how common it is to be misdiagnosed with bipolar.

 

The good news is you can get off these drugs and heal, especially since you're getting really good advice on your taper. Best of luck to you. 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Cayperz, welcome from me too. You should read the topic on tapering lithium and how to get the correct dose. It can be made into a liquid to make tapering easier, CC left the link for you.  As you taper the cuts will get smaller and it will be easier with liquid. 

 

We have a topic on when to jump off. Some jump off at 1mg, others keep on reducing until a dose can't be reduced any more.  I would recommend to keep reducing as long as it is possible by using liquid so it can be diluted. This is based on my own experience and not a rule! 

 

Here is the topic.... http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/11051-when-to-end-the-taper-and-jump-to-zero/

**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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Thanks everyone :)

 

I'm concerned about asking for a liquid Lithium from my GP (I no longer see the p-doc - absolute shonk). Any tips on what I can say and to not sound defensive! haha

 

Isn't it terrible that I feel I have to pander to a doctor about my own choices… :(

 

Cayperz

Off Lithium (1000mg) since December 2016

Off Lamictal (50mg)since June 2016

Off Abilify (5/10mg) since 2015

 

It's diagnonsense! 

So, I threw it to the wind and kept walking...

And I will never go back.

 

 

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Cayperz,

 

Did you read this links about doctors in my previous post?

 MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    13 November 2021 -  0mg Pristiq      

Woohoo!!!  Finally off Pristiq   

ADs since ~1992:  25+ years - 1 unknown, Prozac (muscle weakness), Zoloft; citalopram (pooped out) CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks a few months after); Pristiq:  50mg 2012, 100mg beg 2013 (Serotonin Toxicity)  Tapering from Oct 2015 - 13 Nov 2021   LAST DOSE 0.0025mg

My full tapering program     My Intro (goes to my tapering graph)    My website

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions.  I do not provide tapering advice via PM.  Please post questions in your Introduction topic.  Please do not tag me for any reason.  I am an unpaid volunteer and assist members if I am able to and when I have the time.  Thank you for your understanding.

Mid Nov 2021 changed to low carb diet due to diabetes & cholesterol.  Lost 1/16 body weight, BP has reduced a lot. 

Links to my exercises and weights.  I also do 3 x 5.5 min with HIIT on exercise bike with 20 secs/min as fast as I can cycle.

Link to comment
  • Administrator

You could tell him that you'd like to reduce your meds, but not mention that you want to come off completely. And maybe say you think the safest way to do this would be very, very slowly with a liquid.

 

And then give him a list of ways you plan on dealing with your symptoms such as mindfulness, CBT, exercise, nutrition, etc.

 

You can get some ideas here:

 

 Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms

 

Just stay as calm and matter-of-fact as you can. 

 

ChessieCat listed these links, but I'll place them here again for you. I know, you've got a lot to read! But it's all good stuff. You're going to be fine.

 

 

What should I expect from my doctor about withdrawal symptoms?


How do you talk to a doctor about tapering and withdrawal?

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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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Thanks everyone! I really appreciate your support/links and will definitely read them tonight when I get home from work.

 

Still getting to know the site and how it works! haha - I've made inroads today, tho! ;)

 

Hope you're all having a wonderful day,

Cayperz

Off Lithium (1000mg) since December 2016

Off Lamictal (50mg)since June 2016

Off Abilify (5/10mg) since 2015

 

It's diagnonsense! 

So, I threw it to the wind and kept walking...

And I will never go back.

 

 

Link to comment
  • 2 weeks later...

Thursday, 12th May 2016

 

Almost a month in and I'm down to 750mg (from 1000mg Lithium).

 

How do I feel?

 

I feel absolutely fine. I have ups and downs (which is human), I'm laughing and enjoying work. Last night I had the best sleep I've had in YEARS and even though I woke up at 4am (went back to sleep at around 4.30am) I woke at 6am feeling well rested and ready to face the day. Sleep has rarely been a problem for me but waking up and still feeling so tired has become "the norm".

 

One of my colleagues commented today that there is a "light in my eyes", which is really nice to hear.

 

I reduced to 750mg on the 7th May 2016 and promised myself that I would "hold" until 7th June 2016. 

 

I'm enjoying chocolate a little too much but oh well! ;)

 

Also, I'm single and have no family contact - whilst this has pressures in and of itself, it's nice to come home at the end of the day and just be with myself and not have to "behave" or "be nice" to anyone. No cats or dogs etc... just me. And my phone/internet if I get lonely hahaha!

 

I take my hat off to anyone who is doing this with significant others and families. If there's one thing I am now ever grateful for is that I'm single. I cherish my alone time - whereas before? I used to pine for a boyfriend and admonish myself for not having one... now? I couldn't be more glad that I don't! haha - oh, life! ;)

 

Thanks for reading...

Off Lithium (1000mg) since December 2016

Off Lamictal (50mg)since June 2016

Off Abilify (5/10mg) since 2015

 

It's diagnonsense! 

So, I threw it to the wind and kept walking...

And I will never go back.

 

 

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  • Administrator

That's a really beautiful post, Cayperz. 

 

 

One of my colleagues commented today that there is a "light in my eyes", which is really nice to hear.

 

No better compliment than that! You're doing awesome.  :)

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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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Thanks Shep :)

 

The last few days have been a bit intense but I'm managing it all just fine. 

 

Sleeping well is my biggest cue and I'm really doing well in that department haha

 

Hope you're having a good weekend!

Cayperz

Off Lithium (1000mg) since December 2016

Off Lamictal (50mg)since June 2016

Off Abilify (5/10mg) since 2015

 

It's diagnonsense! 

So, I threw it to the wind and kept walking...

And I will never go back.

 

 

Link to comment

Teeth clenching anger today.

 

I've had to contact a certain family member to give them closure as they've been asking one of my best friends about my well being. 

 

I'm nearly 40 years old. I don't need to be molly coddled any more!

 

I just want out of the clutches completely... :(

Off Lithium (1000mg) since December 2016

Off Lamictal (50mg)since June 2016

Off Abilify (5/10mg) since 2015

 

It's diagnonsense! 

So, I threw it to the wind and kept walking...

And I will never go back.

 

 

Link to comment
  • 4 weeks later...

Having a day off work today.

Just couldn't face the day and certain people at work. Today would've been a tough situation to traverse so, it's better that I stayed in bed.

I'm doing really well in spite of hiding at home! Getting lots of good sleeps and feeling fairly "normal". I had a minor anxiety attack the other week which I walked/talked myself through and I'm really proud of myself that I permitted myself to have a really HUGE cry about everything. So much stuff has happened this year. I've had to expel so many toxins from my life - some of those toxins are people. Anyways… it's been huge. But I have a wonderful kindred soul group that I'm proud to be apart of. They have been amazing for me (as always) and I wouldn't have been able to do this or get this far without them.

Anyhoo… thought I'd quickly update before jumping under the covers again.

xx Cayperz

Off Lithium (1000mg) since December 2016

Off Lamictal (50mg)since June 2016

Off Abilify (5/10mg) since 2015

 

It's diagnonsense! 

So, I threw it to the wind and kept walking...

And I will never go back.

 

 

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Cayperz, thanks for the update. I'm pleased that you are still sleeping, that is a huge help. Well done for limiting the toxic people in your life, if they don't make you feel good  you don't need them. Of course there are times when people are down or upset and you feel sad for them, but the ones who constantly leave you feeling drained and bad after seeing them are not good for us. How is the taper going? 

**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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  • Altostrata changed the title to Hi everyone… CallaLily here...
  • Administrator

Cayperz is now CallaLily.

 

See her Success Story here CallaLily: Liberty, at long last...

 

As is our custom, I will close this topic. Please post your congratulations in CallaLily's Success Story topic.

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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