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gardenlady

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gardenlady

I'm not able to communicate with a psychiatrist.  Their offices tell me that they have a six month waiting period for an appointment and I can't get to them ahead of time to ask if they are knowledgeable about cross tapering.  It's impossible to talk to a psychiatrist before making an appointment and that's a prolonged process.  

 

 

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Benzhelp

Hi Gardenlady, 

 

Hope you find solutions to your Tapering issues. Take good care <3 Love and Healing to you <3

 

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gardenlady

Thanks, but unfortunately, I'm not finding solutions to my tapering issues.  I can't find a doctor who can help me and the mods here just keep referring me back to my doctor.  So, I'm at a dead-end.  

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composter

Hey there, I love to garden myself. Hope you've been able to find time with plants lately. Sorry to hear about your ongoing difficulties. 

 

Have you checked the Mad in America directory to find psychiatrists or other resources in your area who can help you out?

 

https://www.madinamerica.com/provider-directory/

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gardenlady
10 minutes ago, composter said:

Hey there, I love to garden myself. Hope you've been able to find time with plants lately. Sorry to hear about your ongoing difficulties. 

 

Have you checked the Mad in America directory to find psychiatrists or other resources in your area who can help you out?

 

https://www.madinamerica.com/provider-directory/

Thanks, composter, for your reply.  There are no psychiatrists in my area who can help, according to this directory.  

 

The "garden" in my name refers to my former street name, not gardening.  Unfortunately, I've never been interested in horticulture. 

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Songbird
3 hours ago, gardenlady said:

The "garden" in my name refers to my former street name, not gardening.  Unfortunately, I've never been interested in horticulture. 

 

Oh - I was imagining you in your garden surrounded by flowers!

 

I have a few questions - are you taking your duloxetine only once per day?  Is it an extended release or delayed release formula? 

 

It would be helpful if you could keep daily notes about your symptoms and post them here.  Here's an example (note this is a made up example):

 

23 June

7 a.m. woke up, anxiety 3/10

8 a.m. ate breakfast, took 20mg Prozac tablet

10 a.m. anxiety 7/10, nausea 3/10

12 p.m. ate lunch, anxiety 5/10, nausea 1/10

2 p.m. anxiety 4/10, nausea 2/10

6 p.m. ate dinner, took magnesium tablet 200mg, anxiety 2/10, no nausea

8 p.m. anxiety 1/10

11 p.m. went to bed, anxiety 2/10, difficulty falling asleep for 2 hours

4 a.m. woke up, no anxiety, went back to sleep for 3 hours

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gardenlady

All duloxetine (Cymbalta) is delayed release. 

 

Here are notes from yesterday which is typical of each day.  There is no variation of symptoms throughout the day.

 

December 2

9:30 am - Woke up and took Synthroid.  Extremely anxious and depressed.  Involuntary pursed lip breathing. Terrible thoughts of damnation & eternal separation from God. Crying.  Resumed sleep, off and on.

1:15 pm - Woke up and took duloxetine & Calcium/magnesium/zinc & vitamin D.  Horrible dread and doom; same thoughts of hell and damnation. Crying. Involuntary pursed lip breathing.

2:30 pm - Got up and had a small meal.  Took fish oil.  Dread, doom and damnation.  Life is ruined. Involuntary pursed lip breathing.

7 pm - Ate dinner.  Involuntary pursed lip breathing all day. Same dread and doom and hopelessness. Crying.

11 pm - Took calcium/magnesium/zinc, estradiol & progesterone (hormone replacement therapy).  Dread, doom, damnation & hopelessness. Involuntary pursed lip breathing. Crying.

1:30 am - Still awake.  Involuntary pursed lip breathing. Same dread, damnation, doom and hopelessness

 

I usually don't fall asleep till between 4 am and 8 am.   I sleep only in 2 - 3 hr intervals usually between 8 am and 3 pm.  Total sleep is about 5 - 6 hrs with much of that time spent lying in bed awake and in deep depression and terror.  The involuntary pursed lip breathing is present 24/7 except when sleeping.  It resumes the minute I wake up. 

 

The dread, doom, depression, suicidal thoughts, eternal damnation are the same throughout the day all day every day.  There is no deviation from this state and therefore no changing "daily pattern of symptoms."   

 

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Dejavu

Gardenlady, with regard to the Mad In America list of providers, there are none in my city either, but I did find one in my state (Texas) whose website states he does phone or skype sessions. I plan to contact him tomorrow. Perhaps that is something that would be an option for you. Prayers and healing energy headed your way from Texas.

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gardenlady

Dejavu, I'm glad you've had more success than I in possibly finding an AD taper-savvy doctor.  There apparently isn't one anywhere near me.  Thank you for your kind thoughts and sentiments.  I send healing wishes to you!

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Songbird
3 hours ago, gardenlady said:

Here are notes from yesterday which is typical of each day.  There is no variation of symptoms throughout the day.

 

Thanks for posting the notes.  I guess unchanging symptoms throughout the day is still a pattern of sorts.

 

It looks like you successfully tapered Cymbalta from 60mg all the way down to 24mg.  Have your symptoms been the same throughout the whole taper, or did they get worse at some point?  Or just gradually worse with each drop?  Sorry if you've answered about this before, I'm just trying to get a feel for the big picture.  I'm just wondering why you feel you are not able to continue with your Cymbalta taper and need to do a switch?

 

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gardenlady

Well, I’m non-functional, can’t relate to others so I’m isolated.  I have feelings of doom, death, damnation, everlasting hell, suicidal thoughts, hopelessness & despair.  Isn’t that enough to warrant consideration of a bridge?

 

It gets worse the lower in dosage I go.  If I hold, the death feelings all come back when I make the next tiny cut.

 

Doctors are clueless when it comes to tapering, so isn’t that why we’re all here?  Because we can’t get help from a doctor?

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powerback
1 hour ago, gardenlady said:

Well, I’m non-functional, can’t relate to others so I’m isolated.  I have feelings of doom, death, damnation, everlasting hell, suicidal thoughts, hopelessness & despair.  Isn’t that enough to warrant consideration of a bridge?

 

It gets worse the lower in dosage I go.  If I hold, the death feelings all come back when I make the next tiny cut.

 

Doctors are clueless when it comes to tapering, so isn’t that why we’re all here?  Because we can’t get help from a doctor?

Hi Garden lm in a similar situation with a bridge ,im very close to trying it out of survival and desperation .

Today is one of them days of all consuming burning hell for me .I see you live alone ,going through this torture and being alone can be a good thing ,from my perspective anyway because of my irritation and the politics of living with others ,I hide my torture well but every now and then I want to scream out of frustration ,I cant because I have to think of others .

Next week I have found a house to stay in for 5 weeks and I'm hopeful some peace can help me with the bridge  .

2 years at this and the last 6 months it got far worse so I need to give up the ghost and take a very dodgy gamble .

Take care and be well ,your far from alone in this torture .

🙏.

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gardenlady

PB, Reading between the lines, it sounds as if you have a husband and/or children but are taking a break from them for 5 weeks and going to live alone.  Is that correct?  Count your blessings if you do have a family....I don't and have gone though life alone and that's something NO one should have to do.  It's no way to live, especially at my age of 66.  The cumulative effect of a lifetime of solitude and loneliness does something to the brain and that's without psych drugs.  Add them into the equation and it's a nightmare too awful to describe.  Actually, when I was in my late 30s, I was sad because I was still single and a doctor put me on an AD because of that.  What an idiotic reason to prescribe a mind-altering, brain-injuring drug. 

 

I'm sorry to be so negative, but these drugs have made me unrecognizable even to myself.  The bitterness and hatred I feel for myself, my life and others is shameful. I keep hoping that perhaps I'll turn around as I get lower in dose, but the opposite happens.  No amount of non-drug coping techniques, positive self-talk or affirmations have any effect at all.  I'm in a downward spiral that terrifies me.

 

I'm sorry that you're in the same boat as I am.  Please accept my sympathy.  

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Songbird
15 hours ago, gardenlady said:

Well, I’m non-functional, can’t relate to others so I’m isolated.  I have feelings of doom, death, damnation, everlasting hell, suicidal thoughts, hopelessness & despair.  Isn’t that enough to warrant consideration of a bridge?

 

It gets worse the lower in dosage I go.  If I hold, the death feelings all come back when I make the next tiny cut.

 

 

Have you been making tiny cut?  From your signature they look more than 10%.

Did the symptoms go away when you held?  How long have you held for? 

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Leo1983

Hi

 

Hope your feeling better.

 

Here is my benzo history:

May 2014-Tapered off of 2 mgs K via 6 wk fast taper

Protracted acute withdrawal for 7 months. 
10 month window
Protracted withdrawal reappeared as PTSD with akathisia after personal trauma in March 2016. 
 
You say protracted withdrawal 7 months then a 10 month window.... then withdrawal reappeared as PTSD and Akathisia after trauma. 
 
Is this likely to be withdrawal returning or a new episode of illness due to the trauma? 
 
Its juat i have not heard of this before. Can WD return after 10 month of feeling well. 
 
Good luck 
 
Leo

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gardenlady
9 hours ago, Songbird said:

 

Have you been making tiny cut?  From your signature they look more than 10%.

Did the symptoms go away when you held?  How long have you held for? 

No, I am definitely not cutting more than 10% per month.  I was cutting 2.5% every 7 to 10 days and now cannot even do that.   I held once for a year and still had symptoms.  Even if I hold for months, I don't stabilize (the symptoms get somewhat less but don't go away) and then when I make even a 1% cut I'm back to square one with suicidal thoughts and doom/dread/depression symptoms.  The drug is making me sick and tapering it is worse.  I'm in an impossible situation. 

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Songbird

It's definitely a difficult situation.  It looks like there may be some information missing from your signature - did you do dose drops in June, August, and November?  I also can't see where you've tried a long hold since finishing your benzo taper.  It's also possible that some of your symptoms may be benzo-withdrawal related.

 

We usually suggest tapering the drug you're currently on, but it sounds like you feel that bridging to Prozac is the best option for you.  It is somewhat of a gamble - we've seen it work for some people and not for others.  On the previous page Alto provided a lot of information about bridging methods if you decide to try it.

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gardenlady
5 hours ago, Songbird said:

  It looks like there may be some information missing from your signature - did you do dose drops in June, August, and November? 

I've done micro drops weekly since May 2018 holding for a week or two at intervals in keeping with Brassmonkey's recommended Slide taper method.  I just don't record each drop as there are too many, so I record my dose at the end of every few months to give an overall status and pace. 

 

I've read throughly all of the info that Alto provided as well as all the links.

 

I don't know what the best option for me is, only that my current situation tapering Cymbalta is untenable.   

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Songbird
6 hours ago, gardenlady said:

I've done micro drops weekly since May 2018 holding for a week or two at intervals in keeping with Brassmonkey's recommended Slide taper method.  I just don't record each drop as there are too many, so I record my dose at the end of every few months to give an overall status and pace. 

 

Okay, that makes sense - thanks for including that info in your signature.

 

 

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gardenlady

Is there a moderator who can help me know what to do?   I am out of luck with doctors as I am unable to find an AD-tapering-wise one, so I need help from this site on knowing if I should bridge to Prozac and, if so, how to do it.

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Songbird

We can't tell you what to do, we can only provide the best information we have so that you can make an informed decision.  One option is to do a good long hold to give your system a chance to settle after all the changes, then recommence your taper much more slowly.  A bridge is another option - Alto posted information on how to do it (on the previous page) - but as we've said, we can't predict how well it will work.

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Keri

Garden lady, did you make the jump?  Did it work?

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Keri

I am at 9mg of cymbalta and considering adding in 5mg of Prozac while I taper the rest.  I’ve been on cymbalta 15yrs.  I’m miserable with the tapering.  

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gardenlady

I'm too terrified to bridge to Prozac as I live alone and am afraid that cutting the Cymbalta even after being on the Prozac will cause me to become psychotic and suicidal.  I get such horrific symptoms even after only a small Cymbalta cut that I'm scared the Prozac won't be enough to blunt the Cymbalta withdrawal symptoms.  I'm damned if I do and damned if I don't.  It's an impossible situation. 

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Gridley

Have you considered holding where you are on the Cymbalta for a few months to see how you feel?  I know you wrote that you don't stabilize but that your symptoms do get better.  

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Altostrata

There's no shame in holding for a while until you feel more confident.

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gardenlady

I'm having to switch from Teva generic Cymbalta to Citron generic Cymbalta because Teva is becoming nearly impossible to get in my area. I've already filled my new prescription of Citron and am giving up trying to get Teva any longer as it is so difficult.

 

I'm very clear that the bead sizes are different as well as the number of beads. However, I've found the weights differ, also. How do I know how much of the Citron brand to take when the bead sizes, counts and weights are all different from Teva brand which I've been taking? How do I make the switch?

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gardenlady

I was able to get more Teva brand duloxetine so am still cutting and now down to 80 beads/15 mg.  My symptoms are all mental except for insomnia and weird sleeping pattern.  I am merely existing and have no life.  Going outside, being with other people and gentle exercise don't help at all.  I can't imagine how I'll continue this for another 3 years or so.  My taper is at a glacial pace and it's agony.  My personality has completely disintegrated and is unrecognizable to the point I have lost all friends and am completely alone.  At age 66, that's scary.  Is there anyone else out there like this?  How do you do it? 

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gardenlady

Is anyone out there or is this site dead?  No one responded to my question in December, either.  What's the point of posting if no one responds?  

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powerback
6 hours ago, gardenlady said:

Is anyone out there or is this site dead?  No one responded to my question in December, either.  What's the point of posting if no one responds?  

Hi gardenlady ,this post touched my heart,I empathise deeply ,its ridiculous suffering that's for sure ,im often saying to myself its just ridiculous beyond belief to feel like this while staring at the ceiling.

Its nothing personal if theres no response to your thread ,please remember that.

I can relate to alot you've posted lately.

Take care and be safe .

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gardenlady

powerback, thank you for your kind response.   I see that you bridged from Effexor to Prozac.  Was it successful?  I'm thinking of doing that as I'm now down from 60 mg of Cymbalta to 15 mg.  As I don't get responses from the mods, I am hoping you might be able to advise me.  I'm concerned that I'll end up with withdrawal from 2 drugs and that I might be in a worse situation although it's impossible to know.  

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Gridley
Posted (edited)

 

13 minutes ago, gardenlady said:

bridged from Effexor to Prozac.

 

gardenlady,

 

I'm sorry you're feeling so bad.


Here is information on the Prozac bridge you are considering.  We generally do not recommend it for the reasons you mentioned.  It often doesn't work, requires a doctor well-versed in implementing it, and as you said, you run the risk of further destabilizing your nervous system.  

 

The Prozac switch or "bridging" with Prozac

 

My recommendation would be that you continue tapering Cymbalta.  Given the unpleasantness of your symptoms, you might want to consider tapering even more slowly than you are.
You may  want to switch to a micro-taper going forward. This is the gentlest way to come off these drugs. 

 

 

Edited by Gridley

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Altostrata
On 3/29/2019 at 1:40 PM, gardenlady said:

I was able to get more Teva brand duloxetine so am still cutting and now down to 80 beads/15 mg.  My symptoms are all mental except for insomnia and weird sleeping pattern.  I am merely existing and have no life.  Going outside, being with other people and gentle exercise don't help at all.  I can't imagine how I'll continue this for another 3 years or so.  My taper is at a glacial pace and it's agony.  My personality has completely disintegrated and is unrecognizable to the point I have lost all friends and am completely alone.  At age 66, that's scary.  Is there anyone else out there like this?  How do you do it? 

 

gardenlady, are you still facing having to switch brands? If you need to do that, you might get a digital scale to weigh contents of capsules from each brand to figure out an equivalency in bead-counting.

 

If you feel you cannot handle a digital scale, a pharmacist may be so kind as to weigh your 80 Teva beads and the contents of Citron capsules so you can work out an equivalency in beads.

 

Or, from a compounding pharmacist, you could get 5mg capsules compounded of the Citron generic brand for one month with a prescription written as "take 5mg capsule 3 times a day." That would give you 90 5mg capsules for 30 days.

 

You could take a 5mg Citron capsule and make up the rest with the Teva beads to do a gradual changeover to Citron. After a bit, take 2 5mg Citron capsules plus Teva beads, then 3 Citron capsules for 15mg. Figuring equivalency by trial and error might be a little bumpy, but doable.

 

If you're having trouble sleeping during your taper, please hold on your taper and let your sleep recover. This probably is affecting you quite a bit. This will give you some time to figure out how to switch from one generic to another.

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manymoretodays
Posted (edited)

Hi gardenlady,

I'm so sorry you felt overlooked.  I did take some time and go on back in your introduction.

And it looks like the Prozac bridge was addressed some time ago,  last August,  starting around here:  August 14 2018 post 

It might be helpful to take a look back at that discussion.

 

On 3/29/2019 at 2:40 PM, gardenlady said:

I was able to get more Teva brand duloxetine so am still cutting and now down to 80 beads/15 mg.  My symptoms are all mental except for insomnia and weird sleeping pattern.  I am merely existing and have no life.  Going outside, being with other people and gentle exercise don't help at all.  I can't imagine how I'll continue this for another 3 years or so.  My taper is at a glacial pace and it's agony.  My personality has completely disintegrated and is unrecognizable to the point I have lost all friends and am completely alone.  At age 66, that's scary.  Is there anyone else out there like this?  How do you do it? 

And that's great on getting more of the brand that you have been on.

 

Jan 11, 2018-Completed Valium taper.  Did extremely slow daily liquid micro taper

May 2018 - Began weekly micro taper per Brassmonkey's Slide method.  Interval dose progress is: 40 mg Cymbalta; July 2018-35 mg; Sep 2018-29 mg; Dec 2018-21 mg; Mar 2019-15 mg

 

You may be at that more critical dosage point now.......I don't know for sure off hand.  You could go back and look at the charts and graphs here though to see:

SERT transporter occupancy studies

 

I'm with Gridley.  Perhaps slow your taper or even just do a longer HOLD period.  And during the HOLD period try some new non-drug coping that you have not yet tried.  Especially something to break up the isolation/aloneness.  Oh my gosh.......that can do such a number on us.......the isolation.  There must be some comfortable place for you to go to make some new acquaintances or friends.  I'm only 61 and was considering dropping by senior centers, not so long ago.  I figured maybe I could help out at one or something.  I've found many options though for friendships again now though.  Doing things I'm interested in.  That's a good way I find to meet people.  And then my family ties.......although many are out of state........just renewing the old bonds and stuff has helped me anyway.

 

And okay.  Looks like Alto has replied as well.  See, we ARE here.  It does get slow sometimes, as far as weekend responses go.  And we always have lot's of newbies coming on board too.  But......you are NOT alone.  Okay?

 

Your old personality or better personhood will resume.  And oh......so many of us go through it.........those times when we just ARE NOT ourselves with this whole WD fiasco.  I know YOU are in there.  And how tough it is sometimes.

 

Love, peace, healing, and growth,

mmt

 

Edited by manymoretodays

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gardenlady

I'm able now to get the Teva brand, at least until the next time they have inventory problems.  I guess I'll keep on with the Cymbalta taper vs trying to bridge to Prozac.  I'm already doing a micro taper and going very slowly.....even at this pace I still have 3 or more years of tapering to go, so don't see how slowing down even further is feasible.  

 

I'm in such a funk with no life....I need to be around people, but can't be as I can't relate to people anymore due to the personality disintegration, so voluteer work isn't an option.  I don't see how I can do this much longer.....all I do is eat, sleep and watch TV.   I have no purpose or meaning in life.  No family or friends and no one to connect with.   These drugs have gutted my soul and I can't do things normal people do anymore.  It's impossible to experience pleasure in anything....going outside depresses me as does everything else.  I can't connect with God and desperately need to.  I have no one to talk to and no encouragement or support outside of this group.  I'm so frightened and afraid I'll die and go to hell so I'm afraid to live and afraid to die.   The spiritual agony and alienation from God is the worst.  

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powerback
10 hours ago, gardenlady said:

powerback, thank you for your kind response.   I see that you bridged from Effexor to Prozac.  Was it successful?  I'm thinking of doing that as I'm now down from 60 mg of Cymbalta to 15 mg.  As I don't get responses from the mods, I am hoping you might be able to advise me.  I'm concerned that I'll end up with withdrawal from 2 drugs and that I might be in a worse situation although it's impossible to know.  

My Bridge was out of desperation GL ,the mods will guide you but exhaust the research on it first .I cant claim one way or the other as of now  but I'm definitely far from well. with the advantage of hindsight looking back on the last 8 months [very bad],I mite of been pushing myself into waves with doing to much [building projects ,2 weeks ago I set myself back again ].I am not a member respectfully   to be taking advice from in regards to  tapers and recovery  . 

your concern is valid so thread very carefully .

Take care.

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