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Purplerain: introducing myself - tapering off Effexor 37.5mg


Purplerain

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Purplerain

Hi all,

 

Thank you for letting me join this wonderful fountain of knowledge. I have been on Effexor since late 2008, when I was 20 years old. My first long term relationship had just  ended and I was understandably an emotional mess. I was also alcoholic at the time and using a lot of recreational drugs, which didn't stop the doctor from providing me 75mg of Effexor XR. I loved it at first because I literally felt high. I had tried other antidepressants in the past but none had worked, whereas with Effexor I just seemed to have so much energy.

 

Fast forward to 2011, I am in residential rehab for my alcohol and drug addiction problem. The counsellors there suggest it might be a good time to try coming off my meds- 300mg Effexor and I also taking 25mg Seroquel at this point, as I was unable to sleep on the Effexor. I am referred to a completely incompetent psychiatrist who gives me a taper programme which takes me from 300mg to nothing in a month.

 

Not knowing any better, I complied with his insane schedule. Within a few weeks I was kicked out of rehab for out of character, rageful behaviour. Back home, I slowly lost my mind. Couldn't leave the house without feeling like I had a target sign painted on me- I felt everyone was looking at me and talking about me. I lost my temper at the drop of a hat over minuscule things. No one around me realised what was happening.

 

My memory of this time is hazy, but I do remember being home alone one night and suddenly becoming obsessed that there was a government conspiracy to give people heart attacks by putting too much salt in food. I was walking around the kitchen in circles screaming, unable to stop. I considered the possibility of hanging myself to make it stop. Luckily I called my boyfriend instead and found another website which is no longer active, who advised me to go straight to a doctor and resume the Effexor at a maintenance dose.

 

I did this and was put back on 75mg. The damage was already done and I fell into clinical depression. A month later I decided I couldn't be more miserable that I was and relapsed on alcohol. Luckily I got straight back into a 12 step programme and have been sober since that relapse. But I struggled with the after effects of that withdrawal for many months.

 

i have been absolutely petrified to try coming off Effexor again since, despite many side effects including palpitations, mental confusion, dry mouth, bad breath, constant clenched jaw and every type of stomach complaint. I fell pregnant in 2014 and came down to a quarter of a 37.5mg tablet during pregnancy. I wanted to come off it entirely, but my relationship was very unstable and I was being constantly triggered (we have now split up).

 

I was devastated to not be able to breastfeed my daughter, but I felt the Effexor presented too much of a risk to do so. I went back up to 37.5mg shortly after her birth. She is fine and healthy today, but the responsibilities of single motherhood have left me terrified to attempt withdrawal again. However, since giving birth I have found that the Effexor now has a sedative effect on me. I now have to take it at night time, or I am almost passing out during the day.

 

Sometimes I forget (I'm insanely forgetful now, which fairly sure is a side effect of long term antidepressant use) and then I have a choice of spending the whole day "shocking" or being a half passed out zombie fighting to keep my eyes open. I realised I can't carry on my life like this, I want and need my energy back. I've become completely reliant on coffee to have any kind of energy, so I'm always up or crashing back down.

 

My daughter needs me to be fully present in her life, which I don't feel like I am a lot of the time due to this horrid side effect. I found this website and have been reading up on safe tapering, and on June 14th began the 10% reduction method. At the moment it looks like it's going to take about 3 years in total. I'm in no rush after my last withdrawal experience, I can't risk ending up in such a bad way as I'm all my little girl has.

 

I have been dissolving the 37.5mg tablet in 75ml water, making sure it's all evenly dispersed, then removing 7.5ml (equal to 3.75mg) with an oral syringe. In the UK they no longer prescribe the slow release Effexor so as I can't do the bead method, this is the only accurate way I can really do it. Yesterday I had tingling in both hands all day then at night I had some brain zaps when I was trying to sleep which went all down my left side, which has made me wonder if I should maybe hold this dose for longer that a month. If anyone could advise me on this, I would appreciate it.

 

I find my daily meditation practice my most valuable asset in keeping me sane so I'm hoping it will aid me in my withdrawal.  If you have made it this far in my mammoth post, you are truly amazing! Love and healing light to you all x L

Edited by KarenB
added white space

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Purplerain: Introducing myself - tapering off Effexor 37.5mg
  • Moderator Emeritus

Dear Purplerain - welcome to SA,

 

Thanks for sharing your story with us - such a lot you have been through.  It's good you've already done some reading around the site.  I'm tapering off effexor too, but I have a lot further to go than you.  I'm now at about 100mg.  I've found that as long as I make small reductions my life stays fairly normal, and symptoms are minimal. 

 

I definitely think you could hold your dose longer than a month (which is only a guide).  The important thing is to pay attention to your body and symptoms and let them guide you.  Once I held for 8 months, and that made a huge difference to my symptom levels.  I reduce by about 4% monthly. 

 

Do you take Fish oil and Magnesium?  Many people find them useful in w/d. 
Melt into your own life

 

Please put your withdrawal history in your signature – all drugs/dates/dosages etc. so we can see your situation easily whenever you post, and help you more accurately.  Thanks.

 

Have a read of those and then you can come back to this thread to discuss things further.  This can be your journal to record your tapering and healing progress, and to ask questions.  

 

Welcome to SA,

Karen

 

Edited by KarenB
added white space cause it keeps disappearing!

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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Purplerain

Hi Karen, lovely to meet you. Thank you so much for reading my story and for your reply, I'm glad your withdrawal is going smoothly as the 4% reductions are working for you. I will definitely purchase some magnesium and omega tablets asap and thank you for that melt into your life link that has some really useful resources on it going to listen to those tonight :) 

x L

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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Purplerain,

Hi, I am on Effexor, too.

300mg to zero in one month?  I shudder to think of it - That guy was so ignorant.  Where do they find these dipsticks?

 

You say, "In the UK they no longer prescribe the slow release Effexor so as I can't do the bead method, "

My medication has always been slow release and still is, so I would check that out if you need to.

Beads-a-plenty here!

 

What a tough time you have had, with a daughter arriving, too.

 

All my best wishes,

Peng.

 

 

Born 1945. 

1999 - First Effexor/Venlafaxine

2016 Withdrawal research. Effexor.  13Jul - 212.5mg;  6Aug - 200.0mg;  24Aug - 187.5mg;  13Sep - 175.0mg;  3Oct - 162.5mg;  26Oct - 150mg 

2017  9Jan - 150.00mg;  23Mar - 137.50mg;  24Apr - 125.00mg;  31May - 112.50mg holding;  3Sep - 100.00mg;  20Sep - 93.75mg;  20Oct - 87.5mg;  12Nov - 81.25mg;  13 Dec - 75.00mg

2018  18Jan - 69.1mg; 16Feb - 62.5mg; 16March - 57.5mg (-8%); 22Apr - 56.3mg(-2%); CRASHED - Updose 29May - 62.5mg; Updose - 1Jul - 75.0mg. Updose - 2Aug - 87.5mg. Updose - 27Aug - 100.0mg. Updose - 11Oct 112.5mg. Updose - 6Nov 125.00mg

2019 Updoses 19 Jan - 150.0mg. 1April - 162.5mg. 24 April - Feeling better - doing tasks, getting outside.  7 May - usual depression questionnaire gives "probably no depression" result.

Supps/Vits  Omega 3;  Chelated Magnesium;  Prebiotics/Probiotics, Vit D3. 

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hi purplerain welcome, I'm also on the devil Effexor ,we are a long time away from being able to prosecute these imbosills that think they know what they are  at with these drugs ,sorry for your troubles caused by these drugs ,judge yourself on how great you are to take care of your daughter through it ,don't judge yourself on your behaviour because of poison given to by trusted so called doctors .

good on you for your sobriety .I'm also sober myself [2.5 years ] and proud .

never doubt yourself and good luck in your future with your daughter .I have a little niece and she has brought me great joy in a year of absolute hell .

PB

Alcohol free since February 2015 

1MG diazepam

4.5MG PROZAC.

 

 

 

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  • 1 month later...

Hi peng and powerback, thank you for your kind replies, and sorry to hear you've also experienced the Effexor nightmare. Peng, I was informed that they no longer prescribe the XR capsules in the U.K. as they are more expensive to produce? Clearly another case of a GP being totally clueless/uninformed about these drugs that they so readily prescribe. Pb, congratulations on 2.5 years of sobriety! I reached 6 years last month. Truly a miracle. 

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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Update: I have been experiencing some emotional withdrawal symptoms which I've noticed definitely worsen during my hormonal time of the month. Last week I was feeling very angry and negative, which is not like me at all. I got into a huge fight with the man I have been dating for two months over text, and I was uncharacteristically rude. I felt ashamed of my behaviour afterwards. I feel very dissociated, sluggish and 'out of it' a lot of the time particularly at work, which I know it is largely triggered by the flourescent lighting (I work in a large bookshop so nothing can be done about this). Luckily I only currently work two days a week, as I am finding it completely exhausting. I can feel my baseline mood has dropped and I am having negative thoughts about my life and the old script starts running about no one caring about me or understanding how much I'm struggling, that I'm all alone and unreachable. I feel very disconnected from my friends and my family other than my little girl. But I've also been a bit snappy and irritable with my daughter, which makes me feel awful. I don't seem to have much interest in doing any of the things I used to enjoy (once baby is asleep) like reading, writing and crafts. The fatigue is pretty intense, coffee doesn't seem to work for as long as it used tonand staying up past 11pm is an impossibility I don't even attempt anymore. I am going to hold at this dose until I stabilise rather than reduce by another 10% in five days time. I know I will be free of this some day, it's the final battle. I won't let it beat me; I've survived too much already.

 

 

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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28 minutes ago, Purplerain said:

Hi peng and powerback, thank you for your kind replies, and sorry to hear you've also experienced the Effexor nightmare. Peng, I was informed that they no longer prescribe the XR capsules in the U.K. as they are more expensive to produce? Clearly another case of a GP being totally clueless/uninformed about these drugs that they so readily prescribe. Pb, congratulations on 2.5 years of sobriety! I reached 6 years last month. Truly a miracle. 

6 years is great well done .

Alcohol free since February 2015 

1MG diazepam

4.5MG PROZAC.

 

 

 

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  • 1 month later...

Update: Although my personal life is a mess (ended most recent relationship after yet another angry fight; I was completely ambivalent about him the whole time we were together) withdrawal-wise I am not doing too badly. Last month I began the 'brass monkey slide' method of tapering and this has been suiting me well. I'm currently down to 26.5mg Effexor. Still experiencing intense fatigue but can just about function in all arenas. Cognitively I still get jumbled up sometimes, usually in conversation. It's like I can't access certain, often basic, words. I sometimes stutter and mix my words together too, definitely a withdrawal symptom as I've never had this problem before. The other main symptom has been some emotional numbness. A couple of people very close to me are really suffering at the moment with illnesses (MS and cancer) and I know I am sad about it but I can't access the sadness. The same with my recent breakup, I know I'm sad about it and I have cried a little bit but mostly I can't access the pain. The last time I had this problem was in 2010, I was newly sober and on 300mg Effexor. So I know that it's the drug that's responsible. Kind of scared all the pain from the last 10 years is going to catch up with me when I'm finally free of this horrible drug. I have faith that I can handle whatever life throws at me. Onward and upward.

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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Good luck, Purplerain, you are doing well.

Your writing is most articulate, so the old brain isn't so scrambled!

Born 1945. 

1999 - First Effexor/Venlafaxine

2016 Withdrawal research. Effexor.  13Jul - 212.5mg;  6Aug - 200.0mg;  24Aug - 187.5mg;  13Sep - 175.0mg;  3Oct - 162.5mg;  26Oct - 150mg 

2017  9Jan - 150.00mg;  23Mar - 137.50mg;  24Apr - 125.00mg;  31May - 112.50mg holding;  3Sep - 100.00mg;  20Sep - 93.75mg;  20Oct - 87.5mg;  12Nov - 81.25mg;  13 Dec - 75.00mg

2018  18Jan - 69.1mg; 16Feb - 62.5mg; 16March - 57.5mg (-8%); 22Apr - 56.3mg(-2%); CRASHED - Updose 29May - 62.5mg; Updose - 1Jul - 75.0mg. Updose - 2Aug - 87.5mg. Updose - 27Aug - 100.0mg. Updose - 11Oct 112.5mg. Updose - 6Nov 125.00mg

2019 Updoses 19 Jan - 150.0mg. 1April - 162.5mg. 24 April - Feeling better - doing tasks, getting outside.  7 May - usual depression questionnaire gives "probably no depression" result.

Supps/Vits  Omega 3;  Chelated Magnesium;  Prebiotics/Probiotics, Vit D3. 

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Thank you Peng! That made me smile. Much love to you x

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • Moderator Emeritus
8 hours ago, Purplerain said:

Kind of scared all the pain from the last 10 years is going to catch up with me when I'm finally free of this horrible drug. I have faith that I can handle whatever life throws at me.

 

I've been on an AD for 25+ years and I'm started to get my emotions back.  I didn't realise how numb I had been over the post 1/4 century.  Things from this time are coming back to me now but I find that not dwelling on them too much and just reminding myself that it is in the past and I can't do anything to change it helps.  Acknowledging them and letting them go.  I managed the best I could at the time and that is what matters.  I feel disappointed and regretful but it is what it is.  Beating myself up isn't going to help and is only going to hurt me now.

NEW!!!     INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder    NEW!!! 

 

Plodding along inch by inch:  12" = 1',  3' =  36 " or 1 yard,  1760 yards  = 63,360" or 1 mile

Current from 17 Apr 2021:  Pristiq 0.2665mg  now holding each dose for 3 weeks

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 Oct 2015 

My 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.

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  • 2 months later...
On 08/10/2017 at 12:54 AM, ChessieCat said:

 

I've been on an AD for 25+ years and I'm started to get my emotions back.  I didn't realise how numb I had been over the post 1/4 century.  Things from this time are coming back to me now but I find that not dwelling on them too much and just reminding myself that it is in the past and I can't do anything to change it helps.  Acknowledging them and letting them go.  I managed the best I could at the time and that is what matters.  I feel disappointed and regretful but it is what it is.  Beating myself up isn't going to help and is only going to hurt me now.

 

Chessie thank you, I really appreciate your advice. The ice is definitely starting to melt now, so to speak. Will post an update shortly.

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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Update: As of 18th December I am now down to half the dose I was on when I began my taper: 18.75mg. I have been feeling some withdrawal symptoms such as tearfulness, low mood, occasional intrusive suicidal thoughts (just to clarify I have no desire to actually kill myself), social anxiety and hypersensitivity to noise. As a single mother I used to rely heavily on caffeine to get through the day but coffee has now begun to make me anxious and if I have more than one cup it affects my sleep. As I was so sedated by Effexor before I used to be able to fall asleep at any time I chose regardless of my caffeine consumption during the day. I am grateful that I don’t feel sedated anymore, although I still feel very groggy in the morning. 

 

The worst side effect for me is my short fuse with my little girl (2 and a half years old). I can get very snappy with her and even shout, which is not how I want to parent and makes me feel immensely guilty, which then fuels the tearfulness and feeling like a rubbish person. I left her father a year and a half ago due to his abusive behaviour towards me but recently I’ve been missing him and feeling desperate to be back with him, only remembering the good times. He has moved on from me so this is not an option but it is very painful and distressing, especially when I know in my heart it would be the wrong thing to do. I suppose it has to do with feeling so alone in this withdrawal, and wishing I had someone to look after me (which my ex never did, hence why I never attempted to withdraw when I was with him!) I just find this longing for him so distressing because it feels like I’m two people at the same time. I’ve decided to hold at this dose for a while before I feel a bit more stable. If you’ve managed to read this far, thank you x

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • Moderator
manymoretodays

Hi Purplerain,

 

Have you tried any of the Fish Oil or Magnesium yet?  Are you with your little one 24/7 by yourself now?  That can be tough, if so.  And none of us are perfect.......as far as you shouting at her once in awhile.  If that is the worst you do.......you are doing well.  Do you do play groups or such in England?  Where you could have her engage with other little ones while you talk with other Mums. 

 

Boy oh boy......the crabby phase was hard on others, my others.......while it was at it's peak.

 

Part of the challenge I suppose......is learning to look after ourselves, in the best way possible through all this.  Do you exercise or do any movement type therapy on your own?  That would be fun to do with a 2 year old.    I'm sure it's still very painful after your child's father is now gone and moved on........the missing him, despite his flaws.......is pretty normal........just painful.  ((((hugs)))))  I think for stuff like that.......sometimes the 2 year mark is golden.  The intensity just lessens somehow.  Other relationships can help a lot too......I mean not just the man/woman kind, but of any kind.  Befriend an older person maybe.  Or a teenager.

 

Good to see you back and the progress that you have made.

 

Love, peace, healing/inrecovery, and growth,

 

mmt

 

 

Started with psycho meds/psychiatric care circa 1988.  In retrospect, and on contemplation, situational overwhelm.

Rounding up to 30 years of medications(30 medication trials, poly-pharmacy maximum was 3 at one time).

5/28/2015-off Adderal salts 2.5mg. (I had been on that since hospital 10/2014)

12/2015---just holding, holding, holding, with trileptal/oxcarb at 75 mg. 1/2 tab at hs.  My last psycho med ever!  Tapered @ 10% every 4 weeks, sometimes 2 weeks to

2016 Dec 16 medication free!!

Longer signature post here, with current supplements.

Herb and alcohol free since 5/15/2016. 

None of my posts are intended as medical advice.  Please discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical provider. manymoretodays

 

Link to post
13 hours ago, manymoretodays said:

Hi Purplerain,

 

Have you tried any of the Fish Oil or Magnesium yet?  Are you with your little one 24/7 by yourself now?  That can be tough, if so.  And none of us are perfect.......as far as you shouting at her once in awhile.  If that is the worst you do.......you are doing well.  Do you do play groups or such in England?  Where you could have her engage with other little ones while you talk with other Mums. 

 

Boy oh boy......the crabby phase was hard on others, my others.......while it was at it's peak.

 

Part of the challenge I suppose......is learning to look after ourselves, in the best way possible through all this.  Do you exercise or do any movement type therapy on your own?  That would be fun to do with a 2 year old.    I'm sure it's still very painful after your child's father is now gone and moved on........the missing him, despite his flaws.......is pretty normal........just painful.  ((((hugs)))))  I think for stuff like that.......sometimes the 2 year mark is golden.  The intensity just lessens somehow.  Other relationships can help a lot too......I mean not just the man/woman kind, but of any kind.  Befriend an older person maybe.  Or a teenager.

 

Good to see you back and the progress that you have made.

 

Love, peace, healing/inrecovery, and growth,

 

mmt

 

 

 

Mmt, thank you so much for this,  I am really touched by your kind and thoughtful response. I work two days a week during which time my ex or my parents look after my daughter, so I am not with her 24/7 although it can feel that way. There are playgroups but my social anxiety can get really bad around other mums I don’t know and my little one is not quite at the stage where she’s happy to play with other children away from me yet, though she’s almost there. I’m hoping to start her at my friend’s mum’s nursery for a couple of mornings a week in the new year, which will give me a little bit of precious time to myself. Joining a movement or exercise class with her is a great idea so thank you very much for that, I remember seeing something about a local mother and toddler yoga class a while ago which sounded fun. And other relationships really do help don’t they, I’m in a couple of 12 step fellowships and find when I reach out to other young women who might be struggling it really gets me out of self and makes me feel useful again. 

 

Thank you again and lots of love to you <3 xx

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • Moderator
manymoretodays

No problem Purplerain.   A Prince fan?  Me too.......RIP Prince :(  A sad loss for many.

 

So I shall type in purple on your thread.  I really admire your due diligence and slow taper.

 

I think that if at any time you need to even decrease by less than the 10%...........that that's okay too.  I did the math from June to December and it looks like you have done your 10% of each dose monthly?  At 4 or 6 week intervals?

 

I do see many who sing praises for the "Claire Weeks method of Recovering from a Sensitized Nervous System".  Anxiety.......social included, I'm sure.    Here's a bit of discussion around that, and I did see some links there as well:

http://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/10964-the-dr-claire-weekes-method-of-recovering-from-a-sens 

 

I hope you do a movement class with your little one.  Quite possibly you might acclimate and find another Mom friend!  And awesome that you too, have benefited, from a 12 step program!  For me........it came nearly after all my medication..........and I'm pretty sure that's the way it was meant to be............versus.........what would my life look like, how would it be different.........if I had 12 stepped first.  Interesting yet most days.......happy with my journey to date.

 

Keep on checking in with us once in awhile, okay?

 

Love, peace, healing/inrecovery, and growth,

 

mmt

 

 

 

Edited by manymoretodays
oh, I always elaborate somewhere

Started with psycho meds/psychiatric care circa 1988.  In retrospect, and on contemplation, situational overwhelm.

Rounding up to 30 years of medications(30 medication trials, poly-pharmacy maximum was 3 at one time).

5/28/2015-off Adderal salts 2.5mg. (I had been on that since hospital 10/2014)

12/2015---just holding, holding, holding, with trileptal/oxcarb at 75 mg. 1/2 tab at hs.  My last psycho med ever!  Tapered @ 10% every 4 weeks, sometimes 2 weeks to

2016 Dec 16 medication free!!

Longer signature post here, with current supplements.

Herb and alcohol free since 5/15/2016. 

None of my posts are intended as medical advice.  Please discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical provider. manymoretodays

 

Link to post
  • 3 months later...

Thank you again mmt for your sweet response, your posts always make me smile- you seem like such a lovely person. I am indeed a Prince fan and my favourite live Act I have ever seen was him live at the O2 Arena in London 2007. His talent was astounding, what a loss to this world indeed!

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

Link to post

Update: have been intending to post for a while but life has got busy. I am down to 12.5mg Effexor now and after reading around the site and experiencing some unpleasant symptoms I have realised I definitely need to slow it down from now on. These symptoms include palpitations, headaches, extreme tingling in hands and feet, extreme sensitivity to artificial light, mental confusion and cog fog, feelings of self-loathing, intrusive suicidal thoughts and PMS related rage. The issue I have is that when I feel fine, I feel really good, so I think let’s press on and make another cut, possibly a bit too soon and without accounting for the fact that I was feeling awful a few days prior. I threw myself back at the feet of my daughter’s narcissistic father back in January and slept with him again, then allowed him to string me along for a few months which has obviously contributed massively to my wellbeing or lack of. This has now ended, thankfully. Although I am still left with the abandonment feelings again. I see now how I do this to myself, the attraction to the trauma of unavailable people is so strong and actually was the reason I ended up on these drugs in the first place.  

 

I have had some real ‘aha!’ Moments over the last few months reading threads on this site, some that break my heart to think about really. I am only just coming to terms with the extent that my life has been affected by these drugs. I didn’t put it in my signature because I didn’t think it relevant for some reason, but I was on Prozac for a year between age 15 and 16. At the time I felt like the drug did absolutely nothing, but I was smoking weed every day at this time too so I wasn’t very self aware. I cold turkeyed the drug in 2004 because I started taking ecstasy and I noticed the Prozac counterracted the effects of that. At the time I believed I experienced no side effects from doing this. However, since reading through threads on this site about some people’s experience with smoking weed in withdrawal, I have now made the connection that my panic attacks from weed started EXACTLY around the time I cold turkeyed the Prozac. Weed never had this effect on me before then, it just used to calm me. After the prozac cold turkey I would experience racing heart, intense paranoia (to the point of not being able to speak because I sounded so stupid in my head I thought everyone was judging me) and a feeling of not being able to breathe. Every. single. time I smoked. So I stopped smoking weed and moved onto harder drugs! 

 

Another thing I have realised is that my promiscuous behaviour began exactly around the time I started on Effexor when I was 20. Before then, I was with the same partner for three and a half years, and though it was turbulent and we were both very damaged, I was always faithful to him. After that broke up and I was put on the tablets, I had years of a couple of different things happening. One is that I would start seeing someone who was nice, we got on really well etc. I would feel like I was falling in love. Then, very abruptly after a couple of months, I would suddenly find him sexually repulsive and have to break up with them. This happened about ten times and I hurt a lot of people.

 

The second thing with men, was that I would be extremely attracted to men who were totally emotionally unavailable and although they would tell me they were committed to me, were actuallt totally ambivalent about their feelings towards me. I would chase these men for years, always go back to them after they dumped me or cheated or broke my heart another time. My daughter’s father was the most extreme case of this. I would experience a very strong chemical high from getting attention from these unavailable men. I was never like this before SSRIs. I grew up with a loving, devoted father who was a very equal parent in my upbringing is still married to my mother. I had a great example of what a man can be. It makes no sense that I would chase men who treated me terribly, it doesn’t resound with who I really am. I am hesitant to blame the ADs on everything because I don’t know how things might have turned out without them, but it is hard not to hold them responsible in a way. I have noticed now that I’m not getting the ‘hit’ of attention from my Ex my baseline mood is basically depressed and I struggle to feel joy. Yes it’s true I always had an issue with needing male attention due to my poor self image. But I can’t help but notice the link of when this addiction to the unavailable seemed to start. I’ve committed to be single for 2018 at least as I don’t want to keep playing out this destructive and life devastating pattern, and I’m aware a lot of healing needs to be done. I’ve been listening to energy clearing podcasts and mp3s and I believe that is where the solution lies, in releasing the trauma that is physically trapped in my body. Daily meditation and my yoga practice are aiding this too. There is hope, there is always hope. I am only thirty, which was terrifying to me as it means I’m thirty and ‘alone’, but I have made peace with it now. I have entered Act 2 of my life, which will be infinitely more self loving than Act 1 was. I have my beautiful daughter, and I have taken the first steps on my career change journey to become a children's Counsellor. I feel I have found my calling in this and a way I can use the gifts God gave me for the greater good. I am starting to attract lovely, conscious people into my life. It is Spring and rebirth and renewal is happening all around. Love and light and healing to you all xxx

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • Moderator Emeritus
12 hours ago, Purplerain said:

I am hesitant to blame the ADs on everything because I don’t know how things might have turned out without them, but it is hard not to hold them responsible in a way.

 

I can understand this comment.  What went through my mind as I was reading your post was that psychiatric drugs numb our emotions.  It wasn't until my dose got lower that I realised how numb my emotions had been for the last 25 years.  For me the numbing gave me a "laid back" feeling, of not being as emotionally affected about things as I had been and am now.  Because of my life circumstances (a sick husband who showed me no love or emotional support) it was in some ways beneficial to be numbed.  However, for you being emotionally numbed may be what led you to seek what you did because for a time it would give you a feeling.

 

Just some thoughts.

NEW!!!     INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder    NEW!!! 

 

Plodding along inch by inch:  12" = 1',  3' =  36 " or 1 yard,  1760 yards  = 63,360" or 1 mile

Current from 17 Apr 2021:  Pristiq 0.2665mg  now holding each dose for 3 weeks

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 Oct 2015 

My 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.

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21 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

 

I can understand this comment.  What went through my mind as I was reading your post was that psychiatric drugs numb our emotions.  It wasn't until my dose got lower that I realised how numb my emotions had been for the last 25 years.  For me the numbing gave me a "laid back" feeling, of not being as emotionally affected about things as I had been and am now.  Because of my life circumstances (a sick husband who showed me no love or emotional support) it was in some ways beneficial to be numbed.  However, for you being emotionally numbed may be what led you to seek what you did because for a time it would give you a feeling.

 

Just some thoughts.

 

Hi Chessie thank you for reading and replying. I think you’re right about looking for feelings to bring me out of the numbness. Like you I’m only just becoming aware of how numb I have been on the ADs in many ways. My anger response is back now and I find it horribly uncomfortable and overwhelming at times, just as I did before ADs. I genuinely thought I had just become a more patient and tolerant person! Alas.

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • 1 month later...
Purplerain

Update

 

I have completed by Level 2 in Children's Counselling and amazingly found out last week that I came top of my class. This is extremely positive. However, today I had a car accident. I had been in the hairdressers for hours and hadn't eaten particularly well all day and was feeling groggy and mentally fogged. I still don't understand how this happened, but I managed to crash into the side of a stationary car while driving down a narrow road. I literally did not see the car, it did not register in my peripheral vision - I had no idea it was there. I haven't had a car accident for nearly ten years, I pride myself on being a very good and careful driver, and it's massively shaken me up. An older lady and her granddaughter were sat in the stationary car that I crashed into, they were both fine but I feel horrendously guilty especially as the little girl was close to my daughter in age (my daughter was thankfully not with me at the time). It was during school pickup time so loads of people witnessed my stupidity. I strongly believe the effects of tapering are partly to blame for my accident, and it terrifies me. This brain fog is just a nightmare. I have spent this afternoon in a huge shame spiral, despite things going well I feel like when I make a mistake I suddenly feel completely inadequate. It's the same when I lose my temper with my little girl, which is happening more these days as she is really into testing my limits at the moment. I have experienced this fragile self esteem all my life but I believe the antidepressants numbed it somewhat. 

 

Other things that are reemerging are my discomfort with eye contact, at the moment it just feels so intense and the energy of the other person almost overwhelms me. Fluorescent lighting still massively exacerbating feelings of derealisation. I'm worried that I might actually have to get signed off work for a while if it becomes any worse than it is. It gets to the point where a customer will be talking to me and I just cannot respond to what they are saying, I can hear them, but it's like the part of my brain that can engage in conversation just momentarily shuts off. I can literally feel the wall come down in my head, it can be quite embarrassing and I might even come across as rude. Despite how annoying this all is I do find I am able to function pretty well most days. I can definitely feel the difference if I haven't meditated on a given day or if I haven't been able to exercise as much in a week. I also think too much wheat doesn't help with the brain fog, it's just such a shame I don't always have the energy to make meals that don't involve bread or pasta as they're such convenience foods. This post has been a bit rambly so if you've taken the time to read it I thank you! Love and light to all xxx

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • 1 month later...

Update: Down to 10mg now. Have had a realisation that I use the attention of men as a drug to give me a dopamine hit and bring myself out of my baseline mood, which is generally flat and depressed. I broke up with the man (the same one from last year) that I had been seeing again for two months last week and have fallen back into depression. It's quite incredible really as I felt so good when I was getting the 'love hit' and barely noticed my withdrawal symptoms. But the relationship was not right or healthy for me in a few ways so I had to end it. The loneliness was back on me instantly. I've been feeling hungry a lot (possibly my body trying to get that dopamine hit through other means?) and doing odd things like secretly eating meat (I've been vegetarian since January) and not telling anyone. I've also been staying up pointlessly late, surfing Quora on my phone, and feeling exhausted the next morning when my daughter wakes me. It's the Summer holidays here and she is off nursery so I'm trying to fill our days but I'm just so tired and lacking motivation. I've noticed some other odd little ticks I've developed, like half talking to myself when I'm alone and making weird facial expressions that go with my thoughts, sometimes in public. I am having intrusive suicidal thoughts again where I repeatedly have the image of a gun being raised to the side of my head by myself. I have no drive to kill myself but it is at best irritating and at worst distressing. I don't feel there is anyone in my life I can talk to about any of this and that makes me very sad. I'm still pretty isolated although have been seeing people more because it's summer/ On the plus side my little girl and I are getting on amazingly and my love and appreciation for her is strong.

 

I've had an interview for my Level 3 in children's counselling which went well, but the charity's safeguarding team have requested I send them a letter I got from social services two years ago confirming that they closed my case. My daughter's dad got physical with me in June 2016 and the police got involved and got a social worker to come and visit me a couple of times to check that I was keeping my daughter safe. I was, which they could clearly see, and the case was closed. But having to look through the documents from that time again have sent me into a shame spiral and I'm terrified at the prospect of being judged as a bad person by the safeguarding team and not being able to continue on this career path. I genuinely feel there is nothing else in the world I want to do for a job, I that is so perfectly aligned with my gifts and who I am. The sense of being on the right path and following my calling is what has kept me going for the whole of this year. I am trying to stay positive and not catastrophise because I know I have done nothing wrong. But the social worker's report refers to my 'historical drug use' several times although it does mention I have been clean five years, I'm worried it frames me in an unfavourable light for working with children as the safeguarding team have obviously never met me and could make all kinds of negative assumptions. It also mentions how I changed my story to the police (which I was emotionally manipulated into doing by my ex) which makes me sound like a liar and an exaggerator. They haven't asked to see the report yet so just praying that the letter saying the case has been closed is enough.

 

Current symptoms: Minor depression (not debilitating), tearfulness, overeating, hypersensitivity to light and sound, intrusive suicidal thoughts, demotivation, anxiety in busy places, anger, extreme forgetfulness, constant clenched jaw (pretty sure it's been clenched constantly for a decade now), ruminating on how these meds have altered the course of my life and what I might have been without them

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • 6 months later...

Update

 

I got a place on the Level 3 course and have now completed that. Just one more two year course alongside a placement in a school and I will be a fully qualified children's play therapist :) I'm down to a very low dose now (5.5mg) and am aware that I will need to go extra slowly from now on. Proud of myself for getting this far, despite the difficulties. I have been extremely short-tempered with my daughter recently and I've noticed this symptom is worse in the two weeks after my ovulation before my period starts. I had to take emergency contraception last week and the extra whack of hormones from that has really done a number on me and I've been super low all week. A week prior to that I had to take antibiotics which also messed me up. I've been tearful and obsessively ruminating on my loneliness and regret, feeling totally miserable and beyond redemption. I met someone lovely off Tinder recently but he is moving a couple of hundred miles away in September so there isn't really any long-term potential there. Although he is kind and open and honest and treats me wonderfully, he is deeply damaged from childhood trauma, and admits being terrified of attachment. I truly believe in the spiritual law that 'we attract where we're at' and I have attracted someone like this because I myself am terrified and/or incapable of attachment at the moment. We are providing some kind of support for each other as friends, which is nice. And even though this may not work out, it shows me the sort of thing I want for myself in the future. A partner who is also a friend.

 

I am in no fit state to be dating right now, and I know this. But I am so tired of doing this all alone, without a partner to support me. Parenting a small child alone, getting up before sunrise every morning to walk her to nursery in the freezing cold. Stuck in the house on my own every evening because she sleeps so badly when I'm not there that it would be too stressful to get a babysitter. The only way I can go out is if we stay with my parents and my dad puts her to bed, but this upsets her routine and she acts out accordingly (which I'm finding it near impossible to cope with some days). Last week I accidentally went five days without any adult contact other than the brief couple of minutes interaction with other parents at nursery drop offs. Lack of human contact makes me go utterly insane in my head and my thoughts quickly become very unhealthy. I strongly believe that we are social creatures, and we have evolved to live in tribes. I am blessed to have dear friends but they nearly all have husbands and full time jobs or small children of their own, so I rarely see them. I have one neighbour with a son of a similar age to my daughter and we meet up every week, take it in turns with the two kids to give the other a break. She is a Godsend and in all honesty I would be lost without her at the moment. Other things that help me are exercise, but my motivation is so poor this often doesn't happen. I don't even have the energy to shower some days. My thoughts around this are that I feel hideous no matter what, so why bother? Still force myself to do my daily meditation, and I've noticed when I do it holding my big rose quartz I feel instantly calmer. I know that I am just going through a bad patch right now due to the accumulated effects of the withdrawal plus antibiotics plus morning-after pill hormones. I just need to weather this storm until I feel ready to smile again.

 

Current symptoms: Mild depression, cognitive difficulties in conversation - difficulty accessing and expressing what I want to say adequately, early morning cortisol spikes (manifests as a physical jolt of anxiety right in the heart chakra), suicidal thoughts, negative rumination, apathy, anhedonia, neuro-anger, poor short term memory and difficulty retaining information, clenched jaw, hypersensitivity to noise and bright lights

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • Administrator

Congratulation on the progress in your studies, Purplerain.

 

You might hold at 5.5mg Effexor for some months, give your nervous system a rest.

 

Many women find their withdrawal symptoms are worse at times in their cycles. Maybe herbal remedies for premenstrual or menstrual stress would help?

 

It sounds like you need some company more frequently. Are there any other mothers with small children nearby with whom you might have a chat circle? Perhaps share playdates with your daughter and one or two other children? That would give each of you in turn some time to yourself.

 

If your daughter graduated to sleepovers at friends' homes, so much the better.

 

Please read

 

Neuro-emotions

 

Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms

 

Dealing With Emotional Spirals


Easing your way into meditation for a stressed-out nervous system

 

A lot of people find fish oil and magnesium supplements helpful, see
http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/36-king-of-supplements-omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil/

http://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/15483-magnesium-natures-calcium-channel-blocker/


Try a little bit of one at a time to see how it affects you.

 

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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On 2/5/2019 at 11:32 PM, Altostrata said:

Congratulation on the progress in your studies, Purplerain.

 

You might hold at 5.5mg Effexor for some months, give your nervous system a rest.

 

Many women find their withdrawal symptoms are worse at times in their cycles. Maybe herbal remedies for premenstrual or menstrual stress would help?

 

It sounds like you need some company more frequently. Are there any other mothers with small children nearby with whom you might have a chat circle? Perhaps share playdates with your daughter and one or two other children? That would give each of you in turn some time to yourself.

 

If your daughter graduated to sleepovers at friends' homes, so much the better.

 

Please read

 

Neuro-emotions

 

Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms

 

Dealing With Emotional Spirals


Easing your way into meditation for a stressed-out nervous system

 

A lot of people find fish oil and magnesium supplements helpful, see
http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/36-king-of-supplements-omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil/

http://survivingantidepressants.org/topic/15483-magnesium-natures-calcium-channel-blocker/


Try a little bit of one at a time to see how it affects you.

 

 

Hi Alto, thank you for taking the time to read my post and write such a considered response, I am very grateful to you and all the amazing work you do with this site.

 

I’m definitely going to rest at 5.5mg for a while now, I’m really feeling the withdrawal effects today now I’m in prime PMS time. Cog fog, low energy, irritability, intrusive suicidal thoughts and a lot of emotional pain coming up. Thank you for posting those threads, I’m going to have a read through all of them. I do take magnesium every day which has seemed to be beneficial since I started taking it, but have yet to find a fish oil that I feel actually does anything. Perhaps a visit to a health food shop is in order.

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • Moderator Emeritus
8 hours ago, Purplerain said:

but have yet to find a fish oil that I feel actually does anything

 

There are some things that we take to benefit from that we don't actually "feel" anything from but it is doing some good somewhere in the body nevertheless.

NEW!!!     INTERVIEW with Altostrata, SA's founder    NEW!!! 

 

Plodding along inch by inch:  12" = 1',  3' =  36 " or 1 yard,  1760 yards  = 63,360" or 1 mile

Current from 17 Apr 2021:  Pristiq 0.2665mg  now holding each dose for 3 weeks

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 Oct 2015 

My 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.

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  • Administrator

The effect of fish oil, if you feel any, is very mild. But your nervous system uses omega-3 fatty acids to repair itself.

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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22 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

 

There are some things that we take to benefit from that we don't actually "feel" anything from but it is doing some good somewhere in the body nevertheless.

 

20 hours ago, Altostrata said:

The effect of fish oil, if you feel any, is very mild. But your nervous system uses omega-3 fatty acids to repair itself.

 

Thank you both, I will stick at it then. I was suspicious of the brand I have because I bit into a capsule and it didn’t even taste of fish, I will persevere and try another brand.

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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  • 1 year later...

Wow, it's been a very long time since my last update. I've been putting it off because there feels like far too much to fit in, but I will give it a go.

 

I am down to just 1.8mg Venlafaxine now. I can function, but now I am on such a tiny dose I can really feel the withdrawal daily. It is so difficult to describe how I experience the world day to day, because it has become my normal now, yet I know that it is far from normal. The biggest symptom for me day to day is feeling spaced out/out of it/derealised. The world has a dreamlike feel to it, a bit fuzzy round the edges - I almost feel as though I am underwater sometimes. Bright sunlight feels overwhelming to my head and makes me screw up my face and squint. I "zone out" frequently and have to physically fight to be present while driving sometimes. My second biggest symptom is my cognitive struggles. They are definitely worse when in the presence of other people. I can usually grasp the words I need in my head when I am alone, but for some reason when I am in conversation I lose grasp of the simplest of words. It makes me feel disabled and is sometimes really embarrassing. It is worse when I am tired, for example on the phone to my friend after work the other night I realised I wasn't making sense even to myself. Sometimes the wall drops down in my head and I go totally blank, no idea what to say. My third biggest symptom is my hair-trigger temper. I can go from nought to sixty in a flash and it's scary. I lose my temper with my daughter when she is not listening and being defiant, I find myself completely triggered and shouting. I hate this so much and feel such shame because I sound just like my mother used to sound to me. If I could magic any symptom away, it would 100% be this. I would suffer through everything else if I could just be more patient with her. I used to be so laid-back (or was I just numb from the meds?) but now can get angry with anyone that dares to cross me! Luckily this is not many people. I did become very irate with a particularly difficult customer at work a few weeks ago. Thankfully my manager took my side in it.

 

I go through phases of having early morning cortisol surges. I haven't had one for a few weeks but then sometimes will have one every morning for a week, always when I need to be up the next morning (which is six mornings a week now since my daughter has returned to school and I have returned to working Sundays). These seem to coincide with experiencing IBS type symptoms. I seem to be permanently bloated and gassy. I was like this on the meds too. Most foods seem to cause gas. I fear the meds have caused real damage to my gastrointestinal system.

 

Going back to the gym since they reopened has done wonders for lifting my mood. I also still attend my 12-step groups on Zoom. I credit my daily meditation practice with allowing me to maintain my sanity. I cannot recommend meditation highly enough as a coping tool, I'd truly be a mess without it.

 

During the national lockdown, me and my daughter stayed with my parents for nearly 4 months. I did notice that during this time my withdrawal symptoms appeared to abate, other than feeling flat and apathetic. I believe this was due to reduced contact with other people, no rushing around from one place to the next, and having to do very little thinking and planning other than meeting my daughter's basic needs each day. It was by no means easy and I would never want to go through it again, but I definitely noticed the physical withdrawal symptoms lessened during this time.

 

I find what is happening in the world currently incredibly disturbing. It feels to me like the restrictions are becoming more and more sinister, less about the virus and more about control of the people. I have to minimise my intake of news because it gets my nervous system very agitated. In the UK we are told one thing by our government, then the next week told the opposite is true. For example, the public were told to "eat out to help out" and given £10 discounts to eat in restaurants throughout all of August, then blamed for the resurge in cases. It feels like we're being gaslighted, and having been in an abusive relationship I am particularly sensitive to the signs of this. I worry for my daughter's future the most. What kind of a world have I brought her into? The idea of a forced, rushed-through vaccination is particularly disturbing to me. Consent about what we put in our own bodies is so important. If we'd have known what we were consenting to when we first took SSRIs, I'm sure none of us would have taken that first pill! I vehemently distrust Big Pharma now and most doctors, and also the Tory government, so it's very hard for me to get a solid grip on what is actually happening because I just see lies everywhere. I have to pray every day to stay strong in my Truth. Love is infinitely stronger than fear.

 

Despite all this, I continue to function. I can just about take care of my house and my daughter, show up for my job (thankfully just one day a week at the moment due to still being part-furloughed) and I am now in the final year of my Children's Counselling qualification. Yesterday I returned to the school in which I am doing my counselling placement for the first time since March. I had been working with two children in the school for the two months prior to lockdown. Never has there been a greater need for Child Counsellors in light of all that is happening right now. I feel blessed to be on the way to making this into a profession for me. It is so, so important that I remain stable. If anyone has taken the time to read this, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your time and attention. Love and light x L

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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5 minutes ago, Purplerain said:

 I can really feel the withdrawal daily.

Congratulations on getting so low.  You might want consider a hold.  Symptoms can build up with a 10% taper and it might be a good idea to rest a bit and let them settle down.

Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg since 2004.  Begin Brassmonkey Slide Taper 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  

Oct. 30, 2020  Jump to zero from 0.025mg.  Current dose: 0.000mg

3 year, 10 month taper is 100% complete.

 

Ativan 1 mg 1986-1991 CT, soon reinstated.  CT 2000. RI 1 mg 2011-2016.  Sept. 2016  0.625mg X 3

Nov.27, 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover + change to one 18.75mg dose, w/1 month hold.

Feb. 9, 2021, begin 10% every 4 weeks taper.  Current dose as of May 18: 11.7mgai.  Taper is 37.6% complete.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan. 2016 began every 3-weeks 10% taper, down to 16mgai (44mgpw).  Aug 2016, discovered SA, holding at 16mg.  Taper is 78% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega, vitamins C, E and D3, magnesium glycinate, probiotic, zinc, melatonin .3mg.


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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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Purplerain: introducing myself - tapering off Effexor 37.5mg
9 hours ago, Gridley said:

Congratulations on getting so low.  You might want consider a hold.  Symptoms can build up with a 10% taper and it might be a good idea to rest a bit and let them settle down.

 Thank you Gridley :) it looks like you’re doing brilliantly with your tapering from your signature. I need to update my signature to make it more clear, most recently I have been doing a variation of the brass monkey slide: 5% cut then a two week hold; then 5% again followed by a four week hold. But I hear what you’re saying about the symptoms building up. It’s been just over two weeks since my last 5% reduction (the second one) and I’m in no hurry to cut again. 

2008 put on 75mg Effexor XR (Venlafaxine) after breakup with long term boyfriend

2009 Dose increased to 150mg

2010 Dose increased to 300mg plus 25mg Quetiapine added to aid sleep and control hypomania

2011 first attempt to withdraw. Taper much too fast on psychiatrist's advice (300-0mg in 1 month) suffer first and only psychotic episode. Put back on 75mg generic Venlafaxine (no more Quetiapine)

2014 reduce dose to 1/4 of a 37.5mg Venlafaxine tablet during pregnancy. Suffer extreme social anxiety/agoraphobia

2015 Daughter is born. Advised not to breastfeed due to Ven being present in breastmilk. Suffer PND and go back to taking 37.5mg tablet daily. Start to experience heavy fatigue each day after taking Venlafaxine tablet.

14th June 2017 - start 10% monthly taper reduction method. June 2018: 10mg June 2019: 4.5ml September 2019: Switch to 5% reduction, followed by 2 week hold; then 5% further reduction, followed by 4 week hold. June 2020: 2mg

14th September 2020 - 1.8mg (current dose) Supplements: Magnesium citrate; Olive leaf extract; Fish oil capsules

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