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RealMe: Fighting depression/withdrawal from Abilify, Trintellix now on Prozac

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Rosetta

Thinking of you, RM.  I think it's good to distract until the anxiety dissapates. -R

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RealMe
37 minutes ago, Rosetta said:

Thinking of you, RM.  I think it's good to distract until the anxiety dissapates. -R

Thank you so much, Rosetta.  I am experiencing stomach distress and trying to distract myself from thinking.  I haven't eaten anything different, so it might be from the stress.  I lost a little weight recently, and I attribute that to tapering the prozac.  I am trying to be calm.  I did my meditation today.  Hope you are well, friend.

xo RM

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RealMe

Had trouble getting to sleep last night and waaaay overslept this morning.  Tremors in hands and voice. Tinnitus is moderate.  Stomach is better.  Anxiety is improved.  Didn't do much today, just kept calm, played on the computer.

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Fontman82

Hey RM,

 

How are things now? sometimes all you can do is do nothing and hold it together. Good to hear at least your anxiety has improved :) 

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RealMe

 I found measuring dosages to be a lot easier when I changed to liquid. I have been tapering from fluoxetine liquid for some months now, and I can attest to the experience of tapering getting more prickly in the lesser amounts.  I was up to 80 mg of prozac and was on it for over 20 years, way long after I had gained over 60 lbs. and way long after it stopped having any good effects.  Then I was prescribed other combinations of ADs until some really difficult side effects showed up, like diarrhea, dystonia, tremors, forgetfulness, blunted emotions, and tinnitus to name a few.

 

I have trouble with dark, depressing thoughts and brain fog especially in the mornings, lethargy, anxiety, tinnitus, dystonia, tremors especially in my hands, occasional stomach distress, anhedonia, crying, and social isolation; but every single symptom has improved.  I lost the 60 pounds, and even my hair is shiny again.  The symptoms flare up in waves and sometimes seem to disappear only to return with a vengeance; but the overall picture is one of general improvement, especially if I look at my behavior.  I force myself to do things that healthy people do, and that really helps me.  I tend to over-react emotionally to things, but I am starting to feel genuine emotions instead of that blunted, flat emotion I had on ADs.  Before I went to "psychiatry land," I had a tendency to either over-react or to run away from feelings.  So that is something I will have to work on even after withdrawal.

 

Journaling symptoms and learning from the moderators.  Slow and steady.  I find the thread on coping with symptoms very helpful.

RM

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RealMe
5 hours ago, Fontman82 said:

Hey RM,

 

How are things now? sometimes all you can do is do nothing and hold it together. Good to hear at least your anxiety has improved :) 

Today is better.  I just got back from a walk on the beach.  My cousin is coming over for a visit.  I'm going to take a shower.  Things are looking up.  How are you, Fontman82?

xo RM

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RealMe

For the sake of accurate journalling of symptoms, I'm reporting that it has been two weeks since my most recent 10% taper.  I see very little stabilizing going on.  Not that I've regressed to the early days of tapering, but I do need to hang on.  I'm not considering an updose, just maintaining till some calm occurs.  I often think that I would be almost normal if the tinnitus would let up; but even when it does, I still depress.  The mornings are the worst.  I'm searching for coping ideas, especially for the morning dreadfulness.  I ordered a new type of magnesium.  Maybe that will help.  Maybe tomorrow will be better.  Hope everyone is doing well.

RM

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RealMe

Today is a window.  Feeling grateful.

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Rosetta

So happy for you, RM!

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wantrelief

Wonderful news, RM....it sounds like you had been struggling lately so this is extra good to hear!  

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Carmie
8 hours ago, RealMe said:

Today is a window.  Feeling grateful.

 

Yay! RealMe, 

 

Hope you have many more of those, and when you are in waves it really is good to look back at the windows and know they will come again. 

 

Sending hugs🤗

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RealMe

I have been consistent with my behavioral changes even through the waves.  I need to learn how to comfort myself without drugs.  Hard to believe I couldn't understand that concept for all those years on ADs.  I've been meditating, taking walks, avoiding stress as much as reasonably possible, eating healthy (no sugar or processed foods, limited meat and fat, increased fruit and vegetables) and forcing myself to socialize.  I go to bed at about the same time every night.  I've been learning everything I can about my situation.

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RealMe

Update:  It took me a little more than 3 weeks to stabilize from my last 10% taper.  So I waited another week, then made a 5% taper last night.  It's true for me that I need to go slower as I reach smaller amounts.  It has taken a year to get to this point, but I am so glad to report that the advice on this forum is invaluable to anyone who is trying to safely withdraw from ADs.  When I started, I feared I was on them too long and was too old to ever see a psychotropic drug-free existence in my life.  I am down to .58mL of liquid fluoxetine, and I can report so much progress.  I have some disturbing symptoms which I am learning to cope with, but other severe symptoms have improved or disappeared.  The disappearance of suicidal ideation is the most significant one, of course.  It was a constant for such a long time; then it became frequent; then I would have respites; and now it is a bad memory.  Self destructive or fearful thoughts still do occur, but I can push them away or replace them with techniques I've learned here.  Some of the most important ones came to me from Ali and Baroquep who advise keeping a positive attitude and not sit around ruminating.  There are so many good ideas that help on this forum if you look for them, not just from the mods like Chessiecat, Alto, Gridley, et al. but from all of the survivors who share how to cope and restore your mind and body to its "factory settings."  I don't want to sound like I have it made, but today I feel normal and happy.

Healing thoughts to all survivors.  I won't even try to name all my new friends here.  You know who you are! :)

xo RM

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Altostrata

Thank you for that lovely update, RealMe.

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wantrelief
23 hours ago, RealMe said:

today I feel normal and happy

Wow, RM....this sounds wonderful - so happy for you and all of the progress you have made!

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RealMe

Update:  Longest window I have had in a year and best (most normal) I've felt in many years.  I am habituating to tinnitus and having some better days with that.  When the days are more difficult, I have been stronger in riding them out.  I still sleep too late in the morning and have brain fog, but I am not beating myself up over it because it is much better and because I'm not avoiding any responsibilities by sleeping late.  In the fall when I have my granddaughters in the mornings again and want to substitute teach from time to time, I will try to change my clock.  For now, I'm just going with the flow of starting my days later than I would like.  My appetite is normal, not craving fats and carbs, not eating processed stuff, drinking water for a change, cutting way back on coffee (just 4 level teaspoons of instant coffee per day with sweet & low), no other "diet" foods.  I've been walking almost every day and meditating every single day.  I'm reading and enjoying a book called Presence by Cuddy which was recommended by Ogres from this forum.  Unbelievably, I've actually been cleaning the house a little and weeding in the garden.  Seriously, this is phenomenal.  I can remember wanting to do things I'm doing now but not being able to summon the energy or motivation.  I started off very, very slowly doing things just a little regardless of how I felt.  Sometimes I would just walk to the end of the driveway and would be exhausted.  I say this to encourage anyone who knows that heavy, overwhelming, scary feeling.  I socialize now and then and stay away from anything or anyone who triggers me (not their fault--it's not you; it's me.).  I just made another 10% cut, larger cut than last one at 5%.  I usually do not feel it for a few days, so I will soon find out whether or not I need to slow down to 5% again.  It is such a temptation to cut too much too fast.  My experience and what I've learned here show that slow and steady is the easiest and safest way to become free of ADs and their side effects.  Hope and fond wishes to my fellow survivors!

xo RM

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wantrelief

This is a fabulous update, RM - I am so happy for you!  It is wonderful to hear you have habituated more to the tinnitus as I know that has been really challenging for you.  Your strategy for starting off just doing a little bit of things is helpful for me.  You are doing great, RM!

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Tarheel109

Yessss! Great news! So glad that you’re feeling well.

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Ogres

Happy for you, RealMe! Great update

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Carmie

What a wonderful update RealMe, 

 

I’m so happy for you. I have to say though that sometimes when it comes to socialising though the trigger may not always be you, it could well be other people as well. 

 

I’ve had to deal with a lot of narcissistic abuse all my life but didn’t actually know what was going on. Over the last year though I’ve researched it n everything is so clear to me. My eyes are opened. I have lots of beautiful friends though n now I’m spending more time in company with people with beautiful hearts. 

 

Enjoy your window n make lots of happy memories💚

 

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Marmot

Wonderful to hear that you are having such a good window RealMe! 

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RealMe

Thank you for checking in on me, Marmot, Ogres, WantRelief, Tarheel, Carmie, Rosetta. Still doing ok. Ups and downs but compared to last year's H----, I'm doing fine.  Hugs and healing to all of you!

xo RM

 

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Rosetta

Great news!

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Carmie
On 8/13/2018 at 12:44 PM, RealMe said:

Thank you for checking in on me, Marmot, Ogres, WantRelief, Tarheel, Carmie, Rosetta. Still doing ok. Ups and downs but compared to last year's H----, I'm doing fine.  Hugs and healing to all of you!

xo RM

 

 

Hi Realme, 

 

So glad that you’re doing much better than last year. One step at a time, hey.

 

Sending hugs🤗

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RealMe

I am on vacation with family.  I can't believe how much alone time means to my disposition.  Too many people and too much stimulation make me very nervous.  I have to learn how to keep cool and calm in a family group.  I don't know why they think I'm the one in charge of problems.  Last year I couldn't even think, was totally negative and slept most of the time.  Things are definitely better.  I'm learning to cope with my new normal.  Finally finished reading Presence, and so I will adopt some power poses. Hope all my survivor friends are doing well.

xo RM

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Carmie

Hi @RealMe

 

Yes, it’s wonderful to have some alone time. I’m a people person n I have no problem being around people but I crave lots of alone time too. When withdrawals are bad one doesn’t really want to be around people either, but at the same time it can be a good distraction too. I guess it’s all about balance. 

 

I think the people thing has a lot to do with personality types as well as withdrawals. I don’t know if you’ve ever done the Myers Briggs personality test, but I’m an ENFP which is an extroverted personality type, but the one extroverted type that needs a lot of time on their own as well. 

 

It’s good to hear you’re coping with your new normal. This journey is extremely hard. 

 

Here’s to taking each moment as it comes 💚

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Ogres

Nice to hear from you, RealMe! I too feel overwhelmed when spending too much time with other people. Need some time to re-charge. Especially, when in WD.

All the best

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RealMe
On 8/27/2018 at 6:59 AM, Ogres said:

Nice to hear from you, RealMe! I too feel overwhelmed when spending too much time with other people. Need some time to re-charge. Especially, when in WD.

All the best

Hi Ogres,

Thanks for checking in!  Hope you are doing well.  What are you reading lately?  Someone recommended Full Catastrophic Living.  I'm going to pick it up tomorrow.

xo RM

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Rosetta

I glad that you have seen progress.  Oh, yes, alone time is very, very important.  Quiet, peace, and alone time!!

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Ogres
On 9/6/2018 at 1:04 AM, RealMe said:

Hi Ogres,

Thanks for checking in!  Hope you are doing well.  What are you reading lately?  Someone recommended Full Catastrophic Living.  I'm going to pick it up tomorrow.

xo RM

Hi RealMe, thanks for asking. I'm currently reading 'Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst' by R Sapolski. Very interesting and detailed read, about human brain, hormons, genes and interaction with external environment. 

Please let me know if your book is interesting. 

Hope all is well. Best wishes 

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Carmie

Hi RealMe, 

 

How are you doing? Are you still feeling overwhelmed being around people?

 

Hope you’ve managed to have a fairly good day. Our good days are withdrawal normal days. Yes, everyone on this site would understand that. We are always in withdrawals but it’s just the intensity of them. Even in windows we have withdrawals but we’ve come to some kind of baseline.

 

One moment at a time and continue looking forward to our recovery one of these days.

 

Wishing you some sunshine☀️☀️

 

 

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RealMe
On 9/9/2018 at 3:45 PM, Ogres said:

Please let me know if your book is interesting. 

Hi Ogres,

I haven't gotten into it yet.  I've been more physical and spending less time on the couch.  Last year I couldn't get off the couch and could hardly get up the energy or motivation to do anything but sleep, cry and surf the computer.  Thank goodness I am getting better.  I've been walking almost every day.  We went on vacation, and I did a lot of bicycling as well as walking.  I had some difficulty with crowd control a couple of times, but made it through.  Now that it's cloudy and rainy and cooler, I miss the sunny days a lot.  I need sunshine.  I've been very busy with grandchildren and the start of a new school year.  I subbed one day, and it was a very good experience.  Hope you are well.  Are you still with the same gf?

xo RM

 

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wantrelief

You sound so good, RM!  How wonderful to be able to see your improvements from how you were last year to now.  I hope to be able to report the same at some point.

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Ogres
11 hours ago, RealMe said:

Hi Ogres,

I haven't gotten into it yet.  I've been more physical and spending less time on the couch.  Last year I couldn't get off the couch and could hardly get up the energy or motivation to do anything but sleep, cry and surf the computer.  Thank goodness I am getting better.  I've been walking almost every day.  We went on vacation, and I did a lot of bicycling as well as walking.  I had some difficulty with crowd control a couple of times, but made it through.  Now that it's cloudy and rainy and cooler, I miss the sunny days a lot.  I need sunshine.  I've been very busy with grandchildren and the start of a new school year.  I subbed one day, and it was a very good experience.  Hope you are well.  Are you still with the same gf?

xo RM

 

Hi RealMe,

glad to hear from you and happy that you're recovering more and more! Better days are yet to come, keep walking (figuratively and literally)! 

I thought I was breaking up with my GF for good a month ago, but we're back together. My private life is anything but stable, which doesn't help when you're in WD :).

It's now been 2 years since I quit ADs, but I have been hesitant to post an update as it looked like I had done several steps back in my recovery journey. Which was partly my fault. There were too much (too much for a person recovering from ADs) travelling, going out, eating unhealthily, drinking, etc during past summer. plus unhealthy relationships with my GF. Eventually it caused severe insomnia with several sleepless nights in a row and then I caught a cold. All of my senses were overstimulated and my head was a total mess. It was very tough indeed. A healthy brain would use sleep to properly process information, events, feelings, etc., but in my case each and every day after no sleep added more and more unprocessed bits, making my head spin.  

But luckily, I survived and back with my GF. We're going to give it another shot :)

Best wishes to you, my friend     

 

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RealMe
On 9/14/2018 at 11:27 AM, Ogres said:

There were too much (too much for a person recovering from ADs) travelling, going out, eating unhealthily, drinking, etc during past summer. plus unhealthy relationships with my GF.

Hi Ogres,

I'm sorry you are going through this.  What can we do to help you cope with this pattern?  I know you like being strong, and I am pulling for you!  Hope your gf is healthy and helpful!

xo RM

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RealMe
On 9/14/2018 at 12:44 AM, wantrelief said:

 I hope to be able to report the same at some point.

Hi Wantrelief,

I see that you are still doing your slow tapers and going in the right direction!  You have always been so encouraging to me, and I appreciate you very much.  Some day soon we will be completely off these brain altering chemicals!  There have been plenty of quack practices in medical history, and I'm sure people will eventually realize that drugs are not necessary nearly as often as pharmaceutical companies will have us believe!  Thank you for keeping in touch, dear wantrelief!

xo,

RM

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