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Hopper: Fluoxetine withdrawal


Hopper

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Hello all, 

 

I came across this site while in search of support groups for antidepressant withdrawal. It’s wonderful to find such a similar-minded and accepting community. Thank you for allowing me to join you.

 

My memory re: antidepressants is a little hazy, primarily because I feel so “checked out” when it comes to my medical history (I hate everything to do with meds; it makes me feel like I’m at the mercy of my doctor and I’m not in control of my own body/mind) - but I'll try my best.

 

I was first put on antidepressants (Lexapro) at the age of 16 for bulimia, depression and binge-eating. I did very well on it for about 1 year, maybe slightly longer, and then I moved away from home and started university. I quit the antidepressants on my own, only to suffer a rebound effect for the next 1.5 years. 

 

This was back in 2008. At some point during this time, I think I may have taken leftover antidepressants (the ones I didn’t use because I quit my meds cold-turkey). It was a very confusing, chaotic time. Most of the time I didn’t want to live. I self-harmed, binged, threw up, hid in my room, refused to meet people. 

 

I was put on antidepressants again (Fluoxetine) in 2012, when I saw my GP and a school counselor for bulimia. This time it went up to 60mg/day (instead of 20mg/day previously). I stayed at this dose for around 2 years, maybe more. I don’t remember much. 

 

**** hit the fan when I moved countries again, and this time I tried quitting my meds again. I think I tapered off, but there wasn’t any strategy to it. Sometimes I forgot to take my meds, sometimes I just didn’t care enough to take them. Fell into depression, bulimia, self-harm again, this time with the added side career of smoking cigarettes. I seriously considered suicide. 

 

I was put on antidepressants again (Fluoxetine, 60mg/day) in June 2016 (last year). Kept this up for a year, and began tapering off this May. I’ve been antidepressant-free since August 2017. 

 

I relate very much to the emotional spirals that have been mentioned in the thread here. I also struggle with obsessive thoughts. The worst part about this withdrawal phase is being afraid of my own mind. 

 

For all of September and October, I’ve done my best to deal with the feelings/thoughts that arise. In the last two weeks, however, part of me has just “checked out.” Since this withdrawal phase will likely continue for 6 months to a year, I reasoned that it's fine to drown my mind out with work and TV episodes online for now.

 

At some deeper level, I’m aware that this isn’t the best way to go about it. At some point, I'd like to approach it in a healthier way. 

 

Thank you all for letting me be here. Reading all your stories help. 

Oct 2007 - Jan 2009: Prozac 20mg (quit cold-turkey)

Feb 2012 - Jun 2015: Prozac 60mg (tapered in rehab) 

Jun 2016 - Aug 2017: Prozac 60mg (tapered over 4 months)

Drug-free since August 2017.

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Hopper: Fluoxetine withdrawal
  • Administrator

Welcome, Hopper.

 

Since you've seen our emotional spirals topic, you're in a good position to learn to manage your withdrawal symptoms and whatever emotional symptoms brought you to psychiatric drugs. You'll see many helpful topics in our Symptoms and Self-Care forum, and a lot of support for what you're going through.

 

How did you taper off fluoxetine? Did you have more distinct withdrawal symptoms before? How have they changed?

 

Many people do better with fish oil and magnesium supplements, see


http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/36-king-of-supplements-omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil/

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1300-magnesium-natures-calcium-channel-blocker/

 

A lot of people find them helpful. 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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  • Moderator

Welcome, also, from me, Hopper,

 

We ask all members to create a drug signature.  Please use the following format:

 

A request: Would you summarize your history in a signature - ALL drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements, in the last 12-24 months particularly?

  • Please leave out symptoms and diagnoses.
  • A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs. 
  • Any drugs prior to 24 months ago can just be listed with start and stop years.
  • Please use actual dates or approximate dates (mid-June, Late October) rather than relative time frames (last week, 3 months ago)
  • Spell out months, e.g. "October" or "Oct."; 9/1/2016 can be interpreted as Jan. 9, 2016 or Sept. 1, 2016.
  • Link to Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.

 

This is your own Introduction topic where you can ask questions and journal your progress.

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 to 1.875mg 1986-2020, two CT's and reinstatements

Nov. 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover to 18.75mg Valium

Feb. 2021, begin 10%/4 week taper.   

March 22, 2022: hold at 4.8mg and shift to Imipramine taper

Aug. 5, 2022: shift back to Valium taper.  

Current dose as of Dec. 2, 2022: 2.6mg

Taper is 86% complete.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan-Sept 2016 tapered to 16mg.  

Held until Aug 2021, tapered for 4 weeks to 14.4mg

March 22, 2022: Begin 10%/4 week taper.  Current dose as of Aug. 5: 9.5mg 

Aug. 5, 2022: hold at 9.5 and shift to Valium taper

Taper is 87% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega-3, 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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