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Isabellax: Introduction of myself


Isabellax

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Hello everyone,

It' s my first post after many months reading other stories. I 'm 29 yo living in London and I went cold turkey on prozac 20mg and concerta 18mg 6 months ago.

I 've been taking concerta for the last 2 years for adult adhd (I really don't think it's a correct diagnosis) and I 've been taking prozac for 4 year and I have tried other antidepressants 3 years prior to start

prozac but nothing worked. Prozac was like a miracle drug for me and I really felt it helped. Unfortunatelly I never worked on myself during tht period to change lifestyle or help myself to recover easier.

I was drinking quite a lot and changing psychiatrists because I felt noone was helping me to find the root of my problems.

I know it was a terrible idea to go cold turkey but I was feeling stuck and nothing good was happening in my life. I have lost my job, I was scared to look for another one and sth had to change.

Once I stopped all medication I was feeling great for a month, I managed to find an internship and go back to work after 1,5 yr off but then terrible withdrawal symptoms started. More or less everything that I read in other posts (anxiety, terrible depression, tremor, insomnia, headaches,etc.). I managed to stay in my new job although I want to quit every day and cry in the bathroom. I need the money.

I had what is described here as periods of windows/waves but the last 2 months I have no good days but the bad ones are not as bad as at the beggining of withdrawal but I don't see any improvement either

I changed diet/lifestyle, I work out daily, meditate and I do everything to support healing.

Now that I 'm on my 6th month of withdrawal I just want to ask for some advice on how would I know if I still experience withdrawal or if I have a kind of Situational Depression?

I keep thinking that I don't like my job and career path I have chosen when on medications, I don't like life in London since I came from a sunny Mediterenean country and I never managed to make good friends here or find a stable partner.

Any input would be much appreciated :)

February 2012: Prozac 60mg

August 2015: Concerta 36mg

March 2016: Concerta reduced to 18mg

September 2016: Prozac lowered to 20mg

September 2017: cold turkey both Prozac and Concerta

 

Now: experiencing severe withdrawal from both medications

 

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  • Moderator

Hello, Isabellax and welcome to SA,

 

To give members the best information, we ask them to summarize their medication history in a signature -- drugs, doses, dates, and discontinuations & reinstatements, in the last 12-24 months particularly.
  • 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. 
  • Please leave out symptoms and diagnoses. 
  • A list is easier to understand than one or multiple paragraphs. 
  • Link to Account Settings – Create or Edit a signature.

The symptoms you listed are typical of withdrawal.  That, combined with the fact that you cold-turkeyed two medications, lead me to think what you are experiencing is withdrawal and not situational depression or, as pdocs like to say, "return of the underlying condition."  These links give more detail:

 

This post and Is it withdrawal or relapse?

 

When we take medications, the CNS (central nervous system) responds by making changes over the months and years we take the drug(s). When the medication is discontinued, the CNS has to undo all the changes it made. Rebuilding the neurotransmitter production and reactivating the receptor and transporter cells takes time -- during that rebuilding process symptoms occur.  Some people have found the information and explanations at these links helpful:
 
 
Please be aware that sometime withdrawal symptoms don't appear immediately after a too-fast taper or cold-turkey.  This would explain your one-month grace period after CT.
 
Many members have gotten relief from the techniques in these two links:
 
We don't recommend a lot of supplements on SA, as many members report being sensitive to them due to our over-reactive nervous systems, but two supplements that we do recommend are magnesium and omega 3 (fish oil). Many people find these to be calming to the nervous system. 

 

Please research all supplements first and only add in one at a time and at a low dose in case you do experience problems.
 
This is your introduction topic -- the place for you to ask questions, record symptoms, share your progress, and connect with other members of the SA community. I hope you'll find the information in the SA forums helpful for your situation. I'm sorry that you are in the position that you need the information, but I am glad that you found us.

 

 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

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 Jan. 6, 2023: 2.5mg

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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Hi Gridley,

 

Thank you for the useful information. I have changed my signature to include as much info as possibke according to guidelines.

I have gone through the links you posted. It's just very hard to disdinguish where the withdrawal ends and where depression symptomsstart due to life circumstances.

I 'm just scared that tis is the new norm. Maybe 6 months is not a long time for withdrawal symptoms to go away but seems so long to me and I begin to lose hope.

I 'm afraid I never addressed the reasons that made me depressed and didn't create a stable happy environment around me that could help me feel "normal" again or at least not as sad and

confused as I am now.

February 2012: Prozac 60mg

August 2015: Concerta 36mg

March 2016: Concerta reduced to 18mg

September 2016: Prozac lowered to 20mg

September 2017: cold turkey both Prozac and Concerta

 

Now: experiencing severe withdrawal from both medications

 

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  • Moderator

Isabellax,

 

I sympathize with your confusion about withdrawal vs. depression. We're told by doctors that we are broken and need pills to fix us.  I'll repeat, your symptoms sound like withdrawal, not depression.  

 

 It is not too late to create a stable environment.  In fact, many members have been motivated by withdrawal (and its difficulties) to finally do the work on themselves they avoided earlier.  Take a look at the non-drug coping skills link I sent you before.  Try a few.  It may take some time but stick with it.  Really, this is a great opportunity to work on yourself--withdrawal, miserable as it is, can be a great motivator when you have no other choice.  

 

I know six months seems like a long time for WD symptoms to go away when you're in the middle of it.  It may go on longer.  There will be windows and waves, good days and bad.  I'm much better than I was a year ago.  I'm better today than I was two months ago.  Then I'll have a bad spell.  You just have to ride it out.  This is not your new norm--it will pass.  Unfortunately, no one can say when, only that it will happen.  Apace, one of our moderators, posted this response to a member who was sad and confused about the amount of time withdrawal could last.  I think you'll find it helpful:

 

"I think the best answer anyone can give you is that over time the brain will return to homeostasis and healing will occur.  How long that will take  and what that means when taking a healing brain along with the passage of time and mixing it all up is anyone's guess.  The success stories, while they did take more time (in most cases) than any of us would like, seem to indicate that there is substantial healing and a lot of people come out "on the other side" feeling better about life and themselves than they did either before or during the use of the drugs.

 

"It would be misleading and, frankly, unethical for me to tell you "don't worry -- you'll be fine in x months."  The reality, as you already know, is frequently different.  Having said that there are plenty of people who (i) come off with no problem or (ii) come off and see fairly rapid recovery.  My personal experience, however, is that most of the people that find their way to SA have been hit harder than that and are in a situation that is going to take time to repair.  I'm sure there are plenty of people on this site who came on scared, had a fairly quick recovery, and moved on.  There's no other way in my mind to explain all of the "sub-10 post" people (after all, we are a great site -- who would want to leave? ).  But the "usual suspects" and a lot of the new people who have recently joined are going to be at this for a lot longer and need to think in terms of years as opposed to months or weeks.  

 

"But, at the end of the day, the people who have been doing this for a long time tell us that healing will happen and we have no reason to doubt that.  The Success Stories bear that out as well and they also indicate that even those among us who are really sick and dealing with hellacious symptoms will, in the long run, see healing and recovery."  
 
You will make it, Isabellax.
 
Best,
Gridley

 

I hope that helps even though I know it's scary and not the answer you want to hear.

 

 

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 Jan. 6, 2023: 2.5mg

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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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi All,

I 'm seeking out some advice from people who have experienced something similar. I 'm marking my 6 months off my AD and stimulant and started experiencing some good days lately.

I 'm just terified when I feel a bit happy cause it's such an unknown emotion for me after years of suffering with depression and medication that I automatically find myself to try thing something negative/bad so as the familiar sad emotion come back. I know it might sound crazy but I have genuine fear of feeling ok/happy again and I end up subotaging myself. I still cannot control all the emotions I 'm experiencing the last 6 months. I would appreciate someone's advice on that :)

 

Thanks

February 2012: Prozac 60mg

August 2015: Concerta 36mg

March 2016: Concerta reduced to 18mg

September 2016: Prozac lowered to 20mg

September 2017: cold turkey both Prozac and Concerta

 

Now: experiencing severe withdrawal from both medications

 

Link to comment

That gives me some hope. I’m sure someone can help you. I’d say embrace those moments. 

 

2001 Remeron , Celexa, prozac a week on lithium. 

2014 went off effexor and trazadone in 3 weeks. 

2014 zoloft (hyper reaction) put on effexor 75 mg. Was stable until 2017 

2017  Trazadone 50 mg (June) Effexor to 113 mg (2 weeks) Effexor 150 mg for a month . Took 75 mg until November. . Lithium 10 days, Lamactil 10 day  aug-nov15 ativan

October : Prozac bridge to get off 75 mg of effexor Used 10 mg of prozac. Stopped prozac 3 wk 

Dec 6, 7 Upped trazadone from 50 to 100 mg Did it for 3 days Stopped it

Dec 7 , Dec 8 Took prozac again 0.1 , 0.1, 0.6 stopped it

Dec 11 and Dec 12 upped it to 100 again

Dec 15 , 16,17 went back to 50 mg of trazadone

December 18 Began 3 beads of effexor  Dec 25 began 5 beads of effexor take 10 mg of omneprazole daily

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus

You may find this topic helpful:

 

Neuro Emotions

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions. 

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

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

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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10 hours ago, Downbutnotout said:

That gives me some hope. I’m sure someone can help you. I’d say embrace those moments. 

Yes there is hope Downbutnotout,

I wqs suicidal for 2 months after quitting (cold turkey 2 medication) and God knows how I managed to not reinstate although went 2 times back to psychiatrist got prescriptions but never

fulfilled them. It feels like a miracle that I 'm stabilizing some days. But with all emotions coming back and the dread I 'm feeling it's hard to embrace moments of happiness.

Stay strong in your recovery journey :)

February 2012: Prozac 60mg

August 2015: Concerta 36mg

March 2016: Concerta reduced to 18mg

September 2016: Prozac lowered to 20mg

September 2017: cold turkey both Prozac and Concerta

 

Now: experiencing severe withdrawal from both medications

 

Link to comment
9 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

You may find this topic helpful:

 

Neuro Emotions

Thanks a lot for your reply ChessieCat. The topic was helpful understanding the dread that poeple feel during withdrawal and how hard it is to let other emotions (like joy in my case) to

be present in your life. I guess with time it should be easier to deal with emotions.

If anyone gas experienced someting similar please share your story. I feel sometimes I 'm subotaging my so-awaited recovery cause withdrawal lasts sooo long and you become "used" to sufferign somehow.

February 2012: Prozac 60mg

August 2015: Concerta 36mg

March 2016: Concerta reduced to 18mg

September 2016: Prozac lowered to 20mg

September 2017: cold turkey both Prozac and Concerta

 

Now: experiencing severe withdrawal from both medications

 

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

We suggest that members visit other members' Intro topics.  Members read other members' experiences and then they can support and encourage each other.

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions. 

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

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

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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3 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

We suggest that members visit other members' Intro topics.  Members read other members' experiences and then they can support and encourage each other.

 

Thanks for reminding me ChessieCat. Sometimes I feel that I don't have anything of value to add so it's only few times I wrote to people when I felt I can add value.

There are more people reading than writting here and some of them over-writting and are really trapped into negativity and attention seeeking. We are al here to heal but some of us use

this forum cosciously cause it can really work against you sometime. It's how I feel .Everything in moderation :)

February 2012: Prozac 60mg

August 2015: Concerta 36mg

March 2016: Concerta reduced to 18mg

September 2016: Prozac lowered to 20mg

September 2017: cold turkey both Prozac and Concerta

 

Now: experiencing severe withdrawal from both medications

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus
7 hours ago, Isabellax said:

There are more people reading than writting here

 

It's important to remember that the members are experiencing their own withdrawal issues.

 

7 hours ago, Isabellax said:

some of them over-writting

 

This can be part of their way of coping.

 

7 hours ago, Isabellax said:

really trapped into negativity

 

This can be a withdrawal symptom or caused by experiencing difficulties with their tapering.  It may also be the type of personality that person has.  It can be hard to tell the difference.

 

 

There are many members here that do not have any support in real life and they communicate with other members here and support each other.

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions. 

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

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

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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1 hour ago, ChessieCat said:

 

It's important to remember that the members are experiencing their own withdrawal issues.

 

 

This can be part of their way of coping.

 

 

This can be a withdrawal symptom or caused by experiencing difficulties with their tapering.  It may also be the type of personality that person has.  It can be hard to tell the difference.

 

 

There are many members here that do not have any support in real life and they communicate with other members here and support each other.

 

Hi ChessieCat,

 

I just realised that I wrote that down trapped into my own negativity as I was having a realy bad day. I became very judgemental and reactive to everything.

That's my coping mecanism I guess

You are absolutely right in what you said. Some people don't have close familly,friends or relatives for support. I used to be very sensitive to others feelings and my withdrawal makes me detached many times.

I shouldn't have judged and thanks for making me see my mistake :)

It's morning in London so I would have to say have a good day :)

February 2012: Prozac 60mg

August 2015: Concerta 36mg

March 2016: Concerta reduced to 18mg

September 2016: Prozac lowered to 20mg

September 2017: cold turkey both Prozac and Concerta

 

Now: experiencing severe withdrawal from both medications

 

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  • Moderator Emeritus
6 minutes ago, Isabellax said:

It's morning in London so I would have to say have a good day :)

 

It's late evening here and I am off to bed, so I would have to say have a good night! ;)

Please DO NOT TAG me - thank you

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.  I provide information and make suggestions. 

  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:    (6 year taper)      0mg Pristiq      on 13th November 2021

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

Post 0 updates start here    My tapering program     My Intro (goes to tapering graph)

 VIDEO:   Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome and its Management

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