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Karmoh: mind-voice and I


Karmoh

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Hi,

this is long, but I enjoyed writing it.

 

As a boy I was quiet and sensitive, never asked for much, never got much. I lived in constant dread, not so much from family violence but from the world around me, I struggled to cope, I wasn’t shown any compassion or given the tools to help, just a bang on the ear and told to shut up, so at 7yrs old I switched off, totally switched off and observed the world around me. I systematically created an alter ego.  An amazing set of personality traits that got me through the days, weeks & years. The mental shaping that took place was phenomenal, I created such a diverse set of illogically triggers and personality traits that it was easier to carry on acting than attempt to unwind the neural paths and begin building a new life

 

I could tell you how a quiet, sensitive boy, grew into a drunk, violent tyrant with suicidal tendencies, but that’s not what this is about. We’re here because I found a way out…

 

I had been in a deep depression since childhood, I was 53 when I went to the doctor for help with my alcohol abuse, and he was ok, told me that the signs were there… I was suffering from a deep depression, but I had normalised it to get through and drank to hide from my emotions, he said that it is not unusual for people to go through life without seeking help. I came away with an optimistic wow! Was that all there was to it, a 6-month script for Effexor XR 150 mg and a new beginning.

 

April 2018 - Three dumbed down, libido-less years later…

Quite by accident, I rediscovered something, something I had totally forgotten about. As a 7-year-old, I discovered that if I placed my hands flat on a table top, closed my eyes, and relaxed. Soon my fingers and palms would begin to flow along with my breathing, but interestingly the table would undulate (not physically) in tune with my body. This was a child’s subtle way of getting away from the turmoil, but in reality, it dawned that it was my first go at meditating, but it took over 46 years to recognise.

 

As I sat there that day five months ago, something clicked this was a way out a simple yet effective way. Sitting there without using thoughts or mental images, there is no way to even recognise that my hands were touching some other separate thing called a table. Without the thoughts, hard, smooth, or pressure appearing, there is no way to even describe what I was feeling or know what they are just raw senses that carry no conceptual information.  The table does not whisper that it is hard or smooth or your hands do not whisper sensations are appearing.  All of these are just thoughts.  Without these thoughts, there is only life itself, without separation between the hands doing the touching and the table being touched.  In fact, without thoughts or mental images, there is no way to know that I exist as something separate and apart from this world.

 

Oh my, what a revelation, I consulted my wife, yes I am married, with children and hold down a successful career, but I had no life balance, I am either working flat out, comatose through alcohol or a wild party animal. The happy, sad clown, with a nasty alter ego. She shrugged, and who could blame her.

 

The very next morning I got up a 5:30am and meditated, it was a delight. That day five months ago I gave up alcohol for good. After two or three weeks of misery, I really found that I could stop drinking, why because it was my choice and nobody else’s.

 

But… I was on the clichéd health and wellness train, and for a month or two was happy, I was still taking the “wonderful” Effexor XR, but I had my second epiphany, I realised I was substituting my new found wellbeing lifestyle for the partying and alcoholic lifestyle, I was still a junkie. I had begun this new journey, how I had taught myself all those years ago to build a façade, an alter ego that I wanted people to see, I was still that fearful child acting like an adult.

 

I had read that I needed to make my mind still, to overcome the destructive thoughts, but believe me it won’t be still. I realised this is not meditation, it is an idea or desire to be calm, my mind was disturbed enough, and there I was making it worse by wanting to make it calm. It’s just like depression. The more we desire to calm the more disturbed the mind becomes, until we just give up. We end up fighting with our minds all the time. Oh my, this was the depression, the falsehood of curing the depression with alcohol and drugs.

 

I dropped the yoga classes and meditation retreats.

 

I still got up every morning at 5:30am did some basic stretching, and just sat on the floor and meditated not any fancy whizz bang modern stuff a very simple practice

 

I simply asked my thoughts WTF.

 

As usual, we (the mind-voice and I) started fighting because the mind-voice believed I was trying to calm him down, right away in the first minute he would come to bother me. As soon as I breathed in, mind-voice would wander off looking for a subject I had taught him, drinking, fighting, good times, bad times, and self-pity. For decades his job was done, I would take the bait. I would dwell on them entertain them. But sitting quietly I identified the problem, it’s right there, from the very wanting of these thoughts to entertain me, I saw my mind-voice is simply behaving according to its conditioning, it’s naturally throwing suggestions at me like fishing hooks, and if I take the bait, off I would go.

 

I simply stopped taking the bait. The mind-voice was google, it didn’t know any better, simply suggesting all kinds of things. I smiled at the suggestions but didn’t bite, the mind would tempt me with something else that worked before, I would smile, on and on we’d go. We blame our mind-voice but there is no obsession with the mind-voice it chatters and plays around like a child. It’s not harmful unless we take the bait and get obsessed with it's suggestions.

 

That’s was the real cause of my troubles.

 

That Buddha bloke taught to look within. “Look within, don’t look outwards.” This is all it takes, a simple understanding.

 

When I sat, I just sat, not looking for the truth, I became aware of the thoughts that destroyed me, but stopped entertaining them, the mind-voice became stronger wanting to know what he had done to offend me, hadn’t he guided me, fabricating a false world so that I could navigate life with ease.

 

I didn’t ignore him I just stopped playing along, this caused insight to pop-up, the mind-voice was changing his tactic, he began showing during the quiet spaces the workings of the mind, the language of the brain and the ways and means of thoughts themselves, there’s nothing special about any of them. They appear, hang about for a while, tempting me with suggestions, and then just disappear.

 

I began to see more clearly, if I held fast to things, imaginary or real, I will suffer. This is how depression, alcohol and drug abuse begin. I saw that body and mind are merely the way they are.

 

Now I don’t recommend this, but with Effexor XR, after 3 years I went cold turkey. Straight for the jugular, cut that bastard drug right off in his prime. Suffer, I sure did, head full of sand, flashes of electricity, night terrors, (if that’s lucid dreaming you can keep it). Sweating, anxiety, anger and sadness. Coming off this drug was worse than giving up a 40-year alcohol addiction.

 

I went on a normal healthy diet, did some gentle exercise, ignored the tantrums going on with my old mate, mind-voice.

 

For the first two weeks, I did take 5mg of Melatonin, an hour before bed. Stopped watching depressing news stories and violent movies and dramas, I deleted all social media, told friends and family if they wanted to talk, they knew where I was.

 

I read for pleasure, listen to music safely, music used to be a drinking binge trigger, an aid to deepen depression. Now it’s a pure joy, sure memories come up, I smile at the recognition and let it pass.

 

I switched my life around the hard way. By unleashing a talent that we all possess. You can’t buy it in any store or online. In actual fact, it’s free, and we use this talent every waking minute, of every single day. If you can discover something simple like I did, maybe you can turn this amazing power into one of the most powerful recovery tools!

The very same tool that has created your sadness and this disturbed world we live in, is the very same tool that allows us to exist.

 

The mind. Our one and only advisor... Give it enough scenarios and mind-voice will create the world you want. Mine was at the bottom of a glass.

 

I simply asked my thoughts WTF.

 

I am clean, sober and anti-depressant free. I think freely and openly, with no stress on the negatives that mind-voice likes to trick me with.

 

Ah! that mind-voice, he is quieter and seems more at peace than before. I smile at him, he smiles at me. Mind-Voice has never said why he liked me drinking or in depression, he just smiles and nods, as each day passes we are both better for it because you see, he was me.

 

Not for everyone, but that my story.

 

XX

 

 

 

Edited by ChessieCat
spelling and logic :) line spacing
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  • ChessieCat changed the title to Karmoh: mind-voice and I
  • Moderator
manymoretodays

Hi Karmoh,

And welcome aboard.

I enjoyed reading your story.

 

Could you please do a signature for us?

https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/18343-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

This is the portion you now can see below others posts(unless viewing on a phone device)

 

How are you doing today after your Effexor W/D(withdrawal)?

Any symptoms of note?

Dr. Glenmullen's withdrawal symptom check list

 

Here at survivingantidepressants we advocate for the most harm free reduction of medications possible
Why taper by 10% of my dosage*

 

It's possible that your nervous system is struggling a bit now to get back some more stability.   It can take some time. When we take medications, the CNS (central nervous system) responds by making changes over the months and years we take the drug. 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.   


What is withdrawal syndrome

One theory of antidepressant withdrawal syndrome

Brain remodeling 

 

Please let us know how we might help or support you at this time.

Love, peace, healing, and growth,

mmt

 

As this is a family friendly site, and also an open site on the world wide web(also may be used by the scientific community, to gather research information), we generally just ask members to use this thread Lalochezia! The cursing thread  when feeling the need to express emotions with profanities.  We know it can be tough, W/D.  Note: you need to be signed in to get to that thread.

 

 

Edited by manymoretodays
added lalochezia link, punctuation, elaboration

Started with psycho meds circa 1988 I think 27 or 28 total.

AD's, antpsychotics, antiseizure mood stabilizers. Lithium, lamictal ,benzos, and stimulants. Some med. for narcolepsy once(Provigil,) Gabapentin........probably more.  Ask me?......I probably was on it.  Haphazard W/D's by Dr. recommend or uneducated self.

10/2014- off Lexapro--had been on highest dose 10 mg. then 5 mg. for a couple of years, went from 5 mg. to 3 mg. liquid and then CT in hospital(voluntary).  I got out of the hospital on a combination of low dose adderal salts x1/day and trileptal 150mg. x2/day.

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!

 

3/21/2016---I did some unwise updosing of trileptal/oxcarbazepine with some stressful stuff......doubled the above dose x2 during this last wave but began liquifying again and on approximately 68mg. starting today.  11/12//2016 24 mg. oxcarbazepine  12/9/2016 off oxcarbazepine/trileptal!!!! :) optimistic  2016 December 9- completely off all medications!!!!!

Omega3's,EPA +DHA= 1800 mg/day. Magnesium complex, orally, diluted in a liter of H2O(that I can shake up.....it usually dissolves more completely as the water gets down to room temperature) and/or Epsom salt baths prn.   Vit. C, D3, and E.  B12, melatonin tapered to 1mg., and bioidentical hormones sublingually.  Trace mineral drops.  L-lysine.  L-methylfolate=400 mcg plus daily spinach. Totally ready for a good long window to hit soon and getting better strings of full days and partial days along the way.  Definite improvement overall since I first arrived on the SA survivor ship.  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

 

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  • Moderator
manymoretodays

Hi again Karmoh,

Feel free to look about the site as well.  You might enjoy reading and contributing further in our Finding Meaning section or in Symptoms and Self care forums.  I've linked you up to those areas.

 

This page now acts as your Introduction topic,  it's your introduction to the group. It also acts as a journal, so we can all follow and respond to your progress. Members may respond to your topic and give you support and encouragement.  Questions specific to your situation generally should go here as well.

 

L, P, H, and growth,

mmt

Edited by manymoretodays

Started with psycho meds circa 1988 I think 27 or 28 total.

AD's, antpsychotics, antiseizure mood stabilizers. Lithium, lamictal ,benzos, and stimulants. Some med. for narcolepsy once(Provigil,) Gabapentin........probably more.  Ask me?......I probably was on it.  Haphazard W/D's by Dr. recommend or uneducated self.

10/2014- off Lexapro--had been on highest dose 10 mg. then 5 mg. for a couple of years, went from 5 mg. to 3 mg. liquid and then CT in hospital(voluntary).  I got out of the hospital on a combination of low dose adderal salts x1/day and trileptal 150mg. x2/day.

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!

 

3/21/2016---I did some unwise updosing of trileptal/oxcarbazepine with some stressful stuff......doubled the above dose x2 during this last wave but began liquifying again and on approximately 68mg. starting today.  11/12//2016 24 mg. oxcarbazepine  12/9/2016 off oxcarbazepine/trileptal!!!! :) optimistic  2016 December 9- completely off all medications!!!!!

Omega3's,EPA +DHA= 1800 mg/day. Magnesium complex, orally, diluted in a liter of H2O(that I can shake up.....it usually dissolves more completely as the water gets down to room temperature) and/or Epsom salt baths prn.   Vit. C, D3, and E.  B12, melatonin tapered to 1mg., and bioidentical hormones sublingually.  Trace mineral drops.  L-lysine.  L-methylfolate=400 mcg plus daily spinach. Totally ready for a good long window to hit soon and getting better strings of full days and partial days along the way.  Definite improvement overall since I first arrived on the SA survivor ship.  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

 

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On 9/14/2018 at 6:24 PM, Karmoh said:

I simply asked my thoughts WTF.

 

 

 

 

Karmoh, thank you for this. We are not our thoughts. xo

💮Zoloft 50mg September 2015  💮September 2018 begin micro-taper  💮April 2019 25mg 💮April 2020 12.5 mg  💮August 8 mg  💮October 6 mg 

 

 

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  • 11 months later...

Thank you, Karmoh, for sharing this. I have been in inner war since being a child (my mortal appearal is 29 years young now). A thought by me: "Perceive the war, it will end; and start to play."

 

Nice to think about it in combination with the inscription on Charles Bukowski's gravestone: "Don't try."

 

C.

Medical history:
11/2015 - Duloxetin 30mg, 12/2015 - Duloxetin 60mg, 4/2016 - CT
8/2016 - Duloxetin 60mg, 2/2017 - Duloxetin 30mg, 4/2017 - CT
7/2017 - Duloxetin 60mg, 9/2017 - Duloxetin 30mg, 11/2017 - CT
3.5.2018 - Milnacipran 25mg, 10.5.2018 - Milnacipran 50mg, 20.5.2018 - Milnacipran 25mg, 24.5.2018 - CT and protracted WD

 

Supplements: none

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