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Tom37

Tom37: Lexapro taper

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Longestroadhome
4 hours ago, Tom37 said:

Ended up feeling better as yesterday went on. Still in this wave but seem to be on the other side of it now. Got about 5 hours sleep last night as while wasn’t feeling bad in bed just felt weird and can tell still this morning still in wave but feeling better than yesterday morning so hopefully in a few days out of it completely but then get scared that I am out of wave and how I feel now is my current baseline😩.....just wish I could got to bed and wake up knowing that I’m going to feel ‘normal’ everyday.

Yes, we do have to learn to deal with life without drugs as our buffer. For a long time I used alcohol to do this but am now three years sober. And remember, waves can be difficult but we can learn to ride them. If you can’t beat them get on them and ride in to shore! Make sure you do things during the day that nourish you. Things that bring joy. Have something to look forward to. Make some plans. If you have ever read Viktor Frankl’s story of how he survived the concentration camps you will know what I mean. It was having hope that got him through each day. Those who lost all hope usually succumbed quicker to death. 

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Lynnardgirl
On 3/3/2020 at 3:08 PM, Longestroadhome said:

Hi Tom, I saw your thread and felt led to jump in. I am a lexapro survivor too! 
I jumped off at 2mg 18 months ago. Wouldn’t recommend doing that but thank God it seems to have worked well for me.

 

Before I jumped off I had been stuck on 2mg for a long time. My withdrawal from 5mg down were the hardest in the entire journey. I never thought I would get off that stuff. The fear of withdrawing again was awful and I felt as though my life was never going to change. 
 

I started listening to a lot of speakers on changing your thinking. Dr Joe Dispenza and his Audible book, ‘The Placebo’ was the first. It helped me to see that a different mindset was needed by myself if I was ever going to get off antidepressants. I realised that my thoughts were producing FEAR which was then producing symptoms. Now I am not discrediting withdrawal symptoms....they are real, but often made much worse by the fear association that comes with them. I learned that by making changes to the way I think I can drastically reduce physical symptoms of anxiety. It sounds a bit New Age and off with the fairies and if you knew me in real life you would know that I am not sucked in by things like that easily. But I was desperate for help and a friend had told me about Joe Dispenza so I listened. Along with him I watched some YouTube videos by a lady called Byron Katie who offers a method she calls ‘ The Work’ to re analyse and change our thinking patterns. It is very simple. Eckhart Tolle is similar but he doesn’t really describe HOW to achieve peace as well as Byron Katie does. 
 

18 months down the track and I am doing pretty good. I still have bad days but don’t we all, but for the main I am pretty stable and enjoying my life. I still regularly have to watch my thinking, or over thinking as Eckhart says. It becomes an unhealthy cycle like a hamster on a wheel and thoughts lead to physical symptoms which again leads back to more negative thoughts. Someone asked me how thoughts can lead to physical symptoms, well if you ever suffered a panic attack you would know. Last week I woke with a negative mood and was dwelling on a life situation that was causing me stress. My mood continued to dip throughout the day. By late afternoon, in desperation, I tried The Work ( Byron Katie) on myself. Within twenty minutes I was happy and joyful with no anxiety. This works! I never got relief like that when I was on Benzo. Life can be tough and very difficult at times and we are not meant to live on clouds, rolling above the troubles. But we can learn to ride the waves, to deal with situations as they arise and be the best version of us that we can. Sometimes that comes from being at the very bottom and learning to rise up. There are many stories of people who have faced strong adversaries in life yet risen up like a Phoenix and used that difficulty to help others. If we don’t conquer our fears they will conquer us. 
 

I wish you well 🙏

Amen thank you

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thelegend

Hey Tom, how you doing? The wave easing up at all?

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Tom37

Yip wave is pretty much done. Just on the way back down to my current normal whatever that will be. Was definitely a horrible wave so hopefully that means greater healing but who knows. 

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sunnysideup69
11 hours ago, Tom37 said:

Yip wave is pretty much done. Just on the way back down to my current normal whatever that will be. Was definitely a horrible wave so hopefully that means greater healing but who knows. 

 

Good news, Tom.

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jozeff

Great news Tom!!

 

 

You have struggled a long time!

 

Hope things keep on going well!

 

 

Cheers

 

 

Jozeff

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Lynnardgirl

Great news 

Hopefully that was the last of them !

 

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thelegend

Good to hear @Tom37. You are healing! Think of how far you have come since the beginning.

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Tom37

And back into a wave I go. Felt it brewing over last couple of days so not surprising. Same symptoms as the last one so looks like I’m in another one of my cycles I seem to go through. Usually takes three or fours waves then body seems to be happy with whatever it was trying to correct and then moves on to fix something else. Surely there can’t be too much more to correct but who knows. At least so far it hasn’t been as intense as the previous one.

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Lynnardgirl
23 minutes ago, Tom37 said:

And back into a wave I go. Felt it brewing over last couple of days so not surprising. Same symptoms as the last one so looks like I’m in another one of my cycles I seem to go through. Usually takes three or fours waves then body seems to be happy with whatever it was trying to correct and then moves on to fix something else. Surely there can’t be too much more to correct but who knows. At least so far it hasn’t been as intense as the previous one.

So sorry hopefully not as intense or long!

One day at a time my prayers and thoughts with you!

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Tom37

Thanks @LynnardgirlI’ll get through it as we all do....hopefully sooner than later and then until the next one comes along. Such a great life we have.

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Lynnardgirl
1 hour ago, Tom37 said:

Thanks @LynnardgirlI’ll get through it as we all do....hopefully sooner than later and then until the next one comes along. Such a great life we have.

What a great life your right ! Today my wave is horrible was doing better than wham ! Think

your healed than bam! Why why why 

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Tom37

So been feeling fairly average last week or so hopefully that will ease up soon. Doesn’t really feel like a wave or at least not a bad one anyone. Not stopping me functioning or anything although on holiday for next three weeks. 
 

Been hanging out for my holiday and one day into it and the country is now going into full lockdown for the next 4 weeks. But it’s for the best. Only allowed out of property to go to supermarket/pharmacy or for a walk/excerise but need to keep distance from everyone. Police and military (If needed) will be on patrol enforcing the lockdown. We have only had 100 cases in New Zealand but don’t want to end up like Italy so taking early action to prevent community spread.


Thankfully my job is considered an essential service as in the food supply chain so business as usual for us.

 

Hope everyone is doing ok through this.

 

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Junglechicken
15 hours ago, Tom37 said:

So been feeling fairly average last week or so hopefully that will ease up soon. Doesn’t really feel like a wave or at least not a bad one anyone. Not stopping me functioning or anything although on holiday for next three weeks. 
 

Been hanging out for my holiday and one day into it and the country is now going into full lockdown for the next 4 weeks. But it’s for the best. Only allowed out of property to go to supermarket/pharmacy or for a walk/excerise but need to keep distance from everyone. Police and military (If needed) will be on patrol enforcing the lockdown. We have only had 100 cases in New Zealand but don’t want to end up like Italy so taking early action to prevent community spread.


Thankfully my job is considered an essential service as in the food supply chain so business as usual for us.

 

Hope everyone is doing ok through this.

 

 

Same as the UK Tom, our PM announced it last night.

 

TC,

JC

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Lynnardgirl

Yup Oregon too! God bless you Tom

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thelegend
On 3/23/2020 at 2:18 PM, Tom37 said:

So been feeling fairly average last week or so hopefully that will ease up soon. Doesn’t really feel like a wave or at least not a bad one anyone. Not stopping me functioning or anything although on holiday for next three weeks. 
 

Been hanging out for my holiday and one day into it and the country is now going into full lockdown for the next 4 weeks. But it’s for the best. Only allowed out of property to go to supermarket/pharmacy or for a walk/excerise but need to keep distance from everyone. Police and military (If needed) will be on patrol enforcing the lockdown. We have only had 100 cases in New Zealand but don’t want to end up like Italy so taking early action to prevent community spread.


Thankfully my job is considered an essential service as in the food supply chain so business as usual for us.

 

Hope everyone is doing ok through this.

 


Hey Tom, been a while. How you doing? Seems like you have pretty much been “wave-free” for a while now. Hopefully it continues for you.

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sunnysideup69

Hey @Tom37, hope you're doing okay. NZ seems to have handled the weird world situation well.

 

No posts for a while so I'm hoping that means you are doing well :) Sending good wishes your way.

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thelegend

Hey Tom, any updates? Hopefully no news is good news!

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Tom37

Update time..........Been three months and haven’t really posted as not much to report plus been feeling pretty decent so haven’t felt the need. Been working and normal daily living without too much issue. Still not able to exercise much and do sometimes struggle with motivation to do things due to how I’m feeling. Even though healing is happening this journey does mentally wear you down.

 

Still getting waves but most of the time they are generally a lot milder than they where during the first year and being at baseline now lasting weeks. 


In a nasty wave at the moment which came out of nowhere and probably the worst I’ve felt in months which probably prompted me to update. Very similar to previous bad waves but slightly different. Finding it harder to deal with as it’s been a while and it’s the full deal with physical and mental symptoms so doing my best to get through it and while I know it will pass it has dented my confidence in ever recovering. 
 

So overall slowly getting better but my symptoms are still changing and new ones keep coming so at times doesn’t feel like I’m getting anywhere. At least they are not intense and generally manageable unless in a wave and I guess the positive is the symptoms do leave and often don’t return so healing must be happening right?

 

Hope everyone is doing ok with the added stress of this pandemic. Life is back to normal in NZ (apart from closed borders) so thankful for that.

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Tom37

Wave continues and it’s not getting any easier. Felt little better before bed but how I was feeling was just making me too restless and then felt terrible from 2am onwards so no sleep. The shaking and feeling so bad like I use to get. Feels similar to having a very high temperature but yet it’s wd plus the mental symptoms. Day 4 of feeling this bad which is unusual for me and while that doesn’t seem long i struggle to function. Work from home and do what I need to do then if stuck on the couch then so be it. 
 

Of course don’t think this will ever end and all the rest of what a wave brings.

 

 

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ChessieCat

The Are we there yet? topic is currently being updated so is not available for viewing by the members at this time.

 

However, BrassMonkey has written that there does seem to be times post 0 that people tend to experience waves which are worse than the run of the mill ones.  If I recall correctly one of them seems to happen around the 10 month mark but I can't remember the timing of when the next one might happen, but the 18 month to 2 year period does seem to ring a bell with me.

 

Even though Covid wise things are okay for you, the added stress/change of routine etc since the beginning of the year may well have caught up with your nervous system.  It might have been chugging along just keeping up with it but then suddenly it was just a bit too much and the balance tipped the other way.  These are my thoughts.  But we do have other members since the beginning of this year posting about unexpected and/or worse waves which might be attributed to the covid situation.  It's been and still is a very strange situation.

 

6 hours ago, Tom37 said:

Day 4 of feeling this bad which is unusual for me and while that doesn’t seem long i struggle to function. Work from home and do what I need to do then if stuck on the couch then so be it. 
 

Of course don’t think this will ever end and all the rest of what a wave brings.

 

It's good that you are able to do what you need to do when you have to.  Seems like you are looking after yourself physically, but it's might also be helpful to keep reminding yourself that it is what it is AT THIS TIME.  Accepting it can help reduce the mental stress.  When in a bad patch it can be very hard to be positive.  Periods of time just seem so much longer than they really are.  And of course feel like they will never end.  But you've come through this before.  If you've documented your progress here or elsewhere it might be a good idea to read back through your other bad times and the following improvement to remind yourself that it does happen.

 

One foot in front of the other.  Keep plodding.  And if you can't plod, shuffle along. 😉

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Tom37

Thanks @ChessieCat

 

It is very hard to know what does cause these big waves and I guess they can just happen and it’s about getting through them. Had one before that come out of nowhere and when I looked back it was almost exactly a year ago but being further alone in my journey it’s scared me more especially since the gap between baseline and wave is bigger. 
 

Actually still on the drug trying to stabilise and while getting there it’s taking its time that’s for sure. I guess my nervous system was badly affected when I crashed hence all the symptoms and the time taken. 
 

Thr covid situation probably has had an effect without knowing it even with NZ back to normal.


Take care.

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ChessieCat

When you think about it our brains are doing an amazing job trying to sort everything out and getting back to factory settings.  You might have already seen/read these or been given the links but it's easier to just post them again instead of checking:

 

how-psychiatric-drugs-remodel-your-brain

 

Video:  Healing From Antidepressants - Patterns of Recovery

 

 

I really like this description:

 

And from this topic:  What is Happening in Your Brain

 

"It would be like if the World Trade Center Towers hadn't completely fallen - but had crumbled inside in different places.. Imagine if you were [...] to rebuild the tower - WHILE people were coming and going and [...] to work in the building!  You'd have to set up a temporary elevator - but when you needed to fix part of that area, you'd have to tear down that elevator and set up a temporary elevator somewhere else. And so on. You'd have to build, work around, then tear down, then build again, then work around, then build... ALL while people are coming and going, ALL while the furniture is being replaced, ALL while the walls are getting repainted... ALL while [...] is going on INSIDE the building. No doubt it would be chaotic. That is EXACTLY what is happening with windows and waves.  The windows are where the body has "got it right" for a day or so - but then the building shifts and the brain works on something else - and it's chaos again while another temporary pathway is set up to reroute function until repairs are made. 


And just like the Twin Towers- it's possible - but the buiding is a major effort -and it takes a good year or more sometimes. smiley.gif

 

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Tom37

Thanks @ChessieCat

 

Ive been reading those and other self help links on here today when up to it as need a major refresher to cope with this.

 

Anyway,  got through my day. Worked from home and then once key work was done put it aside and just got through the day.  One of those times when it’s hard to do anything other than lie and just suffer though shaking away feeling terrible and trying to think of things to do when your ‘better’.


Do feel bit weak for seeking out support especially as not new to this but in some ways big waves later down the road seem scarier. Maybe good healing will come after the big wave although hasn’t really worked like that in the past.

 

Hopefully a better day tomorrow but if not that day will come soon....(while my wd brain doesn’t believe a word of it and will be doing it’s best to make me believe it)

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ChessieCat
55 minutes ago, Tom37 said:

Do feel bit weak for seeking out support especially as not new to this

 

We all need extra support at times.  I've got a mildly bulging lower back disc at the moment (had cortisone injection yesterday morning) and had hardly slept for 3 nights (had about 7 hours total last night, hallelujah!) and I've had to rely on my daughter over the last 2 days.  I've found it very hard being so helpless.  It's not easy admitting that we need assistance.  But think of it this way, if you had a friend going through what you are you would want to try to help them.

 

And I think that getting the encouragement and support that you need now to see you through this rough patch can help to get you recover quicker simply because it helps to relieve some of the stress.  It's part of the accepting of the situation you are currently in which can help you to do what needs to be done to get through it.  But like anything bad we want it to stop immediately.

 

As an example my daughter has told me that a good incentive to be careful and not do anything stupid and hurting my back more will keep my out of hospital.  And she also said that you don't want to be ringing an ambulance and telling them what stupid thing you did so they have another story to add to their collection.

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sunnysideup69

Hey @Tom37, it's particularly vicious when a wave strikes after a few weeks of feeling okay and it's completely normal to seek out support. We all need reassurance. It's going to pass, hopefully soon, but don't worry if it goes on a bit.....it's just brain repair.

 

I think you're right, your crash in 2018 was a real wobbler. I've been in contact here with someone who has held for a couple of years and is now seeing progress, finally....it can really take its time. Has also been since May 2018 for me. It's definitely a plod forward, not a jog.

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Tom37

Thanks @sunnysideup69

 

So another night of no sleep. Just felt like previous night with physically feeling horrible with intrusive thoughts and bit of fear thrown in about situation. Actually did drop off once but woke myself straight up which probably means insomnia is another symptom of this wave not just because of how I feel. Had that happen before during a previous horrible wave.
 

Will work from home and do the bare minimum then rest up or just do whatever is needed to get through the day. 

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Katy398

Hi Tom, I’m so sorry you’re in another wave. Lexapro is an absolute demon. Looking at your signature does that mean you’re still on it? Things will get better hang on in there. Lots of self care today, keep warm and treat yourself as you’d treat others in the same situation, Just be kind to yourself. 

 I find Insomnia as one of the worst symptoms because it effects everything else in my day. Lack of sleep is hard to ‘acknowledge’, ‘accept’ and ‘float’ I struggle to make a cup of tea when I’m sleep deprived let alone get off to work. I fast tracked to a cold turkey under medical supervision and 18 months off all I can say to you is it does shift have faith it will get better. At one stage I thought I’d never have a full night’s sleep again and now I have maybe 1 or sometimes 2 bad nights out of 7 which I am somehow managing to work round dare I say my new normal!!!

Take care Tom and remember what everyone says, WAH. We All Heal. 

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Tom37

Thanks @Katy398

 

Yes still on a low dose of it and will be until I’m stable enough to taper. I crashed hard so was in a right state at the beginning but ever so slowly things have improved to be feeling pretty decent outside of a wave.
 

Normally I sleep ok at about 5 to 7 hours a night every night. It’s just in these nasty waves where it goes but that does create its own anxious thoughts of will it go back to how it was. 
 

You have done well to get to 18 months off and hopefully not much longer to go.

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Tom37

Got through another day in this bastard of a wave. Worked still lunchtime then pretty much all afternoon on the couch resting. I’ve never been one to fall asleep during the day so that was never going to happen but resting with eyes closed was all I could really do. 
 

Still feeling like I have so no change yet so could be another long night.

 

Also for the last 6 months at least whenever in a wave I’m getting this pulsating tingling all throughout my body. Never whole body at once it can go from legs to arms and so on and only lasts a few seconds in each area and it’s inside me not like tingling on the skin. It doesn’t hurt but does get annoying. Wondering if it’s do with nerves or maybe a temperature thing as kinda feels bit like an internal tingling chill. Been even worse in this wave and a symptom that is sticking around longer than normal.
 

Every wave I always think that this one feels different and may not end or will last for months and months. Hate it. Hopefully this brain of mine hurries up and does what it’s trying to do. No gain without suffering in wd it seems.

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sunnysideup69
15 hours ago, Tom37 said:

 

Will work from home and do the bare minimum then rest up or just do whatever is needed to get through the day. 

 

That's it. Hoping it buggers off sooner rather than later.

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Tom37

Another horrible night. Seem to have this weird anxious feeling in me which is totally wd and not mine own as it comes on when  the feeling bad feeling eases. More sensitive to sound and feel it going through my chest. Been listening to rain on the roof sounds on YouTube to try to keep calm. Usually have no problem day dreaming about something cool before sleep but couldn’t do that if you paid me, thinking about all weird stuff so trying to change the channel.

 

This too shall pass.

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Tom37

Yip horrible night alright. Just wish I could lie in bed and be feeling physically ok instead like I do. Night three and I’m struggling all right. Intrusive thoughts and my mind feels like someone else is in control of it. Really  questioning if I will get out of this period especially with the sleep. Feel like a million miles away. Of course then feel like ending it all as only way to stop the suffering. May have to resort to a benzo in another night or two if doesn’t improve to get me through it.

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Hanna72

Hey Tom

Hope you will have some relief soon🙏
 

30 minutes ago, Tom37 said:

Really  questioning if I will get out of this period especially with the sleep

You will get out of it, unfortunately it takes time. I know we sometimes don’t want to suffer one more day, but think of it like this, your body is repairing itself and stabilising from these drugs.

33 minutes ago, Tom37 said:

Of course then feel like ending it all

Please don’t ever think like that. You will be a survivor, what you are experiencing just shows what a strong person you are💪 Have faith in yourself. You CAN do it

My best wishes to you,

hang in there 

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Lynnardgirl
2 hours ago, Tom37 said:

Yip horrible night alright. Just wish I could lie in bed and be feeling physically ok instead like I do. Night three and I’m struggling all right. Intrusive thoughts and my mind feels like someone else is in control of it. Really  questioning if I will get out of this period especially with the sleep. Feel like a million miles away. Of course then feel like ending it all as only way to stop the suffering. May have to resort to a benzo in another night or two if doesn’t improve to get me through it.

So sorry ! You will come out of it. My prayers and thoughts with you. Stay strong and know this will end. 

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Tom37

Thanks for the messages above. Ending it all isn’t an option it’s just how you feel when going through this. I haven’t felt like this about since the first 4 to 5 months. Apologise if scared anyone.

 

Not afraid to admit that struggling at the moment. Thought I was through these horrible waves and the symptoms that come with them and because the gap from baseline to this wave is huge it makes it even harder where at the beginning your constantly feeling terrible. 
 

Decided with partner to give it at least another two nights before considerIng a benzo for sleep as today is Friday so weekend ahead. If I can manage to work through this then anything after this wave will be a piece of cake. I did do 4 nights in a row during one wave so can handle it. Its weird this time though as feel more awake at night kind of a bit wired probably from being overtired along with the restlessness feeling I have. Just need to work on the fear that I may have lost my ability to sleep!.....even though I’m sure I haven’t until I do the this thought will stick with me.

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