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EthanC ~2 years without my SSRI, after 9+ years on it.


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Hi everyone,

 

It's been awhile. I made a post here back in Dec. 2017 and thought to give everyone an update on my situation.

Really didn't think I'd visit here again and post in this section, but here we are!

 

To give you a brief summary of my situation (linked my post/story for more details), I was on Lexapro/Cipralex/Escitalopram for over 9 years; dose ranging between 5mg-20mg.

At the time of my post, I thought it was a hopeless situation and was never going to recover.

Seeing how few success stories there were, I thought there were little-to-no-chance of me recovering considering how long I was on the medication + marijuana usage.

 

My main issues at the time (7 months into cold-turkey quitting) was the deterioration of my brain functions. I wasn't only feeling "depressed" because of the drug and my environmental situation, but was feeling "chemically broken" from the ground up.

All my bodily functions were seemingly failing. It forgot how to operate; basic functions, thought processes, emotional and stress control seemed impossible to manage.

 

I had couple options to choose from at the time:

1) Give up all hope, rot away, waste my life until I eventually take my own life.

2) Go back on the medication OR go on another medication (like my family doctor recommended)

3) Stick it out, sacrifice these months/years to hopefully recover.

 

I can't tell you how close I was to choosing option 2), I even took ~2 pills of my medication before throwing it out and sticking it out with 3).

 

But there was one post here in THIS section specifically that ultimately gave me the courage to try and beat this thing: the recovery story from pug. (link below as well)

 

After reading his story, I told myself, "Ethan, 2 years, sacrifice 2 years, you might still hate yourself, you might never recover but you never know until you try. Quit and stick it out for 2 years, and see what happens."

 

I did just that and after ~1.5 years of stopping escitalopram, I slowly started feeling human again. I was able to slowly get my life together.

I have more ambition and drive than ever. Maybe due to the fact knowing this drug wasted so many years, and that I HAVE to catch up.
I can actually feel sadness, happiness; not needing marijuana to feel genuine emotions and not needing the SSRI to feel functional again.

It made me realize the source of my marijuana addiction was to counter-act the numbness Cipralex brought on.

 

Long story short, a part of me thought this journey was nonrecoverable; but I was wrong.

I don't think I'm fully healed yet, and honestly don't think I'll ever be (Sorry, always been a cup-half-empty kind of guy).

But there is hope in getting better, and I believe in that.

 

I'll go on to say that quitting cold-turkey might not be the most appropriate way; but I was fortunate enough to have my parents help me out at the time.

I'll even go on to say that maybe the medication short term isn't that bad for you per say; maybe it can save some people from the brink of killing themselves, but I genuinely think these drugs hurt you more the longer you take them.

If I had a choice, I wish to have never touched this drug.

 

I wish all of you on this journey nothing but the best; and hope one day, you will join pug and myself to tell this side of the story.

 

Sincere regards,

Ethan

 

 

 

 

~2008: Started escitalopram (Cipralex) 10mg

~2012: Tried stopping for 3 months, eventually relapsed.

~2013-2014: escitalopram (Cipralex) 20mg, Ritalin 10mg

~2015: escitalopram (Cipralex) 10mg only

~2017: Was dosing 5-10 mg, then stopped completely cold-turkey in May 2017.

 

Overall, a ~9-year course of escitalopram (Cipralex/Lexapro).

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Thanks for posting this. Especially since my situation is pretty similar—10 years on lexapro and mirtazipine, 13 months off both.

September 2014 to July 2015 - 20 mg Lexapro, 30mg Mirtazipine

 

August 2015 to November 2016- 10mg Lexapro, 30 mg Mirtazipine

 

Nov. 2016 to Nov. 2017 - 10mg Lexapro, 3.75 mg Mirtazipine

 

Nov. 2017 to Mach 2018 - 5mg/2.5mg Lexapro, 0mg Mirtazipne

 

Mach 2018 to Dec. 2018 - 0mg Lexapro, 0mg Mirtazipne

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U will recover the fact tat u are feeling better after 1.5 years only is a major breakthrough:) 

 

its ra a very tiring process but ul get there :) 

 

may i ask Wat was ur physical symptoms? 

Sept 28 : nov 10 amitriptyline 10 mg

no history of drugs in past 

 

symptoms 

mild grainy vision , visual snow 

tinnitus 

dizziness

floters 

difficult in focusin 

muscle pain

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Hi Ehtan

 

congrats. Did you also had sexual symptoms?

mild depression: took effaxor XR 75mg From nov 2016 - feb 2017 for 4 months

PSSD : Since then along with continuing withdrawal.

cognition problems, headache , fatigue, concentration problems, anhedonia, PSSD ( erection 2/10, Libido1/10, orgasm 4/10) 

no significant improvements in any withdrawal symptoms or any PSSD symptoms

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  • Mentor
FarmGirlWorks

Congratulations, Ethan!!! I too find inspiration in Pug's story as well as anybody who CT'ed and made it anyways.

  • Prozac | late 2004-mid-2005 | CT WD in a couple months, mostly emotional
  • Sertraline 50-100mg | 11/2011-3/2014, 10/2014-3/2017
  • Sertraline fast taper March 2017, 4 weeks, OFF sertraline April 1, 2017
  • Quit alcohol May 20, 2017
  • Lifestyle changes: AA, kundalini yoga

 

"If you've seen a monster, even if it's horrible, that's evidence of divinity." – Damien Echols

 

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Congrats! This makes me happy! 👏🏻😁

Originally at 100 mg Zoloft and 150 mg xl Wellbutrin for ten years. 

Abruptly dropped 50 mg of Zoloft April 2018.

Cut Wellbutrin in half (75 mg) for a month in December 2018.

Cold turkeyed Wellbutrin January 2019.

Reinstated Wellbutrin half of 150 xl (75 mg) in January 2019 and added Xanax.

ER visit iv of 5 mg Haloperidol.

Finished Xanax taper, cold turkeyed Wellbutrin February 2019 and added 10 mg buspar twice daily.

Tapering buspar

 

50 mg Zoloft at 10:00 am

 

2.5 mg buspar at 9:00 pm 

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Hey Ethan , M Glad That You're Recovering And Regaining Your Life.....I Hope I Can Too Post My Story Someday Over Here 

All The Very Best :)

Started escitalopram 10mg in March 2014,then reduced to 5mg....quit it in September 2016 CT...Had a withdrawal, was put again on 10mg one month later....

Again was reduced to 5mg then I Quit it again in December 2017 CT.... Started Having Withdrawals Since Feb 2018...

Doc reinstated me on 10mg of escitalopram on May 26 had a aDverse reaction...Stopped reinstatement

Still Off Meds

Now taking :

Omega 3

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Thank you for this post.

Recently it was my 1st anniversary without drug (buspirone) that is main culprit of my new problems.

I generally gave up. I don't even have the energy or motivation to update my topic anymore.
I chose option 2. I mean I don't want any SSRI, I wanted to try something else to alleviate at least one of my symptoms (restlessness/tension/akathisia). But I have also devastated GI functions (I decided to forget about libido for now). I have a feeling that only some miraculous action of some drug will stop that - I know all the docs know nothing, moreover they deny what happened - I can only play lottery with drugs.

My shrink also didn't want to give me SSRI/SNRI yet. I was given mirtazapine and accepted it...

 

[2013 - 2017] >10 meds and combos (some breaks without meds; last in May-Sep 2016)

[2017] Mar 22 - venlafaxine 150; initially with mianserine 20 which I stopped around June due to serious stomachaches and bloating; 1 month of break in Aug when: duloxetine 60 + esketamine clinical trial)
Sep 05 - venlafaxine 150 + bupropion 150
Oct 11 - tapering off venlafaxine while still on bupro 150; Oct 21 - venla 37,5
Nov 06 - venla 37,5 + bupro 150 + >START buspirone 30>
Nov 20 - venla 12,5 + bupro 150 + buspirone 30;   Nov 29 - [STOP venla]
Dec 01 - [tried to STOP buspi cold turkey] / Dec 03 - HELL unleashed;   Dec 10 - buspi 10;   Dec 17 - buspi 20 (+ still bupro 150); Jan 02 [STOP] bupro;
[2018] Mar 17 - >START quetiapine 50 SR> for tension, restlessness and attacks of fury (buspirone persisting w/d symptom)

Apr 24 - FINALLY STOPPED buspirone (5-month taper; worst in my life) - w/d symptoms continue... Jun 02 - STOP quetiapine
Now taking: mirtazapine 7,5 mg (helps to fall asleep quickly, doesn't help for waking at dawn; didn't tolerate higher doses); for restlessness / akathisia: taurine; antihistamines (small amounts cause still can cause headache and dry mouth even at 12,5 mg of hydroxyzine or promethazine); melatonin 1 mg; omega-3 (330 EPA, 220 DHA); Mg.

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On 5/16/2019 at 7:05 AM, voyteck said:

Thank you for this post.

Recently it was my 1st anniversary without drug (buspirone) that is main culprit of my new problems.

I generally gave up. I don't even have the energy or motivation to update my topic anymore.
I chose option 2. I mean I don't want any SSRI, I wanted to try something else to alleviate at least one of my symptoms (restlessness/tension/akathisia). But I have also devastated GI functions (I decided to forget about libido for now). I have a feeling that only some miraculous action of some drug will stop that - I know all the docs know nothing, moreover they deny what happened - I can only play lottery with drugs.

My shrink also didn't want to give me SSRI/SNRI yet. I was given mirtazapine and accepted it...

 

I’m taking buspar for withdrawals right now. How long were you on it and at what dose? Did you taper? 

Originally at 100 mg Zoloft and 150 mg xl Wellbutrin for ten years. 

Abruptly dropped 50 mg of Zoloft April 2018.

Cut Wellbutrin in half (75 mg) for a month in December 2018.

Cold turkeyed Wellbutrin January 2019.

Reinstated Wellbutrin half of 150 xl (75 mg) in January 2019 and added Xanax.

ER visit iv of 5 mg Haloperidol.

Finished Xanax taper, cold turkeyed Wellbutrin February 2019 and added 10 mg buspar twice daily.

Tapering buspar

 

50 mg Zoloft at 10:00 am

 

2.5 mg buspar at 9:00 pm 

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@EthanC I have a similar background of medication use, and I'm already 3 years into my taper. 

Can I ask your symptoms, how you spent your time while healing, and how your healing process unfolded?

Thanks!

 

med history: 17 years total

Concerta: 2 yrs - cold turkey, brought on first "depression" 

Short trials of Zoloft and Effexor: 1-3 years - multiple cold turkey's brought on OCD intrusive thoughts for the first time

Lexapro 15-20 mg (16 yrs)  - tried to quit once, cold turkey, worst WD ever, had to go on to 20mg to stop WD

Welbutrin 150mg (8-ish yrs) NO w/d symptoms from CT

Adderall 5-7.5mg (8-10-ish yrs) quit CT, brought on many WD symptoms, but manageable. 

 

Begin taper March 2018 Currently on 4.4 mg lexapro - down from 20mg

 

Symptoms depression, horrible intrusive thoughts and urges, new onset PMS/PMDD, constant extreme irritation and anger, visual hallucinations, irrational thinking patterns, panic, nausea, dizzy, intolerance to working out, chemical sensitivities, noise sensitivities, memory issues, heart palps, etc. 

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Hi EthanC,

Did you experience any kind of sexual difficulty due to the SSRI drugs? If yes, has it resolved?

I was on Sertraline 100 mg from 20-01-2010 to 11-01-2018.

I am off Sertraline now. 

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Hey guys,

 

Thanks for the questions, I'll try to go through every one.

 

@MRothbard Keep it up, you got this. Don't focus too much on the timeframe and let it happen. Try on improving yourself tangibly (diet and exercise) and it'll get easier I promise.

 

@shawny Hmm it's been so long that it's hard to remember, I must of mentioned some in the link to my old post. Off the top of my head: feeling very dizzy/vertigo, headaches, lack of appetite, muscle aches, physically weak (these symptoms ranged from days/weeks/months). Physical pains was minor compared to the mental pain. Was unable to feel "happy" to the core, it was really terrifying.

 

@hussy Yes I was premature ejaculating very easily for ~1 yr or so? Now I feel back to baseline and a bit hornier compared to when I was on the medication. On the meds, I lasted very long but it also muted the sensation of sex a bit as well.

 

@FarmGirlWorks Thanks! Without his story, I'm 99% sure I would of relapsed. He gave me hope and determination to survive without it.

 

@Hannahe :]

 

@Anubhav Don't give up, I believe in you.

 

@voyteck Hey don't worry, everyone is different. There's no shame in taking medication; if it helps you, it helps you.

 

@Peachy I trapped myself in my basement for ~1 yr, had really bad skin (maybe due to hormonal change without the drug?), the waves were real. Very brief moments of feeling ok with long periods of feeling like crap. Eventually pushed myself to go to the gym 2 times a week. Wouldn't say I'm "depression"-free but I feel a lot better. Without the medication, I just couldn't stand rotting away.

 

@Sandman Refer to my reply to hussy. Yes it has resolved mostly, no erectile dysfunction if that's what you're asking.

 

I want to remind everyone that there isn't a "fixed" schedule for people to heal. It took me ~1.5 yrs, but it might take you more or less since everyone has different circumstances.

Another thing people need to remember is that environmental factors play a big role in how you feel and heal.

If you are in a sh*tty situation (eg: bad financials, lack of family/friends/love, work-related and physical issues, etc.), even if you are ~years into quitting, you are going to feel bad regardless of the medication.

Try to improve on factors you can control like diet and exercise and focus on improving yourself.

Last thing to mention is that there is no right or wrong, maybe these medications do help some of you.

Personally, one major reason I wanted to quit was because I didn't want ANY drug controlling me. A drug so powerful that I would be crippled without it.

But if said-drug helps you and you are willing to take it for the foreseeable future, I can't blame you because there is no right or wrong.

 

Hope this helps.

 

All the best,

Ethan

 

~2008: Started escitalopram (Cipralex) 10mg

~2012: Tried stopping for 3 months, eventually relapsed.

~2013-2014: escitalopram (Cipralex) 20mg, Ritalin 10mg

~2015: escitalopram (Cipralex) 10mg only

~2017: Was dosing 5-10 mg, then stopped completely cold-turkey in May 2017.

 

Overall, a ~9-year course of escitalopram (Cipralex/Lexapro).

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Hi Ethan: Thank you so much for your update!  Always glad to read a positive story.  Just wondering.... you talked about a "cold turkey" then in your signature it says in 2017 you slowly tapered off.... how did you get off exactly? How slow was your taper? Or did you cold turkey.  It's not clear...

200 Zoloft; 10 mg Zyprexa; 4 mg valium as of May 2021;  Valium taper: July 16: 3.5 valium; July 30: 3 mg (paused valium taper)
Zyprexa: July 26: 8.75 mg

-------
Dec 1, 2016. 10 mg zyprexa for 1.5 month. Started taper mid-Jan. 2017. Cut 1.25 mg every 2 weeks; smaller cuts 2.5 mg down. Stopped at .6 mg. May 7, 2017: zyprexa free. 
Zoloft: Dec1, 2016, 200 mg. Started taper: Jun12, 2017: 197.5 mg; Jun19,:195 mg; July 2:185mg; July 9,:180 mg; July16,: 175; July 23: 170; July 30: 165; Aug6: 160; Aug13: 155; Aug. 20: 150; Aug.27: 146 mg; Sept3: 145 mg; Sept10:143 mg; Sept17:140 mg....Nov5: 122 mg...Dec3:112.5 mg; Jan14, 2018: 95 mg...Jan28: 90 mg; Feb21:80 mg; Mar11: 75 mg; May2:70 mg; May15: 68 mg; May28: 65 mg; Jun9: 62 mg;Jun25: 60 mg:July22: 55 mg; Aug25: 45 mg. Aug28: 50 mg...Oct 28: 38 mg; Dec.4: 30 mg; Jan8,2019: 25mg; Feb6: 23.5 mg; Apr1:17.5mg; May1:1 mg; May 5: 18;  May 18:15mg; June 16:12.5mg; Sept 10:11 mg; Sept.16:10 mg; Oct. 1: 9mg; Nov. 27: 8mg; Dec.5: 7mg; Jan.1,2020, 6 mg; Feb1: 5 mg; May 1: 2.5 mg; Jn 1: 2 mg; Jy 1: 1.5 mg

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thanks for the answers dude.

September 2014 to July 2015 - 20 mg Lexapro, 30mg Mirtazipine

 

August 2015 to November 2016- 10mg Lexapro, 30 mg Mirtazipine

 

Nov. 2016 to Nov. 2017 - 10mg Lexapro, 3.75 mg Mirtazipine

 

Nov. 2017 to Mach 2018 - 5mg/2.5mg Lexapro, 0mg Mirtazipne

 

Mach 2018 to Dec. 2018 - 0mg Lexapro, 0mg Mirtazipne

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Do you think there is any hope of me recovering?

I was on celexa since I was 13 and went cold turkey when I turned 21. Over the course of a year I think it was I ended up going on 9-10 other different psychiatric medications. 

 

So that inturrupted my healing a lot. So my situation feels really hopeless to me. 

I was put on Prozac,Lexapro, Wellbutrin, Rexulti, Trazodone, back on celexa, Buspar, Zoloft, and an MAOI called EMSam for 2-3 weeks. Before I realized that the symptoms I was having had to be withdrawal. Because I didn't have them before medication. I was also on Ritalin, Adderal, and Vyvanse until I was 18 for ADHD. And also smoked weed heavily  in high school. 

 

At this point I feel like my brain is permanently damaged. Considering I can't find a single success story with someone taking EMSam. 

Plus the various other medications I was on. 

 

I also did 22 sessions of TMS therapy after and 2 ketamine infusions. Which idk if that further interrupted my healing. 

 

Did the symptoms go away gradually for you or did you just wake up one day feeling normal? Because right now I'm dealing with emotional numbness, anhedonia, Sexual dysfunction, and derealization/depersonalization. I also have terrible short term memory and can't concentrate anymore.

Drugs I have been on- Vyvanse 30mg, Adderal, citalopram 30mg, Zoloft 20mg, rexulti 10mg,Wellbutrin, Lexapro 20mg, buspar, Prozac 20mg, Trazodone 50mg, Ritalin 20mg.

some of them I can't remember doses for. 

 

was on on Zoloft, Ritalin, and adderal between the ages of 11-13. Then I was on Celexa and Vyvanse, between the ages of 13-21. Don't remember exact dates. 

 

Then when I went off the celexa and Vyvanse abruptly and went on all of the other medications. Between the ages of 21 and 22. 

 I saw psychiatrist for about 3 months and was put on most of them on and off. I think it was the other SSRI's besides celexa and Zoloft , buspar, Wellbutrin, and rexulti. 

 

 Then I went inpatient a few times after that where it was diagnosed as a recurrence of depression and went on and off medications like celexa, Trazodone, and most recently about 3-4 weeks ago EMSam. I have been completely off medication since than.

supplements- magnesium 250mg, and 2 omega 3's. 

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@Madeleine Sorry if I wasn't clear enough. I was dosing between 5mg-10mg daily then decided to quit completely. I'll edit my signature. First month was tolerable other than some physical symptoms , ~6 months in was the hardest for me.

 

@MRothbard Np.

 

@Mikegs96 Hey Mike, your last line was almost EXACTLY what I experienced; and to me, that was the hardest part. Please read my original topic from around ~2 years ago (link above), I went through almost the EXACT symptoms you're going through!! I felt like I was a 3-out-of-10 version of myself. I felt non-human, brain dead (slow and stupid), unhappy to feel happy, couldn't concentrate, insomnia at first then oversleeping, etc. Genuinely thought I was permanently damaged. If I could recover, I sincerely believe you can recover since I was almost 30 when I quit. You're in your early 20s right?? Your mind is still developing (and healing faster) than us!! 

Look I'm no doctor and won't pretend to be one. My family doctor (for a long time) recommended that I SHOULD STAY ON MEDS, he was genuinely a nice guy and trying to help me, BUT HE DOESN'T ACTUALLY KNOW WHAT I WAS GOING THROUGH. Only you know (and the people who took these meds know). I could explain to him with the utmost details, but he would still recommend anti-depressants because I seemed majorly depressed.

I trusted my gut and pug's success story and told myself to sacrifice ~2 years of my life; using that time to focus solely on healing. Honestly told myself if I felt worse or the same after these 2 years, I'll go back on medication.

But I didn't feel worse! I genuinely felt better ~1.5 years in. Sure I have more anxiety and more stress vs. when I was on meds; But I enjoy this state of mind over that bullsh*t filter these drug put on us any day. I actually LIKE the stress because it's making me get off my butt and accomplish things in life. I can tell you right now I wouldn't be as motivated to type out to you all if I was medicated (in my opinion at least).

Please if you have a chance, give ~2 years of your life and devote it solely to healing, do it! I hope you have family or people supporting you, because it'll make the journey less painful. I have a strong strong feeling I'll see a reply from you feeling way better if you decide to detox from everything for ~2 yrs. (Like no marijuana, no meds, eat a better diet, make yourself go to the gym 1-2 week with cardio).

And tell yourself if you genuinely feel like **** even after those years of trying to heal, there is no shame in taking the meds, OK? But do give this a sincere try.

Don't know why but I have a good feeling about your case, and I'm not just saying that. I don't know too much about "EMSam" but since you took it for less than a month, I believe your body can heal from that easily.

It's going to be a hard journey; but trust me, trust yourself, be patient and YOU GOT THIS!!

~2008: Started escitalopram (Cipralex) 10mg

~2012: Tried stopping for 3 months, eventually relapsed.

~2013-2014: escitalopram (Cipralex) 20mg, Ritalin 10mg

~2015: escitalopram (Cipralex) 10mg only

~2017: Was dosing 5-10 mg, then stopped completely cold-turkey in May 2017.

 

Overall, a ~9-year course of escitalopram (Cipralex/Lexapro).

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  • Altostrata changed the title to EthanC ~2 years without my SSRI, after 9+ years on it.
intothewoods

What a story! Congratulations, @EthanC. Thank you for taking the time to chronicle your journey. I am inspired anew. 

* Fluoxetine: 40 mg 1999-2012; 60 mg 2012-March 2018;  49 mg at present.

* Provigil: 25-100 mg PRN 2005 to mid-2015; 200-300 mg mid-2015 to early 2016; tapered from 300 mg in early 2016 to 100 mg early 2017; tapered from 100 mg early 2017 to 31 mg June 15, 2019; 22 mg at present.

* Amitriptyline: 10-15 mg 2002-2013; 25 mg 2014 to December 5, 2018; December 15, 2018 converted to water suspension and tapered to 21 1/2 mg at present

* Diazepam: 5 mg at night 2002-present

 Supplements: Iron for anemia

 

Back Story: From 2012 thru early 2017, relocated and cycled through over 20 primary and psych docs (supposedly for severe Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) who prescribed two dozen different psych meds in search of the "perfect therapeutic combo." Took most for only a few days, some for a week. Included Wellbutrin, Cymbalta, Lexapro, Seroquel, Lamictal, Klonopin, Lyrica, Gabapentin, Belsomra, Tramadol, Librium, Halcyon, Remeron and -- the last straw, Trintellix. Began in early 2016 when it was still called Brintellix (Pharma's attempt to combine the words "brilliance" and "intelligence" in a pill name), became unable to eat or sleep, lost 25 lbs and the ability to speak. Slowly tapered myself back to Prozac by 2017 but was unable to stop akathisia, cortisol mornings and kindling which continue, actively, through present.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

So pleased for you Ethan you bring hope to all that CT, they wont spend seven years either bad or very bad.

 

I wish you luck and hope you vontinue to live a great life.

May 2016 - Aug 2016 - Prozac 20mg

 

March 2017 - June 2017 - Sertraline 100mg. Horrific withdrawal 5 m onths.

 

July 2017 - Aug 2017 - Mirtazapine 15mg. Horrific.

 

August 2017 - December 2017 Fluoxetine 10mg for 2 weeks ghen Escitalopram 20mg for 12 weeks. Never felt normal since this. Or baseline.

 

March 2018 - June 2018 - Escitalopram 5mg for 12 weeks. Stopped and here i am full of symptoms i never had.

 

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On 5/22/2019 at 8:41 AM, EthanC said:

I trapped myself in my basement for ~1 yr, had really bad skin (maybe due to hormonal change without the drug?), the waves were real. Very brief moments of feeling ok with long periods of feeling like crap. Eventually pushed myself to go to the gym 2 times a week. Wouldn't say I'm "depression"-free but I feel a lot better. Without the medication, I just couldn't stand rotting away.

  

 

 

I had bad skin when I got off SSRI's too. I think it was probably testosterone spiking as hormones ceased being affected by the drugs. I started consistently working out after quitting Lexapro, but while on Cymbalta. I made some progress but I tended to retain a lot of fat even as I got a bit stronger.
Mentally I started improving a bit once I was off lexapro, but after getting off SSRI's completely I had all these acne breakouts on on my back and over a 6 months I significantly dropped body fat without major changes in diet or exercise. 

Anyway just wanna say you're not alone, there are so many things in common with my experience - especilly **** environmental factors making it all the harder to quit.

I was on it for 6 years but at higher doses, up to 40mg, tried to effectively CT it a bunch of times but ended up on Cymbalta then Zoloft before actually quitting finally. I do think actual mental functioning - concentration, memory, etc can fully recover, I haven't written a proper update but that's definitely been the case for me.

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Thank you and thank you again. Enjoy every moment of your new life x

2008-2013 - Various meds on and off since age 18 incl. Sertraline, Prozac, Mirtazipine, Abilify. Prescribed for severe OCD.

CT'd several times over these years and reinstated after subsequent psych hospitalisations.

2014-2015 - Clomipramine, quetiapine and Epilum

2015-Jan 2017 - Prozac 40mg (stopped contraceptive pill, most stable period of time)

(Beginning of taper) Jan-October 2017 - Tapered Prozac to zero.

15 Jan 2018 - Reinstated Prozac at 2mg due to acute w/d symptoms

February 2018 - tapered to 1.8mg

May 2018 - reinstated at 5mg due to severe w/d symptoms. 9 month hold, stabilized well at around 6/7 months.

March 2019 - Tapered to 4.9mg

Current supplements: fish oils, probiotic, ashwaganda, colostrum powder, cannabis

 

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@Hannahe Sorry for late reply (I don't have email reminders if someone mentions me - I'll have to check settings). I took buspirone 30 mg for only 4 weeks (together with venlafaxine and bupropion). When I tried to stop it (leaflet and doctors DON'T advise to taper), the hell began. So I came back to 20 mg and tapered for 5 months. More details in my topic.

[2013 - 2017] >10 meds and combos (some breaks without meds; last in May-Sep 2016)

[2017] Mar 22 - venlafaxine 150; initially with mianserine 20 which I stopped around June due to serious stomachaches and bloating; 1 month of break in Aug when: duloxetine 60 + esketamine clinical trial)
Sep 05 - venlafaxine 150 + bupropion 150
Oct 11 - tapering off venlafaxine while still on bupro 150; Oct 21 - venla 37,5
Nov 06 - venla 37,5 + bupro 150 + >START buspirone 30>
Nov 20 - venla 12,5 + bupro 150 + buspirone 30;   Nov 29 - [STOP venla]
Dec 01 - [tried to STOP buspi cold turkey] / Dec 03 - HELL unleashed;   Dec 10 - buspi 10;   Dec 17 - buspi 20 (+ still bupro 150); Jan 02 [STOP] bupro;
[2018] Mar 17 - >START quetiapine 50 SR> for tension, restlessness and attacks of fury (buspirone persisting w/d symptom)

Apr 24 - FINALLY STOPPED buspirone (5-month taper; worst in my life) - w/d symptoms continue... Jun 02 - STOP quetiapine
Now taking: mirtazapine 7,5 mg (helps to fall asleep quickly, doesn't help for waking at dawn; didn't tolerate higher doses); for restlessness / akathisia: taurine; antihistamines (small amounts cause still can cause headache and dry mouth even at 12,5 mg of hydroxyzine or promethazine); melatonin 1 mg; omega-3 (330 EPA, 220 DHA); Mg.

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  • 1 year later...

@EthanC Congratulations!!! So well deserved and very much earned. Must take so much bravery, courage and strength. I do not know if I have what it takes in me to come out the out the other side. 

 

I have a similar history, have been on Lexapro 8 years and wanted to ask your advice. Did you suffer from insomnia? And if so, how did you cope? Insomnia is the hardest symptom for me as it makes everything else worse and I am afraid it will end in psychosis.

 

Congratulations again. 

Lexapro/escitalopram ( 20 mg) since 2012 

Tried to taper over four month period-starting May 2020-and crashed in November 2020

Hospitalized November 2020 

11/28/2020 reinstated Lexapro (20 mg) and started 15 mg Remeron and 2.5 olanzapine

1/1/2021 Lexapro 20 mg, Remeron 15 mg, olanzapine 0

 

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