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mstimc

Waiting for The "Real Me"

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mstimc

When I was going through withdrawal and recovery, I kept asking myself "When will the real me be back?".  Eventually, I realized I had to redefine what and who the "real me" meant.  I certainly didn't want to go back to the anxious, obsessive person I was before meds.  You can't go through SSRI/benzo use and withdrawal and be the same person.  You need to forge a new identity that embraces your experience.  In my professional life, I was a manager and performance auditor, oriented to facts and numbers.  My SSRI withdrawal taught me empathy and awareness, things that were never my strong points.  At work, I was able to recognize anxious behavior in some of my  closest co-workers and friends, and help them steer a course toward managing, rather than masking, their symptoms.  I became much more open about dealing with my own anxiety/OCD and found more people understood than I would have thought.

 

I think we also need to remember life is a series of events that constantly change us, for better or worse.  The "real me" isn't static.  Several years ago, between my son's junior and senior year in high school, we took an evening walk  We had the dubious pleasure of living exactly a mile and a half from the Nixon library, so we made a three-mile, one-hour walk.  We talked about many things.  Nothing monumental or life-changing, but we both learned something from and about each other we otherwise may never have known.  That walk and conversation was life-changing and became part of the "real me".  I'm not the same person I was in my 20's or 40's or even a year ago.  I'd like to think I'm better for the things I've been through, and can be a better person to others for it.


Tim C

Started Paxil for GAD in 1999

Unsuccessful taper attempt in 2006

Paxilprogress helped with a successful taper completed in 2009

Using therapy and CBT to manage my anxiety

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Cocopuffz17

That is great to hear! I have also found myself noticing things as you said in other people that I would of never noticed before going through this challenge of AD WD. By reading your story, you have grown immensely in a positive direction! It will continue and thanks for sharing your experience :)  


I follow The Plant Paradox lifestyle by Dr.Gundry. This lifestyle has given me my life back and I feel better than I have ever felt in my life. It has enabled me to finally get off of this medication and truly live my life. Nutrition is the key to health!!!!! 

 

2008 to 2019  - 20 mg Paroxetine

 

Attempted 2 CT's around the 5-6 year mark. Were absolutely terrible and reinstated. Was never explained by the doctor the seriousness of the short half life of this drug. 

 

2017 - Attempted a tapered discontinuation of this drug and reinstated after being unsuccessful.

 

2019 - Feb. 12 - After a three month taper I am off of paroxetine. The 3 months were terrible, awful withdrawal feelings. I followed the doctors guidelines for the reduction of this drug and now know it was way too fast. 
 

2019 - Oct. 12 - 8 months off paroxetine. 75% improvement since coming off the drug. Definitely have had tons of challenges along the way. Let’s go!!!! 

 

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mstimc
7 hours ago, Cocopuffz17 said:

That is great to hear! I have also found myself noticing things as you said in other people that I would of never noticed before going through this challenge of AD WD. By reading your story, you have grown immensely in a positive direction! It will continue and thanks for sharing your experience :)  

Thank you Coco!


Tim C

Started Paxil for GAD in 1999

Unsuccessful taper attempt in 2006

Paxilprogress helped with a successful taper completed in 2009

Using therapy and CBT to manage my anxiety

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India
On 12/15/2019 at 2:51 PM, mstimc said:

When I was going through withdrawal and recovery, I kept asking myself "When will the real me be back?".  Eventually, I realized I had to redefine what and who the "real me" meant.  I certainly didn't want to go back to the anxious, obsessive person I was before meds.  You can't go through SSRI/benzo use and withdrawal and be the same person.  You need to forge a new identity that embraces your experience.  In my professional life, I was a manager and performance auditor, oriented to facts and numbers.  My SSRI withdrawal taught me empathy and awareness, things that were never my strong points.  At work, I was able to recognize anxious behavior in some of my  closest co-workers and friends, and help them steer a course toward managing, rather than masking, their symptoms.  I became much more open about dealing with my own anxiety/OCD and found more people understood than I would have thought.

 

I think we also need to remember life is a series of events that constantly change us, for better or worse.  The "real me" isn't static.  Several years ago, between my son's junior and senior year in high school, we took an evening walk  We had the dubious pleasure of living exactly a mile and a half from the Nixon library, so we made a three-mile, one-hour walk.  We talked about many things.  Nothing monumental or life-changing, but we both learned something from and about each other we otherwise may never have known.  That walk and conversation was life-changing and became part of the "real me".  I'm not the same person I was in my 20's or 40's or even a year ago.  I'd like to think I'm better for the things I've been through, and can be a better person to others for it.

@Gemma92


1999:  Paroxetine (20mg). Age 16. 2007-2008: Fluoxetine (Prozac) for 1.5 years (age 25) Citalopram 20mg 2002-2005, 2009: Escitalopram (20mg), 2 weeks, (age 26) (adverse manic reaction)/*Valium 5mg/Temazepam 10mg 2010: Mirtazipine (Remeron)( do not remember dosage) 2010, 5 months.                     

2010-2017: Citalopram (20mg) (age 27 to 34) 2016: i.1st Sept- 31st Oct Citalopram 10mg , ii.1st November 2017-30th November 2017, Citalopram 5mg iii.1st December 2017- 4th February 2018, Citalopram 0mg, iv.5th February 2018- March 2018 Citalopram 5mg (10mg every other day) 28th February- tried titration of 5mg ( some adverse effects)

2018: 1st March 2018- 1st June Citalopram 10 mg (tablet form) /started titration 8mg , then 7 mg.2018: June 15th- 10th July Citalopram 10 mg pill every other day 2018: 10th July - 13th Sept Citalopram- 0mg  (CBD oil first month of 0mg, passiflora on and off) 2018 13th Sept Citalopram  2mg ,  approx 16th Sept 4mg , approx 25th Sept 6mg held.  2019: 11 Feb 19: 7mg (instant bad rxn) 12 Feb 19 6mg held 1 May 19 5.4mg held 5 Oct 19 5.36mg 22 Oct 19 5.29mg 30 Oct 19 5.23mg 4/NOV/19 5.18mg 12 Nov 19 5.08mg 20 Nov 19 4.77mg

(Herbal/Supplements since 1st September: Omega Fish Oil 1200mg, 663mg of EPA- 2 tablets a day, magnesium and magnesium bath salts)

I did not die, and yet I lost life’s breath
- Dante

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Cigale

Thank you @mstimc for sharing your insights. You have given me hope as I try and stabilize from WDs. Every day I wake up and feel like a shadow of my former confident, joyous self. I want ME back, and yet I know that I will never be who I was yesterday, last week, last year. And that is okay. I have been scarred from this awful experience, but I will heal and come out stronger, and hopefully wiser. I am so grateful for this community and people like you who are willing to open up and share your wisdom.


2008-2016 - Lexapro 10 mg, tapered to 2.5 mg over one year then CT
Feb 2, 2019 to July 24, 2019 - restart Lexapro 5 mg; July 25, 2019 increase Lexapro 10 mg
Nov 20, 2019 to Dec 11, 2019 - way too fast taper from Lexapro 10 mg to 7.5 mg to 5 mg to 0
Dec 12, 2019 to Feb 4, 2020 - drug free until horrible WD hit
Feb 5, 2020 to Feb 16, 2020 - started Paxil 10 mg, resulted in very bad reaction
Feb 18, 2020 - current - reinstate Lexapro 5 mg to stabilize before taper

 

daily meditation 10-40 minutes, yoga 30 minutes; biweekly CBT & ACT therapy

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mstimc

Thank you Cigale.  You can be confident and joyous and all the others things you were, plus, as you say, wiser and stronger for the experience.  I also like to think its made me more resilient in other areas of my life, too.  Thin gs that used to bother me don't seem as important or traumatic now.  Even the current crisis in't tripping me up too badly. The whole world is in the same boat, after all.


Tim C

Started Paxil for GAD in 1999

Unsuccessful taper attempt in 2006

Paxilprogress helped with a successful taper completed in 2009

Using therapy and CBT to manage my anxiety

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