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This brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for sharing!

MarieR

started 20 mg escitalopram 2011

failed CT attempt 2014 (4 months off)

back on 20 mg escitalopram 2014

began too fast taper (dr. recommendation, didn't know better) Jan. 2019

Taper: 3/4 of pill 4 weeks, 1/2 of pill 2 weeks and 1/4 of pill for 2 weeks

Off meds Mar. 7, 2019

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@elbee Thanks for posting this, and congratulations.  You are an inspiration.

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 1986-1991 CT, soon reinstated.  CT 2000. RI 1 mg 2011-2016.  Sept. 2016  0.625mg X 3

Nov.27, 2020, 7-week Ativan-Valium crossover + change to one 18.75mg dose, w/1 month hold.

Feb. 9, 2021, begin 10% every 4 weeks taper.  Current dose as of March 22: 14.4mgai.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986.  Jan. 2016 began every 3-weeks 10% taper, down to 16mgai (0.44mgpw).  Aug 2016, discovered SA, holding at 16mg.  Taper is 78% complete.  

  

Supplements: omega, 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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Amazing!! Congrats and all the best in continued healing :)!!! 

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!!!! 

2021 - Feb. 12 - 24 months off paroxetine. I have minor challenges now. Tinnitus/Headaches are still around but are reduced by a massive amount. 

 

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Elbee-- it has been an amazing experience to be involved with your journey from the outside. Thank you for taking the time to put such thought into writing your success story to share that journey with us. I am so excited for your new life, direction and inner peace and wish you many more successful years.

 

Brassmonkey

20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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Congratulation. You've done a great job. :)

0 - 0 - 0 since 08.07.2018, 1 - 0 - 0 = 0,11 mg  since 21.05.2018, 2 - 0 - 0 = 0,22 mg since 01.05.2018, 3 - 0 - 0 = 0,33 mg since 09.04.2018, 3 - 1 - 0 = 0,45 mg since  04.03.2018, 3 - 2 - 0 = 0,56mg since 30.01.2018, 3 - 3 - 0 = 0,6666mg since 29.12.2017,  4 - 3 - 0 = 0,777mg since 18.09.2017, 4 - 4 - 0 = 0,8888 mg since 02.09.2017 

Cymbalta 120 mg 2011 - 2013. July 2013 I started to weaning off Cymbalta. 5 - 10 % from the last dose every 4 weeks, sometimes I must wait longer for the next reducting step. 

(Summer 2011  burn out with a severe depressive episode)

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Thank you for your amazing story I have followed your journey and got lots of hope from you. I am still suffering with very bad anxiety 4 years out now. Last two years have had a very hard emotional time and it's still going on and has no doubt delayed my healing. I feel worse now then ever sadly. 

If you have any help with chronic anxiety tips it would be great. 

I really don't know how to get better any more and feeling pretty broken. 

So happy you are doing well. 

Waves 

Various antipressants from 1991 to 2016, Sertraline and many switches over the years.

Last AD's taken:

Citalopram for two weeks only May 2016  to June 2016, last AD taken and CT'd.

2012 to May 2016 Duloxitine 60mg. Doctor switched to Citalopram 20mg May 2016.

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Wonderful success story, Elbee, and so beautiful written! Thank you for sharing your journey to healing with us. 

Drug free May 22, 2015 after 30 years of neuroleptics, benzos, z-drugs, so-called "anti"-depressants, and amphetamines 

 

My Success Story:  Shep's Success: "Leaving Plato's Cave"

 

And what is good, Phaedrus, and what is not good — need we ask anyone to tell us these things? ~ Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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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@MarieR @Cocopuffz17 @Pina thanks for taking the time to read my success story, and for sharing your well wishes 👍🙂

 

@Gridley @brassmonkey @Shep thank you again for all of your support, inspiration, and courage over the years! I appreciate all you've done, and thank you for dropping by to read my success story. You are all saving lives 🙏❤️

 

@waves12 thank you too, for reading and witnessing my story. I'm sorry to hear you are still struggling with anxiety. As I'm sure you know, there are many "tips" that can and do help relieve anxiety in the short term, but I never found any magic bullets that "cure" it. For me, it's been a matter of fundamentally changing how it is I care for myself not only physically, but intellectually, emotionally and spiritually, too. What in my story can you relate to in how it is you've approached caring for yourself . . . emotionally in particular? Can you relate to the idea of having an inner critic? 

 

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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What a beautiful story and very beautiful closure to your journey. 
Thank you so much for sharing!

PREVIOUS medications and discontinuations: Have been on medications since 1996. 

 Valium, Gabapentin, Lamictal and Prilosec from 2000 to 2015 with a fast taper by a psychiatrist.

 Liquid Lexapro Nov, 2016 to 31-March, 2019 Lexapro free!!! (total Lexapro taper was 4 years-started with pill form)

---CURRENT MEDICATIONS:Supplements:Milk Thistle, Metamucil, Magnesium Citrate, Vitamin D3, Levothyroxine

 Xanax 1mg three times a day June, 2000 to 19-September, 2020 Went from .150 grams (average weight of 1 Xanax) three times a day to .003 grams three times a day.

19-September, 2020 Xanax free!!! (total Xanax taper was 15-1/2 months-1-June, 2019-19-September, 2020)

 

 

I am not a medical professional. The suggestions I make are based on personal experience.

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Thanks for reading my story and for your kind words @Frogie  ☺️

 

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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Dear Elbee,

Every success story is unique, inspiring and admirable but have to say that I feel yours most deeply... I have been following your posts since I have joined here. I have related to your process most because I myself am doing double work. For some time now I feel stuck and discouraged, on the point of quiting everything. Maybe I found this now not by accident or at least at important point in my process. I was wondering how you are and I am more than happy for you. Not only have you managed so much so well and I know the hardship, fear, confusion, pain.... but feels like you really experienced and know what a true Fenix is... respect and I wish you well in the future...

Thank you for all your writings and wisdom,  I hope it's okay to connect with you in the future for some advice and guidance.

 

 

2000 - 2010 variety of SSRI and Valium ( Prozac mostly 20 mg, poop out)// 2010 -2015 new variety and cocktails, Seroquel ( CT), Zoloft (CT), Lexapo

2015 - Lexapo CT, WD - hell on earth for 6 months, almost hospitalized but instead, trying out new drugs( Brintilex, Valdoxan, Abilify ),"stable" on Effexor XR 150 mg, Seroquel 75, Lamictal 100 mg, Valium 4 x 0,5 mg   

2016 - CT Lamictal, CT Seroquel, reducing Effexor XR, Valium and Clonopin occasionally

2017  - Effexor 56 mg ( 37.5 + 75 mg every second day), starting Remeron 30 mg in February

2017 Nov 10 - Effexor 37,5 mg ( dropping the 75mg every second day), Remeron 25 mg 

2017 Dec, 25 - Effexor 37,5 mg, 20 mg Remeron // 2018 Mid Feb - Effexor 37,5 mg, 15 mg Remeron // 2018 March, April -  Hold

2018 May 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 13 mg // 2018 June 15 -  Effexor 37,5 mg Remeron 11mg // 2018 July 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 9 mg //  2018 Aug 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 7,5 mg // 2018 Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec Hold

2019 Jan 10 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 6,75 mg // 2019 Feb 20 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 5,5 mg // 2019 March 25 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 4,9 mg // 2019 April 22 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 4,5 mg // 2019 May 6  - Effexor 37,5mg, Remeron 4,2 mg // 2019 June, July, August, Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec - Hold

2020 Jan 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 4,1 mg // Feb 15- Effexor  37,5 mg, Remeron 4 mg // Mar 15 -  Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.9 mg // April & May Hold 

June 1 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3,8 mg // June 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.7 mg // July 1-  Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.6 mg // July 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.5 mg // August 1 - Effexor 37,5 mg // Remeron 3.4.// August 15 - Effexor 37,5 m, Remeron 3.3 mg // Sept Hold// October 1 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3,2 mg  // October 15 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3,1 mg // November 1 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3 mg // November 10 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 2,9 mg // November 20 Effexor 37,5 mg,  Remeron 2,8 mg   

Supplements :  400 mg magnesium and 1000 mg Vit C  in the evening, stopped the 3000 mg of fish oil in November

 

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@Musa thank you for witnessing my healing by reading my story, and thank you for sharing your kind words. Out of the ashes . . . yes, my life very much feels that way, I appreciate that metaphor. 

 

I know that place of doubt, frustration, exhaustion . . . numbness. In that stuckness, sometimes, I've felt underlying urges to both shake my fists in the air and scream, and fall to my knees and sob. The internal stifling silence is what keeps me stuck. At these times, I've tried to connect with the scared little boy inside me, and let him know "It's OK." It's OK to feel whatever feelings are stuck inside, and to let them out. It's OK to feel sad to be in this painful place. It's OK to feel angry that I was hurt by people who were supposed to have my best interests in mind. It's OK to be scared, because withdrawal and all it's effects are scary. 

 

And once that little boy inside me knows it's OK to feel, whether the feelings arise or not, I look for the next best steps. Maybe all I can do at that moment is to drink a glass of water. But I affirm myself for having got up to drink the water. Maybe I need to take a soothing bath, or journal, or call a recovery friend, or go for a drive, or lightly distract myself with a movie. As I listen to that little boy inside me, he tells me what I need. When I listen to him and act on his behalf, I feel better . . . I feel less stuck. 

 

Maybe there's a little boy or girl inside you that has something to say?

I'm open to connecting. Connecting is how we heal. 

 

Go gently Musa 🙏❤️

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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13 minutes ago, elbee said:

@Musa thank you for witnessing my healing by reading my story, and thank you for sharing your kind words. Out of the ashes . . . yes, my life very much feels that way, I appreciate that metaphor. 

 

I know that place of doubt, frustration, exhaustion . . . numbness. In that stuckness, sometimes, I've felt underlying urges to both shake my fists in the air and scream, and fall to my knees and sob. The internal stifling silence is what keeps me stuck. At these times, I've tried to connect with the scared little boy inside me, and let him know "It's OK." It's OK to feel whatever feelings are stuck inside, and to let them out. It's OK to feel sad to be in this painful place. It's OK to feel angry that I was hurt by people who were supposed to have my best interests in mind. It's OK to be scared, because withdrawal and all it's effects are scary. 

 

And once that little boy inside me knows it's OK to feel, whether the feelings arise or not, I look for the next best steps. Maybe all I can do at that moment is to drink a glass of water. But I affirm myself for having got up to drink the water. Maybe I need to take a soothing bath, or journal, or call a recovery friend, or go for a drive, or lightly distract myself with a movie. As I listen to that little boy inside me, he tells me what I need. When I listen to him and act on his behalf, I feel better . . . I feel less stuck. 

 

Maybe there's a little boy or girl inside you that has something to say?

I'm open to connecting. Connecting is how we heal. 

 

Go gently Musa 🙏❤️

Elbee....spot on, this is exactly what I would like to connect about. My little boy has so much to say, it's hard to listen to him in strong WD and find meaning in all that pain. When I find some peace and clarity in this wave, I'll write to you. 

Thank you and take care

M

2000 - 2010 variety of SSRI and Valium ( Prozac mostly 20 mg, poop out)// 2010 -2015 new variety and cocktails, Seroquel ( CT), Zoloft (CT), Lexapo

2015 - Lexapo CT, WD - hell on earth for 6 months, almost hospitalized but instead, trying out new drugs( Brintilex, Valdoxan, Abilify ),"stable" on Effexor XR 150 mg, Seroquel 75, Lamictal 100 mg, Valium 4 x 0,5 mg   

2016 - CT Lamictal, CT Seroquel, reducing Effexor XR, Valium and Clonopin occasionally

2017  - Effexor 56 mg ( 37.5 + 75 mg every second day), starting Remeron 30 mg in February

2017 Nov 10 - Effexor 37,5 mg ( dropping the 75mg every second day), Remeron 25 mg 

2017 Dec, 25 - Effexor 37,5 mg, 20 mg Remeron // 2018 Mid Feb - Effexor 37,5 mg, 15 mg Remeron // 2018 March, April -  Hold

2018 May 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 13 mg // 2018 June 15 -  Effexor 37,5 mg Remeron 11mg // 2018 July 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 9 mg //  2018 Aug 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 7,5 mg // 2018 Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec Hold

2019 Jan 10 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 6,75 mg // 2019 Feb 20 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 5,5 mg // 2019 March 25 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 4,9 mg // 2019 April 22 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 4,5 mg // 2019 May 6  - Effexor 37,5mg, Remeron 4,2 mg // 2019 June, July, August, Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec - Hold

2020 Jan 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 4,1 mg // Feb 15- Effexor  37,5 mg, Remeron 4 mg // Mar 15 -  Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.9 mg // April & May Hold 

June 1 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3,8 mg // June 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.7 mg // July 1-  Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.6 mg // July 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.5 mg // August 1 - Effexor 37,5 mg // Remeron 3.4.// August 15 - Effexor 37,5 m, Remeron 3.3 mg // Sept Hold// October 1 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3,2 mg  // October 15 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3,1 mg // November 1 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3 mg // November 10 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 2,9 mg // November 20 Effexor 37,5 mg,  Remeron 2,8 mg   

Supplements :  400 mg magnesium and 1000 mg Vit C  in the evening, stopped the 3000 mg of fish oil in November

 

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Did you have pssd?

01.12.2018 - 01.03.2019 - Took sertraline and than fluvosamine for major depression. 

 

Got SEVERE PSSD (no libido, no erections, pleasureless orgasma, total genital anesthesia, emotional numbness, lost of personality)

 

No wave and windows, no improvement so far. Just lije 1-2% in numbness in first two months post quitting. 

 

Im suicidal because of pssd. I dont believe in recovery since my state didnt improve in any significant way.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi @Naczoz. I had sexual side effects the whole time while taking Zoloft. As I got off of it, my sexual energy in general has increased and all function has been normal. 

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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Loved reading this ❤️

Started Lamictal and Brintellix in November 2015

May 2016 Discontinued Lamictal 100 to 50 and then stopped completely.

October 20, 2016 discontinued Brintellex 10 to 5 then went from 5 to 0 on November 10, 2016.

 

Currently off all antidepressants

 

Current Supplements:  L-Theanine, Natural Progesterone, L-Methylfolate, Vitamin D, Omega-3's, Probiotic

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@elbee what kind of sexuall side effects did u had? and how long it sustained after qutting sertraline?

01.12.2018 - 01.03.2019 - Took sertraline and than fluvosamine for major depression. 

 

Got SEVERE PSSD (no libido, no erections, pleasureless orgasma, total genital anesthesia, emotional numbness, lost of personality)

 

No wave and windows, no improvement so far. Just lije 1-2% in numbness in first two months post quitting. 

 

Im suicidal because of pssd. I dont believe in recovery since my state didnt improve in any significant way.

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Thank you for sharing your story. It gives hope.

Like you I am 15 months off now but after a quite fast taper, still struggling with severe fatigue and rare panic attacs.

I agree I also have learnt a lot during this process - Self care, Spirituality, Self- and Life improvement techniques, Mindfulness, Meditation, Acceptance, Philosophy, Compassion, Desire to learn more ...

I am still at the beginning of my road and I still have to learn a lot...Trauma care (bullying), Spirituality, Self acceptance. etc.
Probably I will still suffer a lot  in the near futre but I cannot give up now. There is hope for better and maybe all the pain were there for a reason..


You have gone through so much and still found your way. Congratulations.

AD since 2006 (16 years old). Prescribed on Citalopram, Fluoxetin(2x), Opipramol, Paroxetin. All with CT except Paroxetin (fast taper).
Last medication was Paroxetin for 3 years. Tapered fast:
- October 2018: 10mg -> 5mg
- December 2018: 5mg -> 2,5mg
- February 2019: 2,5mg -> 1,25mg
- March 2019: 1,25mg -> 1 mg
Since May 2019: 0 mg

Supplements:
- Omega 3 (2200mg EPA + DHA )                  - Vitamin D 2000 i.u. and Vitamin K2 50 mcg            - Vitamin B12 (100mcg)
- Zinc (4 mg)                                                    - Magnesium-Bisglycinat (100mg elemantal Mg)      - Folat (50mcg)
23 months off and improvements but still setbacks. Major symptom now is fatigue.  Link to my introduction: https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/topic/21876-malon-14-years-of-ssri-since-youth-last-was-paroxetin/?tab=comments#comment-486450

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On 8/28/2020 at 3:31 PM, elbee said:

@MarieR @Cocopuffz17 @Pina thanks for taking the time to read my success story, and for sharing your well wishes 👍🙂

 

@Gridley @brassmonkey @Shep thank you again for all of your support, inspiration, and courage over the years! I appreciate all you've done, and thank you for dropping by to read my success story. You are all saving lives 🙏❤️

 

@waves12 thank you too, for reading and witnessing my story. I'm sorry to hear you are still struggling with anxiety. As I'm sure you know, there are many "tips" that can and do help relieve anxiety in the short term, but I never found any magic bullets that "cure" it. For me, it's been a matter of fundamentally changing how it is I care for myself not only physically, but intellectually, emotionally and spiritually, too. What in my story can you relate to in how it is you've approached caring for yourself . . . emotionally in particular? Can you relate to the idea of having an inner critic? 

 

I don't think I care for myself enough and notice I don't do enough at home. Not exercising due to fear of it around anxiety and have health anxiety in the mix so became afraid to exercise and now body is suffering. Sadly I live alone and don't have many people around to see and the isolation is very hard. My whole fears and anxiety have robbed my life now and just a shell. It's been a long time to feel this loss of life. I am almost housebound with anxiety and it is very sad as I was such an active person 4 years ago. I have had a lot of trauma from childhood and whilst working  through this I feel no better.  You have put alot into your recovery and see you were able to take trips and explore many things. I am too scared to leave the house. I am in a 12 step programme too and even this is not helping me. Anxiety and depression stopped me going to mtgs before covid and just don't feel a part of the group. My lonely life is not helping and if I am honest it feels this is what is really wrong but  I can't burden my grown up son's with this as they have their own lives. The loneliness feels it will break me. I am  in my 50's and feel life is over. Surely this can't be how if ends? I felt inspired about your story but I guess we are different people. 

Various antipressants from 1991 to 2016, Sertraline and many switches over the years.

Last AD's taken:

Citalopram for two weeks only May 2016  to June 2016, last AD taken and CT'd.

2012 to May 2016 Duloxitine 60mg. Doctor switched to Citalopram 20mg May 2016.

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Longroadhome

@elbee

 

Your story made me very emotional 

it’s beautifully written from the heart. 
Well done you are amazing.  good luck in your career and life. Go live it to the full. I’ll look forward to one day reading your full story.
until then  I shall re read your success story often to remind me there is life waiting  to be lived,  I just need to keep going to get there . 
Bless you.   

October 2004 Paxil 20mg - October 2018, 14 years

Nov 2018 Pregabalin -  2x50 mg a day to help with Paxil WD

August 2019 Pregabalin -  2 x 25mg a day 

April 2020 Pregabalin -  45mg, May 40mg, June 35mg, beg July 30mg, end July 25mg, Aug 24mg 

October 2018 Paxil - 20 mg, November 15mg, December 10mg  

February 2019 Paxil- 7.5mg crashed, February 8.5mg, Nov 8mg 

March 2020 Paxil - 7.2mg, April 6.5mg, May 5.9mg, June 5.4mg, July 4.8mg, December 4.5mg 

Jan 2021 Paxil - 4mg, February 3.6mg, March 3.2mg

 

these dates are approximate 

 

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@Sheera thanks for stopping by and I'm glad the story was good for you ❤️

 

@Malon wow, you've been working on many changes in your life too! Fifteen months in some ways feels like a long time to me, but change and healing with these drugs is so slow, and so much patience is required. I still struggle sometimes too, for sure. And accepting how slow things go is still sometimes a challenge. I too have tried to look at my pain in the context of purpose, and I can see that one purpose has been my own self-improvement (at some pretty tremendous costs!). I hope moving forward, that my pain and process will be of some benefit to others, too, perhaps. On good days, I can see purposes like this more clearly. On not-so-good days, that perspective can get clouded and murky. thank you for reading my story, and for sharing your thoughts. ❤️

 

On 8/30/2020 at 6:52 AM, waves12 said:

I don't think I care for myself enough and notice I don't do enough at home. Not exercising due to fear of it around anxiety and have health anxiety in the mix so became afraid to exercise and now body is suffering. Sadly I live alone and don't have many people around to see and the isolation is very hard. My whole fears and anxiety have robbed my life now and just a shell. It's been a long time to feel this loss of life. I am almost housebound with anxiety and it is very sad as I was such an active person 4 years ago. I have had a lot of trauma from childhood and whilst working  through this I feel no better.  You have put alot into your recovery and see you were able to take trips and explore many things. I am too scared to leave the house. I am in a 12 step programme too and even this is not helping me. Anxiety and depression stopped me going to mtgs before covid and just don't feel a part of the group. My lonely life is not helping and if I am honest it feels this is what is really wrong but  I can't burden my grown up son's with this as they have their own lives. The loneliness feels it will break me. I am  in my 50's and feel life is over. Surely this can't be how if ends? I felt inspired about your story but I guess we are different people. 

 

@waves12 As I mentioned in my story, each of us is definitely different - a unique snowflake - and we each have our own healing path. I asked you what in my story can you relate to, because I thought we might have some similarities, as well as differences. I thought perhaps you might be able to relate to the idea of having an inner critic. I know my "inner critic" can tell me how different my situation is, that no one is like me or understands me, and how I am uniquely broken . . . probably moreso than anyone else. It tells me all the things I'm not doing right and how I should be doing more, and faster. It tells me how impossible and insurmountable everything is, and asks why it's worth even trying. It tells me no one really wants to be around me, and how I am a burden to everyone who comes close. It tells me if someone does want to be around me, it's because I'm fooling them and they don't know the "real" me. It reminds me of everything I can't do like I used to do when I wasn't focused on healing my wounds, and it tells me I will never regain any of those abilities. My critic is all-or-nothing thinking, and judgment that always takes me to the same places: shame and/or blame. 

 

You mentioned you are too scared to leave the house. I honestly don't know how I was able to go on that long trip I took. I think I was in such a state of stuck desperation I felt like if I didn't do something big I was going to die. So I put my head down and clenched my jaw and did what I had always done in life . . . pushed hard and found a way. During the worst of my withdrawal process, I was actually intensely agoraphobic and often didn't leave the house for days. In this sense, that road trip I took was counterproductive in my healing path and probably mostly "critic" driven.

 

With 12 Step programs, I tried AA and ran screaming from the rooms. I went to Alanon, and it felt like I was in a room with people who were disconnected in ways that were way too similar to my parents. ACA turned out to be a completely different 12 Step program for me, focused on trauma recovery much more than addictions recovery . . . and focused on healing through feeling much more than cognitive/behavioral approaches. One focus of ACA is coming out of isolation . . . not only physical isolation, but emotional isolation. For many adult children, this is one of the hardest things imaginable. None of this came easy to me, and all of it has been a process of finding small, incremental next best steps. 

 

I'm really glad you felt inspired with my story, and yes we are no doubt different people. But for me, recovery has involved looking at similarities in addition to differences. Similarities bring possibilities of authentic connection . . . perhaps the most important thing I had been missing my whole life. ❤️

 

@Longroadhome thank you for reading my story, and for leaving such a heartfelt comment. There is definitely more life waiting to be lived as our recovery processes slowly inch forward. I'm also finding there is more life to be lived in the moments I can stay compassionately connected with the most tender parts of myself. If you do come back to read this again, consider dropping a note from time to time, OK? Go gently 🙏❤️

 

Edited by elbee

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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Again @elbee - what kind of sexuall dysfunctions did u have?

01.12.2018 - 01.03.2019 - Took sertraline and than fluvosamine for major depression. 

 

Got SEVERE PSSD (no libido, no erections, pleasureless orgasma, total genital anesthesia, emotional numbness, lost of personality)

 

No wave and windows, no improvement so far. Just lije 1-2% in numbness in first two months post quitting. 

 

Im suicidal because of pssd. I dont believe in recovery since my state didnt improve in any significant way.

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Longroadhome

Maybe Albee chooses not to answer this question and we must respect that. 

October 2004 Paxil 20mg - October 2018, 14 years

Nov 2018 Pregabalin -  2x50 mg a day to help with Paxil WD

August 2019 Pregabalin -  2 x 25mg a day 

April 2020 Pregabalin -  45mg, May 40mg, June 35mg, beg July 30mg, end July 25mg, Aug 24mg 

October 2018 Paxil - 20 mg, November 15mg, December 10mg  

February 2019 Paxil- 7.5mg crashed, February 8.5mg, Nov 8mg 

March 2020 Paxil - 7.2mg, April 6.5mg, May 5.9mg, June 5.4mg, July 4.8mg, December 4.5mg 

Jan 2021 Paxil - 4mg, February 3.6mg, March 3.2mg

 

these dates are approximate 

 

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@Naczoz I'm not going to go into the details of all the symptoms I experienced in my withdrawal process. What I can say is that the myriad sexual side-effects I encountered while being on the drugs for 25+ years, and those I experienced during the detox process to get off of them, seem to have all mostly resolved. It may be that others experience continued or perhaps even permanent effects, but that has not been my experience. For pssd, the symptoms can be varied and extensive. If you haven't found it already, I would recommend this thread:

 

. . . and this thread:

 

 

Edited by elbee

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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Well I did found it. And I have pssd for two years after qutting and no progress at all..

01.12.2018 - 01.03.2019 - Took sertraline and than fluvosamine for major depression. 

 

Got SEVERE PSSD (no libido, no erections, pleasureless orgasma, total genital anesthesia, emotional numbness, lost of personality)

 

No wave and windows, no improvement so far. Just lije 1-2% in numbness in first two months post quitting. 

 

Im suicidal because of pssd. I dont believe in recovery since my state didnt improve in any significant way.

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Thank you, elbee, your story means so much to me, and that you have taken the time to share it.  It heartens me to think of people like you entering the health care world.

I'm celebrating for you,

Arbor

Zoloft: 1995 - 2015

Prozac: 2015 - 2018 (tapered from 40mg x day on July 31 to 30mg on August 31 to 20mg on September 31 to 10mg October 31 to 0mg on  December 15, 2018

Gabapentin: 2016 to 2019  (tapered from 300mg x day to 150mg on August 31, 2019 to 75mg on September 15 to 50mg on September 31 to 25ishmg on October 15 to 0mg on December 1, 2019

Enalapril: 2010 - 2019

Lipitor: 2017 -2017

Metformin: 2000 - 2020

Liothyronine: 2007 - 2019

Levothyroxine: 2000 - 

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20 hours ago, Naczoz said:

Well I did found it. And I have pssd for two years after qutting and no progress at all..

 

@Naczoz I know how incredibly frustrating that a lack of healing can feel 😩 Opening to the grief of such loss can feel overwhelming. I hope greater healing comes your way, even if it is slow ❤️

 

@arbor Thanks for taking the time to read my story, and for sharing your encouraging words. It boosts my courage entering the health care world knowing that I have people like you in my corner ❤️

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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@elbee in your case did? after how many years since you quit you felt that you are healing? espesially from pssd and emotional numbness/anhedonia?

 

01.12.2018 - 01.03.2019 - Took sertraline and than fluvosamine for major depression. 

 

Got SEVERE PSSD (no libido, no erections, pleasureless orgasma, total genital anesthesia, emotional numbness, lost of personality)

 

No wave and windows, no improvement so far. Just lije 1-2% in numbness in first two months post quitting. 

 

Im suicidal because of pssd. I dont believe in recovery since my state didnt improve in any significant way.

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@Naczoz Coming out of emotional numbness took a lot of consistent work on my part over the past five or so years, and it's something I will continue to work on. As I shared in my story, I think EMDR with a skilled, compassionate trauma therapist helped, but more than anything, it has been the consistent day-in and day-out work I have been doing in the ACA program to open and release trapped emotions, trapped trauma and stored grief. As these things opened in layers over time, I had to adjust and learn to live more emotionally alive (self-care / reparenting). I fully believe that emotional awakening cannot happen in isolation, it happens through connection and community. For me, that community has primarily been here through this website, and through the ACA program. I also do not think it's coincidental that you asked about both a "sexual awakening" and "emotional awakening" in the same short post. I definitely feel that my emotional awakening has played a huge role in my sexual awakening. And to be clear, this awakening was NOT like a light switch that turned on. It was much more like a dimmer switch that very slowly "brightens" over time, and continues to be a source of increasing energy and illumination. 

 

My sense is that you are looking for me to tell you that everything is going to be OK, and at what point that will happen (based on what happened to me). Unfortunately, I'm not able to do that. I don't know what your future holds. I know you're probably scared, and frustrated, and perhaps angry. Of course you are. What we experience in these ways is intensely painful! What I can say is that as long as I was fixated on a "happily ever after" moment in my future when everything would be OK, I was often neglecting the small steps I needed take moment to moment that would actually get me to a better place. My recovery hasn't been a collection of a few "magic moments" . . . but  hundreds and thousands of incremental next best steps. 

Edited by elbee

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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I've been in a wave for a few days. It's not a wave like I used to experience in completely debilitating ways, but I want to honestly acknowledge that I still have rough stretches. I can identify some of my triggers that have been activated, and I'm doing my best to gently work with them . . . and keep taking next best steps. As I wrote in my story, I am still healing. 

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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Hi Elbee-- Sorry to hear about your getting hit with a wave. It's all part of the post "0" experience. there will be some ups and downs for a while, but will get better as time goes along. Hang in there, it's all part of the healing process.

20 years on Paxil starting at 20mg and working up to 40mg. Sept 2011 started 10% every 6 weeks taper (2.5% every week for 4 weeks then hold for 2 additional weeks), currently at 7.9mg. Oct 2011 CTed 15oz vodka a night, to only drinking 2 beers most nights, totally sober Feb 2013.

Since I wrote this I have continued to decrease my dose by 10% every 6 weeks (2.5% every week for 4 weeks and then hold for an additional 2 weeks). I added in an extra 6 week hold when I hit 10mg to let things settle out even more. When I hit 3mgpw it became hard to split the drop into 4 parts so I switched to dropping 1mgpw (pill weight) every week for 3 weeks and then holding for another 3 weeks.  The 3 + 3 schedule turned out to be too harsh so I cut back to dropping 1mgpw every 4 weeks which is working better.

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can loose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general."  Stephen Hawking

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Elbee,

 

Sorry to hear it and I'm sending you a short line of support.

I think you've explained it very well to your self...and even more importantly comforted your self...yes, you are still healing. 

2000 - 2010 variety of SSRI and Valium ( Prozac mostly 20 mg, poop out)// 2010 -2015 new variety and cocktails, Seroquel ( CT), Zoloft (CT), Lexapo

2015 - Lexapo CT, WD - hell on earth for 6 months, almost hospitalized but instead, trying out new drugs( Brintilex, Valdoxan, Abilify ),"stable" on Effexor XR 150 mg, Seroquel 75, Lamictal 100 mg, Valium 4 x 0,5 mg   

2016 - CT Lamictal, CT Seroquel, reducing Effexor XR, Valium and Clonopin occasionally

2017  - Effexor 56 mg ( 37.5 + 75 mg every second day), starting Remeron 30 mg in February

2017 Nov 10 - Effexor 37,5 mg ( dropping the 75mg every second day), Remeron 25 mg 

2017 Dec, 25 - Effexor 37,5 mg, 20 mg Remeron // 2018 Mid Feb - Effexor 37,5 mg, 15 mg Remeron // 2018 March, April -  Hold

2018 May 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 13 mg // 2018 June 15 -  Effexor 37,5 mg Remeron 11mg // 2018 July 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 9 mg //  2018 Aug 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 7,5 mg // 2018 Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec Hold

2019 Jan 10 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 6,75 mg // 2019 Feb 20 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 5,5 mg // 2019 March 25 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 4,9 mg // 2019 April 22 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 4,5 mg // 2019 May 6  - Effexor 37,5mg, Remeron 4,2 mg // 2019 June, July, August, Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec - Hold

2020 Jan 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 4,1 mg // Feb 15- Effexor  37,5 mg, Remeron 4 mg // Mar 15 -  Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.9 mg // April & May Hold 

June 1 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3,8 mg // June 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.7 mg // July 1-  Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.6 mg // July 15 - Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3.5 mg // August 1 - Effexor 37,5 mg // Remeron 3.4.// August 15 - Effexor 37,5 m, Remeron 3.3 mg // Sept Hold// October 1 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3,2 mg  // October 15 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3,1 mg // November 1 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 3 mg // November 10 Effexor 37,5 mg, Remeron 2,9 mg // November 20 Effexor 37,5 mg,  Remeron 2,8 mg   

Supplements :  400 mg magnesium and 1000 mg Vit C  in the evening, stopped the 3000 mg of fish oil in November

 

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On 8/31/2020 at 1:56 AM, elbee said:

I thought perhaps you might be able to relate to the idea of having an inner critic. I know my "inner critic" can tell me how different my situation is, that no one is like me or understands me, and how I am uniquely broken . . . probably moreso than anyone else. It tells me all the things I'm not doing right and how I should be doing more, and faster. It tells me how impossible and insurmountable everything is, and asks why it's worth even trying. It tells me no one really wants to be around me, and how I am a burden to everyone who comes close. It tells me if someone does want to be around me, it's because I'm fooling them and they don't know the "real" me. It reminds me of everything I can't do like I used to do when I wasn't focused on healing my wounds, and it tells me I will never regain any of those abilities. My critic is all-or-nothing thinking, and judgment that always takes me to the same places: shame and/or blame. 

 

Elbee it was inspiring to hear your story, and I loved the way you described your struggle. It's really an inspiration.

 

The above passage stick out for me. I have recently completed my WD from Effexor and Citalopram, about 2 months ago. Fortunately, I've not had the severe side effects I've heard from others; though I do get the odd wave every fortnight or so. The real challenge, I feel, is with my inner critic, which you so eloquently described. There may be other contributory factors, but I can't say off the bat.

 

My problem is over the years of drug use I have turned into a recluse. And now I'm unable to break free of this behaviour. I try my best to shirk all responsibilities or pass them on to someone else: my wife, son, or just don't do it.

 

Also I am unable to come back into active life. I was a successful entrepreneur, on the way up, with ambitious plans. Well, my business has gone. And now with so many years wasted my 'inner critic' keeps telling me I'll never be able to reach the goals I set so many years ago = what's the point of even trying. Of course there is a plethora of additional factors to support the argument i.e. I am no longer young (in my 50s), I've lost the drive (true), why do it and put so much pressure on myself. You get the drift.

 

I'm not even sure why I'm talking about this here, like you said each struggle is unique. But I suppose I'm looking for equivalences from you. Perhaps there is some way we can quieten the inner critic. The problem, I feel, is that the inner critic was the same voice which gave/gives people like me the courage and motivation to start a business. Paradoxically it is now hindering the return to business and an active life, since this voice keeps comparing me to my peers, who have moved much further ahead. Not a noble thought, I know, but this is how the human mind works.

 

I realise I'm rambling. Would love to hear your thoughts.

2012- Citalopram 40- Axal 0.5mg  2017- Stopped Axal CT. No WD.

2017 - Effexor XR 75 mg.

For Epilepsy:1983 - Tegral 400 mg/day  2009 - Lumark 1000 mg/day- Biotim eyedrops for glaucoma.

27 April 2019 - Effexor XR taper started. 40 beads removed - 16% - 63mg20 May - 10% - 20 beads. 57mg / 3 June - 10% - 20 beads - 51mg / 18 July - 6% -10 beads - 48mg / 20 July - 7% -10 beads- 44.5mg/ 1 Sept - 75 mg alternate days = 37.5 mg/ 14 Sept - 75 mg every 3rd day = 25mg/  22 Sept - Effexor XR stopped.

27 Oct - Tegral = 300mg. Citalopram = 30 mg. Lumark = 500mg Busron = 10 mg. Somna = 2.5 mg

1-Jan 2020 Tegral 200mg BD- Citalopram 20mg OD- Lumark 500BD

25 Apr 2020 Tegral 200 mg BD- Citalopram alternate days 20 mg and 10 mg OD - Lumark 500BD

May June 2020 Dropped to 10 mg citalopram due to drug shortages.

Early July 2020: CT'ed citalopram - nonavailability of medicine. Tegral + Lumark remains same as before.

 

 

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Hi elbee

Just read your story and want to congratulate you on your many successes. Loved reading it, you are a true inspiration for me. Thank you.
Sorry to hear about your current wave, there is with out a doubt in my mind a wonderful window awaits you just around the corner.

All the best to you.

 

Prescribed Paxil 20 mg year 2000 for panic attacks.

Many attempts through out the years to quit.

2019 tapered from 20 mg to 10 mg. Got stuck there, decided to bridge with Fluoxetine. 
2020 March off Fluoxetine 

2020 Oct- nov started deteriorating, followed by severe crash. 2021 Reinstated fluoxetine by small amount, until I reach 9 mg (current) and stabilised. Holding 

 

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@brassmonkey and @Musa thanks for your support and encouragement. Like you said Brass, "windows and waves" outside the withdrawal experience are a part of life ("ups and downs"). And I also believe that while I am still healing, those "ups and downs" will be exacerbated and accentuated. I've discovered and developed some really helpful and important tools and practices through my withdrawal process, and they still serve we well today. Sometimes it's still tough though.

 

I was concerned that I had painted too rosy a picture in my success story, but when I went back to read my story while experiencing this wave, it all still feels very true for me. Life is overall easier now, and I'm so grateful. I can hold that space as true today even while feeling more shaky. And it's also true that at times life can still feel really challenging, and I have to be very careful not to overdo things, and to keep gently working with my triggers as they arise. 

My suggestions are not medical advice. They are my opinions based on my own experience, strength and hope.

You are in charge of your own medical / healing / recovery choices.

My success story |  My introduction thread

 

ZOLOFT FREE - COMPLETELY DRUG FREE 4/28/2019! - total time on 28+ years

BENZO FREE! 4/7/2018 - total time on 27+ years

REMERON FREE! 12/11/2016 - total time on 15 months

Caffeine & Nicotine Free 2014 / 2015 - smoked for 28 years

Alcohol Free 4/1/2014 - drank for 30 years

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