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Shrike

Struggling with making sense of past decisions

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Shrike

When I look back on some of the 'major life decisions' I made while I was 'spellbound' by all those psych drugs, I am filled with regret and even shame. Anyone else relate to this? These tides rush in, frequently in the mornings, and just crush me against the rocky shore. 

 

For example, I was in a management role at my last company and essentially demoted myself. I was so sick and frankly out of my mind that I thought it was the 'right' thing to do. The new role turned out to be a complete disaster that eventually drove me out of the company. I left on my own terms but I now wonder if I could have found a way to stay. I blame myself for not 'seeing' the complexity of executing a job move like that. I was so numb and disoriented by the drugs and WDs I just couldn't see anything clearly. Now looking back I wonder if I should have been more honest with the people I worked with about what I was going through. At the time, I didn't fully understand how powerful those drugs were and what havoc WDs cause on our interior lives. I thought I was just 'defective' and that it was 'all my fault' so I did the best I could and never told anyone what I was struggling with. 

 

Another example is while in the fog of ADs, we built a house that we really couldn't afford. My 'normal' alert systems were completely offline due to the drugs. If I had been in my right mind, I would have been able to feel the 'warning' signs like anxiety and such that could have informed my wisdom that 'maybe this ani't such a great idea' or 'slow down and think about this' but it was like I was mesmerized and totally fixated on accomplishing the task. I've not had suicidal thoughts that all the warnings talk about but I think these things were similarly spellbinding. Over so many years of those drugs, I didn't realize that I had become a different person. That person did a lot of things that I still can't understand...and yet wasn't that 'me'? If not, who the heck was it?

 

Part of what makes this journey off of drugs so hard is it can feel so 'unique' and lonely...

 

Any and all thoughts welcome. Thanks.

 

 


My records (and memory) are not good for the early years. I did the best I could to provide a summary below. Lexapro just stopped "working" on me a couple of different times so my Dr. just kept trying things. Eventually, the side effects were so horrendous and the drugs were not really working, so I concluded the 'cure' was worse than the 'disease'.

 

12 years total of SSRIs and SRNI use then 7 month break, then Mirtazapine for sleep

  • Lexapro - 2005 - 2009
  • Effexor - 2009 - 2012 (tried to get off, tapered down, quit for a few weeks)
  • Pristiq - 2012 - 2014
  • Lexapro - 2013 - 2016
  • Buspirone - 2013 - 2018 (30-60 mg)
  • Klonopin - 2013 - 2018 (1-3 mg)
  • Abilify - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Remeron - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Cymbalta - 2016 (seemed to start working but GI side effects were horrible)
  • Celexa - 2017 (few months - didn't "work")
  • Pristiq - 2017 (few months, made me switch to generic - didn't "work")
  • Fetzima - 2017 (few months - kinda worked but anxiety literally drove me crazy - obsessive thoughts)
  • Trintellenix - 2017  (felt like a psychotic break, fast taper [too fast] ended November 15, 2017)
  • No ADs - 7 months free of antidepressants (very glad I did it, but no sleep was agony - so desperate I surrendered to Mirtazapine prescription)
  • Slow methodical taper off of Clonazepam (~2017 - 2018)
  • Mirtazapine - June 2018 to present (started with 7.5 moved up about a month at a time to 45mg - stayed there til 2020) 
  • Currently tapering off of Mirtazapine at about 12mg now (learned that my super fast taper was too fast after finding SA so going slow on this last one)
  • Still in protracted withdrawal from all the other stuff but getting better (still 'injured' and impatient but so grateful to be getting my 'self' back...slowly...)

 

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arbor

Hi GregoryReboot,

 

Your anguish mirrors my own.  I'm new to the site, but from what I've been reading, regret is also a painful symptom of withdrawal.  My brain doesn't feel as if it's able to function in the area that provides mental perspective, calm, or cohesion.  Instead it feels as if a red hot poker were burning in the part that registers overwhelming dismay.  My thoughts keep returning to past incidents in which my actions now seem as if they were under the poisoned spell of the antidepressants.  Even then, I was feeling that something was terribly off with how I was behaving.  I want so much for us both (and for anyone else feeling what you've described so well) to get through and past this somehow.  I do believe you will.

Thank you for posting this.  I'm thinking of 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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Shrike

Thanks so much @arbor. You really do know what I'm talking about. I can feel it in your words. I can relate so much to how you describe not being able to find that elusive mental 'homeostasis' and how you knew something was 'off' even then. I remember that too. Have you ever seen the movie Inception by chance? That is what it's like trying to remember the 'dream'...it's like my life was a quiet radio in the background of my own existence WHILE I was living it?! It sounds psychotic to anyone who has not experienced ADs but that is what it was like. And then, speaking of movie metaphors. For me the 'exit' from ADs was very much like when Neo takes the red pill and unplugs from fake, but somewhat comfortable, world...indescribably 'shocking'.

 

Thanks too for the encouraging words. I know this will fade for you too. Keep on keep'n on. And post back if you want to keep this going, sounds like we have some common ground and our years of use line up pretty closely too.

 

G


My records (and memory) are not good for the early years. I did the best I could to provide a summary below. Lexapro just stopped "working" on me a couple of different times so my Dr. just kept trying things. Eventually, the side effects were so horrendous and the drugs were not really working, so I concluded the 'cure' was worse than the 'disease'.

 

12 years total of SSRIs and SRNI use then 7 month break, then Mirtazapine for sleep

  • Lexapro - 2005 - 2009
  • Effexor - 2009 - 2012 (tried to get off, tapered down, quit for a few weeks)
  • Pristiq - 2012 - 2014
  • Lexapro - 2013 - 2016
  • Buspirone - 2013 - 2018 (30-60 mg)
  • Klonopin - 2013 - 2018 (1-3 mg)
  • Abilify - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Remeron - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Cymbalta - 2016 (seemed to start working but GI side effects were horrible)
  • Celexa - 2017 (few months - didn't "work")
  • Pristiq - 2017 (few months, made me switch to generic - didn't "work")
  • Fetzima - 2017 (few months - kinda worked but anxiety literally drove me crazy - obsessive thoughts)
  • Trintellenix - 2017  (felt like a psychotic break, fast taper [too fast] ended November 15, 2017)
  • No ADs - 7 months free of antidepressants (very glad I did it, but no sleep was agony - so desperate I surrendered to Mirtazapine prescription)
  • Slow methodical taper off of Clonazepam (~2017 - 2018)
  • Mirtazapine - June 2018 to present (started with 7.5 moved up about a month at a time to 45mg - stayed there til 2020) 
  • Currently tapering off of Mirtazapine at about 12mg now (learned that my super fast taper was too fast after finding SA so going slow on this last one)
  • Still in protracted withdrawal from all the other stuff but getting better (still 'injured' and impatient but so grateful to be getting my 'self' back...slowly...)

 

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arbor

Hi GregoryReboot--

 

Thank you for this.  I haven't seen  Inception, but this awful experience with antidepressants feels both sci-fi and big-business.  Trying to figure out how to go forward (other than hour to hour) is really challenging.  I want to be part of the world but the current w/d symptoms magnify the slightest stress, so I am mainly hunkering down, and trying not to freak out about whether I'll ever recover.  I'm curious if you've finished tapering off of Mirtazine.  Has there been anything that helps you?  Do people around you understand what you've had to deal with.  I hope that they do and that it helps.

Yesterday, a Saturday, I was with friends.  During the Pandemic, it's a treat to get together.  Today, Sunday, is more solitary.  Before AD's, solitude was a gentle, savorable time.  That's changed with my blown brain.  I hope some day I can lose myself in a book or movie (or sleep) again.  Right now it's very easy for my mind to perseverate.  It wants to chew on all my failings.  I can't believe how kind the people here are, who have posted their progress and even recoveries.  I've pasted their testimonies all over my kitchen.

I hope all goes well for you today.

Warmly,

Arbor

 

(I love this cartoon from New Yorker)  I probably don't know how to load it right.image.jpeg.264094e3f354e1ca40a3e7d3a5e06eeb.jpeg

 

image.jpeg.264094e3f354e1ca40a3e7d3a5e06eeb.jpeg

 

"Publicly, we're still saying there are no side effects."

David. A. Epstein


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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ShiningLight
On 9/3/2020 at 9:59 AM, GregoryReboot said:

For example, I was in a management role at my last company and essentially demoted myself. I was so sick and frankly out of my mind that I thought it was the 'right' thing to do. The new role turned out to be a complete disaster that eventually drove me out of the company. I left on my own terms but I now wonder if I could have found a way to stay. I blame myself for not 'seeing' the complexity of executing a job move like that. I was so numb and disoriented by the drugs and WDs I just couldn't see anything clearly. Now looking back I wonder if I should have been more honest with the people I worked with about what I was going through. At the time, I didn't fully understand how powerful those drugs were and what havoc WDs cause on our interior lives. I thought I was just 'defective' and that it was 'all my fault' so I did the best I could and never told anyone what I was struggling with. 

 

Dealing with the impact of the drugs and associated problems at work is incredibly complex. I, too have had my share of these problems (more than my share). I also feel shame about it.

 

You could also spin it the other way: you made a noble move for the benefit of others. A lot of managers would just continue right on being a crappy boss (and probably be promoted for it in the process) 😩.

 

I hope you won't continue being so hard on yourself. I doubt it would have gone better if you had "outed" yourself. And, you may have earned a problematic "reputation" in the process. Even if you had taken job-protected leave due to your medical condition, that doesn't always go so well either.

 

The point is, workplaces are not very good at accommodating this type of disability. Bottom line. You didn't do anything wrong, but were struggling against unbeatable odds.


Now: Gabapentin 31 mg 4x/day =124 mg, 150 mg Zoloft am since 2004, 50 mg Trazodone bedtime.  Daily drug burden decreased from 2050 mg to 324 mg 🐢🐢

2020, Gabapentin each dose 4x/day: Aug 20 31 mg, Aug 18, 33 mg, July 29, 35 mg, July 23 38 mg, July 22 40 mg Jun 24 42 mg, Jun 15 44 mg, Jun 9 48 mg, May 22 50 mg, May 14 54 mg, May 7 56 mg, Apr 16 58 mg, Mar 28 60 mg, Mar 18 62 mg. Feb 26 64 mg. Feb 19, 66 mg. Jan 23, 70 mg.

2019 Dec 19, 72 mg. Nov 14 ,76 mg. Aug 8, 80 mg. Aug 6, 85 mg. Jul 26, 90 mg. Jul 11, 95 mg.

Jul 16 trazodone from 100 to 50 mg.

Jun 17-July 10 Slowly changed gab fr pill to liquid at same dose 100 mg 4x/d.

Apr 24 Stopped klon!!! 🌞 Apr 4  Decreased gaba to 400 mg (100 mg 4x/day)-Apr 4, 2019   0.25 klon

March 11  Klonopin .5 mg twice daily, varied dose til Apr 15. Started Klon fast taper 25%, short use

Mar 16, 450 mg gaba 3x/day cut 600 mg--not exact!--updose after learning w/d

Feb 20, 1800 mg gabapentin; MD taper; off 3 days=mvt disorder & autonomic instability. July 2018 temazepam 15 mg 1-2; prn several x/wk til Jan/Feb 2019 when cold turkey, flu illness for months

July 2018 started gabapentin 100 3x/day; titrated up to 1800 mg (600 3x/day)

Buspar, I forget how much, 2 pills a day Jan 2017-July 2018 cold turkey

*I speak from my experience. Nothing I say is medical advice. I'm not a doctor.

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Shrike

Thank you @arbor and sorry it has taken me a few days. I don't track this site everyday as in the early days of my recovery it almost became too much of a good thing but now that I am stable-ish, I'd like to re-engage a bit. I hear you on:

 

Quote

Trying to figure out how to go forward (other than hour to hour) is really challenging. I want to be part of the world but the current w/d symptoms magnify the slightest stress, so I am mainly hunkering down, and trying not to freak out about whether I'll ever recover. 

 

I don't have a silver bullet, but one thing I have to constantly remind myself of is to 'be patient'. I didn't get into this mess overnight and it sure as crap won't be 'over it' that quickly either. One of the hard parts for me was, and still is, looking around and seeing what other people 'did' with the 12 years that I was a walking zombie. All the missed opportunities to work through hard stuff and grow makes me feel hopelessly 'behind' at times - in the early days it was overwhelming and surely fueled a sort of rebound depression. But the point is, YOU WILL RECOVER! Heck, you are recovering now. I mean think of where you were say 10 years ago, I'm guessing you are happier being 'awake' and more human again right? It's a long road to be sure, but just like in AA, 1 day at a time really is key. It helps me to look back further than a couple of years to get perspective on how far I've come. Even with what feels like a long way to go, in my clear moments, I'm fregg'n thrilled to be here! I'm alive again! To live is to grow and to grow is to change. I heard that awhile back and it helps me keep things in perspective. There is no static existence - in a way that is what we have left behind.

 

Quote

I'm curious if you've finished tapering off of Mirtazine. 

 

Not yet but getting close. Down to about 12mg now. I really need to update my signature. I gotta tell ya, the Miratazipine taper has been a cakewalk compared to all the SSRIs, SNRIs, and benzos. Maybe it never 'took' to my brain chemistry the way those other drugs did. Thank God. 

 

Quote

Has there been anything that helps you? 

 

Kinda covered above but a couple of specific tools that have been helpful is I do a lot of 'mind mapping' to process all my thoughts and emotions. It is helpful to clear my head and also gives me something I can share with people to 'show' what I'm thinking. If you are interested, I am happy to show you some or even show you how. It's not hard, but sometimes helpful to get started with someone. Sort of related to that, I've been doing some 'timelining'. That has been very healing and helps me fully integrate my past into who I am now. I also do 3-4 workouts a week, that seems to help me burn off a lot of anxiety and such.

 

Quote

Do people around you understand what you've had to deal with. 

 

I'm not really sure. I have shared with my close network but I think ADs and withdrawal is so bizarre that it is hard for them to fully 'get it' although, they are most certainly supportive, most of the time I still feel like I'm pretty alone in this journey. 

 

Quote

Yesterday, a Saturday, I was with friends.  During the Pandemic, it's a treat to get together.  Today, Sunday, is more solitary.  Before AD's, solitude was a gentle, savorable time.  That's changed with my blown brain.  I hope some day I can lose myself in a book or movie (or sleep) again.  Right now it's very easy for my mind to perseverate.  It wants to chew on all my failings.  I can't believe how kind the people here are, who have posted their progress and even recoveries.  I've pasted their testimonies all over my kitchen.

 

This sounds awesome. So glad you're taking the opps to get with friends. I hear you loud and clear on what feels like 'the new brain'. I miss peaceful sleep and peace in general. In the early days, I could almost never achieve the flow of getting lost in something because my brain would not let me forget all the things I 'should' be doing, or how this is the wrong thing, or how bad I've blown 'everything'. This has gotten better. It's still a battle but I can do things I enjoy a bit more now and it feels great!

 

Hope you had a nice weekend and were able to find some moments of peace. Keep moving!

 

PS - Love the cartoon! Did you by chance screen that film they showed awhile back 'medicating normal'. That was pretty validating for me.

 


My records (and memory) are not good for the early years. I did the best I could to provide a summary below. Lexapro just stopped "working" on me a couple of different times so my Dr. just kept trying things. Eventually, the side effects were so horrendous and the drugs were not really working, so I concluded the 'cure' was worse than the 'disease'.

 

12 years total of SSRIs and SRNI use then 7 month break, then Mirtazapine for sleep

  • Lexapro - 2005 - 2009
  • Effexor - 2009 - 2012 (tried to get off, tapered down, quit for a few weeks)
  • Pristiq - 2012 - 2014
  • Lexapro - 2013 - 2016
  • Buspirone - 2013 - 2018 (30-60 mg)
  • Klonopin - 2013 - 2018 (1-3 mg)
  • Abilify - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Remeron - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Cymbalta - 2016 (seemed to start working but GI side effects were horrible)
  • Celexa - 2017 (few months - didn't "work")
  • Pristiq - 2017 (few months, made me switch to generic - didn't "work")
  • Fetzima - 2017 (few months - kinda worked but anxiety literally drove me crazy - obsessive thoughts)
  • Trintellenix - 2017  (felt like a psychotic break, fast taper [too fast] ended November 15, 2017)
  • No ADs - 7 months free of antidepressants (very glad I did it, but no sleep was agony - so desperate I surrendered to Mirtazapine prescription)
  • Slow methodical taper off of Clonazepam (~2017 - 2018)
  • Mirtazapine - June 2018 to present (started with 7.5 moved up about a month at a time to 45mg - stayed there til 2020) 
  • Currently tapering off of Mirtazapine at about 12mg now (learned that my super fast taper was too fast after finding SA so going slow on this last one)
  • Still in protracted withdrawal from all the other stuff but getting better (still 'injured' and impatient but so grateful to be getting my 'self' back...slowly...)

 

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Shrike

Thank you for your words @ShiningLight and sorry it has taken a few days...

 

Quote

Dealing with the impact of the drugs and associated problems at work is incredibly complex. I, too have had my share of these problems (more than my share). I also feel shame about it.

 

I'm not happy to hear you've had these problems but is comforting to know I'm not the only one.

 

Quote

You could also spin it the other way: you made a noble move for the benefit of others. A lot of managers would just continue right on being a crappy boss (and probably be promoted for it in the process) 😩.

 

Good point! I do try to reframe this, but that nagging 'voice' is so very persistent. I think is fading, just so slowly...

 

Quote

I hope you won't continue being so hard on yourself. I doubt it would have gone better if you had "outed" yourself. And, you may have earned a problematic "reputation" in the process.
 

The point is, workplaces are not very good at accommodating this type of disability. Bottom line. You didn't do anything wrong, but were struggling against unbeatable odds.

 

Thank you for this. I needed to hear this. 

 

Have you found any tricks to reposition or fight that shame? 

 

 


My records (and memory) are not good for the early years. I did the best I could to provide a summary below. Lexapro just stopped "working" on me a couple of different times so my Dr. just kept trying things. Eventually, the side effects were so horrendous and the drugs were not really working, so I concluded the 'cure' was worse than the 'disease'.

 

12 years total of SSRIs and SRNI use then 7 month break, then Mirtazapine for sleep

  • Lexapro - 2005 - 2009
  • Effexor - 2009 - 2012 (tried to get off, tapered down, quit for a few weeks)
  • Pristiq - 2012 - 2014
  • Lexapro - 2013 - 2016
  • Buspirone - 2013 - 2018 (30-60 mg)
  • Klonopin - 2013 - 2018 (1-3 mg)
  • Abilify - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Remeron - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Cymbalta - 2016 (seemed to start working but GI side effects were horrible)
  • Celexa - 2017 (few months - didn't "work")
  • Pristiq - 2017 (few months, made me switch to generic - didn't "work")
  • Fetzima - 2017 (few months - kinda worked but anxiety literally drove me crazy - obsessive thoughts)
  • Trintellenix - 2017  (felt like a psychotic break, fast taper [too fast] ended November 15, 2017)
  • No ADs - 7 months free of antidepressants (very glad I did it, but no sleep was agony - so desperate I surrendered to Mirtazapine prescription)
  • Slow methodical taper off of Clonazepam (~2017 - 2018)
  • Mirtazapine - June 2018 to present (started with 7.5 moved up about a month at a time to 45mg - stayed there til 2020) 
  • Currently tapering off of Mirtazapine at about 12mg now (learned that my super fast taper was too fast after finding SA so going slow on this last one)
  • Still in protracted withdrawal from all the other stuff but getting better (still 'injured' and impatient but so grateful to be getting my 'self' back...slowly...)

 

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ShiningLight
On 9/8/2020 at 9:14 AM, Shrike said:

I don't have a silver bullet, but one thing I have to constantly remind myself of is to 'be patient'. I didn't get into this mess overnight and it sure as crap won't be 'over it' that quickly either. One of the hard parts for me was, and still is, looking around and seeing what other people 'did' with the 12 years that I was a walking zombie. All the missed opportunities to work through hard stuff and grow makes me feel hopelessly 'behind' at times - in the early days it was overwhelming and surely fueled a sort of rebound depression.

 

Excellent points. I relate.


Now: Gabapentin 31 mg 4x/day =124 mg, 150 mg Zoloft am since 2004, 50 mg Trazodone bedtime.  Daily drug burden decreased from 2050 mg to 324 mg 🐢🐢

2020, Gabapentin each dose 4x/day: Aug 20 31 mg, Aug 18, 33 mg, July 29, 35 mg, July 23 38 mg, July 22 40 mg Jun 24 42 mg, Jun 15 44 mg, Jun 9 48 mg, May 22 50 mg, May 14 54 mg, May 7 56 mg, Apr 16 58 mg, Mar 28 60 mg, Mar 18 62 mg. Feb 26 64 mg. Feb 19, 66 mg. Jan 23, 70 mg.

2019 Dec 19, 72 mg. Nov 14 ,76 mg. Aug 8, 80 mg. Aug 6, 85 mg. Jul 26, 90 mg. Jul 11, 95 mg.

Jul 16 trazodone from 100 to 50 mg.

Jun 17-July 10 Slowly changed gab fr pill to liquid at same dose 100 mg 4x/d.

Apr 24 Stopped klon!!! 🌞 Apr 4  Decreased gaba to 400 mg (100 mg 4x/day)-Apr 4, 2019   0.25 klon

March 11  Klonopin .5 mg twice daily, varied dose til Apr 15. Started Klon fast taper 25%, short use

Mar 16, 450 mg gaba 3x/day cut 600 mg--not exact!--updose after learning w/d

Feb 20, 1800 mg gabapentin; MD taper; off 3 days=mvt disorder & autonomic instability. July 2018 temazepam 15 mg 1-2; prn several x/wk til Jan/Feb 2019 when cold turkey, flu illness for months

July 2018 started gabapentin 100 3x/day; titrated up to 1800 mg (600 3x/day)

Buspar, I forget how much, 2 pills a day Jan 2017-July 2018 cold turkey

*I speak from my experience. Nothing I say is medical advice. I'm not a doctor.

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ShiningLight
On 9/8/2020 at 9:21 AM, Shrike said:

Thank you for this. I needed to hear this. 

Have you found any tricks to reposition or fight that shame? 

 

 

 

I'm so glad it was helpful. I have a few thoughts about that. First of all, addressing these issues falls under the broad category of workplace communication, I think. And that is a skill that can be taught. If one is a better communicator and skillful at messaging, one may stand a better chance. I have recently realized I have some things to learn in that area, unfortunately (but fortunately I realized it).

 

Honestly, Shrike, I think "the system" is really stacked against those of us with disabilities. For me, I think the best way to reposition and fight that shame is to create my own business opportunities. I didn't want it to come to that because I am self supporting, so it's a bit scary. But I have come to think that the best thing to do is never put myself in that situation again. It takes an infinite amount of energy to try to exist in a system that doesn't value you as a person because you happen to have a disability. I know because I tried to mainstream myself for decades. I finally decided that I'd rather spend my time and energy creating something than trying to protect something that others would seek to destroy.  


Now: Gabapentin 31 mg 4x/day =124 mg, 150 mg Zoloft am since 2004, 50 mg Trazodone bedtime.  Daily drug burden decreased from 2050 mg to 324 mg 🐢🐢

2020, Gabapentin each dose 4x/day: Aug 20 31 mg, Aug 18, 33 mg, July 29, 35 mg, July 23 38 mg, July 22 40 mg Jun 24 42 mg, Jun 15 44 mg, Jun 9 48 mg, May 22 50 mg, May 14 54 mg, May 7 56 mg, Apr 16 58 mg, Mar 28 60 mg, Mar 18 62 mg. Feb 26 64 mg. Feb 19, 66 mg. Jan 23, 70 mg.

2019 Dec 19, 72 mg. Nov 14 ,76 mg. Aug 8, 80 mg. Aug 6, 85 mg. Jul 26, 90 mg. Jul 11, 95 mg.

Jul 16 trazodone from 100 to 50 mg.

Jun 17-July 10 Slowly changed gab fr pill to liquid at same dose 100 mg 4x/d.

Apr 24 Stopped klon!!! 🌞 Apr 4  Decreased gaba to 400 mg (100 mg 4x/day)-Apr 4, 2019   0.25 klon

March 11  Klonopin .5 mg twice daily, varied dose til Apr 15. Started Klon fast taper 25%, short use

Mar 16, 450 mg gaba 3x/day cut 600 mg--not exact!--updose after learning w/d

Feb 20, 1800 mg gabapentin; MD taper; off 3 days=mvt disorder & autonomic instability. July 2018 temazepam 15 mg 1-2; prn several x/wk til Jan/Feb 2019 when cold turkey, flu illness for months

July 2018 started gabapentin 100 3x/day; titrated up to 1800 mg (600 3x/day)

Buspar, I forget how much, 2 pills a day Jan 2017-July 2018 cold turkey

*I speak from my experience. Nothing I say is medical advice. I'm not a doctor.

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arbor

Hi GregoryReboot--   Are you also Shrike?  I want to thank you for your generous response.  So helpful and wise.  I'm familar with mind mapping, but I hadn't thought to employ the technique.  Now at your suggestion, I'm finding it interesting for tracking the associative paths my brain (under w/d duress) automatically takes.  It's a good technique for mindfulness--which helps me step back from the upwelling of despair during the day.  If "the horror" comes up during the night or when trying to sleep,  I have to get up.  Your suggestion of patience is so kind because I know you know how hard won it is when I can go there--which is getting better.  I could go on and on about how much I appreciate your answers to my questions--and that you would take the time to write them.  It means a lot to me.  I've printed them out and they're on my fridge.  I agree about the exercise.  (A problem with the smoke of the fires right now.)  And I'll have to try the time-lining.  

My very best to you on this journey....

 

Here's your comments centering my fridge.

 

fridge-001.JPG


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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Shrike

Thanks @arbor  Yes. I just changed my screen name to ‘shrike’. He’s a character in Mortal Engines (movie - you seeing a theme here?). I’m a very visual, creative person so I find that those movie images are very powerful and helpful. 


Your picture of comments on your fridge is so moving. How good it feels to feel valued. You made my day. It reminds me that there are silver linings all over these depths we’ve gone through. To feel so ‘subhuman’ for so long, it’s great to see all these ‘fully-human’ people ‘returning’ to pick up the pieces and help each out and grow, etc. 

 

Thanks again. I hope you’re having a good day. Keep me posted!


My records (and memory) are not good for the early years. I did the best I could to provide a summary below. Lexapro just stopped "working" on me a couple of different times so my Dr. just kept trying things. Eventually, the side effects were so horrendous and the drugs were not really working, so I concluded the 'cure' was worse than the 'disease'.

 

12 years total of SSRIs and SRNI use then 7 month break, then Mirtazapine for sleep

  • Lexapro - 2005 - 2009
  • Effexor - 2009 - 2012 (tried to get off, tapered down, quit for a few weeks)
  • Pristiq - 2012 - 2014
  • Lexapro - 2013 - 2016
  • Buspirone - 2013 - 2018 (30-60 mg)
  • Klonopin - 2013 - 2018 (1-3 mg)
  • Abilify - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Remeron - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Cymbalta - 2016 (seemed to start working but GI side effects were horrible)
  • Celexa - 2017 (few months - didn't "work")
  • Pristiq - 2017 (few months, made me switch to generic - didn't "work")
  • Fetzima - 2017 (few months - kinda worked but anxiety literally drove me crazy - obsessive thoughts)
  • Trintellenix - 2017  (felt like a psychotic break, fast taper [too fast] ended November 15, 2017)
  • No ADs - 7 months free of antidepressants (very glad I did it, but no sleep was agony - so desperate I surrendered to Mirtazapine prescription)
  • Slow methodical taper off of Clonazepam (~2017 - 2018)
  • Mirtazapine - June 2018 to present (started with 7.5 moved up about a month at a time to 45mg - stayed there til 2020) 
  • Currently tapering off of Mirtazapine at about 12mg now (learned that my super fast taper was too fast after finding SA so going slow on this last one)
  • Still in protracted withdrawal from all the other stuff but getting better (still 'injured' and impatient but so grateful to be getting my 'self' back...slowly...)

 

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Shrike

This is deep stuff @ShiningLight. You’ve given me a lot to chew on here. I’ve always been a bit outside the box and I think you’re right that the ‘system’ really is a sick little prison. Right now, the thought of going out on my own sounds a little terrifying as so many people are depending on me but maybe this is just a good thing to keep in the back of my mind as I consider what’s next for me. Big corporate is absolutely depressing to me but it’s also semi-stable, etc. As my mind comes back and begin to think and see things more clearly, maybe there are more alternatives than I think...

 

Thanks again. Hey do you mind if I ask what type of business you are in? I’d also like to hear more about how you found your niche and took the plunge to go indi. 
 


My records (and memory) are not good for the early years. I did the best I could to provide a summary below. Lexapro just stopped "working" on me a couple of different times so my Dr. just kept trying things. Eventually, the side effects were so horrendous and the drugs were not really working, so I concluded the 'cure' was worse than the 'disease'.

 

12 years total of SSRIs and SRNI use then 7 month break, then Mirtazapine for sleep

  • Lexapro - 2005 - 2009
  • Effexor - 2009 - 2012 (tried to get off, tapered down, quit for a few weeks)
  • Pristiq - 2012 - 2014
  • Lexapro - 2013 - 2016
  • Buspirone - 2013 - 2018 (30-60 mg)
  • Klonopin - 2013 - 2018 (1-3 mg)
  • Abilify - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Remeron - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Cymbalta - 2016 (seemed to start working but GI side effects were horrible)
  • Celexa - 2017 (few months - didn't "work")
  • Pristiq - 2017 (few months, made me switch to generic - didn't "work")
  • Fetzima - 2017 (few months - kinda worked but anxiety literally drove me crazy - obsessive thoughts)
  • Trintellenix - 2017  (felt like a psychotic break, fast taper [too fast] ended November 15, 2017)
  • No ADs - 7 months free of antidepressants (very glad I did it, but no sleep was agony - so desperate I surrendered to Mirtazapine prescription)
  • Slow methodical taper off of Clonazepam (~2017 - 2018)
  • Mirtazapine - June 2018 to present (started with 7.5 moved up about a month at a time to 45mg - stayed there til 2020) 
  • Currently tapering off of Mirtazapine at about 12mg now (learned that my super fast taper was too fast after finding SA so going slow on this last one)
  • Still in protracted withdrawal from all the other stuff but getting better (still 'injured' and impatient but so grateful to be getting my 'self' back...slowly...)

 

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ShiningLight
On 9/14/2020 at 1:57 PM, Shrike said:

Right now, the thought of going out on my own sounds a little terrifying as so many people are depending on me but maybe this is just a good thing to keep in the back of my mind as I consider what’s next for me. Big corporate is absolutely depressing to me but it’s also semi-stable, etc.

 

Thanks again. Hey do you mind if I ask what type of business you are in? I’d also like to hear more about how you found your niche and took the plunge to go indi. 
 

 

It's a lot terrifying! I haven't actually taken the plunge yet!!! I'm close though. I've been flirting with it for a number of years. 


Now: Gabapentin 31 mg 4x/day =124 mg, 150 mg Zoloft am since 2004, 50 mg Trazodone bedtime.  Daily drug burden decreased from 2050 mg to 324 mg 🐢🐢

2020, Gabapentin each dose 4x/day: Aug 20 31 mg, Aug 18, 33 mg, July 29, 35 mg, July 23 38 mg, July 22 40 mg Jun 24 42 mg, Jun 15 44 mg, Jun 9 48 mg, May 22 50 mg, May 14 54 mg, May 7 56 mg, Apr 16 58 mg, Mar 28 60 mg, Mar 18 62 mg. Feb 26 64 mg. Feb 19, 66 mg. Jan 23, 70 mg.

2019 Dec 19, 72 mg. Nov 14 ,76 mg. Aug 8, 80 mg. Aug 6, 85 mg. Jul 26, 90 mg. Jul 11, 95 mg.

Jul 16 trazodone from 100 to 50 mg.

Jun 17-July 10 Slowly changed gab fr pill to liquid at same dose 100 mg 4x/d.

Apr 24 Stopped klon!!! 🌞 Apr 4  Decreased gaba to 400 mg (100 mg 4x/day)-Apr 4, 2019   0.25 klon

March 11  Klonopin .5 mg twice daily, varied dose til Apr 15. Started Klon fast taper 25%, short use

Mar 16, 450 mg gaba 3x/day cut 600 mg--not exact!--updose after learning w/d

Feb 20, 1800 mg gabapentin; MD taper; off 3 days=mvt disorder & autonomic instability. July 2018 temazepam 15 mg 1-2; prn several x/wk til Jan/Feb 2019 when cold turkey, flu illness for months

July 2018 started gabapentin 100 3x/day; titrated up to 1800 mg (600 3x/day)

Buspar, I forget how much, 2 pills a day Jan 2017-July 2018 cold turkey

*I speak from my experience. Nothing I say is medical advice. I'm not a doctor.

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Shrike
16 hours ago, ShiningLight said:

It's a lot terrifying! I haven't actually taken the plunge yet!!! I'm close though. I've been flirting with it for a number of years. 

 

Haha. Well it's good to know someone else is thinking about it too. If I could only get financed for a year to get stuff up and running I bet I could do it. But the thought of trying to do in addition to a full time job I don't think is possible right now for me. Who knows, maybe when kids start to leave the house there could be a window for that... Good luck @ShiningLight! Let me know if you go for it!


My records (and memory) are not good for the early years. I did the best I could to provide a summary below. Lexapro just stopped "working" on me a couple of different times so my Dr. just kept trying things. Eventually, the side effects were so horrendous and the drugs were not really working, so I concluded the 'cure' was worse than the 'disease'.

 

12 years total of SSRIs and SRNI use then 7 month break, then Mirtazapine for sleep

  • Lexapro - 2005 - 2009
  • Effexor - 2009 - 2012 (tried to get off, tapered down, quit for a few weeks)
  • Pristiq - 2012 - 2014
  • Lexapro - 2013 - 2016
  • Buspirone - 2013 - 2018 (30-60 mg)
  • Klonopin - 2013 - 2018 (1-3 mg)
  • Abilify - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Remeron - 2016 (added because Lexapro wasn't working anymore - few months, didn't work)
  • Cymbalta - 2016 (seemed to start working but GI side effects were horrible)
  • Celexa - 2017 (few months - didn't "work")
  • Pristiq - 2017 (few months, made me switch to generic - didn't "work")
  • Fetzima - 2017 (few months - kinda worked but anxiety literally drove me crazy - obsessive thoughts)
  • Trintellenix - 2017  (felt like a psychotic break, fast taper [too fast] ended November 15, 2017)
  • No ADs - 7 months free of antidepressants (very glad I did it, but no sleep was agony - so desperate I surrendered to Mirtazapine prescription)
  • Slow methodical taper off of Clonazepam (~2017 - 2018)
  • Mirtazapine - June 2018 to present (started with 7.5 moved up about a month at a time to 45mg - stayed there til 2020) 
  • Currently tapering off of Mirtazapine at about 12mg now (learned that my super fast taper was too fast after finding SA so going slow on this last one)
  • Still in protracted withdrawal from all the other stuff but getting better (still 'injured' and impatient but so grateful to be getting my 'self' back...slowly...)

 

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