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tryingtosurvive330: Extreme hunger but no appetite - coupled with high cortisol levels upon waking, dark thoughts and hopelessness, upset stomach


tryingtosurvive330

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  • Mentor
On 1/13/2021 at 9:17 AM, tryingtosurvive330 said:

Feeling no hope for the future in general. Personally and just everything about the world. Working on it with my therapist but everything that I know I should do to reframe my thinking just feels like it’s nothing and in the moment I have low motivation to believe in stuff or even to want to. I just feel really lost. 

Hi Trying

I went through a period of absolute apathy and feeling "empty" during therapy.  My therapist was very patient and finally got me to start using CBT and other coping strategies.  Give yourself some time and don't judge yourself too harshly.  Since recovery, I've heard this period called "the dark night of the soul", when your anxious thoughts and negative feelings ease up, but before you feel anything positive or like you're recovering.  Trust me, it won't last forever--its actually a sign you're in the early stages of recovery.  

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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Trying, during my WD and recovery, I too feared I couldn't take it forever.  Looking back, I realized that not every minute of every day was miserable. I was able to enjoy our son's junior high concer

I feel for you @tryingtosurvive330  Being tired and yet not sleeping is horrible and it makes the days very long and hard. I know I used to analyse every detail of what I ate and supplement taken to h

The old saying we're our own worst critics has never been truer than it is in WD and recovery.  So often, it seemed everyone around me was recovering faster than me, and I thought I was doing somethin

tryingtosurvive330

@mstimc thank you for the encouragement and the info. If you can see that this means I'm in early stages of recovery, I will try to believe it. It's really hard.

 

I deleted my social media and news apps but the last couple days have sought out info on covid and vaccines and that's partly why I felt really resigned to what the world is going through. I felt like I remained logical and somewhat optimistic and not too worried over the last year but now I'm scared of everything and feel like I can't make it til we get everything under control. I know (hope) I will but it's so slow and I have zero patience and this results in frustration, anger and sadness. The mornings are those times of "emptiness".

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

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  • Mentor

Yes, many people (including me) have experienced morning cortisol spikes; mornings are often the most anxious time of day for many people in recovery.   You can't blame yourself for feeling stressed during this crisis.  We're temporarily living in Portugal but our son is in grad school in Michigan.  We're Californians too, so we're dealing with the virus outbreak in three different places, and having our son being 5,000 miles away makes it even more stressful.  

 

My wife and I have been doing some online mindfulness and meditation classes that help us keep some perspective.  They've helped--we allow ourselves to reserve some time to stop worrying and let the negative thoughts go, at least for a while.  Its really helped get us through this insanity. 

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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tryingtosurvive330

@mstimc During the "dark night of the soul" were you unable to smile? I feel like I can't smile, I sit blankly for a long time, stare off into space not caring, have the tv on but don't pay attention. I say that I don't care but really I hate this feeling and feel depressed about it. I want to be able to feel some happiness. I don't know if that's the same as apathy. But I do feel empty.

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

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  • Mentor

Oh yes.  It was almost impossible for me to enjoy anything.  "Emptiness" is a great way to describe it.  But right in the middle of it, I got my first real window.   Our son was in junior high jazz band at I was at a concert.  I was able to focus on the pure joy on his face playing guitar, and for maybe 10 or 15 minutes I was overcome with his joy.  It didn't last long, but it gave me something I could hold on to during the darker phases.  Try to find something that gives you just a few minutes of joy and build on that.

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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I’ve also abandoned news and social media.  Everything is negative and skewed.

 

A good question would be if you were this way before meds?  If not, it’s withdrawal.

 

I always ask myself if it’s just me and then I say i had anxiety but I didn’t have anxiety this bad.  

Med History

 

March 2014 - June 2014: Zoloft 100mg?

August 2014: Effexor for 3 days

August 2014 - October 2017: Lexapro 20mg, three month taper (jumped at 5mg)

January 2018 - August 2020: Reinstate Lexapro 20 mg, six month taper (jumped at 1mg)

August 2014 - December 2019: Klonopin from 1mg to 1.5mg, year long taper (jumped at .125mg)

 

Supplement: Magnesium 

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tryingtosurvive330

@Jennings I thought about that, and the first time I got really depressed I don't think I ever had feelings of wanting to die. But it was a long time ago and my memory is blurry now. The anxiety was awful and I was scared of everything but then I went on stupid zoloft. 

 

The second time I don't think I had the dying feelings either. And that was within 6 months of coming off zoloft and bad taper, and huge change in job and relationships.

 

So I'm confused on this one. I did notice I still have very slight brain zaps, only when I look to the left.

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

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  • Administrator
17 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

11:20pm Went to bed

11:45pm Awake

12am Fell asleep

4:51am Woke up - Michael Sealey youtube

5am Woke up, Michael Sealey

6am Woke up, Michael Sealey

7am Woke up but had already been in state of consciousness. Small anxiety in chest

 

I'm a big fan of Michael Sealey's sleep videos, too. 

 

You actually got a really good chunk of sleep from midnight until almost 5 am. I now it's not restorative sleep, but it's really good for someone going through withdrawal. You may find some helpful tips here:

 

Tips to help sleep: so many of us have that awful withdrawal insomnia

 

You may also want to go to bed earlier. Alto posted this in the Melatonin thread:

 

On 4/6/2011 at 9:26 PM, Altostrata said:

Your adrenals also run on a sleep schedule of approximately 10 p.m. to dawn. They tend to reactivate if you stay up later, which may keep you from sleeping. If you can, get to bed by 10 p.m. and retrain your sleep cycle.

 

16 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

Shep, based on my initial story, do you believe I am in WD?

 

I do. Here is a list of withdrawal symptoms:

 

Dr. Joseph Glenmullen's withdrawal symptom checklist

 

 

 

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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14 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

@Jennings I thought about that, and the first time I got really depressed I don't think I ever had feelings of wanting to die. But it was a long time ago and my memory is blurry now. The anxiety was awful and I was scared of everything but then I went on stupid zoloft. 

 

The second time I don't think I had the dying feelings either. And that was within 6 months of coming off zoloft and bad taper, and huge change in job and relationships.

 

So I'm confused on this one. I did notice I still have very slight brain zaps, only when I look to the left.

 

tryingtosurvive - I can relate to your feelings, I think your 'wanting-to-die'-feelings might be a result of your exhaustion and many 'I just can't bear it any longer' -moments. I also often have those moments when I just want things to STOP. But deep down, I'm sure, you'd much prefer to be able to feel joy and happiness, surrounded by your brother and his children, than to be dead. I think those 'I wanna be dead'-thoughts are shortcut-pesudo-solutions of our minds. They are so understandable, but don't pay too much attention to them, just let them float around and focus on things that will get you through the moment. ♥️

Fluoxetine (Prozac) (25mg?) from December 2002 - November 2005 for anxiety/depression

Effexor (Venlafaxine) Retard (75mg) due to Panic attacks from November 2005 until around May 2020 when I started tapering off from 75mg to about 33mg in September. Accidentially missed a dose and naively went cold turkey from around 33mg to zero on 26th of September. I am in week 13 without the drug now. I've tried CBD oil and htp5 for a while, currently taking Omega 3 (1400mg), magnesium (800mg) and ashwagandha for the cortisol spike.

25th December: Reinstated Venlafaxine with one bead (0.3/0.4mg) in the evening, proceeding with two beads (0.7/0.8mg) per day around noon. Started taking the magensium on the same day, so not sure if this might have a masking effect.

01th January: Updosed to 3beads (around 1mg) of Venlafaxine, so far no adverse reaction

2nd January: Back to 2beads of Venlafaxine, also 1/4 Diazepam, 12mg Lyrica.

3rd & 4th  January: 3 beads of Venlafaxine, 12mg Lyrica

since 5th January: 3 beads of Venlafaxine daily and nothing else except fish oil and magnesium. No changes in daily routine

15th January - 17th January: 4 beads of Venlafaxine

since 18th Januray: back to 3 beads of Venlafaxine

since 19th January: 3 beads of Venlafaxine, introduced Ashwaghanda supplement. Also still using fish oil and magnesium.

Since 23. January: introduced Lyrica to help with sleep/jerks keeping me awake: updosed from 4mg to meanwhile 8mg.

 

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tryingtosurvive330

Thanks Shep. Will aim to lay in bed 10pm or before. There were days I dreaded bed because it meant the morning was near. Now it's kind of the opposite because it means the day is over.

 

Continued from Jan 14 right after I took my .15mg escitalopram:

 

9am-2pm Felt blank and empty all day. Sat in sun for an hour-ish. Read news. Didn't scare me but just continued my thought process on...it's going to be a long time before normal.

1-2:40pm working

2:40pm small lunch, first food of the day

3-5pm working. Had IT issues, frustrated, was irritable towards very nice IT guy. I felt bad. probably neuro emotion which was really frustrating.

7pm Facetimed family. Nice to see them but made me sad.

8pm Facetimed friend. Just felt really blank again. Didn't feel like saying words because I didn't feel like a person.

8:30pm Dinner. Possibly one of the largest meals in a week or so, still not a lot but felt incredibly overfull.

8:45pm sitting blankly on the couch. Texting/reading news/tv in background. Very tired.

10:30pm laid in bed with ipad/netflix on for some noise.

11-11:30pm awake, likely fell asleep right before/around midnight

4:45am woke up. Calm sleep story

5:25am woke up. Calm sleep story

6:30am woke up. Calm sleep story

6:50am woke up. Michael Sealey. 

7:45am woke up. In last hour, kept jolting awake until this time. Same feelings as last 2-3 days. Low anxiety, low mood. Slight upset stomach again, went to restroom, small bowel movement.

8-8:10am SAD lamp

8:10-8:20 Calm meditation

 

 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

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  • Administrator
17 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

Thanks Shep. Will aim to lay in bed 10pm or before.

 

This sounds like a good idea. Hopefully you'll see some improvements in sleep over time.

 

I know having something playing in the background can be helpful for calming purposes, but you may want to switch to a radio or turn to reading instead of using an iPad. Turning off electronics a couple of hours before bedtime can improve sleep. On the other hand, it looks like using an iPad for sleep meditations throughout the night is helping you get through this. Might be good to experiment and try a radio or read for a night and see if that helps improve your sleep. Please see: 

 

TV or computer use in evening can disrupt sleep

 

Also, are you using light-blocking glasses? Please see:

 

Light-sensitive? Try blocking out blue light

 

I get home from work around 7:30 or 8 PM each night and the first thing I do is put on my UVEX blue light blocking glasses. My eyes immediately relax and I start to get sleepy. Might be worth a try, especially if you're finding Netflix and meditations on the computer to be helpful in the evening. At least the glasses will help mitigate the effects of the screen. 

 

Also, wearing a sleep mask at night to block out any early morning light can help extend your sleep. You're still getting a good solid chunk of sleep from midnight to almost 5 AM, so it looks like the reinstatement isn't making your sleep worse. 

 

How do you feel overall about the reinstatement? 

 

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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tryingtosurvive330
16 hours ago, Shep said:

 

I know having something playing in the background can be helpful for calming purposes, but you may want to switch to a radio or turn to reading instead of using an iPad. Turning off electronics a couple of hours before bedtime can improve sleep. On the other hand, it looks like using an iPad for sleep meditations throughout the night is helping you get through this. Might be good to experiment and try a radio or read for a night and see if that helps improve your sleep. Please see: 

I knew that what I am doing is not the healthiest, but for some reason right now it provides more comfort and I feel a little nervous about doing something else (reading or radio). I do have blue blockers, but left them at the office which I’ve not been to in weeks. I may order another pair. I do have the “night shift” turned on the iPad which is supposed to help with warmer colors, but not sure if that actually works versus the glasses which you can physically tell block out the blue light. last night though, I did turn off the iPad completely before 11 and was able to fall asleep on my own, but I had taken Zyrtec at about 8pm. The winds were very bad here and I was sneezing all day. So I’m not sure if it was due to that. Also, I have been using the eye mask but only put it on the first time I wake up, because it’s usually still dark. 
 

Today was day 5 of reinstatement, and now I feel I do not want to try to increase the dose. I am a little more confident in my measuring and have tried to erase from my head that a small dose could not work. Everything should be lowest therapeutic dose, right? And clearly I was overprescribed initially, plus it was clearly not a good drug for me (I would sleep through full weekends ignoring the fact that that was completely abnormal). Yesterday and today I felt very slightly more normal. Not to say I feel good at all. 
 

continued from Jan 15th:

9am 0.15 escitalopram. Low mood. 
11am sat in sun for 30 mins and texted a couple friends. Felt a tiny bit lighter

12:20pm very small lunch (less than a fistful of food) but the second day in a row I could eat at normal lunchtime.

1-4pm work. Then read a lot of news which I was trying to stay away from. But it did not cause me anxiety. 
6pm dinner, normal portion and I was able to eat easily. 
9:20pm Zyrtec for allergies

10pm small craving/hunger so ate slice of cheese

10:15pm laid in bed with iPad on low sound and dimmed. Turned it off before 11

11pm-12am fell asleep somewhere in here

6:30am woke up, some dreaming. tried to go back to sleep because felt groggy (probably from Zyrtec) and put on eye mask

7:45am woke up again

8am sad lamp for ten mins

8:10am Calm meditation

9-11am FaceTimed friend

11:20-12pm sat in sun. Felt awake. But no work today so felt less pressure

12:50pm normal sized lunch

all day sat on couch and texted friends, read news, watched tv. 
7pm dinner, ate well. 
 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

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tryingtosurvive330

I did do the 0.15mg escitalopram today, just forgot to put it in my notes. I did it at 8:50am, just a few minutes earlier than normal. 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

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tryingtosurvive330
On 1/15/2021 at 5:25 AM, Manati said:

I think those 'I wanna be dead'-thoughts are shortcut-pesudo-solutions of our minds. They are so understandable, but don't pay too much attention to them, just let them float around and focus on things that will get you through the moment. ♥️

I like the thought that these are shortcut pseudo emotions. I will try to think of them as not being real. 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

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  • Administrator
6 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

Everything should be lowest therapeutic dose, right?

 

I think we're saying the same thing, but I would use the term the "effective" dose instead of "therapeutic" dose. You're trying to get just enough of the drug into your system that you're able to tone down some of the symptoms caused by dependency to that drug. 

 

This post may be helpful in its descriptions: 

 

How psychiatric drugs remodel your brain

 

It really is a remodel of the entire autonomic nervous system, not just the brain, but the analogies are really good in that post. 

 

 

6 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

I did turn off the iPad completely before 11 and was able to fall asleep on my own, but I had taken Zyrtec at about 8pm.

 

6 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

11pm-12am fell asleep somewhere in here

6:30am woke up, some dreaming. tried to go back to sleep because felt groggy (probably from Zyrtec) and put on eye mask

7:45am woke up again

 

You're right that it could have been the Zyrtec, but you did get 6.5 hours of sleep, which is an improvement. So maybe turning off the iPad before 11 was helpful. Might be worth experimenting and trying that again for a few more nights. 

 

Are you able to resolve any of your allergy problems using a netty pot or other natural remedies? Adding in off-and-on allergy drugs can cause problems in the long term. Just a thought, might be worth googling for some natural allergy remedies. 

 

6 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

12:20pm very small lunch (less than a fistful of food) but the second day in a row I could eat at normal lunchtime.
6pm dinner, normal portion and I was able to eat easily. 

10pm small craving/hunger so ate slice of cheese

 

12:50pm normal sized lunch
7pm dinner, ate well. 

 

I just pulled a few line from your last journal. This is a definite improvement. 

 

It looks like the overall symptoms are improving with the reinstatement. Please continue your notes. Hope you continue to see improvements in sleep and in eating over the coming days. 

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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tryingtosurvive330

Thank you Shep, I have tried the neti pot for my allergies, and nothing has seemed to work except Zyrtec. I’ve had them bad since I was little. Even the other otc meds don’t work. I haven’t tried any herbal remedies though. I’m trying hard not to take anything when it’s allergies I can handle. 
 

last night was really disappointing, I’m very frustrated and tired and woke up with some slight anxiety. 
 

10:30pm laid down

11:15pm iPad off. Calm sleep story on

1:40am tossed and turned up to this point, turned back on Calm sleep story

4am woke up. Calm sleep story. Put on eye mask

5:25am woke up. Calm sleep story.

6:30am woke up. Calm sleep story. 
7am tossing up to this point and now just awake. 
 

No allergy meds or anything yesterday so the good sleep the night before must have been more the Zyrtec, not me. 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

Link to post
tryingtosurvive330

I also had some uncomfortable dreams all through the night. 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

Link to post

Hey Trying,

 

I also have weird uncomfortable dreams.  Even when I’m starting to drift, odd images flood my psyche.

 

I wake up confused a lot or just in straight up panic.

 

You seem better than you were so just hold onto that.  Tonight will be better.

Med History

 

March 2014 - June 2014: Zoloft 100mg?

August 2014: Effexor for 3 days

August 2014 - October 2017: Lexapro 20mg, three month taper (jumped at 5mg)

January 2018 - August 2020: Reinstate Lexapro 20 mg, six month taper (jumped at 1mg)

August 2014 - December 2019: Klonopin from 1mg to 1.5mg, year long taper (jumped at .125mg)

 

Supplement: Magnesium 

Link to post
tryingtosurvive330

@Jenningsthanks. Today I just felt very down. I have been saying my anxiety hasn’t been too bad, which I feel is true, but I’ve felt the need to sigh every few seconds all day long. I think that’s also anxiety, just not the crippling kind. I hope you are doing a little better. 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

Link to post
tryingtosurvive330

Continued from this morning

8am woke up again after writing here this morning and trying to close my eyes again. jolted awake thinking about my performance review at work. 
9am stomach was churning a bit. 2nd bowel movement. I was feeling uneasy

9:30-11am went to local garden with mom. Had to rest after ten mins of very slow walking. Sat on bench the rest of the time

12pm zero appetite but forced myself to eat small bowl of food

12:30pm just felt really down

1-2:15pm sat outside in backyard and cried a bit, did Calm meditation 

6pm FaceTimed brothers family

7pm again zero appetite and struggled to eat, but I did. 
 

ive just had a pit in my stomach all day. I feel alone. The one friend I had seen a couple times during the virus, is now quarantined because her boyfriend has it. I’m so worried and sad. Also been ruminating on the news. I deleted all the apps but now have been seeking it out online. I can’t stop. 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

Link to post
  • Administrator
9 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

I deleted all the apps but now have been seeking it out online. I can’t stop. 

 

This may help. Anytime you have either a withdrawal symptom or feel the need to seek out things online that you know are going to be triggering, do this:

 

"Change the channel" - dealing with cognitive symptoms

 

Perhaps make a list of healthy distractions and write them down or bookmark them on your computer. That way you can automatically turn to them. 

 

If being on the computer is a problem, make sure your "change the channel" activities are things away from the computer. Perhaps turn on some favorite music and work a jigsaw puzzle, read a magazine or book, or take a walk or go into a different room. Anything to shift you into a better mind frame. 

 

22 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

No allergy meds or anything yesterday so the good sleep the night before must have been more the Zyrtec, not me. 

 

This is hard to say. Some people experience a lot of good night / bad night patterns. That's not uncommon. Also, you're dealing with an upcoming job performance review, which can make anyone stressed out. 

 

A request - please post your drug and symptoms journal in a 24-hour format in one post. Having it posted piecemeal makes it harder to read and I'm afraid important information may be missed. 

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.

 

Link to post
tryingtosurvive330

Ok, thanks Shep. I’m repeating part of yesterday so I can make it 24 hours for today.

 

8am woke up again after writing here this morning and trying to close my eyes again. jolted awake thinking about my performance review at work. 
9am stomach was churning a bit. 2nd bowel movement. I was feeling uneasy

9:30-11am went to local garden with mom. Had to rest after ten mins of very slow walking. Sat on bench the rest of the time

12pm zero appetite but forced myself to eat small bowl of food

12:30pm just felt really down

1-2:15pm sat outside in backyard and cried a bit, did Calm meditation 

6pm FaceTimed brothers family

7pm again zero appetite and struggled to eat, but I did. 

8-10pm was watching tv, looking at news, and had a Disney+ group watch going on my phone. I wasn’t watching but I did it to feel like others were there. 
10pm  laid down. Didn’t turn off iPad but closed my eyes and tried to fall asleep

10:45pm had fallen asleep lightly. Woke up and turned off iPad, fell asleep a little after 11pm. 
1:40am woke up. Tried to call back asleep

3:30am woke up. Calm sleep meditation

5:30am woke up, Calm sleep story

6:30am woke up, Calm sleep story

6:50am, woke up, Calm sleep story

7:22am woke up, checked phone. Now awake. Had disturbing dream

 

 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

Link to post
tryingtosurvive330

I know SA only recommends magnesium or fish oil. But I bought chamomile and lavender tea. I read a bit on here that left me a little confused. I know I read about one of them interacting with gaba receptors....have others found this kind of tea to be activating or not agree with them? I just want to have normal sleep. But not sure if this would just make me tired then the cortisol spike would come in and I’d be stuck awake and even more tired. 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

Link to post
tryingtosurvive330

I had also read Altostrata mentioning baby aspirin for the cortisol spike, and I saw the same on google. But would that only mask the issue....is it only a short term fix?

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

Link to post
tryingtosurvive330

Jan18-Jan19

8am sad lamp and Calm meditation 

8:50am .15mg escitalopram

9-9:40am sat in shower

10:20am-11 sat outside

11:30-12pm walked in garden then went to pharmacy

12:30-1pm very small lunch which I had to force

1-2pm work

3-3:30pm sat outside again read news

5pm read a sad article about special needs kids not getting help they need because of virus and cried a bit

7pm very small dinner. Had to force as well

10pm sat in bed. Short Calm sleep meditation 

10:30pm FaceTimed friend because she had vaccine info i had been anxious about. Then was on iPad researching stuff

11:30pm-12:45am tossing and turning, calm sleep meditation 

1:45am awake, Calm sleep meditation 

4am woke up, Calm sleep story

5am woke up. Wide awake. Restroom, back online, stomach upset, anxious. Turned on Netflix on iPad low volume. Drifted 5:30 but not fully asleep

6:30am awake. Texting friend. Another trip to restroom

7:15 still sitting in bed. Awake

 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

Link to post
  • Administrator
On 1/18/2021 at 10:25 PM, tryingtosurvive330 said:

I know SA only recommends magnesium or fish oil. But I bought chamomile and lavender tea. I read a bit on here that left me a little confused. I know I read about one of them interacting with gaba receptors....have others found this kind of tea to be activating or not agree with them? I just want to have normal sleep. But not sure if this would just make me tired then the cortisol spike would come in and I’d be stuck awake and even more tired. 

 

On 1/18/2021 at 10:27 PM, tryingtosurvive330 said:

I had also read Altostrata mentioning baby aspirin for the cortisol spike, and I saw the same on google. But would that only mask the issue....is it only a short term fix?

 

Regarding adding in these types of things, please do so one at a time and at a small amount. 

 

The rule of 3KIS: Keep it simple. Keep it slow. Keep it stable.

 

Tea is generally a safer option than getting herbs in capsule or pill form. But again, try one at a time and only a small amount. Your benzo use wasn't long term or every day, so you may be okay using chamomile or other teas that hit GABA receptors. 

 

Be careful using baby aspirin if you have any medical conditions that might be problematic. 

 

Also, I would be careful adding in something to help after one or two bad nights. Look for overall patterns. Your drug and symptoms journal is an excellent way of doing this. If you're getting three or four decent night sleeps a week, you may not want to fiddle around with too many "fixes" and instead, continue working with the non-drug coping strategies. That can work best in the long run. It's really individual and you'll be the best guide on what to do. 

 

Simplicity, in the long run, will make this easier. 

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.

 

Link to post
tryingtosurvive330

I know that you’ve said the 5 hours of sleep is a good stretch... what about when it’s 4? I’m so exhausted and can still barely function on the 5. I’ll try to continue without any help on sleep. I feel like I never got to “ catch up” on sleep which I felt I needed in the past when experiencing lack of sleep. I’m exhausted. 
 

jan19-Jan20

7:50-8:10am sad lamp, calm meditation 

9:06am anxiety about new virus variant. FaceTimed brother with bad anxiety and feeling very depressed 

1-2pm work

2pm ate one hard boiled egg. No other food in stomach

2:45-4:15pm therapy appt

4:30-5:30pm searched for vaccine appts for parents which was stressful. But felt slight relief after

6:30pm ate small/normal size dinner

7pm so tired from lack of sleep but tried to stay up a little more and not nap

9:40pm laid down, Calm sleep meditation 

10pm drifted to sleep

11pm woke up. Fell back asleep

4:20am woke up. calm sleep meditation which did not help at all

5am awake

5:30am awake. Turned on iPad Netflix low volume. Drifted in and out. Put on eye mask

6:30am awake. Laid there with eyes closed but awake. 
7am awake now writing this

 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

Link to post

I feel for you @tryingtosurvive330  Being tired and yet not sleeping is horrible and it makes the days very long and hard. I know I used to analyse every detail of what I ate and supplement taken to hopefully make tonight better than last night. No silver bullet came. Eventually I realised that I was better going for stability- I only take Magnesium Glycinate and have Sparking water before bed and stick to a regular bedtime, accepting sleep is a temporary issue, that there would be good and bad nights and that it was part of healing. I started looking at week to week instead of day to day and it helped make me less tense. I dream how to spend my imaginary lottery win, imagine holidays, do A to Z mental quizzes, meditate...anything to take my mind off not sleeping. I started tracking trends in sleep. Initially getting 4-5 hours was a victory, then 1 full nights sleep a week was a victory, then 2, then 3. There are setbacks and after 2 years of this, I still get 3 or 4 bad nights a month but the tracker has helped me see my progress and not get too distraught in the bad days. Be kind to yourself. You’re healing. 

50 mg Sertraline Nov 2016 to Dec 2016

100 mg Sertraline Jan - March 2017

50 mg Sertraline April - June 2017

25 mg Sertraline July 2017 - Sept 2018

12.5 mg Sertraline Oct 2018

0 mg Nov 1 2018

Link to post
tryingtosurvive330

@DaBro thank you for the encouragement and telling me how you viewed yours process. I suppose that I can think of 4-5 hours as success right now. I have to try to not dwell on the fact that everything I’ve read says that 5 can be detrimental to your health. I will try to evaluate week by week instead of day by day. On those days where I have a setback, it’s so hard to focus on the broader week. But I will try. 
 

it’s great that you only have 3-4 bad nights a month. Do you feel that you have okay sleep in general now other than those nights?

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

Link to post
9 minutes ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

 

it’s great that you only have 3-4 bad nights a month. Do you feel that you have okay sleep in general now other than those nights?

 

I turned a corner about 6 weeks ago when I got 7 nights full sleep for the first time in over a year. In fact I’ve been sleeping 9-10 hours recently which creates different (but nicer) problems. That said last night I woke at 2:30 for an hour, got a big head zap and fell asleep again around 4. I really think acceptance over worry/fighting it is the answer. I do feel for you as I vividly remember going to work shattered. I called those my uphill days, but I got through them as will you. 

50 mg Sertraline Nov 2016 to Dec 2016

100 mg Sertraline Jan - March 2017

50 mg Sertraline April - June 2017

25 mg Sertraline July 2017 - Sept 2018

12.5 mg Sertraline Oct 2018

0 mg Nov 1 2018

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  • Administrator
22 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

7:50-8:10am sad lamp, calm meditation 

 

Using a SAD lamp is good, but are you able to take a walk outside in the sun every day? A walk in nature, if possible, can be very restorative for folks who deal with sadness due to winter time. 

 

20 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

I have to try to not dwell on the fact that everything I’ve read says that 5 can be detrimental to your health.

 

If this were true, we wouldn't have a lot of success stories on this forum. Insomnia is one of the most common symptoms with people surviving for a year or more with very little sleep and still recovering and writing a success story. @DaBrois also proving this to be true!

 

If in doubt, please see:

 

Success stories: Recovery from withdrawal

 

Sleep is important, but human beings are very resilient and our brains are very neuroplastic. 

 

Neuroplasticity (video 2 minutes)

 

Healing from antidepressants: The power of neuroplasticity video (7.5 minutes)

 

20 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

I will try to evaluate week by week instead of day by day. On those days where I have a setback, it’s so hard to focus on the broader week. But I will try. 

 

This is a great way to view it. It's the "overall" improvements that show up over time that are so important. 

 

You may also want to read these threads:

 

How psychiatric drugs remodel your brain

 

What is happening in your brain?

 

 

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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tryingtosurvive330

Thanks Shep. 

2 hours ago, Shep said:

Using a SAD lamp is good, but are you able to take a walk outside in the sun every day? A walk in nature, if possible, can be very restorative for folks who deal with sadness due to winter time. 

I have been sitting outside in the sun for an hour or more every day. Sometimes I feel the need to be out there and just sit. I walked a couple days early in the week but I still feel so drained that I get frustrated and exhausted and feel like I’m unable to walk. Sometimes I will just stand in the sound or walk back and forth in the yard very slowly. 
 

I watched the two videos you provided. I have read some of the success stories and to be honest they have frightened me a little more because of the length it has taken many to recover. I read yours at the beginning and I admire your journey very much because of what you went through. But I feel like I’m not as strong and can’t make it so long before feeling ok. I can’t imagine being years out and stuff feeling like this. So, sometimes I will poke around there but for the most part I’ve felt overwhelmed and scared that I will be in this spot for a very long time. 
 

2 hours ago, Shep said:

You may also want to read these threads:

 

How psychiatric drugs remodel your brain

 

What is happening in your brain?

 

I had read the first one and the trellis analogy was nice. 
 

the second one was informative as well. 

2 hours ago, Shep said:

This is a great way to view it. It's the "overall" improvements that show up over time that are so important. 

I am trying to look at the week by week and I think that I did in the last few weeks, but the way I got there was by analyzing myself every day. I just realized that doing this, writing here, going through my day writing everything down is what is making my day pass. Without it I feel lost and many time unable to “change the channel”. I feel a little stuck. 
 

last night I had a million racing thoughts in my head. It was confusing, alerting and pretty uncomfortable and I felt crazy. 

jan20-jan21

8-8:20am sad lamp and calm meditation 

9am meds

10-11am work

11am very small lunch

12-5pm was driving to and from a clinic with family friends to see about vaccine. This was stressful, confusing and brought up a lot of internal moral issues with me. I am petrified of the virus right now, so many different thoughts, concerns, worries on every front. 
6pm ate very small dinner

8-10pm racing thoughts, guilt, putting myself down, questioning how others see me.

10pm drank small cup of the chamomile and lavender tea. Steeped for short amount of time. Watched a bunch of videos of my nephews dancing and laughed because it was cute and cried because I miss them and I feel like life is not happening. Cried a little and wanted to cry more but didn’t/couldn’t/too tired

10:15pm laid in bed knowing I was wide awake

11pm Calm sleep meditation didn’t help

12am awake

2am woke up, turned on iPad Netflix on low volume. The chatter helped me fall asleep, I wasn’t looking at the screen

4:30 am awake, Michael Sealey on phone plus iPad still on in background. 
6:30am woke up, Michael Sealy still on and turned off iPad, tossed and turned

7am awake. Read through Shep’s reply and watched the videos, read the threads, now typing this
 

 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

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  • Mentor

Trying, during my WD and recovery, I too feared I couldn't take it forever.  Looking back, I realized that not every minute of every day was miserable. I was able to enjoy our son's junior high concerts as you enjoyed your family's videos.  There is something inside you that still connects with the joy of life.  You are seeing windows, albeit brief, and that is reason to hope. There is no single path to recovery, and no timeline.  But you can be confident you'll recover.  Anyone who wants to can.  Keep coming here for support!

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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  • Administrator
21 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

I have been sitting outside in the sun for an hour or more every day. Sometimes I feel the need to be out there and just sit. I walked a couple days early in the week but I still feel so drained that I get frustrated and exhausted and feel like I’m unable to walk. Sometimes I will just stand in the sound or walk back and forth in the yard very slowly. 

 

It's good you're getting outside. I know it's exhausting, but in the long run, the fresh air and sunshine are helpful. 

 

21 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

I have read some of the success stories and to be honest they have frightened me a little more because of the length it has taken many to recover. I read yours at the beginning and I admire your journey very much because of what you went through. But I feel like I’m not as strong and can’t make it so long before feeling ok. I can’t imagine being years out and stuff feeling like this. So, sometimes I will poke around there but for the most part I’ve felt overwhelmed and scared that I will be in this spot for a very long time. 

 

Understandable, but please note it's not the same level of hell all the way through. And this experience builds strength You're stronger than you know.

 

21 hours ago, tryingtosurvive330 said:

8-10pm racing thoughts, guilt, putting myself down, questioning how others see me.

 

You're carrying more weight than you need to.


Shame, guilt, regret, and self-criticism

Rebuilding self-confidence, accepting anxiety

 

Dealing With Emotional Spirals

 

This is a great post off of Benzo Buddies:

 

Benzo Lies That Have Been Busted

 

Question - do you feel any effect at all when you take the Escitalopram? Do you feel any change overall since you reinstated? 

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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tryingtosurvive330

I had read most of those threads except for the benzobuddies one which did list out how I feel a lot. And I never used to harp on myself so much for these things. Just for my reassurance, its the same situation even though I wasn’t tapering off a be so, but and ssri, right?

1 hour ago, Shep said:

Question - do you feel any effect at all when you take the Escitalopram? Do you feel any change overall since you reinstated? 

I really tried to think about this, I had thought about it in passing but didn’t really focus on how it was going overall. I truly do not know how I feel. I know that the overwhelming anxiety had subsided just a few days prior to the escitalopram. And I kind of remember when I first started I still had some really awful days where I felt flat, empty and so depressed. Right now I’m not happy. I ruminate a ton, still. I’m obsessing over coronavirus news where I had been able to be somewhat logical about it over the course of 2020. But it’s a little different? I am unmotivated and kind of scared to do anything. But sit on the couch, move positions once in awhile and eat when I feel like I just have to (eating has been a little easier but still very little desire and I have started to eat less and less). I also noticed I have to take a lot of deep breaths, feel the need to sigh all the time. Do a lot of deep breathing. I’ve taken the reinstatement for 10 days now. Today will be 11. 
 

jan21-jan22

7-8am Read on SA, wrote my responses, watched the videos. Sad lamp ten mins

8am calm meditation 

9-9:35am Sat in shower

10-10:45am Sat outside. Cried for just a few seconds. 
11-11:30am was on computer, chatted with boss for just a minute, but was doing a lot of googling on covid stuff. 
11:45-12:50pm drove to Local garden with mom. Walked about ten minutes and sat for 10-15. 
1pm ate one banana. No appetite but stomach was hungry. Didn’t feel like eating

2pm ate a small bowl of a squash/potato salad thing. Random stuff rest of afternoon. Tried to nap for the first time since this ordeal because I had been trying to stay awake all day so I could sleep all night. But couldn’t do it. House phone rang several times, got a couple texts. Was watching tv, looking up more news. 
6:15pm ate a lot of soup. But it was just a lot of light radish veggies and clear broth, so extremely low calorie. 
9:30pm took 1 Tylenol. Leg was sore...it wasn’t bad but was annoying me. watched tv and texted friend. 
10:30 Went to lay in bed. iPad Netflix was on and I think I fell asleep around 11pm-12am, but closer to 11. 
4:20am woke up. Calm sleep meditation 
4:40am woke up. Replayed meditation 
5am woke up. Michael sealey 
6am woke up. Michael sealey
6:30am woke up. Went to restroom. Stomach felt a little funny. 
7-8am read on SA, writing my journal, Calm meditation. Small nervousness/uneasiness

 

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

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tryingtosurvive330

@mstimc thanks for reading my posts and letting me know what you can see and that you believe I’m recovering. Sometimes it’s very hard to believe, even when I read through my own stuff and can see slight changes. I wish I could believe in myself as much as I’ve believed in others. It’s so frustrating, why can’t I see that I can do it too?

Zoloft 100mg - June 2015-April 2018 - 2 month taper, had extreme antsiness (different from my normal anxiety) previously said 25mg, was wrong

Xanax 0.25-0.5mg - Aug 2018- Dec 2020 - Rarely took, probably less than every other month. Over 2020 holidays took 0.5mg 5-6times

Escitalopram 10mg - Aug 2018 - Nov 2020 - tapered over 5 months:

June 25 2020 - Aug 14 2020 - Can't remember what I did but assuming it was 5mg this whole time.

Aug 14 2020 - Oct 24th 2020?? - 2.5mg for awhile, then tried every 27 hrs...did some weird thing where I kept trying to extend the length of hours, up to 36. This is where my symptoms got bad but I was able to tolerate as it was more fatigue and irritability.

Oct 25 2020 - mid Nov 2020 - 1.25mg ever 24-36 hours, then I stopped completely. These are also estimates because I was cutting the pills and this is an eighth of 10mg but by this time, it was basically dust. I tried just having the dust toward the end.

Dec 27 2020 was when I began having major crying spells and depressive, empty/hopeless feeling dead thoughts. Had a couple ok days and a couple more really bad ones a week out.

Reinstated Escitalopram 0.15mg - Jan 12 2021 - doing my best to measure 0.15mg but it may be closer to 0.14-0.145mg

 

 

 

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