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LanaCoFireBird: Lamictal withdrawal and recovery


LanaCoFireBird

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Hey all,

I'm really glad to be here. I'm currently on Lamictal (118) and tapering off of it

I was doing pill splitting before but I did my research and learned that wasn't a good idea and not as accurate. I would like some help finding support with measuring and factoring the water into the measuring for the liquid taper method.

 

Back in 2017, I did the first half of my taper and went from  250-150. I remember struggling with a host of physical symptoms, especially GI symptoms with all felt quite disruptive but something I was able to tolerate at the time and at the rate I was going. Low mood and irritability was hard too. what I struggled with most was the brain fog and cognitive difficulties, and not only that but feeling really awful and depressed and hopeless about the brain fog and cognitive difficulties.

I imagine feeling bad about all of that is something I might struggle with again as I start part two of my withdrawal after a long pause. I’m going slower this time but I know it gets harder near the end.

 

I have very strong feelings of wanting to be off Meds, especially lamictal, which I’ll go into in my background story.

—————————

 

Here's a little background about me:

I was put on psych meds (Dexedrine)  at age 8 against my will- my mom took me into both therapy and a psychiatrist hoping it would 'fix me'.  My mom kept going on and on about how it was a miracle drug and how it would change my life for the better and fix something that was missing within me. She saw ‘outward results’

Meanwhile my inner world, I had skyrocketing anxiety and felt rigid, overly measured and controlled on this med.

But no one seemed to care because I was more compliant and ‘successful’ and had very good grades. No one seemed to care about my inner experience, how I felt like a former shell of myself, or about the trauma growing up or the ptsd. All that seemed to matter to those around me was that I was functional and compliant.

 

 

I’ve spent most of my life recovering  and learning to believe that  I don’t need fixing.

I remember parts of my personality  and essence before the meds. I was bright creative and curious. I was very sensitive and easily excitable and saw patterns all over the place. I embodied this chaotic non conformist energy and I once felt comfortable with that.

I’m definitely neurodivergent but I remember what it was like to embody and bask in that without shame when I was younger.

People quickly saw me as too much.

 

I want to discover who I am as an adult without meds and the freedom to embrace my essence.

 

——————————

 

My Lamictal and bipolar diagnosis story is a whole other thing but felt similar to my Dexedrine story in some ways, even though I felt quite different on this one.

 

As a young adult, I was living with a deeply controlling roommate who saw my natural exuberance and my neurodivergence. She saw me fumbling through CPTSD and trying to recover but having a lot of big stressful life events and not a whole lot of support. In her mind, she was convinced I had bipolar and wanted to ‘help’. She urged me to talk to a psychiatrist— say certain things to them to get a bipolar diagnosis and get on meds. She was very pushy about it eventually threatened to kick me out if I didn’t get on meds.

I admired her a lot at the time, was deep in my own shame, had not learned how to stand up for myself and scared of losing housing….so I did exactly when she suggested.

 

I was put on a whole host of psych meds before I landed on Lamictal. I will write more about it in another post in this thread, but being on lamictal has been an awful ride and I felt numb spaced out and checked out.

 

I just can’t any more and I need to get off of them and get my life back.

 

 

I'm exploring ways outside of the mental health and Pharma industries to recover and treat myself with kindness as I heal

I want to move as far as possible from the broken brain model.

 

I'm struggling with brain fog and cognition issues due to lamictal and withdrawal and often feel stuck and lost and so far away from my essence and dreams. and I often feel shame around what I've lost due to the meds and I wonder if I can get it back. I wonder who I am without meds and what it will be like to live in my body and to think and connect authentically and fully embrace what I discover. I'm withdrawing to come back to all that and embrace deep interconnection.

 

I value creativity, connection, interdependence and embracing every day magic and a sense of wonder. I'm non conforming on many counts and are hoping to find connection with others who want to embrace their authenticity and co create a world where others feel free to do the same. working on coming out of my shell and accepting myself. I'm leftist and *****. I absolutely love playing music and singing, connecting with plants and the more than human realm. I love in-depth astrology (hellenistic) and the spiritual realm

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

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  • ChessieCat changed the title to LanaCoFireBird: Lamictal withdrawal and recovery

moving down to 118 yesterday has been really hard, and I feel hopeless. Mainly hopeless because this isn't even supposed to be the hard part, and I have a long road ahead of me, and I would really love a medical professional to support me and feel overwhelmed healing on my own. I just don't feel strong enough and as I'm doing my research on this site, I'm scared about how hard the last part of the taper is...it's so far down the road and I'm struggling at 118. and I'm scared of the road ahead when I get to the smaller doses...Like I'm not even below 100 and I was put on way too much of this med in the first place... I feel hopeless about healing. I know my hopeless thoughts are partially withdrawal symptoms and I'm trying to remind myself of that, but there's other stuff going on in my life that's really hard ontop of this.

 

Giving up and staying on the Lamictal isn't an option. I feel like a former shell of myself on it, my brain and memory are fried. I can't hold down a conversation because my thoughts are so wooly and nebulous and I can't remember what was said at the beginning of a conversation. My hearing and ability to tune out background noise has gotten worse over the years...so combined with this and the cognitive, and memory issues---I miss a lot and can't hold down a conversation...and I'm longing more than anything to connect deeply with my friends, meet new people and offer support and it's so hard. plus I feel so bad about all these things and my intelligence when I'm on  the lamictal. I feel my true essence is trapped inside myself and lost behind my words and can't come out.

Plus it increases suicidal ideation, by a lot.

 

while staying on the lamictal isn't an option for those reasons and so many more. I feel hopeless and already defeated about tapering 

 

onset of symptoms came kind of quickly this evening. First the GI stuff (nausea, vomiting, whole gi system felt achy and unsteady. Then I developed itchy skin and a splotchy rash on my. arms back and collarbone/ chest area...rash has since went away

Then I have a headache near the base of my skull on the left side 

 

But worse than the physical has been my low mood. It started off paranoid/anxious and later deep depression with some suicidal ideation last night. I exhausted myself with anxiety and fell asleep. I mainly just feel hopeless about this tapering process and feeling this won't get better. I  struggled with depression both before and during lamictal (huge huge increase in that I from being on the lamictal). I have a feeling I'll still feel hopeless off of it once this is all over, and I know I'm in for a bumpy ride with it during. I just don't feel strong enough.

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

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  • Moderator

Dear @LanaCoFireBird

Welcome to SA! 

I am so sorry you have been through so much in life and have been put on psych drugs so young. How have you tapered from 150 to 118? Are you using the 10% taper every 4 weeks method? I am adding some links here for more info on that. 

 

Why taper by 10% of my dosage? - Tapering - Surviving Antidepressants

Why taper? SERT transporter occupancy studies show importance of gradual change in plasma concentration - Tapering - Surviving Antidepressants

The Brassmonkey Slide Method of Micro-tapering - Tapering - Surviving Antidepressants

 

While it is not impossible that you feel the result from the cut in such a short time, it would be highly unlikely. Perhaps some of it is anticipatory anxiety -  sort of a nocebo effect? It is also possible that you are going through a wave and the two just coincide. 

 

I am saying that so that you don't take these feelings as an indication of future patterns and lose hope. Withdrawal exaggerates emotions. 

I am wondering if it would be helpful for you to get therapy to support you during this difficult time. You speak of trauma as a kid and there are some very effective trauma therapies our there these days - I do IFS and have done EMDR. Lots of people are forced into therapy because of the powerful emotions that WD brings but it helps them heal not just withdrawal issues but deep seated trauma. You can check the thread of @hayduke who has done a lot of EMDR and come out of withdrawal healed. Now, this is difficult work and may unsettle things and may be best left for after withdrawal but for many of us with trauma withdrawal has unsettled things so much that we might as well try to do the work. 

 

If none of those appeal, you might try some CBT to get you out of these thought distortions that promote hopelessness. Fortunetelling and all-or-nothing thinking are the cognitive distortion that tell you that withdrawal will always be like this. CBT does not usually treat trauma but can help manage difficult emotions such as anxiety and hopelessness. 

https://www.verywellmind.com/ten-cognitive-distortions-identified-in-cbt-22412

 

Also have a look at this thread that helps with tips on how to deal with difficult emotions during withdrawal. Many people find Claire Weekes' methods helpful as well. Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms - Symptoms and self-care - Surviving Antidepressants

 

So to recap,

1) withdrawal will not always be difficult and the fact that you have a difficult time now does not predict how it will go down the road. Most people get windows and waves 

2) you will get better if you go slow enough and hold when things are overwhelming; your tapering speed may be slower than others and slower than 10% (mine is) but you can minimize symptoms by listening to your body and calibrating to it

3) You will not always feel this way and you likely won't feel this way after you are done tapering - you don't really have a baseline to compare to since you were put on these drugs young so there is no reason to assume that the baseline is bad - your joyful, vibrant, curious self will emerge from under this drugging

4) if you do have issues because of the trauma that you have endured (seems like you did not have the most attuned parenting out there) there are many therapy models now that can offer true healing. I highly recommend the book 'The Body Keeps the Score' by Bessel van der Kolk to help in the understanding of trauma. He also offers a review of various ways to heal. 

5) At the very least (even if you want to postpone or not consider trauma therapy) you can help manage your emotional symptoms through the tips in the link above or through applying CBT principles. 

 

You are going to be OK! 

Take care of yourself, 

 

 OMW

 

PS. Some more links on what to expect from the withdrawal process: 

The Windows and Waves Pattern of Stabilization - Symptoms and self-care - Surviving Antidepressants

What is happening in your brain? - Symptoms and self-care - Surviving Antidepressants

How psychiatric drugs remodel your brain - Symptoms and self-care - Surviving Antidepressants

 

Success stories: Recovery from psychiatric drug withdrawal - Surviving Antidepressants

 

 

I am not a doctor and this should not be considered medical advice. You can use the information provided in whatever way you want and all decisions on your treatment are yours. 

 

If you would like to get a response from me directly please type @Onmyway some place in your message so I get notified of your post. I am not able to follow all of the threads all the time.

 

Aug  2000 - July 2003 (ct, 4-6 wk wd) , citalopram 20 mg,  xanax prn, wellbutrin for a few months, trazodone prn 

Dec 2004 - July 2018 citalopram 20 mg, xanax prn (rarely used)

Aug 2018 - citalopram 40 mg (self titrated up)

September 2018 - January 2019 tapered citalopram - 40/30/20/10/5 no issues until a week after reaching 0

Feb 2019 0.25 xanax - 0.5/day (3 weeks) over to klonopin 0.25 once a day to manage severe wd

March 6, reinstated citalopram 2.5 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 mg for sleep 2-3 times a week

Apr 1st citalopram 2.0 mg (liquid), klonopin 0.25 once a week, 

citalopram (liquid) 4/14/19 -1.8 mg, 5/8/19 - 1.6 mg,  7/27/19 -1.5 mg,  8/15/19 - 1.35, 2/21/21 - 1.1 (smaller drops in between), 6/20/21 - 1.03 mg, 8/7/21- 1.025, 8/11/21 - 1.02, 8/15/21 - 1.015, 9/3/21 - 0.925 (fingers crossed!), 10/8/21 - 0.9, 10/18/21 - 0.875, 12/31/21 - 0.85, 1/7/22 - 0.825, 1/14/22 - 0.8, 1/22/22 - 0.785

 

Supplements: magnesium citrate and bi-glycinate

 

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thank you so much for all the info and support!

 

 

- for the tapering, I stepped down to 118 before I knew about the safest and recommended tapering rate--- ie before I discovered these forums and similar groups.

But making a plan to stay on this for a month. and figure out the next steps in tapering down safely. I would ideally like to get a  lamictal prescription in liquid form and measure  it out and go at that rate myself. I feel nervous about making my own and getting everything right, but that's my second option if it comes down to it.

 

- I think I do have a lot of anticipatory anxiety, and a combination of a wave. The first 3 days after a cut are especially emotional but I've been noticing it evening out. 

 

- I've been in talk therapy for awhile for trauma stuff, and while it's helping somewhat,  it wasn't reaching deep enough in the way I needed

With talk therapy, I found that I was able to understand my feelings and patterns very well, and it helped improve my self awareness. I understood my inner landscape very well on a cognitive level and even on deeper levels but I kept repeating the same patterns and feeling the same way, and feeling the same way in my body. Understanding and seeing patterns is super helpful and valuable and I've learned a lot from it, but I'm realizing I'm needing something more at this point in my journey.

I'm realizing I need something more somatic based. that realization came last year which lead me to reading "the body keeps Score", which lead me to becoming especially interested in EMDR Therapy, which  lead me to seeking out an EMDR therapist and starting a few months ago. I'm very interested in exploring other forms of bilateral stimulation.

IFS seems like something I would really love to look into and explore as well. I know in the past I benefited from art therapy and am thinking of starting up my own journey with that again. Also, I used to write a lot, some journalling and some abstract stuff.

I want to start that all again...lamictal has made things so foggy and nebulous and especially with the journaling part, sometimes I struggle to put words together and I know I used to be very good at that and enjoyed writing and expressing myself in that way. part of me wants to push through and continue writing for myself even though I feel self conscious about what comes out and how it sounds. as I withdraw, it might also be time to explore expression and healing in a form other than words.

 

-Based on my personality and where I am, I know that this definitely is the right time for healing trauma and doing deep dives into shadow work, therapy and emdr. I crave it and crave that kind of healing. Its just a matter of doing it in waves, finding ways to sooth  and getting the right kinds of support after. A big part of my trauma is around being put on meds at a young age, believing my brain was a bad brain and a lot of self esteem issues around intelligence and cognition. I feel some of this is coming up directly as I taper and caring for those parts as they come up and exploring the shadows makes a lot of sense to me.

I know it's a lot to process all at once...even though I can feel overwhelmed, there's a part of me that knows I need to go here and I can come out the other end.

 

 

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

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Hello @LanaCoFireBird

Welcome to SA. 

I'm sorry for what has brought you here but glad you've found us. 

 

I can relate to much of what you describe. Thank you for sharing your story.

 

You have beautifully articulated some of what is important to you:   

 

On 5/22/2022 at 5:09 PM, LanaCoFireBird said:

I’ve spent most of my life recovering  and learning to believe that  I don’t need fixing.

I remember parts of my personality  and essence before the meds. I was bright creative and curious. I was very sensitive and easily excitable and saw patterns all over the place. I embodied this chaotic non conformist energy and I once felt comfortable with that.

I’m definitely neurodivergent but I remember what it was like to embody and bask in that without shame when I was younger.

People quickly saw me as too much.

 

I want to discover who I am as an adult without meds and the freedom to embrace my essence.

 

On 5/22/2022 at 5:09 PM, LanaCoFireBird said:

I'm exploring ways outside of the mental health and Pharma industries to recover and treat myself with kindness as I heal

I want to move as far as possible from the broken brain model.

 

On 5/22/2022 at 5:09 PM, LanaCoFireBird said:

I value creativity, connection, interdependence and embracing every day magic and a sense of wonder. I'm non conforming on many counts and are hoping to find connection with others who want to embrace their authenticity and co create a world where others feel free to do the same. working on coming out of my shell and accepting myself. I'm leftist and *****. I absolutely love playing music and singing, connecting with plants and the more than human realm. I love in-depth astrology (hellenistic) and the spiritual realm

 

Maybe you could copy-paste these into a separate document, print them out and stick on your wall somewhere or carry with you in your pocket/wallet. 

You've formulated this powerful mission statement of sorts, and it will serve you well on your healing journey. 

Sometimes when things get hard it can be really useful to be reminded of why we're doing this! 

 

I certainly feel inspired and buoyed reading what you have written -- thank you for that. 

 

27 minutes ago, LanaCoFireBird said:

A big part of my trauma is around being put on meds at a young age, believing my brain was a bad brain and a lot of self esteem issues around intelligence and cognition. I feel some of this is coming up directly as I taper and caring for those parts as they come up and exploring the shadows makes a lot of sense to me.

 

You might be interested in a help topic For people who were drugged as children

I've posted there, too. You are very welcome to participate and co-create as you see fit. <3

 

Here are a few other help topics I find myself reading and revisiting again and again: 

Steps for Managing Withdrawal

Acceptance and Hope

 

I don't know whether you enjoy poetry, but in case you do: Meaning through poetry

 

Thinking of you and sending healing vibes, 

In solidarity and support,

A.

1996-2018 - misc. polypharmacy, incl. SSRIs, SNRIs, neuroleptics, lithium, benzos, stimulants, antihistamines, etc. (approx. 30+ drugs)

2012-2018 - 10mg lexapro/escitalopram (20mg?)    Jan. 2018 - 10mg -> 5mg, then from 5mg -> 2.5mg, then 0mg  -->  July 2018 - 0mg

2017(?)-2020 - vyvanse/lisdexamfetamine 60-70mg    2020-2021 - 70mg down to 0mg  -->  July 2021 - 0mg

March-April 2021 - vortioxetine 5-10mg (approx. 7 weeks total; CT)  -->  April 28th, 2021 - 0mg

supplements: magnesium powder (dissolved in water) as needed throughout the day; 1 tsp fish oil w/ morning meal; 2mg melatonin 9pm 

 

Courage is fear that has said its prayers.  - Karle Wilson Baker

love and justice are not two. without inner change, there can be no outer change; without collective change, no change matters.  - Rev. angel Kyodo williams

Holding multiple truths. Knowing that everyone has their own accurate view of the way things are.  - text on homemade banner at Afiya house

 

I am not a medical professional; this is not medical advice. 

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Weekly update- I've had my ups and downs emotionally with the events going on this week...It's a lot and just a lot of uncertainties and life transitions and tricky decisions and moving pieces. But despite all that, I feel my internal mood has evened out with the taper and I'm starting to feel more me. Usually the bad part of the taper lasts about 4 days before starting to improve, after that I start to enjoy the rest of the month. I still feel nervous and a bit sad about the length of this journey as I feel really eager to be off them. Learning to honor the slow process of tapering, healing and recovery.

The rash, headache and GI issues have smoothed out and I don't feel sickly. the only things lingering are brain fog, memory, and thoughts and words feeling like they're slow to connect,  but it's pretty baseline for lamictal symptoms. Emotionally I feel frustrated with the cognitive struggles and worry because I want to go back to school and  am doubting my memory and overall intelligence.

 

I viewed some old medical records and realize I was on some sleep meds, and Trazadone  in my childhood  and young adulthood. I also viewed My doctors notes and they tried to push all kinds of anti depressants on me and wrote that I refused. It sucks how persistent they were and that I was getting no real treatment for my depression, cptsd and underlying issues. no one even addressed it. they just tried to mask the symptoms and keep me numb and pacified 

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

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Other parts of my weekly update:

- I've also seriously cut down on my sugar intake. Aside from withdrawal, I have handful of GI issues that I'm still trying to navigate and figure out. But sugar addiction has been nearly a life long thing and I've gone though various cycles of quitting and coming back, and I want to actually make it a lasting habit.

I know there's a physiological component and an emotional component. I use sugar to cope with stress, dysregulation and overwhelm

As someone going through lamictal tapering and withdrawal, I know more intense emotions and dysregulation are going to come to more frequently. and early on in the process, I leaned extra heavily on sugar, and I'm really trying to break the cycle as early as possible so this isn't a huge factor later down the line, and also for SO many other reasons. I'll be looking on this forum and figuring out more tips with diet and sugar addiction. I'm thinking of moving to GAPS if possible

 

-There's a lot on my plate in general. And there's a part of me that might want to put the taper on pause because of how transitional things are.

. In addition to general business and constant motion,  want to apply to grad school for OT soon, I recently moved, and in many other ways, I'm reinventing myself, have lost a lot recently and I'm just going  to difficult places within me to find my truth and live it unabashedly. I know the tapering part is a big integral part of my journey, my shadow-work and my healing process. it also includes reclaiming my mind and my belief in my own mind and that it does have immense value.   It feels interconnected to everything else going on and all this growth. it IS a lot going on at once, so that just means I need to be strategic  and also have support and self regulation lined up. Having as much of possible of all that and just believing in myself and being brave.

 

- I'm leaning into the Mad Pride movement and neurodivergent pride and reframing the way I see myself and the way I was pathologized for being me and for thinking and seeing the world the way I do. I working on not internalizing these people and systems that pathologized me and outright rejecting them and just basking in the way my mind works.

 

- I have an appointment with a psychiatrist in a few weeks after not having had one in awhile. I'm nervous because of all the bad experiences I've had with them and how Psychiatry really clashes with my core values.  I'm scared he'll try to discourage me from tapering and won't offer support in my withdrawal, or that he'll tell me I'm bipolar and that my brain needs these stupid meds to work properly. every psych I've been to has been a pill pusher and didn't support me in the slightest. I'm actually just making an appointment for one reason; I want to get on liquid lamictal so I can more easily measure things out and taper at the correct rate and have more control over my withdrawal. (I'm currently pill cutting and I don't feel comfortable making my own solution) Any tips on advocating for myself in getting liquid lamictal  with out all the other unsolicited advice and all the things I hate about working with a psych? I've researched tapering rates myself and have this great community for all the other support I need. I just really want the liquid lamictal.

 

- I used to be a classical musician in my younger days and having music as a language and a way of expression really meant a lot to me. creating really meant a lot to me and was just such a positive transformative thing in my life. I've moved on from classical music for many reasons and want to learn to sing and create the kind of music I resonate with more and enjoy listening to. I've been thinking of learning keyboard and garageband alongside singing. and I'm realizing just composing and songwriting and singing is something I really want in my life in general and that I want to be part of my journey with healing from these meds.

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

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@LanaCoFireBird

 

10 minutes ago, LanaCoFireBird said:

I'll be looking on this forum and figuring out more tips with diet and sugar addiction. I'm thinking of moving to GAPS if possible

 

Help topics: 

 

 

12 minutes ago, LanaCoFireBird said:

I have an appointment with a psychiatrist in a few weeks after not having had one in awhile. I'm nervous because of all the bad experiences I've had with them and how Psychiatry really clashes with my core values.  I'm scared he'll try to discourage me from tapering and won't offer support in my withdrawal

 

Have you seen this thread?

 

 

Also, the amazing Will Hall is in Portland. 

He's included on the list in the help topic above. 

 

1996-2018 - misc. polypharmacy, incl. SSRIs, SNRIs, neuroleptics, lithium, benzos, stimulants, antihistamines, etc. (approx. 30+ drugs)

2012-2018 - 10mg lexapro/escitalopram (20mg?)    Jan. 2018 - 10mg -> 5mg, then from 5mg -> 2.5mg, then 0mg  -->  July 2018 - 0mg

2017(?)-2020 - vyvanse/lisdexamfetamine 60-70mg    2020-2021 - 70mg down to 0mg  -->  July 2021 - 0mg

March-April 2021 - vortioxetine 5-10mg (approx. 7 weeks total; CT)  -->  April 28th, 2021 - 0mg

supplements: magnesium powder (dissolved in water) as needed throughout the day; 1 tsp fish oil w/ morning meal; 2mg melatonin 9pm 

 

Courage is fear that has said its prayers.  - Karle Wilson Baker

love and justice are not two. without inner change, there can be no outer change; without collective change, no change matters.  - Rev. angel Kyodo williams

Holding multiple truths. Knowing that everyone has their own accurate view of the way things are.  - text on homemade banner at Afiya house

 

I am not a medical professional; this is not medical advice. 

Link to comment
  • 2 weeks later...

I'm trying to do weekly updates at this point. 

I'm feeling better physically. But am just struggling cognitively, and with how wooly my brain feels, how my memory feels shot and how I get overwhelmed by the small things. I feel the real me is trapped in here and I can't find me behind all the fog chaos and overwhelm. that feeling is very very frustrating. I'm not handling loud noises too well and it makes concentrating on anything difficult.

One of my symptoms from both the lamotrigine is that I just can't reach the words. it know I have lots of ideas and want to both connect and share but my language abilities have declined within the past few years of being on lamictal. 

I used to be very expressive and loved to write...but long term lamictal use has changed that, and I'm still recovering from withdrawal symptoms so for the meanwhile, I'm still struggling with that, maybe in what feels like a more amplified way.

 

Part of me feels like giving up on all my long term goals like starting school because I feel too 'stupid' and flustered.  I don't want to give up though but I don't feel very confident in my abilities to handle these challenges

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

Link to comment

In good news, I  talked to my PCP and she's been able to change my prescription format so I'm on pills that are easier to taper down slowly on and she's supporting my tapering. she's not well versed in psych meds but she's able to help me if I advocate for something I need, so at least there's that.

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

Link to comment

I also am having some feelings about still being on the propranolol and still benefiting from it. It's prn and I haven't been using it more frequently since started the withdrawal, but I find more relief from it.

Like in principle, I would like to be off everything, and I knew tapers go one at a time, and I'm making the right choice by doing the lamictal first because it's more harmful and impacting me more.

in terms of the lamictal withdrawal, I feel very irritable, overstimulated and  overwhelmed and anxious in bursts and the propanol has helped a lot with that. I feel guilty that I'm still 'dependent' and benefiting from it.

 

How do you all go about tapering prns   and should I leave it alone to stay consistent   during the lamictal withdrawal? From what Ive read, that seems wise but this guilt and icky feeling of dependence feels hard on another level.                                                  

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

Link to comment

maybe not related to withdrawal and maybe more with my own sensory issues but I'm completely overwhelmed with life, struggle with basic tasks and have low frustration tolerance. loud sounds are overwhelming and jolting and make my skin crawl and I feel alone, and week and I struggle to get through my day. I feel it's hard to explain this feeling to people not in my brain or not going through withdrawal. It feels like my brain is both exploding in little pieces and also imploding. My overwhelm is cognitive but appears emotional but it's torture and I can't get anything done because of sensory overwhelm. I can't think or do simple tasks and I have so much to get done and am not in a place where I'm able to slow down and put stuff on hold. Like I need total silence to get things done and I have to work a full time job, and commute and live near traffic and hardly get this. I feel so frustrated and defeated. 

I already had sensory issues going into this but everything feels more intense and urgent and there's so much at stake.

 

 

my last taper was like 3 weeks ago so I have mostly been stabilized or should be. but I don't know if this is normal. all I know is I'm where I am right now and need support

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

Link to comment

@ArielI truly appreciate all your resources and support and wanted to thank you for them and let you know that I've noticed them and that they are helpful.

I apologize for not replying earlier...I've been in a completely overwhelmed headspace with a million things to do that feel impossible to do and I want to do a full in depth response some time.

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

Link to comment

I wish it was socially acceptable to wear noise canceling headphones at work because I just can't right now. but my job is noisy and not that kind of place. I also wish I had a life where I didn't have to work all these hours and have a towering to do list through my withdrawal but I don't and just have to white knuckle it and figure out a way to get through it.

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

Link to comment

@LanaCoFireBird

 

7 minutes ago, LanaCoFireBird said:

I apologize for not replying earlier...I've been in a completely overwhelmed headspace with a million things to do that feel impossible to do and I want to do a full in depth response some time.

 

No worries. 

It's only natural you've got a lot going on and it feels overwhelming. 

You're here to heal, not to perform politeness in the role of Dutiful Correspondent. 

Take care of yourself first <3

Thinking of you and wishing you well,
A.

1996-2018 - misc. polypharmacy, incl. SSRIs, SNRIs, neuroleptics, lithium, benzos, stimulants, antihistamines, etc. (approx. 30+ drugs)

2012-2018 - 10mg lexapro/escitalopram (20mg?)    Jan. 2018 - 10mg -> 5mg, then from 5mg -> 2.5mg, then 0mg  -->  July 2018 - 0mg

2017(?)-2020 - vyvanse/lisdexamfetamine 60-70mg    2020-2021 - 70mg down to 0mg  -->  July 2021 - 0mg

March-April 2021 - vortioxetine 5-10mg (approx. 7 weeks total; CT)  -->  April 28th, 2021 - 0mg

supplements: magnesium powder (dissolved in water) as needed throughout the day; 1 tsp fish oil w/ morning meal; 2mg melatonin 9pm 

 

Courage is fear that has said its prayers.  - Karle Wilson Baker

love and justice are not two. without inner change, there can be no outer change; without collective change, no change matters.  - Rev. angel Kyodo williams

Holding multiple truths. Knowing that everyone has their own accurate view of the way things are.  - text on homemade banner at Afiya house

 

I am not a medical professional; this is not medical advice. 

Link to comment

I'm still feeling truly alone in this and hopeless about getting my life together during and after this. I feel like giving up. my life is too messy and hopeless even without the taper and withdrawal stuff. but my life isn't good on meds and I don't know who I am. sometimes it feels like there's no way out and no way to win. I'm feeling horrid with the way my mind is, with the mood swings, with the years lost with how long it's taking to get my stuff together. 

1993- Ritalin (unsure of of Dosage

1996- Discontinued ritalin, started dexedrine (10 mgs)

1997- started Clonodine for sleep issues from dexedrine (tapered off of it around 2002)

2007- Trazadone for sleep (not sure how long I was on it, it was less than 2 years, could have been way less)
2011-  6 month taper off Dexedrine 
2015- Lamictal (250) 2015 - Seroquel, Latuda, prn gabapentin, PRN Propranolol, haldol and PRN Ativan (discontinued all (except Ativan, propranolol and gabapentin) a 1-2 months after starting)

2017-Lamictal, September:  started taper down

2018- Lamictal-  March- down to 150, decided to pause taper 2018- Gabapentin- Discontinued PRN Gabapentin in October

2019- Ativan- discontinued PRN Ativan immediately

2022- Lamictal- April- started the taper again

2022- Lamictal- June- Currently at 100- Currently taking PRN propanolol might consider going off of it once my lamictal taper is done 

Link to comment
  • 2 weeks later...

@LanaCoFireBird

Thinking of you <3

I hope you've experienced moments of relief since your last post. 

No pressure to reply to this message, this is just me saying hello and expressing care. 

Wishes of peace and healing,

A.

 

1996-2018 - misc. polypharmacy, incl. SSRIs, SNRIs, neuroleptics, lithium, benzos, stimulants, antihistamines, etc. (approx. 30+ drugs)

2012-2018 - 10mg lexapro/escitalopram (20mg?)    Jan. 2018 - 10mg -> 5mg, then from 5mg -> 2.5mg, then 0mg  -->  July 2018 - 0mg

2017(?)-2020 - vyvanse/lisdexamfetamine 60-70mg    2020-2021 - 70mg down to 0mg  -->  July 2021 - 0mg

March-April 2021 - vortioxetine 5-10mg (approx. 7 weeks total; CT)  -->  April 28th, 2021 - 0mg

supplements: magnesium powder (dissolved in water) as needed throughout the day; 1 tsp fish oil w/ morning meal; 2mg melatonin 9pm 

 

Courage is fear that has said its prayers.  - Karle Wilson Baker

love and justice are not two. without inner change, there can be no outer change; without collective change, no change matters.  - Rev. angel Kyodo williams

Holding multiple truths. Knowing that everyone has their own accurate view of the way things are.  - text on homemade banner at Afiya house

 

I am not a medical professional; this is not medical advice. 

Link to comment

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