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Apathy, anhedonia, emotional numbness, emotional anesthesia

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Terry4949
On 15/02/2018 at 11:17 PM, Hellbutrin said:

Yes, I am also in month 7 and depression and anhedonia are the two symptoms that I primarily struggle with. Have you seen any fluctuation in your symptoms so far or have they just pretty much been a steady state of misery? I haven't had ONE solid window in all of this time. It's INCREDIBLE to me that the one thing that should never be able to be taken from us is our connection with ourselves and this condition completely ravages our self relationship. 

Hellbutrin as of the 1st of March it will be twelve months of for me and depression and anhendonia are far worse no windows either also now the last few weeks I have started waking up with such inner rage it’s unbelievable I feel so angry at everything even if my dog barks I want to explode I have a steady state of misery no fluctuations I spend most of my days thinking what’s the point 

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Downbutnotout
10 hours ago, Terry4949 said:

Hellbutrin as of the 1st of March it will be twelve months of for me and depression and anhendonia are far worse no windows either also now the last few weeks I have started waking up with such inner rage it’s unbelievable I feel so angry at everything even if my dog barks I want to explode I have a steady state of misery no fluctuations I spend most of my days thinking what’s the point 

 I started counseling today with a different person. Have you two tried this? I think if we keep waiting for this just to happen on its own, it’s not going to happen. 

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Offforgood
On 2/15/2018 at 3:17 PM, Hellbutrin said:

Yes, I am also in month 7 and depression and anhedonia are the two symptoms that I primarily struggle with. Have you seen any fluctuation in your symptoms so far or have they just pretty much been a steady state of misery? I haven't had ONE solid window in all of this time. It's INCREDIBLE to me that the one thing that should never be able to be taken from us is our connection with ourselves and this condition completely ravages our self relationship. 

I find it hard to evaluate what i m going through. People around me tell me how much I am improved but I still feel no joy r motivation.  I got a couple of flashes of excitement maybe a minute at most and I feel almost wondrous that it happened and later I think how cruel it was like it was almost taunting me.  I m in a bad state today feel like I am going backward.. depressed, tired and total lack of motivation.  I m really discouraged today.

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Terry4949
8 hours ago, Offforgood said:

I find it hard to evaluate what i m going through. People around me tell me how much I am improved but I still feel no joy r motivation.  I got a couple of flashes of excitement maybe a minute at most and I feel almost wondrous that it happened and later I think how cruel it was like it was almost taunting me.  I m in a bad state today feel like I am going backward.. depressed, tired and total lack of motivation.  I m really discouraged today.

Offforgood I understand how you are feeling I see so many of us in this position on here everyday we hope that we will see that glimmer of hope or improvement but when it doesn’t come it’s a hard road I am definitely worse now than I was 12 months ago and like you I feel like I’m going backwards it is very hard when we feel no joy or have no motivation as everything becomes a daily struggle I hope soon we see some sort of a window just to give us enough hope that this does all end

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aberdeen
On 2/15/2018 at 6:17 PM, Hellbutrin said:

It's INCREDIBLE to me that the one thing that should never be able to be taken from us is our connection with ourselves and this condition completely ravages our self relationship. 

This!

Its inhumane and a crime that prescription medication can do this to a human being. I struggled so much with that but I just wanted to pop in and offer some hope. Before I pooped out anhedonia was the first thing that started. Then I crashed and was overwhelmed with so many hideously terrifying symptoms the anhedonia was buried. When I settled somewhat and began my slow taper, the symptoms slowly lifted, over the years of tapering, until after being off completely for some time I noticed my windows were long and nearly complete returns to "normal"....except for anhedonia. This has by far been the longest and most persistent symptom. However, recently I am noticing that I take actual joy in beautiful landscapes around me again, and have a strong desire to get back to painting, photography, and music has the ability to stir me again. While I still struggle with being lazy and not taking much action towards these feelings (like taking a painting class or actually getting supplies and doing it) I am AMAZED I even feel like it at all compared to the stone statue of myself that I was for 7-8 years. Its a big difference but happened very slowly. As for why bothering to taper, I tried coming off a large Effexor dose within 3 months and suffered so terribly its hard to even describe. After settling on Paxil where I can't say I stabilized, but for sure healed from the worst of the crisis period....my symptoms during the subsequent 4+ year taper were nothing compared to the hell I experienced when doing it too fast. Its very much worth going slowly. In my experience anyway. But have hope...I think this anhedonia is leaving me. I feel colour seeping back into my sense of self and it helps re-connect with the "me-ness" that makes us individual humans (if that makes sense). The absolute loss of self and our memories, feelings,thoughts, thrills, sorrows, emotions....is horrifying...but I have healed SO much from this. I'm definitely coming back.

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Offforgood

Hi Aberdeen

i m so happy for you and envious .. I have been living with anhedonia for years both on and now off meds.. in fact the reason why I got off meds basically ct was because of the anhedonia.. i m going into my 8th month without meds and it has been and still is at times terrifying.. my prolonged history being on meds and overmedicated most of the time is in my profile.. I realize but still can’t accept that I may have this anhedonia for years since at age 69 I don’t think I have that much time.. but I m happy for you and hope I will get there too .. 

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Hellbutrin
5 hours ago, aberdeen said:

This!

Its inhumane and a crime that prescription medication can do this to a human being. I struggled so much with that but I just wanted to pop in and offer some hope. Before I pooped out anhedonia was the first thing that started. Then I crashed and was overwhelmed with so many hideously terrifying symptoms the anhedonia was buried. When I settled somewhat and began my slow taper, the symptoms slowly lifted, over the years of tapering, until after being off completely for some time I noticed my windows were long and nearly complete returns to "normal"....except for anhedonia. This has by far been the longest and most persistent symptom. However, recently I am noticing that I take actual joy in beautiful landscapes around me again, and have a strong desire to get back to painting, photography, and music has the ability to stir me again. While I still struggle with being lazy and not taking much action towards these feelings (like taking a painting class or actually getting supplies and doing it) I am AMAZED I even feel like it at all compared to the stone statue of myself that I was for 7-8 years. Its a big difference but happened very slowly. As for why bothering to taper, I tried coming off a large Effexor dose within 3 months and suffered so terribly its hard to even describe. After settling on Paxil where I can't say I stabilized, but for sure healed from the worst of the crisis period....my symptoms during the subsequent 4+ year taper were nothing compared to the hell I experienced when doing it too fast. Its very much worth going slowly. In my experience anyway. But have hope...I think this anhedonia is leaving me. I feel colour seeping back into my sense of self and it helps re-connect with the "me-ness" that makes us individual humans (if that makes sense). The absolute loss of self and our memories, feelings,thoughts, thrills, sorrows, emotions....is horrifying...but I have healed SO much from this. I'm definitely coming back.

Knowing that it's possible for this condition to last YEARS is so completely and utterly terrifying that I don't have words for it. I C/T from Wellbutrin 7 months ago and since then I haven't had one single window where I've felt even close to normal. I'm too far along in C/T to reinstate, so I'm terrified that I might have drawn out my PAWS because I didn't taper. I still have significant depression and anxiety but I think I'm learning to live with the constant misery that has become my everyday existence. I know how profound that sounds, but it's genuinely the way that I feel. I started taking wellbutrin to help with some mild anxiety that I had related to starting graduate school two years ago. I NEVER had depression prior to taking the medication. I can't stress that enough, this drug has not only ROBBED me completely of my ability to feel happy but it has also catapulted me into periods of suicidal depression. I can only describe these periods as suicidal depression, because the inability to think about anything other than my own misery makes me want to literally DIE. There's nothing going on in my life that would make me sad or depressed enough to actually fall into a depression because of my life circumstances. If anything, my life is going really well right now, and I don't have any reason to feel depressed. I guess I would describe it as more of a chemical depression, my mind doesn't have the ability or energy to gravitate towards anything positive because of how anxious and depressed I am constantly. I keep waiting for the infamous windows to come, but I haven't seen any fluctuation in my symptoms enough to characterize what I feel as a window. I just pray to god that this isn't a permanent state for me, and that I will start to improve. I keep hearing that 7 months is too early in withdrawal to start noticing improvements, but I can't imagine being stuck this way for years. It's hell on earth. Did your anhedonia gradually improve or go in a windows and waves pattern?

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Hellbutrin
4 hours ago, Offforgood said:

Hi Aberdeen

i m so happy for you and envious .. I have been living with anhedonia for years both on and now off meds.. in fact the reason why I got off meds basically ct was because of the anhedonia.. i m going into my 8th month without meds and it has been and still is at times terrifying.. my prolonged history being on meds and overmedicated most of the time is in my profile.. I realize but still can’t accept that I may have this anhedonia for years since at age 69 I don’t think I have that much time.. but I m happy for you and hope I will get there too .. 

Hi Offforgood,

 

Have you seen any definitive proof that anhedonia does eventually totally go away?

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apathetic

Goodbye apathy!
It's possible to feel again. Acceptance combined with patience is the key.

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Offforgood

Hi Hellbutrin

i only have seen a few posts on here where anhedonia goes away but it seems to take years.  Very discouraging.

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aberdeen

I have seen 2 examples today while reading of people who recovered. I dont know their timeframe. One is Songbird and one is ChessieCat. I did have anhedonia for years, however I was either on high doses or tapering for almost all of that time frame. Once I was completely off is when I noticed it going away in a window/wave pattern, not a gradual linear or sudden thing by any means. I know what you mean about the little flashes and how cruel they are. I think my recovery from anhedonia once I was off the meds would have been more complete/fast were I not a middle aged woman going through a major hormonal shift. Many symptoms of peri-menopause in women involve exactly this sort of thing. I know how much hormones can wreak havoc as the post-baby hormones are exactly what landed me on these drugs in the first place. So consider this, when my timeline seems frightening. I think a lot of women find our healing more complex/lengthened by the impact of changing reproductive hormone levels. It probably won't take as long as you fear. 

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Downbutnotout

I am very concerned I have something else wrong with me. I did start out with a depression. It’s turned into something much worse. I wish it was as simple as updosing. I think I’m missing something more important here. Could there be other factors contributing to this? Maybe it’s not one size fits all. 

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Downbutnotout
7 hours ago, aberdeen said:

I have seen 2 examples today while reading of people who recovered. I dont know their timeframe. One is Songbird and one is ChessieCat. I did have anhedonia for years, however I was either on high doses or tapering for almost all of that time frame. Once I was completely off is when I noticed it going away in a window/wave pattern, not a gradual linear or sudden thing by any means. I know what you mean about the little flashes and how cruel they are. I think my recovery from anhedonia once I was off the meds would have been more complete/fast were I not a middle aged woman going through a major hormonal shift. Many symptoms of peri-menopause in women involve exactly this sort of thing. I know how much hormones can wreak havoc as the post-baby hormones are exactly what landed me on these drugs in the first place. So consider this, when my timeline seems frightening. I think a lot of women find our healing more complex/lengthened by the impact of changing reproductive hormone levels. It probably won't take as long as you fear. 

I’m happy for you. That’s great. 

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Downbutnotout
1 hour ago, Downbutnotout said:

I am very concerned I have something else wrong with me. I did start out with a depression. It’s turned into something much worse. I wish it was as simple as updosing. I think I’m missing something more important here. Could there be other factors contributing to this? Maybe it’s not one size fits all.  Maybe blaming everything on wd is not realistic . There are exceptions to every rule aren’t there? I am really impressed with the knowledge on here and how many people are helped. 

 

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Hellbutrin

Emotional blunting and lack of positive emotions has been my %100 most persistent symptoms throughout this whole process and I was just wanting to get some feedback to see if this does eventually resolve itself. I can't imagine a life where I will feel like this forever, it seems kind of pointless. 

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dreamingneonblack

Hello community,

 

Has anybody felt like they are unable to connect with or feel empathy for others while in W/D? I always considered empathy to be one of my greatest traits and have recently realized that I've not been this way since I tapered from my most difficult downdose over a year ago. I remember being more numb when I was on my full paxil dose, but this feels different.

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wantrelief

Thank you so much for writing this update regarding your daughter.  I have severe apathy whilst still on medication (have reached tolerance) and am trying to taper off.  It brings me a lot of hope to know this symptom does pass as it is really hard to live like this.  Your daughter is so lucky to have you by her side.

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JS11

Yes, thankyou DrugFreeProf.,

 

Hope is frequently so hard to find and hold onto especially when one is in the thick of withdrawal symptoms.  I reiterate what WantRelief said.  

 

take care,

JS11
 

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spokety
27 minutes ago, DrugfreeProf said:

My daughter, Lex1992, has had EXTREME anhedonia and SEVERE apathy for a good part of the time she's been off meds, which is now going on 17 months.  Recently, the anhedonia has begun to lift--she now is laughing and showing positive emotions, after being emotionally flat and virtually silent throughout this period period.  Improvement has been very, very slow and gradual, but lately it has occurred suddenly and remarkably. So hang in there-- it does get better!=

Glad your on here doing research and interacting with other victims.  My parents refuse to do it, no matter how many times I ask them to :(.  I've had the same anhedonia and apathy from when I took Saphris (an anti-psychotic) a while back.  My problem is every time I start to get my emotions back I have some type of "episode" that lands me in the hospital.  Sometimes it's my parents fault, sometimes it's my fault.  I don't really know how to stop this cycle.

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Downbutnotout
1 hour ago, DrugfreeProf said:

My daughter, Lex1992, has had EXTREME anhedonia and SEVERE apathy for a good part of the time she's been off meds, which is now going on 17 months.  Recently, the anhedonia has begun to lift--she now is laughing and showing positive emotions, after being emotionally flat and virtually silent throughout this period period.  Improvement has been very, very slow and gradual, but lately it has occurred suddenly and remarkably. So hang in there-- it does get better!=

Yes, it would be nice to know this would somehow go away one day. It’s such a hard thing to live with. I’m glad your dtr got her humanity back. 

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spokety
3 hours ago, Downbutnotout said:

Yes, it would be nice to know this would somehow go away one day. It’s such a hard thing to live with. I’m glad your dtr got her humanity back. 

How long have you been off the meds? Have you seen any improvement?

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Downbutnotout

I didn’t taper down. So don’t go by me. No, I am not doing well. Others on here are improving all the time. I am on 6 beads. 

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Frogie
On March 7, 2018 at 12:53 AM, dreamingneonblack said:

Hello community,

 

Has anybody felt like they are unable to connect with or feel empathy for others while in W/D? I always considered empathy to be one of my greatest traits and have recently realized that I've not been this way since I tapered from my most difficult downdose over a year ago. I remember being more numb when I was on my full paxil dose, but this feels different.

Haven't heard from you forever!

 

Are you done with your meds or still taking them?

 

I hope you are doing well.

 

Take care,

Frogie xx

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spokety
5 hours ago, Downbutnotout said:

I didn’t taper down. So don’t go by me. No, I am not doing well. Others on here are improving all the time. I am on 6 beads. 

I didn't taper down either.  I stopped cold turkey.  I'm sorry your not doing well.  I haven't had any real improvement either.  Did others give tips on how to improve?  What does 6 beads mean?

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Downbutnotout

I take 6 beads out of a effexor tablet and take it. It was supposed to help my wd symptoms.,but I’m not sure it does much. It helps the anxiety a little. I also take 50 mg if trazadone.  

 I wish I was off everything . 

 

Im in a depression, and that’s the way it is. I was before I stopped the drugs. Actually, the doctor wanted to switch me to other things and I had a bad reaction

 

it would’ve been better to stop this stuff when I was feeling okay. So if you did that you’re further ahead. I took this for 25 years so I have a lot to overcome. It would’ve been better to stop it before I ever took it. 

 

i am flat on my emotions, and haven’t felt like myself for 9 months when the latest episode started.

 

lots of people on here are doing well. So, I’m not the best person to talk to. I was hoping I’d feel a lot better by now. 

 

How about you? 

 

 

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Offforgood

Hi I have been off all meds since July 2017 basically CT I was emotionally blunted but now feeling all emotions and beginning to relive and remember childhood traumas and pain and dealing with chronic apathy anxiety and no motivation to do my work.  I curse the day I started taking meds 28 YEARS ago and I have been on every med! Wish I spent my time in therapy dealing with the issues causing my apathy, procrastination etc than being over medicated all these years.. I know I need to "move on" but I get so angry!

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spokety
2 hours ago, Offforgood said:

Hi I have been off all meds since July 2017 basically CT I was emotionally blunted but now feeling all emotions and beginning to relive and remember childhood traumas and pain and dealing with chronic apathy anxiety and no motivation to do my work.  I curse the day I started taking meds 28 YEARS ago and I have been on every med! Wish I spent my time in therapy dealing with the issues causing my apathy, procrastination etc than being over medicated all these years.. I know I need to "move on" but I get so angry!

28 years? I couldn't imagine having suffered that long.  Surely you haven't been suffering everyday the past 28 years?

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Downbutnotout

At least you got some emotion going, but those are not good things to think about. 

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Zeipii

I have the same desperate situation since 11 months after just 2 weeks of bupropion use. Being a safe alternative.... a great lie. Will this anhedonia, emptiness, total pssd and fully unmotivated state ever stop. My whole life is in ruins. Any knowledge about bupropion success stories or anything related? 

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Hellbutrin

Can someone PLEASE direct me to ANY examples of individuals that recovered from anhedonia from wellbutrin withdrawal? I'm going on ten months post C/T and I haven't seen any change in this symptom at all. I have no motivation to do anything and I can't seem to get excited or feel any joy about anything. I'm so tired of feeling this way. I'm also really concerned because most of the reports that I've seen have expressed that Wellbutrin/Bupropion are usually the go to drugs that doctors recommend to treat anhedonia. I've also seen reports that Wellbutrin shares properties to amphetamines, which is terrifying because I know a lot of the side effects of amphetamine use are often permanent. I haven't had any windows in ten months and I'm desperate for reassurance that this will get better eventually. 

 

I'm supposed to be getting married in 6 months and I'd love to feel at least some semblance of happiness about it, but I just can't. I don't feel anything, I just feel like I'm going through the motions of day to day life waiting for things to get better, but they don't. 

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Meeto

mine has improved, but I'm not sure if it's completely gone as I have other issues that make it hard to enjoy things.

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Zeipii
On 8/27/2017 at 11:05 PM, Hellbutrin said:

Hi everyone,

 

I was just wondering if anyone could give me some feedback on their experiences with anhedonia from withdrawal from antidepressants and how long it lasted. I tapered off of Wellbutrin completely 3 weeks ago but I only tapered for a month and a half, so I haven't seen any difference in my symptoms. I know that three weeks is not a long time to wait for symptoms to improve since I was taking Wellbutrin for over a year, but I was taking the lowest dose of the medication that I could take. I've been having SEVERE anhedonia, so much so that I can't seen to establish any level of self awareness. I've also been having a pretty difficult time concentrating the last few weeks, which is pretty concerning to me as well. I've had some reassuring feedback from the site administrators on some of my other posts, but I wanted to see if any other site users have experienced prolonged anhedonia when using a relatively low dose of a antidepressant over an extended amount of time, and what type of changes they experienced when they noticed the anhedonia starting to ease away. Any feedback is much appreciated!

Total anhedonia and pssd from Wellbutrin, no improvement in one year. Bedridden, lost work, lost everything. Sorry to tell this... 

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Altostrata

Hellbutrin, you keep on coming up with these odd questions. Please go to the Introductions forum and search for

 

"anhedonia"

"emotional blunting"

"emotional anesthesia"

 

to see how people are doing. Emotional anesthesia is a very, very common consequence of taking psychiatric drugs. If no one ever recovered from it, we would tell you. Usually it is accompanied by other withdrawal symptoms. such as sleeplessness or depersonalization, which also very gradually dissipate.

 

You seem to think you are the only person experiencing these symptoms, and you are doomed for eternity. Neither is true.

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Altostrata

Merged similar topics. Yes, people recover, very gradually. It can take a long time and be very frustrating.

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potions

I just have a general question about anhedonia/emotional numbness. It seems to be accepted that most people recover from withdrawal-induced emotional numbness over time. However, there are countless accounts of people 10+ years out still suffering from PSSD, and in almost every single one of these accounts, the sufferers have anhedonia. Everywhere I look I see people with PSSD (and particularly genital numbness) complaining about emotional anesthesia. Most recovery stories from PSSD involve recovery from anhedonia too. My friend’s anhedonia resolved right when his PSSD did, and in every single window where his genital numbness improved, his anhedonia did too. Ask anyone with pssd/genital anesthesia and they’ll most likely tell you they have anhedonia too. I’m not saying that everyone with withdrawal-induced anhedonia has PSSD. But I’d be willing to bet that almost every single person with PSSD/genital anesthesia has anhedonia, and there are multiple cases of people having PSSD for years and years after coming off the drug, sometimes decades. I’ve messaged long term sufferers of PSSD and they still have anhedonia, even people 14 years out. This is disturbing. How can I be sure my emotional numbness will improve over time? I still have genital anesthesia.

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Alan47

Ever since i came off luvox about 3 months ago I can't be able to feel real pleasure or enjoyment from things such as exercising, substances like alcohol, caffeine, cannabis, music. Is there any reason for this?

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