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Apathy, anhedonia, emotional numbness, emotional anesthesia

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raven530

It'll come. Brain is working really hard to find it's old equilibrium


PSSD, Anhedonia, Loss of Imagination and creativity, physical pressure in head all from taking 50mg Sertraline for a month back in February 2015. Not seen much improvement (if any). Time of writing this signature - 01/02/2016 (UK date format)

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Kiaza

I've been in this anhedonic state for almost a year now, don't care if I die today or after 20 years. I barely move, I tried a new hobby (roller derby) but it gives me no pleasure. Sometimes I walk a few miles but usually I stay indoors (I'm on disability now) I get nausea immediately if I feel pressure or stress at all. God this sucks.


Citalopram (Sepram): 2005 10mg, 2008 20mg, 2010 30mg, 2011 20mg, tapered 2012 for two months quit in August 2012, restarted Oct 2012 with 10mg, January 2013 20mg, February 2014 40mg, tapered in August 2014, quit in December 2014

Suprium: Oct 2012 50mg, cold turkey after one month, December 2015 50mg, quit March 2016

Xanax: Oct 2015 2mg used it when needed, quit November 2015

Opamox: January 2016 15mg 3x day, tapered in March 2016, quit April 2016

Tenox: 3 weeks in February 2016 cold turkey

Lyrica: One month in Spring 2016 cold turkey

Abilify: 2 weeks in Spring 2016 cold turkey

Mirtazapine: June 2016 - mid April 2017 cold turkey

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Newbeginning

Has anyone tried therapy to address lack of motivation/apathy?

 

Are there any success stories of people getting their motivation back? I've had 2 windows in 3 years where there was some improvement and each lasted a few weeks, but overall it has not improved even though my doses are much lower now than 3 years ago.


  • SSRIs 3-4 times in the last 14 years; would take them for 6-8 months and then taper off under dr supervision with no problems.
  • Med history prior to 2015: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6012-newbeginning-my-withdrawal-story/?p=267313#entry267313
  • 04/2015: Prozac decreased to 15mg over last 3 months; effexor held steady at 8mg; current effexor XR: 20 beads of a 75mg capsule per day (about 8mg)
  • 06/2015: Prozac: 10mg; effexor XR: 19 beads (about 7.5mg); 07/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor 18 beads; 08/2015: Prozac: 7.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • End of August: withdrawal: depressive symptoms, crying spells. Realized I was measuring prozac dose wrong for the last 2 months. Reinstated Prozac 8.5mg; Kept effexor at 17 beads. Stabilized in 5 weeks.
  • 10/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • 11/2015: Prozac: 1.9ml (7.5mg); effexor: 16 beads
  • 12/2015: Prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: 16 beads. Withdrawal: neuroemotions
  • 01/2016: prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: reinstated 17 beads, withdrawal improved; 02/2016: Prozac 1.5ml; Effexor: 17 beads; 03/2016: Prozac 1.3ml(5mg); Effexor: 17 beads (7mg)-withdrawal (flu-like malaise, lightheaded, drowsy) started end of March. April 15: reinstated Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized. 2 weeks ok. End of April: Withdrawal (neuroemotions). Eventually stabilized in April-May. Apathy improved.
  • 3 month hold until August. August 2016: apathy came back;

  • October 2016: updosed to Prozac 1.6ml. Bad reaction: anxiety, depression. End of October: went down Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized over several weeks.

  • Dec 9: tried macca for energy: anxiety/depression. Improved over several weeks, but not completely resolved.

  • Dec 31: cut Effexor 5% to 16 beads. After 9 days: withdrawal anxiety, depression; tried updosing to 17 beads Feb 7 but anxiety got worse; went down to 16 beads

    May 2017: Anxiety improved; severe depression continues

  • September 2017: finally stabilized!!!!!! 09/07/2017-12/31/2017: hold

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aberdeen

Hey NB. There are recovery stories, but theyre hard to find. I know its discouraging, I feel the same way. I once read a story of an older woman in her 60s who took 9 years to feel fully! At this point, for me, I don't find it disheartening to hear that it took many years, as long as it eventually came. This comes after fearing that its permanent. But unless it lasts until I'm 100 and finished, I guess it's not permanent. I do get little lifts (outside of those magical windows), I respond to people. If I see a group of people I like, or have a day spent with people I enjoy planned, I do feel a lift, maybe thats one stimulus that penetrates the grey. Or maybe social activity uses different receptors? I also felt great excitement the day we surprised our children with a trip to the tropics, I wonder if that would have been possible several years ago? Maybe thats improvement. Anyway I pray for complete 100% healing in this area for all of us who struggle with anhedonia. I can live with lingering symptoms (I still get mild morning anxiety for example which I never had before, or inflammatory skin issues, depression before my period, all things that worsened with WD and have remained)but not this symptom. This one I want to recover from because as you know, it's not fully living when your positive emotions are trapped somewhere. Hang in there...I know I've seen at least a few who recovered from it. Aeroman comes to mind, and Nadia, who 6 or 7 years later is reading novels again. There are others. So please have hope. I still do. Do you find anhedonia to fluctuate in intensity with your menstrual cycle? I do. Which tells me it could be hormonal (induced by meds initially), in which case, there may be things we can try eventually.


2 Timothy 1-7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Effexor 75mg to 262.5mg 2005-2010 for post partum depression

Started having poop out mid 2010, also switched generic brands, then crashed in Dec 2010 (anxiety/ "terror", intense DR, anhedonia, suicidal ideation, chills, insomnia, horrible intrusive thoughts, disorientation, ect)
Rapid "tapered" from 262.5mg Effexor in 3 months

Tried Celexa,Cipralex, then Paxil to deal with wd(this switching made things worse and added akathesia)

Found online support and started tapering Paxil 7 months after quitting Effexor (at this point was having small windows).

Paxil taper: dropped 10% every 4-8 weeks

Year 1 October 2011 to Nov 2012 20mg to 10mg

Year 2 March 2013 to Feb 2014 10mg to 4mg

Year 3 April 2014 to May 2015 4mg to 1.1mg

Year 4 June 2015 1.1mg , dropping by 10% until .5mg, after then dropped by 0.1mg every 5 weeks until 0.1mg.

Finished! Official last dose of 0.1mg on June 15/16

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apathetic

i wrote a post on one site about apathy and i'd like to share it with you, what helped me a bit.
i still wasn't feeling, but i "felt" things like hope, motivation and similar.
right now, i don't feel either hope or hopelessness. i can talk about things for example, but i don't really mean what i'm saying, because nothing is based on what i'm really thinking.

so, here's what i wrote (i was writing about depression, so i changed some things):

 

 

 

How can I help you, how did I start feeling a bit, just a tiny bit better when it comes to not being able to feel ?

- trying to stop feeding my irrational thoughts, recognizing them and trying my hardest to change them into rational ones. Apathy doesn't magically go away when you start thinking a bit more rationally, but it can help you cope a lot and make you feel that there is hope. I don't say that it's easy, but if you have enough energy, even if you have that one special hour of the day where your syndrome isn't as strong as usual, then grab that moment and try to use it on some way that can benefit your mental health.

- engaging in activities that normal people do -- trying to take care of yourself, for example. Generally, imagining how would a normal person function like and trying your hardest to do it. This is the most focused on the outside, not on the inside. Of course, on the inside too, but I know that when you're suffering from this, you mentally won't be able to do much. But mental exercise can help, and no, I'm again saying, it's not easy.

- letting it go. And by this, I mean being in the moment, trying to experience things around you. That helped me feel even a tiny bit. Example: okay, here's a good song on the radio while I'm driving. I'll try to fake happiness, singing, and then I somehow feel some tiny, tiny, tiniest pleasure in doing that. "Fake it 'til you make it", right ? That's basically the only thing we can do at this kind of situation.

 

 

"faking it" can sometimes help to adapt to the normal world. asking yourself: how would a normal person react ? focusing on rational. trying, trying, trying. waiting.


My withdrawal journey (click)

 

"If you're going through hell - keep going".

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aberdeen

Yes sometimes I can achieve the "reward" sense but without anticipation before or pleasure during the task, its hard to get into any project. Have to really push through a thicker than normal wall to get anything done.


2 Timothy 1-7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Effexor 75mg to 262.5mg 2005-2010 for post partum depression

Started having poop out mid 2010, also switched generic brands, then crashed in Dec 2010 (anxiety/ "terror", intense DR, anhedonia, suicidal ideation, chills, insomnia, horrible intrusive thoughts, disorientation, ect)
Rapid "tapered" from 262.5mg Effexor in 3 months

Tried Celexa,Cipralex, then Paxil to deal with wd(this switching made things worse and added akathesia)

Found online support and started tapering Paxil 7 months after quitting Effexor (at this point was having small windows).

Paxil taper: dropped 10% every 4-8 weeks

Year 1 October 2011 to Nov 2012 20mg to 10mg

Year 2 March 2013 to Feb 2014 10mg to 4mg

Year 3 April 2014 to May 2015 4mg to 1.1mg

Year 4 June 2015 1.1mg , dropping by 10% until .5mg, after then dropped by 0.1mg every 5 weeks until 0.1mg.

Finished! Official last dose of 0.1mg on June 15/16

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Newbeginning

Hey NB. There are recovery stories, but theyre hard to find. I know its discouraging, I feel the same way. I once read a story of an older woman in her 60s who took 9 years to feel fully! At this point, for me, I don't find it disheartening to hear that it took many years, as long as it eventually came. This comes after fearing that its permanent. But unless it lasts until I'm 100 and finished, I guess it's not permanent. I do get little lifts (outside of those magical windows), I respond to people. If I see a group of people I like, or have a day spent with people I enjoy planned, I do feel a lift, maybe thats one stimulus that penetrates the grey. Or maybe social activity uses different receptors? I also felt great excitement the day we surprised our children with a trip to the tropics, I wonder if that would have been possible several years ago? Maybe thats improvement. Anyway I pray for complete 100% healing in this area for all of us who struggle with anhedonia. I can live with lingering symptoms (I still get mild morning anxiety for example which I never had before, or inflammatory skin issues, depression before my period, all things that worsened with WD and have remained)but not this symptom. This one I want to recover from because as you know, it's not fully living when your positive emotions are trapped somewhere. Hang in there...I know I've seen at least a few who recovered from it. Aeroman comes to mind, and Nadia, who 6 or 7 years later is reading novels again. There are others. So please have hope. I still do. Do you find anhedonia to fluctuate in intensity with your menstrual cycle? I do. Which tells me it could be hormonal (induced by meds initially), in which case, there may be things we can try eventually.

 

Hi,

 

I was wondering how you were doing. It will soon be a year since you jump. I remember you saying the year you jumped was better than ever before. Was hoping you had continued to improve.

 

My anhedonia is not so much about emotion. I think I can feel emotions. Maybe not as intensely, but I do enjoy movies or TV shows or hanging out with friends. It's the motivation part that I struggle the most with. Some of the things you can do like shower regularly, work, clean your home, I can't find the will to do. I can spend months just laying on the couch, barely moving. I have very little energy or drive.

 

I do get more tired before my period but have not noticed a change in anhedonia.

 

How long was your longest window so far?


  • SSRIs 3-4 times in the last 14 years; would take them for 6-8 months and then taper off under dr supervision with no problems.
  • Med history prior to 2015: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6012-newbeginning-my-withdrawal-story/?p=267313#entry267313
  • 04/2015: Prozac decreased to 15mg over last 3 months; effexor held steady at 8mg; current effexor XR: 20 beads of a 75mg capsule per day (about 8mg)
  • 06/2015: Prozac: 10mg; effexor XR: 19 beads (about 7.5mg); 07/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor 18 beads; 08/2015: Prozac: 7.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • End of August: withdrawal: depressive symptoms, crying spells. Realized I was measuring prozac dose wrong for the last 2 months. Reinstated Prozac 8.5mg; Kept effexor at 17 beads. Stabilized in 5 weeks.
  • 10/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • 11/2015: Prozac: 1.9ml (7.5mg); effexor: 16 beads
  • 12/2015: Prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: 16 beads. Withdrawal: neuroemotions
  • 01/2016: prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: reinstated 17 beads, withdrawal improved; 02/2016: Prozac 1.5ml; Effexor: 17 beads; 03/2016: Prozac 1.3ml(5mg); Effexor: 17 beads (7mg)-withdrawal (flu-like malaise, lightheaded, drowsy) started end of March. April 15: reinstated Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized. 2 weeks ok. End of April: Withdrawal (neuroemotions). Eventually stabilized in April-May. Apathy improved.
  • 3 month hold until August. August 2016: apathy came back;

  • October 2016: updosed to Prozac 1.6ml. Bad reaction: anxiety, depression. End of October: went down Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized over several weeks.

  • Dec 9: tried macca for energy: anxiety/depression. Improved over several weeks, but not completely resolved.

  • Dec 31: cut Effexor 5% to 16 beads. After 9 days: withdrawal anxiety, depression; tried updosing to 17 beads Feb 7 but anxiety got worse; went down to 16 beads

    May 2017: Anxiety improved; severe depression continues

  • September 2017: finally stabilized!!!!!! 09/07/2017-12/31/2017: hold

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Newbeginning

i wrote a post on one site about apathy and i'd like to share it with you, what helped me a bit.

i still wasn't feeling, but i "felt" things like hope, motivation and similar.

right now, i don't feel either hope or hopelessness. i can talk about things for example, but i don't really mean what i'm saying, because nothing is based on what i'm really thinking.

 

so, here's what i wrote (i was writing about depression, so i changed some things):

 

 

 

 

How can I help you, how did I start feeling a bit, just a tiny bit better when it comes to not being able to feel ?

 

- trying to stop feeding my irrational thoughts, recognizing them and trying my hardest to change them into rational ones. Apathy doesn't magically go away when you start thinking a bit more rationally, but it can help you cope a lot and make you feel that there is hope. I don't say that it's easy, but if you have enough energy, even if you have that one special hour of the day where your syndrome isn't as strong as usual, then grab that moment and try to use it on some way that can benefit your mental health.

 

- engaging in activities that normal people do -- trying to take care of yourself, for example. Generally, imagining how would a normal person function like and trying your hardest to do it. This is the most focused on the outside, not on the inside. Of course, on the inside too, but I know that when you're suffering from this, you mentally won't be able to do much. But mental exercise can help, and no, I'm again saying, it's not easy.

 

- letting it go. And by this, I mean being in the moment, trying to experience things around you. That helped me feel even a tiny bit. Example: okay, here's a good song on the radio while I'm driving. I'll try to fake happiness, singing, and then I somehow feel some tiny, tiny, tiniest pleasure in doing that. "Fake it 'til you make it", right ? That's basically the only thing we can do at this kind of situation.

 

 

"faking it" can sometimes help to adapt to the normal world. asking yourself: how would a normal person react ? focusing on rational. trying, trying, trying. waiting.

 

In the past, pushing myself to do things even with 0 motivation helped me. As the apathy worsened over time, it does seem to help anymore.

 

When I had a window, pushing myself to do things helped again. It was not perfect. I still needed to push a lot, but at least the effort led to some improvement.


  • SSRIs 3-4 times in the last 14 years; would take them for 6-8 months and then taper off under dr supervision with no problems.
  • Med history prior to 2015: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6012-newbeginning-my-withdrawal-story/?p=267313#entry267313
  • 04/2015: Prozac decreased to 15mg over last 3 months; effexor held steady at 8mg; current effexor XR: 20 beads of a 75mg capsule per day (about 8mg)
  • 06/2015: Prozac: 10mg; effexor XR: 19 beads (about 7.5mg); 07/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor 18 beads; 08/2015: Prozac: 7.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • End of August: withdrawal: depressive symptoms, crying spells. Realized I was measuring prozac dose wrong for the last 2 months. Reinstated Prozac 8.5mg; Kept effexor at 17 beads. Stabilized in 5 weeks.
  • 10/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • 11/2015: Prozac: 1.9ml (7.5mg); effexor: 16 beads
  • 12/2015: Prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: 16 beads. Withdrawal: neuroemotions
  • 01/2016: prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: reinstated 17 beads, withdrawal improved; 02/2016: Prozac 1.5ml; Effexor: 17 beads; 03/2016: Prozac 1.3ml(5mg); Effexor: 17 beads (7mg)-withdrawal (flu-like malaise, lightheaded, drowsy) started end of March. April 15: reinstated Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized. 2 weeks ok. End of April: Withdrawal (neuroemotions). Eventually stabilized in April-May. Apathy improved.
  • 3 month hold until August. August 2016: apathy came back;

  • October 2016: updosed to Prozac 1.6ml. Bad reaction: anxiety, depression. End of October: went down Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized over several weeks.

  • Dec 9: tried macca for energy: anxiety/depression. Improved over several weeks, but not completely resolved.

  • Dec 31: cut Effexor 5% to 16 beads. After 9 days: withdrawal anxiety, depression; tried updosing to 17 beads Feb 7 but anxiety got worse; went down to 16 beads

    May 2017: Anxiety improved; severe depression continues

  • September 2017: finally stabilized!!!!!! 09/07/2017-12/31/2017: hold

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apathetic

 

In the past, pushing myself to do things even with 0 motivation helped me. As the apathy worsened over time, it does seem to help anymore.

When I had a window, pushing myself to do things helped again. It was not perfect. I still needed to push a lot, but at least the effort led to some improvement.

 

i agree. my apathy has worsened over time also. i was completely okay with either staying in the bed for 3 days, or walking non-stop for 3 days, it was all the same to me and i could do both, it just didn't matter, nothing mattered.

i think that i've had one window and you described it right, it definitely wasn't perfect and i doubt that it would be when the window comes, but i described the window as "having enough motivation/energy/anything else related to try to get better and see some small improvement". it's the worst when you just stop being interested in wanting to get better, that's very bad. or when you lose the sense of trying to get better. like, i try things, they make sense at the beginning, but then after a short period of time, couple of days or one week, they lose their sense and i'm back to the beginning. horrible cycle.

apathy has worsened (if we could call that apathy) for me when i just stopped caring about anything. i stopped caring about pushing myself, i stopped caring about getting better, i stopped caring about am i the hopeless case or not. i just lived, without any point in it, days were passing and i was doing nothing, or even if i was doing something, i didn't see the point of it. and it didn't bother me at all, i just continued "living".

before that state, i was so depressed, anxious and stressed in general that i would go into that state of just not caring about anything.
but here i am. i can just hope that it goes away.
i also stopped caring about the worsened memory, concentration, apathy, about anything that was concerning me so much that i felt so suicidal and hopeless. 

i'm not suicidal anymore.

sorry if you can't relate to this, it's just how i feel and i'm not sure if it's apathy. but it's something.


My withdrawal journey (click)

 

"If you're going through hell - keep going".

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Newbeginning

Hi Apathetic,

 

I can relate to what you describe. There were long periods of time where I didn't realize it but I had stopped caring about getting better. Every now and then I'd get angry about the lack of change, but I tried to just accept it because I realized worrying about it wouldn't help me. The good side of that is that I was not torturing myself about something I didn't know how to change. The bad side is that looking back I should have at least sought therapy. I was convinced if it was drug induced there was nothing I could do and that therapy wouldn't work, but that's not necessarily true. I now regret wasting the last 2 years instead of seeking help.

 

It all changed after I changed my dose last October. First updosing to try to get better from apathy after it returned after a long (3 month) window. In the past, updosing had gotten rid of withdrawal symptoms after a cut, so I thought it might help. Instead, it made me very depressed and anxious. All of a sudden I was tortured by the apathy. I also realized I had deadlines to get better because I was running out of money. I realized I would have to leave my PhD undone after completing 70% of it through withdrawal and apathy, which involved a lot of money and sacrifice. I'd have to lose my apartment, separate from my best friend who is like family to me and move back with my parents in a different country. I'd have to lose everything I worked hard for and dreamed in the last 10 years of my life.

 

Between the anxiety of withdrawal and the anxiety of this realization, I developed severe depression. I have not changed my dose in 5 months, but the depression is still there. Only now getting better and being replaced with even more severe apathy and fatigue. Unlike you, I don't think I could walk for 3 hours. That would take a lot of energy I don't have, so in my case it's a mix of no motivation and no energy to even move. 

 

I think many times I'd rather be dead than live like this or have to go through all the losses that are coming if I can't get better. I'm in therapy now. Have you tried therapy? When my family was visiting I was able to get a major part of my dissertation done in spite of the apathy. It was a miracle. To this day I have no idea how I did it, except that my family encouraged me so much and gave me so much love that I pushed myself harder. Maybe it was a window and I did not realize it was until they showed up and helped me realize I could do more. 

 

The point is that sometimes we can break through the apathy if we have the right support and help. I would seek therapy if I was you. I'm in an intensive therapy program now. 6 hours of group therapy a week plus individual therapy. It's been 2 weeks and no improvement yet, but I'm not giving up.


  • SSRIs 3-4 times in the last 14 years; would take them for 6-8 months and then taper off under dr supervision with no problems.
  • Med history prior to 2015: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6012-newbeginning-my-withdrawal-story/?p=267313#entry267313
  • 04/2015: Prozac decreased to 15mg over last 3 months; effexor held steady at 8mg; current effexor XR: 20 beads of a 75mg capsule per day (about 8mg)
  • 06/2015: Prozac: 10mg; effexor XR: 19 beads (about 7.5mg); 07/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor 18 beads; 08/2015: Prozac: 7.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • End of August: withdrawal: depressive symptoms, crying spells. Realized I was measuring prozac dose wrong for the last 2 months. Reinstated Prozac 8.5mg; Kept effexor at 17 beads. Stabilized in 5 weeks.
  • 10/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • 11/2015: Prozac: 1.9ml (7.5mg); effexor: 16 beads
  • 12/2015: Prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: 16 beads. Withdrawal: neuroemotions
  • 01/2016: prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: reinstated 17 beads, withdrawal improved; 02/2016: Prozac 1.5ml; Effexor: 17 beads; 03/2016: Prozac 1.3ml(5mg); Effexor: 17 beads (7mg)-withdrawal (flu-like malaise, lightheaded, drowsy) started end of March. April 15: reinstated Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized. 2 weeks ok. End of April: Withdrawal (neuroemotions). Eventually stabilized in April-May. Apathy improved.
  • 3 month hold until August. August 2016: apathy came back;

  • October 2016: updosed to Prozac 1.6ml. Bad reaction: anxiety, depression. End of October: went down Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized over several weeks.

  • Dec 9: tried macca for energy: anxiety/depression. Improved over several weeks, but not completely resolved.

  • Dec 31: cut Effexor 5% to 16 beads. After 9 days: withdrawal anxiety, depression; tried updosing to 17 beads Feb 7 but anxiety got worse; went down to 16 beads

    May 2017: Anxiety improved; severe depression continues

  • September 2017: finally stabilized!!!!!! 09/07/2017-12/31/2017: hold

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aberdeen

Hey newbeginning. I would say I get a window a month now, and its a day or two, and like clockwork, its around when I ovulate. Whatever it is the hormones do to my brain at that time, it works. I feel more interested in things, more connected to "me" (feelings for my favorite songs, wanting to read or be creative, feeling emotions for my loved ones more strongly). I totally get the motivation thing. I almost always feel like I could kill a whole day doing nothing besides what I absoultely have no choice but to tackle (work, household, children, and they all feel like wayyyy too much). Then when the window arrives, its much easier, I actually feel a slight desire to attack my to do lists rather than think "whatever who cares".


2 Timothy 1-7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Effexor 75mg to 262.5mg 2005-2010 for post partum depression

Started having poop out mid 2010, also switched generic brands, then crashed in Dec 2010 (anxiety/ "terror", intense DR, anhedonia, suicidal ideation, chills, insomnia, horrible intrusive thoughts, disorientation, ect)
Rapid "tapered" from 262.5mg Effexor in 3 months

Tried Celexa,Cipralex, then Paxil to deal with wd(this switching made things worse and added akathesia)

Found online support and started tapering Paxil 7 months after quitting Effexor (at this point was having small windows).

Paxil taper: dropped 10% every 4-8 weeks

Year 1 October 2011 to Nov 2012 20mg to 10mg

Year 2 March 2013 to Feb 2014 10mg to 4mg

Year 3 April 2014 to May 2015 4mg to 1.1mg

Year 4 June 2015 1.1mg , dropping by 10% until .5mg, after then dropped by 0.1mg every 5 weeks until 0.1mg.

Finished! Official last dose of 0.1mg on June 15/16

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nicolantana

Very well put Aberdeen. I experience the very same


late July...lexapro 10 seroquel 25.....due to mild depression......adverse reaction, suicidal thoughts, hospitalization

August....felt that meds were ripping stomach apart....docs didn't believe me..upped meds to seroquel 125, lexapro 20, mirtazapine 30, olanzapine 20....stayed on these drugs unitl mid november......severe anhedonia all the time...mid novemeber 2016 , began taper.....very small windows of emotion...Christmas....off everything by Christmas day......last six weeks, cried and laughed on a number of occasions for first time since taking initial meds....8 occasions of strong emotion over 6 weeks in ealry 2016.......doubting recovery......

BIG WINDOW IN july 2017, felt incredible, lasted a month or so, felt close to recovered...window left, september to Chrimstas 17 was anhedonic hell.....Turn of the year, January 2018, some very strong days (a window) offering renewed hope

back to hell until late February 2018, strong 10 day window....followed by anhedonic wave for 7 months straight! not a flicker of normalcy

September 2018 ...incredible window...followed by three month wave.January 2019.... a strong window

window subsided, but new baseline was higher.....life since January 2019 ( 9 months and counting) has been far better. Complete anhedonia is gone!! God, I've tears writing that. I am far from recovered, but far from hell...to use a scale, if life is rated out of a hundred, I was about minus 50 for the majority of 2 years..I know feel about 30 per cent of self, experiences intermittent flickers of normal life regularly....My days have more quality and I am optimistic of recovery. 

 

 

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apathetic

newbeginning,

yes, i am in therapy and my doctor figured out that i'm suffering from withdrawal and knows exactly what to do. our therapy goal, the main one, is to survive, and then when i'm able to survive, to try to ease the symptoms that are changing their shape almost every week.

therapy is helpful for depression, but there's that one thing that is hard to catch inside of you - will to get better. i know that, sometimes i can't even begin with the activity, or when i begin, i can't finish it because of the symptoms that are bothering me, and the main one is lack of motivation to stay focused on the goal. i don't know if you have that problem, but i think that sticking to one thing can benefit us, but the question is - how ?

i don't know what symptom that is, but from my point of view, it somehow looks like lack of motivation, the thing that i just described. that was/is my main problem with therapy in general. i suffer more from lack of mental motivation more than physical. that has been, i guess, my problem for the past month.

i'm glad that you're not giving up. i promised myself that i won't give up either. that's why i'm searching for every method possible to get rid of this.
today, for example, is a bit better. i cleaned my house. my cognition and motivation are better. i'm planning to do as much as i can when i'm still good. this "still" makes me feel sad. still not giving up, anyways.

and that about apathy... gives me hope. thank you. so much. it feels like it's going to be like this forever for most of the time and sometimes, i feel silly for feeling like there is hope. but that can pass, also. 

everything will, i guess. if it happened to others, it can happen to us too.
i also know one person in real life who recovered from withdrawal and now feels, even more than she should haha, but there is a way to control emotions and there isn't any way to get rid of the apathy, except patience and waiting.


My withdrawal journey (click)

 

"If you're going through hell - keep going".

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aberdeen

There is always hope! Newbeginning yes I still maintain that in terms of healing from my collection of wd symptoms, I have noticed a big improvement since coming off last June. Most notable with DR, depression, and general anxiety/adrenaline surges. I have had a reprieve now of months, and that is a record by far. While tapering I would have a few weeks of windows from those symptoms and thats it, even at the end, by which point my symptoms were tolerable and mild compared to where I started, they still never stayed away as long as they do now. Also, just wanted to explain, when I said I get a window a month, and its a day or two (up above in response to your other post here), I was referring specifically to how long my windows from anhedonia are. As I said, my windows in general (from other wd symtoms) are very long now!


2 Timothy 1-7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Effexor 75mg to 262.5mg 2005-2010 for post partum depression

Started having poop out mid 2010, also switched generic brands, then crashed in Dec 2010 (anxiety/ "terror", intense DR, anhedonia, suicidal ideation, chills, insomnia, horrible intrusive thoughts, disorientation, ect)
Rapid "tapered" from 262.5mg Effexor in 3 months

Tried Celexa,Cipralex, then Paxil to deal with wd(this switching made things worse and added akathesia)

Found online support and started tapering Paxil 7 months after quitting Effexor (at this point was having small windows).

Paxil taper: dropped 10% every 4-8 weeks

Year 1 October 2011 to Nov 2012 20mg to 10mg

Year 2 March 2013 to Feb 2014 10mg to 4mg

Year 3 April 2014 to May 2015 4mg to 1.1mg

Year 4 June 2015 1.1mg , dropping by 10% until .5mg, after then dropped by 0.1mg every 5 weeks until 0.1mg.

Finished! Official last dose of 0.1mg on June 15/16

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nicolantana

hey....anyone else have unnatural eyes? I'm clean six months but still glassy eyed....


late July...lexapro 10 seroquel 25.....due to mild depression......adverse reaction, suicidal thoughts, hospitalization

August....felt that meds were ripping stomach apart....docs didn't believe me..upped meds to seroquel 125, lexapro 20, mirtazapine 30, olanzapine 20....stayed on these drugs unitl mid november......severe anhedonia all the time...mid novemeber 2016 , began taper.....very small windows of emotion...Christmas....off everything by Christmas day......last six weeks, cried and laughed on a number of occasions for first time since taking initial meds....8 occasions of strong emotion over 6 weeks in ealry 2016.......doubting recovery......

BIG WINDOW IN july 2017, felt incredible, lasted a month or so, felt close to recovered...window left, september to Chrimstas 17 was anhedonic hell.....Turn of the year, January 2018, some very strong days (a window) offering renewed hope

back to hell until late February 2018, strong 10 day window....followed by anhedonic wave for 7 months straight! not a flicker of normalcy

September 2018 ...incredible window...followed by three month wave.January 2019.... a strong window

window subsided, but new baseline was higher.....life since January 2019 ( 9 months and counting) has been far better. Complete anhedonia is gone!! God, I've tears writing that. I am far from recovered, but far from hell...to use a scale, if life is rated out of a hundred, I was about minus 50 for the majority of 2 years..I know feel about 30 per cent of self, experiences intermittent flickers of normal life regularly....My days have more quality and I am optimistic of recovery. 

 

 

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brassmonkey

Monica (DW) could always tell when I was having WD problems because of my "paxil eyes".  Still get them from time to time.


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

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

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

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

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nicolantana

interesting. it's not something that I hear discussed much but I guess it's par for the course. in my few little windows my eyes were clearer too.


late July...lexapro 10 seroquel 25.....due to mild depression......adverse reaction, suicidal thoughts, hospitalization

August....felt that meds were ripping stomach apart....docs didn't believe me..upped meds to seroquel 125, lexapro 20, mirtazapine 30, olanzapine 20....stayed on these drugs unitl mid november......severe anhedonia all the time...mid novemeber 2016 , began taper.....very small windows of emotion...Christmas....off everything by Christmas day......last six weeks, cried and laughed on a number of occasions for first time since taking initial meds....8 occasions of strong emotion over 6 weeks in ealry 2016.......doubting recovery......

BIG WINDOW IN july 2017, felt incredible, lasted a month or so, felt close to recovered...window left, september to Chrimstas 17 was anhedonic hell.....Turn of the year, January 2018, some very strong days (a window) offering renewed hope

back to hell until late February 2018, strong 10 day window....followed by anhedonic wave for 7 months straight! not a flicker of normalcy

September 2018 ...incredible window...followed by three month wave.January 2019.... a strong window

window subsided, but new baseline was higher.....life since January 2019 ( 9 months and counting) has been far better. Complete anhedonia is gone!! God, I've tears writing that. I am far from recovered, but far from hell...to use a scale, if life is rated out of a hundred, I was about minus 50 for the majority of 2 years..I know feel about 30 per cent of self, experiences intermittent flickers of normal life regularly....My days have more quality and I am optimistic of recovery. 

 

 

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apathetic

I've dreamed about someone who I really love dying. It was all really touching in a depressed way in the dream (I don't know the word). The thing is, when I woke up, even though the person means a lot to me, I couldn't feel a thing. I tried, but I couldn't. Then I gave up, like I usually give up, because I don't care enough to continue doing anything, and it's not even bothering me. Then I started behaving like nothing happened.

 

A normal person would cry. At least feel bad if he/she can't cry. I didn't even feel bad. And I don't feel anything because of that.

 

This has worsened, in April I would feel so bad because I couldn't feel, which is still something.

 

I guess that this is how emotional anesthesia feels like.

 

Did anyone overcome this type of emotional anesthesia/apathy ? Does it get better ?
I'm still using medications, so it's understandable why, but I don't know. Seems like I'm completely emotionally dead.


My withdrawal journey (click)

 

"If you're going through hell - keep going".

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Newbeginning
On 6/19/2017 at 1:27 AM, apathetic said:

I've dreamed about someone who I really love dying. It was all really touching in a depressed way in the dream (I don't know the word). The thing is, when I woke up, even though the person means a lot to me, I couldn't feel a thing. I tried, but I couldn't. Then I gave up, like I usually give up, because I don't care enough to continue doing anything, and it's not even bothering me. Then I started behaving like nothing happened.

 

A normal person would cry. At least feel bad if he/she can't cry. I didn't even feel bad. And I don't feel anything because of that.

 

This has worsened, in April I would feel so bad because I couldn't feel, which is still something.

 

I guess that this is how emotional anesthesia feels like.

 

Did anyone overcome this type of emotional anesthesia/apathy ? Does it get better ?
I'm still using medications, so it's understandable why, but I don't know. Seems like I'm completely emotionally dead.

 

I've heard of people who got better after a time off the drugs. I think not judging yourself for not feeling is helpful. The more we stress about the symptoms, the longer they seem to last...


  • SSRIs 3-4 times in the last 14 years; would take them for 6-8 months and then taper off under dr supervision with no problems.
  • Med history prior to 2015: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6012-newbeginning-my-withdrawal-story/?p=267313#entry267313
  • 04/2015: Prozac decreased to 15mg over last 3 months; effexor held steady at 8mg; current effexor XR: 20 beads of a 75mg capsule per day (about 8mg)
  • 06/2015: Prozac: 10mg; effexor XR: 19 beads (about 7.5mg); 07/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor 18 beads; 08/2015: Prozac: 7.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • End of August: withdrawal: depressive symptoms, crying spells. Realized I was measuring prozac dose wrong for the last 2 months. Reinstated Prozac 8.5mg; Kept effexor at 17 beads. Stabilized in 5 weeks.
  • 10/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • 11/2015: Prozac: 1.9ml (7.5mg); effexor: 16 beads
  • 12/2015: Prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: 16 beads. Withdrawal: neuroemotions
  • 01/2016: prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: reinstated 17 beads, withdrawal improved; 02/2016: Prozac 1.5ml; Effexor: 17 beads; 03/2016: Prozac 1.3ml(5mg); Effexor: 17 beads (7mg)-withdrawal (flu-like malaise, lightheaded, drowsy) started end of March. April 15: reinstated Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized. 2 weeks ok. End of April: Withdrawal (neuroemotions). Eventually stabilized in April-May. Apathy improved.
  • 3 month hold until August. August 2016: apathy came back;

  • October 2016: updosed to Prozac 1.6ml. Bad reaction: anxiety, depression. End of October: went down Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized over several weeks.

  • Dec 9: tried macca for energy: anxiety/depression. Improved over several weeks, but not completely resolved.

  • Dec 31: cut Effexor 5% to 16 beads. After 9 days: withdrawal anxiety, depression; tried updosing to 17 beads Feb 7 but anxiety got worse; went down to 16 beads

    May 2017: Anxiety improved; severe depression continues

  • September 2017: finally stabilized!!!!!! 09/07/2017-12/31/2017: hold

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Newbeginning
On 5/23/2017 at 10:57 AM, aberdeen said:

There is always hope! Newbeginning yes I still maintain that in terms of healing from my collection of wd symptoms, I have noticed a big improvement since coming off last June. Most notable with DR, depression, and general anxiety/adrenaline surges. I have had a reprieve now of months, and that is a record by far. While tapering I would have a few weeks of windows from those symptoms and thats it, even at the end, by which point my symptoms were tolerable and mild compared to where I started, they still never stayed away as long as they do now. Also, just wanted to explain, when I said I get a window a month, and its a day or two (up above in response to your other post here), I was referring specifically to how long my windows from anhedonia are. As I said, my windows in general (from other wd symtoms) are very long now!

 

That's so great to hear Aberdeen (about your long windows)! But I'm discouraged that your windows from the anhedonia are still so brief  after a year off. Your anhedonia seems less severe than mine because I could not push myself to work or do basics right now. I used to be able to, but 3 years ago that changed. 

 

From your signature, it seems your anhedonia could be more withdrawal than a side effect. It showed up during the change to generic and appeared along with a lot of other typical withdrawal symptoms. I also remember you noted it didn't get better as you decreased dose. 

 

What is the longest window you had in anhedonia?

 

 


  • SSRIs 3-4 times in the last 14 years; would take them for 6-8 months and then taper off under dr supervision with no problems.
  • Med history prior to 2015: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6012-newbeginning-my-withdrawal-story/?p=267313#entry267313
  • 04/2015: Prozac decreased to 15mg over last 3 months; effexor held steady at 8mg; current effexor XR: 20 beads of a 75mg capsule per day (about 8mg)
  • 06/2015: Prozac: 10mg; effexor XR: 19 beads (about 7.5mg); 07/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor 18 beads; 08/2015: Prozac: 7.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • End of August: withdrawal: depressive symptoms, crying spells. Realized I was measuring prozac dose wrong for the last 2 months. Reinstated Prozac 8.5mg; Kept effexor at 17 beads. Stabilized in 5 weeks.
  • 10/2015: Prozac: 8.5mg; effexor: 17 beads
  • 11/2015: Prozac: 1.9ml (7.5mg); effexor: 16 beads
  • 12/2015: Prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: 16 beads. Withdrawal: neuroemotions
  • 01/2016: prozac: 1.6ml; effexor xr: reinstated 17 beads, withdrawal improved; 02/2016: Prozac 1.5ml; Effexor: 17 beads; 03/2016: Prozac 1.3ml(5mg); Effexor: 17 beads (7mg)-withdrawal (flu-like malaise, lightheaded, drowsy) started end of March. April 15: reinstated Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized. 2 weeks ok. End of April: Withdrawal (neuroemotions). Eventually stabilized in April-May. Apathy improved.
  • 3 month hold until August. August 2016: apathy came back;

  • October 2016: updosed to Prozac 1.6ml. Bad reaction: anxiety, depression. End of October: went down Prozac 1.5ml. Stabilized over several weeks.

  • Dec 9: tried macca for energy: anxiety/depression. Improved over several weeks, but not completely resolved.

  • Dec 31: cut Effexor 5% to 16 beads. After 9 days: withdrawal anxiety, depression; tried updosing to 17 beads Feb 7 but anxiety got worse; went down to 16 beads

    May 2017: Anxiety improved; severe depression continues

  • September 2017: finally stabilized!!!!!! 09/07/2017-12/31/2017: hold

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nicolantana

Guys I emerged from Anhedonia overnight last week. life gets better everyday. it's one of the most amazing experiences of my life if it lasts.

 

I'm staying grounded though. should I be wary? do people emerge from this and feel good emotions for a time before feeling bad ones?

 

I'll enjoy it for now either way.

 

I was very happy/ two years ago...maybe I'm just back to that default setting...


late July...lexapro 10 seroquel 25.....due to mild depression......adverse reaction, suicidal thoughts, hospitalization

August....felt that meds were ripping stomach apart....docs didn't believe me..upped meds to seroquel 125, lexapro 20, mirtazapine 30, olanzapine 20....stayed on these drugs unitl mid november......severe anhedonia all the time...mid novemeber 2016 , began taper.....very small windows of emotion...Christmas....off everything by Christmas day......last six weeks, cried and laughed on a number of occasions for first time since taking initial meds....8 occasions of strong emotion over 6 weeks in ealry 2016.......doubting recovery......

BIG WINDOW IN july 2017, felt incredible, lasted a month or so, felt close to recovered...window left, september to Chrimstas 17 was anhedonic hell.....Turn of the year, January 2018, some very strong days (a window) offering renewed hope

back to hell until late February 2018, strong 10 day window....followed by anhedonic wave for 7 months straight! not a flicker of normalcy

September 2018 ...incredible window...followed by three month wave.January 2019.... a strong window

window subsided, but new baseline was higher.....life since January 2019 ( 9 months and counting) has been far better. Complete anhedonia is gone!! God, I've tears writing that. I am far from recovered, but far from hell...to use a scale, if life is rated out of a hundred, I was about minus 50 for the majority of 2 years..I know feel about 30 per cent of self, experiences intermittent flickers of normal life regularly....My days have more quality and I am optimistic of recovery. 

 

 

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aberdeen

Thats great!! Yes I have heard of people getting better fast like this actually, or gradual also. Go with it! Its such a great sign. I too have been feeling better. To answer your question Newbeginning, I just had my longest anhedonia window recently and it was a few weeks! I had more emotional connections, got teary over things in a happy/sad way, saw ideas for creative solutions or artistic projects/home improvements/things to do with the kids and even felt like making new recipes and playing again, along with an increased motivation to tackle it all. It lasted longer than usual. I can now officially say that a year off is making a difference even in that most stubborn of areas. I havent felt great for the last week but it began with my period so I blame hormones. Hang in there, look to us who are finally having improvements, it does get better! 


2 Timothy 1-7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Effexor 75mg to 262.5mg 2005-2010 for post partum depression

Started having poop out mid 2010, also switched generic brands, then crashed in Dec 2010 (anxiety/ "terror", intense DR, anhedonia, suicidal ideation, chills, insomnia, horrible intrusive thoughts, disorientation, ect)
Rapid "tapered" from 262.5mg Effexor in 3 months

Tried Celexa,Cipralex, then Paxil to deal with wd(this switching made things worse and added akathesia)

Found online support and started tapering Paxil 7 months after quitting Effexor (at this point was having small windows).

Paxil taper: dropped 10% every 4-8 weeks

Year 1 October 2011 to Nov 2012 20mg to 10mg

Year 2 March 2013 to Feb 2014 10mg to 4mg

Year 3 April 2014 to May 2015 4mg to 1.1mg

Year 4 June 2015 1.1mg , dropping by 10% until .5mg, after then dropped by 0.1mg every 5 weeks until 0.1mg.

Finished! Official last dose of 0.1mg on June 15/16

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Prestorb

This is awesome news and very encouraging, thanks so much for sharing!!!


2005-2009, Lexapro 10 - 20 mg, CT WD w/severe depression and anxiety:  2010-2015, Paxil, 30 - 40 mg, tapered off at 10 mg/week, moderate anxiety and depression:  2010-2015, Clonozapam 0.25 mg, as needed for anxiety and sleep:  1/10/2015, Zoloft 25 mg, tried to increase to 50 and 75, but nausea and dizziness:  2/13/2015, Paxil 5 mg, added back after 2 weeks at zero to reduce WD:  2/28/2015, Paxil 10 mg, increased from 5 mg to reduce WD, HOLDING:  3/04/2015, Zoloft discontinued (reduced to ~12.5 mg on 2/19, ~6.25 mg on 2/26, then zero):  4/26/2015, Paxil starting 10% taper (no scale so was inadvertently at 20% taper, yikes!):  4/30/2015, Paxil 10 mg, reinstated (WD disappeared between August 2015 and May 2016)

5/02/2016, Started 10% taper, reinstated to 10 mg on 5/11/16:  4/29/2017, Last dose of Paxil (working with holistic psychiatrist, lots of supplements to aid WD):  Primary symptoms: apathy, demotivation, anhedonia, fatigue, stress intolerance, moderate social anxiety

7/1/2018 Finally feeling like myself again, success!!! Praise God! Even with the stress of relocating recently, I am feeling pretty good most of the time now. Granted, I eat healthy, I exercise, I don't drink caffeine or alcohol and I try hard find a healthy balance of quiet and social times. Hang in there and keep the faith, you can do it too!

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Hellbutrin

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!


  1. Started Wellbutrin 75 mg IR the end of 2015.
  2. Tried quitting cold turkey in June 30th- July 3rd 2017.
  3. Had severe withdrawals.
  4. Was placed on Wellbutrin 100mg SR so I could taper without withdrawal.
  5. Stabilized on 100mg SR for most of the month of July.
  6. Started tapering on July 17th,  2017.
  7. Completed taper on August 8th, 2017.
  8. Currently experiencing severe withdrawal.
  • Symptoms- Currently experiencing anhedonia, depersonalization/derealization, concentration/memory issues, chronic congestion, chronic dry eyes, dry skin, dislocated TMJ joint from teeth grinding during C/T withdrawal, waves of depression, anxiety, nausea, morning cortisol spikes, insomnia, agitation, food sensitivities, no tolerance for caffeine and chronic fatigue, burning muscle pain in upper and lower back and occasional tinninitus.
  • Supplements- Omega-3 fish oil supplement twice daily, 100 mg of magnesium once daily. 

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theloneranger86

its been over a year for me now. Im still experiencing full blown anhedonia , pssd and abnormal urinary function

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Hellbutrin
1 hour ago, theloneranger86 said:

its been over a year for me now. Im still experiencing full blown anhedonia , pssd and abnormal urinary function

Hi theloneranger86,

 

What kind of medication were you taking and for how long? I think that the severity of withdrawal is dependent on the type of medication you are taking and how long you are taking it. Have you experienced any windows and waves during the time that you have had anhedonia, passed and abnormal urinary function?


  1. Started Wellbutrin 75 mg IR the end of 2015.
  2. Tried quitting cold turkey in June 30th- July 3rd 2017.
  3. Had severe withdrawals.
  4. Was placed on Wellbutrin 100mg SR so I could taper without withdrawal.
  5. Stabilized on 100mg SR for most of the month of July.
  6. Started tapering on July 17th,  2017.
  7. Completed taper on August 8th, 2017.
  8. Currently experiencing severe withdrawal.
  • Symptoms- Currently experiencing anhedonia, depersonalization/derealization, concentration/memory issues, chronic congestion, chronic dry eyes, dry skin, dislocated TMJ joint from teeth grinding during C/T withdrawal, waves of depression, anxiety, nausea, morning cortisol spikes, insomnia, agitation, food sensitivities, no tolerance for caffeine and chronic fatigue, burning muscle pain in upper and lower back and occasional tinninitus.
  • Supplements- Omega-3 fish oil supplement twice daily, 100 mg of magnesium once daily. 

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theloneranger86

yes i have experience windows in all 3 aspects, but i wasnt anywhere close to normal during any of those windows, just somewhat better 

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Hellbutrin
On 8/28/2017 at 4:20 PM, theloneranger86 said:

yes i have experience windows in all 3 aspects, but i wasnt anywhere close to normal during any of those windows, just somewhat better 

Were you taking a high dosage of whatever medication you were using?


  1. Started Wellbutrin 75 mg IR the end of 2015.
  2. Tried quitting cold turkey in June 30th- July 3rd 2017.
  3. Had severe withdrawals.
  4. Was placed on Wellbutrin 100mg SR so I could taper without withdrawal.
  5. Stabilized on 100mg SR for most of the month of July.
  6. Started tapering on July 17th,  2017.
  7. Completed taper on August 8th, 2017.
  8. Currently experiencing severe withdrawal.
  • Symptoms- Currently experiencing anhedonia, depersonalization/derealization, concentration/memory issues, chronic congestion, chronic dry eyes, dry skin, dislocated TMJ joint from teeth grinding during C/T withdrawal, waves of depression, anxiety, nausea, morning cortisol spikes, insomnia, agitation, food sensitivities, no tolerance for caffeine and chronic fatigue, burning muscle pain in upper and lower back and occasional tinninitus.
  • Supplements- Omega-3 fish oil supplement twice daily, 100 mg of magnesium once daily. 

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theloneranger86

yes extremely high dose of paroxetine / paxil @ 37.5 mg I think 45/ 50 mg is the highest possible dose that someone can recommend

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Jenniferdiana

I can't cry...why can't I cry...the last time I cried was last week...i can't force myself to cry..what is this? Has anyone ever experience this?


Lexapro 20 mg /started March 2012 discontinued Jan. 2017/ tapered 10 mg for 3 days then stopped cold turkey.               ------  started invega sustenna March 2012 156 mg every  4 weeks

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brassmonkey

It's the WDs playing games with your emotions Jen.  In a few weeks you probably won't be able to stop crying.  It's a variation on the window/wave pattern.  I had several stretches of several months where I couldn't cry.  Each followed by several months where I'd cry at the drop of a hat. Very challenging in the work environment.


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

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

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

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

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JS11
11 hours ago, brassmonkey said:

It's the WDs playing games with your emotions Jen.  In a few weeks you probably won't be able to stop crying.  It's a variation on the window/wave pattern.  I had several stretches of several months where I couldn't cry.  Each followed by several months where I'd cry at the drop of a hat. Very challenging in the work environment.

Hi Jenniferdiana, 

Thank you for the information Brassmonkey.

and Welcome to SA.  Jennieferdiana.  

take care,

JS


26 years of Anti-depressants (probably 32, lost track, alone and/in combination Vyvanse 30mg Discontinued Feb. 22, 2013 Topamax  25-75mg Feb 23, 2013--Feb 2016 0.0 mg Discontinued  Lamotrigine 25-50mg Jan 15, 2016-Adverse Reaction Discontinued Feb 2, 2016 T3 25-50mcg Feb.11, 2016  Discontinued April 23, 2016

Escitalopram 20mg-omg fast taper Nov. 2015-Jan.7, 2016 Crash! Reinstated 20mg  Taper Jan 14, 2016  0.0mg Sept 2016 Reinstated Feb.21, 2017 Escitalopram  5mg Dosage Adjustments  Escitalopram to 2.5mg June 28-30; Increased to 3.75mg July 1-28, 2017    July 29-Aug 4 10mg, alternated between 5 and 10mg next couple days.  Aug 9, 7.25mg;  Aug 10-14 10mg; Aug 15-25 7.25mg, August 25-29, 10mg.   

Levofloxacin (January 2017 2 doses) (Adverse Reaction: Neurotoxcity; 3 daysE.R.$30k+tests)

Adderall 25mgXR (start April 23, 2013) (Nov.2016 20mg) (Dec.2016 15mg) (Feb. 5, 2016 10mg) (June 15, 2017) 5mg XR 

Crossover July 7 to Adderall I.M 5mg Discontinued  Reinstated Adderall 5mgXR  July 28th 

Minipress 1mg began July 20-23, 2mg July 24 last dose Discontinued  (Prescribed to assist with side-effects of updose of Escitalopram) WellbutrinXR 150 mg July 24, 2017 Discontinued;  Hydroxyline 25-200 mg daily, began July 20, Discontnued; (Prescribed for side-effects-sensitized; W/D)Gababentin 100mg August 28, 8/29: 00mg, 8/30/17 100mg discontinued (Prescribed for side-effects of sensitized, W//D)Zolipidem PRN (2.5mg.) Reinstated May 15, 2017 after18m+ discontinuation Between May and  Aug18-Aug 30, 2017 Discontinued

 

Aug. 30. 2017 Escitalopram 8.2mg, Sept. 6 Ecitalopram (7.25 tablet) September 28 Escitalopram   (7 mg tablet)   Omega 3's , October 1 Escitalopram (6.25...I think)  November 1, Escitalopram (approx. 5.75mg) December 1 (5mg)  Missed .75 for few days, lowered dose.  W/D ramped up Dec.23;  Escitalopram 4mg tab. .75ml liquid March 5.  Adderall XR 5mg, Synthroid 112mcg  March 23 Escitalopram 4mg tab .50ml liquid.April 23 Escotalopram 4mgtab .25ml liquid Escitalopram dropping .25 every 30 days;July 23, 2018 Escitalopram 3.50mg, Adderall XR 5mg, Synthroid 112mcg 

Current:  Escitalopram .35mg

Synthroid/Generic 100mcg decreased November.  (TSH has changed 4 times since August 30, 2018 resulting in both Hyper and hypothyroid symptoms.)  November 1, 2018, increased Adderall XR to 10mg to combat brain fog.

 

 

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brassmonkey

I recently posted this on several other threads, when it was suggested that I also post it here.  Anhedonia, or more correctly in the case of ADWD Emotional Blunting is a symptom that causes a large number of people a considerable amount of grief.  It doesn't have to be that way.

 

"When it comes to WD, anhedonia is natures way of protecting us from the excruciating experience of constant panic attacks, nonstop anxiety, adrenaline rushes, cortisol spikes, palpitations, suicidal ideation, intrusive thoughts and the like.  Your mind decides that it is better to feel nothing at all than to be put through the ringer 24/7 with emotions and sensations that wrack the body and soul, and the slow healing/recover process to a snails pace.  When the mind is allowed to feel nothing the body is then allowed to relax and direct it's energy to where it really needs to be used. This allows for faster more complete healing, less painful WD symptoms and a better quality of life.

 

Yes, anhedonia is no fun.  Primarily because we make it that way.  We all want to regain our feelings as fast as possible.  But we are in a healing situation where the body needs to be allowed to do what it needs to do, because it knows best how to put itself back together.  Once we understand this, accept it and stop fighting it we will start to heal at a faster rate and life will be much more pleasant as we do so.  Given a lifetime, the time spent in ADWD/recovery is insignificant.  We have all had our "life" cruelly taken from us and want it back now.  But to get it back fully we need to let the WD/recovery run its course, put on a brave face and accept what ever it throws at us, whether we can feel it or not.  With time, the healing will happen and when it knows we are ready our minds will allow us to feel our full range of emotions again and life will be even better."


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

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

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

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

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emmabee
On 9/16/2017 at 1:33 AM, brassmonkey said:

I recently posted this on several other threads, when it was suggested that I also post it here.  Anhedonia, or more correctly in the case of ADWD Emotional Blunting is a symptom that causes a large number of people a considerable amount of grief.  It doesn't have to be that way.

 

"When it comes to WD, anhedonia is natures way of protecting us from the excruciating experience of constant panic attacks, nonstop anxiety, adrenaline rushes, cortisol spikes, palpitations, suicidal ideation, intrusive thoughts and the like.  Your mind decides that it is better to feel nothing at all than to be put through the ringer 24/7 with emotions and sensations that wrack the body and soul, and the slow healing/recover process to a snails pace.  When the mind is allowed to feel nothing the body is then allowed to relax and direct it's energy to where it really needs to be used. This allows for faster more complete healing, less painful WD symptoms and a better quality of life.

 

Yes, anhedonia is no fun.  Primarily because we make it that way.  We all want to regain our feelings as fast as possible.  But we are in a healing situation where the body needs to be allowed to do what it needs to do, because it knows best how to put itself back together.  Once we understand this, accept it and stop fighting it we will start to heal at a faster rate and life will be much more pleasant as we do so.  Given a lifetime, the time spent in ADWD/recovery is insignificant.  We have all had our "life" cruelly taken from us and want it back now.  But to get it back fully we need to let the WD/recovery run its course, put on a brave face and accept what ever it throws at us, whether we can feel it or not.  With time, the healing will happen and when it knows we are ready our minds will allow us to feel our full range of emotions again and life will be even better."

This makes so much sense. I've been mostly anhedonic for about 5 years.  It's part of what led me to the decision to stop meds. 

Since WD, the anhedonia feels worse, but it's not constant.  I have periods of deep depression, high anxiety, and increasingly, windows of almost normalcy.  Maybe not normalcy, but brief periods ranging from hours to days where I start to feel like "I can..." 

Then back to anhedonic.  

 

I've been trying to read through most of this thread, and pages back someone talked about "paralysis of the will".  Yup.  I relate to that so much.

But looking at it as a rest period for my out of balance body and brain....makes me feel better.  

 

I know this is going to be a long journey, and have to remember that I need to stop fighting it and just let it happen in it's own time.  

 


Between 1988 and 2003 was on many different meds including Tricyclics, MAOIs, SSRIs, SSNRIs, and mood stabilizers, some helped but not for long.

2003 went off MAOIs and started taking Effexor XR at 450 mg.  

2012 added buspar to augment the Effexor (cannot recall exact dose) stayed on a few months with little effect.

2013 added Ritalin to augment the Effexor, no noticeable benefits so dropped that too.

2014 lowered dose of Effexor to 300mg and started adding Viibrid with negative effects so dropped Viibrid and went back to 450 of Effexor XR.

2015 added 2 mg Abilify to augment the Effexor, slight benefit at first but no lasting effects.

March 2016 tapered off Abilify in about 2 weeks.

April 2016 began to taper off Effexor XR, from 450 to 0 in about 8 weeks total. Somewhere around 37.5 had a serotonin syndrome episode and had to raise dose again for about a week until I started dropping again.  Now i know the entire taper was way too fast.  

May 2016 started taking Lexapro, increased from 5 mg to 10 mg within 10 days.

Tapered off Lexapro starting in September of 2016, dropping at various rates...quicker drops at first, then slowing down to .5 mg drops every 3 weeks or so.  Took last dose on 2/8/17.

 

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Offforgood

I think my anhedonia which I have had for the last few years while on meds.. Zoloft 200 mg, olanzipine 5mg and effexor X-rays 450 mg and continue unchanged since I stopped taking all meds in July... I guess I was taken off Zoloft and olanzipine too fast Zoloft in a month taper and olanzipine in a few days.. on psychiatric advice..did I thought slow taper of effexor X-rays over 6 months 50% decrease each month..now am experiencing withdrawals two months later but predominant lack of motivation still persists.  

I think this anhedonia is a result of taking antidepressants for 28 years.. I believe the meds created this symptom when I read this article....

 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2989833/

 

 


 

Zoloft . On 10-15 years started 100 mg last dose 200mg tapered to zero in one month.. psych dr advise Last dose:  50mg Zoloft in February 2017

5mg  Olanzipine - 1 -2 yrs last dose 5 mg in Jan 2017 told to stop within a weEk

 

NOTE:  had very bad withdrawal symptoms with discontinuation of Zoloft and Olanzipine.. very very seriously suicidal... 

 

450mg Effexor XR - started at 75mg a couple of years ago, increasing every few months until I got to 450mg

beginning in February to July 22 - 450, 300, 150, 75, 37.5 , 16.5 mg

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brassmonkey

Emotional Blunting is one of the major side effects of all of these drugs.  It's how they work.  They don't cure anything,  just make us not care about it any more.  I had Emotional Blunting from the time of my second updose (from 30 to 40mg) all the way through most of my taper.  That would be about 12 years.  It didn't come on all at once but rather crept in over many months.  I could feel the slow slide into total not caring.  It took a while before I associated it with the drugs.  Once I understood that I was able to accept it and work against it.  There wasn't much I could do to improve the feelings but once I started to taper and the lower doses kicked in I began to see some improvements. But it does take a long time.  I've been drug free for five months now and can still experience EB while in waves.


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

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

Current dose 0.000mg 04-15-2017

 

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

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