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Bellisimo

☼ Bellisimo: This is my story. I have been to hell and back

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Bellisimo

Hey all

 

Thanks for letting me join this forum were I can find people who have gone thru same as me and people who are still fighting.

 

This is my story. Im Bella, 26years old girl from sweden. For 6 years ago I went to my doctor becuase i felt i needed something because I felt lill down from time to time, maybe little more than normal downs but I have had a rough childhood and in my 20s i was kinda exhausted both mentally and in my body. The doctor never did an evestigasion of what kind of diagnos i had, she asked me simple like a few questions and that was it, she told me to take citalopram 20mg.

 

By this time I had no clue at all what antidepp was, i just trusted her that it would "treat me" .. I started on a dose 10mg daily then reduced to 20mg.. The first week i had many up and downs , and it was a living hell emotianlly, but i made it and stayed on 20mg .. after a year i started to feel kinda good, but had lost all my feelings, cudnt cry no more, i had gain much in weight, i was hungry constantly and tired constantly but i felt good in my head, didnt feel "depressed" or "aniexy" well.. she told me, now u should quit, i did that.. after i had quit my ssri i cried daily for 1 months had the worst agressions ever and felt that life is just **** so doc said, we go u back on medicine..

 

WHAT I DIDNT REALISE was that i was suffering from withdraw symtoms , she never told me.. i went back up to my ssri , stayed for 3 years THEN my fighting was started. After 4 years on citalopram from doses from 10mg to max 40mg i decided this have to come to an end.. The side effects i had got during these years was: gained much in weight High bloodpressure My sugar got higher, i was checked for diabetic My kidneys had troubles i didnt feel any feeling at all wasnt happy, wasnt depressed i suffered from insomnia, didnt sleep at night cudnt I suffered from extreme tremor SO i wanted to quit this for good and was happy that i was gonna quit and i thought it was gonna be easy with withdraws just as crying and feeling REALLY angry.. but no. This is when the REAL heal started!

 

My second try to quit. I got SO aggressive, so maniac, so depressed it was not from this world, I had extremly aniexy and during this period i even tried to kill myself a few times, i got heavy blackouts, lost my memory.. and so on.. I went back on ssri after around 3 months. - stayed on it for a few months more then decided to give it a new try, i had realised what this drug had did to my brain, it was awful feeling stuck on it..

 

Ok my third try to quit: It started with real dizziness, i got so confused, i was shaking extremly much daily , i had brain zaps daily , (brain zaps was now new for me, and it scared the hell out of me first time i got it, thought i got a brain tumour or so).. I lost my speech for a period, and when i spoke i cudnt speak a fully meaning, the words wasnt correct , ppl didnt understand.. half my body was "not there" i felt like i really got a braindamage! I got scared and lost , was confused and no one told me you are going thru withdraws.. I thought i was dying.. - back on medicine after a few months fighting my forth try to quit: A LIVING HELL ( i realised this time that as long as i was going on this drug more withdraws i was gonna suffer after every quit,) this time was the first time i had to experience a panicattack,

 

I had several panicattacks in one night , one rolled in after another, for 6 hours, i was so scared that i almost got paralyse of chock.. I was up running thru my home for 6 hours with hospital in the phone some of the time and the rest of the time i was in such panic i cudnt do anything, i had never ever experience anything like that before and thought this is it , now im dying.. For 3months i was so sick from panicattacks, i cudnt sleep , i cudnt eat, i lost so much kilos during these months, i was too scared to go out, i had so bad migraine that i cudnt have any light on, i was so dizzy that i cud bearly stand up, i felt like i was drogged 24/7, i had the worst nightmares ever, 3-4 nightmares of 2hours sleep! I woke up constantly after i just fell asleep in panic again with a such high pulse i cud feel my heart in my throat.. I was so confused and chocked, got stress marks over my whole body and was suffering really bad.

 

After 4 months my fight was over and i felt pls god just let me live, cant do this anymore, i had lost friends, work, everything! I manage to go to doc, i was so in panic all the time that i cudnt even sit still at docs place, this was first time he gave me back medicine ssri, PLUS atarax to calm down.. to go back this time on the medicine was almost MORE of a living hell then earlier, my panicattacks got worse, and everything was so crazy that i was so scared to do anything at all, i lost it totally and stayed in bed for so long, my bf by then had to give me food and help me in everyway i was suffering so bad from all kind of symtoms.. MY LAST TRY to get off this extreme dangerous drug.

 

After a few months from recovering from my last quit I told myself this time, This is not a life, I cant live with this medicine, i loose everything that is me, it destroys my body and just bc i start this medicine, it end up im sitting with a few different medicines bc of some of the side effects, going more and more into the deep dark spiral of drugs.. i said to myself, THIS will be the LAST time im quitting, if im gonna die during this quit, then let god take me with him, iwas so sick and tired from everything and just wanted to live without this drug, by this time i knew it was withdraw i was suffering from quitting, every single time i asked doc about this , they all said, u will feel little bad, like a flu .. YE RIGHT!

 

I reduced my medicine over a year just to go into such small doses as possible to make it easier, cant say it did it easier, i understand being on ssri for 6 years make it hard quit, i know that ssri for 1,2, max 3 years wud make it easier but this is the worst thing i ever been thru in my whole life. seriously. Ok so one day august 5, 2013 it was the day when i didnt had to keep taking my pills.. the first week was dizziness, a few brainzaps and some other problems, it all started a lill while after being off ssri... Panicattacks not from this world, so intense Suffer from migraine often, my head is banging so hard that i dont know what to do Tremor, i shake alot, feel it into my bones! I hallucinate from time to time, when im falling asleep or when i wake up , the world twists around and nothing is the same I loose "myself" and dont reconize me in my own house I have huge musclepain

 

I have cramps , spceially in right side of my body I have cramps in diapragma I have aniexy , very intense I have problem remember things or how to do things

 

it feels like to learn how to do things all over again

 

i cant handle stress at all

 

my eyes burns constant and my ears hurt also from the huge migrane

 

im so tired all the time and when im not tired im extremly hyper in my brain

 

I feel ill constant and can bearly eat

 

The list can be so long of all my symtoms, ive been off my ssri now complete for 5months and this is my day. I have been into emergency a few times bc i felt "now im dying" im scared daily , i cant work atm , and have to stay home from work , im trying to get out of the door to NOT get isolated, bc isolated will ruin my whole world even more, i feel weird with people bc i have trouble to speak and feel like im not connecting with my body,m like my brain works by itself now , weird feeling.. I have no idea if i ever will get back my life. When i tell doc all about my symtoms he dont believe for one sec its withdraw and want me back on ssri, why are docs doing this? Is it not obvoius that if a brain got extra hormone for many years it will take TIME to recover and start to reduce itself and so on, isnt that obvoius, like with any drug.. why cant i talk to my doctor and he will understand?  

 

Ok.. so i got my ssri bc i was a lill bit depressed from time to time.. my medicine story ends with me suffering from huge panicdisorder, aniexy for everything and a million of other symtoms in my body. Is this the result of my medicationtime or is this what doc dont believe it is "withdraws" ?

 

anyway, ty for taking ur time to read my story, im a fighter and i will keep going until my body give up. I will NOT go back to these drugs .. i started with one medicine, i had during these years take 3 medicines and was gonna start medicine for also high bloodpressure if i didnt quit .. what are these drugs actually do to our brains? im scared to trust anyone today.

 

Good luck everyone out there, its not easy but if many people have did it and survive , we can aswell, and dont kill yourself, i know many times its so hard coming off medicines that the only way out seem to be to end this life.. but hang in there and it will get better, that is atleast my dream and hope.

 

During this hell of a crazy trip there are a few things i have learnt.

 

1. it gets harder and harder for every year you take ssri to quit it.

2. it takes time for the brain to recover

3. during the healing process , go buy vitamins, go talk to vitamin experts and so on, do everything u can to give ur body what it needs , spcieally now..

4. have calming pills when u going thru the worst panicattacks ( not benzo , wudnt be my advice ) heavy addicted

5. tell all ur friends, family, work everyone what u are going thru and let urself go thru this hell,

6. NEVER feel ashame for this, this is NOT ur fault, this is a normal process in the body u have to trust with all ur heart that its gonna be better

7. SLEEP much ( if u can ) not get enough sleep will make u suffer more 8. exercise if you can

9. write diary,

10.  talk to other ppl who going thru the same

11. DONT GIVE UP and go back to the medicine again, you are probably like everyone else here suffering real BAD withdraws and not need the medicine again for a diagnos..

Edited by Altostrata
added paragraph breaks for readability

2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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Meimeiquest

Wow, Bella, what a journey! You are with people here who understand.... Welcome!


1st round Prozac 1989/90, clear depression symptoms. 2nd round Prozac started 1999 when admitted to dr. I was tired. Prozac pooped out, switch to Cymbalta 3/2006. Diagnosed with bipolar disorder due to mania 6/2006--then I was taken abruptly off Cymbalta and didn't know I had SSRI withdrawal. Lots of meds for my intractable "bipolar" symptoms.

Zyprexa started about 9/06, mostly 5mg. Tapered 4/12 through12/29/12

Wellbutrin. XL 300 mg started 1/07, tapered 1/18/13 through 7/8/13

Oxazepam mostly continuously since 6/06, 30mg since 12/12, tapered 1.17.14 through 8.26.15

11/06 Lithium 600mg twice daily, 2.2.14 400mg TID DIY liquid, 2.12.14 1150mg, 3.2.14 1100mg, 3.18.14 1075mg, 4/14 updose to 1100mg, 6.1.14 900 mg capsules 7.8.14 810mg, 8.17.14 725mg, 8.24.24 700mg...10.22.14 487.5mg, 3.9.15 475mg, 4.1.15 462.5mg 4.21.15 450mg 8.11.15 375mg, 11.28.15 362.5mg, back to 375mg four days later, 3.4.16 updose to 475 (too much going on to risk trouble)

9/4/13 Toprol-XL 25mg daily for sudden hypertension, tapered 11.12.13 through 5.3.14, last 10 days or so switched to atenolol

7.4.14 Started Walsh Protocol

56 years old

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Needmylifeback

My heavens Bella!! I am so sorry for all you have been put through!!

 

It's sad to hear that drs across the world are ignoring their patients well being :(


Withdrawing meds: * lexapro 20mg (?) since maybe winter 2009-10. Self weaned this summer stopping in sept 2013 (I just cut in half for a few weeks, then took every other day then a couple x a week then nothing); *Xanax 0.5mg 4xday (dr cut by 50% twice in 16days oct 5-21st. By late Nov, dropped from 1/2 a 0.5mg tab tid to bid...by dec 1st, I was suicidal. Told dr I had to hold!) am still holding at 1/4 a 0.5mg tab bid since early dec; *sept 9 began buspar 7.5mg bid, raised to 15mg bid oct, nov 23 raised it 30mg am holding pm dose at 15mg. By Dec 11th I knew my liver was heading into failure again... Heart rapidly moving towards stroke levels. BP escalating rapidly towards stroke levels... BP moving past 200/130+ and heart rate hitting 200s everyday after buspar dose. Ribs were burning from being pushed so far out by the swollen liver plus itching severe- needed scissors to scratch deep enough but still itching 24/7. Checked for buspar symptoms I had them all plus a few underlying conditions making buspar contraindicated. For me buspar is literally toxic.

*buspar taper:

~dec 11th dropped from 30mg am/15mg pm to 15mg am/pm

~dec 17th pm dropped to 12.5mg am/pm

~dec 29th pm dropped to 10mg am/pm

~jan 5th pm dropped to 7.5mg am/pm

~jan 7th pm dropped to 5mg am/pm {dropped in only two days under pressure from alto to drop Now... Bc she then realized I was referring to significant organ failures and was dealing with serious side effects not merely inconvenient ones. My w/d side effects spiked}

~jan 8th I raised the pm dose to 6.25mg leaving the am dose at 5mg; stayed at 5mg am/6.25mg pm for a few days

~jan 12th pm dropped to 5mg am/pm

~jan 18th pm dropped to 5mg am/3.75mg pm; experienced a crushing spike in symptoms including liver irritation and "lightening storm headaches" among others. Currently at this dose.

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Karma

Hi Bella

 

Welcome to our community.  You might look through our Symptoms and Self-Care section for ideas on what can help as you give yourself time to heal.  We find that a high quality fish oil can help with anxiety: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/36-king-of-supplements-omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil/

 

and also magnesium can be calming and may help with sleep:  http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1300-magnesium-natures-calcium-channel-blocker/.

 

When you get a moment it would help if you could summarize your withdrawal history in your signature.  You'll find guidance on that in this thread: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/893-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

 

I'm sorry for the awful experience you've had.  We find that medical professionals are not educated about withdrawal.  It is common to hear medical professionals identify withdrawal symptoms as evidence of the original condition and either increase the dose or prescribe an additional medication.  But they are incorrect.  Withdrawal is real.

 

You will find lots of support here.

 

Karma


2007 @ 375 mg Effexor - 11/29/2011 - 43.75 mg Effexor (regular) & 1 mg Xanax & 200 mg Gabapentin
Xanax taper: 3/11/12 - 0.9375 mg, 3/25/12 - 0.875 mg, 4/6/12 - 0.8125 mg, 4/18/12 - 0.75 mg; 1/16 0.6875 mg;
Effexor taper: 1/29/12 - 40.625 mg, 4/29/12 - 39.875 mg, 5/11/12 - Switched to liquid Effexor, 5/25/12 - 38 mg, 7/6/12 - 35 mg, 8/17/12 - 32 mg, 9/14/12 - 30 mg, 10/19/12 - 28 mg, 11/9/12 - 26 mg, 11/30/12 - 24 mg, 01/14/13 - 22 mg. 02/25/13 - 20.8 mg, 03/18/13 - 19.2 mg, 4/15/13 - 17.6 mg, 8/10/13 - 16.4 mg, 9/7/13 - 15.2 mg, 10/19/13 - 14 mg, 1/15/14 - 13.2 mg, 3/1/2014 - 12.6 mg, 5/4/14 - 12 mg, 8/1/14 - 11.4 mg, 8/29/14 - 10.8 mg; 10/14/14 - 10.2 mg; 12/15/14 - 10 mg, 1/11/15 - 9.5 mg, 2/8/15 - 9 mg, 3/21/15 - 8.5 mg, 5/1/15 - 8 mg, 6/9/15 - 7.5 mg, 7/8/15 - 7 mg, 8/22/15 - 6.5 mg, 10/4/15 - 6 mg; 1/1/16 - 5.6 mg; 2/6/16 - 5.2 mg; 4/9 - 4.8 mg; 7/7 4.5 mg; 10/7 4.25 mg; 11/4 4.0 mg; 11/25 3.8 mg; 4/24 3.6 mg; 5/27 3.4 mg; 7/8 3.2 mg ... 10/18 2.8 mg; 1/18 2.6 mg; 4/7 2.4 mg; 5/26 2.15mg; 8/18 1.85 mg; 10/7 1.7 mg; 12/1 1.45 mg; 3/2 1.2 mg; 5/4 0.90 mg; 6/1 0.80 mg; 6/22 0.65 mg; 08/03 0.50 mg, 08/10 0.45 mg, 10/05 0.325 mg, 11/23 0.2 mg, 12/14 0.15 mg, 12/21 0.125 mg, 02/28 0.03125 mg, 2/15 0.015625 mg, 2/29/20 0.00 mg - OFF Effexor

I am not a medical professional - this is not medical advice. My suggestions are based on personal experience, reading, observation and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers

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Bellisimo

Hey guys, THANK U SO MUCH for yours words, means alot! It feels so good not being alone in this, for a long time i thought i was since doc didnt believe a word i said, i honestly thought i was crazy now in my head and a patient that wud be locked in somewere..

 

honestly "needmylifeback" im kinda sure today that docs dont have so much experience themselves about this and dont have any clue, i know one doc i met and i asked him .. how long will i suffer from this and what is happening to med and so on, he actually told me.

 

- i have no idea, i give ppl medicine , i dont end it

 

i got so scared after that realising they dont have such muck knowledge that ssri can cause this

:(


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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Nikki

So sorry you experienced this.  The Doctor you went to really hurt you thru lack of knowledge.  You are not alone.  Your symptoms are WD symptoms.  It's not you.  It is the drug.

 

I just got off Citalopram.  I can identify with alot of what you experienced.  What you said is true, it does take alot of time to heal.  You sound very strong and determined which is great.

 

Your advise at the bottom of your post about how to take care of ourselves is so true.  Thank you for the reminder.

 

It sounds like you have a plan to take care of yourself which should bring you closer to feeling better.


Intro: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1902-nikki-hi-my-rundown-with-ads/

 

Paxil 1997-2004

Crossed over to Lexapro Paxil not available

at Pharmacies GSK halted deliveries

Lexapro 40mgs

Lexapro taper (2years)

Imipramine

Imipramine and Celexa

Now Nefazadone/Imipramine 50mgs. each

45mgs. Serzone  50mgs. Imipramine

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Bellisimo

Can someone please tell me if they have been going thru the same as me, I mean i can handle many symtoms But when it comes to panickattack role in after another and confusing i get really scared!I wanna see if this is normal, im so worried my brain is damage for good or somethingI can feel good then suddenly everythings gets up and down, hard to exlain but i cant connect with anything, I mean for example .. im sitting at my bed, then some weird feeling in my head and then i realise i have no clue what im doing anymore, i have no clue were i am or what my cats name are or anything! i get so scared to get stuff in that symtom!And since my body cant sleep at night longer, seems like i fall asleep late mornings, then suddenly wake up in real panic and same time dont know were i am, im walking around in my house with a feeling " i have to connect, i have to connect, pls come back - memory, pls" and when i finally get back to remember my cats name, and whats up and down im so exhausted from this fear and start crying lots.. is this really a normal process during revocery? I get thought like, omg what if im really going crazy and staying there if im not going back to my medicine.. (which i never would) but this is scaring me so bad. 


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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Bellisimo

Hey Nikki. It feels so good to know that u also took citalopram and reconize symtoms like i have, do u still have them?
Do u ever also loose ur memory sometimes, like from one min to another u r really confused wondering were u are and so ?


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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dekiru

Hi Bellisimo,

It does get better. I know it's hard and scary right now. I also had many panic attacks daily, but after a while the anxiety level I was feeling subsided. I'm 1 year 10months off now, and my anxiety level is much lower than it was when I first came off the meds.

Take care of yourself and remember withdrawal symptoms are signs your body is healing. I made a poster of that and keep it on my wall, so when I'm really struggling I look at it.


01/2006 Put on Prozac for anxiety and panic attacks 08/2008 Came off Zoloft after tapering don't remember taper, lost weight, felt like had cold constantly, very panicky, pain everywhere (misdiagnosed fibromyalgia), head funny.05/2010 put back on Zoloft03/2012 came completely off Zoloft followed Dr standard taper- no appetite, lost weight (0.5 stone), flu-like feelings constantly, pain everywhere, head funny, nausea, very panicky, very strong emotions etc Lost 1 stone.04/2013 improving. actually put on some weight and hungry most of the time. Still burning pain joints, stomach upset, headache/feel faint and emotions very strong. Chest very painful too.01/2014 improving still. Gained weight!! Still hungry. Still headache/feel faint and strong emotions and chest/shoulder muscles painful. Periods irregular and very painful. Very tired. Joints burn only if eat refined sugars. Started eating fruits again.03/2014 2 years off. Now intolerances developed to nuts and soya. Permanently hungry, Emotions strong but started healing psychological reasons I was put on antidepressants with therapist. Shoulder pain bad, heady often, very tired.06/2014 flu-like symptoms returned, many intolerances, stomach painful, skin crawling feeling, muscles painful, very emotional. :-((

09/2016 over 4.5 years off, no real changes in symptoms, still much pain, headiness, heart weird, digestion bad, hormones unbalanced, nausea yet very hungry, tired, flu like symptoms etc etc.

<p>taking - vit C, probiotics and digestive enzymesI have Aspergers Syndrome.

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Petunia

Can someone please tell me if they have been going thru the same as me, I mean i can handle many symtoms But when it comes to panickattack role in after another and confusing i get really scared! I wanna see if this is normal,

 

 

 

I've been off Lexapro about 3 years and off all medications 6 months.  I get some of the symptoms you write about, at first they were bad and very scary, I didn't know anything about withdrawal.  I've only been recovering properly in the last 6 months, since stopping all meds, symptoms have improved, but I still get them quite bad, in waves.

 

My tolerance of any stress is very low now.

 

My memory problems include not being able to remember words or how to do things I used to know how to do. Sometimes, I suddenly wont recognize my surroundings for a few seconds, especially if I'm out, sometimes it lasts longer.  Much of the time, my surroundings don't feel familiar, like they should, or like they used to, its a common symptom of withdrawal (and anxiety) called derealization.  I often wake up in panic, especially if I sleep during the day, so I try not to fall asleep during the day.

 

Like you I have a problem with cold feet, even when the rest of me is hot.  I also get a burning feeling inside my body, but mine is more like a feeling of constant, low level electricity.  This comes and goes, its getting slowly better.  I also get tremor, dizziness and muscle pain and can't remember how to use items, its almost like having to learn how to live all over again.

 

I've also had, and have other symptoms you haven't mentioned.

 

What you are going through is very 'normal' for withdrawal and it does get better with time.  Maybe it would help to read other member stories.


I'm not a doctor.  My comments are not medical advise. These are my opinions based on my own experience and what I've learned. Please discuss your situation with a medical practitioner who has knowledge of tapering and withdrawal...if you are lucky enough to find one.

My Introduction Thread

Full Drug and Withdrawal History

Brief Summary

Several SSRIs for 13 years starting 1997 (for mild to moderate partly situational anxiety) Xanax PRN ~ Various other drugs over the years for side effects

2 month 'taper' off Lexapro 2010

Short acute withdrawal, followed by 2 -3 months of improvement then delayed protracted withdrawal

DX ADHD followed by several years of stimulants and other drugs trying to manage increasing symptoms

Failed reinstatement of Lexapro and trial of Prozac (became suicidal)

May 2013 Found SA, learned about withdrawal, stopped taking drugs...healing begins.

Protracted withdrawal, with a very sensitized nervous system, slowly recovering as time passes

Supplements which have helped: Vitamin C, Magnesium, Taurine

Bad reactions: Many supplements but mostly fish oil and Vitamin D

June 2016 - Started daily juicing, mostly vegetables and lots of greens.

Aug 2016 - Oct 2016 Best window ever, felt almost completely recovered

Oct 2016 -Symptoms returned - bad days and less bad days.

April 2018 - No windows, but significant improvement, it feels like permanent full recovery is close.

VIDEO: Where did the chemical imbalance theory come from?



VIDEO: How are psychiatric diagnoses made?



VIDEO: Why do psychiatric drugs have withdrawal syndromes?



VIDEO: Can psychiatric drugs cause long-lasting negative effects?

VIDEO: Dr. Claire Weekes

 

 

 

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Bellisimo

Thank you so much for this information, it gave me much more hope i can go thru this with you all guys on this forum


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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skybert

Hi there neighbor:) I can relate to a lot of what you write here. I have quite a bit of experience with panic attacks and I was put on the same medication.

I reacted very badly going on the meds and very badly going off I know how awful this feels. You have come to a good place with a lot of great support. I have lost all faith in my doctor and the system that is supposed to help me get back on track. I rely on myself my family and this forum for everything now. Much like you they wanted to keep medicating me after I got very sick from going off this crap but i refused and did only a small updose as recommended from these people to stabilize. I am slowly with a lot of setbacks getting better overall. And you will to. The key is stability with everything you do. Sleep at the same time, eat the same food that your body can handle right now, (good gut health is very important and is closely connected with the way you feel) I currently go with a paelo type diet right now with some modifications. Take your supplements at the same time everyday and pay close attention to how you react to different things. I am fairly new to the forums but I have learned a lot here and it works. 
Feel free to contact me if you want to write in swedish or something neighbor:)


Started Esctialopram (Lexapro) 10mg june 2012. 20mg august 2012.15mg february 2013 - 10mg april 2013 - 5mg may 2013 0mg - 26.june 2013 Crashed mid. august 2013. Reinstated 2mg Escitalopram 22.september 2013 2.5mg 29 september 2013, 3mg 15 november 2013.

First taper from 3mg to 2.7mg 10 may 2014

Micro cuts since then.

Current dose september 2017 1.7mg

Current supplements: Nothing. (GI issues)

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ruby

Hi Bellisimo,

 

All the symptoms you're experiencing seem like classic SSRI withdrawal hell. I'm glad you found support here when doctors can make things a lot worse by giving more drugs or making you seem like you're the one that's crazy. You're not! 

 

Most symptoms will subside over time with patience. I still have memory issues after 18 months off; can't remember words and names and it's embarrassing since I teach! But I can speak more fluidly now and have conversations with people. The high anxiety you experience will also lessen and I know it can be frightening.

 

The website beyondmeds is really helpful.


1993-2003 Prozac 20mg
2003-2010 Zoloft 10mg
2010-2012 Zoloft 10mg to 1mg (taper)

July 2012 - Drug free!

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Bellisimo

Hey Ruby, im so sorry to hear that you still have memory issues and stuff, that is really bad after so many months! After how long did your withdrawals hit you , directly after ur stop or weeks/months later?

 

im in great pain in many way, my bf left me today also on a skype call, i was crying lots, thought that now my heart wud stop bc the great sorrow i felt for he left me, he promised me yesterday he wud go thru this with me :( today he left me, i havent be able to sleep yet, im crying all night..

 

i have thought like " maybe i shud go back on ssri " then thought like " no hang in there you can make it " the thing is im loosing my job, now mny bf and everything im scared and lost..

 

i have been feeling my withdrawasl has changed posision its really weird feeling, from going numbness in legs and feet its now in my face


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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ruby

Most of the withdrawal symptoms started to really appear during tapering of the drug. And the memory issues were apparent even while on "normal" dosage, it's just that the withdrawals made it much worse when I was no longer on zoloft. However in my case I was on these neurotoxic drugs for almost 19 years, much longer than you. So you may recover faster, I really don't know. SSRI withdrawal is unique to each individual.

 

Sorry to hear about your breakup, it must hurt a lot with everything going on. You'll find that your life will unravel during this process and come out of it as a different person. 

 

All of the physical sensations will eventually pass. hang in there.


1993-2003 Prozac 20mg
2003-2010 Zoloft 10mg
2010-2012 Zoloft 10mg to 1mg (taper)

July 2012 - Drug free!

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Needmylifeback

Bella.... My dr put me on a variety of psych meds for six years throwing more in and ripping others away.... I had NO idea how much that was imparing me until four weeks ago when I found this forum.

 

All the drs have pointed to my two big injuries, plus the death of my child by my divirce... and have kept all their focus there. They have not once looked at what my neuro dr was putting me through.

 

Neuro began (over and under) dosing me in 2002. I left their care in May 2008. Prior to dealing with them I had a perfect memory. I automatically recalled anything and everything I had ever heard, read, or seen. Whether I wanted to forget it or not. By my mid 30s I was being given genetics articles to read (without any training at all in this field!) and my childrens nephrologist was right... He suspected I could read it just fine.... Remarkable since it's rare for any single paragraph to contain any recognizable words!

 

Within a couple of years of being under the treatment of neurologists, I could not fill out a check. I too would not be able to work an ATM or even a laptop. I played television shows I had already seen and whose ensembles were familiar to me.... Even so I would have to stop, back up and repeat segments so often that it took me twice as long to watch any show (a half hour show would take an hour; an hour show took two hours).... All bc I could not understand my own native language. I once spoke three languages fluently enough to read novels, read historical accounts, and even dream in those other languages. Now I could not understand a stupid tv show in English.

 

I also suffered physical declines.

 

I have not taken any neuro meds since may 2008.... Until a pain clinic placed me on lexapro in early 2010. Other underlying physical conditions began improving at this time as well bc of other treatments. Then in feb/mar 2011 the pain clinic added Xanax to my meds. In the summer of 2013 I took myself off lexapro quite quickly. The pain clinic decided I must be off Xanax fall 2013.... Made dangerous cuts.... And gave me a new med buspar which is toxic given my underlying conditions.

 

Over the last two years I have slowly been able to regain my ability to read and even remember old memories. Short term memories are still impaired. I went into crisis late nov early dec 2013: a combination of Xanax w/d and toxic levels of buspar. During crisis periods I again cannot read and comprehend. My short term memory problems make it very difficult or impossible to organize the info I read and store it efficiently enough to comprehend the information I see in front of me. When I am not in crisis, I am once again able to read medical and technical journals and retain and organize the information I gather! Sometimes I must read it several times to be able to sort and store the info. But it's still progress from where I was. :)

 

Even though I have been steadily trending upward in cognitive functions this year, I still "sundown". Meaning my cognitive abilities disintegrate by 5pm and trend worse and worse as the night goes on. I often can't recall the names of basic objects or people I have known my whole life!! I just reassure myself that in the morning it will come back to me.... And it does :)

 

So being patient with myself is one key! When I need to be down again, I remind myself that this is my body needing to rest and repair (even if it can't sleep) and soon I will be up and going again. Also recognize any progress you make from several months ago.... And keep reminding yourself of those improvements. When you have memory lapses, relax and say it will come back to you when you feel better... And it will... Eventually! We need to be gentle with ourselves in our recovery.

 

But take heart!! You are young :) and your mind is incredibly resilient. Time will do miraculous things! I just turned 50yo. My nightmare began when I was just 39yo. I am not who I was before ..... But I am closer today than I have been since 2002. I pray you will find improvements in your own condition... And cling to those! They represent your hope for a return to a normal life again. The more I have focused on the small victories I have had, the more victories I notice! and the more victories I then gain. Time is a glorious healer!! That is on your side :) You have all the promise of a bright future in front of you!!


Withdrawing meds: * lexapro 20mg (?) since maybe winter 2009-10. Self weaned this summer stopping in sept 2013 (I just cut in half for a few weeks, then took every other day then a couple x a week then nothing); *Xanax 0.5mg 4xday (dr cut by 50% twice in 16days oct 5-21st. By late Nov, dropped from 1/2 a 0.5mg tab tid to bid...by dec 1st, I was suicidal. Told dr I had to hold!) am still holding at 1/4 a 0.5mg tab bid since early dec; *sept 9 began buspar 7.5mg bid, raised to 15mg bid oct, nov 23 raised it 30mg am holding pm dose at 15mg. By Dec 11th I knew my liver was heading into failure again... Heart rapidly moving towards stroke levels. BP escalating rapidly towards stroke levels... BP moving past 200/130+ and heart rate hitting 200s everyday after buspar dose. Ribs were burning from being pushed so far out by the swollen liver plus itching severe- needed scissors to scratch deep enough but still itching 24/7. Checked for buspar symptoms I had them all plus a few underlying conditions making buspar contraindicated. For me buspar is literally toxic.

*buspar taper:

~dec 11th dropped from 30mg am/15mg pm to 15mg am/pm

~dec 17th pm dropped to 12.5mg am/pm

~dec 29th pm dropped to 10mg am/pm

~jan 5th pm dropped to 7.5mg am/pm

~jan 7th pm dropped to 5mg am/pm {dropped in only two days under pressure from alto to drop Now... Bc she then realized I was referring to significant organ failures and was dealing with serious side effects not merely inconvenient ones. My w/d side effects spiked}

~jan 8th I raised the pm dose to 6.25mg leaving the am dose at 5mg; stayed at 5mg am/6.25mg pm for a few days

~jan 12th pm dropped to 5mg am/pm

~jan 18th pm dropped to 5mg am/3.75mg pm; experienced a crushing spike in symptoms including liver irritation and "lightening storm headaches" among others. Currently at this dose.

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Bellisimo

Hey all!

 

After a time with extreme terror i can feel my body has start to calm down. I havent had a panicattack since almost 1,5 day now! That is much for me! My heart has stayed calm! My memory is getting better and better, i can now cook food without to have to put alarm to not forget that im cooking food.. I can go into my kitchen and know what imma do, i can grab a fork and know "i eat with this" IT FEELS wonderful! I can look out from the window and see clear colors and the reality and know this is daytime! My right body half is back to use again, i can now feel that my body is my body and that im using it which was scary when i cudnt earlier..

My muscle cramps is much less now , maybe since i started to take extra magnesium a long while back ago.
My migraine is milder and my tinnitus is gone

 

The stimulation is better, i can now watch tv without freaking out from the sound :)

 

When much of my terror inside got milder and when I realised more and more what i was going thru my body started to calm down and i can now sit still for a longer while, i can enjoy - eat food again, even if im still feeling ill and like throwing up.
 

I have been out talking to people and without getting panic!

 

Atm im crying LOTS i mean LOTS, i cant stop , it feels like now every sorrow and pain ive had inside my body during ALL THESE YEARS on the drug when i cudnt cry, coming now.. many past memories coming up and im both blaming myself and feel useless but same time thankful im alive.

 

I have no idea for how long i will be symtomfree, i do understand it will come and go, like i said before i can handle much, but please god not this terror.. terror for everything. I have never ever felt such terror before in my whole life and ive been thru lots!

 

I never thought ssri was this strong, every doctor i ever went to told me different, a mild drug, will just help u a little..

I now know for sure, docs know NOTHING and that is sad fact, and they are the worlds biggest drugdealers ever!

 

I will never ever put any drug in my system again... this trip have learnt me much i can say

 

Now im trying to rebuild up my life from scratch, my life after being on ssri for 6 years is much worse then before i went on it.. if i only knew by then that this drug wud cause this to me...

 

or if i only knew during all these years when I was going off it that this was withdrawals and not that ive suddenly got 4 new diagnoses and need go back on medicine! :S

 

 

To everyone out there, if there is some people i have huge respect for , it is you all brave people who go thru this , this extreme terror and with no understanding from docs and what so ever, living on the hope it will get better one day and living together with other ppl going thru the same..

 

we are living truth that this drug can cause these extremly withdrawals and i wish , i wish so bad that i cud just tell every1 that now , at this moment consider to start an ssri or benzo drug for a mild reason.. and docs just give em away like candy..

 

I HOPE it will come more info in the future about this, for the humanity! When im fully cured i will somehow start something about this to wake up people even more

 

I wanna thank everyone in here for the great support you all give, you are like my family :wub:


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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Hopefull

I wish you all the best! I hope you are getting better! I know how you are feeling.


DRUG HISTORY:

 

November 2013- Zoloft, ( Bad reaction).

January 2014 - March 2014 Seroquel.( Quit Cold Turkey).

January2014- Mirtazapine, I was taking 15mg at one stage, reduced to 7.5mg, Pgad reactions to Mirtazapine. Doctor kept increasing it to 37.5mg, until July 2014. No improvement, experiencing panic attacks, on 37.5 mg. I had enough by October 2014. Began tapering.

October 2014- Started tapering Mirtazapine from 37.5mg.

September 2015- Down to 4mg of Mirtazapine. Crashed.

September 16th- Up dosed to 5mg. Held this dose for almost 5 months. Stabilised.

February 2016- Began tapering again. From 5mg to 4.5mg of Mirtazapine. (Rocking the boat, again)! Lol. :(

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Bellisimo

Bella.... My dr put me on a variety of psych meds for six years throwing more in and ripping others away.... I had NO idea how much that was imparing me until four weeks ago when I found this forum.

 

All the drs have pointed to my two big injuries, plus the death of my child by my divirce... and have kept all their focus there. They have not once looked at what my neuro dr was putting me through.

 

Neuro began (over and under) dosing me in 2002. I left their care in May 2008. Prior to dealing with them I had a perfect memory. I automatically recalled anything and everything I had ever heard, read, or seen. Whether I wanted to forget it or not. By my mid 30s I was being given genetics articles to read (without any training at all in this field!) and my childrens nephrologist was right... He suspected I could read it just fine.... Remarkable since it's rare for any single paragraph to contain any recognizable words!

 

Within a couple of years of being under the treatment of neurologists, I could not fill out a check. I too would not be able to work an ATM or even a laptop. I played television shows I had already seen and whose ensembles were familiar to me.... Even so I would have to stop, back up and repeat segments so often that it took me twice as long to watch any show (a half hour show would take an hour; an hour show took two hours).... All bc I could not understand my own native language. I once spoke three languages fluently enough to read novels, read historical accounts, and even dream in those other languages. Now I could not understand a stupid tv show in English.

 

I also suffered physical declines.

 

I have not taken any neuro meds since may 2008.... Until a pain clinic placed me on lexapro in early 2010. Other underlying physical conditions began improving at this time as well bc of other treatments. Then in feb/mar 2011 the pain clinic added Xanax to my meds. In the summer of 2013 I took myself off lexapro quite quickly. The pain clinic decided I must be off Xanax fall 2013.... Made dangerous cuts.... And gave me a new med buspar which is toxic given my underlying conditions.

 

Over the last two years I have slowly been able to regain my ability to read and even remember old memories. Short term memories are still impaired. I went into crisis late nov early dec 2013: a combination of Xanax w/d and toxic levels of buspar. During crisis periods I again cannot read and comprehend. My short term memory problems make it very difficult or impossible to organize the info I read and store it efficiently enough to comprehend the information I see in front of me. When I am not in crisis, I am once again able to read medical and technical journals and retain and organize the information I gather! Sometimes I must read it several times to be able to sort and store the info. But it's still progress from where I was. :)

 

Even though I have been steadily trending upward in cognitive functions this year, I still "sundown". Meaning my cognitive abilities disintegrate by 5pm and trend worse and worse as the night goes on. I often can't recall the names of basic objects or people I have known my whole life!! I just reassure myself that in the morning it will come back to me.... And it does :)

 

So being patient with myself is one key! When I need to be down again, I remind myself that this is my body needing to rest and repair (even if it can't sleep) and soon I will be up and going again. Also recognize any progress you make from several months ago.... And keep reminding yourself of those improvements. When you have memory lapses, relax and say it will come back to you when you feel better... And it will... Eventually! We need to be gentle with ourselves in our recovery.

 

But take heart!! You are young :) and your mind is incredibly resilient. Time will do miraculous things! I just turned 50yo. My nightmare began when I was just 39yo. I am not who I was before ..... But I am closer today than I have been since 2002. I pray you will find improvements in your own condition... And cling to those! They represent your hope for a return to a normal life again. The more I have focused on the small victories I have had, the more victories I notice! and the more victories I then gain. Time is a glorious healer!! That is on your side :) You have all the promise of a bright future in front of you!!

Thanks so much for your story, iam so sorry you have to go thru this. I agree that time is a good healer.. Time and support from people going thru the same issues.


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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WinningThrough

Hi Bellisimo

 

I have read your story and my goodness, what a story.

 

You have been through much and yet, your story is so inspirational. Your 10 tips for getting through withdrawal are brilliant. I'm going to write those down.

 

I've noticed you've posted in other peoples threads and it seems you are getting better! That's fantastic!! It's a huge source of comfort to me and, I'm sure, to many others.

 

Keep walking through, brave lady.


The only way out is through.

 

Aug 2013 - Augmentin leading to akathisia

Sept-Nov 2013 - Citalopram 20mg, severe reaction, off at 5mg. Valium 4mg, prn

Oct 2013 - 5 zopiclone tablets, 7.5mg

End Nov 2013-end Feb 2014, Seroquel, top dose 150mg, off at 25mg

End Nov 2013-early march 2014, Zoloft 100mg top dose, off at 25mg

End Dec-2013-early April 2014, lorazepam 1mg prn

April 3rd 2014 zoloft 5mg for a few days. 18/4/14 - zoloft, 1mg. Came off at 0.35 mg,14th June 2014

29 June 2014 - 1mg lorazepam, last ever

29 June 2014 - med free

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Bellisimo

Hi Bellisimo

 

I have read your story and my goodness, what a story.

 

You have been through much and yet, your story is so inspirational. Your 10 tips for getting through withdrawal are brilliant. I'm going to write those down.

 

I've noticed you've posted in other peoples threads and it seems you are getting better! That's fantastic!! It's a huge source of comfort to me and, I'm sure, to many others.

 

Keep walking through, brave lady.

Hii!!

 

Thanks alot! :)

Im glad you liked my posts!

And YES I can sure tell you im so much better!

 

I still have some withdrawal and it goes in waves but i can function and i can work :)

I some nights cry and feel this lonliness and i also experience burning skin LOTS sadly and also tremor and nervpain BUT my athasia seems to be gone and also panicattacks :)

and many more symtoms .. i dont wanna celebrate yet because i know it can come back and become a hell again but ye it gets better and better

 

Love from Bella :)) <3


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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Altostrata

Bella, are there any specific things you felt helped your symptoms?


This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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Bellisimo

I eat magnesium and omega 3

I know exercise helps lots

i quit coffee , that helped much

i took away much sugar , helped too

I reduced stress


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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Altostrata

Well, you're on the road to healing.

 

Thank you for posting here, that it gets better is something many people need to hear.


This is not medical advice. Discuss any decisions about your medical care with a knowledgeable medical practitioner.

"It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has surpassed our humanity." -- Albert Einstein

All postings © copyrighted.

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Bellisimo

yes i will make a proper update after 1 year off and im dying to get there , still 3months to go then its been 12 months!


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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Jose

Bella,

Thanks for sharing your story and your spirit of progress.

I came off venlafaxine about two months ago after nearly 15 years on a ssri rollercoaster, although I must admit most of the time on low dosage. Tried to quit several times before.

What I find this time, and I can see this in your experience, is the will to fight. This is the most powerful factor, and nurturing it and keeping that light on is the number one priority. And just like you write, there are so many sides and angles that one has to work on at the same time, keeping the consistency so something really solid can be built over time. There are so many aspects that we must observe, taking care that all move in the same direction, building RESILIENCE, the ability to withstand shocks and waves!

 

I have now gone through the brain zaps, the confusion, the overwhelming feelings of defeat (they still recur), the rage, the desperation, the inability to think straight or remember clearly, all of that. Panic attacks I have not had for a long time thanks to the breathing techniques I have learnt over the years and the nurturing of the mindful consciousness, but sometimes the feeling of panic attack lurking around is there, as if to strike suddenly. But I'm not afraid of that anymore. I practice conscious breathing most days and many times during the day.

I'm also taking magnesium and omega-3.

I have lowered my dose of caffeine to 1 cup a day in the morning, and have given up alcohol, which I find to have a remarkable impact the day after, even if it's only one beer.

During certain periods a few years back I used to drink quite a lot while on medication, I'd rather not think too much about the damage I may have inflicted myself with this behaviour.

 

I have also made a decision to also get in touch and work with the subconscious me, where the engine of my feelings and motivations lies, to try and gradually sculpt and steer the primal reactions, the inner responses, the triggers to stimuli, thoughts and memories. I'm doing this through self hypnosis and meditation, as well as setting space to let my creativity flow, mainly through creation of music.

 

Like you say, the support from the family and friends is also essential, to help give this whole thing meaning and avoid isolation.

 

In summary, I see myself reflected in you so much, probably like many of us do, and I agree so much with your vision of the many factors that underpin the struggle, the feedback between those many factors and the will to move on, the big loop.

 

Keep up your admirable work, and keep sharing your progress.


1999-2004 citalopram 10 to 20mg with 2-3 withdrawal attempts.
2004 fluvoxamine for 4-5 months aprox. Changed to venlafaxine because of the headaches and dizziness.
2005-March 2014 venlafaxine usually starting on 150mg and coming down to 75 or 37.5. Several withdrawal attempts.
In March 2014 I stopped taking 37.5mg of venlafaxine without tapering.

Went through 5 months of confusion, anxiety, insomnia and desperation. From then I am very slowly recovering, on windows and waves.

Symptoms: muscle stiffness and aches, shortness of breath, abdominal pain, memory loss, inability to concentrate or think straight, difficulty to speak, difficulty to read (improving).

Taking omega3, magnesium, calcium, vitamin E and probiotics.

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Bellisimo

Hello Jose

 

Welcome here and thanks for sharing your story. I wish you all good luck and i will pray for you to (yes i have become half religious during my last months , i wasnt before)
I have stopped drink alcohol for good because im scared of how the reaction will be if i ever put alcohol in my system again, i was a quite heavy drinker while i were on citalopram so i can thank the withdrawals making me sober lol.. same with coffee, im too scared to touch it nowdays and sugar. Just small amounts , tiny bits will speed up my brain, cause allergic reactions and drive me into a speedup manic shaky body lol..

 

Yes you are right, I have a great will, even in the darkess periods were i cant see any light i remind myself that , this is not myself and it will get better and i often come up with the alternative, if im dying (sometimes i just feel like im dying bc i feel so sick) i ask myself do i really want to be on that dangerous drug just bc i think i cant survive this? No.. I rather then die. Its weird to explain but i know how bad i were on the drug and im scared to even take any medicines today. If i have pain in my body i rather stick with it then take any medication for it because im worried it will get worse.

 

Im used to stick with high pain , done it many times, like one time i hurt my knee soo bad i coudlnt walk or anything, the pain was so intense and extreme i could bearly breethe, 4 men carry me to get a van to go home, at home i suffered, but i could handle it , when i a few days later came into hospital they said i had hurt something real bad.. and i started with exercise, painkillers and so on for many months from there, if i wouldnt get better they would operate me but this is funny after i stopped ssri my knee got much better..

 

I also had double side kidneystones once, i laid home screaming in pain  but since i can tolerate quite much pain so when i called the doctor and said i have terrible pain in my back , belly and so on and fever and i said i think i might suffer from kidneystone, he said, if u having kidneystones u wudnt be able to talk right now, i told him when i get the push of it and the pain i cant sit, lay, nothing it hurts soo much, he never believed me, i stayed home.. but in pain , then i got worse went into  hossy they put me in and checked me with scan, i had double site kidneystones, the nurses and docs there asked me, how could you stand the pain for this. .. im get so pissed when i think about what i have gone through and no one believed me. =(

 

Jose I hope we can have contact during our recoveries, i do feel better but it comes and goes in waves for sure , but i can see some things that have improved and I also see symtoms changed.

Its different for everyone, it feels just weird for me that some people dont suffer at all from quitting lol and some people only suffer for a few weeks / months while others take sometimes years.. it all depends on the person.. That gave me hope you know, knowing i could be fine tomorrow, no one says i will get worse whitin the 4months u know..

 

I know a person who recovered after 10 months so i just think that can also be me :) hehe

GOODLUCK my friend!
 


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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Bellisimo

Hi Bellisimo

 

I have read your story and my goodness, what a story.

 

You have been through much and yet, your story is so inspirational. Your 10 tips for getting through withdrawal are brilliant. I'm going to write those down.

 

I've noticed you've posted in other peoples threads and it seems you are getting better! That's fantastic!! It's a huge source of comfort to me and, I'm sure, to many others.

 

Keep walking through, brave lady.

Thanks! When i wrote this i was in a REALLY bad wave what i have learnt now after reading alot on this site lol.

What i didnt know by then is two things that i thought i knew.

 

1. It gets harder each year ( this ive learnt is individual, for me it felt it got worsé for each year

2. About suppliments, ive learnt now my body cant tolerate things, so each person have to try and see what they can tolerate themselves during this period. Im very sensitivt to food and suppliments now days. the other tips i stick with ;)


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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WinningThrough

Thanks Bella. You're a huge inspiration to me x


The only way out is through.

 

Aug 2013 - Augmentin leading to akathisia

Sept-Nov 2013 - Citalopram 20mg, severe reaction, off at 5mg. Valium 4mg, prn

Oct 2013 - 5 zopiclone tablets, 7.5mg

End Nov 2013-end Feb 2014, Seroquel, top dose 150mg, off at 25mg

End Nov 2013-early march 2014, Zoloft 100mg top dose, off at 25mg

End Dec-2013-early April 2014, lorazepam 1mg prn

April 3rd 2014 zoloft 5mg for a few days. 18/4/14 - zoloft, 1mg. Came off at 0.35 mg,14th June 2014

29 June 2014 - 1mg lorazepam, last ever

29 June 2014 - med free

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Bellisimo

Im glad if i have helped you in any way or given you support.

 

Today its 9months now since i took my last pill, crazy 9 months, never believed i could get here


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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Jose

Hello Jose

 

Welcome here and thanks for sharing your story. I wish you all good luck and i will pray for you to (yes i have become half religious during my last months , i wasnt before)

 

Bella, thanks for your prayers.

It's the feeling of urgency that is most hard to withstand, at least in my case. On the days that I feel worse I get this rush of urgency, of imminent end, painful regret about any memory that hits the mind.

The antidote I am using is, as I mentioned, paying attention to my own breathing and the sensations in my body first, and then try to visualize myself some months after, reassured, feeling full of energy and relieved from this gripping shadow. Then again the determination to build my own coping mechanisms without the drugs works like an engine that feeds the positive vision forward.

Once one frees oneself of the paralysis everything becomes so much better, although it is so hard to recognize this when you're hijacked by your shadows.

So, lack of paralysis means activity and vitality, and vitality and activity are the opposite of depression. That's where I'm heading to.

My best wishes to you too, Bella, you're a long way through, doesn't matter whether it's 10 or 12 months for you because it's not algebra it's a living thing building up, and you have already laid strong roots.

Keep in touch. Jose


1999-2004 citalopram 10 to 20mg with 2-3 withdrawal attempts.
2004 fluvoxamine for 4-5 months aprox. Changed to venlafaxine because of the headaches and dizziness.
2005-March 2014 venlafaxine usually starting on 150mg and coming down to 75 or 37.5. Several withdrawal attempts.
In March 2014 I stopped taking 37.5mg of venlafaxine without tapering.

Went through 5 months of confusion, anxiety, insomnia and desperation. From then I am very slowly recovering, on windows and waves.

Symptoms: muscle stiffness and aches, shortness of breath, abdominal pain, memory loss, inability to concentrate or think straight, difficulty to speak, difficulty to read (improving).

Taking omega3, magnesium, calcium, vitamin E and probiotics.

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Bellisimo

aw thanks Jose, yes i have like changed my life a lot since i started to suffer from this.

i have passed 9 months mark now and i hope i just get better and better for each month

 

I wish you all the best aswell, keep me updated how you are doing ,


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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Bellisimo

Hello Jose

 

How are you doing?

 

I feel really happy that my reading passion has come back a bit now, before i took medicine i read every book i could find lol then i lost that during medication and only now 9 months after last pill ive got these huge taste for books again, feels SO GOOD! =D


2007 - 2013: was on citalopram (tried to quit a few times, never worked, always went back on. max dose 40mg)

2012-2013: was tapering my citalopram all down to 2,5 mg then quit.
2013/aug: Took  my last pill 

W/D hit me bad after a few weeks off my medicine.

2014/August: 12 months off (much improved)

2015/April: 20months off. ( much improved, still some symtoms comes in waves, but not so intense.)

2015/june: 22months off. FELT different than before, all shakings suddenly stopped, feel much better. a fantastic feeling!

2016/Feb : 2 years and 6 months off, END of my suffering. I feel perfectly fine and back to normal. 
2018/Oct: Iam still feeling great. It is hard to believe my own story when I read back, what I went through!

 

 

 

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bubble

Re reading which I also (used to) love, when I was suffering badly I found myself only being able to read A. Christie (who I can't read at all when I'm well)

 

So reading and what I can read is definitely a measure of my recovery :) 


Current: Xanax 0.26 (down from 2 mg in 2013), Lexapro 2.85 mg (down from 5 mg 2013)

Amitriptyline (tricyclic AD) and clonazepam for 3 months to treat headache in 1996 
1999. - present Xanax prn up to 3 mg.
2000-2005 Prozac CT twice, 2005-2010 Zoloft CT 3 times, 2010-2013 Escitalopram 10 mg
went from 2.5 to zero on 7 Aug 2013, bad crash 40 days after
reinstated to 5 mg Escitalopram 4Oct 2013 and holding liquid Xanax every 5 hours
28 Jan 2014 Xanax 1.9, 18 Apr  2015 1 mg,  25 June 2015 Lex 4.8, 6 Aug Lexapro 4.6, 1 Jan 2016 0.64  Xanax     9 month hold

24 Sept 2016 4.5 Lex, 17 Oct 4.4 Lex (Nov 0.63 Xanax, Dec 0.625 Xanax), 1 Jan 2017 4.3 Lex, 24 Jan 4.2, 5 Feb 4.1, 24 Mar 4 mg, 10 Apr 3.9 mg, May 3.85, June 3.8, July 3.75, 22 July 3.7, 15 Aug 3.65, 17 Sept 3.6, 1 Jan 2018 3.55, 19 Jan 3.5, 16 Mar 3.4, 14 Apr 3.3, 23 May 3.2, 16 June 3.15, 15 Jul 3.1, 31 Jul 3, 21 Aug 2.9 26 Sept 2.85, 14 Nov Xan 0.61, 1 Dec 0.59, 19 Dec 0.58, 4 Jan 0.565, 6 Feb 0.55, 20 Feb 0.535, 1 Mar 0.505, 10 Mar 0.475, 14 Mar 0.45, 4 Apr 0.415, 13 Apr 0.37, 21 Apr 0.33, 29 Apr 0.29, 10 May 0.27, 17 May 0.25, 28 May 0.22, 19 June 0.22, 21 Jun updose to 0.24, 24 Jun updose to 0.26

Supplements: Omega 3 + Vit E, Vit C, D, magnesium, Taurine, probiotic 

I'm not a medical professional. Any advice I give is based on my own experience and reading. 

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Jose

Hello Jose

 

How are you doing?

 

I feel really happy that my reading passion has come back a bit now, before i took medicine i read every book i could find lol then i lost that during medication and only now 9 months after last pill ive got these huge taste for books again, feels SO GOOD! =D

 

Hello Bella

Really glad you got a passion back. Enjoy every bit of it.

I'm doing ok, ups and downs but cruising through. Already past two months and counting.

My reading ability is slightly impaired now so I'm looking forward to the gradual recovery like bubble mentions.

I'll be around...Best to you all


1999-2004 citalopram 10 to 20mg with 2-3 withdrawal attempts.
2004 fluvoxamine for 4-5 months aprox. Changed to venlafaxine because of the headaches and dizziness.
2005-March 2014 venlafaxine usually starting on 150mg and coming down to 75 or 37.5. Several withdrawal attempts.
In March 2014 I stopped taking 37.5mg of venlafaxine without tapering.

Went through 5 months of confusion, anxiety, insomnia and desperation. From then I am very slowly recovering, on windows and waves.

Symptoms: muscle stiffness and aches, shortness of breath, abdominal pain, memory loss, inability to concentrate or think straight, difficulty to speak, difficulty to read (improving).

Taking omega3, magnesium, calcium, vitamin E and probiotics.

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mlrp

Hello, Bella,

 

Just taking a moment to introduce myself and say that I wish you well on your recovery journey. You are a brave, brave person!

 

Nearly every intro thread I read has so many experiences in common with what I have been going through, if I were to comment on them all, I would be online 24/7.

 

I will chime in a bit on reading. WhenI was going through my "breakdown,"  during the acute anorexic/agoraphobic insomnia stage, about the only thing I could manage to do was watch (wait for it) Marie Osmond's talk show and read her books. I was an Osmond fan a million years ago when I was a teen, but even I didn't get the connection at first. Something in her spirit just comforted me. I know she has been through a lot of personal turmoil herself, and I just happen to think she's genuine (in her own Las Vegas way) - but that's my opinion, of course. I didn't realize it at the time, but I think I was also looking for a mother figure - being in the midst of losing my own (false image of) mother in a very dramatic, traumatic way - and Marie fit the bill. I still get emotional thinking about how she helped keep me going through months of absolute Hell. OK, I meant this to be a light-hearted addition to the topic of reading and depression/anxiety, and somehow ended up "sharing" something a little deeper than that. I'll post anyway, because I feel among friends who understand here. So, thank you.

 

I am here for you, too. In thoughts and prayers.


04/2013 diagnoses: severe insomnia, major depressive disorder, anxiety disorder, agoraphobia. PTSD (my diagnosis)

Original scripts: 30 mg mirtazapine (Remeron) (1x day), 75 mg Bupropion HCL (Wellbutrin) (2x day), and 0.5 lorazepam (1x day or as needed)

05/05/14: Onset of acute Wellbutrin withdrawal symptoms after haphazard "taper" of 6-8 wks.

05/10/14: Joined this site.

05/11/14: Reinstated approx. 25 mg Wellbutrin (1x day)

05/14/14: Switched to 12.5 mg Wellbutrin (2x day)

06/28/14: Changed lorazepam dosing to .25 mg 2x a day - seems to be reducing anxiety flare-ups

07/28/14: Dosing Wellbutrin in a (home made) solution form 12.5 mg (2x day) 08/15/14: Remeron 28 25.2 22.7 20.5 18.5 16.7 15.1 13.6 mg (home made) solution

05/16/15: Have been dosing lorazepam at .5 mg in the morning, .25 mg in the afternoon, and .25 mg at bedtime. Anxiety has increased somewhat, possibly due to tolerance.

 

 

 

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