Jump to content

Didimar: Hello...


didimar

Recommended Posts

Hello,

 

Today I have finally gathered the courage to introduce myself. I've been reading posts and going through forms on this website for a while now. I have actually been taking anti-depressants for a long time. I started with paxil and the ever-present assurances that this was non-habit forming, etc. etc.   The REAL problem was that I had gone through surgical menopause, my body was not adapting well to synthetic hormones and I was understandably sad about learning I wouldn't be able to have children - only one year after getting married. I just needed someone to talk to and help me process all my feelings. But everyone was pushing antidepressants because they were quick and no, not addictive.

 

The paxil was way too strong and the side effects were horrible. But anytime I would try to switch to another AD, I would get really sick. It was pretty clear to me that getting off Paxil was the problem, but my doctor scoffed at the idea.  Anyway, with the exception of a few short time periods, I've been on AD's ever since. Several months ago, I found the post about how to make a liquid solution of celexa for a slow taper. I started reading through this website, and finally, last month I worked up the nerve to try. I guess it's been a month now. In hindsight, it was probably not the best time to start it because this is a horrible allergy season. So, not only did I get allergies, but they have been compounded by the the "flu-like" symptoms of withdrawals. People keep wondering why I haven't been to a doctor, but I know that it won't make a difference....

 

I'm still physically ill, but I think it's the withdrawal. And today was the first day that I think I've really had the "emotional" aspect of withdrawal show up. A co-worker and I had a disagreement, and I think if I were in a better state, I would have handled it better. I don't really think I was in the wrong, but sometimes it's better just to let things go. And today I didn't. But it's not the end of the world, and the situation will clear up in time. But I decided I might start posting on this board. Some support would be good.

 

Anyway, I'm just starting, and this first "taper" will be the biggest I ever do. I will probably wait another week before I try another taper...

 

That's all for now.

Didimar

Spring 1996– Started 20 mg Paxil

Spring 1997 – Quit Paxil cold turkey due to side effects

Fall 1997 - St. John's wort didn't help.

Spring 1998 - Tried 5-HTP. Elevated mood and weight loss, but quickly stopped working. 

Spring 1999 – Gave in; started 20 mg Celexa.

Spring 1999 to Fall 2013 –  (Celexa/Lexapro/Prozac/Celexa/Zoloft&Wellbutrin/Celexa) 

                                                 Several unsuccessful attempts to stop but withdrew too quickly; always returned to celexa                     

Fall 2013 -Celexa 30 mg.

April 8, 2014 – 27 mg celexa.

May 12, 2014 - 24.4 mg. celexa

May 31, 2014 - 22 mg. celexa

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello didimar--

 

Welcome!

 

Your story is sadly very typical. I'm so sorry you got caught in the psych drug merry-go-round trap.

 

Given your history with multiple meds and multiple attempts to stop and having to go back on each time, as well as a many-year history on the drugs, you are probably (as you are finding) especially sensitive to changes in med dosages. You've done great starting with the 10% cut, though, and if you hold a while you'll find that those withdrawal symptoms will settle down. There's nothing wrong with holding until you feel pretty good.

 

Especially when first starting a taper, it's a good idea to really take your time and get a good feel for how the pattern of symptoms comes on, waxes and wanes and waxes and wanes, and eventually fades away. This is going to be a long term project, so take your time and really get to know how your body deals with withdrawal. Once you get used to your own personal patterns of withdrawal it will be easier to plan your cuts and adjust the taper according to other things happening in your life.

 

Please keep a daily journal ranking your symptoms on a numerical scale, say 1 to 5 or something. If you keep this journal over time it will be easier to see the patterns. Our subjective memory of withdrawal (how we get sick and how we recover) appears to be distorted by the withdrawal process, so having something written down is really valuable to look back on.

 

Welcome, glad you're here, and good luck to you! Keep us posted. You'll get lots of support here.

Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hello, Didimar-

 

Welcome to the forum. You have my sympathy re the allergies. It was fall, my worst allergy season, when I began experiencing withdrawal from cutting Lexapro too fast, and I thought it was just a hellish allergy season for quite a few weeks before figuring out what was really going on and finding this forum.

 

I'm glad to see that you're being sensible and going about tapering slowly and carefully. As Rhi says, do what's comfortable for you. Don't be ashamed to updose a bit if the withdrawal symptoms come on strong after a cut in dosage. The idea is to be able to function reasonably well and feel reasonably well throughout your taper, not to get the drug out of your system as fast as possible. The brain changes in antidepressant use and it takes quite a while for it to right itself: hence, the slow, gradual withdrawal which gives the brain time to adjust to lesser dosages.

 

I'm glad you found us.  You'll find lots of solid information and friendly support here.

 

 

Psychotropic drug history: Pristiq 50 mg. (mid-September 2010 through February 2011), Remeron (mid-September 2010 through January 2011), Lexapro 10 mg. (mid-February 2011 through mid-December 2011), Lorazepam (Ativan) 1 mg. as needed mid-September 2010 through early March 2012

"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." -Hanlon's Razor


Introduction: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/1588-introducing-jemima/

 

Success Story: http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/6263-success-jemima-survives-lexapro-and-dr-dickhead-too/

Please note that I am not a medical professional and my advice is based on personal experience, reading, and anecdotal information posted by other sufferers.

 

Link to comment

Thank you for the positive responses. It is nice to know that someone out there might understand how hard this is for me. I did go to the doctor yesterday because my friends kept saying I should. I told the doctor that Sunday night I got a very severe attack of chills (extreme shivers, etc.) for about an hour. My husband had to heap blankets on me and my son made hot tea for me which I could hardly hold due to my shivering hands. It cleared up in about an hour and I was fine. But it was kind of scary since it was 89 degrees outside and there was no reason for me to get a chill.

 

This information kind of worried the doctor, who could find nothing wrong with me (other than allergies and a bad cough that seemed to be allergy related.) I finally told her that I thought it might be because I had gone from 30 mg of celexa to 27 mg of celexa. She laughed and said, "No, that can't be it."  Then, later, she laughed again about my small taper, saying, "We usually tell patients to go from 30 to 20."

 

So it was nice to come on line today and read positive responses from people who understand.

 

I downloaded and made several copies of Dr. Glenmullen's checklist of Withdrawal Symptoms and I plan to complete one daily. It gives me hope that this could actually work. 

 

One thing I learned last week is that I definitely cannot drink ANY alcohol. I'm not a big drinker or even socializer, for that matter. It just so happened that I met out at a restaurant with friends on two separate nights and had a drink. I really ended up paying for it as my allergies definitely got worse after that. So, no more alcohol. That won't really be a problem, though.

 

I have noticed that I am waking up an hour early these days (when I used to sleep through the alarm.) I think the sleep problems are the ones I am dreading the most. But for now, it's not bad at all. I took a walk last night and that helped me fall asleep. I hope to walk again tonight. For now, I am just waiting for my allergies to quiet down a bit. (Maybe one more week) And I will taper again. I don't expect this to be too hard until I reach 20 mg and start tapering from there. Because 20 mg has been the dose I've taken for the longest.

 

Anyway, it's nice to know you guys are out there.

Didimar

Spring 1996– Started 20 mg Paxil

Spring 1997 – Quit Paxil cold turkey due to side effects

Fall 1997 - St. John's wort didn't help.

Spring 1998 - Tried 5-HTP. Elevated mood and weight loss, but quickly stopped working. 

Spring 1999 – Gave in; started 20 mg Celexa.

Spring 1999 to Fall 2013 –  (Celexa/Lexapro/Prozac/Celexa/Zoloft&Wellbutrin/Celexa) 

                                                 Several unsuccessful attempts to stop but withdrew too quickly; always returned to celexa                     

Fall 2013 -Celexa 30 mg.

April 8, 2014 – 27 mg celexa.

May 12, 2014 - 24.4 mg. celexa

May 31, 2014 - 22 mg. celexa

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Don't give your doctor's reaction too much weight. They often don't really know much about withdrawal. Your body is the expert. Don't push it. Don't make another cut until you've been feeling well for at least a week. 

 

Meanwhile I'd highly recommend getting your hands on a copy of Anatomy of an Epidemic by Robert Whitaker, to help understand why your doctor is so ill-informed about withdrawal and about the downside of psych meds in general.

Started on Prozac and Xanax in 1992 for PTSD after an assault. One drug led to more, the usual story. Got sicker and sicker, but believed I needed the drugs for my "underlying disease". Long story...lost everything. Life savings, home, physical and mental health, relationships, friendships, ability to work, everything. Amitryptiline, Prozac, bupropion, buspirone, flurazepam, diazepam, alprazolam, Paxil, citalopram, lamotrigine, gabapentin...probably more I've forgotten. 

Started multidrug taper in Feb 2010.  Doing a very slow microtaper, down to low doses now and feeling SO much better, getting my old personality and my brain back! Able to work full time, have a full social life, and cope with stress better than ever. Not perfect, but much better. After 23 lost years. Big Pharma has a lot to answer for. And "medicine for profit" is just not a great idea.

 

Feb 15 2010:  300 mg Neurontin  200 Lamictal   10 Celexa      0.65 Xanax   and 5 mg Ambien 

Feb 10 2014:   62 Lamictal    1.1 Celexa         0.135 Xanax    1.8 Valium

Feb 10 2015:   50 Lamictal      0.875 Celexa    0.11 Xanax      1.5 Valium

Feb 15 2016:   47.5 Lamictal   0.75 Celexa      0.0875 Xanax    1.42 Valium    

2/12/20             12                       0.045               0.007                   1 

May 2021            7                       0.01                  0.0037                1

Feb 2022            6                      0!!!                     0.00167               0.98                2.5 mg Ambien

 

I'm not a doctor. Any advice I give is just my civilian opinion.

Link to comment
  • Moderator Emeritus

Hi Didimar,

Your body/nervous system has had a long time to get adjusted to these drugs, so please take your time in getting off them.  Listen to what your body is telling you, not your doctor.  I agree with Rhi about getting a copy of that book.

 

I've experienced chills as part of my withdrawal process, they were much worse at first, not so bad now, but I tapered too fast and have protracted withdrawal, if you taper slow enough, you should be able to avoid serious or long term symptoms.  Generally, what we advise is that if you are getting symptoms, you are going too fast and need to slow down.

 

Petu.

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

 

 

 

Link to comment

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Use Privacy Policy