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Adiip

☼ Adiip: I hope I can help and be helped, emotional anaesthesia/numbness

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Adiip

Hi, my name is Adrian, I am a 35 year old male from Australia.

 

My story is about emotional numbness/anhedonia, but first here's a bit about me.

 

PLEASE READ THIS, because I am proof you can recover from prescription withdrawal.

 

I was taking Xanax for years, since I was 17 for about 5 years, and a lot! about 10mg a day.  I quit over the course of a month and went into severe withdrawal, had every symptom in the book, and I mean EVERY!!! recovered over 4 years and continued to get better over the next 10.  Went on to own my own business, became an international edcator, exercise freak running 11k a day. YOU CAN RECOVER, AND YOU WILL.

 

But this is not the story.

 

1 year ago I pushed things way to hard, exercised and dieted too much, took on too much with work, and one day I snapped. Started having panic attacks every day, the fatigue got very bad and I had to stop work for almost 3 months. Didnt want medication so I kept fighting getting nowhere.  The emotional numbness was starting to set in for moments, but it scared me and sent me into another panic attack and so the snowball began.

 

Took a better blocker propranolol, all it did was make me completely emotionally numb, which would wear off when the medication wore off.

 

Took ativan and klonopin, had adverse reactions to them (probably as a result of my previous history with meds and withdrawal)

 

Started taking citalopram, became extremely fatigued, walking off balance (I think afer previous meds and withdrawal you become hyper sensitive to more meds) so I tapered off after 6 weeks.

 

Thats when the emotional numbness completely set in. Cant feel a thing, almost no emoton, no physical sensation to things like massage.

 

Every few days, if I do positive thinking and talk to myself or go out for walks and smell flowers, and tell myself its just my body's way of protecting itself, I get a rush of adrenaline and im less numb than before.

 

This brings me to the conclusion that the emotional numbness is your body's way of healing, don't be frightened of it!

If I focus on it it gets a lot worse, ive had periods of feeling ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!  If I talk to myself and tell my self thats its ok, I start to feel a little bit better.

 

I feel that my physical symptoms are going away with the numbness.

My burning and tingling feet are healing, my fatigue is lifting, no more headaches (the tension headaches were every day and I could hardly open my eyes)

 

I am keen to hear feedback from others, and I would like to provide others with hope and insight.

 

I have been able to reurn to work and move on with my life.

 

Don't underestimate your body and brain, it will do what it needs to to get you better, and if that means shutting off your emotions for a time it will!

 

The brain is very adaptable, during my first withdrawal and recovery, the more I looked at my symptoms as signs of recover the quicker I got better.

 

I power walked every day, and yes, it started as not even being able to get to the end of the street and back and then sleeping for hours, but it ended up at running a kilometer in under 4 mins and doing marathons!

 

I know this post is all over the place but I have a lot to say, and I am a survivor, and I want to continue to survive, so anyone with stories of recover or insight into emotional numbness please correspond with me.

 

Love to you all.

 

P.s who is Allostrata? (spelling sorry!) what an inspiring person.


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Fresh

G'day Maaate , welcome to SA , waving at you from Sydney.

 

Well done for living through what you have , and then for sharing it with us here.   People always like to hear about others who have been able to stop taking a benzo

or antidepressant successfully.

 

What you describe that happened a year ago is all too familiar  - you go to the doctor about something and they're usually very quick to write a script.   The fact that your reactions to Ativan and klonepin  , then citalopram were adverse suggest to me also that your cns has become sensitized to a lot of meds , and you will need to be very careful what you take for many years to come. 

 

When you started having panic attacks a year ago , they may have been triggered by something like antibiotics , nasal sapray , asthma meds , or even nutritional supplements.   Had you added anything particular when you were "exercising and dieting too much"?  

It may even have been from the stress at work.  

 

You might try looking in the Symptoms and Self Care section . . . depersonalization.

 

Once again , welcome aboard.

 

Fresh


1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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Adiip

I went vegan and my anxiety went through the roof! I have been very sensitive to nasal spray and antibiotics and b12 and everything! Coffee, the bloody works! But I think it was the compound of everything that tipped me over the edge. Meds definately revv up my system though, a lot!


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Fresh

Absolutely understandable.    If your genes that metabolize all these substance are stuffed (compromised)   you could be triggered by any of them.  

They become toxic for you.

 

From your description , and my own experience (see my intro. , post 1), I suspect that things were beginning to ramp up a while before the first panic

attack last year.

When you started exercising too much , feeling stressed at work , etc ,   you were starting to have symptoms of the same episode that culminated in

panic attacks.

Just a thought.

 

Glad you found your way here.   Others will be along to offer support , information and suggestions soon enough.

 

Are you following this topic?

 

:)  Fresh


1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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Adiip

Things were definately getting pretty odd, your right. Was having disequilibrium spells, getting obsessed, getting very tired! Then used an ear drop and it made me very angry! Then a few weeks later, wham! I ant figure out how to follow this post on mobile but will do it on the computer when I get home :)


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Adiip

The funny thing is, since withdrawal I have had numerous operations and taken antibiotics with no problem, that's why I think it's the combination of stress AND the meds, 1 plus 1 equals BANG! lol


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Petunia

Welcome Adiip,

Thank you for sharing your inspiring story and for writing such an encouraging introduction post, reading it made me feel more hopeful about my own situation, I'm in protracted withdrawal and have been having problems with exercise, I sometimes get scared I wont ever be able to work out like I used to.

 

I agree with Fresh, that it was most likely a combination of factors which brought on the panic attacks.  The physical stress from too much exercise and diet changes, the emotional stress from too much work, the nervous system can only take so much stress before it reaches its limit, then it will start sending out warning signals, hoping to get our attention so we will make some changes in our life.

 

Unfortunately, many of us ignore those signals and try and shut them out with drugs so we can continue living life the way we want to.  In your case, it seems like you had an adverse reaction to them, possibly because you had been sensitized from your prior experience.

 

I like your theory that being emotionally shut down is our body's way of protecting us from more stress, so that we have a chance to recover.  Excitement, joy and intense happiness can feel overwhelming to a sensitized nervous system,  just like the more negative emotions can.

 

I'm sure you will recover in time, as long as you make some changes in your life and learn how to reduce stress and take better care of yourself.  It can take a while for anhedonia to go away, but it does eventually.  We have a topic about it here:

 

http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/2873-anhedonia-apathy-demotivation/

 

Have a look through our symptoms and self care section for ways to support recovery, especially read the topics pinned at the top.

 

Please would you put your drug and withdrawal history in your signature.  Putting a short version of your drug and tapering history in your signature helps people understand your context, it appears below each of your posts.  Here are instructions for how to do it:

 

http://survivinganti...your-signature/

 

You can use this thread as your ongoing journal to track progress, write about symptoms, ask questions and communicate with the community, add to it whenever you want.  I'm glad you found us.

 

Petunia.

 

 


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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Adiip

Thanks Petunia, signature done! And cute apple :)

 

Life is about learning, I didnt listen the first time and I am a firm believer that it came back to bite me again...

 

Interestingly, with the emotional numbness I feel strange movement in my head, like muscle movement (even though im fully aware my brain isnt a muscle, but just to describe the feeling)

 

Also, since the numbness took hold, I am physically recovering. Energy is increasing, went from 11 hours sleep down to 8 or 9, and pretty solid.

 

pins needles/neuropathic pain in feet/toes is decreaseing.

 

Dizziness/disequallibrium is almost gone! Chest pain is almost gone.

 

Supports my theory that the brain shuts down so you can heal (im holding on to that one) :blink:

 

I am still scared that all the emotions will come flooding back and ill be back at square one, but I guess thats normal.

 

Positivity is the key! I get out to work every day, I go for walks and smell every single flower I can, I listen to music, do as much as I can to encourage healing, I love life, I try to look at this as a learning experience, and definately a spiritual one.


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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mammaP

Hi Adiip, welcome from me too. You really are a survivor and I bet right now you are kicking yourself for going back to the meds! I'm glad that you are getting better again and hope that you feel back to normal soon. There were some changes in lifestyle that maybe upset things a bit and led to that trip to the doctor. A complete change of diet can take a while for the body to adjust and brain fog, irritability and tiredness can result until the body has adjusted. Heavy exercise and stress added too and it is not long before things go to pot as you have discovered.  I love your positivity and that will be a huge part of your recovery again.  :)


**I am not a medical professional, if in doubt please consult a doctor with withdrawal knowledge.

 

 

Different drugs occasionally (mostly benzos) 1976 - 1981 (no problem)

1993 - 2002 in and out of hospital. every type of drug + ECT. Staring with seroxat

2002  effexor. 

Tapered  March 2012 to March 2013, ending with 5 beads.

Withdrawal April 2013 . Reinstated 5 beads reduced to 4 beads May 2013

Restarted taper  Nov 2013  

OFF EFFEXOR Feb 2015    :D 

Tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg  

 July 2017 30mg.  May 15 2018 25mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, B12, folic acid, bilberry eyebright for eye pressure. 

 

My story http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/4199-hello-mammap-checking-in/page-33

 

Lesson learned, slow down taper at lower doses. Taper no more than 10% of CURRENT dose if possible

 

 

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Fresh

Adiip , I love the apple , it's very cheerful.    Have you found the Australia room yet ?    It's in the relationships section.

 

I have similar beliefs about not being given more than we can handle. 

I've found that the emotional numbness resolves bit by bit , and though it may feel like a flood  at the time ,  it's a flood , not a tsunami.   You won't be sent back to square one.

 

So happy that everything's on the up and up.

 

:)


1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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Adiip

Thanks for the support guys! Just to clarify, I was in a pretty bad way before the Citalopram, I couldn't work or even walk to the end of the street! It was taking the Citalopram, even with the numerous horrid side effects that got me back to work, and now with the emotional numbness, i'm still in a much better way physically and mentally than i was, hate to say it, but it may have been a blessing in disguise.

 

I'll have to check out the Aussie room, although it may get a bit rowdy in there ;)


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Altostrata

Welcome, Adiip.

 

I think your theory is correct, the emotional anesthesia seems to be a way for our nervous systems to limit stimulation.

 

It does sound like you're recovering from your recent setback.

 

In honor of your excellent attitude, I added our cheerful "here comes the sun" symbol



to the title of your Intro topic, to show you're recovering.

Please continue to let us know how you're doing. I hope you will add your story to our Recovery Success Stories eventually!

 

PS I confess to being Altostrata, I founded this site with about 2 dozen others almost exactly 4 years ago.


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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Adiip

Hello lovely Altostrata! I feel like a famous person has replied to my message, anything you type on on the net your name comes up!

 

Such an inspiration to so many and very helpful positive advice, thank you.

 

I feel like the numbness is widening and not such a small void, I know that probably makes very little sense but it's hard to describe.

 

I know a change will happen when I get a strange headache and start to sleep a lot and feel a bit fluey, a bit of anxiety starts which is a welcome change to the numbness.

 

If I wasn't so tired all the time I wouldn't be so bothered, running a business feeling tired is pretty awful.

 

Love and light and lots of healing energy to everyone xx


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Altostrata

Thank you, Adiip.

 

Please visit often and tell us how you're doing.

 

The symptoms will very, very gradually disappear.


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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Adiip

It's been a while since I've updated. I have been working full time running my business which has been quite difficult. Recovery can happen at any time, and happens in stages and great big lumps sometimes! For a couple of weeks I felt quite bad, the emotional numbness, headaches, head pressure, extreme fatigue and pine needles was terrible. Yesterday my brain felt like it was on fire, the head pressure was at an all time high. I'm a hairdresser so how I got through the day was beyond me! Then the symptoms started to fade, slowly during the end of the day, then I felt peaceful, my energy returned and I felt better than I have ever felt during this crazy time! My emotions came back mostly and for a while, they have gone again a bit now but I'm not scared because THE WORSE THE WAVE THE BETTER YOU FEEL AT THE END OF IT. My day yesterday was proof of that so no matter what your experiencing please don't give up hope. The worse you feel now, the better you will feel, thinking this way will make all the difference I promise.

 

The brain burning/rotting feeling was very intense and scary, I felt brain damaged, then it faded, it was weird, it was like something was reconnecting throughout the day then reconnected. Now the wave is back, but at a fraction of what it was before, healing the rest I'm sure.

 

Love to you all, let this be hope to all, you are on this path which seems long and hard, but it will end, everything that has a beginning has an end.


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Fresh

What a positive update , thanks Adiip   :) .  


1987-1997 pertofran , prothiaden , Prozac 1997-2002 Zoloft 2002-2004 effexor 2004-2010 Lexapro 40mg

2010-2012Cymbalta 120mg

Sept. 2012 -decreased 90mg in 6months. Care taken over by Dr Lucire in March 2013 , decreased last 30mg at 2mg per week over 3 months. July 21 , 2013- last dose of Cymbalta

Protracted withdrawal syndrome kicked in badly Jan.2014 Unrelenting akathisia until May 2014. Voluntary hosp. admission. Cocktail of Seroquel, Ativan and mirtazapine and I was well enough to go home after 14 days. Stopped all hosp. meds in next few months.

July 2014 felt v.depressed - couldn't stop crying. Started pristiq 50mg. Felt improvement within days and continued to improve, so stayed on 50mg for 8 months.

Began taper 28 Feb. 2015. Pristiq 50mg down to 45mg. Had one month of w/d symptoms. Started CES therapy in March. No w/d symptoms down to 30mg.

October 2015 , taking 25mg Pristiq. Capsules compounded with slow-release additive.

March 2016 , 21mg

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Adiip

Thanks Fresh, the more I look at this process like a rebirthing the better I feel on the inside :)


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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aberdeen

I love your attitude. Im a Christian and I believe God has wired us perfectly. Ive read a lot about anhedonia (Im a fellow sufferer) and so many report it follows intense stress and anxiety, in my case that stemmed from poop out and a very harsh WD from dropping Effexor too fast. The anxiety was screamingly intense for many months and when it passed I was numb. By then I was on Paxil and have been tapering that for 4 yrs and the anhedonia is making a very very slow gradual improvement, tho at times I dont see it at all. But to believe its our makers way of preventing more stress, much like a cast on a broken bone, is so encouraging and I like to see it that way too. Its scary and hard, I have growing children and feel Im missing out on so much joy and love. But I go thru the motions and it must do something, and for them I pray they dont notice. Now that the weather is nicer I plan to walk more, I feel better in nature. No pressure. I'll check in on you again, and love your approach!


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

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

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

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

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

Paxil taper: dropped 10% every 4-8 weeks

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

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

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

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

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

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Adiip

Hi Aberdeen, I absolutely agree with you. I believe anhedonia and numbness are a protection mode for the brain, always remember the alternative is far worse, I have experienced both. Emotions come back when your body is ready. I tell myself my body is very clever and knows what it's doing, love the way you think, which means you will be ok, you know that innately, I can tell :)


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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aberdeen

Thank you! I see that in you also! I seem to have negative emotions now, they returned first. In the beginning, esp on the full dose of Paxil I  couldnt even feel sad and couldn't cry. Then came anger and the ability to cry and feel sadness (though blunted). I would call that apathy, the absence of all emotions. Anhedonia seems to be more of an absence of the positive ones. Though at times I have seen some improvement, little moments where I feel alive and like "me", memories flood in, positive ones, complete with the wonderful emotions they have, and in those moments I find I have positive emotions in my dreams too.


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

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

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

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

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

Paxil taper: dropped 10% every 4-8 weeks

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

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

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

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

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

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Adiip

That's how it happens, slowly, emotions flashing back and seeing where they fit, then going away so your brain can make room for their final return. I have experienced anhedonia in my previous withdrawal, it took a couple of years to subside and not in a straight line, but slowly and surely came back. If you are experiencing them sometimes, your brain has the ability to have them and that is so fantastic and the best possible news, your brain I constantly in a state of healing, even when it feels it isn't, there are many different states of healing as it is a very complicated machine. The other end of this ordeal is a new and improved you, who is better through experience :)


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Adiip

Also, I found and am finding, the worse the wave of anhedonia or numbness, the bigger 'lump' of healing I got at the end of it, some of those waves were a couple of weeks, some were months, you will be ok, you know that on the inside, you seem very insightful, which in my opinion is the absolutely most important thing in this whole experience.


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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LucaDiProspero

Adiip I'm happy for your recovery, but I have been on an emotional anesthesia from more than five months with NO windows yet. I ask for a day, I ask for an hour of feeling something, but hey nothing changed. One window, only one window to regain some hope. Probably I'm one of the few few people that have ben damaged forever...


March 2010/ October 2010:

Sereupin 30mg a day, EN 15 drops a day

October 2010/ 1st November 2014:

Cipralex 50mg a day (tapered to 40mg a day in August 2013), EN 15 drops a day (switched to Lexotan 15 drops a day in September 2014)

Started Risperdal 1mg a day on the 1st November 2014.

Stopped Risperdal on the 23 November 2014 because that day, after a short mental crysis, I suddenly lost all my emotions,desires,motivation and they not come back yet.

Stopped Cipralex C/T in December 2014.

Added, tapered and stopped other drugs during the following months (also a voluntary hospitalization in January 2015 for a suicide attempt)...no changes yet.

 

 

I'm med free from 3rd December 2015

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Adiip

It will happen, when your brain is ready. When I was having no windows, I made sure I just got on with things. Get out, walk in nature, smell flowers, watch movies, love, have intense conversations and pretend! Fake it til you make it! Your brain is protecting you, don't give it reason too! Remind yourself of how things feel, try hard! My first burst of emotion came after an intense conversation, I made myself cry, and then a flood came for a tiny while. But that was the start, and the start is all you need. Tell yourself I will happen, I still walk around the streets repeating "it will happen, I will heal" you can and will do this, you will NOT be numb forever.


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Adiip

And p.s anaesthesia is not damage, it's your brain shutting down for a break, find the positives in that, trust your body, it will kea you in the right direction.


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Purplestars22

Hey Adip, did you ever get cognitive problems such as brain fog as wd symptoms? If so how did you deal with them?


Celexa 20mg 2008-2012 for Social Anxiety

Failed attempt to stop reinstated

1 year taper skipping doses

Celexa free 12/2013

1/2014-5/2014 took 5 htp every other day

Failed Reinstatement 5mg of Celexa on 12/2014 for 5 days only

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Adiip

Goodness, absolutely! And headaches, burning sensations, pins and needles, bla bla bla. I just get on with it to be honest, I work, I walk a few kilometers every day (despite the hideous fatigue) I just keep going. I think diet is very important for brain fog, but that's different for everyone so I won't go to much into what I eat and don't eat but healthy is important.

 

BUILD IT AND THEY WILL COME

 

Go in the direction of the life you want and your body will follow.


Took 6 - 10mg a day of xanax (and have been on every single ssri) for 5 years at age 17 (now 35)

Rapid taper, major withdrawal, recovered after 4 years.

Great life/career, had breakdown 10 months ago (which felt like acute withdrawal)

Took Citalopram for 6 weeks, hated it, tapered, left with emotional numbness.

STILL LOVE LIFE.

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Purplestars22

Thanks for answering, what an inspiration I hope I and everyone here will follow in your footsteps of recovery.


Celexa 20mg 2008-2012 for Social Anxiety

Failed attempt to stop reinstated

1 year taper skipping doses

Celexa free 12/2013

1/2014-5/2014 took 5 htp every other day

Failed Reinstatement 5mg of Celexa on 12/2014 for 5 days only

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