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Hello all,


I am very happy to be able to share with the world part of my issues. In the hope that these words may help someone, I think it is worth taking the effort and time to type it down.

I was born and bread somewhere in Transylvania in a happy family with lots of friends and people around me. During my childhood I spent my time building things and interacting with kids. None of this social media nonsense kids spend time on nowadays.

I married an Australian and move to Adelaide in 2001. I left parents and friends behind. Started everything from scratch, including learning a new language.

Changing cultures and languages is NOT beneficial most of the times from a comfort point of view. In 2006 I started a driving instructing business. From that point on my health spiralled down. Sitting 12hrs in a car and stressing with my novice clients while under pressure from the idiots on the road, soon made my blood pressure reach the limits of normal. I ignored it.

Around Easter 2013 I had 2 episodes of massive unbearrable headaches which landed me in the ER.

The doctors suspected a stroke both times. First time hey did a CT scan but were not sure of the result. They wanted a spinal lumbar puncture. I knew the risks but decided to go on with it. After a horrible sickening experience the result was no stroke or some signs of blood in the sample taken which could have been a very minor stroke or contamination from the needle on the way in the spine. A few days later again massive headaches. I continued to have all these panic attacks in the middle of the night. Again ER. CT scan with dye. Specialist neurologist. All ok.

I took 3 days off work to recover. Before these issues, I used to drink coffee, energy drinks, coke, sleep late and wake up early. I would scold a redbull and sleep like a baby. Wake up early, work like a machine 6 days a week and 12hrs a day.

While at home during the 3 days I decided to play Call of Duty on a 27" pc screen.

I remember vividly how while playing this game I got so dizzy, I go up and looked out the window to recover.

No matter what I did I could not recover to normal. I thought if I sleep I will be ok. From that day on, my hell began. Continuous dizziness. I hate typing that word as i researched it for months on end. That's how I learnt about vertigo and how to fix it, functions of cerebellum, diseases of the brain etc. My only refuge was sleep. The only time when things were stable. I got so worried that I will no longer be able to perform my career. I was gonna loose the job, the house, kids won't go to a private school etc. Things got worse. Unable to find understanding at doctors i turned to natural remedies. I seen so many doctors here in Australia as well as in Romania, from GP to specialists and surgeons. No one had any idea what my dizziness was about. My poor GP tried everything. I took Stamatil for vertigo and did nothing. I took so many medications and it did not make any difference. I then got into fish oil, krill oil. My heart was going crazy. I was having panic attacks every few minutes. While waiting at the lights in the car, thoughts of harm would come into my head. Heart going into panic mode.

I took to the heart specialists...any possible test was done. Then i took to the kidney, neuro, i even paid for my own MRI scan, ET specialists. I forget now how many types of doctors and medications I tried. I was given Arcoxia which made me nearly impossible to walk.

Then the worst happened. Anxiety struck me bad along with depression. I will only say that everything round me was hell. I lost my sense of peace, sudden fear was repeatedly hitting me every few minutes, my thoughts were only on my bad state, my kids meant nothing for me bringing no happiness, i was in the constant need to hug my wife. I was constantly seeking company otherwise i was very afraid of my surroundings. From a guy that would come home at lunch and watch YouTube or a movie, I was now scared and so down to sit on my own, I had to have someone next to me. Suicidal thoughts were my only company. I didn't tell anybody afraid to not be ridiculed and locked up. My psychologist said to me that if I have any harming thoughts she has the authority to call the cops and ambulance and have me locked up. I didn't mention anything about it. By this stage all the doctors found nothing wrong with me but most of them noticed very high blood pressure and anxiety. The psychology lessons did NOTHING for me. I would suggest you try a counsellor or a mature person that can listen and understand you rather than a pseudo scientist called psychologist. It made it worse.

I was having heart palpitations, massive headaches, sharp pains behind the head even with blood pressure medication.

All until one day I went to see a GP. I described how I was going for the millionth time, repeated the tests again, all perfect. One day I could no longer function, my brain had it. I was an emotional, psychological wreck. I needed help and FAST.

That's how I got introduced to Cymblta.

I will relate the story next time as it's a bit late now, I need to go to sleep.

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  • Moderator Emeritus

Welcome Vedivici,

Thank you for sharing the first part of your story, I look forward to hearing more. Are you currently still taking Cymbalta?

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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  • Moderator Emeritus

Hey Vedivici - what a journey!


I can so relate to leaving your country - I left the USA in 2002 and arrived in Australia.  But I was lulled by the language - I thought - "they speak English here!" and thought I would get along fine!  It was very difficult to leave the house - and especially to drive in this foreign country!  I hated my husband's van, and it took about a year before I had a car of my own.  That helped, but these goat track roads were a special form of torture to me!  It took me 2-4 years before I began to make friends and have a life of my own here.  Even so, I'm "the yank" - an outsider.  And Queenslanders are not as friendly as I originally thought.  Very insular, less engaging, than I am accustomed to.


That you came, into a new language - and then started a DRIVING SCHOOL - is an astonishment to me!  (at one time I thought that in order to overcome my fear of Aussie roads - I should become a courier - was met with appalled shock from my treatment team.  NOT a good idea, I learned!)


I looked up Statamil - oh my.  A very strong neuroleptic.  Like the great grandchild of Largactil (chlorpromazine) only bigger, taller, faster with superpowers!


But your problem started before the drugs.  Like a stress-induced meltdown, so difficult to stop!  This makes unravelling your knot especially difficult.  Where does the pain end, and the drugs begin?  It may be something as simple as a nutritional deficiency - Niacin, B6, B12, Zinc, Magnesium, all of these have cardiovascular effects.  Or it may be that some stressor in your life has become overwhelming.  I know it was difficult for me to leave my homeland and adjust to the new land.  I gravely underestimated the stress that induced - and it was even more difficult for you, being a man, having to make a living, and adjusting to the Aussie language.


And your Aussie wife, is she understanding and supportive?  Does she help you as you struggle?  It is so important to have support anytime you plan to change your psych drugs.  Have you been able to make friends of your own in the new country?  Or are your friends - her friends?  It's harder for men to make new friends, I think - "mates" are formed as a guy goes to school, plays sports, or joins the armed forces.  Proximity makes mates, and men are so much less likely to "do coffee" to talk over their woes.


I'd also be curious (this is idle curiosity, not vital stuff) as to your insights as to how Aussie-land is better than home, or where it falls short of your expectations?  I hear Adelaide is a beautiful city, with WOMAD-alaide coming regularly, plenty of culture - but also a nice "small town" feel.  This is just hearsay, I've never been.


I'm guessing you are no longer on the Statamil, that you are on Cymbalta?  


I look forward to the next installment of your story - and welcome to SA.  At some point, when you have time, please put your recent med history in your signature.   How to complete your Signature   


When we have a better picture of your situation, we'll be able to offer better suggestions.


Welcome to SA!

"Easy, easy - just go easy and you'll finish." - Hawaiian Kapuna


Holding is hard work, holding is a blessing. Give your brain time to heal before you try again.


My suggestions are not medical advice, you are in charge of your own medical choices.


A lifetime of being prescribed antidepressants that caused problems (30 years in total). At age 35 flipped to "bipolar," but was not diagnosed for 5 years. Started my journey in Midwest United States. Crossed the Pacific for love and hope; currently living in Australia.   CT Seroquel 25 mg some time in 2013.   Tapered Reboxetine 4 mg Oct 2013 to Sept 2014 = GONE (3 years on Reboxetine).     Tapered Lithium 900 to 475 MG (alternating with the SNRI) Jan 2014 - Nov 2014, tapered Lithium 475 mg Jan 2015 -  Feb 2016 = GONE (10 years  on Lithium).  Many mistakes in dry cutting dosages were made.

The tedious thread (my intro):  JanCarol ☼ Reboxetine first, then Lithium

The happy thread (my success story):  JanCarol - Undiagnosed  Off all bipolar drugs

My own blog:  https://shamanexplorations.com/shamans-blog/



I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!

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