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Non-drug techniques to cope with emotional symptoms


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#37 Lilu

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Posted 24 March 2015 - 06:45 AM

 

 

I came across this site today and it is very interesting. How writing about feelings is as good as talking.
People who talk about traumas and grief recover faster than those who keep it inside, and writing can be a good outlet
too. http://www.bakadesuy... The Wrong Tree


I wonder if posting on sites like this one is considered talking, or writing? Seems like a hybrid.

 

I think writing on here has helped me lots. I don't really think it matters where you write personally but it's the engagement that is good. It helps to put things into perspective. I kept diaries sporadically and let everything out onto the pages. I wrote letters too, to people who had hurt me but never posted them, just wrote them then burned them. I remember one to my dad, the feeling of the flames eating it up were liberating. That was when I let the abuse go. Didn't forget, you never forget, but writing that letter and burning it let it all go. I keep buying notebooks to write in but since the internet and especially since this forum I don't write on paper any more but still get it out onto the screen. 

 

As for getting off the couch, I have used a timer for years! Watching tv  I get up when the ads come on, and do something. Anything as long as I am moving. I use the timer for cleaning, it is overwhelming when there is so much to do and zero energy or motivation but setting the timer for just 5 minutes means something gets done, and often it is just what is needed to get going and the 5 minutes turns to 10 , 15 etc. I don't stop until the timer goes off but allow myself to stop once the time is up. If I'm up to it I do 5 minutes in each room, if I didn't do it this way nothing would ever get done! 

 

Love the suggestion - a timer! Thanks


2005-2008 Effexor xr; 1/2008 Tapered 3 months, then quit.
7/2008-2009 Reinstated Effexor xr due to crying spells.
2009-3/2013 Switched to Pristiq 50 mg then 100 mg
3/2013 Switched to Lexapro 10mg. Cut down to 5 mg. CT for 2 weeks then reinstated for 6 weeks
8/2013-8/2014 Tapering Lexapro
11/2014 -8/2015: Developed severe insomnia, resumed using Ambien & Klonopin
12/2014-6/2015 Tried Ativan, Lunesta, Sonata, Trazadone, Seroquel, Rameron, Klonopin, Gabapentin
7/2015-1/2016 Reinstated Lexapro 2 mg (mild improvement, but crying spells still present)

9/2015-5/2016 Baclofen 30 mg (muscle relaxant for myoclonus) 

1/2016-5/2017 Lexapro 5 mg (worked well for 1.5 yrs, then depression relapsed.)

5/20/2017 - Now: Lexapro 10 mg 

Intro page: http://survivinganti...rsened-by-meds/


#38 Chemistry

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Posted 20 April 2015 - 02:49 PM

How would you treat someone with very severe anxiety, ocd, depression, without medication? Like they've had it for most of their lives to the point where if they were to not be medicated they would likely self harm or something. What would you suggest as effective treatment to someone like that?

 

Just wondering thanks guys


2010 - citalopram 10mg 
2011 - 20-40mg, 1 month taper, PSSD & Anhedonia - Elavil 10mg during taper.
Clonazepam when needed after a month of daily use. 
2012 - Off Elavil - Zoloft (sertraline) 25mg - 50 mgs for 6 months + Buspar for a while. Pssd & anhedonia improved on zoloft, now has gotten a lot worse since a year off. 

 

Off all drugs since October 2012.


#39 JanCarol

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Posted 14 September 2015 - 06:46 PM

ON DEALING WITH EMOTIONAL SYMPTOMS, a metaphor:

 

Gained while approaching the rugged cliffs on the Northern California coast.

 

You approach the cliff.  It is terrifying.  You can feel the dreadful pull into the raging surf.  You look at the boiling water hundreds of feet below.  Sheer cliffs, sheer terror.  There is no fence or guardrail - it is up to you to take care of yourself.

 

Do you succumb to the overpowering pull that would send you crashing down the cliff and shatter you on the rocks in the raging sea below?  (I see these hidden rocks as those surprises, those hidden traumas that lurk - you know they are there, and they call to you in a destructive way.)

 

No..

 

Do you flee in fear, running to safety far from the dramatic upheaval of the cliffs?  Hide from the fear, never to face it again?

 

No.

 

Instead, go as close to the fear as you can.  When it becomes too much, take one step back - just one - to feel safer.  Drop to your knees, ground, make sure of your safety.  YOU CAN DO THIS.  From your hands and knees, you can crawl closer to that chasm of panic.  You can control how close you get to the dread edge - the end of your very world.  Crawl.  One tiny step of hand, of knee - you may find that you can get very close to the edge of your fear.

 

Then, lie down.  Face your fear.  Look at it.  Look down the cliffs and be amazed.  The wonder, the awesome power of the raging surf, the flight of birds around the floating kelp.  The secret caverns that the surf explores, the rhythm of the ocean against the submerged rocks.  Get to know your cliff.  Become one with it - and yet - you are safe.  You can experience your emotions from a safe place.  The fear will not kill you - but what you do about it makes all the difference.

 

The fear may not subside, but you can control how much of it you take in, if you take time to step back, ground, and do what you need to be safe.  Sometimes that may mean not going out of the house.   Or maybe your cliff is driving the car.  Or seeing or talking to people.  Challenge that fear by finding a safe way - like a child - on your hands and knees - to explore that thing you fear.  Sit in the car without driving it.  Walk around the yard without going anywhere.  Make one phone call to someone safe, someone comfortable.

 

When you go back to the cliff the next time, you may not be as afraid of that abyss.  You may still be filled with horror at the thought of the cliff.  Maybe you cannot get any closer without stepping back, going to your hands and knees, to a place of safety, in order to explore your fear.  But - at least you know what lies beyond the cliff.  And you know that you have the power to control how close or how far away that cliff is.


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#40 KarenB

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Posted 18 September 2015 - 11:08 PM

Beautifully expressed :).  Sometimes I think about making the most of things while we're in this place - such as acquiring an enormous capacity to feel and understand emotions, especially emotions like fear, despair, hopelessness and grief.  I've found depths of myself I wouldn't have dreamed existed prior to all this.  I thought I'd scraped the barrel while coping with childhood sexual abuse and the resultant PTSD.  Turns out there was more...

 

Thanks for writing down your insights - that ocean cliff is a picture I'm going to keep with me. 

 

Hugs,

Karen 


2010 May Fluoxetine 20mg. Raging mostly stops, become more functional.
2011 February Escitalopram 10mg (sudden switch). 2012 January Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Early June Feeling great, decide to taper. Doc advises alternate days 20mg/10mg for 4 weeks.  Late June Steady. Drop to 10mg daily. Early July Not coping, raging, flu symptoms, shaky, anxious, low, spaced-out, self-destructive.  Mid July Return to alternate days 20mg/10mg - minimal improvement. Early August Return to full dose 20mg. Lost.
2014 February Switch to Venlafaxine. (First reduced Esc. to 10mg/day for a week) Feb-April Lost, 'light' self-harm, exhausted.
April Increase Ven. to 150mg/day. Dizzy. July 75mg twice a day to improve dizziness. Deep depression remains.  2015 Feb Vigilant dose spacing partially eases dizziness. Mar Switch to Effexor 75mg 2x/day. May Cut 10% to 135mg - bad w/d 2 mths, held 1 mth.  Aug 1.3% cut - bad 1mth, held 1mth. Oct 4 wkly 0.4% cuts held 6 weeks. Jan 2016 2 wkly 0.4% cuts. 8 month hold. Sept Wkly cuts: 0.5%, 3 1% cuts.  Oct 4 wkly 1% cuts, hold 3-4 weeks.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamins E & C, magnesium, iron, MSM, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.  My story of healing: ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor or counselor; please do your own research and be prepared to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.


#41 scot

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Posted 06 October 2015 - 01:35 AM

Hello all,

some of the usual symptoms of withdrawal syndrome are de-personalization and brain frog.Fortunately I have nothing of them.

However,I have found some info that might be of interest to some of you.There are mostly non-drug treatments,so the harm of using them is very low I think.

 

Depersonalization:Its causes and potential solutions

http://selfhacked.co...tial-solutions/

 

Brain fog:The most common causes and effective treatments

http://selfhacked.co...e-of-brain-fog/



#42 KarenB

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Posted 08 November 2015 - 08:14 PM

I've found that building up as many non-drug tools as possible is the key to managing issues that I had pre-drugs (and were the reasons I initially started SSRIs).

 

I think of it as weaving a held life.  That is, I find a new idea (such as those listed in this topic) that seems like it would suit me.  I write it down and stick it on my wall.  I start to use it in my life, start to build up the habit of it.  Then I go and find another idea, and build this into my life.  Kind of like a bird builds a nest, I'm weaving together a whole bunch of things that will support my healing, and management of my underlying issues (depression, anxiety etc). 

 

One thing by itself may not do much, but the strength from the interwoven parts is greatly comforting and supportive. 

 

Off the top of my head, my 'bits of straw and feathers' have been:  gentle yoga, meditation, counseling, journalling, eating whole foods, fish-oil & vit.E, deepening close friendships, hot baths with epsom salts, getting my hands in the garden, singing, reading here on S/A, resting when tired, having music ready to play in the night, having meals in the freezer, crying when I need to, learning to sit with my emotions, learning to ask my friends for help, drinking heaps of water.

 

And as a bonus, the feeling that comes from knowing I'm actively making healing happen in my life becomes another bit of straw which strengthens the nest. 

 

Hugs to everyone,

KarenB


2010 May Fluoxetine 20mg. Raging mostly stops, become more functional.
2011 February Escitalopram 10mg (sudden switch). 2012 January Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Early June Feeling great, decide to taper. Doc advises alternate days 20mg/10mg for 4 weeks.  Late June Steady. Drop to 10mg daily. Early July Not coping, raging, flu symptoms, shaky, anxious, low, spaced-out, self-destructive.  Mid July Return to alternate days 20mg/10mg - minimal improvement. Early August Return to full dose 20mg. Lost.
2014 February Switch to Venlafaxine. (First reduced Esc. to 10mg/day for a week) Feb-April Lost, 'light' self-harm, exhausted.
April Increase Ven. to 150mg/day. Dizzy. July 75mg twice a day to improve dizziness. Deep depression remains.  2015 Feb Vigilant dose spacing partially eases dizziness. Mar Switch to Effexor 75mg 2x/day. May Cut 10% to 135mg - bad w/d 2 mths, held 1 mth.  Aug 1.3% cut - bad 1mth, held 1mth. Oct 4 wkly 0.4% cuts held 6 weeks. Jan 2016 2 wkly 0.4% cuts. 8 month hold. Sept Wkly cuts: 0.5%, 3 1% cuts.  Oct 4 wkly 1% cuts, hold 3-4 weeks.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamins E & C, magnesium, iron, MSM, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.  My story of healing: ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor or counselor; please do your own research and be prepared to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.


#43 bluebalu86

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Posted 14 November 2015 - 03:03 AM

I find reading and researching about Dialectical Behavior Therapy to be very helpful. It was specifically designed to help emotional dysregulation which happens, but is not limited to, cases such as borderline personality disorder. It's very useful when it comes to dealing with strong and seemingly uncontrollable emotions. I recommend this resource: http://www.bipolarsj... DBT Group.pdf 

There are many others but I don't feel well right now, I'll post them later. 


I suffer from depression, anxiety, pure-o ocd, and panic attacks since 2004. Been on multiple different psychiatric drugs since 2006. Never had a significant WD problem before, only brain zaps for a month and then I'd be fine...............Been on Cipralex (escitalopram) 15 mg and Fluanxol (flupentixol) 1 mg since Sep 2014. Stopped taking the Cipralex after a fast 20-day taper.Took the last 5 mg Cipralex on Feb 5th, 2015. Then took Seroxat (paroxetine) 10 mg for a week, and stopped it too. Severe WD started suddenly on Feb 16th. RI 5 mg Cipralex on Feb 18th, 2015. RI worked and was relatively stable for a while................April 7 - decreased Fluanxol from 1 mg to 0.5 mg and took it at this dose for a week. - BIG MISTAKE; April 13 - WD starts creeping in; April 14 - RI full dose of Fluanxol 1 mg => severe muscle twitching and jerking when trying to relax and fall asleep, overwhelming sense of doom, dread, terror, and horror, insomnia, hoping to stabilize.
Tried doing a 10% cut off Fluanxol in the end of May for a few days, but quickly updosed to full dose because the twitching returned.
Experiencing waves and windows in the following months.
Unsuccessful brief taper attempt of Fluanxol by 5% on November 1st. Symptoms hit the next day. Too scared to continue tapering, reinstate full dose.
Severe crash in November after stupidly trying a barbiturate on November 9th. Grave mistake. Sense of unshakable inescapable internal torture, like my soul is in hell being tortured, terror/horror/dread/doom (probably akathisia?) that gets especially bad when trying to relax and fall asleep, muscles twitch, jerk and move on their own, shaking, insomnia, can't eat, confusion, disorientation, brain not working normally. Never felt so bad in my entire life. Never experiment with other meds while in WD! Praying to God I stabilize and get back to my baseline.
December - things getting even worse.

January - unbearable suffering


#44 Happypuppy

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Posted 27 December 2015 - 08:59 PM

I've found that building up as many non-drug tools as possible is the key to managing issues that I had pre-drugs (and were the reasons I initially started SSRIs).

 

I think of it as weaving a held life.  That is, I find a new idea (such as those listed in this topic) that seems like it would suit me.  I write it down and stick it on my wall.  I start to use it in my life, start to build up the habit of it.  Then I go and find another idea, and build this into my life.  Kind of like a bird builds a nest, I'm weaving together a whole bunch of things that will support my healing, and management of my underlying issues (depression, anxiety etc). 

 

One thing by itself may not do much, but the strength from the interwoven parts is greatly comforting and supportive. 

 

This exactly. Some of the things I have been forced to think about while tapering, has been what will I do when I'm off antidepressants?  Ok, so I will get down from time to time; it's part of my personality I guess.  What will I do to stop "down" from being "crash landed"?

 

Two things I am working on is exercise - just moving - and sunlight.  I am pretty lucky in Australia that for much of the year there is an abundance of light.  What I am doing differently now, though, is not hibernating indoors with the blinds drawn - even in the middle of summer.  I need at least 20 - 30 minutes of being outdoors per day.  I have been thinking about getting a light box for winter - my town can get pretty grim and dark in the winter.

 

Another good one for me is laughter - even hearing other people's contagious laughter will set me off.  Funny vids on Youtube are great.

 

Also, because deep down I am a bogan (redneck for Americans) when I crank something like "Thunderstruck" by AC/DC my knees start twitching, my feet start tapping, and maybe there's a little air guitar going on ... any music that gets my blood surging, makes me feel good.


- Sertraline 100mg from 2002 - 2007

- Tried Effexor XR in 2004, side effects were worse, went back to Zoloft.

- quit cold turkey a number of times due to side effects

- Generic Prozac from 2007 - 2011

- Pristiq in 2011 for two months, like Effexor XR I could not tolerate the medication

- Quit cold turkey, again experienced devastating rebound depression

- Back on Sertraline 50mg and then 100mg from late 2011 - current.

- Have scheduled a taper which will take a minimum of 2 years.

5/11/15 - dropped from 100mg to 50mg.  Memory issues, which subsided.  Feeling overly 'up', scared me. Cut back on coffee, seemed to get better.  

- 22/12/15 dropped to 45mg.


#45 Hopeinahpwr

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 04:31 PM

KarenB,
I like your view on the interwoven parts and how they comfort you as a whole. I too am now utilizing Journaling, meditation, meetings, peer/family support, this great forum...basically anything that helps me to better myself and my thought processes. As a whole, it definitely has helped! To better days!

On zoloft since 2000 for OCD/anxiety. Tapered off from 150mg to 100, 50, 25 over Dec/Jan 2015. After month n half off, began depression. Being terrified, as I never had depression before, after a few days, went back to 50mg, then five days later to 100mg. Now stable. I will stop this medication, with time and perseverance...my current taper level and timing are as follows, which includes No other Rx's, No alcohol, NEVER any illicit drugs:
    84mg from October 2016

    82mg from February 2017

    80mg from April 2017

"Yesterday is History, Tomorrow a Mystery, Today is a Gift." - Eleanor Roosevelt 

"Forces beyond your control can take away everything you possess except one thing, your freedom to choose how you will respond to the situation."

               - Viktor Frankl 


#46 KarenB

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Posted 15 April 2016 - 12:16 AM

That's so good to hear - I'm sure you'll find comfort in it too.


2010 May Fluoxetine 20mg. Raging mostly stops, become more functional.
2011 February Escitalopram 10mg (sudden switch). 2012 January Escitalopram 20mg.  2013 Early June Feeling great, decide to taper. Doc advises alternate days 20mg/10mg for 4 weeks.  Late June Steady. Drop to 10mg daily. Early July Not coping, raging, flu symptoms, shaky, anxious, low, spaced-out, self-destructive.  Mid July Return to alternate days 20mg/10mg - minimal improvement. Early August Return to full dose 20mg. Lost.
2014 February Switch to Venlafaxine. (First reduced Esc. to 10mg/day for a week) Feb-April Lost, 'light' self-harm, exhausted.
April Increase Ven. to 150mg/day. Dizzy. July 75mg twice a day to improve dizziness. Deep depression remains.  2015 Feb Vigilant dose spacing partially eases dizziness. Mar Switch to Effexor 75mg 2x/day. May Cut 10% to 135mg - bad w/d 2 mths, held 1 mth.  Aug 1.3% cut - bad 1mth, held 1mth. Oct 4 wkly 0.4% cuts held 6 weeks. Jan 2016 2 wkly 0.4% cuts. 8 month hold. Sept Wkly cuts: 0.5%, 3 1% cuts.  Oct 4 wkly 1% cuts, hold 3-4 weeks.
Supplements: Fish oil, vitamins E & C, magnesium, iron, MSM, oat-straw tea, nettle tea.  My story of healing: ContinuedHealing

***I am not a doctor or counselor; please do your own research and be prepared to take responsibility for decisions you make.*** 

           'The possibility of renewal exists so long as life exists.'  Dr Gabor Mate.


#47 sollicitudo

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Posted 09 May 2016 - 11:28 PM

I have been spending a lot of time in the sun the last few days - it seems to me that this has helped my w/d symptoms. Does anyone else have the same experience?


Effexor 150mg July 2011 - March 2014


#48 Junglechicken

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 12:36 AM

I walk every day for at least an hour, rain or shine.

Other areas of my healing have changed. I no longer take supplements and I do eat some junk food since my weight dropped back in March - this scared me as I thought I was ill.

I am in regular contact with a fellow WD sufferer which is a huge deal and of great comfort, and now that the Support group is gaining momentum will have monthly meetings to look forward to.

Also, I pray every day and do this on my walks.

19 Feb 2014 -Cipralex/Escitalopram 10mg daily June 2015 - Started taper, 5mg every other day July 2015 - 5mg every 2 days August 2015 - 5mg every 3 days September 2015 - 5mg every 4 days Sept 14th - Completed tapering, but at 7 weeks "drug free" I suffered serious WD symptoms as a consequence of "incorrect" tapering. Nov 25 2015 - Re-instated Cipralex @ 2.5mg daily. WD symptoms disappeared over a few days. Have been on this dose ever since and am experiencing "windows" and "waves". Nov 15th 2016 Re-started Therapy Jan 19th 2017 Started CBT. 4 Jan 2017 Homeopathic Treatment starts. 24 Feb 2017 Started weight loss program Mar 2017 Naturopathic Treatment starts - anti-Candida diet starts as suspected Candida Related Complex (CRC). 24 March 2017 DETOX (7 weeks) started for anti-Candida to help "re-set" my gut. April 2017 "Genova Testing 3 day stool sampling" Comprehensive Analysis. 11 May 2017 Stool sample analysis results - NEGATIVE :)  Plan to get tested for SIBO July 2017 Plan to get further health screening (mammogram, liver panel, food allergies etc.,).

Plan to re-start taper (Cipralex/Escitalopram) when feel ready.


#49 Uhu

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Posted 28 June 2016 - 08:46 PM

ON DEALING WITH EMOTIONAL SYMPTOMS, a metaphor:

Gained while approaching the rugged cliffs on the Northern California coast.

You approach the cliff. It is terrifying. You can feel the dreadful pull into the raging surf. You look at the boiling water hundreds of feet below. Sheer cliffs, sheer terror. There is no fence or guardrail - it is up to you to take care of yourself.

Do you succumb to the overpowering pull that would send you crashing down the cliff and shatter you on the rocks in the raging sea below? (I see these hidden rocks as those surprises, those hidden traumas that lurk - you know they are there, and they call to you in a destructive way.)

No..

Do you flee in fear, running to safety far from the dramatic upheaval of the cliffs? Hide from the fear, never to face it again?

No.

Instead, go as close to the fear as you can. When it becomes too much, take one step back - just one - to feel safer. Drop to your knees, ground, make sure of your safety. YOU CAN DO THIS. From your hands and knees, you can crawl closer to that chasm of panic. You can control how close you get to the dread edge - the end of your very world. Crawl. One tiny step of hand, of knee - you may find that you can get very close to the edge of your fear.

Then, lie down. Face your fear. Look at it. Look down the cliffs and be amazed. The wonder, the awesome power of the raging surf, the flight of birds around the floating kelp. The secret caverns that the surf explores, the rhythm of the ocean against the submerged rocks. Get to know your cliff. Become one with it - and yet - you are safe. You can experience your emotions from a safe place. The fear will not kill you - but what you do about it makes all the difference.

The fear may not subside, but you can control how much of it you take in, if you take time to step back, ground, and do what you need to be safe. Sometimes that may mean not going out of the house. Or maybe your cliff is driving the car. Or seeing or talking to people. Challenge that fear by finding a safe way - like a child - on your hands and knees - to explore that thing you fear. Sit in the car without driving it. Walk around the yard without going anywhere. Make one phone call to someone safe, someone comfortable.

When you go back to the cliff the next time, you may not be as afraid of that abyss. You may still be filled with horror at the thought of the cliff. Maybe you cannot get any closer without stepping back, going to your hands and knees, to a place of safety, in order to explore your fear. But - at least you know what lies beyond the cliff. And you know that you have the power to control how close or how far away that cliff is.


Edited by JanCarol, 28 June 2016 - 11:33 PM.
made font legible


#50 Uhu

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Posted 28 June 2016 - 08:53 PM

Thanks for this! And sorry for quoting not once, but twice...! -- something went wrong with my internet connection. This is a beautiful metaphor, and I will cherish it!

#51 JanCarol

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Posted 28 June 2016 - 11:35 PM

You're welcome!  I'm sure the natives were laughing at me crawling around the northern California coastal cliffs on my hands and knees, stretching my neck like a cat.....   :P


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#52 triplem15

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Posted 11 July 2016 - 05:36 AM

Jan Carol. How beautiful and thank you. May I ask you, the Neuro emotion , do they eventually return to normal , to be expected levels????
I do take Flonase,also take Zyrtec on and off. Maybe twice per week. I am on Vit. C, B-complex, Vit. D, selenium, Vit E, fish oil, and l-lysine and thats it. No street drugs. No alcohol. 9/2006 Welbutrin XL 150mg, Began Weaning June 15, 2015, Alternating days, changed each mos. Oct 2015 switch to Immediate release 37.5mg. mid october 2015 down to 18.75, (9.37mg twice daily. stayed there one mos.) Dec 2015 down to 9.37mg in AM and 7mg in PM, January 2016 down to 7mg AM and 4.6mg in PM. 4/5/16 cut down what I thought was 2.5 to 3mg. From 4/16/16 until yesterday, was not doing well. 4/20/16, 37.5mg yesterday for first time. 4/21/16 Two days now on 37.5mg. 4/22/16 took monitors advise and dropped dose to 18.75, split dose ,twice daily, now holding.

#53 Rose9975

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Posted 29 July 2016 - 07:03 PM

Hi All, I am hoping to commencement Neuro training sessions next week in the hope it will lead to greater emotional regulation.I have been reading a lot about trauma and how if can dysregulate the fear/flight response. I am willing to give anything a try to improve my quality of life.
I've started taking antidepressants in 2001. I took Cipramil for 3 years. Elflexor for 1 year. Lexapro 10mg - 20mg since 1992 approximately.

STARTING DOSE 20mg Lexapro 2016

19mg Lexapro (3rd January 2016)-Taper 5%
18mg Lexapro (8th February 2O16)-Taper 5%
17mg Lexapro (? March 2016) - Taper 5% -
16mg (16th May 2016) Taper 5 %
17mg (21st August 2016) + 5%
16mg (3rd January 2017) - 5%
15mg (4th February 2017) -5
STOPPING TAPERING FOR 6 MONTHS

#54 danny

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 03:05 PM

I've been struggling with motivation lately and I was recently given a model for a daily planner that has really been helping me and I just want to share it in hopes that maybe someone will find this helpful too. I think my problem may have been that I am looking at recovering my old self as this huge ginormous endeavor that was in no way possible to ever complete. This planner has helped me keep things small into little 24 hour chunks and it has made life a lot easier for me and makes recovering myself seem less scary.  I was given the model for this from a really good friend and I hope it will help you too as it is helping me. Hopefully the file attached and you can read it clearly and print it out.

 

You can decide to make your own following this model or you can just print out mine. I used Microsoft Word to make mine. The Do quadrant is just for listing daily tasks that need to be accomplished for that day and just scratch them off one by one as you go. The 2nd quadrant "Focus" is for listing future goals and how in the now you are helping yourself get closer to achieving them. So just jot down some tasks that you will accomplish for that day that will help you get closer to achieving your big super awesome future goals. The 3rd quadrant is "Work" that quadrant personally I need because I am self employed and it helps me keep the jobs I need to finish for work for that day clear and listed out like I said you can make your own and make these quadrants whatever the heck you want. The model is whats most important. The 4th quadrant I titled mentality and it just helps me keep focus on the mind sets I want to internalize for that day. For example there are mind states that I found really easy to live from before the antidepressants that are a little harder to do now, but I still want to live from. Like focusing on love for myself and others, not getting discouraged that I'm not where I would like to be yet, staying positive, being kind to myself and etc. This quadrant is like a reminder to you about awesome qualities/mind states you may have had in the past before the crappy drugs that you want to cultivate and live from in the now. I printed out like a zillion of these and I mark them with pen in the upper left corner with the date for that day and write in my tasks for that day and then scratch off what I accomplish one by one as I go it is a super fulfilling feeling when you scratch off everything you meant to accomplish for that day. I apologize for my punctuation and I know I could have done a better job of explaining all of this, but I am in a hurry I just really wanted to share this I hope this will help someone else too. 

Attached Thumbnails

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Month and a half taper off of Paxil 25 MG cr in 2011 excruciating withdrawal symptoms


#55 Rose9975

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Posted 21 September 2016 - 06:58 AM

Hi Danny, thank you for sharing. I find I can function on one hand very competent capable solution focused person when I have such clarify some up with really creative ideas...so much energy...mentally and physically but mostly I am tired and have brain fog when I have to remind myself to brush my teeth. My memory deteriorates and it psibs my head to thibk.I find the simple task of just dressing my bed makes me feel independent of my feelings....I think the list would be good once I don'the make my goals too aspirational as I have a tendency to be an 'all or nothing' thinking.I like visual aids I internalise the information more readily. Thank you again light & love xx
I've started taking antidepressants in 2001. I took Cipramil for 3 years. Elflexor for 1 year. Lexapro 10mg - 20mg since 1992 approximately.

STARTING DOSE 20mg Lexapro 2016

19mg Lexapro (3rd January 2016)-Taper 5%
18mg Lexapro (8th February 2O16)-Taper 5%
17mg Lexapro (? March 2016) - Taper 5% -
16mg (16th May 2016) Taper 5 %
17mg (21st August 2016) + 5%
16mg (3rd January 2017) - 5%
15mg (4th February 2017) -5
STOPPING TAPERING FOR 6 MONTHS

#56 Cicci

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Posted 08 October 2016 - 07:24 AM

I guess we all had different journeys and reasons for starting taking AD in the first place.
It took me a looong time to find out that I wasn't getting better by feeling sorry for myself - even if I think you are entitled to do so sometimes, just not all the time.
 
It helped me a lot to figure out what I really like to do and what makes me feel good - and then DO it, enjoy it and think of how good it makes me feel.
These are some of the things I enjoy most:

  • Cuddling with my cats
  • Spending some time out in the beautiful nature
  • Doing pottery (this is pure mindfulness to me!)

 

I also recommend trying out some of the hypnotherapy session by Thomas Hall - there's a LOT of them for free here: https://www.youtube.com/user/sable4e
I'm going to try out the "Motivation for Excercise" session next... ^_^


1988 - 2016 Different sorts antidepressants from Anafranile to Voxra. A couple of attempts to quit, but relapsed (?).

10/7 -16 From 225 mg Venlafaxin to 200 mg - No problems

31/7 -16 From 200 mg Venlafaxin to 175 mg - Minor panic attacks now and then

1/10 -16 Switched straight off from 175 mg Venlafaxin to 150 g Voxra on doctor's ordination (due to difficulties to cope with working as little as 25%)

-Bad withdrawal symptoms; dizzieness, nausea, insomnia, nighmares, heart pounding, panic attacks, malaise

4/10 -16 Continued with 150 mg Voxra and added 150 mg of Venlafaxine

5/10 -16 Removed Voxra on advice from SA, went back to 175 mg of Venlafaxine and will continue slowly tapering it out.

 


#57 JanCarol

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Posted 13 October 2016 - 07:21 PM

TripleM15 asks:

May I ask you, the Neuro emotion , do they eventually return to normal , to be expected levels???? 

 

It's like the old nugget about relationships.  When you decide you can live without one, you get one.  Only neuro-emotions are reversed.  When you accept them, and decide to float (see BrassMonkey & Claire Weekes "AAF") and realize you will survive them - they get better.

 

Normal?  Never!  I will never be normal again!  I say this with pride because I don't want to live in a world "Wrapped in Grey" (I've posted this song on the music thread).  So the goods are better, and the negative emotions - sadness, anger - are more genuine, because they are really me.  I had a moment last night where I thought about my dead ex's.  You know the song, "do you ever think of me?" and they can't because they are dead.  A tear came to my eye, and I appreciated, real, genuine grief.

 

***

I've decided that since Non-Drug Techniques are my favourite topic, I need to buff up this topic a bit with some new, novel techniques.  

 

There are Non-Drug Techniques scattered all over the forum.  I've written several of them myself, as a suggestion to an individual member's situation.  Additionally, I run across new techniques on a daily basis, but it would almost be too ambitious to post them all, so I will only post the ones I've tried.

 

I've decided to start collecting them here, as I find them - and I invite you to repost them here, as well.

 

I'm going to start with one that Shep and I were talking about in PM.  For focusing the mind, calming the nervous system, improving vision (geez, it could go over in the vision thread, too).  I wrote this, so I can repost it here.

 

If you do not have eye disease, you can use the candle version.

 

 

I went to a candle-gazing meditation yoga class.  First, we put on blindfolds, and withdrew our senses from the world, and did 4x10 minute long-hold postures [personal stuff edited] then, we did a 20 minute yoga nidra (like a body scan).  Then we sat up and did candle gazing. [personal stuff edited]

 

She called it Yoga Trataka (yogic gazing), and taught it 2 ways:

 

1.  Slowly open your eyes onto the candle flame, let go into the candle flame, and then slowly close your eyes, keeping the image of the flame in your 3rd eye, and

2.  Slowly open your eyes onto the candle flame, and let all else - the background - all else drop into darkness until all you see is that shining tiny flame.

 

I preferred the first one, but it was like a 20 minute sitting session, so she let us "play" with both.  One of my shamanism ladies was there, and was getting "inner vision work," I can't wait to talk to her some more.

 

I love the live candle, but if for some reason you cannot use this, there are trataka videos on the web:

 

If you have any eye disease, you are not recommended to use a candle, but a dot on the wall instead, as in this video:

 

(the "mantra" is meant to be silently said inside your mind.  This is one of the few mantras with a meaning, but I won't talk about that here.)

 

More to come.


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#58 JanCarol

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Posted 13 October 2016 - 11:46 PM

From my thread   http://survivinganti...626#entry251626:

 

Three of my current favorite non-drug techniques for mood adjustment (I have gazillions, but these are the ones I enjoy the most right now):

 

1.  The bucket of epsom salts or magnesium chloride.  The weather is hotter now, and having that nice cool bucket to plunge my feet into is really grounding.  I only need to sit or stand there for 5 minutes, but sometimes stay as long as 10.  Instant attitude adjustment!

 

2.  My very favourite one right now:  

  1. put in hearing aids
  2. go for a drive in the car
  3. turn on the music
  4. put on some vanilla lip balm (or pomegranate or)
  5. eat 3 cinnamon Altoids
  6. start doing gentle, long, deep slow breathing, and
  7. listen.  really listen to the music.

All senses engaged.  I'm in awe of this process - the hearing aids really lift the music, and my brain is more receptive to the pleasure of beauty in sound, and then the music itself is often quite uplifting, too.  Car stereo is nice, and I understand how to turn it on and "make it play" (unlike the "muso" studio equipment around the house!)

 

3.  Zip it up - Uddiyana bandha.  I've had yoga teachers who called it each of these things.  One yoga teacher told me, in pose, to zip up my core, like running a zipper from bottom to top.  Others have called it "naval to spine."  My current teacher calls it by its proper Sanskrit name, "Uddiyana bandha."  

 

Here's what I'm finding about #3:  I do it at least once while walking.  I do it often at my desk.  I sometimes do it while driving the car, or while I'm out, I just remember:  zip it up.  I find that I feel 2" taller, my posture corrects, and my heart is more free to open, my lower back is supported, and sometimes, even my neck and head feel better.  This is an improvement in self esteem, and it seems to work in moments, once you understand how it works, and can engage it confidently.  (I keep trying to get hubby to do it, and he just looks at me like I'm crazy, and he's not about to try something like that - it might be uncomfortable.  Never mind that it would help his back problem....)

 

Plus, core strength and breathing:  good for the Adrenal-cortical orchestra:  http://www.theatlant...chestra/496679/

Scientifically improves stress response!

 

So there you go:  3 novel non-drug techniques today


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#59 JanCarol

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Posted 13 October 2016 - 11:51 PM

Another one, from:  http://survivinganti...207#entry252207

 

 

Thymus thumping - or drumming!

 

You know when Tarzan used to yodel and pound his fists into his chest as a show of wild manliness?  Well I learned this in kundalini yoga, long ago.

 

The French word for heart, coeur, is the basis for our English word Courage.

 

The heart is not about love, it's about bravery.  Courage.  The fires burning in your heart that make living worthwhile.

 

Behind your breastbone, next to your heart is the thymus gland.  It is a sort of master gland, like the pituitary, but it runs immune function.

 

Try this:

 

Tap with your right fingertips, 3 times, firmly but gently on your breastbone in the middle of your chest.  Say as you tap - "I can do this!"  (I like "I" = tap, "CAN" = tap, "DO" = tap, then hold the fingers there for "THIS.")  Repeat with your left hand.

 

If you really want to fire it up, you can try it Tarzan style (but not if you've been having cortisol spikes, works better for fatigue related conditions).

 

I CAN DO THIS - or 

 

AAAAAYyyyyyyyyyy  - eeeeeeeeeIIIIIIIIIIIEeeeeEEEEEEEEE - AAAAAaaauuuuyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!  (the chanting would also activate your vagus nerve while you activate your thymus gland, tapping your breastbone like Tarzan, alternating knuckles.  Obviously, this is more intense!)


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#60 JanCarol

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Posted 14 October 2016 - 06:44 AM

I like your Day Planner, Danny!

 

I used to do a similar thing with coloured stars.  You know, the ones we used to get on our papers in kindergarten if we did a "Good Job!" it would be a gold star.

 

So I made up a code:

 

Blue star = in bed before midnight

Red star = up before 10 am

Green star = ate fruit & veg

Silver star = Exercised at least 20 minutes (that was back when I was more fit!)

Gold star = worked today.

 

So I would put the stars on my calendar at days end, and watch my calendar fill up with "Good Job!" stars!  It was rewarding, and sometimes when I was frustrated - maybe I didn't get to work that day (I was also self-employed) - at least I ate fruit & veg, or exercised.  I found that I could get at least one star a day, and often 3.  

 

The expectation was not to get all 5, but to do my best, and once the calendar started to fill up, it was motivation to try harder!


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#61 RachelE

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Posted 19 October 2016 - 10:55 AM

I find reading and researching about Dialectical Behavior Therapy to be very helpful. It was specifically designed to help emotional dysregulation which happens, but is not limited to, cases such as borderline personality disorder. It's very useful when it comes to dealing with strong and seemingly uncontrollable emotions. I recommend this resource: http://www.bipolarsj... DBT Group.pdf 
There are many others but I don't feel well right now, I'll post them later.

It's good that you found a site that helps you.  As for me, I find it therapeutic to refuse to believe in the bipolar label my shrink stigmatized me with. Willed lack of insight has done wonders for my self esteem!


I have been on so many medications since I was 20 and diagnosed as "mentally ill" that I have lost count.

Right now, however I have been taking:

Lamictal 25 mg: I went on it in March for only 13 days, then cold turkeyed off when I thought I was developing a rash because of it. Pretended to go back on it, but didn't. Not the best idea, but I had no way to reduce the dose. Anyhow I had no adverse withdrawal reactions, probably because I was on it for less than 2 weeks.

Abilify 20 mg:  I have been on this for several years. Actually at least half the time I have spent as a meds "consumer" I have been on this nasty pill. I finished tapering off it at the beginning of 2016. Was reinstated during the 4 days I spent in a psych ward in March. Tapered off it again in 10 weeks, from say March 15-June 30. Needless to say this is not exact, but I remember I was off it before July 4 (patriotic holiday in America!) I am doing fine, although I know I may have to wait till Christmas or later to know I am out of the danger zone for withdrawal psychosis. The main thing I notice about being off is that I no longer crave sweets all the time and am losing weight without trying. Good thing since I used to weigh 350 lbs.!

Effexor 150 mg: This is the real trouble-maker. Since I have no other way of tapering I do the best I can by bead counting. I unscrew the gel capsule and count out the tiny micro-capsules or beads inside. This works fairly well with the generic time release version. Only 120 beads to count of almost identical size. Lately I have been "holding" at 20 bead removal due to some major stress in my life. Moving hundreds of miles from my old home and a bout of strep throat that wouldn't respond to antibiotics.  I guess that means I'm on 120 mg of Effexor right now. On October 16 I am going to recommence my taper since I am safely moved and no longer have strep! 

I admit now that I did something stupid. I had trouble opening the extra strength gel capsules containing the beads so I reinstated at the original dose for a week. I know it's not good to play ping pong with my brain, but I could never open the capsules without spilling those microscopic balls all over so I was never sure what dosage I was taking! Thank the LORD that I finally have the old kind again and can safely count out the amount. I am now back on 135 mg and feel somewhat better.

October 30, 2016. I am down to 120 mg effexor. November 27, 2016. Down to 105 mg effexor. December 25, 2016. 90 mg effexor. January 15, 2017. 75 mg effexor. January 21. 82.5 mg effexor. January 23, 90 mg again. Feb. 14, 81.25 mg. Mar. 15, 72.5 mg. Mar. 27, 65 mg.  Apr. 9, 58.75 mg. Apr. 24, 52.5 mg.


#62 RachelE

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Posted 19 October 2016 - 10:57 AM

I've been struggling with motivation lately and I was recently given a model for a daily planner that has really been helping me and I just want to share it in hopes that maybe someone will find this helpful too. I think my problem may have been that I am looking at recovering my old self as this huge ginormous endeavor that was in no way possible to ever complete. This planner has helped me keep things small into little 24 hour chunks and it has made life a lot easier for me and makes recovering myself seem less scary.  I was given the model for this from a really good friend and I hope it will help you too as it is helping me. Hopefully the file attached and you can read it clearly and print it out.

 

You can decide to make your own following this model or you can just print out mine. I used Microsoft Word to make mine. The Do quadrant is just for listing daily tasks that need to be accomplished for that day and just scratch them off one by one as you go. The 2nd quadrant "Focus" is for listing future goals and how in the now you are helping yourself get closer to achieving them. So just jot down some tasks that you will accomplish for that day that will help you get closer to achieving your big super awesome future goals. The 3rd quadrant is "Work" that quadrant personally I need because I am self employed and it helps me keep the jobs I need to finish for work for that day clear and listed out like I said you can make your own and make these quadrants whatever the heck you want. The model is whats most important. The 4th quadrant I titled mentality and it just helps me keep focus on the mind sets I want to internalize for that day. For example there are mind states that I found really easy to live from before the antidepressants that are a little harder to do now, but I still want to live from. Like focusing on love for myself and others, not getting discouraged that I'm not where I would like to be yet, staying positive, being kind to myself and etc. This quadrant is like a reminder to you about awesome qualities/mind states you may have had in the past before the crappy drugs that you want to cultivate and live from in the now. I printed out like a zillion of these and I mark them with pen in the upper left corner with the date for that day and write in my tasks for that day and then scratch off what I accomplish one by one as I go it is a super fulfilling feeling when you scratch off everything you meant to accomplish for that day. I apologize for my punctuation and I know I could have done a better job of explaining all of this, but I am in a hurry I just really wanted to share this I hope this will help someone else too. 

I love it!


I have been on so many medications since I was 20 and diagnosed as "mentally ill" that I have lost count.

Right now, however I have been taking:

Lamictal 25 mg: I went on it in March for only 13 days, then cold turkeyed off when I thought I was developing a rash because of it. Pretended to go back on it, but didn't. Not the best idea, but I had no way to reduce the dose. Anyhow I had no adverse withdrawal reactions, probably because I was on it for less than 2 weeks.

Abilify 20 mg:  I have been on this for several years. Actually at least half the time I have spent as a meds "consumer" I have been on this nasty pill. I finished tapering off it at the beginning of 2016. Was reinstated during the 4 days I spent in a psych ward in March. Tapered off it again in 10 weeks, from say March 15-June 30. Needless to say this is not exact, but I remember I was off it before July 4 (patriotic holiday in America!) I am doing fine, although I know I may have to wait till Christmas or later to know I am out of the danger zone for withdrawal psychosis. The main thing I notice about being off is that I no longer crave sweets all the time and am losing weight without trying. Good thing since I used to weigh 350 lbs.!

Effexor 150 mg: This is the real trouble-maker. Since I have no other way of tapering I do the best I can by bead counting. I unscrew the gel capsule and count out the tiny micro-capsules or beads inside. This works fairly well with the generic time release version. Only 120 beads to count of almost identical size. Lately I have been "holding" at 20 bead removal due to some major stress in my life. Moving hundreds of miles from my old home and a bout of strep throat that wouldn't respond to antibiotics.  I guess that means I'm on 120 mg of Effexor right now. On October 16 I am going to recommence my taper since I am safely moved and no longer have strep! 

I admit now that I did something stupid. I had trouble opening the extra strength gel capsules containing the beads so I reinstated at the original dose for a week. I know it's not good to play ping pong with my brain, but I could never open the capsules without spilling those microscopic balls all over so I was never sure what dosage I was taking! Thank the LORD that I finally have the old kind again and can safely count out the amount. I am now back on 135 mg and feel somewhat better.

October 30, 2016. I am down to 120 mg effexor. November 27, 2016. Down to 105 mg effexor. December 25, 2016. 90 mg effexor. January 15, 2017. 75 mg effexor. January 21. 82.5 mg effexor. January 23, 90 mg again. Feb. 14, 81.25 mg. Mar. 15, 72.5 mg. Mar. 27, 65 mg.  Apr. 9, 58.75 mg. Apr. 24, 52.5 mg.


#63 Gridley

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 03:47 PM

Legs up against the wall yoga pose works great for me with withdrawal anxiety.  I'm a different person when I get up.


Gridley Introduction

 

Lexapro 20 mg. since 2004 for depression.  January 6, 2017, began 2.5% taper per week for four weeks with 2-week hold. Jan. 6 19.5 mg, Jan 13 19 mg, Jan. 20 18.5 mg, Jan. 27 18 mg, Feb. 3 two-week hold, Feb. 18 17.5  mg, Feb. 25 17.1 mg, Mar. 4 16.7 mg, Mar. 11 16.3mg, Mar. 18 two-week hold, April 1 15.9 mg, April 8 15.5 mg, April 15 15.1 mg, April 21 holding at 15.1 mg, May 5 resume taper at 14.7 mg, May 13 14.3 mg, May 20 13.9mg

 

Lorazepam 1 mg for colitis-related stress 1986.  CT 1992, reinstated a few months later.  CT approx. 2000 with no difficulty.  Since 2011 1mg for insomnia at bedtime. Decreased to .75 mg mid-2015 with no difficulty.  September 28, 2016, increased to 1.5 mg in a split dose of .5 mg, morning, afternoon and bedtime.  April 21 began crossover to locally available brand.  May 5 completed crossover and holding.

 

Imipramine 75 mg daily since 1986, prescribed for ulcerative colitis pain.  CT 1991, experienced bad flare-up of colitis, reinstated a few months later.  Jan. 27, 2016, began every-3-weeks 10% taper.  At 30 mg began experiencing dizziness; at 25 mg experiencing anxiety as well as insomnia; at 19 mg - more anxiety; at 15 mg - more anxiety; August 30 discovered SA, updosed to 25 mg and holding there.    

 

Supplements: theanine, omega fish oil, vitamin E, magnesium glycinate, Natural Balance Happy Camper, VSL3DS probiotic, vitamin D3, digestive enzyme, zinc, fo-ti.  Enerphos (phosphoserine) for insomnia. 


#64 JanCarol

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Posted 05 November 2016 - 08:23 AM

Non Drug Technique for the day:

 

Light a candle.  Make it the only light in the whole room.  

 

Watch it dance.  

 

Hold it in your hands and feel its warmth. 

 

Smell the wick and the wax.

 

Breathe, and share oxygen with it.  

 

Sometimes, you can even hear it (I have wood-wick candles that crackle like a campfire).

 

There.  All senses engaged.

 

Distraction, mindfulness, changing the channel.  Just by lighting a candle.

 

"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#65 JanCarol

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Posted 05 November 2016 - 08:29 AM

Non drug technique for the day:  Drink a cup of ice water.
 
Pour the ice into the glass.  Hear the sound of the ice.
Pour filtered water over it, and again, hear it move the ice, and feel the glass get cold as it fills will cool liquid.
Lift the glass to your lips.
Sip.
Swallow.
Repeat as needed.
 
The swallowing actually switches your brain from a place of "need" to a place of "satisfaction," and is good for quelling symptoms and cravings.


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#66 ChessieCat

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Posted 05 November 2016 - 01:27 PM

And from this topic:  help-for-feelings-of-depressiondoom-gloom

 

LOOK UP - Shift where eyes are looking to something at a higher elevation


Reminder to self:      P A T I E N C E       I want to go faster    but I won't

 

Antidepressants:  25 years - 1 unknown, Prozac (caused muscle weakness), Zoloft; Cipramil CTed (very sick for 2.5 wks soon after)

Pristiq:  50mg mid 2012, 100mg beg 2014 (mild Serotonin Toxicity)     Current:  Pristiq 24mg (from 19 May 2017)

 

Tapering history & graph

My website - includes my brief history + links to videos & information on the web

 

Podcasts:    Let's Talk Withdrawal

 

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not a medical professional.


#67 JanCarol

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Posted 13 December 2016 - 05:47 AM

I like that one, Chessie!

 

More Non-Drug techniques from my thread:

 

1.  Putting on lotion.  This is a simple soothing thing that I find helps to comfort.  It becomes ritualized, as I've done it all my life.  First my arms, then my feet, then my legs & belly, then finally my hands.

 

Choose a lotion which smells good to you, which feels good on your skin.  Again, enage as many senses as possible - this will be mostly scent and touch.  As you smooth the lotion over your skin, you can "take stock" of good feelings.  This feels good on my feet.  That feels good on my calves.  If you choose a lotion with mint, it can help cool aching muscles.

 

2.  Ragas.  Indian classical musicians have designed ragas (musical pieces based on scale & tone) to correlate with the natural cycles of the nervous system.  If you have trouble awakening in the morning, go to YouTube and find a "Morning raga" which pleases you.  If you have trouble winding down at night, choose an "evening raga."  If you get an afternoon slump, find an afternoon one.

 

I would encourage you, after you have selected your ragas, to stay with the same one for a period of time.  The music is rich and varied, and your body and nervous system will become conditioned to the familiar raga.  Over time, you may find that you can just think of the melody, or the sound of the musical instrument, and it will achieve the desired response.

 

There are digital channels which will play (for a fee) the right ragas at the right time of day, but this is extreme.  I have a number of CD's and love reaching into them to find the raga for "right now."  The morning raga is my favourite, and I used to awaken to it every day instead of an alarm clock.

 

3.  An Australian one:  have a cuppa tea! (may also have deep roots in the UK, China, and India!)  When I first moved to Australia, it seemed that the first answer for any trauma was to put the kettle on.  It was an appropriate, soothing response to share a cuppa tea with someone who loves you.  This seems to apply equally to car accidents, natural disasters, exploding relationships, and skinned knees.  I see this as a caring community response - to offer a cuppa.

 

I don't always have someone to share a cuppa with, so I often will do it for myself.  Maybe it won't be a black tea, but a green one.  Maybe it will be an herbal tea or a Tulsi.  

 

The actual plant doesn't matter.  The ritual of putting the kettle on, preparing the teabags (or pot, or balls), pouring the steaming water over, dunking the tea, watching the colour spread into the hot water, waiting (waiting!) for it to be the strength you like, adding any extras like sweet or lemon or milk, smelling the aroma of the steaming cup, tasting it, feeling it soothe your vagus nerve as you drink it.

 

Like with the cool water sips, the act of swallowing communicates to your body that you are getting a need met, and it can quiet a demanding nervous system.

 

Tea as a practice, can be very healing.

 

 

I can't emphasize enough that - you are in the thrashing throes of akathisia, and you will believe that a cuppa tea won't make a difference.

 

But it is the small things, the insignificant things, which make living worthwhile.

 

If you make that cuppa tea, and it didn't work - guess what - time has passed and you've survived another 5-20 minutes of hardship.


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#68 JanCarol

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Posted 13 December 2016 - 05:56 AM

Non Drug techniques:

 

1.  Worry dolls.

 

You know, they are a favourite "cheap souvenir" from Central and South America - a tiny box with tiny little dolls in colorful clothing.

 

There is significant wisdom in the worry dolls, limited only by your imagination.  Some anti-anxiety CBT recommends that you dedicate 5 min a day to "worry" and then put it away, well the dolls give you a physical symbol of that.

 

It's simple.  You don't have anyone who understands you.  Maybe the yellow doll understands why you feel so helpless, but the red doll understands when you get angry, and the blue doll listens to you when you are crying.  Talk to the little dolls.  

 

Say it out loud, if you can, or whisper it to them:  "I'm afraid that...."  "that is making me tense...." "s/he is giving me a hard time" or even "nobody understands."  Whisper it to the dolls, and then close them up in their box.

 

The subconscious can then work on solutions - if you want to imagine, the dolls talking together to solve your problems, while you get on with your life.

 

I saw a Chinese set of Worry Dolls yesterday, and I'd never seen Chinese ones before.  They were beautiful, a set of 4 in an ornate carved little black box.

 

This could also work with regular dolls or stuffed animals - just to get it out - but there is something special about closing the box on your troubles when you are done.  I suppose a box of stones might work, too.

 

2.  Affirmation Altoids.  So you gave your troubles to the trouble dolls.  Now it's time to do something positive.

 

I love my cinnamon altoids.  To mix it up, I put in a box of peppermint ones.  Just to challenge my senses.

 

Hold the altoid in your hand, accept the stress you are facing, and say, "I got this," as you pop the altoid in your mouth. 

 

Repeat the positive affirmation for as long as the altoid is in your mouth, and then when it is gone, let go.

 

Letting go of an affirmation is an essential part of making them work.  It gives your subconscious time to latch onto the idea and warm to it, and accept it, and even work towards bringing you closer to your positive goal.

 


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#69 JanCarol

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Posted 14 December 2016 - 05:17 AM

From:  https://www.madiname...ment-vets-ptsd/

 

Tai Chi, a traditional Chinese form of exercise which consists of slow, gentle movements and deep breathing, has been found to be beneficial in the treatment of sleep issuesdepression, and chronic pain. These slow, deliberate movements coupled with mindful breathing, the researchers hypothesize, could positively impact the hyperarousal symptoms related to PTSD. For this study, the researchers aimed to examine participant reactions, as well as the characteristics, adherence, adverse events, and satisfaction in regards the Tai Chi intervention.

 

Reference:  Niles, B. L., Mori, D. L., Polizzi, C. P., Kaiser, A. P., Ledoux, A. M., Wang, C., & Li, B. M. D. (2016). Feasibility, qualitative findings and satisfaction of a brief Tai Chi mind–body programme for veterans with post-traumatic stress symptoms. BMJ Open6(11), e012464. (Full Text)


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#70 JanCarol

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Posted 14 December 2016 - 05:19 AM

More Non-Drug Techniques:

 

 

3.  Body Brushing:

 

Wet or dry.

 

Get a sisal body brush with a long handle.  

 

Dry brushing is a detox protocol, so not for someone who is having intense withdrawal symptoms - but can be helpful for mood adjustment.  It's actually been beneficial for my niacin flushes, and sometimes I run the brush over my back before going to back at night.

 

There are dry brushing fanatics who insist that you would never need to bathe if you dry brushed your skin regularly and properly (and probably slather it in coconut oil afterwards).

 

Wet brushing is just good hygiene, making sure you clean and exfoliate - especially places you can't easily reach (I have more of those now than I did 20 years ago!).  A wet brush can be softer than sisal.  Some people like using a loofah-on-a-stick, but I prefer a good, firm sisal brush.

 

Afterwards, you feel clean and lightly stimulated.

 

Bonus:  

 

4.  Vagus Workout:

  1.  The simplest vagus workout is when you are alone in the car, to turn up the music and sing along at the top of your lungs.  Sing so loudly that you are nearly breathless!  Try to sing well, to match the notes, or sing your heart out - feeling every word as you sing.  My favorite song for this is REM's "Losing My Religion," it seems to capture emotion and challenges my breathing at the same time.  (silly me, I have lots of songs I try and do this to, but my voice has been surgically altered, and I can't sing like I want to).
  2. The next level:  I discovered this in the gym:  singing and walking.  I was on the treadmill, and nobody was around.  I had earphones in, and the music was so good I had to sing.  It boosted my workout, and I had to be able to walk and sing at the same time, challenging my cardio and my brain while massaging my vagus nerve at the same time!  This could work with circuit training, weightlifting, or even walks around the neighborhood!  It's great for challenging that "crazy lady" syndrome - heck yes, I'm Mad and Proud!  
  3. The ultimate level:   Chanting and yoga.  I haven't tried this one yet, I am often breathless in yoga.  Plus, I can't do it in class, I will have to try it at home.  The basic "Om" instead of exhaling, while holding a pose.  I've been wanting to develop my own vagus chants based on the tones and notes of the chakras - but that is still a work in progress (and I don't know how to turn on the keyboard yet to find the right notes!)
  4.  

"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!


#71 Lawyerliz

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Posted 29 December 2016 - 07:50 AM

I use a timer, even when I'm feeling ok. Hate housework. As you say, something gets done.

#72 JanCarol

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Posted 06 January 2017 - 09:02 PM

LOL LL!  I don't need to use a timer, my brain just "switches off" and I know it's time to do something else for awhile.

 

I'm constantly switching tasks to ensure that I'm interested in all of them.  It means my house is a mess, I have projects scattered everywhere - but - I am engaged with my life!

 

Non-Drug Techniques for the Day:

1.  Burden Basket - another version of the "worry doll" technique.  But this is one to be kind to your neighbors, to your home.

 

I gained this technique from Lakota and Cherokee practice as expounded in the book, "Sacred Path Cards,"  by Jamie Sams

 

When you go to visit another, there will be a basket by the door.  Before you step across the threshhold, take your problems, your worries, your stresses, and leave them in the basket by the door.  This way, you do not burden your friends and loved ones with your problems.  They will be there for you to take up when you leave.

 

Likewise, if you keep a burden basket outside your own home (this is especially beneficial for working people), as you pass the basket, you shed the work stress, the awful boss or coworker, the angry client, the traffic, the commute, and the difficulty you had at the shops.  Leave them in the burden basket, they will be there for you when you leave again, and you can take them up as you go into battle again.

 

This keeps your home a sanctuary, a safe place.

 

2.  Brush your Teeth.

 

Oh I struggle with this one.  I think this is a hallmark of those of us who have struggled with mental, emotional & chronic physical problems.  Nobody really sees your teeth, right?  You're not going out or anywhere, right?  

 

It's a 2-3 minute ritual that you can really use to improve your health.

 

I used to postulate (before I learned how damaging the drugs were) that the connection between cardiovascular problems and "mental illness" was brushing the teeth.  Poorly maintained teeth lead to more than just bad gums and breath - they can damage your heart, too.  And your digestion.  Everything you take in comes through your mouth.  The first place of purity should be (notice I say "should," because I still struggle with this!) your mouth.

 

I still don't do it daily, but when I can maintain a practice of teeth brushing, my digestion is better.  My bruxism is better (I'm more likely to wear my splint when my teeth are clean), and I believe I lose a little weight.  

 

I also scrape my tongue, a la yogic cleansing, as part of my teeth brushing routine.  It's gross - but - better out than in!


"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.

 

Currently Lithium Orotate 1.67 mg only.  I will re-evaluate this supplement in 2017.

 

I have been psych drug FREE since 1 Feb 2016!