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Rockingchaircat Day 600


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#1 Rockingchaircat

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Posted 11 March 2017 - 05:20 AM

Day 600 (March 11th 2017) 4 months shy of my two year mark.

 

My Introduction: - http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/10847-%E2%98%BC-rockingchaircat-recovery-from-psychotropic-drugs-that-were-prescribed-willy-nilly/page-1

 

I’m a male in my early 50’s, and I’ve been on several antidepressants: Zoloft, Lexapro, Celexa, Wellbutrin, and Paxil, and other psychotropics (as prescribed by the pill pushing Docs):  Benzos- Xanax and Ativan, and other crap.
These pills do not ‘balance your neurotransmitters”, that is a lie- for there is no balance. Instead it’s more akin to a Symphony:  Every neurotransmitter has its own part to play at it’s own time and place.

My taper strategy was something I came up with in desperation after trying out some boneheaded strategies involving either: A) going cold turkey and then B) following the advice of a medical doctor.

The Route: Cold Turkey- Freak Out. Go on Benzos. Reinstate Antidepressants. Taper off Benzos. Taper off Antidepressants. Lose what’s left of my mind. Try to regain it in recovery.

The Cold Turkey route resulted in my freaking out, which segued me into trying out the Benzos on the advice of a medical doctor- which worked GREAT, but only for a short time.  Then they stopped working completely. After a while with more of the same useless advice of “give it a few weeks” Or “increase the dose”- I got fed up with the docs and found the website: Benzo Buddies. http://www.benzobuddies.org/forum/index.php?topic=122050.0
There- I learned of the Pharmaceutical Blasphemy- of the necessity of not taking pills. Then I got better advice about how to go about weaning myself off of Benzodiazepines properly. It took a few months but I managed to wean myself off of the Benzos that I was on. Then after a couple of stable months- I decided to taper off of my antidepressant ‘slowly’, as recommended by a different doctor. But, even that was faster than I should’ve tapered-.
I thought at the time that my antidepressant withdrawal would take about the same time as it took me to wean myself off of the Benzos.
 
Boy was I wrong. 
It took me much longer. Which doesn’t come as a surprise now- after all I’d been on more of them for longer than I was on the Benzos.

My Coping mechanisms/Strategies during my withdrawal- included the following:

1)     Amino acids,

2)     Beans,

3)     Exercise,

4)     A Full Spectrum Light,

5)     Hobbies,

6)     The Internet,

7)     Meditation,

8)     Motivation

9)     Music,

10)  Nature,

11)  (Orgasms),

12)  & Sunlight.

 

I also found it helpful to cut out chocolate, coffee, and eventually dairy products. Chocolate left me with a severe heartburn. Coffee left me an increased level of anxiousness- cutting it out decreased my anxiety by a measurable amount. And dairy foods made me sleepy- to the point that it was a miniature nasty fatigue day.

My Withdrawal Problems:

1)     Anxiety

2)     Depression

3)     Nasty Fatigue Days

4)     General Fatigue

5)     Cortisol Spikes

6)     Mood Swings

So- what was it like for me? Hell. I cannot put it any other way- It was Hell- it was the absolute WORST thing I’ve ever had to endure.

Anxiety- A general fear that dogged me constantly- from the numerous times I woke up in the middle of the night, dealing with it’s intensity during the day- and then trying to cope with my existence after work and not being too terrible an Ogre to my wife, daughter, friends, and house cats. The fear had grown, to where everything wasn’t worth it. I couldn’t even read a novel- because of fear that the fictional characters were going to encounter hardship.  And the boredom, despite the almost constant anxiety waves, I was bored out of my mind. Every hour felt like a day. Every night when I couldn’t fall asleep long enough to catch rest- I stared at the ceiling and tried to get my racing heart to calm down- for hours. Ironically enough- the first few hours of most nights I could sleep- until I started to dream. And when I started to dream- the Cortisol Spikes started up. But dreams are the time when you need the rest the most.

Depression- will come back with a vengeance since you don’t have a pill to push it away anymore. So you must fight it. Depression is the Enemy. Depression- Lies.
It will do its utmost to deny you reality. It will tell you that it’s not worth trying. But it’s all lies. Because it IS worth it, life is worth it. It’s all worth the trouble. During the early withdrawal phase- I often thought of steering my car into a tree, but I had to fight those thoughts, what I came up with: That driving into a tree was no guarantee of the release I sought. That in fact (knowing my luck) I’d be horribly injured, out of a truck, left with a massive amount of bills to pay with no way of paying for them- and lose my house, my job, and most importantly- the medical insurance my daughter needs to survive on.  I refused to let myself end that way – that would’ve been a coward’s way out. In fact- just about anything and everything depression tells you isn’t ‘worth it’: IS.  Try to remember this: If depression tells you it ain’t worth it- then you know it is.

Nasty Fatigue- That was something I used to get on a regular basis- every two weeks or so during my early days.  A depression so extreme that it was torture to get out of bed, and all I could manage was to lie around utterly depressed with existence and stare at the wall in complete and utter despair- for hours, often days. It was an effort to get up and go to the bathroom.
I would eat- but only at the behest of my wife, and even then I could only manage a half sandwich- a day. Like so many other symptoms- it’s gone, but it took a while for it to go away. It didn’t so much stop as it melted away. In the depths of it- I would sleep. But it wasn’t in the least restful sleep. And the only way out of it that I could find- was to fight it. I forced myself to get up and stay awake. Words fail me- I simply do not have the words necessary to convey how difficult it was.
It was stubborn- I had to out stubborn it.

General Fatigue- everything was hard. I had no energy. I went so far as to have my Thyroid hormones checked. ALL of them, not just the usual ones the docs usually pawn off onto you as being ‘comprehensive’ when it’s not.  But even that checked out fine. So in the end- no matter how awful I felt about it- I just forced myself to do things. Eventually, my body stopped fighting me so vigorously – and gave in. It was an uphill battle.

Cortisol Spikes- During my Benzo withdrawal- I got to enjoy waking up in the middle of the night at FULL ALERT! Often- many times a night. Every time I dreamed- I woke up in a panic. Naturally- this ended up with me not having a decent night’s sleep- so I tried to compensate by increasing my napping. That didn’t work- because invariably I’d wake up after a second or two with still MORE anxiety from another Cortisol Spike. It took me over a year before I could nap again. Alas, I still have a bit of a phobia against naps now. Eventually the Cortisol Spikes increased to the point that I simply wasn’t getting sufficient rest. And in fact I broke down several times at work in hysterics- from sleep deprivation. Most, yet not all, were when no one else was around.

Mood Swings- Self Pity- was the biggest one. Which often segued into Furious Rage at the seemingly endless hours of unending mental and physical torture.

So how did I endure all of this withdrawal crap?

By getting my Neurotransmitter Symphony working again;
and how did I do that?

Read on.

Windows/Waves.

I too got the Waves and Windows that just about everyone gets. But along the way I learned of ways to extend the Windows, and shorten the Waves.

Full Spectrum Light/Sunlight-
I got a window or two even during the beginning. But they didn’t occur often enough- or for that matter long enough- I’d get a few hours once a month- maybe.  But there was one thing that initiated my first several day long window:  A Verilux Full Spectrum light. It helped pull me out of the winter blahs and the crippling depression that came from decreased sunlight.

Now though I never had another several day window start up because of it-even so it has helped in the subsequent recovery process.   I’d recommend one for your own use- but I’d also recommend following the instructions- no more than a few minutes a day at first. Why? Because we’re all photo-phobic during our early withdrawal, and you might end up with a sunburn if you’re not careful. Because you need sunlight to help you get better.  Our bodies- crave it. Sunlight sets our Circadian Rhythm- that same rhythm that was thrown out of whack by the pills. It helps us release Serotonin (to wake up) and Melatonin (to fall asleep), both neurotransmitters that help us. And I use mine every day.  I’ve got the tan to match.

Exercise-
During all of my withdrawal- I exercised. For me, in earlier days (prior to my withdrawal) I had obtained and used a small work out gym set that I placed in my garage for weight training. I’m hardly buff, let alone ripped, but it has helped keep me fairly strong. And it made for a nice routine 3x a week. Additionally I had a bicycle I used for aerobic activity 3x a week. 1x a week I just didn’t do either- but even then I did something. Usually I did yard work or went for a walk.
The point is- do something, anything. Even if all you can manage is one set of pushups- DO IT! Even that little bit will do you good.
Walking- Walking is Good. I preferred to do that every day (weather permitting). Walking in a natural setting- it helps. I’m lucky in that I have a pine forest in which I can skirt.
And the body needs that.  You NEED to get out of the house. You MUST get out and get some fresh air. You’ll hate it at first, I guarantee it. But nonetheless You NEED to do that, Every-Single-Day.  (And exercise is excellent dealing with the excess energy that comes with constant anxiety attacks.) Exercise comes with it’s own built in Happy Ending: The Endorphin rush. You’ll eventually get it, and crave it enough to keep going at it.

Why? Because the Endorphins are another form of Neurotransmitters that you need.

Amino Acids-
Along about the time I started getting hysterical due to lack of sleep I was getting desperate. I was grasping at straws- and that’s when I discovered Taurine.  It, along with some magnesium- was as close to a god send for my sleep as the Happy Light was for my depression and fatigue. The first couple of weeks taking Taurine/Magnesium- I was able to turn a corner and started getting something akin to a decent night’s sleep.
Not much, but even that little was better than none. Nowadays- I still get the occasional middle of the night wakefulness from a Cortisol Spike- but it’s usually after a long stretch of dreaming.

And with that success- I started researching into other aminos and eventually settled upon: Tyrosine, Taurine, and Theonine. They all had one thing in common. They were/are Neurotransmitter Pre-cursors.  And what is a Neurotransmitter Precursor? It’s something the body can take and create a Neurotransmitter with.

Now backing up a bit- what I learned at Benzobuddies- was that our brains and bodies- are inherently Lazy. Our bodies produce a Neurotransmitter called GABA. It’s used by the brain to calm things down. When we use a Benzo- the body adapts to it and stops producing GABA. That would be one thing.
But our bodies are fiendish in that after we’ve gotten used to the pill- we develop ‘tolerance’- which is to say- that the pills stop working. The tolerance is when our bodies chose to stop producing the neurotransmitter we were augmenting/replacing with by using a pill.

Thus if we stop using the benzo - what little defense we have against overstimulation- isn’t there in the quantities that it was prior to the pill use.
This end result creates the waves and windows we all get to ‘enjoy’ during withdrawal. Our bodies still produce the needed neurotransmitters- just not often enough or in large enough quantities. And every now and again- for I’ve no idea reasons why- for a few hours or days our bodies produce just what level of them we need to feel OK. Those are the windows. But they don’t last- and the Waves of symptoms start up again.

It’s the same thing with anti-depressants. The pills cause us to stop producing enough Serotonin or Dopamine (depending on what you’ve been prescribed).
So what the hell are we supposed to do when we go off the pills? We need those neurotransmitters- yet we don’t produce enough of them anymore. Taking straight neurotransmitters such as Serotonin, Dopamine, or GABA, is counter-productive, when what we need is to get our bodies to produce them again.
So after a suitable amount of self-research- I settled on the Amino Acids that are neurotransmitter precursors. Tyrosine is used by the body to create: Dopamine.  Theanine is used by the body to create: Serotonin. And Taurine is used by the body to create GABA. And the nice thing is that you won’t overdose on them. Your body will use them to make ‘just enough’.
The aminos helped me immensely. They didn’t cure the problem, but they took a LOT off of the rough edges and made my recovery- tolerable. It’s gotten to the point that my body does produce the necessary neurotransmitters on it’s own- that I’ve started tapering off of the aminos I’ve been taking. And on a couple of days- I’ve forgotten to take them without noticing that I hadn’t.

Meditation-
During all of this- I meditated when I could. Invariably during such meditations- I fell asleep. But even that helped in its own way. It helped me learn how to suppress in a small way the anxiety that did occur- a bit of biofeedback that helped me learn to calm down and distract myself. The suppression techniques still come in handy even now on day 600, and I imagine that they’ll still be doing me good for years to come. Though in the early days I often just wrapped myself in a heavy comforter, turned on the room fan, and stared off into space for hours while sitting on the bed in the middle of the night, and I’d do the same on the weekends both during the day and night.

Hobbies-
Do something you enjoy- or did. Go back to it. Even if it’s a mighty burden, sit yourself down and work on your hobby. Even if it takes you an hour- to do something that you have done in seconds before- do it. Eventually- you’ll remember the fun that you had with it before. You’ll notice that by immersing yourself into it- you can ignore the pain for a bit. Naturally you’ll look forward to doing it again.
Me? I work on spaceship models. And from what I’ve learned- by taking the time to do even 5 minutes a day, and doing it slow- I do a much better job on them now.
See- I learned something.

Internet-
I spent many an hour researching these conditions that fell into my lap. Such research led me to Benzo Buddies and Surviving Antidepressants.   But it also made me appreciate how wonderful that the internet can be when it comes to distracting myself from my pain.
I read somewhere that we all get a dose of Dopamine when we open another interesting page on the net. Hey- whatever works.  Online games- such as Lumosity- give me something to gauge my progress in such things as fine motor skills, memory skills, and Hand/Eye coordination- all of which has suffered during the worst of my withdrawal.

Of late- I’ve been trying the stuff I had to cut out: Chocolate, Coffee, Dairy foods. I’m back to eating those things again, and in fact it does make feel better to be able to do so.
Chocolate makes me feel good after eating a bit. Coffee makes me feel good after drinking it. I had my first slice of pizza just the other day- it felt good after eating it. (I imagine that if I eat too much of the above I won’t be feeling quite so good- after seeing what my bathroom scale has to say!)

 

Motivation-
It’s what kept me going. What kept me going?  My Wife, My Daughter- they are what kept me going. (And my Mom- she made me promise to keep going too). (No Dad though- that’s another story) I was needed - my family needed me. It wasn’t much. But sometimes that was the only thing that kept me going- was the thought that they needed me.  I cannot remember how many times I woke up just as it was time to get up- and simply didn’t want to keep going anymore. I didn’t want to face yet another day of constant anxiety or fear. But I got up and did it anyways.
Snuggles with the wife- helped me, the physical touch was something I needed. And Snuggles releases a neurotransmitter- Oxytocin.
And there were some phrases that helped motivate me through many a hard day- and they’re still something I occasionally have to fall back on when things get tough mentally:

1)     Be Here Now

2)     Accept

3)     Pain is Mandatory- Suffering is Optional

These three phrases tie in with each other.
#1 Be Here Now; is the motivation that you are only in the now- and for you to not fixate upon the timeline of your withdrawal. The past is done, the future will come, but it’s best to focus on the immediate now and what you can do with it.
#2 is about the immediate now- refusing to accept what’s going on in withdrawal will just make it worse. By Accepting that this is the way things are- you actually gain a sort of control over it all
# 3- There is the Pain of Withdrawal- you can find ways to cope with the pain. Suffering is what comes about when you refuse to accept what is. You can choose to not be the person subjected to an endless misery of withdrawal. Yes I was in Withdrawal- but I choose to be more than a person in withdrawal- I chose instead to try and enjoy life as much as I could in between the wave crests.
In both my benzo and antidepressant withdrawal blogs- I griped something fierce about it all. For that I make no apology. For I also chose to try and grab onto whatever little pleasures and triumphs I could garner when I was able to.

Nature-
There’s something about the forest, or even alone time next to a lake that helped me to calm down after a particularly grueling week or day.  I got a few spiritual moments from the interplay of light in the clouds along with the wind in the leaves. Those few moments came at a time that I needed them.

Music-
I remember reading in a Science Magazine- that Music gets just about every area in the brain running. And that’s something that you need. The pills make our brains ‘soft’, music helps reboot it, it’ll evoke memories both good and bad. It’ll make you cry, it’ll make you laugh. And that’s what you need to do to get your neurotransmitters kicking in again.

 

Beans-
So what’s the big to do about beans? Gastrointestinal Health is paramount. Even though all of the other stuff I’ve listed above helped- I’ve also still had a number of problems involving Cortisol Spikes, the one thing that helped me well with that (after the Taurine) were Beans. I’ve found that the addition of a couple of tablespoons worth of Black Beans with dinner- seemed to lessen the number and frequency of Cortisol Spikes.
I’m not exactly sure why this happens- though I have my suspicions. From what I understand- they’re a good source of something called Oligosaccharides. I learned about them after watching a documentary about Human Breast Milk. Apparently- Human Breast Milks’ primary ingredients include: 1) Water, 2) Fats, 3) Proteins, and 4) Oligosaccharides. So what are they? They’re a form of sugar that humans cannot digest.
Now why on earth would humans produce something that babies cannot digest?  Apparently the oligosaccharides are digested by a form of bacteria in the human gut- Beneficial Bacteria. The kind of bacteria that not only promotes our health in our guts but also helps us from - amongst other things- getting depressed.
Long story short- Beans help you calm down and helps to prevent you from getting depression. Weird huh?

Orgasms-
Orgasms make you feel better. Orgasms release several feel good neurotransmitters.  If you can- go for it. Hitachi wands are helpful in that regard for some folks.

What’s it like for me now?  I still get depressive. I still have bad days. But I’m also having good days. I’m enjoying life again. My hobbies are fun again. I’m spending time with my wife enjoying the amenities that my house and internet has to offer. (Netflix!)
I’m honestly laughing again. For the longest time I forced myself to.  After a while- I was able to give an honest laugh. That was a relief. Laughing- makes me feel better. Now- I can laugh spontaneously. Laughter releases Neurotransmitters.
Crying- that too was near impossible for me. Now- I cry every few days. Crying- makes me feel better. I’m not up to crying spontaneously- but I’m working on it.
I appreciate the time I have with my wife. I appreciate the time I have with my daughter. These times are so precious to me now.

Weight loss-
 I still get hungry and I’m inclined to overeat if I’m not careful. Somehow I’ve still managed to lose about three pants sizes. I’ve still a ways to go, but such is a nice feeling. On the antidepressants- even mild hunger felt like I starving to death.  In fact, there were times that I kept shoving food down my throat despite being so full that I was vomiting out food- but I was still famished- I couldn't achieve satiation.
Now- it’s not. It’s bearable. I feel hunger, and it’s easily satisfied.

I’ve lost a lot of my health due to trusting the medical doctors. I now am short one gall bladder- due to the gastrointestinal upsets my body underwent from the initial cold turkey. It was a journey of discovery for me when I found out that so many medical doctors- just don’t give a damn about folks’ suffering.  Compassion Fatigue it’s called.
My antidepressants- also caused me to react to allergens even more violently- I now need a CPAP to breathe at night- due to an Emergency Room visit in which some idiot botched my intubation during a visit due to a food impaction in my esophagus caused by a food allergy. During that little escapade they also managed to pierce my esophagus and I came close to needing a transfusion. And it managed to screw up my trachea too, Joy.

For some reason- I find I cannot trust the Medicos as much as I did before.  Why should I?
They give us pills when they know they shouldn’t. During my withdrawal- I ended up going to the ER at least 6 or 7 times for things. On 5 of those visits- they gave me a scrip for Oxycodone tablets. Only two of which I put in for at the time. The other 3 I just tore up and threw away. And of those I kept- I used maybe a half dozen tablets- the rest of the contents of the bottles- I threw away.

Day 600. March 11, 2017. 4 months shy of my two year mark.  That’s the two year mark after tapering off of my antidepressant. That’s not including the time I spent from going cold turkey to now.

Let’s see, including that turns out to be: 1048 days.

Nasty. I’ve lost nearly 2 decades of my life to this crap. Thanks for nothing there Mr. Hippocratic Oath. And I’ve found that I’ve been having an issue with a short temper quite often of late.  It could be a form of PTSD, it could be part of my personality that I’ve always had but never learned to control or channel.  If so- then it’s past time for me to learn some anger/frustration management techniques.

 

Which I'm doing now.  Now, I'm having to relearn how to be a mature and responsible adult.   It's an interesting time.


1)Zoloft- 6/99 to 8/04 2)Escitalopram- 8/04 to 8/10 3)Citalopram 8/10 to 4/14 (C/T), 4)Paxil a week or so, 5)Wellbutrin a week or so, 6)Reinstated Citalopram- 9/14 to 7/15

Before Taper- Celexa/20 mg....Taper Start- 04/21/15- 15mg....05/26/15- 10 mg...06/22/15- 5 mg...07/18/15- 0mg. http://tinyurl.com/qjfoqe9 Ativan/Lorazepam use/taper 10/14 to 2/15- http://tinyurl.com/ljebp84

Baclofen- Intermittent use of from 2008 till 2014. Some use of Promethazine. Some use of Zofran. Clobetasol Propionate- for Lichen Planus. Some Flexeril use. 

Ativan- GABA,A receptor Agonist., Baclofen- GABA,B receptor Agonist., Celexa/Lexapro- Serotonin 5-HT1A Receptor Agonist., Zofran- Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor Agonist..Promethazine- Histamine H1-Receptor Antagonist. Flexeril- Serotonin 5HT2a Antagonist.

 

My self imposed Amino Acid Therapy: Tyrosine 500mg 1xday, Theanine 200 mg 1xday, & Taurine 500 mg 2x day. (All neurotransitter pre-cursors)- seems to have helped me immensely. And of course- eating healthy, including Black Beans for the oligosaccharides for gut health.

 

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the Art of Living. - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.

 

 

 


#2 Junglechicken

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Posted 11 March 2017 - 07:26 AM

Amazing RCC, you've got me speechless ......


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.


#3 LexAnger

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Posted 11 March 2017 - 01:42 PM

Hi Rocking,

Fabulous update! Much appreciation to you for sharing your experience, knowledge, lessons, and success!
Enjoy the most deserved life you fight so hard and well for. Hope you continuous healing.

Hats off to you!
And hugs,
Lex
<p>2009 Mar.: lexapro 10mg for headache for 2 weeks.2009-2012: on and off 1/4 to 1/3 of 10mg2012 June--2013 Jan,: 1/4-1/3 of 10mg generic, bad jaw pain2013 Jan-Mar: 10 mg generic. severe jaw and head pain; Mar--Aug. started tapering (liquid ever since) from 10 to 5 (one step) then gradually down to 2.25 mg, first ever panic attack, severe head/jaw pain2013 Aug.: back to 2.75 mg; Nov: back to Brand Lex. 2.75mg -- 3mg, slight improvement with pain2014 June: stopped PPI, head pressure/numbness. up-dosed 4.5mg, severe reaction mental symptoms added on2014 Aug--2015 Aug: Micro taper down to 3.2mg, .025mg (<1%) cut holding 2-3 weeks.2015 Aug 15th, Accidental one dose of 4.2mg. worsening brain non-functional, swollen head, body, coma like, DR2016 Feb., started fast taper for the drug toxicity caused by the one dose of 4.2mg, dosing 10am through 11 pm everyday2/13--3.2mg, 3/15-- 2.9mg, 4/19-- 2.6mg, 6/26--2.2mg, 7/22 --1.9mg, 8/16--1.8mg,8/31--1.7m g, 9/13--1.6mg, 9/27--1.5mg, 10/8--1.4mg, 10/14--1.3mg, 11/1--1.2mg, 11/29--1.1mg, 12/12--1mg, 12/22--0.9mg2017: 1/7--0.8mg, 1/15--0.7mg, 1/17--0.6mg, 1/20--0.52, 1/21--0.4mg, 1/22--0.26, 1/23--0.2, sliding Down to 0.13mg by 2/13, then 0.07mg since 2/18, 0.06mg 2/20-3/17, 0.13mg 3/18

#4 LexAnger

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Posted 11 March 2017 - 10:10 PM

Rocking, were you able to work the past years?
<p>2009 Mar.: lexapro 10mg for headache for 2 weeks.2009-2012: on and off 1/4 to 1/3 of 10mg2012 June--2013 Jan,: 1/4-1/3 of 10mg generic, bad jaw pain2013 Jan-Mar: 10 mg generic. severe jaw and head pain; Mar--Aug. started tapering (liquid ever since) from 10 to 5 (one step) then gradually down to 2.25 mg, first ever panic attack, severe head/jaw pain2013 Aug.: back to 2.75 mg; Nov: back to Brand Lex. 2.75mg -- 3mg, slight improvement with pain2014 June: stopped PPI, head pressure/numbness. up-dosed 4.5mg, severe reaction mental symptoms added on2014 Aug--2015 Aug: Micro taper down to 3.2mg, .025mg (<1%) cut holding 2-3 weeks.2015 Aug 15th, Accidental one dose of 4.2mg. worsening brain non-functional, swollen head, body, coma like, DR2016 Feb., started fast taper for the drug toxicity caused by the one dose of 4.2mg, dosing 10am through 11 pm everyday2/13--3.2mg, 3/15-- 2.9mg, 4/19-- 2.6mg, 6/26--2.2mg, 7/22 --1.9mg, 8/16--1.8mg,8/31--1.7m g, 9/13--1.6mg, 9/27--1.5mg, 10/8--1.4mg, 10/14--1.3mg, 11/1--1.2mg, 11/29--1.1mg, 12/12--1mg, 12/22--0.9mg2017: 1/7--0.8mg, 1/15--0.7mg, 1/17--0.6mg, 1/20--0.52, 1/21--0.4mg, 1/22--0.26, 1/23--0.2, sliding Down to 0.13mg by 2/13, then 0.07mg since 2/18, 0.06mg 2/20-3/17, 0.13mg 3/18

#5 Tootsieroll

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Posted 11 March 2017 - 11:02 PM

Bravo on the end of your journey!!  Seems we had a very similar road and I can't wait to be able to write my own story.  I have just hit my 3 year mark and like you stated, this does not even include the cold turkeys and taper.  It is unspeakable what these poisons do and I will also never recover the last 2 decades of my life.  There is a silver lining though.  The road is now wide open and I'm sure you can look back and see how far you have come and grown.  Because of the suffering we have all endured, I only wish that we all get some blessings in our near futures.


<p>10 years of ssri and finally tapered off in 2 years. Off Celexa by jan/28/2014 and off benzos by March/6th/2014 after only two months use and still experiencing withdrawal symptoms.

#6 Rockingchaircat

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Posted 12 March 2017 - 08:57 AM

Rocking, were you able to work the past years?

More like I had to. I've been working a full time 40+ job, the entire time.

Every vacation time was spent dealing with the previous months. In fact I'm coming up on some vacation time in a month. I'm so looking forward to it now. In that I'll actually get to enjoy it.


1)Zoloft- 6/99 to 8/04 2)Escitalopram- 8/04 to 8/10 3)Citalopram 8/10 to 4/14 (C/T), 4)Paxil a week or so, 5)Wellbutrin a week or so, 6)Reinstated Citalopram- 9/14 to 7/15

Before Taper- Celexa/20 mg....Taper Start- 04/21/15- 15mg....05/26/15- 10 mg...06/22/15- 5 mg...07/18/15- 0mg. http://tinyurl.com/qjfoqe9 Ativan/Lorazepam use/taper 10/14 to 2/15- http://tinyurl.com/ljebp84

Baclofen- Intermittent use of from 2008 till 2014. Some use of Promethazine. Some use of Zofran. Clobetasol Propionate- for Lichen Planus. Some Flexeril use. 

Ativan- GABA,A receptor Agonist., Baclofen- GABA,B receptor Agonist., Celexa/Lexapro- Serotonin 5-HT1A Receptor Agonist., Zofran- Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor Agonist..Promethazine- Histamine H1-Receptor Antagonist. Flexeril- Serotonin 5HT2a Antagonist.

 

My self imposed Amino Acid Therapy: Tyrosine 500mg 1xday, Theanine 200 mg 1xday, & Taurine 500 mg 2x day. (All neurotransitter pre-cursors)- seems to have helped me immensely. And of course- eating healthy, including Black Beans for the oligosaccharides for gut health.

 

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the Art of Living. - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.

 

 

 


#7 Rockingchaircat

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Posted 12 March 2017 - 08:59 AM

Bravo on the end of your journey!!  Seems we had a very similar road and I can't wait to be able to write my own story.  I have just hit my 3 year mark and like you stated, this does not even include the cold turkeys and taper.  It is unspeakable what these poisons do and I will also never recover the last 2 decades of my life.  There is a silver lining though.  The road is now wide open and I'm sure you can look back and see how far you have come and grown.  Because of the suffering we have all endured, I only wish that we all get some blessings in our near futures.

Many Thanks.  Indeed a similar road. You shall be writing your own story, and I'll be here to read it.

I wonder if there are in fact demons in the world- because I cannot think of any other way that makes sense how these things get marketed.

The blessings will come.  Stand Fast-  and you'll be able to grab them!


1)Zoloft- 6/99 to 8/04 2)Escitalopram- 8/04 to 8/10 3)Citalopram 8/10 to 4/14 (C/T), 4)Paxil a week or so, 5)Wellbutrin a week or so, 6)Reinstated Citalopram- 9/14 to 7/15

Before Taper- Celexa/20 mg....Taper Start- 04/21/15- 15mg....05/26/15- 10 mg...06/22/15- 5 mg...07/18/15- 0mg. http://tinyurl.com/qjfoqe9 Ativan/Lorazepam use/taper 10/14 to 2/15- http://tinyurl.com/ljebp84

Baclofen- Intermittent use of from 2008 till 2014. Some use of Promethazine. Some use of Zofran. Clobetasol Propionate- for Lichen Planus. Some Flexeril use. 

Ativan- GABA,A receptor Agonist., Baclofen- GABA,B receptor Agonist., Celexa/Lexapro- Serotonin 5-HT1A Receptor Agonist., Zofran- Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor Agonist..Promethazine- Histamine H1-Receptor Antagonist. Flexeril- Serotonin 5HT2a Antagonist.

 

My self imposed Amino Acid Therapy: Tyrosine 500mg 1xday, Theanine 200 mg 1xday, & Taurine 500 mg 2x day. (All neurotransitter pre-cursors)- seems to have helped me immensely. And of course- eating healthy, including Black Beans for the oligosaccharides for gut health.

 

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the Art of Living. - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.

 

 

 


#8 LexAnger

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Posted 12 March 2017 - 08:34 PM

Thanks a lot rocking for your kind response! I know what you mean, still I'm very happy to hear it.
Lex
<p>2009 Mar.: lexapro 10mg for headache for 2 weeks.2009-2012: on and off 1/4 to 1/3 of 10mg2012 June--2013 Jan,: 1/4-1/3 of 10mg generic, bad jaw pain2013 Jan-Mar: 10 mg generic. severe jaw and head pain; Mar--Aug. started tapering (liquid ever since) from 10 to 5 (one step) then gradually down to 2.25 mg, first ever panic attack, severe head/jaw pain2013 Aug.: back to 2.75 mg; Nov: back to Brand Lex. 2.75mg -- 3mg, slight improvement with pain2014 June: stopped PPI, head pressure/numbness. up-dosed 4.5mg, severe reaction mental symptoms added on2014 Aug--2015 Aug: Micro taper down to 3.2mg, .025mg (<1%) cut holding 2-3 weeks.2015 Aug 15th, Accidental one dose of 4.2mg. worsening brain non-functional, swollen head, body, coma like, DR2016 Feb., started fast taper for the drug toxicity caused by the one dose of 4.2mg, dosing 10am through 11 pm everyday2/13--3.2mg, 3/15-- 2.9mg, 4/19-- 2.6mg, 6/26--2.2mg, 7/22 --1.9mg, 8/16--1.8mg,8/31--1.7m g, 9/13--1.6mg, 9/27--1.5mg, 10/8--1.4mg, 10/14--1.3mg, 11/1--1.2mg, 11/29--1.1mg, 12/12--1mg, 12/22--0.9mg2017: 1/7--0.8mg, 1/15--0.7mg, 1/17--0.6mg, 1/20--0.52, 1/21--0.4mg, 1/22--0.26, 1/23--0.2, sliding Down to 0.13mg by 2/13, then 0.07mg since 2/18, 0.06mg 2/20-3/17, 0.13mg 3/18

#9 rowinghippy

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Posted 12 March 2017 - 11:50 PM

I still get hungry and I’m inclined to overeat if I’m not careful. Somehow I’ve still managed to lose about three pants sizes. I’ve still a ways to go, but such is a nice feeling. On the antidepressants- even mild hunger felt like I starving to death.  In fact, there were times that I kept shoving food down my throat despite being so full that I was vomiting out food- but I was still famished- I couldn't achieve satiation.
Now- it’s not. It’s bearable. I feel hunger, and it’s easily satisfied.

 

It's really good to know your hunger is more normal now, as it's my main symptom and completely horrendous.

 

I'm curious how you were able to exercise in WD despite your incessant hunger? Always being low-key hungry, or worse, makes the idea of exercise miserable.


4/24/16: 20 mg citalopram

8/1/16: 15 mg

8/22/16: 10 mg

9/16/16: reinstated to 12 mg

12/1/16: 11 mg

2/20/17: 10 mg

 

Supplements: fish oil, multivitamin, digestive enzymes, probiotic, magnesium, glutamine, chinese herbs as needed


#10 Rockingchaircat

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Posted 13 March 2017 - 03:55 PM

 

I still get hungry and I’m inclined to overeat if I’m not careful. Somehow I’ve still managed to lose about three pants sizes. I’ve still a ways to go, but such is a nice feeling. On the antidepressants- even mild hunger felt like I starving to death.  In fact, there were times that I kept shoving food down my throat despite being so full that I was vomiting out food- but I was still famished- I couldn't achieve satiation.
Now- it’s not. It’s bearable. I feel hunger, and it’s easily satisfied.

 

It's really good to know your hunger is more normal now, as it's my main symptom and completely horrendous.

 

I'm curious how you were able to exercise in WD despite your incessant hunger? Always being low-key hungry, or worse, makes the idea of exercise miserable.

 

Long story short- I just did it anyways.

 

Now that's not to say I didn't feel the hunger- or for that matter able to do everything 'normally'. Oh no, not by a long shot. 

Sheer force of will. 

I remember one time I met a survivor of the Bataan Death March.  I often thought of what he went through, as tired as he was and as hungry as he was- he did it. It left him scarred- physically and spiritually. But he did it. "If he could do THAT, then how could I not do my bit of exercise?"- was my  thinking.

 

And often- during the exercises, it took me a lot longer to do them. And no few times- I didn't complete the "normal" set.  And in the beginning- I lasted only a few minutes. But the duration isn't important.

What is important- is doing something. Even if it's a mere one set of push-ups. And if that makes you feel exhausted- then BRAVO! Because that's one set of push-ups that needed to be done- and you did it.

That was my thinking.  And if one set of push-ups is all you can accomplish- then don't beat yourself up over it; goodness knows I beat myself up over it.  But beating yourself over it- is another form of despair.

One set of push-ups- is good. Anything you do- is good. And if you can do better- all  the better good! And if  you can do two sets of push-ups next time, even better good. And if you cannot do two sets the next- still good. You did one. 

Because anything is an accomplishment against' the despair and the hunger. You will overcome.  

 

The journey of a thousand miles- begins with a single step. And you just walk those thousand miles- each step at a time.

 

You will do this. I know you can.


1)Zoloft- 6/99 to 8/04 2)Escitalopram- 8/04 to 8/10 3)Citalopram 8/10 to 4/14 (C/T), 4)Paxil a week or so, 5)Wellbutrin a week or so, 6)Reinstated Citalopram- 9/14 to 7/15

Before Taper- Celexa/20 mg....Taper Start- 04/21/15- 15mg....05/26/15- 10 mg...06/22/15- 5 mg...07/18/15- 0mg. http://tinyurl.com/qjfoqe9 Ativan/Lorazepam use/taper 10/14 to 2/15- http://tinyurl.com/ljebp84

Baclofen- Intermittent use of from 2008 till 2014. Some use of Promethazine. Some use of Zofran. Clobetasol Propionate- for Lichen Planus. Some Flexeril use. 

Ativan- GABA,A receptor Agonist., Baclofen- GABA,B receptor Agonist., Celexa/Lexapro- Serotonin 5-HT1A Receptor Agonist., Zofran- Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor Agonist..Promethazine- Histamine H1-Receptor Antagonist. Flexeril- Serotonin 5HT2a Antagonist.

 

My self imposed Amino Acid Therapy: Tyrosine 500mg 1xday, Theanine 200 mg 1xday, & Taurine 500 mg 2x day. (All neurotransitter pre-cursors)- seems to have helped me immensely. And of course- eating healthy, including Black Beans for the oligosaccharides for gut health.

 

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the Art of Living. - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.

 

 

 


#11 lynx2121

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Posted 13 March 2017 - 04:34 PM

Rockingchaircat

Thank you for sharing your story of success.

I had to read it over several times - I am at the beginning of my journey and totally freaked out by the symptoms and the seemingly endless time it may take me to feel like a human being or have a life.  I am also very angry at myself for not having the common sense to have rejected taking the medications.  If I knew that there would have been hell to pay for the decision to take them -  as they seemed like a good idea at the time - I would never have taken them.  I wish I could say that the doctors pushed them and it was all their fault.  When you find a "miracle" drug which can calm you down in 15 minutes - the benzos or one which cures your depression in 8 weeks - you need to ask why we never asked - could they have long-term negative consequences that make the original anxiety and depression less painful than the withdrawals. 

Good luck as you finish your journey and your healing.


prescribed Prozac for Fibromyalgia/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome in 1995

switched to Paxil in 1998, Elavil was added

switched to Effexor in 2004

tried to get off Paxil in 2001 - could not

tried to get off Effexor in 2007 - could not

was on Prozac and Elavil from 2008 to 2015

thought i withdrew from Prozac and Elavil without too much agony

now realized that although I tapered....I am having horrible symptoms

thinking about reinstating as I write this....

 


#12 Cheeky

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Posted 13 March 2017 - 11:10 PM

I really needed to read this today thankyou


-1995 to 2014 started at 20mg for 10 years and slowly increased it to 50mg Paxil-2014 8th of October 25mg Seraquel Started -2014 Tapered of Aropax from Oct 16th to 22nd Nov in only 1 week-2014 Oct 25th started Cymbalta on 30mg fo 1 week Nov 7th 60mg Cymbalta for 2 weeks and Nov 25th -28th 90mg Cymbalta - plus 50mg Seraquel-Tapered of Cymbalta from Nov 28th to 7th Dec - started Zoloft 50mg on the 8th of Dec-12th Dec 75mg Zoloft 16th Dec 100mg Zoloft and still on the 50mg Seraquel-2015 6th Jan 25mg Seraquel 15th Jan 125mg Zoloft and 50mg seraquel-21st Jan 20mg Paxil plus 50mg Seraquel 24th of Jan 30mg Paxil 27th of Jan 40mg Paxil<p>-started Seraquel Tapper Febuary 24th to 43.7mg then March 29th 37.5mg of seraquel May 6th 31.25mg May 28th 25mg4th Nov 21mg Seraquel 14th feb 12.5 Seraquel and still on 40mg PaxilCurrently 12.5mg Seraquel1st may started my Paxil tapper 5% 38mg 16th June 5% 36.8mg 23rd July 35.5mg August 6th 35mg
August 23rd 34.5mg currently 19th October 40mg Paxil and 50mg Seraquel at night 2nd November 43mg Seraquel

17th March 2017 39.5mg  Paxil and 43mg Seraquel


#13 Rockingchaircat

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Posted 14 March 2017 - 05:38 AM

Rockingchaircat

Thank you for sharing your story of success.

I had to read it over several times - I am at the beginning of my journey and totally freaked out by the symptoms and the seemingly endless time it may take me to feel like a human being or have a life.  I am also very angry at myself for not having the common sense to have rejected taking the medications.  If I knew that there would have been hell to pay for the decision to take them -  as they seemed like a good idea at the time - I would never have taken them.  I wish I could say that the doctors pushed them and it was all their fault.  When you find a "miracle" drug which can calm you down in 15 minutes - the benzos or one which cures your depression in 8 weeks - you need to ask why we never asked - could they have long-term negative consequences that make the original anxiety and depression less painful than the withdrawals. 

Good luck as you finish your journey and your healing.

I'm sorry that you're on that end of the withdrawal process. But someday you will be writing your own success story.

Try not to think of it all- in the whole. For me- it literally was: One-Day-At-A-Time.  There is only The Now.

Sometimes I wonder if the Docs do this spit on purpose.  That they're all sadistic bastards and are secretly enjoying our suffering.

And I wish you all of the best in your journey.


1)Zoloft- 6/99 to 8/04 2)Escitalopram- 8/04 to 8/10 3)Citalopram 8/10 to 4/14 (C/T), 4)Paxil a week or so, 5)Wellbutrin a week or so, 6)Reinstated Citalopram- 9/14 to 7/15

Before Taper- Celexa/20 mg....Taper Start- 04/21/15- 15mg....05/26/15- 10 mg...06/22/15- 5 mg...07/18/15- 0mg. http://tinyurl.com/qjfoqe9 Ativan/Lorazepam use/taper 10/14 to 2/15- http://tinyurl.com/ljebp84

Baclofen- Intermittent use of from 2008 till 2014. Some use of Promethazine. Some use of Zofran. Clobetasol Propionate- for Lichen Planus. Some Flexeril use. 

Ativan- GABA,A receptor Agonist., Baclofen- GABA,B receptor Agonist., Celexa/Lexapro- Serotonin 5-HT1A Receptor Agonist., Zofran- Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor Agonist..Promethazine- Histamine H1-Receptor Antagonist. Flexeril- Serotonin 5HT2a Antagonist.

 

My self imposed Amino Acid Therapy: Tyrosine 500mg 1xday, Theanine 200 mg 1xday, & Taurine 500 mg 2x day. (All neurotransitter pre-cursors)- seems to have helped me immensely. And of course- eating healthy, including Black Beans for the oligosaccharides for gut health.

 

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the Art of Living. - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.

 

 

 


#14 Rockingchaircat

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Posted 14 March 2017 - 05:38 AM

I really needed to read this today thankyou

You're welcome.

 

You too, will write your success story someday.


1)Zoloft- 6/99 to 8/04 2)Escitalopram- 8/04 to 8/10 3)Citalopram 8/10 to 4/14 (C/T), 4)Paxil a week or so, 5)Wellbutrin a week or so, 6)Reinstated Citalopram- 9/14 to 7/15

Before Taper- Celexa/20 mg....Taper Start- 04/21/15- 15mg....05/26/15- 10 mg...06/22/15- 5 mg...07/18/15- 0mg. http://tinyurl.com/qjfoqe9 Ativan/Lorazepam use/taper 10/14 to 2/15- http://tinyurl.com/ljebp84

Baclofen- Intermittent use of from 2008 till 2014. Some use of Promethazine. Some use of Zofran. Clobetasol Propionate- for Lichen Planus. Some Flexeril use. 

Ativan- GABA,A receptor Agonist., Baclofen- GABA,B receptor Agonist., Celexa/Lexapro- Serotonin 5-HT1A Receptor Agonist., Zofran- Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor Agonist..Promethazine- Histamine H1-Receptor Antagonist. Flexeril- Serotonin 5HT2a Antagonist.

 

My self imposed Amino Acid Therapy: Tyrosine 500mg 1xday, Theanine 200 mg 1xday, & Taurine 500 mg 2x day. (All neurotransitter pre-cursors)- seems to have helped me immensely. And of course- eating healthy, including Black Beans for the oligosaccharides for gut health.

 

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the Art of Living. - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.

 

 

 


#15 Madeleine

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Posted 14 March 2017 - 12:34 PM

Thank you for sharing your story.


March 15/2017: 3.75 zyprexa; January 16/2017: 6.25 mg; down from 10 mg December 2016
200 zoloft. Tapering that next.


#16 mammaP

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Posted 22 March 2017 - 09:58 AM

Hi RCC, thank you for sharing your success story in so much detail, it's been quite a journey!   :)


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

 

See how to create a signature here http://survivingantidepressants.org/index.php?/topic/12364-please-put-your-withdrawal-history-in-your-signature/

 

Many drugs for many years, prescribed diazepam first 1973, took occasionally. 3 or 4 tricyclics  for short periods.

1993 had a breakdown leading to 10 years of drug experiments with all classes of psych drugs.

2002  effexor. 

Tapered by counting beads from 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 

 

Also tapered atenolol and omeprazole Dec 2013 - May 2014

 

Tapering tramadol, Feb 2015 100mg , March 2015 50mg -hold- Feb2016 46mg  March 8 2016 45 April 44mg  May 11  43mg June 14 42mg

Taking fish oil, magnesium, pro biotic.

 

My story http://survivinganti...king-in/page-33

 

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

 

Following every sunset is a brand new day


#17 Rockingchaircat

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Posted 23 March 2017 - 05:47 PM

I think I passed a kidney stone last night.

 

It may be time for me to start weening off of the aminos then.

Of course, I've also been losing a bit more of weight of late as well. And I've not been drinking quite so much water either. I've stopped taking the calcium supplements several weeks ago. 

 

More research.

 

Oh the kidney stone- started at the upper mid back, felt like I threw out my back again, but only on the right side. And it traveled down, and I stopped feeling it once it went past my pelvic arch.

 

A bit painful yes.  It did wake me up out of sleep a couple times.


1)Zoloft- 6/99 to 8/04 2)Escitalopram- 8/04 to 8/10 3)Citalopram 8/10 to 4/14 (C/T), 4)Paxil a week or so, 5)Wellbutrin a week or so, 6)Reinstated Citalopram- 9/14 to 7/15

Before Taper- Celexa/20 mg....Taper Start- 04/21/15- 15mg....05/26/15- 10 mg...06/22/15- 5 mg...07/18/15- 0mg. http://tinyurl.com/qjfoqe9 Ativan/Lorazepam use/taper 10/14 to 2/15- http://tinyurl.com/ljebp84

Baclofen- Intermittent use of from 2008 till 2014. Some use of Promethazine. Some use of Zofran. Clobetasol Propionate- for Lichen Planus. Some Flexeril use. 

Ativan- GABA,A receptor Agonist., Baclofen- GABA,B receptor Agonist., Celexa/Lexapro- Serotonin 5-HT1A Receptor Agonist., Zofran- Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor Agonist..Promethazine- Histamine H1-Receptor Antagonist. Flexeril- Serotonin 5HT2a Antagonist.

 

My self imposed Amino Acid Therapy: Tyrosine 500mg 1xday, Theanine 200 mg 1xday, & Taurine 500 mg 2x day. (All neurotransitter pre-cursors)- seems to have helped me immensely. And of course- eating healthy, including Black Beans for the oligosaccharides for gut health.

 

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the Art of Living. - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.

 

 

 


#18 AliG

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Posted 24 March 2017 - 12:46 AM

Hi RCC.  Well you did it !  Congratulations. I'm so happy for you and the progress you've made. It has been quite a journey that has tested you at times but you have shown strength and fortitude not to mention an optimistic outlook during this whole withdrawal process.

 

You beat me to it with your success story but I feel like I'm hot on your heels and hopefully it won't be too much longer before I write my own story.

 

As you said it's one day at a time but it's amazing how quickly all of those individual days tend to add up to a real recovery. That elusive light at the end of the tunnel starts to change from being just a dull flicker in the beginning to shining very brightly as healing happens. 


Many SSRI's &SSNRI's over 20 years . Zoloft - 7 years .  Effexor, Lexapro, Prozac, Cymbalta, Celexa, Pristiq, Valdoxan, Mianserin and many more - on and off . No tapering. Cold turkey -  Valdoxan - end of May 2014

 

                                                            Drug free since May, 2014
.
             "Find a place inside where there's joy and the joy will burn out the pain" - Joseph Campbell


#19 triplem15

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Posted 24 March 2017 - 03:57 PM

RCC, may I ask you a question? Did you find the lawn work taxing on your CNS?? Not sure how much to push yet I believe the answer is listen to my body???
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.

#20 Rockingchaircat

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Posted 25 March 2017 - 07:16 AM

Hi RCC.  Well you did it !  Congratulations. I'm so happy for you and the progress you've made. It has been quite a journey that has tested you at times but you have shown strength and fortitude not to mention an optimistic outlook during this whole withdrawal process.

 

You beat me to it with your success story but I feel like I'm hot on your heels and hopefully it won't be too much longer before I write my own story.

 

As you said it's one day at a time but it's amazing how quickly all of those individual days tend to add up to a real recovery. That elusive light at the end of the tunnel starts to change from being just a dull flicker in the beginning to shining very brightly as healing happens. 

Thank you for your kind words and support AliG- you and those like you, helped in your way. The words of support had a positive effect. And I too look forward to seeing your success story here alongside my own.


1)Zoloft- 6/99 to 8/04 2)Escitalopram- 8/04 to 8/10 3)Citalopram 8/10 to 4/14 (C/T), 4)Paxil a week or so, 5)Wellbutrin a week or so, 6)Reinstated Citalopram- 9/14 to 7/15

Before Taper- Celexa/20 mg....Taper Start- 04/21/15- 15mg....05/26/15- 10 mg...06/22/15- 5 mg...07/18/15- 0mg. http://tinyurl.com/qjfoqe9 Ativan/Lorazepam use/taper 10/14 to 2/15- http://tinyurl.com/ljebp84

Baclofen- Intermittent use of from 2008 till 2014. Some use of Promethazine. Some use of Zofran. Clobetasol Propionate- for Lichen Planus. Some Flexeril use. 

Ativan- GABA,A receptor Agonist., Baclofen- GABA,B receptor Agonist., Celexa/Lexapro- Serotonin 5-HT1A Receptor Agonist., Zofran- Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor Agonist..Promethazine- Histamine H1-Receptor Antagonist. Flexeril- Serotonin 5HT2a Antagonist.

 

My self imposed Amino Acid Therapy: Tyrosine 500mg 1xday, Theanine 200 mg 1xday, & Taurine 500 mg 2x day. (All neurotransitter pre-cursors)- seems to have helped me immensely. And of course- eating healthy, including Black Beans for the oligosaccharides for gut health.

 

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the Art of Living. - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.

 

 

 


#21 Rockingchaircat

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Posted 25 March 2017 - 07:20 AM

RCC, may I ask you a question? Did you find the lawn work taxing on your CNS?? Not sure how much to push yet I believe the answer is listen to my body???

Yes it was. Which is why when I did it- my body and I had a constant negotiation session. I kept pushing for a bit longer- my body let me know when it just simply had enough and wasn't going to do any more than that-thank-you-very-much.

 

Yes, listen to your body. Because your body will let you know if you've gone a bit too far. What used to (then) take me an hour, took me pretty much all day. (Or on the course of several days).  But lawn care is another form of exercise that burns calories and gets you outside. It's fair to push yourself just a bit more. 


1)Zoloft- 6/99 to 8/04 2)Escitalopram- 8/04 to 8/10 3)Citalopram 8/10 to 4/14 (C/T), 4)Paxil a week or so, 5)Wellbutrin a week or so, 6)Reinstated Citalopram- 9/14 to 7/15

Before Taper- Celexa/20 mg....Taper Start- 04/21/15- 15mg....05/26/15- 10 mg...06/22/15- 5 mg...07/18/15- 0mg. http://tinyurl.com/qjfoqe9 Ativan/Lorazepam use/taper 10/14 to 2/15- http://tinyurl.com/ljebp84

Baclofen- Intermittent use of from 2008 till 2014. Some use of Promethazine. Some use of Zofran. Clobetasol Propionate- for Lichen Planus. Some Flexeril use. 

Ativan- GABA,A receptor Agonist., Baclofen- GABA,B receptor Agonist., Celexa/Lexapro- Serotonin 5-HT1A Receptor Agonist., Zofran- Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor Agonist..Promethazine- Histamine H1-Receptor Antagonist. Flexeril- Serotonin 5HT2a Antagonist.

 

My self imposed Amino Acid Therapy: Tyrosine 500mg 1xday, Theanine 200 mg 1xday, & Taurine 500 mg 2x day. (All neurotransitter pre-cursors)- seems to have helped me immensely. And of course- eating healthy, including Black Beans for the oligosaccharides for gut health.

 

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the Art of Living. - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.

 

 

 


#22 triplem15

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Posted 26 March 2017 - 10:10 AM

Thank you RCC. Helpful to know, I am so concerned about pushing too much and yet I believe I must do some safe? Pushing.
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.

#23 Rockingchaircat

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Posted 08 May 2017 - 05:39 AM

I did have a flare up of symptoms when I went on vacation. But even they were of a mild intensity and short lived. About the biggest things was some mania and subsequent depression. I'd discovered a bit of fiction that spoke to me. I also discovered that it's got some fan fiction that can be submitted to it. I've been working on my own stories on that, and it's good to get my writing skills working again after so long.

 

Sleep has been an issue. I fall asleep for an hour, stay awake for an hour and it's like that all night long. I find myself nodding off at work. My circadian rhythm is shot, but it is starting to improve a bit.

Still all worth it.


1)Zoloft- 6/99 to 8/04 2)Escitalopram- 8/04 to 8/10 3)Citalopram 8/10 to 4/14 (C/T), 4)Paxil a week or so, 5)Wellbutrin a week or so, 6)Reinstated Citalopram- 9/14 to 7/15

Before Taper- Celexa/20 mg....Taper Start- 04/21/15- 15mg....05/26/15- 10 mg...06/22/15- 5 mg...07/18/15- 0mg. http://tinyurl.com/qjfoqe9 Ativan/Lorazepam use/taper 10/14 to 2/15- http://tinyurl.com/ljebp84

Baclofen- Intermittent use of from 2008 till 2014. Some use of Promethazine. Some use of Zofran. Clobetasol Propionate- for Lichen Planus. Some Flexeril use. 

Ativan- GABA,A receptor Agonist., Baclofen- GABA,B receptor Agonist., Celexa/Lexapro- Serotonin 5-HT1A Receptor Agonist., Zofran- Serotonin 5-HT3 Receptor Agonist..Promethazine- Histamine H1-Receptor Antagonist. Flexeril- Serotonin 5HT2a Antagonist.

 

My self imposed Amino Acid Therapy: Tyrosine 500mg 1xday, Theanine 200 mg 1xday, & Taurine 500 mg 2x day. (All neurotransitter pre-cursors)- seems to have helped me immensely. And of course- eating healthy, including Black Beans for the oligosaccharides for gut health.

 

The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of trick learned while mastering the Art of Living. - Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning.

 

 

 


#24 doggiemama

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Posted 09 May 2017 - 10:15 AM

RCC so nice to hear how you doing . Not happy that u not feeling great.

#25 Pepita

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Posted 16 May 2017 - 12:57 AM

Congratulations on your very successful recovery story and thank you for the tips:) I still have some Tyrosin laying around from when I  just went into WD. I bought it after researching about Aminos but then was too afraid to mess up again whatever healing process was going on:) Maybe I´ll take them now as I am not on the depths of WD anymore.
Wishing you all the best on your further way to full recovery.
 


2005-2006: Cipralex 5 mg

2009-2010: Cipralex 5 mg

2012-2015: Cipralex 5mg, 10mg 

tapered 10mg-7.5mg-5mg-2,5-0 (I always waited for a few weeks on the current dosage until I felt stable. Steps were too big I realized too late)

Completely drug free since August 2015


#26 JanCarol

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Posted 23 May 2017 - 10:56 PM

Hey RCC - Congratulations on your Success Story!

 

When an old warrior such as yourself (I'm talking veteran of the military here) finds that this withdrawal thing was the hardest thing you've ever done - it gives me pause.  Because Old Warriors such as yourself should be treated well, not drugged and stuck in a corner to rot.

 

You took a Warrior's approach to withdrawal, too.  I love your advice about every day sunlight, every day exercise, every day fresh air, even if it's just a little.

 

I would love to see a chart of your windows and waves - you reported it very thoroughly here at SA, but I guess I just want to see a 600 day picture - how deep were the valleys, how long were the windows.  But even though I would personally find it fascinating (I'll bet others would too!) that's asking too much!

The hobbies are brilliant - I just learned a term for it:  hedonic rehabilitation = learning to feel normal, human pleasure. (that goes with the ahem, orgasms, too).

 

THIS is a candidate for "Best of SA":

 

And there were some phrases that helped motivate me through many a hard day- and they’re still something I occasionally have to fall back on when things get tough mentally:

1)     Be Here Now

2)     Accept

3)     Pain is Mandatory- Suffering is Optional

These three phrases tie in with each other.
#1 Be Here Now; is the motivation that you are only in the now- and for you to not fixate upon the timeline of your withdrawal. The past is done, the future will come, but it’s best to focus on the immediate now and what you can do with it.
#2 is about the immediate now- refusing to accept what’s going on in withdrawal will just make it worse. By Accepting that this is the way things are- you actually gain a sort of control over it all
# 3- There is the Pain of Withdrawal- you can find ways to cope with the pain. Suffering is what comes about when you refuse to accept what is. You can choose to not be the person subjected to an endless misery of withdrawal. Yes I was in Withdrawal- but I choose to be more than a person in withdrawal- I chose instead to try and enjoy life as much as I could in between the wave crests.
In both my benzo and antidepressant withdrawal blogs- I griped something fierce about it all. For that I make no apology. For I also chose to try and grab onto whatever little pleasures and triumphs I could garner when I was able to.

 

Which I will refer to your thread when I'm online for a little longer than I am tonight.
 

It's been a pleasure to read your thread - your language is as colorful as your Avatar!

 

So - you "get it" when I say (as I often do)

 

I hope you see the sun 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!


#27 manymoretodays

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Posted 24 May 2017 - 04:55 AM

Thank you Rockingchaircat and JC for drawing attention on back to this story.

 

Rockingchair, 

 

So you started experimenting with supplements after you were no longer taking AD's or benzo's?  And wow, amazing on the continuing 40+ work hours.......what kind of work do you do?.......I mean, just in a general sense, if you don't mind saying.

 

I love your black bean suggestion for some of us.  I have a great recipe for some black bean tacos with cilantro that I shall now make this week! 

 

And yup.......those relationships can sure keep us going.......I am so glad that your nuclear family survived intact as well.  Hoo boy........between my ex husband and son, I really do have a decent job, doing what I can, what has been done for me by so many others......... having recently discovered that the ex is really struggling.  My son......also some of the usual challenges of a young adult who did not immediately launch into full independence quickly.  It is so great to be capable of Momhood again!

 

I can relate to much of your other coping skills as well.

 

Thank you again for your summary and I will go take a look at your introduction as well.

 

Yes, it all has been worth it for me as well.

 

Peace, love, healing/recovery, and growth,

 

and manymoretodays :) (and seriously.....I used to bristle at smiley faces)


Started with psycho meds circa 1988 I think 27 or 28 total.

AD's, antpsychotics, antiseizure mood stabilizers. Lithium, lamictal,benzos, and stimulants. Some med. for narcolepsy once?, Gabapentin........probably more.  Ask me?......I probably was on it.  Haphazard W/D's by Dr. recommend or uneducated self.

10/2014- off Lexapro--had been on highest dose 10 mg. then 5 mg. for a couple of years, went from 5 mg. to 3 mg. liquid and then CT in hospital(voluntary).  I got out of the hospital on a combination of low dose adderal salts x1/day and trileptal 150mg. x2/day.

5/28/2015-off Adderal salts 2.5mg. (I had been on that since hospital 10/2014)

12/2015---just holding, holding, holding, with trileptal/oxcarb at 75 mg. 1/2 tab at hs.  My last psycho med ever!

 

3/21/2016---I did some unwise updosing of trileptal/oxcarbazepine with some stressful stuff......doubled the above dose x2 during this last wave but began liquifying again and on approximately 68mg. starting today.  11/12//2016 24 mg. oxcarbazepine  12/9/2016 off oxcarbazepine/trileptal!!!! :) optimistic

Omega3's,EPA +DHA= approx. 1200/day. Magnesium citrate orally,diluted in a liter of H2O(that I can shake up.....it usually dissolves more completely as the water gets down to room temperature) and/or Epsom salt baths prn.   Vit. C and E.  B12, melatonin 3mcg., and bioidentical hormones sublingually.  Trace mineral drops.  L-lysine.  L-methylfolate=300 mcg. Totally ready for a good long window to hit soon and getting better strings of full days and partial days along the way.  Definite improvement overall since I first arrived on the SA survivor ship.  Herb and alcohol free since 5/15/2016.

 


#28 Tootsieroll

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Posted 24 May 2017 - 06:32 AM

RockingChairCat- I was hoping to take a course of theanine. What was your experience with theanine? I started yesterday and I find it causes me to be tired during the day at 125mg but wasn't sure if I could take it at night as I thought it raises dopamine levels. You mentioned it raises serotonin levels so now I'm confused. Does it inadvertantly affect those levels? Do you take it along with your taurine? Maybe I can alternate between the two, that way I can avoid a taper off supplements. Thanks.

Ps. I'm looking to eliminate the residual fear I have that leads to heart palpitations. Which would be a better option? Theanine, taurine, ashwagandha?
<p>10 years of ssri and finally tapered off in 2 years. Off Celexa by jan/28/2014 and off benzos by March/6th/2014 after only two months use and still experiencing withdrawal symptoms.