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Aria love your work, you're a legend!!!

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What a fantastic inspiration you are! thank you for your frank and moving account which I know many people will draw strength from.

 

My story is as follows, I was in a very distressing and tortured business partnership that was a nightmare for 11 years. Instead of doing the tough and courageous move and removing him from the company I capitulated and became a battered partner (Mentally). For 11 years my confidence, pride and dignity was destroyed and systematically removed.

I decided that I would go and see the doctor which was a huge mistake as I got hooked on Anti-depressants and Xanax  that he prescribed me for five years. I found it hard to have a life on these drugs and 1 year ago I flipped and lost my cool with my partner. I immediately left and within a week set up a new business which is really flying. One month after I left I decided to stop the Anti -depressants and from that day to this I have never taken any. The really tough one was Xanax and it took a further 12 months before my inner spirit said enough is enough Stop right now!. It was really tough for the first week but I am now 4 weeks into zero Xanax and I have definitely managed to break the cycle.

What has changed

1 year no anti depressants means I have a much better love life and my clarity of thought is back to its best.

No more side effects such as suicidal and harmful thoughts. I also feel so much more confident and strong mentally.

 

Coming off of Xanax was much harder but I stuck to it and now I can live a normal life without sleeping all weekend from morning till night.

I hope that someone reads this and realises that you can move on and live a normal and happy life without the dirty little secret that we all carried around with us.

.

Does somebody knows this guy???

 

I think this message in itself is a success story.... 

 

Aria Good luck in your new life...

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Wow, Aria, you've really been through it.  And I have to say how inspiring it is to me.  My simple little problems and I ask myself daily:  can I do it?  SHOULD I do it? and here you are, on the other side, telling us about the reality of it.  Not only can it be done, there is "the other side," we can come out on (after the hell part, of course).  Thank you for showing me "the other side."

 

I agree with compsports, you were lucky to find that neurologist.  Most doctors don't believe "mental patients."  Doc, I have strep throat. "No, it's just a virus," no really - and this goes for any number of ailments. 

 

It is worse than being an obese smoker (who doctors also frequently dismiss, because it's "my own fault").  Worse than being old.  There's almost a little terror in their eyes when you say "bipolar" or something is in your chart that says "mad as a march hare" so that everything out of your mouth becomes suspect.  So that neurologist was a gift, a boon, I'd even say, a miracle!

 

I have a question about your graduated cylinders as you posted on my thread:  do you use them for making up liquid?  I've seen them  with eye droppers and I wondered.

 

Thank you so much for sharing your story.

Yes. I had a GP who never listened to ANYTHING I told him. He treated all people with "mental illness" that way. I went to him with a severe cystula--reaching more than 6 inches up my anus. He said it was a mild yeast infection. I almost died from that. Sad thing was I had had the same issue a decade before. I told the doctor. It's common knowledge that cysts like that frequently reappear. Another time I had caught bronchitus because my sick nephew coughed in my face. "Severely mentally ill monster" though I am, there was no way I was going to push the little guy off my lap or tell him to get out of my face. Like a good aunt I chose exposure to the virus instead. Dr. Bigot saw me twice. Each time he said there was no infection and sent me home with allergy medicines. Fired him and got help from a GNP before my bronchitus went into pneumonia.

 

When I told my parents I thought he was a bigot, they accused me of paranoia. Then they asked if I had been taking my antipsychotics. I hadn't in over 6 months, actually. I have been "compliant" for over 20 years though, so they don't suspect--they just ask me from time to time, as they have since my "diagnosis"-- in order to insult me and perhaps make me question my own judgment and sanity.

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I would like to update you on some improvements. I'm not too sure if I had mentioned that I had started knitting again but only basic stitching. I just finished several knitted items using some pretty intricate patterns and I am overwhelmed that I can do this now. I can now read any kind of book when before I had to labor to read one page at a time. My mind was so fragmented from the drugs that it was very hard for me to understand what was written. Simple things that I did before are coming back to me. Some people might think how is that an improvement? It means that my brain is still healing. I was a total wreck after years and years of heavy polypharmacy and yes I tapered off of everything but I was so injured by it. No one can take neurotoxins and not have they're nervous system affected or in my case damaged.

 

The years of relentless Akathisia had me unable to even sit in a chair without squirming. The pharmacy inserts called Akathisia "restlessness" but it is a non-stop intense urge to move, to wiggle, to not be able to sit still, to not be able to lay down in bed, to constantly have to pace. Akathisia causes overwhelming fear, you feel like you can't catch your breath, your heart is beating a thousand times a minutes, you have intense bouts of crying, you're profusely sweating, your grimacing, your whole body is in motion and if it's not then it feels like something is exploding inside of you with nowhere to go. I don't call that restlessness I call that Hell. When I would describe any of this to my prescribing psychiatrist he always said he had never heard of this before and it had to be me becming sicker. Everything was me becoming more profoundly mentally ill and the psychiatrist acted like he didn't have a clue? How can someone give you drug after drug after drug and not notice? That is the crux of Psychiatry, they don't notice? I don't know if they care? On a few sites they have said Seroquel and trazodone are the absolute worst to cause Akathisia and I was on both at the same time for years.

 

Not long ago someone put a lady in touch with me who was questioning her psychiatric diagnosis. We have emailed extensively and as you can imagine she is quite angry at almost 20 years of taking neurotoxins. She said it was like being raped and no one wanted you to discuss it? I had one or two people I could discuss what happened to me with psychiatry. They had no idea what it was like but they did listen. Many times I wish I could open up to more people about what happened to me with psychiatry but I'm afraid to. I had already encountered unbelievable stigma from the medical community and it was all I could do to protect myself. I know what it is like to be treated as being "mentally ill" by physicians who have seen my psychiatric diagnosis.

 

Every now and then I get a private message from somebody wanting to know if they will ever heal and who will they be once they're off the drugs? I take care in writing my answer because we heal at different rates and we were on different drugs for different lengths of time. I am glad there are sites like this who offer help and support others who want to understand what has happened to them being on psychiatric drugs and how to taper off of them.

 

I’ve been going to several sites that deal with people harmed by psychiatry. There are people like me who went to a psychiatrist because they were having trouble sleeping, work issues or anxiety and ended up being drugged out of their minds told they were profoundly mentally ill needing massive amounts of psychiatric drugs forever. We found out that this was not true and in fact it was the psychiatric drugs causing us to have an altered perception, strange behavior and unusual thinking. We somehow tapered off all the psychiatric drugs and have gone on to have a life we were told we would never never have. My life is far from perfect but it's one I wake up to every day grateful I have a second chance.

 

Aria

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Hello Aria. A great big beautiful congratulations to you. WOW, what an accomplishment you are!!!! I have been reading some of your thread and from a few years ago. You are amazing!!!!! You are an inspiration and a light. Aria, if I may ask you a couple of questions??? My name is Jamie. I am tapering one drug that my body has become very dependent on, bupropion. My journey so far has been tough. Began with very poor tapering advise and then a crash, a small increase in dose and now waiting for good and steady. I believe I could learn so much from you. Aria, were you ever on an antipsychotic medication? If so, how long? I think I understand that you tapered several drugs over two years, is that correct? Then I understand life was very difficult for you, even more so as you went into the full blown WD. What I would like to know is , some kind of time frame for progress. I know you began by gardening and found it very therapeutic. I know reading became very important to you again. But, what wise words would you give to all of us regarding healing. You sound so well now, you have healed so much, but I understand it has taken you many years. Can you elaborate some on the years? What happened, how were you? What helped, what healed? You also mention now you have great peace, when at one time that was stolen from you. How did that peace transpire over time? I guess I personally would really like to hear more detail of your healing journey. I am hoping you can spend more time telling us more. You are amazing!!!! I am very interested. Thank you.

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Hi Jamie,

I was on numerous kinds of antipsychotics over the years including Thorazine, stelazine, Seroquel, Zyprexa, Trilafon and I don't remember the others? They were always mixed up in a combo with at least two antidepressants, Xanax or Klonopin and maybe a sleeping pill? Throw in various Lamictal, lithium, Depakote. The psychiatrist was forever looking for the perfect drug combination when in fact it was the drugs themselves that were making me bizarre. I read in my psychiatric notes I was on 10 milligrams of Xanax a day to control my "nervousness" which turned out to be Akathisia. Reading my psychiatric notes I know the psychiatrist jerked me off this amount disregarding any withdrawals I might have experienced.

 

What got me on my journey to taper off the drugs? Several things happen within a two month time. The first was a chance consultation with a neurologist who I'd gone to for pain and he told me I had the worst case of Akathisia he had seen in his entire medical career. I had no idea what Akathisia was? I got a copy of my hospital medical notes and the psychiatrist had put in there I was psychotic which meant all the other physicians saw this. It was awful to hear a hospital doctor I've never met before say horrible comments to me about me being mentally ill when I was in the hospital for acute pancreatitis not a psychotic episode? I happened to be in a book store and picked up Peter Breggin's books Toxic Drugs. When I read it I realized the psychiatric drugs work causing me to be so disoriented and having these strange physical and emotional issues? A light went off in my head that I had to get off these drugs no matter what and without much support or online help I got off all the drugs I was on. In my haste I tried tapering off two drugs at a time which I don't recommend but I was insistent to be drug free and never have to see the psychiatrist again who stole years of my life and almost killed me.

 

I'm not too sure what I did the first year I was tapering because it was a blur. It was like a dark curtain was lifted and I started to have interest for the first time in many years about activities I did before. I kept trying to read books and my brain was just so fried I couldn't comprehend enough to even read a few pages. I had stopped all my other activities like gardening and knitting. My sister said I basically sat in the house with my curtains drawn and had no interest because I was drugged into a stupor (this was the years I was on Seroquel or Zyprexa). I'm now having fun with a knitting group and have a variety of containers full of herbs and flowers in the front and the back yard. I try not to take myself too seriously and spend time solo many days because it's comforting. I don't mind interacting with people and I try my darndest not to be around people who are negative or mean. I don't have a hundred percent answer on how I got where I am but I considered being psychiatric drug free such an accomplishment for me. To have my friends and family now know the psychiatric drugs made me bananas. Maybe part of it is I'm older, a senior and appreciate the few years I have left?

 

The more information that is out there for people to realize how dangerous psychiatric drugs are is important. I had no informed consent from the psychiatrist and when I mentioned my changes in behavior or perception he kept saying he never heard of it. People are finding out an antidepressant is no simple pill and the dangers of it. I'm still dumbfounded by the drug combinations I was on and it was no wonder I couldn't function. I was driving the car all this time when I was legally drunk from prescription drugs. There are days I'm not able to leave the house because of the neuromuscular illness but I can still function enough to have some productivity.

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Hi Jamie,

I was on numerous kinds of antipsychotics over the years including Thorazine, stelazine, Seroquel, Zyprexa, Trilafon and I don't remember the others? They were always mixed up in a combo with at least two antidepressants, Xanax or Klonopin and maybe a sleeping pill? Throw in various Lamictal, lithium, Depakote. The psychiatrist was forever looking for the perfect drug combination when in fact it was the drugs themselves that were making me bizarre. I read in my psychiatric notes I was on 10 milligrams of Xanax a day to control my "nervousness" which turned out to be Akathisia. Reading my psychiatric notes I know the psychiatrist jerked me off this amount disregarding any withdrawals I might have experienced.

 

What got me on my journey to taper off the drugs? Several things happen within a two month time. The first was a chance consultation with a neurologist who I'd gone to for pain and he told me I had the worst case of Akathisia he had seen in his entire medical career. I had no idea what Akathisia was? I got a copy of my hospital medical notes and the psychiatrist had put in there I was psychotic which meant all the other physicians saw this. It was awful to hear a hospital doctor I've never met before say horrible comments to me about me being mentally ill when I was in the hospital for acute pancreatitis not a psychotic episode? I happened to be in a book store and picked up Peter Breggin's books Toxic Drugs. When I read it I realized the psychiatric drugs work causing me to be so disoriented and having these strange physical and emotional issues? A light went off in my head that I had to get off these drugs no matter what and without much support or online help I got off all the drugs I was on. In my haste I tried tapering off two drugs at a time which I don't recommend but I was insistent to be drug free and never have to see the psychiatrist again who stole years of my life and almost killed me.

 

I'm not too sure what I did the first year I was tapering because it was a blur. It was like a dark curtain was lifted and I started to have interest for the first time in many years about activities I did before. I kept trying to read books and my brain was just so fried I couldn't comprehend enough to even read a few pages. I had stopped all my other activities like gardening and knitting. My sister said I basically sat in the house with my curtains drawn and had no interest because I was drugged into a stupor (this was the years I was on Seroquel or Zyprexa). I'm now having fun with a knitting group and have a variety of containers full of herbs and flowers in the front and the back yard. I try not to take myself too seriously and spend time solo many days because it's comforting. I don't mind interacting with people and I try my darndest not to be around people who are negative or mean. I don't have a hundred percent answer on how I got where I am but I considered being psychiatric drug free such an accomplishment for me. To have my friends and family now know the psychiatric drugs made me bananas. Maybe part of it is I'm older, a senior and appreciate the few years I have left?

 

The more information that is out there for people to realize how dangerous psychiatric drugs are is important. I had no informed consent from the psychiatrist and when I mentioned my changes in behavior or perception he kept saying he never heard of it. People are finding out an antidepressant is no simple pill and the dangers of it. I'm still dumbfounded by the drug combinations I was on and it was no wonder I couldn't function. I was driving the car all this time when I was legally drunk from prescription drugs. There are days I'm not able to leave the house because of the neuromuscular illness but I can still function enough to have some productivity.

 

hi thanks for your story Aria ,as a human I apologise  for these so called doctors .I cant wait to get off my drug its so painful trying too ,your story empowers me too never give up.  

respect PB

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Aria, thank you so much for your reply. Would it be too bold to ask you how old you are now? And how old were you when you came off?

 

Now, let me say this, it is incomprehensible to me why you were ever put on all these drugs in the first place , even the types, and secondly, it is so inhumane. You know what Aria, you are an incredible person. You have endured what most people will never begin to comprehend, including myself. You are an inspiration to me. Aria, I am 54 years old. I never dreamed my body would become dependent on this drug. None of us knew. How could we. I struggle with the windows and the waves, I get impatient with the process and cry and then pray for grace to just keep putting one foot in front of the other. It's amazing how slow the process is and for me as others, I am sure at one time for you too, this is hard. But you do inspire me Aria. You are beautiful!!! I mean this. You have and continue to overcome and you just have all of my respect. How one person, a Dr, 'first do no harm' could do this to another soul is heartbreaking and I cry because of the gravity of the offense to you. I am an RN and I work in cancer care part time. But my eyes have been opened wide to the absolute ignorance of medical professionals and the blatant harm so many cause in the name of technology!!!! But, I believe the years the locusts have eaten, shall be restored onto you as they seem to be even now. My prayer for you and so many of us is that we will yet see the goodness of God in this land, of the living.

 

You know, I am ok with people, but now in WD, I prefer quite abit of alone time also. It is calming for me too. I just need to pull in more right now. But, I am so hoping to return back to myself, who could freely go and interact without all of the neuro angst and fears. From what you and others have said, this all will slowly heal. I am hoping for this 100 percent. Thank you again for sharing. You truly are a strong and beautiful soul Aria.

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Jamie,

 

I have written you a private message.

 

Aria

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I wanted to share a conversation I had with one of the members recently who reached out to me because she's dealing withdrawal.

 

Aria, what would you mean when you say, "you are you, but a different you?" I do understand the second part of that, "because no one could go through this and not be changed by it". What makes the different you? How so?

 

I am so pleased for you that you have all the clarity of your mind back, as well as your passions for life, and yes a beautiful hope for your future!!! When we are in WD, it seems like recovery takes so long. I am longing for the day when I feel "me" back. I know it will be somewhat different than while on the full dose because for me, taking Wellbutrin was like taking speed. Aria, but I remember who I was before the drug.

 

 

My reply:

When I wrote "I'm me but a different me" I meant so much of me (likes, dislikes, activities) is the same but with a different perspective. I learned a lot of things I wish I hadn't dealing with psychiatry, I've become more careful of what I say and I'm not as impulsive. My empathy for others has grown. I'm a senior but sometimes I feel much younger because of the Rip Van Winkle effect of missing many years.

 

 

Aria, can I ask you another question? The neuro emotion of fear and anxiety and sadness, so exaggerated. Was this like the last thing to balance out for you? I know the healing, my own healing has not been linear. I know it is back and forth. The physical symptoms are hard but the emotional are even more difficult. I know this is not the way I was before WD or even before the drug. Is it a true statement that these neuro emotions balance out , maybe lastly? What helped you get through them?? My interest in all the things I used to enjoy, it is just not there yet. I long for it.

 

I like the rip van winkel analogy. For all you have been through, to hear you say this, brings me hope Aria. I do long for my full joy to return. I long to wake up in the morning not dreading another day of WD. Help me have a different outlook if you could advise me. What would you tell me Aria?

 

 

My reply:

I was angry, very angry at what it happened to me and also scared to go to any kind of doctor because of what was in my medical records. So you have anger, fear, despair and I was in a lot of neuropathic pain from an undiagnosed neuromuscular disease. My family didn't know what to make of this because they honestly had no idea the psychiatric drugs had done this to me so when I was telling them what was going on they were at a loss. I need to add that my family lived hundreds of miles from me and I didn't see them that often and even less as the drugs changed me. I might have mentioned my sister is a therapist and when she did realize what happened she was beside herself. Here she was in the field dealing with psychiatrists and her own sister had had this happen to her.

 

In retrospect the more I realized I needed to get past what happened to me has helped. There are times where I'm blown away by what happened because it was so unreal? I really don't know what helped me get through all this? I wasn't too sure who I would be or what I would be drug free? I have been so indoctrinated that I was emotionally damaged- that I was permanently damaged. I don't think any of us will ever fully get over it because of the injustice, the lost years and what I call loss of possibilities.

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Aria - I still get rolling of the eyes when I tell people (complaining of a friend / relative, "she's acting out, she just can't seem to get any better, she's restless and impulsive"):

 

"The psych drugs can do that!"

 

It's almost as if - people accept that the drugs make changes - but cannot accept what those changes are!

 

And they roll their eyes at me:  there she goes again, always crusading, her little "conspiracy theory" stuff....

 

And then I get Madder.

 

You're doing so well!

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Aria - I still get rolling of the eyes when I tell people (complaining of a friend / relative, "she's acting out, she just can't seem to get any better, she's restless and impulsive"):

 

"The psych drugs can do that!"

 

It's almost as if - people accept that the drugs make changes - but cannot accept what those changes are!

 

And they roll their eyes at me:  there she goes again, always crusading, her little "conspiracy theory" stuff....

 

And then I get Madder.

 

You're doing so well!

 

I personally stay away from these kind of people now and will gladly live the rest of my life not entertaining someone's ignorance, to me its like not getting the recognition and validity  of a serious crime ,because its so serious what has happened to us trying to live our lives with such torture ,how dare any one question us is my motto now .

total respect

PB

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How can anyone claim to know another persons reality??? They simply cannot!!!

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How can anyone claim to know another persons reality??? They simply cannot!!!

 

exactly why we are so lucky to have this website ,we don't have to try get people in our lives to believe us or get irritated when you tell a doctor of your agony and he turns around and says, but you look well , as mine did ,the single worst thing to say to someone that wants to live and die  in the same moment .

I totally agree with your indoctrination ,I've always been hanging on a doctors words since I was a sick kid ,so I see now the trap I was always in ,well never again will I listen to them after my life has been ruined by them ,while they hide behind the Hippocratic oat countless people die and suffer because they listen to big pharma and not the person in front of them .

respect to your recovery .

PB    

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Aria, how long did it take for your akathisia to go away? Was it sudden or gradual? I also developed aka whilst on the drug, not in withdrawal. 

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Akathisia wasn't only the internal restlessness. It wouldn't let me sit still, it was feelings of impulsiveness, anger, wanting to harm myself. I described it was like a volcano erupting with nowhere to go plus I had intense feelings of self-harm or doing away with myself. After the neurologist told me I had the worst case of Akathisia he'd seen in this entire medical career I started researching what it was. A few weeks later I had a appointment with my psychiatrist who said "go ahead stop the Seroquel you won't have a problem". I was on so many other psychiatric drugs causing issues that c/t off of Seroquel only made everything worse.

 

I'm trying to remember when the Akathisia started going away. I remember it was spring, I was at a friend's house and I felt more better. This is after months of non-stop withdrawal from the Seroquel plus my attempts at tapering. I had found some soothing CDs to play using a portable CD player with earphones and I would walk through the house and the neighborhood listening to them trying to wade off the restlessness. The excruciatingly painful upper body spasms in my neck, shoulders and hands started to go away. I know you specifically asked about the Akathisia but I was having so many drug-induced toxic effects that they all jumbled into each other.

 

I didn't have these kind of destructive or confused thoughts before I started these drugs and I haven't had them since I became psychiatric drug free. I had no idea what Akathisia was. I never given informed consent (told these drugs could cause unusual feelings and urges).

 

When I was laying in bed this morning it was so peaceful. My first thought was this is so nice when it hadn't been years ago on the psychiatric drugs. I couldn't wake up many days till 4-5 in the afternoon and existed in a hellish drugged world. When I'm rereading this it's almost impossible for me to believe I had existed in this type of situation before?

 

There is light at the end of the tunnel.

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I can understand -- it's hard enough for me to parse out the different manifestations of akathisia (emotional, mental, physical, etc.). I can't imagine having to cope while having other med side effects/withdrawal symptoms!

 

Thanks, Aria, for your words. Holding onto them for hope.

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Today I met over a dozen ladies for lunch and towards the end of the afternoon a few of us adjourned to the porch. One started talking about having major depression and her family doctor would no longer prescribe her Prozac instead referring her to a psychiatrist. She went to the psychiatrist and as you already imagine it was not a fun visit (he wanted to put her on something else at a higher dose). She said she doubted she could get off the Prozac after this many years even at a low dose. Another woman brought up a similar situation and I again decided to out myself as a psychiatric survivor. No I didn't go into detail and by that I did not give them a diagnosis even though it was asked for more than once or the names of drugs I have been on. It was obvious none of these ladies got it and that might be that I didn't go into the nitty-gritty but I didn't feel like sharing that much personal experience. All these ladies were of the very artsy nature (the fine arts; painting, sculpture) and they said that artsy people tends to be diagnosed as being different. Different? I didn't see the diagnosis "marches to the beat of a different drum because she is of an artistic nature" in my psychiatrist records? The lady who kept asking about my diagnosis blurted out "why do they keep keep diagnosing so many people with bipolar" so I knew that's what she been diagnosed with. It was an interesting conversation with what I would call my peers and these women are all intelligent but they couldn't comprehend or get what I was talking about? I wanted these women to understand psychiatric drugs can mimic aspects of mental illness, Prozac is not a simple benign drug and psychiatric diagnoses follow you around so please be careful. These ladies are very fortunate that they have not gone through what I've had to and I hope they never do.

 
Another note is the woman my psychologist sister referred to me to help her taper off a drugs had a run-in with her new primary care doctor. When she went in for an appointment she told the nurse and the physician that she had been working non-stop for several weeks, had tapered off of all her psychiatric drugs for the diagnosis of bipolar, was dealing with psychiatric drug withdrawal and a few other things. Guess what the doctor only heard? Bipolar and non compliant. He proceeded to verbally bash this woman telling her that almost half of all the people who come see him have mental problems. The doctor told her any drug withdrawal off psychiatric drugs never lasted more than two weeks maximum. He told her she was going to have to go to a psychiatrist for several visits to "find the mental illness it might be lurking underneath" that the first visit may not show. After listening to this I said he sounds like a total a****** and why would you return to see someone like this for medical help? I would get my medical records, delete all references to psychiatric diagnosis and psychiatric drugs which you hand carry or mail to your next primary care doctor. If you want to be given credence for having physical issues then please don't tell your new doctor about your psychiatric history.
 
I was fortunate enough some years ago to white out and re-zerox my medical records I took to independent physicians. I wasn't able to delete all references to psychiatry from my records because many of them had gone into the hospital system that owns the majority of physicians in my city. As you all know when a psychiatrist hears or sees any kind of psychiatric terminology it's a knee-jerk reaction to put you in that little box.

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Frightening Aria!!!!  What has our society come to!!!???

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Oh Aria, it's so common!

 

People think I am paranoid, but then - today - I just read of a member who was put on 3 drugs (2 antidepressants and a neuroleptic) for grief, and was left there for 15 years!  

 

I recognize that the stories I see in here are closer to "worst case scenario," but I think it's like Russian Roulette.  It's only a matter of time before they get the bullet.  Or, as I have said previously on site - it's putting your hand in a badger hole.  You might get away with it sometimes, but the more you do it, or the longer you leave your hand it, the more likely you are to have a badger problem!

 

So - I would say that 75-80% of my close friends - who know what I do here - are "medicated"/drugged.  My heart flutters when I think about it.  And it's only a matter of time before one of them ends up diagnosed as "treatment resistant," and it's too easy for that "non-compliant" word to be tossed around.  Here in Australia it only takes one psychiatrist to determine if someone is a candidate for "involuntary."   Doctors are being careful with the benzos - but - more careless with the neuroleptics, which they perceive as "safer" because they are "non-addictive" (read, unpleasant).

 

So - I sometimes wonder if I'm paranoid, but I look around me.  My friends aren't currently having problems with their drugging regimen - yet.  When I go to a theatre event, I look around the room and wonder:  how many on Lyrica?  How many on antidepressants?  How many on "mood stabiliser" anticonvulsant drugs?  Sure enough, when I hear someone who had hip replacement complain of "restless legs," if I inquire, yes, she's been on Lyrica since she came off the opoids after the surgery...

 

And then, when I come and read here, and hear the common enough tale that "I was put on the drug for an emotion and I'm still on it 10 years later..." and the also-common story of, "well, when it quit working, they added...."

 

I know the statistics say that it's 1 in 3 or 1 in 5 on psych drugs.  Maybe I run in "artsy fartsy" circles, but I think it is higher - because people don't think of Lyrica as a psych drug.  They don't think of Chantix as a psych drug.  I could go on and on.

 

I think that your knitting circle's discussion is very enlightening.  What percentage of people in that group, based on your discussion, do you think are exposed to (even if they are off now) psych drugs?  What percentage do you think are currently taking them?  Can you see it in their eyes?  Do you see any subtle signs of akathisia?

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Interesting thoughts JanCarol, I've done the same thing (look around a crowded event )and wondered how many are in the throes of wd but think instead that it's "just them"? So sad. My childrens school has a teacher who has been off on "stress leave". Before and after this leave she was/is a very cold teacher, lashes out on students in emotionally abusive ways, belittles and yells all day. The board can't seem to get her out of the system and thankfully retiring soon. I ran into a fellow mom who said "I don't get it, I had her as a teacher myself back in the day and she was wonderful". All I could think of is, she's medicated and it's doing nothing but harm. Poor woman probably can't even recall who she once was. 

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As the psych drugs went out of my system more and more people were noticing I was different, awake, aware. My best friend's husband looked at me one day saying, "oh my God Aria is well". At that time he didn't understand that the psych drugs had made me so strange in the first place but once he did that was even more of a shock to him in his wife. My best friend didn't like the fact that the drug weight was coming off of me, that I was making friends who were not under the psychiatric umbrella and she got mad at me for changing. This is what happened. The people I knew on psychiatric polypharmacy disappeared from my life for one reason or another (more than a few of them died in their early fifties). I had a fellow psychiatrized friend comment about one woman who died in a nursing home always fighting against her psychiatrists and they had the last laugh drugging her to the point that it killed her. I never expected this person to say something so profound but even she knew it. I have met people who have been way way worse than me in the beginning and they only ended up on an antidepressant so how in the hell did I end up on all the crap I was on? None of this seems to follow any kind of rules? Why one doctor give somebody an antidepressant and then another doctor throws the whole medicine cabinet at them.

 

Maybe the next time I'm in a group of women I'll ask how many are on an antidepressant, sleeping pill or benzo or all three? I felt somewhat uncomfortable when I was at the luncheon discussing what I've been through but I felt I had to say something. I was sitting by a friend I've known for decades who knows all about my psych mis-adventure but she was very quiet when I was talking about it because she knew it was very personal for me. She has learned from me about psychiatric drugs and I've heard her on the phone before cautioning someone who is going to a psychiatrist. She has said "you have to be very careful on any kind of drugs he gives you because I have a friend who was misdiagnosed and drugged wrongly for years".

 

I need to add that the woman at the luncheon who said she was severely depressed and on Prozac hasn't felt any better on this drug for years? She's always been able to work and told me in detail what caused her to be depressed so it wasn't like it came out of the blue when she was having a happy life? She was having a severe situational experience that would make anybody feel bad, unhappy, depressed. At the lunch she had said famous artists like Michelangelo, Shakespeare, Picasso had some sort of emotional difference but it was part of their artistic ability. They were very lucky they went born today because their artistic ability would be drugged out of them. When I was on psychiatric drugs any kind of so-called artistic ability I had ceased. I couldn't do anything I used to enjoy (crafts, reading, drawing, gardening) but psych drug free I can again.

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I agree, Aria, that the geniuses of our proud past would be drugged.

 

I know it sounds paranoid (there's that word again) but I truly think that the "powers that be" don't want us to be creative.  They want us to be cookie-cutter workers.  We are not people to them, we are "labor."  It is a resource to be used up, not a career or vocation anymore.  

 

The people who don't fit the cookie cutter - the ones who are just a little more creative - end up at the docs because they can't cope with the stresses that are placed on us in this crazy society.  We no longer have the support of extended family, our employers no longer take care of us like they used to - and it is harder and harder to build community in this device world.

 

Additionally - if anyone takes in 15 minutes of media per day, they get the mainstream messages wired directly through the eyes and ears to the brain.  "Not happy?  See your Doctor, this pill can help."  It becomes normal to take something for the natural inability to adapt to the craziness.  It's very 1984 and Brave New World.  It's believed to be "normal" to go to a doctor to get a pill to make it so that you can cope with a long hours thankless job, a bullying boss, a backstabbing coworker, a 2 hour commute through traffic, and come home and be normal to your family!  

 

The hard part is - how to break free and stay free - and yet still be able to buy and sell, eat and work.  Even harder if you are trying to raise a family.  I like the way Viggo Mortensen did it in "Captain Fantastic."  That would be my ideal (but I'm now not well enough to live that rough!).

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Posted (edited)

Jan Carol,

I have met people who had so many problems it was oozing out of them and they have never gone to a psychiatrist or therapy. I find the ones who are particularly aggressive and mean who need some kind of intervention whether it's an intensive therapy continue on being this way. I do think the people who are affected more by situations may seek out a psychiatrist but don't realize on many levels what that will do to them (diagnosis and the drugs). I was on two kind of statins at the same time (high levels from pancreatitis) but after reading about the effects of statins I discontinued both. My cholesterol and triglyceride levels continue to be good after stopping them. When I to go see a doctor they are astounded how little medications I am on (only on meds for the neuromuscular disease I have).

 

I enjoyed "Captain Fantastic". I used to know a few people who lived this way.

Edited by JanCarol
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Thinking more about your question, "Why me?"

 

Alto talks about "fast metabolizers."  These are people that they just pour on the drugs because they don't have the "desired effect."  My sis is one of these, she's on 5 psych drugs (and this is her lightest cocktail ever!).  

 

The other possibility is that as you started having toxic reactions, they got diagnosed (diagnonsense as NZ11 says) as psych conditions.

 

Or a combination of both.

 

I agree that aggressive, alcoholic people are still running around loose, and it seems to be the gentle people that get drugged.  What's up with that?

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