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I was going to post a success story on an anti-depressant withdrawal forum

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Dorado, Jan 16, 2019.

  1. music321

    music321 Peer Supporter

    Hi, Chache55.
    If you go to the main page, there are links that describe TMS (tension myositis syndrome). The founder of TMS related studies is considered to be John Sarno, MD. If you search these terms on a search engine or on youtube, there are many great resources.

    Anxiety is our brain's way of letting us know that there are perceived threats that must be dealt with. Once we grow as people to the point that we can manage the threats of the past, our anxiety should go away. I'm not a psychologist, so don't think that I'm offering "official" advice. Best of luck to you, and welcome to the forum.
    Chache55 likes this.
  2. mbsgal85

    mbsgal85 New Member

    I have followed your story. I believe my foot twitching/Painful Legs Moving Toes is functional neurological disorder.

    Would anyone address this idea of “stress?” I have to work, but it can be stressful. We cannot rid ourselves of all stressors. Sometimes, I see people abandon their jobs to heal, but we are regular people for the most part, looking to heal in the midst of our lives.
  3. Lis07

    Lis07 New Member

    Thank you for this thread! :D I have known I have TMS for about 7-8 months now, and I'm finally going off my last medication, a low dose of the tricyclic antidepressant, Amitriptyline, 10 mg, that was prescribed to me last August for pain and inner shaking/a hightened fight-flight response. It felt like I was ready because finally my nervous system response is way down after doing lots of TMS work like journalling, seeing a Somatic Experiencing psychologist and a body therapist/Rosen Method practitioner for developmental trauma. I have tried tapering off of Venlafaxine/Effexor before, after being on it for 7-8 years and I had to go slow. This very low dose shouldn't be an issue, though - for depression you take 100-300 mg and I'm only on 10! After researching what method you can use to get the least side effects last night, I ended up on one of these antidepressant withdrawal forums, and they recommend to reduce by 10 % every month and then 10 % of the new dose. I spend hours doing calculations and a chart and by using that method I have 43(!) months to go before I'm off it! 3 years and 7 months! I thought everything made a ton of sense, and when I took my reduced dose yesterday, I already had side effects, slept poorly and woke up sweating all the time, feeling dizzy and having brain fog. I have now spend 6 hours reading stuff on that forum on how to taper off safely, and I felt myself tense up more and more. It wasn't until I asked in one of the TMS groups on Facebook that someone said it was TMS talking. And I thought no, not this time, this is totally different. But I did notice the exact same panic that I used to have when I was tapering off of antidepressants and having symptoms before. The feeling that I'm not in control of my body and I don't know what's going on. I then came across this thread and it's GOLD! Dorado, you have a rare gift for reassuring people. I even stopped myself writing you about the EDS - I'm generalized hypermobile myself, but I very rarely dislocate joints - but I felt a need to write you so you could tell me I would still be able to move my body and that the hypersensitive nervous system wouldn't be a problem xD I mean, being in this panicky state, just reading the words "Ehlers-Danlos" and the sensitive sympathetic nervous system made me think that I should probably just stay on the Amitriptyline! xD Omg, the struggle is real!

    Well, I have the urge to just try to stop all at once. It's such a low dose that you can hardly divide the tiny pill if you don't dissolve it, and the symptoms will be over in 2-3 weeks, the rest I can treat as TMS. Thank you all again! :D
    cathcnz and JanAtheCPA like this.
  4. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    My people, my beautiful people,

    What the fecking hell are you doing to yourselves?
    (This is actually a rhetorical question. What have I been doing to myself?)

    Being. Too. Fecking. Serious.

    TMS happens when we forget life is an exquisite gift and we start to fret, control, micro-manage, stress out, whatever your gig is.

    It goes away when we relax, have fun, chill out, let our hair down.

    I’ve been through one of the top 5 most stressful periods of my life and today I vow to myself and everyone here that I am giving up being worried/anxious/angry/sad about bullshit I can not control and don’t care about anyway.

    Who’s with me?
    JanAtheCPA, Dorado, BinLA and 2 others like this.
  5. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    I couldn't agree more! I'm a fan :joyful:
    Lis07 likes this.
  6. Rosebud

    Rosebud Peer Supporter

    I'm with you! Somewhat belatedly!
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  7. kelliwheatz

    kelliwheatz Newcomer

    Dorado - first of all, you’re my hero. I have EDS and your posts talking about how EDS and mindbody pain intersect have helped me more than you will EVER know.

    Second, I am literally going into my doctor today to ask about tapering off my anti-depressant. This was amazing to read. Thank you
    Lis07 and JanAtheCPA like this.
  8. cathcnz

    cathcnz Newcomer

    @Dorado I'm someone from one of those forums and I can't tell you how relieved I am to read your post. It gives me hope. And hope is far more healing than fear. Thank you.
    Lis07 and JanAtheCPA like this.
  9. cathcnz

    cathcnz Newcomer

    Question for @Dorado and the rest of you on this thread, but before I do that I'll give you a brief summary (well kind of brief haha) .
    17 years ago I had my first episode of anxiety, panic attacks, and depression, bought on by having anxiety over the migraines I was experiencing at the time (I refused to believe they were stress and was convinced I had a brain tumor... turned out no brain tumour lol). IF ONLY I had found this site back then I can't help but think things may not have spiralled so badly. But hindsight is a great thing isn't it. Anyway, I was put on an antidepressant (paroxetine) which I stayed on for about 2 years (then tapered off). 6 months later my GAD resurfaced (perfectionism was running rampant combined with a fear of developing post natal depression... my husband and I were having a baby) , I crashed, and was put back on an antidepressant (Lexapro this time). Over the next 15 years had 2 changes after medication 'poop' outs. Fearing change and not handling stress well always my trigger (then panic attacks kick in).
    My last switch was 3 months ago, which lead me to this site. The change over went terribly to say the least (dose too high and developed akathisia, so quick drop down). My nervous system has gone haywire and has thrown up all sorts of physical symptoms!! After visiting the antidepressant withdrawl sites I became convinced my symptoms were due to the manner I was switched (no taper after being on that particular med for 7 years). And yes, I began living in extreme fear that I was permanently damaged. Then when I began getting PGAD symptoms (not having a clue such thing existed at that time), I googled to try and find out if anyone else has ever experienced these sensations (I thought I was a freak), and then I freaked out even more to see it was something others had experienced!! My anxiety went through the roof ! In my mind , that was concrete evidence that it was due to the medication (because I was experiencing these PGAD symptoms before I even read what they were). I kept reading how PGAD led people to suicide and began catastrophising that this would become me.
    But somehow I found this site. Thankfully. It is far far less scary. And although anxiety robs me of rational thought, I can see rationale posted many times over on here.
    So this leads me back to my question (I'm getting to it... slowly lol). When all these symptoms began after my medication switch I decided it was either due to withdrawl of my old med, or side effects from the new med not agreeing with me. I did have anxiety before the switch (hence having to make the switch in the first place) but nothing like now. My nervous system is currently in tatters. If to heal, my nervous system needs less stress, this is gonna be tough (it's pretty tricky to stress less when you're highly anxious lol). In the past my antidepressant has "taken the steering wheel off me" and calmed me enough to 'just get on and stop obsessing'. This time, 3 months in, that hasn't happened. I'm still obsessing about my symptoms. So clearly this time around the med isn't doing quite the job others have (or perhaps it's even hindering the process of it's not agreeing with me). I'm so gun shy of change since my last switch when things went awry that I don't want to come off it, but I'm stuck in no man's land feeling not great and struggling to relax enough to let my body heal unobstructed by my thoughts. In finding this site, I'm determined to try and heal myself this time around because my physical symptoms all make so much sense based on the mind body connection. My question... do you think it's possible to heal even if I'm still on a medication that is less than perfect for me (I am however eating and sleeping so I'll take that as a win). I'm just still ruminating ALOT. Distraction sometimes helps but I feel like I need to get better at it (my mind still manages to tick along in the background). Or do I need to address my med in order to get benefit from the site (in order to calm my nervous system down)?
    Sorry for rambling, I'm having a hard time articulating myself!
    I know everything I've read from @Dorado is correct (when my brain is well my logic is the same), but right now my silly brain keeps jumping to worst case scenario. Can I train it out of there or do I need to rely on meds to do it (as my physchiatrist has me believe)?

    So in short, if all my physical symptoms are due to stress and anxiety (which of I'm honest , I believe they are), that makes me a bit panicky in itself. Because that means my anxiety is not controlled even though I'm being treated for it. Which means I may have to change meds which terrifies me more than anything else.
    I probably have bigger health anxiety over my mental health if that makes sense? Can I heal?????
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2019
  10. winterprev

    winterprev New Member

    Hi there and welcome! I dont visit on here really anymore but I got a email since I have posted in this thread and felt the need to reach out.

    First of all this is a crazy journey of life. Your are on a journey and it appears its time for your to start really changing. It can be scary, but that is part of the problem. Being scared is Fear. We need to conquer this.

    I just stopped my Lexapro about 3 months ago and did a long taper. Took me about a year and a half to come off. I followed the recommendation of https://www.survivingantidepressants.org/ (Surviving Antidepressants) website which was great. Took it slow and of course you have withdrawals, but I was able to manage them which is key. They are a big help over there.

    I started the AD because of health anxiety that It got from health symptoms (stress) because of my personality. Like perfectionism, people pleaser, etc. etc.
    I have had some dark times. I found TMS because of pain I was having and this opened me up to the Mind/body/spirit. Our minds and body are so connected its crazy. So much more then we think!

    After I stopped the AD I started doing a few online programs called the https://www.guptaprogram.com/ (The Gupta Program) and https://retrainingthebrain.com/ (Dynamic Neural Retraining System™)

    I started to realize that we have this worry/fear/perfectionist pathways that have been hardwired into our brain. You can't just flip a switch and its gone. You have to rewire our brains. That is the work you have to do. You have to be aware of your thoughts. Redirect them to a positive thought. Sounds easy but it takes time. That is the key to get rid of the symptom imperative to me as well as anxiety/depression etc. etc. Is rewiring your brain to stop your thoughts and change them until you completely change your personality. Also, you need to make sure if you get feelings you dont repress them. You feel them and let them pass. Your body is energy (research Dr Joe Dispenza). Once you discover we are all energy, everything starts to make sense. We all look at ourselves thinking we are this Matter but were not. We are energy. Emotions are energy in motion and it needs to pass through us and out like a electrical wire.

    So to make a long story short, TMS turned my whole world upside down when I realized my thoughts are WAY more powerful then we think. Once you 100% believe that (takes time) you can start rewiring those parts of your brain while calming your nervous system down.

    You will heal. You posting this today and learning about this is already the start. Its not a overnight process. It will take a lot of time and there will be a lot of ups and downs. But we can all heal. Our bodies are designed to heal and go back into homeostasis. I have come a long way and you can too. PM if you want to chat through Skype or need a phone call or anything. I am here for your. Much love.
    JanAtheCPA and cathcnz like this.
  11. cathcnz

    cathcnz Newcomer

    Thank you @winterprev. Those sure are positive words to read . Having been on antidepressants for so long (and one 6 month unsuccessful attempt off them), I had honestly come to believe that I NEED to be on them to be well and that I can't function off them (and this is reinforced by my physchiatrist). And although they've carried me through the last 17 years, I've always had such a loathing of needing to be on them and a fear of them. The thought of being well enough to fathom coming off them is so foreign to me right now (my mind is so scattered on them, I fear what I will be like off them). I have done CBT in the past, and some ACT, but nothing ever sticks. To be fair, I am probably not consistent enough. I always just let the medication do the hard work, because deep down I feel like my mind isn't strong enough and it needs the meds. I feel like the people that can 'think their way out of it' don't have anxiety or depression as badly as me (a perfect example of my negative thinking right there... I've become a pro at it lol).
    But reading your post that you came through when you applied the hard work give me so much hope . I know I need to apply the hard work. But that also scares me. I am so afraid of feeling big emotions, because those big emotions have always lead to a huge emotional crash and depressive episode for me (grieving a miscarriage, grieving my dog dying, grieving my mother's onset of dementia). When those emotions come up I always seem to hit rock bottom afterwards (and get 'picked back up again' by the meds).
    But I do truly do believe in neuroplasticity. And need to believe that I too, can rewire. And the more people I see that have rewired, the more I believe I can too. Do I believe I've got what it takes... I'm not sure yet . Some days I do, some days far from it (like today when my negative thinking is all consuming). But I can't give up on a better life, and this is no way to live. And given I'm now even more scared of meds, I NEED to dig deep to get well. I need to change. Do you think even a very broken brain which LOVES to worry and turn everything to a negative can change?
    I know this is irrelevant to my situation, but may I ask how long you were on medication and if you had the same instilled fear that you 'needed it'?
    It's stories like yours that make me more determined than ever to stick with this. I am unaware of any TMS practioners here in Hamilton, NZ, so will be relying on this site. Do you think that alone will be enough ?
    And yes, you hit the nail on the head, I too am an utter people pleaser and a perfectionist. I am also highly sensitive.
    I am currently completely stuck in a loop of fear (my symptoms/is the med causing the symptoms/is withdrawl causing the symptoms/if its anxiety causing symptoms then my med isn't working /if the med isn't working then my stress levels will be higher /if my stress levels are higher then my symptoms will be worse /if my symptoms will be worse then how will I stop being anxious???)... see where I'm going with this... my brain just won't stop ruminating, it loves to blimin solve problems... it can't just be chill!!!! How do you chill an over active brain so that you can let nervous system healing happen? I need to get off the hamster wheel of fear!!

    Thanks @winterprev your post was very timely.
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2019
  12. winterprev

    winterprev New Member

    Okay.. so... Where do I start.

    First of all, there is nothing wrong with you. I am built the same way as you 100%.

    So I don’t want to give medical advice, but I find my physchiatrist to be a load of shit. Mine said I needed to be on psych meds my whole life because that is all they know. They know how to give medicine because that is what they taught. I deep down don’t believe this. Our brains have been just wired to believe this.

    So what happens with the brain is that we have this loop. How do we break the loop is to rewire the brain. Our brain is consistently trying to protect us. For instance, “we better put that helmet on our kids head so they don’t hurt themselves” or “we better brush our teeth so we don’t get cavities”. That’s our brains job to protect us (its more specifically certain parts of the brain) and it has been that way for years. If we see a lion behind a bush one time and almost kills us, our subconscious writes a program inside our brains that whenever we get near that bush its starts to go into fight or flight. Same thing with what you are going through. Your withdrawal is trauma. Trauma is that lion in the bush. So now your brain is frantically trying to protect you because its doing exactly what it does best. Sends stress hormones in your body that take away your congnitive thinking, makes your mind race because its trying to find a solution, creates symptoms because a bunch of your process’s like rest and digest have been turned off so you not digesting you food well. Those things its trying to protect you from just cause more problems and the loop goes around and around. Its okay. Its how we were built.

    You have a overprotective brain that is in a loop. Ever person on this website probably has some form of it. How do you change this. To convince you brain that you are safe. You see… what wires together fires together. So if you associate fear (emotion) with medicine changes (thought) it creates a neural pathway. So whenever those two things fire together you are going to have symptoms. The key is to have the thought, and replace the emotion with something positive like holding your baby for the first time, or your dog that comes up to you everyday and is excited to see you. Now you are replacing the thought with a new elevated emotion that rewires your brain.

    You can do it. TONs of people are doing it. And you can do it while your on your medicine. Although the medicine completely removes the worry/anxiety.. its only repressing it. Its not curing you. But If you get these tools 100% down and you have grown as a human and believe we are all energy with souls (like really believe, one of the biggest things with this work is changing your beliefs) you wont be overly sensitive. If that person cuts you off the road you can look at them and realize that they are just a product of there environment. They had experiences in there life or because of their childhood that created that personality. Once you start to realize this you don’t react and become over sensitive and get angry or sad. You look at life different. You realize that you are more powerful then you think. Those old limited beliefs that you think you are this way or that way start to dissipate and you start living from joy and happiness. But its a growing thing. You dont change it overnight its a lifelong process of learning and growing and its way worth it.

    I HIGHLY recommend you sign up for the gupta programme and watch the first 3 series it gives you. Cost nothing at all. It will squash alot of your fears quickly. It did for me. PM if you want to chat through skype or something. I wont always be on here.
  13. cathcnz

    cathcnz Newcomer

    @Lis07 I could completely relate to your post! So did you end up jumping off the Amitriptyline?

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