Ah, withdrawals. We meet again.

RussellSue

Not Active
I developed a nontoxic goiter a while back, presumably caused by Lithium since thyroid issues don't run in my family but you can't just tell a doc that you don't need a mood stabilizer you have been on for six years, I guess. I never had a bipolar. I had PTSD-related depression that had been hard to treat.

I just lowered my Lithium Carbonate dose from 450 to 300 mg a few days ago. I had myself convinced that I would not even notice. LIES!!!

My original dose was 1050 mg but that was a few months ago. I got shipwrecked on my way to 0 mg at 450 probably in May because I couldn't get lower dose pills from my doctor. That was quite the challenge.

Withdrawals are hard. I feel like shit.

On the upside, it's only 150 mg and 0 mg after this.

Anyone got any fun withdrawal stories?

I deliberately intimidated a man in the grocery store yesterday after his reckless cart driving made me jump out of my skin. Not my best moment but I was headed that direction with or without medication issues.
 
Yes, had withdrawal effects from meds. They're none the better for being legal imo.
Can you use a pill cutter?

I had to reduce so gently that using a pill cutter was a gift. It meant I wasn't returning to the pharmacy for lower dose meds and could easily and accurately reduce the dosage, under medical supervision, myself.

Is the jumping out of you skin part of the withdrawal or was it the getting a bit too angry moment?
 

RussellSue

Not Active
Is the jumping out of you skin part of the withdrawal or was it the getting a bit too angry moment?

It seems like every time I cut back on the Lithium I spend like 2 weeks being jumpy and my emotional regulation is shit. Normally, I think I would have been annoyed by this man's obvious attempt at being pushy and the fact that he startled me but I would not normally make an effort to aggressively let him know about my aggravation.

I'm not sure if I can use a pill cutter with the Lithium as the 300 mg pills are extended release. I don't really know how that works. The 150 mg pills are capsules, so that's a no go for the pill cutter.

It really is crazy how difficult getting off of legal medications can be. And oddly enough, I think I have had a worse time with Lithium than I did with benzos. Some of what I've read says Lithium doesn't even have a real withdrawal syndrome. It does in this body.

Thanks for your input. I am just hanging at 300 mg for a while - not ready to take another dip into the wild world of withdrawals.
 

Friday

Moderator
Anyone got any fun withdrawal stories?
I have a running joke/not joke about preferring to be a werewolf? (Seriously, anyone’s got the whole instant-heal thing in pocket? Give a girl a shout.)

But I always sorta hope the muscles ripping from bones thing might be that werewolf thing kicking in at long last ;) Just get through this hurtin’ puppy phase & all’s golden. ;)

I figure being hypermobile & prone to breaking & ripping shit... you might know what I mean.
 

RussellSue

Not Active
But I always sorta hope the muscles ripping from bones thing might be that werewolf thing kicking in at long last ;)

Hahaha! I will definitely keep that in mind when I taper down again. I have been having that sensation! It never occurred to me - but now it will ?

Thanks! I might just throw my weight around a little more next time.
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
Lol
I developed a nontoxic goiter a while back, presumably caused by Lithium since thyroid issues don't run in my family but you can't just tell a doc that you don't need a mood stabilizer you have been on for six years, I guess. I never had a bipolar. I had PTSD-related depression that had been hard to treat.

I just lowered my Lithium Carbonate dose from 450 to 300 mg a few days ago. I had myself convinced that I would not even notice. LIES!!!

My original dose was 1050 mg but that was a few months ago. I got shipwrecked on my way to 0 mg at 450 probably in May because I couldn't get lower dose pills from my doctor. That was quite the challenge.

Withdrawals are hard. I feel like shit.

On the upside, it's only 150 mg and 0 mg after this.

Anyone got any fun withdrawal stories?

I deliberately intimidated a man in the grocery store yesterday after his reckless cart driving made me jump out of my skin. Not my best moment but I was headed that direction with or without medication issue
Lol regarding the incident in the grocery store. Sometimes laughter (or acting out) really is the best medicine.

Withdrawal can be hell! Ever tried to come off benzos? If you want some horror stories, head over to bezo buddies dot com. We're talking months to YEARS of the most debilitating withdrawals you've ever heard of.

I'm 5 months into a low dose benzo taper and I'm brought to my knees. I've only got shards of a pill a day to go and I just can't make the last reductions. I would not believe it if I weren't experiencing it myself.

I read the stories at benzo buddies. But it's an entirely different thing to experience it yourself. Mind warping. Existence warping. Ugh!

I wish you the best in the remainder of your Lithium withdrawal.
Woodsy
 

RussellSue

Not Active
Withdrawal can be hell! Ever tried to come off benzos?
You know what is weird? I have come off of benzos and it wasn't as hard as the Lithium has been, overall. I can't remember if it was clonazepam or lorazepam, now, but I took one of those for about 4 years, every day. It seems like it was twice or three times a day that I took it and tapering down was hard. It was really hard to get off of those pills but it was quick. I remember suffering through one horrid Thanksgiving (my first Thanksgiving with my new in-laws, no less) but that's basically the only memory I have of withdrawal symptoms affecting my life.

I just started tapering down the Lithium again last week. I am on the 150 mg pills and I think after this holiday I might get ballsy enough to do that last step down to 0 but this has been a long freaking hall with the Lithium and hard, hard, hard every step-down with anxiety, insomnia, piss-poor moods, trouble regulating anger, and more. All-in-all, I would say getting off the Lithium has been at least twice the pain in the ass that the benzos were. I was on the Lithium 2-3 years longer and was on a pretty low dose of benzos -- so maybe that's why?? I don't know but I have definitely found it interesting that I have read that Lithium isn't addictive and doesn't come with a withdrawal syndrome. I have also read that it does but it's been a heck of a lot harder than I expected.

I'm 5 months into a low dose benzo taper and I'm brought to my knees. I've only got shards of a pill a day to go and I just can't make the last reductions. I would not believe it if I weren't experiencing it myself.
But you are still managing to get out and socialize? That's great. People are the last thing I want to see when I am detoxing.

I am sorry you are having such a hard time with it, though. That stinks. I hope it starts getting better soon. I have heard that it can be nightmarish coming off of benzos but got lucky, I guess.

My most acute withdrawals are done for this round but I will probably be back at it next week for my last stand -- oh thank God. I'd prefer to be done with it before I find a job or even have another interview. I can't imagine looking like a real winner while having withdrawal symptoms during my first weeks of work or during an interview. Having it done with would lower the stress of worrying about it, too.

I hope you are drinking a lot of water. I say that because I am bad at it, myself, but know it helps.
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
@RussellSue, you were indeed lucky with Benzos! Maybe now you are paying for it with Lithium?!? What ever the case, I'm sorry you are having such a tough run with Lithium. Withdrawal sucks!

I'm glad you can look forward to work. That's a positive. I hope your last stretch of dose reduction goes well and your final recovery is quick and lasting.

I do get out to socialize as it were. I mostly just have "hello how are you?" conversations. Those just about wreck me! It saddens me that I am currently incapable of meaningful relationship due to my PTSD. I often wonder if I will ever be able to work or have a meaningful relationship again.

One day at a time. That's all I can do right now.

I hope you have as good a day as possible with not too many withdrawal symptoms.

Woodsy
 

RussellSue

Not Active
I often wonder if I will ever be able to work or have a meaningful relationship again.
I think you will and I think you are probably giving yourself less credit than you deserve in this regard. It's not entirely uncommon for people to come in here and participate a tenth as much as you have just to end having some major blow-up with someone (I may or may not have been one of these people - I honestly cannot remember 😆 ). I haven't been stalking you around the site or anything but I think you are probably coping better than that.

I have had to be very strategic about work and have yet to find employment that is really appropriate given my education and whatnot after finishing a graduate program about 3 years ago. It's been a real struggle. I was working as an online auction lister for the Goodwill last year but was a covid layoff. I was still on the recall list in July when my husband and I went on a relocation spree, moving 3 times between then and now. We are finally settled for the time being in a tiny town where he found a teaching job. We opted to buy a park model RV and live in it with the reality that we don't know how long it will take me to find work given the pandemic and my limitations. I'm looking but there are a whole lot of jobs that I am technically qualified for that I pass over because I know that my anxiety would be an issue.

I still have a lot of hope, however, because I have been able to develop a lot of skills that I can use in a work setting without making myself crazy and since I figure I am a lifer where work limitations are concerned, this feels really crucial. When I was first given a diagnosis, I really didn't know how to do anything but things that caused me more problems, mentally and physically but I keep taking classes, all the time, and I feel like it sure as hell better pay off, someday. 😂

One day at a time. That's all I can do right now.
There's nothing wrong with that. And that's all we really can do.

When I first started trying to recover, it felt like I was doomed to a life of nothing but emotional breakdowns, blow-ups, and failed relationships. I can say with a high level of confidence that I have a wonderful marriage largely due to the fact that I invested time and effort into my recovery which meant I could communicate what was happening with me even if that thing was that his feet could not touch mine in the bed because I was afraid I might kick the crap out of him in the night. And, while limited, I have been employable for some time now. I absolutely suck at grocery shopping but that's part of my one day at a time, too.

I hope you have as good a day as possible with not too many withdrawal symptoms.

Thanks, you too!
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
I think you will and I think you are probably giving yourself less credit than you deserve in this regard. It's not entirely uncommon for people to come in here and participate a tenth as much as you have just to end having some major blow-up with someone (I may or may not have been one of these people - I honestly cannot remember 😆 ). I haven't been stalking you around the site or anything but I think you are probably coping better than that.

I have had to be very strategic about work and have yet to find employment that is really appropriate given my education and whatnot after finishing a graduate program about 3 years ago. It's been a real struggle. I was working as an online auction lister for the Goodwill last year but was a covid layoff. I was still on the recall list in July when my husband and I went on a relocation spree, moving 3 times between then and now. We are finally settled for the time being in a tiny town where he found a teaching job. We opted to buy a park model RV and live in it with the reality that we don't know how long it will take me to find work given the pandemic and my limitations. I'm looking but there are a whole lot of jobs that I am technically qualified for that I pass over because I know that my anxiety would be an issue.

I still have a lot of hope, however, because I have been able to develop a lot of skills that I can use in a work setting without making myself crazy and since I figure I am a lifer where work limitations are concerned, this feels really crucial. When I was first given a diagnosis, I really didn't know how to do anything but things that caused me more problems, mentally and physically but I keep taking classes, all the time, and I feel like it sure as hell better pay off, someday. 😂


There's nothing wrong with that. And that's all we really can do.

When I first started trying to recover, it felt like I was doomed to a life of nothing but emotional breakdowns, blow-ups, and failed relationships. I can say with a high level of confidence that I have a wonderful marriage largely due to the fact that I invested time and effort into my recovery which meant I could communicate what was happening with me even if that thing was that his feet could not touch mine in the bed because I was afraid I might kick the crap out of him in the night. And, while limited, I have been employable for some time now. I absolutely suck at grocery shopping but that's part of my one day at a time, too.



Thanks, you too!
@RussellSue, thank you for your encouraging words. I always benefit from hearing of people such as yourself who are making progress toward ends they never thought possible. Since this morning, my mood and thoughts have changed drastically. I've gone from feeling utterly dark and hopeless to feeling almost "pre-trauma normal." This in and of itself is hopeful and frustrating at the same time. Hopeful because I haven't felt like this in years and it's indicative of being able to feel like this more and more. Frustrating because feeling like this gives hope that is only ripped away at the next bout of debilitating trauma symptoms. What a roller coaster!

I like this: "When I first started trying to recover, it felt like I was doomed to a life of nothing but emotional breakdowns, blow-ups, and failed relationships." That's me! Hearing of your success is very encouraging.

While I may not be giving myself enough credit, it's all I can give myself at the current juncture in time. Hopefully, a month from now I will be giving myself more credit. For the time being, I'm trying to be 100% honest with myself, as this was not an option in my years of abuse. In that environment I had to "fake it til I make it" kinda thing. I couldn't be sad, mad, depressed, hopeless, etc. I had to always be positive, positive, positive. Felt great at the time, but it was not real. So the crash was inevitable. Now I'm allowing myself to be despondent when I am and owning it.

It so helpful to be able to come to this and other forums and talk with folks like you who have been through something similar. To just be real. It seems like the more I talk about things honestly, the more I begin to get tired of talking about it. When that happens, then my symptoms seem to improve. It's almost like I've got all this toxic crap stored up in me and benefit by simply airing it out over and over again until it loses it's impact. I think the term for it is desensitization. Talking about it over and over again takes away it's power over me.

Thank you for being a listening ear and giving compassionate, hopeful feedback. I appreciate you.

Oh, I don't feel like you are stalking me at all. LOL.

I am off to the local mall to do a walk n talk. I will walk at least two miles and force myself to talk with at least a few folks. By talking with folks, even in shallow conversations, I am overcoming my fear of socialization (social anxiety disorder). I'm even enjoying it occasionally. And I am desensitizing myself to the symptoms which socialization brings on me. I'm training my psyche to realize most people are not threats. What a ride!

I hope you have as good a day as possible!
Woodsy
 

RussellSue

Not Active
I think the term for it is desensitization.
Yes, that is the term and it is very helpful for me, too. Even me talking about my sister stuff in here recently has an element of that because when I discuss things here, it kind of preps my brain for what is to come with her and helps me process what has already happened. Since we went through a lot of trauma together, we trigger one another and so having people who get the issues around to talk to before I react to my trauma directly with her has also been a big help.

Thank you for being a listening ear and giving compassionate, hopeful feedback. I appreciate you.
Thank you. ☺️ That is so nice to hear.

I am off to the local mall to do a walk n talk. I will walk at least two miles and force myself to talk with at least a few folks. By talking with folks, even in shallow conversations, I am overcoming my fear of socialization (social anxiety disorder). I'm even enjoying it occasionally. And I am desensitizing myself to the symptoms which socialization brings on me. I'm training my psyche to realize most people are not threats. What a ride!

I hope it went well.

We're going to look for some hiking today in accordance with my physical therapist's suggestion. Hubby is home for the week for the holiday break, so I'm hoping I can get him sucked into regular exercise, too. It's good for everyone.
 
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