Anxiety

My decision to go off anti-depressants

I’ve talked about my anxiety and depression here before because I think it’s important to let others know they’re not alone. I’ve struggled with anxiety my whole life but until about 7 years ago, I didn’t have a diagnosis.

Up until then…

I thought I was just paranoid.

I accepted the fact I was a hypochondriac.

It was manageable and only affected my day-to-day activities from time to time.

But 7 years ago, it became unbearable. And around the same time, depression started to kick in as well.

People hear you’re depressed and they think that means sad. And yes, that’s part of it. But there’s so much more.

You don’t feel happy at all, when you know damn well you have every reason to be.

You lose interest in things you used to love doing.

You’d rather be alone.

You’re exhausted and completely unmotivated.

Everything in your body hurts.

You just don’t feel like yourself.

Now of course these “symptoms” are different for everyone. But these were the types of things I was feeling and I decided to go talk to someone about it and see if I could work it out that way.

It was nice to get things off my chest. It felt good to have someone listen to me who understood what I was dealing with. But it wasn’t enough. So I asked if medicine were an option.

She said it was and if I felt like therapy wasn’t helping, I could try going on medicine.

So I did. And I was on medicine until I got pregnant when it was unsafe for baby. I also couldn’t take it while nursing, so there were times when I wasn’t on it and things were fine. Totally manageable.

But a year or so ago, I noticed it wasn’t doing it’s job anymore. I started feeling really anxious and sad again. And then I had my first panic attack and it scared the shit out of me. So I saw my doctor and they added another pill to my cocktail. And things were okay for a while and then boom, not working again. And I felt really hazy and like I was watching my own life happen from someone else’s body and I hated it. So I made the decision to go off both meds and just give my body a fresh start.

I tried to wean by myself the first time and failed miserably. I was having mad withdrawal symptoms and I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. So I started taking one of the meds again and scheduled an appointment with my doctor. I told her I wanted to get off the other one and she asked me why. I explained that I wanted to try some more natural approaches and just wanted everything out of my body. She said it probably wasn’t a good idea but it’s my body and that’s what I wanted to do.

So I weaned off the meds again and withdrawal was minimal. But here I am, a month and a half off medicine and I feel super anxious and depressed. I’ve got a lot going on so I know that doesn’t help the situation. But I’ve been researching and looking up every way possible to deal with this naturally.

I’ve been taking St. John’s Wort and Saffron.

I’ve been drinking Chamomile tea at night.

I’ve been using my Essential Oils daily.

I’ve been trying Alpha Stim.

I plan to start exercising again once we move home and things get a little more normal again.

I haven’t found a therapist I like yet but that’s something I want to look into too.

And while I’m hopeful all of these things will make a difference, I’m not opposed to going back on medicine if I need to. My doctor has always left the decision up to me but has said that sometimes, some people just need to be on medicine. And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.

It’s all a work in progress right now. And I share this because I want you to know YOU ARE NOT ALONE. And if you’ve been through this, I want to hear your experience. I’m here for you… even if it’s just through email and social media, friends. I get it… and I’m here for you. XOXO.

You can read more about my journey with anxiety in the posts below:

The truth about anti-depressants 

Honest moment because I’m human too

Update: Living with anxiety and panic disorder

How paying it forward reminded me of my daily struggles with anxiety

Living with anxiety and panic disorder

People with anxiety aren’t crazy

 

I've always felt that discussing anxiety and depression are important. We are NOT alone. So here's more on my decision to go off anti-depressants.

 

«

»

9 COMMENTS

  • Brandi

    Thank you for sharing. I often wonder if my meds are making any difference at all. People don’t always understand depression – like you said – but when someone does it helps. I struggle to find a therapist that I can “click” with in order to help – so I just gave up. Maybe one day!!

    • Samantha
      AUTHOR

      That’s how I felt… I need to find one I click with when I move. That makes all the world of a difference!

  • Kristin Smith

    One of the coaches in my Beachbody upline has shared publically about her anxiety and her path to treat it more naturally. Of course exercise helps but she also did a cleanse and cut out things like dairy and gluten from her diet and slowly added them back in to see which things she had a reaction from. She also saw a naturopath Dr that was willing to discuss non-traditional methods but was also willing to prescribe meds as needed. She discovered that she was deficient in magnesium and so she takes a magnesium supplement along with a Tumeric supplement every day and recently was able to get off Zoloft and isn’t dealing with the anxiety she once was. Apparently, it is pretty common to be deficient in magnesium too. Might be worth checking out. I have been taking magnesium for my headaches but it has lots of different health benefits! Praying you find the right answer for your body!!

    • Samantha
      AUTHOR

      Thank you so much! I wonder if I know your coach because my friend is a Beachbody coach and has shared this with me! And funny that you said that because I asked my doctor about magnesium today but I’m going to get a second opinion on it. Because I’ve read that before too! I appreciate you commenting and the prayers <3 xo

  • Jessica

    I take magnesium and fish oil they both help with anxiety and the magnesium definitely has a calming affect. I give it to my oldest who hs ADHD too.

    • Samantha
      AUTHOR

      Thank you for suggesting this! My doctor gave me some magnesium so I hope to see some changes! Thank you 🙂

  • Angela Fresne

    Samantha, it’s a lifelong struggle for me. I have been on and off anti-depressants and anti-anxiety meds for many years. I am in recovery from a serious bout of acute depression worst anxiety attacks I have ever experienced after going off my meds a year ago. I recently started writing about it and wanted to share two blogs with you. One is about depression in my life – http://www.sheknows.com/community/living/other-me-depression. The other about the things I have learned which have helped me get to a place of peace despite the recurring depression. http://www.sheknows.com/community/health/my-search-happiness If there is anything here to help you, welcome to it. I have found Cognitive Behavior Therapy to be effective because it puts you in control with specific tools. Ps I also take magnesium and Omega 3 and calcium…….

    • Samantha
      AUTHOR

      Thank you for sharing these with me… I am going to read them right now! My doctor also prescribed me magnesium but I have been afraid to start taking it. DO you feel any side effects? Thank you for the support friend <3

      • Angela Fresne

        Never had side effects from magnesium! I have used St John’s Wort successfully BUT it won’t stop you fron getting acute depression or anxiety attacks unfortunately. It’s good to maintain mood when not in a serious depression but it doesn’t help in the midst of it.

what do you think?

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.