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I just wish people would understand.

Feb 01, 2012 - 8 comments

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Yup, this is me, and I'm not hiding anymore folks.

Forgive me if my grammar is bad, but I don't care to correct it any further. I've already tried proofreading this 3 times and it just freaks me out and reduces me to tears each time I read it.

So here it is folks. I don't know what to do anymore. This is coming straight out of my cerebral cortex and this is my last attempt at trying to communicate with that world what the problem with me is. So here it goes. I'm starting to think this may be my last journal entry here because I'm literally scared of communicating with a lot of people. I don’t trust a lot of people anymore.

Also, before we continue, I will have it let known that I have a very great understanding of psychology for a 24 year old who has never gone to college. I have never gone to college because my psychological disorders are too disabling: My dad told me I either had to keep a job to go to school, or I was out of luck. Well, as you will discover later in this journal entry, I can’t even keep a job.  Not only that, but trying to work at a Fast Food restaurant was like reliving high school, and I would rather kill myself than have to go through that experience again. I poured my blood and sweat into my job, and in the end, it seemed like to me that it was all for nothing.

This is painful for me to write because the memories themselves are still open wounds, and after a year and a half of therapy, and finding out my therapist/counsel doesn't see eye to eye with me on the medication abuse I've been put through, I have now lost yet another therapist, and I have no one left in the medical field I feel I can connect to. I am refusing connection from all that I have been through because I just don't want to be in pain anymore. Apparently people don't understand. I'm just hoping this journal entry makes and helps someone understand, because I feel so alone inside this body.

Before you continue, you acknowledge that you are reading this at your own disposal, and these opinions are my own and they do not represent the opinions or administrators here at MedHelp, or other contributors like me. This is a document of a personal experience I am recording that I feel compelled to share with others, and not to scare, but to educate, and most importantly, to protect others. My Cymbalta rant in the comments section was not just me sticking up for myself, but I know that if I were anyone else here, I would never want them to feel the way I do, and that's not an excuse, that's the truth, and I am not trying to justify my actions: All I can do is explain them.

if you want to try prescription medications, that’s your own choice, and I won’t stop anyone, but do know this.  If you think your child or someone you know has a psychological disorder, and it is also causing you a world of hurt just to watch, because you are like me and you don't want to see your loved ones suffer: Then do whatever you can to save them. BUT, if you are going to give them medication that I have COMPLETELY have lost faith in, then PLEASE, make sure all psychological evaluations are THOROUGH, and if you have to wait 3 months for a proper evaluation for your child, THEN WAIT. Don’t rush your child into drugs. That’s the biggest mistake you could ever make. Don't ever let them misdiagnose your child either. It seems like that medical misdagnosises and terminated health insurance policy and meds with adverse reactions are the only story of my life anymore.

I would never want any of your children to be sent down this dark path that I have walked. because all they ever did to me as a child was send me in and send me out of offices, and I had no control over it or any say in the matter. Thus leading to my current beliefs right now.

And I honestly don't care what you believe though, and I don't mean that in disrespect, but I came here to connect with people, and I want to connect despite what your belief is. I DON’T CARE WHAT YOU BELIEVE OR WHO YOU ARE. I just wish someone understood. I just want to connect.

So now, beginning with my medical history.

When I was 13 years old, I can remembering acting like what people would describe as "crazy", and I would bounce off the wall. I guess my mother was seeing this when I was entering puberty. I was such a mess in school that all of my friends today who were once my friends from elementary school, middle school, and high school are dropping off of the earth. I was diagnosed with ADHD, and the first medication I was given for it was Adderal.

Adderal was the first prescription medication for ADHD I ever took. I'm also 100% sure it was the first prescription medication I had took. Heck, I was never even prescribed anything for a broken collarbone in 4th grade. I didn't remember what it was like coming down off of Adderal until recently: Nightmares, emotional outbursts, intensified effects...I was 14, and I knew nothing of the risks, nor did my parents. I don't remember how long I was on Adderal for, but the comedown severely interfered with my regular functioning, just like it is now. I feel like a junkie. That is what my friends have labeled me as anyways. My friend even called me a pill-popping housewife the other day, and the anxiety off of that alone was so bad and it nearly shook me to tears. And I don't get why I do that. I just don't. But I do.

Next on the list is Concerta, a time released version of Ritalin. (This is probably why I have listed Ritalin in my prescription history, but I'm just barely finding out I was not prescribed both.)

Concerta. There are just no words for this prescription. The idea of Concerta is brilliant, and the fact that it can keep pumping out medication in the body like this continuously fascinates me. What doesn't fascinate me is the many people who thought I acted like a crack addict. I guess my mother had just accepted the fact that this was going to be "normal" for me. I remember everything was amplified on it, just like it was when I gave Concerta a second shot in early 2011. Other than things being amplified, I don't remember a whole lot of my Concerta days, but I know this for a fact: I was suffering from depression-like features while taking it. I remember walking across the street on Concerta as a kid and my dad telling me to smile, and I replied back to him "Why? I don't see the reason anymore." This was me at 14 or 15 years old. As anxiety increased, we returned to the doctor, and she prescribed me with Celexa to counter-act the anxiety.

At this point after being prescribed the Celexa. My mother told me I was on this for 2 or 3 months and all it ever did was put me to sleep, so no wonder I don't have very many memories of it. Even as I was experiencing these symptoms, the doctors decreased my prescription strength, and the results did not change. My mother will tell you they pulled me off of Celexa because it wasn't working, and they were switching me off without breaks. Talk about hazardous; if I had been as near as careful as I am today AND smart, I would have never let them do this. After the treatment of Celexa failed, I was immediately put on Zoloft.

I remained on Zoloft for about 3 years, starting at 16 years old. I had such a creative drive for art, and I was drawing something ALL OF THE TIME. I just loved drawing. But the Zoloft was where I started to begin losing my passion for art, and I locked myself away in my room for the next 4 years of my life when I wasn't at school and played video games all day and kept to myself, with my parents confused on what to do with me next. It was clear to my physicians that ADHD was still a problem. So they decided to try an ADHD/Anti-depressant combo, and from what I'm told, there's a possibility I fried my brain doing this. But I was only doing what I thought was best for me, but it's only the doctors that thought what was best for me in all honestly...

At this point, I was now 17, the year was 2004, and my ADHD med included with the Zoloft initially was Seroquel. Then we found out it knocked me out completely, what medical practitioners define as “hypersomnia” or excessive sleep. So then, I was switched over to Stratera. My mother tells me is this is where I COMPLETELY changed, and not in a positive fashion. I lost care for socializing with other people in the outside world. It all seemed pointless when there were better people to socialize with on the internet, especially when I was being bullied at school for being gay and being physically assaulted, and having half of the blame of the assault placed on me. I still remember hiding in the girl's locker room and calling my mother telling her I was done with it all. I wanted to die right then and there. I hated high school. No prescription medication was helping me. But I still remained on the pills regardless. We discontinued the Stratera, and switched me to Medidate. I remained on this combo for YEARS.

During these years, I would try expressing myself creatively in other ways, but I found myself so anxious by people on the internet. I still remember to this day uploading my self-created movies I made at high school over a Peer To Peer network, and people would ask things like "Was your mother using crack when she was impregnated with you?" At this point, I shut down, I could have cared less about my movies, my art, or anything anymore. At least I wasn't killing myself. But I just sat away in my room and hid away from the world, and decided to go into a virtual one instead (World of Warcraft), and I got hooked because it became the only thing that meant anything to me. All of my friends dropped off the face of the earth, and everyone who was gay around the area I lived hated me, and I STILL DON'T UNDERSTAND WHY!!!

At 20 years old, in early January of 2008, I was finally off of Zoloft and Medidate completely. But this is where I suffered another major psychotic break, leading me to close myself off from the internet COMPLETELY, and live in a state of fear of self-induced fear and paranoia. This was me without medication: I felt like I was a machine hell-bent on destroying myself. So I went to see a doctor, and he put me on Ambilify which caused me to throw up the day I took it, and then a week later he threw me on Prozac. This is where all hell broke loose.

Prozac increased the amount of dark thoughts swarming through my brain. It was absolute chaos. There is just no other way to describe it. I was having bursts of thoughts and images in my head of me assaulting small children physically and sexually. It started right as I was taking the Prozac, and if it weren't for my best friend Scott, I would have killed myself. Scott, my counselor/therapist, and my boyfriend were the three people who knew this secret up until the publishing of this article. Needless to say, my moral drive begged me to discontinue the Prozac, and the dark thoughts persisted for 2 more months, and these thoughts made me seclude myself to my room out of fear that I would hurt my own 2 year old nephew that lived with us. My depression increased by an unbelievable amount, and I sat in my room beating down on myself for thinking these thoughts as they continued to swarm through my head.

I can't even begin to tell any of you the shame I had in myself, and how much I wanted to kill myself when I started having thoughts of harming children: Because I want to raise a child one day, NOT HURT THEM. As I type this right now, tears stream down my cheeks because I KNOW IT'S WRONG. I KNOW IT'S WRONG. I didn't want to have these thoughts in my head. But the fact that I had something like that in me happen and that I was capable of such a thing was just too agonizing that this was where I drew the line. This was where I was done trying prescription medication. I tried to pick up and move on. And I guess it worked. But there was more chaos coming. At this point I was paranoid and out of control, and it wasn't until May 2010 that all of my compulsive behavior caused me to have yet ANOTHER major psychotic break.

By this time, I had developed what people define as hypochondria, and there are breadcrumbs of proof all over the internet now. It's in my MedHelp posts. I've even been called insane by someone on here (and that kind of hurt my feelings, but it was probably because I didn't understand what they really meant.) I was being tested for STDs like crazy because it was a HUGE social stigma, and if I was having sex with people, I didn't want to hurt anyone. I thought it was already bad in February when I tried telling someone to stop touching me in ways I didn't them touching me.

But it happened, and I remember it as well today as I do now: I went to bed that night after the encounter, went straight to sleep without a second thought, then the next thing I know, I'm awake 3 hours later suffering from a hypochondria-based panic attack. Good God. I can't even tell you how bad it was. This was where I had to go back to the doctor again and be thrown back on medication. She put me back on Celexa again, but I had no idea it was Celexa because I was being prescribed the generic brand. Needless to say, it didn't work. We tried another medication I can't even remember, and that didn't work either.

Well, all hell broke loose in May 2010, when basically the message I got (or what I thought) was that it doesn't matter what you do: You're going to hurt someone no matter what. This...broke me even further. An outpatient clinic diagnosed me with HSV-2 (Genital Herpes) based off what I would find out later in the future was a faulty blood test (and it is all documented thoroughly here on MedHelp, just check my posts). I immediately contacted all of my sexual partners, including the 18 year old man who had manipulated his way into having sex with me, and I went further down into a depression.

4 months later, I would discover the test was a false positive, but the damage had already been done. I was glad to know I didn't have it, but 10 minutes after hearing the good news, I dipped back into a depression. Then I discovered my herpes situation was the talk around where I lived. Not to forget that years earlier someone spread a rumor around the valley telling everyone I was HIV positive after I told him we should be responsible and get tested. The guy who sexually manipulated me knew about this, then I explained to him the situation, and THEN he manipulated me too. Yeah, this was no fair to me. I just wanted to die.

It was June of 2010, and then one of the most influential persons and best friends in my whole life, a man known by the name of Lynn Moss, died at the age of 27 from lung cancer. He was not a smoker, and they said he had this form of cancer since the day he was born. He knew a month before he died, and then he died...and I didn't even get a chance to say goodbye. I still hate myself for never writing him. I loved him. He was one of the only persons who truly understood me and accepted me even when I acted like a complete idiot. I miss him so much. I want Lynn back and I want us to grow up with one another laughing as our old bodies fall apart. But he's dead. And there's nothing I can do about it.

At this point, I couldn't take it anymore. After going into work on my day off for extra hours, I discovered I couldn't do it. I called and begged my doctor, because I just couldn't take it anymore. This is where I began taking Xanax.

Xanax made (and still makes me) sleepy, but at least it helped me cope. But I found that I didn't want to stop using it because it was working overall. Now today, it is almost like I can't sleep without taking it. I shake uncontrollably sometimes until I take a pill to calm me down. My doses are as low as 0.5mg. I have a friend who is like this too who is my same age. This was the point where my anxiety got so bad, that it was starting to manifest itself into physical forms. My ears began ringing, the doctors could not find any source of infection, and they tried several anti-biotics on me, and my ears still ring to this day. The more anxiety I have, the worse the ringing gets. I had to quit my job because of this, because my job involved working with telephones. Whenever I tried working, the ringing would get worse, and I just gave up and quit my job because I didn't know what else to do. I had NEVER hated myself more in my life than I did at this point. Not until recently, anyway.

I made the mistake of going back on Concerta in February of 2011. I was 23 years old as this point. At first, my moods were AMAZING. I felt GREAT. Life was amazing again. Maybe I could function? I even came out of my room and I hugged my mother. But the beneficial aspects of the medication slowly disappeared, and the psychologist inside of me told me that I need to be on a slightly higher dose to balance everything out. This was going to work, I knew it. My doctor bumped my medication up from 18mg to 36mg.

3 days later, I started hearing voices in my head, and I was obsessively compulsively cleaning my parent’s kitchen, and my anxiety was OUT OF CONTROL. I still remember sitting there to my mother as she told me in these exact words verbatim: “I don’t think I have ever seen you this strung out in my entire life.” I was throwing fits, I was going crazy, and I couldn’t take it anymore. I even tried going back down, and the anxiety was still out of control. If this isn’t a sign that I don’t have ADD/ADHD, then I don’t know what is. This was the end all for me: I was done with prescription medication except for Xanax. I didn’t trust it anymore. It literally scared me. Things started to get better though as I tapered off of the drug.

Then the man I first told that I EVER loved found me again in May of 2011. We just remained friends for about a month, then 2 months after that we were talking daily to each other, and he was keeping me so distracted. He introduced me to people I never thought existed. There was a world I had never experienced. On Labor Day of 2011, we decided to to get back together. We are still together to the day of this writing. He is the veil of light in my bleak world, and I don’t think I could love anyone more than I love him. Never.

Then in the last week of October 2011, I had a falling out with my family. My dad yelled at me after I started to have an anxiety attack that caused made me cry, and when he yelled at me I told him to screw off, and then he pushed me, and THE MOMENT he pushed me...repressed memories I hadn’t remembered for years resurfaced. They were memories of my dad kicking me on the floor as a kid, and him yelling and freaking out at me. At this point, my anxiety skyrocketed and I nearly propelled myself into suicide. That was when I called my boyfriend and begged him to get me away from this place, because if I stayed, I knew I would have been a danger to myself. So that night, I ripped all of my posters down from the wall, and decided to transition into becoming an independent adult. I was ready. I had a job. I had the money. And my company could transfer me too, because we had already been talking about it. I knew it my heart this was the right way to go.

Then in late November of 2011, my transfer didn’t go through. I got so depressed that I began cutting myself for the first time in my life. With the knife in my right hand and looking at the cut marks on my left arm, I finally had realized it. I DIDN’T WANT TO FEEL LIKE THIS ANYMORE. My boyfriend had been on Effexor and he was talking to me about it, and at this point I was convinced: I HAD TO DO SOMETHING TO SAVE MYSELF. THIS WAS IT.

So, I went on Effexor. The first thing that happened after I took this drug, THE VERY FIRST PILL, I threw up, and at work nonetheless, 45 minutes into my 8 hour shift. This was in a fast food enviorment, and anyone who knows and follows health code to the book like I do knows you CAN’T work fast food if you are this sick. I weighed 160 before I started Effexor. In 3 weeks time, I was 144 pounds (according to my boyfriend’s WiiFit). And after more than a month, it persisted, and I had to take a leave of absence from my job so I could get better. Whenever someone touched me, my entire body was cold to the touch. The last day I worked was December 23rd, 2011. That day I was holding back tears from increased depression and suicide idealization. I had kept a steady release of Effexor into my system, and even tried taking it in halfs. NOTHING WORKED.

It was at this point I was pretty sure I was never going to be able to work again. At 24 years old. Someone with so much potential and intelligence. Potential and intelligence I just want to share with the world. But I couldn’t hold a job, which means in America you can’t go to college (or that’s how my dad has told me how it is), and I just want to go back to school, get a college education, and do something I am good at, and just make enough so I can get by. That’s all I want. But I starting to doubt that I can ever have that, and after seeing the state deny disability to one of my dear friends support for her child’s cerebral palsy, I completely lost faith in EVERYTHING. At this point, I felt as though I handed the controls of my life over to my boyfriend, because I don’t know anyone else who could help. I didn’t want to be someone who was using him either. I love him.

So then we go to the doctor, and she urges me to try Cymbalta. Well, let’s see what has happened so far: I have a picture on my phone and photographic evidence on YouTube of cut marks on my arms, and the amount of them being in MULTIPLE DIGITS. Maybe I wasn’t the right person to be on this drug. Maybe I’m not the right person to be on any drug. Maybe I’m just a person who is better off dead.

With the Cymbalta, I started thinking that there were alien voices speaking to me in my head telling me what to put down on paper. I would write, WRITE, AND WRITE ENDLESSLY to satisfy the voice just so I could give him whatever he wanted. At one point I was on my boyfriend’s kitchen floor. This was before I started having alien voices in my head: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ptUf3SsJaFA - And this is afterward, BEGGING for someone to help me because I no longer knew how to communicate with anyone in a physical form: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GRR6PNzMEh4

Now I am suffering from Cymbalta withdrawals because I can’t even take a low dose of this medication without going crazy. I have no clue what to do next. I don’t know how I am not dead yet. Most of all, I just don’t get it anymore. Why me? Why do I have to be a junkie? Because I don’t want to be. I just want to be a normal functioning member of society. I know the state will deny my disability, I can already see it happening, and I can see the financial crash of my entire boyfriend’s family because I brought it on. It will all be my fault. So I keep thinking: Maybe if I took myself out of the equation, then the world would probably be a little less chaotic. But nope, I’m still here. And I hate myself for letting myself live sometimes. I don’t get it. There’s no point to it anymore when all there is to life is nothing but suffering. But apparently people still want me to live, so yeah.

I’m trying hard not to give in. I’m fighting tooth and nail. But really, what future does someone like me have left? A prescription pill addicted junkie who no longer has health insurance, and has lost complete trust in prescription medication? Someone who probably has an IQ off the wall, but can not function anymore?

Forgive me if I’m so negative about prescription medications now. But this is my experience. And it has ruined my life. I mean well. I really do. That’s why I freaked out in my comment post the other day, it’s because I don’t want anybody to suffer what I have gone through. No one deserves this, and no one should have to go through this. Especially me.

So I’m wrapping this up here. I hope this gives a little perspective to some of you and helps you understand...I’m just someone who wants to evolve and survive like the rest of you. But there’s nothing you can give me that will help. I’ve been dealt a crap hand of cards, and my brain is rewired to the point where I don’t even know how to cope properly anymore. But whatever...this is what it is or whatever...whatever you want to say. I’m done writing.

Before I conclude this, I would like to thank Grace and many other contrinuters from the Herpes community for saving my life from what could have made my life an even worse hell. I was on Valtrex for months for something I never even had. It feels like my whole life has been about misdiagnoses and mistreatments. And all I want to do is lay my head in my hands and cry for the rest of time.

This is coming from someone who has never done any hard-core drugs in my entire lifespan.

And I feel like I’ve had a needle poked into my arm with a strap around my bicep my entire life.

So here are the complete list of medications used to treat my "disabilities" in chronological order of when administering first began:

Adderal
Concerta
Celexa
Zoloft
Seroquel
Stratera
Medidate
Prozac
Celexa again,
Xanax,
Concerta again
Effexor
Cymbalta

Also, I found these health notes I wrote myself with the Effexor on Google Docs:
"Decreased Sex Drive/Difficulty achieving orgasm
Decreased appetite, increased stomach volatility and frequent stomach and abdomen pain (Pain does not feel like an infection or flu-bug, and is quite consistent at times)
Crying Spells (has been happening more often)
Increased anxiety and depression:
-Anxiety attacks are more crippling, Xanax usage increasing
-Depression feels better but even worse at the same time
Insomnia, which I have been trying to treat with Xanax but is only mildly successful most of the time (Melatonin works better)
Dry mouth can be quite severe at times
Weight loss, dropped around 10 to 15 pounds in a time period of 2 to 4 weeks
Increased social anxiety and problems interacting with others outside of my partner, including:
-Increased desire of avoiding other people (except for a very few)
-Difficulty with socially interacting
-Emotional responses have been defined as "unusual" by close ones
Increased anger problems and irritability
Increased mood swings
Memory issues, forgetfulness
Frequent flashbacks, both good and bad.
Frequent nervous breakdowns, at first crying was frequent but sometimes I forget how to do it?
Suicide idealization decreased, but nervous breakdowns can cancel out my train of thought and send me into a mode where I can have scary relapses
Some activities that I once found satisfying are difficult to enjoy in the long-run due to depression, i.e. fixing computers
Chills and goosebumps"

I am not asking for someone to diagnose me. I don't want to know what "disorder" I have. I just want to feel better. And as you can see, I have serious doubts that I will ever get better, because I'm literally scared of prescription medication that I am now denying myself sleep because I don't want to take a Xanax right now at this time of writing. I'm literally scared. And I don't think there's an answer to anything anymore. I want to believe, but I don't anymore.

Thank you for reading.

My name is Randy Christian Lee. I am 24 years old, and I live Utah. And I can't stay silent any longer.

Comments
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by nursegirl6572, Feb 01, 2012
Well, Randy...I think you writing this journal is a wonderful thing and I would encourage you to keep doing it...keep writing, getting your thoughts and feelings out there.  Even if not ONE soul ever read it, it is cathartic for YOU!

You've been through an awful lot and it's a shame you've had to endure so much at a young age.  When I made the comments to you about the medications based on your status regarding Cymbalta, I didn't mean it as a way to minimize what you've been through, I just wanted to share with you that for a lot of people, medications ARE a miracle, they are a lifesaver, and I would hate for anyone to take medications out of the equation for themselves based on someone else's horror story.  I'm a big proponent of meds AND therapy used together.  Not only have meds helped ME tremendously, but I've also witnessed first hand some incredible progress both in the medical field, and on this very site.  There are countless tales of people coming here at their wits end, housebound, desperate with anxiety and depression...and you can read their stories as they start addressing their issues with meds...and within a few months, they change, they get their life back.  I wish it could have been that way for you also.

While much less common than the success stories, there are sadly many people with stories like yours.  For various reasons...people are extremely sensitive to meds, they are improperly diagnosed and put on an inappropriate med...you name it.  You are NOT alone, and I think you will find that out in your travels...you will find people like yourself on sites like this.  And, while that doesn't change anything for you, it should at least give you a little peace that you are NOT alone in this world.  My own personal opinion of your situation is that the meds used to treat your different conditions are working against each other.  Meds used for ADD/ADHD often make depression and anxiety worse, and vice versa.  Thankfully, some people manage to find the right doctor who understands this, who is willing to take time to find a combination that will work to treat ALL aspects of the person.  I would urge you to keep trying, keep looking for the right therapist and the right doctor.  I certainly understand your passionate stance against meds at this point, after all you've endured...but know that there IS hope.  You're a young man and you have a lifetime to keep trying.  I'm sure it won't be easy, but there is a good chance with perserverance, you'll get there.

There will always be a debate about medication.  We see that on the anxiety forum every day, and that's okay.  It's a unique decision for each individual person, and while you and I may disagree about med therapy, I totally agree that the decision to start a medication should be entered into with a lot of thought and only after carefully weighing the options.  As I said before, I also think that for most people, it is imperative to partake in both therapy AND medications for the most optimal outcome.  Meds treat the symptoms, but therapy is vital in teaching coping techniques and life skills...how to live with these conditions, which surely isn't easy.  

Again, you are FAR from alone, most of us have been in a similar dark place like you.  I have been housebound before, unable to go to the gas station for 5 minutes without having a debilitating panic attack.  I too, like you, was just lost and scared and fed up.  But like so many others, I kept pushing...found the right therapist, the right doctor, and I got my life back.

Stick around and read your heart out...this site is full of uplifting success stories and the people here are all here with a common bond...everyone wants freedom from the shackles these conditions put on us.  I'm sorry you are going through this...but never give up the fight.  Some struggles are harder than others, and it may take you a lot more work than others to get there, but I really feel you will.  There are a lot of options for treatment than never involve taking medication.  You have loads of choices.

I really hope my note to you didn't upset you, that was never my intention...but I have always been very vocal about making SURE we encourage each other to try to remain FAIR when speaking about something we are so passionate about, because people come here desperate for advice and input.  If someone new on Cymbalta came here and read your status, it would have likely scared the crap out of them.  I'm not saying not to share what you've been through...on the contrary, I think it is important that you DO, just be vigilant about making sure you convey that these were YOUR experiences and that not everyone will go through the same thing.

You have our total support...stick around and keep writing.  You are amazingly articulate, you have a kind heart and are extremely intelligent.  A lot of people on this site could beneift from those qualities of yours...and YOU can beneift from reading about others' experiences.

Hang in there and keep talking.

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by RainLover71, Feb 01, 2012
My word,you have an extremely high intelligence level,you have potential to be highly successful in life and university is an option for someone so well versed with an excellent insight,I'm sorry about the pain you have suffered and continue to suffer.Medication is a trial and error thing until you find the right meds for you.Never give up the fight,you are never alone and can vent whenever you feel like it.Always believe there is hope,I do,I have had some dark days and now things are so much better,there was a stage in my life when I thought it couldn't get any worse but that time has passed and I feel healed,you can to.Top journal entry,the ones from the heart are always the best.

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by Pickums1283, Feb 01, 2012
Hi Randy:

This has to be one of the most incredible posts I have read on here. I wish I could put my own problems into words like this.

I have been on the negative end of many psychiatric medications (and the mental health care system in general) and about 4 years ago I stopped taking any and had actually started to feel a lot better than I had in a long time. Right now I am having a very bad time with depression and anxiety and I just don't know what to do. I am so miserable and completely emotionally paralyzed from the anxiety and while I have no plan or really any desire to actually die, the idea of suicide is starting to sound better and better. I am more than willing to talk to someone, provided I can find someone who I can trust, but I really do not want to go back on medication. And I know that is going to be pushed. And I do not trust these medications anymore. And the constant push for these meds is making me lose my faith in the mental health care system.

I have been on over a dozen medications but the two that stick out the most to me are Wellbutrin and Effexor. Wellbutrin made me horribly suicidal, bad enough to actually formulate an entire plan and then landing me in the hospital. And Effexor.....Effexor is the devil. I was on it twice and the second time I went off of it, it was an absolute nightmare. I had really bad withdrawal. Nausea, dizziness, violent mood swings, migraines. Every time I drove to work or school, I wanted to floor my car into whatever strong structure was close by. My whole body felt like it was being electrocuted every time I moved my head. I would get really bad chills and would put something on to warm up and in no time, I was soaked. I still to this day do not know how I ever made it through the withdrawal without harming myself. This was in 2005 and I am still feeling the effects of it. I still get brain zapped. I do not believe I am the same person since I stopped taking it.

I am 28 years old and have not finished college yet and I would like to return and get a degree and have a nice job, and I too feel like I am never going to have that. I feel like I am going to be nothing but a lazy mental slug. And it only makes my depression worse. I am sorry you feel this way, because it *****. And people that tell you that oh your condition is easily treatable (don't know if you get that, but I get it a lot) have obviously never been mentally ill and/or had to deal with trying to get treated. I don't think many people realize just how awful these drugs can make you feel. They are not always miracles and they can in fact make everything worse in some situations. I wish I had someone like you in my personal life because not many people in my life seem to get it.

Keep up the excellent writing,
Nikki

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by maatson, Feb 03, 2012
Not commonly one comes across some real material like this with lot of insight. The very fact that you are able to look this far shows maturity beyond your age. While I may not agree verbatim about psychiatry medications, yet does make one realize that any medication may not help one and all, and could well have deleterious effects in some.After all these medications act on chemical messengers, or receptors in the nervous system and there may be some benefitting or otherwise depending on their constitution.
I do not believe that man is just a brain and nothing more.We are conscious beings beyond genes and environment.Though medicines are help, holding one self to his or her self image and to become creative (like what you have shown) would go a long way in recovery and gain stability.
I thank you for this wonderful presentation. Keep it up and you would go a long way.
My best wishes.

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by flow1987, Feb 03, 2012
Agreed maatson, self image is a problem. But I'm still getting random sporatic anxiety attacks like crazy now, and they tell my I should have come down off of the Cymbalta by now. I'm not sure what to think at the moment, I'm starting to think my body is super sensitive to medications. And addition....or dependence, rather, is something I depise inside of what feels from time to time like a walking corpse. It's a scary feeling.

My vocational counselor from the state has wondered if I had Bipolar, which is interesting, because she has been right about a lot of things so far. My therapist/psychological-counselor has been dead on wrong a lot things as well, but while she has peaceful ways of practicing, things with her just didn't work out. I'm pretty sure she has been through a lot, but things were definitely different in her time, and this is a different world today for sure.

My vocational counsoler also suggested the idea that I might be suffering from an identity crisis, and if I remember correctly, I believed I denied it...because I just didn't think it was true. But maybe I should have never underestimated the power of denial. I really do feel brainwashed, and I can't act like the person I want to unless I am on something. That fact in itself is just depressing.

Obsessive-compulsive behaviors are increasing too. But I think it's a good thing, I've been so depressed lately that I brushed my teeth twice in a row tonight because I got so low that I didn't do any hygienic activities for almost A WEEK. I haven't done that since I was 8 years old! I also cut my own hair and styled it today, and it looks great. I'm thinking of ways around it, and my boyfriend is helping me too. (It's really nice to have light like someone you love in the moments of bleak despair.)

But the withdrawals persist, and this stuff's comedown is quite insane I tell you! It manifests itself in a physical and psychological form. And I just talked to a close friend of mine today, and he says that his comedown off of this medication was quite bad too. I think it's very important for doctors to tell their patients that the increased risk of suicide is quite common in some with this medication. I guess being a doctor is learning experience though, and I just hope my Doctors can take this page and learn from it, because everything on here is recorded as accurately as possible. I doubt I screwed up with how obsessive I am with fact checking.

But still, I'm not labeling myself with any disorder because I'm just not sure what is with me anymore. Not to be Debbie Downer, but that's the truth. And I'm not sure if I want to leave it to the doctors to decide that for me either. Also, I can't physically function off of this insomnia, I swear.

I'm cutting it short here, I haven't slept for a good 20 or 21 hours now and I need to give it a try.

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by LIZZIE LOU, Feb 03, 2012
from everything that i have read of yours...i tend to agree with your vocational counselor, regarding the bipolar diagnosis.

one thing to know - and/or remember...if someone is bipolar, taking antidepressants WITHOUT a mood stabilizer can cause more harm than good.

my daughter in law is bipolar...and when i read your story...your journals...watch your videos...it's like reading HER life story.  she suffered for years and fought not to take meds also.  of course she just self medicated herself with illegal drugs instead of prescription.  after being hospitalized...3 times in the last year and a half...she is finally trying hard to take control of her life and do whatever she has to do to keep her mood stable.  her last dr is "spot on" and we feel blessed to have found her.  she lives with me...so i know first hand what mental illness...especially bipolar disorder, left untreated...can do to someone.  

she has come a long way...still has a way to go...but compared to who she was a year ago, she is 80% better.  she is a little manic right now because she decided to take it upon herself to cut her mood stabilizer in half...NOT A GOOD THING ! ! !  it is her mood stabilizer that keeps "the thoughts" out of her head...and i can tell you that it's not enjoyable to learn that she wanted me dead ! ! !  i'm hoping that she continues to understand how important HER MEDS are to her well being AND to those around her...including her daughter.

i am not a dr and i'm not trying to diagnose you...i'm just offering my opinion on what i see and feel from what you have shared on medhelp.  i strongly urge you to step up to the plate and keep trying to find a dr who can help you.  i worry about your decision to come off meds, as i fear this will throw you into a deeper depression, followed by a manic episode.

you are the only one who can help yourself and i know that you sometimes feel hopeless and helpless...but you DONT have to live this way.  

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by flow1987, Feb 04, 2012
If anything, I am very scared of hard-core drugs (especially after watching "Requiem for a Dream" and being through this, because the intensity has been matching the movie A LOT lately). But with the dark places I have been lately, I have seriously considered a lot of things just to get by, but I haven't done them because my moral drive (or conscience, whatever you want to call it) is INTENSE. I guess that's what I get for being raised around Christianity, and I'm not saying that's a bad thing at all; but if I didn't have values from both sides, then I wouldn't be the good person inside that I am today. I mean, I may no longer believe in God, but that doesn't stop me from being the highly emotional, sensitive, and loving boy that I have always been, ever since I can remember.

I just find it disappointing that for someone like me, who is so high functioning and brilliant, that normal conditions are now to the point where can't even get out of bed without having my cardiovascular system getting a workout. The moment I have gotten out of bed in the morning in the past week, my heart just starts racing. The moment my heart races, my anxiety increased with it as well. I am absolutely sure that it isn't what is defined as hypochondriasis, or even health-related OCD. I just keep sitting here waiting for these withdrawals to end. And when I got up this morning at 4AM, I was getting nausea. Jeez louise...

I don't even need to go on Wikipedia or do a Google search to see if Cymbalta has physical withdrawal symptoms; because I already personally know. There needs to be a comprehensive and well thought out strategy to bring someone down off of this medication if side effects like this happen happen to someone. Eli Lilly and Company need to do this TODAY. Either that or someone else like me will, but I refuse to sacrifice myself to be my own personal human lab-rat, especially when I'm already in such an extremely fragile condition.

This is also important to note as well; I have probably had crying fits every day while on Cymablta and Effexor, and the mood swings have increased on it (so yes, I do have bipolar-like features), and they became worse on the medication comedown. I will explain further.

My mood swings on Effexor were so extreme.

Last month, I lost track of where I put my Effexor refill while I was in my car. This drove me nuts, because I had lost my initial fill of Effexor the same way a month before. I went looking for it like crazy in my car, and then I just fell to the gravel seconds later because I couldn't find it. I started crying uncontrollably, and I bruised my bottom in the process. The next thing I know, my anxiety spirals EVEN higher, and then I am running into my house looking for the meds, while freaking out uncontrollably in the process. And when I define freak out; in this situation I was starting to throw things around in my room looking for it, and I was throwing a full blown temper tantrum like a child. The thought going through my head at the time was this: "Oh god, oh no, they're gone, again, and I always lose stuff, just like I always do, and just like I always have. I'm such a damn klutz and I hate myself for and I need to drop off of this earth and just die already, because I can't take it anymore, and it feels like there is not a damn thing that can help me anymore."

The next thing I know, I'm in a bathroom, scrounging 1,000 miles per second, trying to find something to cut with (I'm not joking with you or making this up I PROMISE, it was THIS intense). I kept looking, and I couldn't find anything. No knifes, no nothing, not even a damn shaving razor. So I fell to the floor, curled into a ball on my butt between the spaces of the cupboard and the toilet I could barely fit between, and I cried uncontrollably for what felt like forever. It was more realistically 3 or 4 minutes, and it ended when my boyfriend came and peeled me off of the bathroom floor and talked me out of it. But oh my god, this was bad.

Things like this didn't start happening on a regular basis until I started putting SNRI prescription medications into my system. Now that I am coming down, the crying is just as worse, except it isn't suicidal...my emotions are just VERY volatile. Now I just cry and have uncontrollable anxiety that has no trigger, or no reason for happening. It just happens. It is stretching my capacity to remain calm VERY thin, for as you can probably tell, I'm fighting REALLY hard here not to be in the hospital. I don't want to be institutionalized or away from my boyfriend either, nor do I want anyone to have to pay for my medical bills, because I KNOW I can't pay for them myself, and I am sick of having to feel like I am dependent on other people or my parents for things like this, especially at 24 years old. I was hoping I would be much farther ahead in life by now.

And I have been in dark places myself the past month (I don't mean to one-up you or anything Lizzie, I am just documenting, and that goes for this entire journal comment as well.)

I'll give you some examples.

I did lose my health insurance, but it has now been reinstated. However, during the time of not having any insurance, any income, or no way to hold a job and help pay rent, I considered doing unorthodox things just to get by (non-violent things of course). That freaked me out, because I don't want to resort to unorthodox methods. I just want to get by like everyone else. Now I'm applying for disability, and I fear that I'm going to be denied...and I am so scared of it. If I am denied, I will go into a personal financial hell, along with my renters, and I will have to move back in with my parents, away from the man that I love, and cancel the college education I was going to get.

I have found that I just can not function in the lower portions of the industry (fast food, phone surveys, meaningless statistical collections over the phone, pre-college jobs, etc.), but I can function in the ones that require a lot of brain power. I may not have a college education, but I was reading Carl Sagan's "Contact" in the fifth grade. Thus why I have said that I know I have a lot of potential. I just wish someone would help me out, and I'm hoping the government will come and help me out in my time of despair, but you can probably cross the government off the table. I have seen people in my comment feed that are far more messed up than me who are being denied disability, when in fact they are the ones who deserve it.

It is so hard to want to GIVE GIVE GIVE as much as you want to this world, especially when you have felt like in the past 24 years that you have gotten no-where with it. That's why I always enjoy coming to MedHelp: If I know I have made another person's day better, then it makes mine better. That is why I have set up a local area network that will keep all of the computers in my renter's house connected together on a local area network, so even if the internet modem is disconnected, we all stay online, and our computers continue to communicate with one another over the network, providing file sharing, peer to peer, and other services. I'm about to set up an HTTP server on my old laptop, as a matter of fact.

I don't only mix music and share it on the internet for free. Heck, I even donate to the site I'm on and I don't make ANY money off of it. I would love to get a college education and make a living off of this somehow, but I don't think the recording industry see eye to eye on how business should be done. I think music should be shared with EVERYONE. If I ever sold my music, you would still be able to download it off of the internet for free. That's what I want to do, because to me music isn't about money, it's about creating something inspiring and amazing. That is how I have ALWAYS thought of it.

I also do graphic design too. I taught myself how to use Adobe Flash, Fireworks, Photoshop, and Illustrator, thus meaning I can create animations, do image manipulation, and make them flow with each other seamlessly. I even ltaught myself Adobe Soundbooth the other day, which is an audio mastering program.

Which goes without saying, I am amazing with sound design. Just go look for MQ6 on SoundCloud, and then you'll see what I'm talking about. (Soundcloud.com/MQ6).

I am also good at video editing. I edited this myself (Tori Amos is one of my biggest inspirations): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_O0XvHa-TM

I'm a good writer too, and I don't think I need to prove that any further. (Regardless of how many grammar problems this post may have).

I do so many things so well. I just wish someone would give me a break, you know? I just don't know how to prove this to a business or an employer anymore, especially when most of the ones I tried applying for growing up would never call me back, when I would try so hard to get through to them. I would call then once a week and they would always tell me: "Can we call you back?" Hell, even my last employer denied me a transfer even when they had the space, and my performance was praised over and over again by my boss. It even gets me even more upset to think that someone probably just as hard working as me was given a transfer without a problem 6 months prior to me asking my employer for one. I just don't get it.

I'm going to leave this here. I need to get up and do something else, no offense or anything. I just proofread this a million times, and I keep getting interrupted, then I lose my train of thought, and then it just raises my anxiety even further. So I HAVE to end this journal comment here.

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by lizmar200198, Jun 19, 2014
Hi Randy, I was just searching for info on Concerta and I came across your journal. Very powerful and touchy... I hope you're doing much better these days...

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