Weaning

I had my first bad experience with UTSW today. I had scheduled an appointment with the psychiatry clinic, in which I was going to discuss how to get off my current meds. I logged on for the telehealth visit 45 minutes before it was supposed to start. At 45 minutes after my appointment time, with no word from the provider, I finally called them. They had me down as a “no show,” even though I was there the whole time.

I’ve had several telehealth appointments with other UTSW doctors and have never had a problem. But the person at the psych clinic said they just have that issue sometimes. Now my appointment is rescheduled for a month from now and I really don’t want to wait that long. So tomorrow I’m going to try to make an appointment with my family doctor.

I really only felt relief from my depression when I was taking 5mg Abilify plus my antidepressant. Taking 2mg Abilify every other day just to stave off the Obsessive Death Panic that I get when I try to quit it completely, plus my antidepressant, is doing absolutely nothing to help me.

The problem is that I know that it’s going to suck big-time to go off both. I thought maybe a psychiatrist would be better qualified to help than my family doctor who prescribed them. But my research shows that’s pretty unlikely anyway; most doctors don’t believe you can have discontinuation symptoms from weaning off of Abilify (and many don’t even believe that you can from antidepressants, even though it’s well-documented that you can, particularly with drugs in the SNRI class like the one I’ve been taking.)

So I think I’m most likely going to have to go it alone and I’m worried about it. I’ll do a really prolonged taper and hope that eventually I’ll be free and have my mind back. I also ordered some Sam-e supplements, which I remember used to work pretty well for me many years ago.

I can’t even say how trapped and broken I feel being physically dependent on these drugs. I’m not even 100 percent confident that I can stop taking them but dammit, I’m really going to try.

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