Don’t try this at home

Thursday March 24, 2022

Goldie but Oldie’s post ‘Skills not Pills’ really resonated with me. I have stopped taking my anti-depressant medication for about 6 weeks now.

This was not the massive decision it might seem. I have been on the lowest dose for some time now and even the psychiatrist had suggested trying to come off but I have never quite had the courage to do so.

This time I tapered them down and told a friend who checked on me weekly to see how I was doing. I do have a back up plan: I have a repeat prescription ready in my drawer should I need them and my friend is on standby should I begin to feel ill and need to talk.

So what have I noticed so far? Well I had a couple of days of real flu-like aches, real physical withdrawal symptoms. I would say that the blunt edges of emotions, maybe a little smoothed down by medication, are now more obvious. 

I had a medication review with a nurse last week. While I got roundly and rightly chastised for not consulting the doctor before I took action, I was rather surprised by the warmth with which I was congratulated on my decision! 

I am by no means recommending this as a course of action for others. I have been on medication for twenty years and some of the factors that led to my depression such as an unhappy marriage are now resolved. But I do also think I have learnt skills as Goldie alluded to which have meant that I am more able to improve my wellbeing.

If you too take the decision to come off medication, please be more sensible than me and consult your GP first. And have a back up plan…

I would be interested to hear of other people’s attempts and there is no judgement either way. After all, dear Moodscopers, we are amongst friends, aren’t we?

A Moodscope member.

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