Thursday, February 9, 2012

Reducing Antidepressants, First reduction, days 7-9

Grumpy Bear vs. Grumpy (261/365)So, here's what I'm figuring out.  It can be hard to tell if the withdrawal symptom you're experiencing is an actual symptom of the withdrawal from the medication or just a regular part of life.  Mood swings are a normal thing for me at certain times of the month in particular.  How am I supposed to know if I'm angry because I have PMS or because the dose of my medication has changed?  I guess the obvious thing is to check the calendar, right?   But what about those times when I'm just irritated because someone is annoying?  I mean, come on, you can't blame everything on the meds.  Sometimes, irritability just happens.
Mood swing
A Mood Swing!  I need one of these!

I was reading down the list of possible symptoms today as I was looking to mark "Irritability" on my chart.  I wasn't too surprised to see suicidal thoughts on the list, but then I saw homicidal thoughts and urges right below that.  Well, what do you know?  I guess that means that I need to be more aware of when people annoy me so that I don't get those urges or try to act on them.

The other day, while I was working, I had a really bad mood come on.  Since I work from home and my husband is self employed, we spend a lot of time in close quarters.  I felt it was only fair to warn him that I was having a mood, so I sent him  a text.  He wrote back something that made me laugh, and I let him know that the mood swing had passed, but the next one was scheduled for 20 minutes from now.  He commented that it was a good thing I could laugh about it.  My next remark?  That I could laugh now, but in 20 minutes, I wouldn't be laughing.

I think it's true though, you do need to be able to laugh about things like mood swings and other withdrawal symptoms as they happen.  Laughter goes a long way toward keeping you from getting to serious about things. You know what, being in a bad mood is not the worst thing that can happen to me in the grand scheme of things.  So what if my mood comes and goes?  Being able to laugh about it makes it easier to bear.  Laughing with someone else makes the laughter even sweeter.

My husband has been my partner in this from the start.  He was the one who encouraged me to look into getting off the medication.  I think he was able to have a clearer picture of how the drug was affecting me.  Being on the medication, sometimes it's hard to see how it has been negatively affecting me.  I saw the negative effects, but didn't necessarily attribute them to the long term use of the medication.

Overall, it's been an OK week.  It hasn't all been sunshine and roses, but I really believe that getting off these drugs will make a huge difference.  It's not easy, but it hasn't been torturous either.  One more week at this level according to the plan my doctor set out.  We shall see how it goes.

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