Tips on minimising withdrawal symptoms from Effexor (aka Venlafaxine)

Posted by richyrich @richyrich, Nov 2, 2016

I have been taking Effexor/Venlafaxine for years and tried to get off it a few times but each time I try to give up the chemical withdrawal symptoms are a horror story and I give up giving up. Anyone got any tips or tried and tested strategies? Thank you

Liked by Bek, LynneB, kelly76, echams1 ... see all

@saku

I was on 75 once a day and although that is not a high dosage, I have been on it well over 20 years. Over the course of a year I was able to wean myself off completely and have not taken any since Feb. 2019. I do have some days that I feel kind of blank and the other day I did not recognize someone I had spoken to only minutes before. This scares me but I am hoping it is still the effects of effexor

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Hello friend in weening! I got myself down to 37.5 for several years then took 18 months to ween off that and my last was February 1, 2019. Please keep sharing! Today was the worst day and I woke up crying! It’s a beautiful sunny day, nothing should be wrong, but actually, still reeling over my dads passing over a year ago and mom has dementia and looking at more appropriate living situation for her tomorrow! I hate my job but am so sagging happy to have one I feel like a schlub! Oh, please someone just tell me there’s a light at the end of this tunnel!

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@saku

I was on 75 once a day and although that is not a high dosage, I have been on it well over 20 years. Over the course of a year I was able to wean myself off completely and have not taken any since Feb. 2019. I do have some days that I feel kind of blank and the other day I did not recognize someone I had spoken to only minutes before. This scares me but I am hoping it is still the effects of effexor

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I, too, was on 75 for a good 15 years then went down to 37.5 and stayed. Today I am truly ready to throw in the towel – but, my daughter still makes me smile and brings me joy. (When I first went on meds, nothing gave me joy. So maybe there’s still hope!)

Of course, maybe Lexipro or Wellbutrin? Are they are horrendous to ween off of like Effexor?

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Good evening everyone. Today has been a bad day. I felt good for about 2 weeks and over the weekend everything went down hill. Back to odd thoughts, racing thoughts, confused,very moody and sad.

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I have ups and downs like you. So much has to do with family illnesses, my upcoming shoulder replacements, etc. My anxiety and depression don’t help. Thinking too much about these things doesn’t help. Taking walks and soaking up the sunshine and nature help so much!
We’re all here for each other!
May you find the peace you deserve!
Rascal

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I appreciate your post! And I agree.

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@farmboy

Good evening everyone. Today has been a bad day. I felt good for about 2 weeks and over the weekend everything went down hill. Back to odd thoughts, racing thoughts, confused,very moody and sad.

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@farmboy

Good Morning!

Sorry your day went so badly!
You are having longer periods of feeling well, maybe that is the way it will work????
You'll go downhill for a while (hopefully for shorter periods of time) and then go back up (hopefully for longer periods of time).
Remember when you had NO good periods?

Have a GOOD day!!!!
Ronnie (GRANDMAr)

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@secretwhitepop

Hello friend in weening! I got myself down to 37.5 for several years then took 18 months to ween off that and my last was February 1, 2019. Please keep sharing! Today was the worst day and I woke up crying! It’s a beautiful sunny day, nothing should be wrong, but actually, still reeling over my dads passing over a year ago and mom has dementia and looking at more appropriate living situation for her tomorrow! I hate my job but am so sagging happy to have one I feel like a schlub! Oh, please someone just tell me there’s a light at the end of this tunnel!

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@secretwhitepop

Good morning!
Wow! Congrates for getting yourself down so slowly. That is the way to do it!

I do ont know if it is the Effexor that is making you feel the way you do.
You are going through sooooooooooo much, perhaps THAT is what is cauing you to feel the way you do.
Anyone would feel so overwhelmed!
Give yourself a break and take things slowly.
You need time to morn your dad and morn the mother you once knew
Things will get better, but it will take time.

Have a peaceful day!
Ronnie (GRANDMAr)

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@grandmar

@secretwhitepop

Good morning!
Wow! Congrates for getting yourself down so slowly. That is the way to do it!

I do ont know if it is the Effexor that is making you feel the way you do.
You are going through sooooooooooo much, perhaps THAT is what is cauing you to feel the way you do.
Anyone would feel so overwhelmed!
Give yourself a break and take things slowly.
You need time to morn your dad and morn the mother you once knew
Things will get better, but it will take time.

Have a peaceful day!
Ronnie (GRANDMAr)

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I agree. My dads death was what got me on effexor! You are doing well and I suspect this is a reaction to the death of your dad and your moms dementia. Take care.

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@grandmar

@farmboy

Good Morning!

Sorry your day went so badly!
You are having longer periods of feeling well, maybe that is the way it will work????
You'll go downhill for a while (hopefully for shorter periods of time) and then go back up (hopefully for longer periods of time).
Remember when you had NO good periods?

Have a GOOD day!!!!
Ronnie (GRANDMAr)

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Wise words @grandmar

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@rascal1

I have ups and downs like you. So much has to do with family illnesses, my upcoming shoulder replacements, etc. My anxiety and depression don’t help. Thinking too much about these things doesn’t help. Taking walks and soaking up the sunshine and nature help so much!
We’re all here for each other!
May you find the peace you deserve!
Rascal

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@rascal1
By the way, your name ALWAYS makes me giggle. Why? Cuz I love how you state who you are in your name as I do. Oh, I look like a sweet old granny but I too LOVE being a rascel.
Ok, I missed this before, you are getting both your shoulders replaced??? Oh my gosh girl!!! You do have some health challenges going on.
I am posting this for a few reasons. 1. I want you to know I recognize your pain. I recognize your valor. I recognize your drive to go on, no matter what.
My hat is off to you. I honor you and the struggles you are going thru.
Ok, a little personal info…
My mom died suddenly of a stroke Dec 14, 2010.
My husband fell and started bleeding in 3 places in his head, Feb 11, 2011. He died in 8 hours.
A month later, my knee blew out. I had to have it replaced.
Months later, the bank let me know they were taking my house…..I said, Oh no you are not. I put it up for sale and sold it 5 days before the bank took it.
With the $3,000 profit, not counting the $45,000 loss, I jumped on a plane and took off for Africa.
I was so tired of whining and feeling sorry for myself, I chose to go work with those less fortunate than I was….
Best thing I ever did too.
I remember, giggling at the memory, the mission I was working at was given a sheep by one of the Elders of a tribe the mission was serving.
Ok, so I heard all kind of stories about how this guy had donated a sheep before but never came across with it…
I chose to take an action and went to get that sheep…I walked the whole way, walking faster than a young male nurse from a big city. I walked with ease, miles and miles…I came back without our sheep to boot. That elder is probably still donating a sheep and not coming across with it! Grin
.
Hahaha, so anyways, if I can do it, you can too girlfriend.
That knee replacement was the best thing I ever did.
Have a great day cuz I know I am…remember, attitude is everything.
Bright Wings

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@brightwings I had been on 75 mg for about 6 weeks before I attempted to wean down at all from there. But I started weaning from 225 mg in the beginning. I know that the weaning has to be extremely slow from here on out. I take out 6 beads from my 75 capsule which contains about 84 beads, So each bead is roughly .89 mg. So my calculation is that I am at 69 mg, not 66 yet. I guess that was like a 7% reduction? It just kills me that a few tiny beads can have SO much control over me. From reading information on a FB group I was astounded that people were having extreme reactions at the very end and jumping off of a single bead. Well, never say never, because it looks like that is what is in the future for me too! This whole experience has given me a great deal of compassion for drug addicts.
I did get my test results back from the CT scan. Apparently lesions on the liver are quite common, and their recommendation is to have an MRI in 3 months just to make sure nothing has changed. In the past I may have taken the news of the initial discovery in stride, but one of the effects of WD, for me, I think, is to catastrophize more than is normal.
I am 56 years old and had a total hysterectomy when I was 46, I stopped taking estrogen patches about 2 years ago. I realize now that the effexor was certainly helping stave off hot flashes since I am experiencing them a bit now, but nothing like the night sweats I had when I was going through neurontin withdrawal. Sometimes I have to remind myself that I got through that hell and I can get through this one. But the difference is, I went cold turkey with that. Even though my protracted WD lasted two years of windows and waves, I wasn't taking it anymore! With this, I'm still taking it and going through hell. SO the realization that I will have to go THIS slow and STILL experience years of hell is just discouraging.
I have my good days but right now I feel like I am in a dark hole and am losing patience the longer it goes on. Then I feel guilty that other people go through far worse than stupid effexor withdrawal…relative to many others out there, I should have gratitude, especially in light of this recent test, but I can't seem to snap out of it.
Ugh. Thanks for listening. I know it will get better but right now I am all kinds of crazy and full of self hate. And guilt. And self pity. Waiting for the tide to turn.
Hope everyone is having a good day!
Sandi

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@sandij

@brightwings I had been on 75 mg for about 6 weeks before I attempted to wean down at all from there. But I started weaning from 225 mg in the beginning. I know that the weaning has to be extremely slow from here on out. I take out 6 beads from my 75 capsule which contains about 84 beads, So each bead is roughly .89 mg. So my calculation is that I am at 69 mg, not 66 yet. I guess that was like a 7% reduction? It just kills me that a few tiny beads can have SO much control over me. From reading information on a FB group I was astounded that people were having extreme reactions at the very end and jumping off of a single bead. Well, never say never, because it looks like that is what is in the future for me too! This whole experience has given me a great deal of compassion for drug addicts.
I did get my test results back from the CT scan. Apparently lesions on the liver are quite common, and their recommendation is to have an MRI in 3 months just to make sure nothing has changed. In the past I may have taken the news of the initial discovery in stride, but one of the effects of WD, for me, I think, is to catastrophize more than is normal.
I am 56 years old and had a total hysterectomy when I was 46, I stopped taking estrogen patches about 2 years ago. I realize now that the effexor was certainly helping stave off hot flashes since I am experiencing them a bit now, but nothing like the night sweats I had when I was going through neurontin withdrawal. Sometimes I have to remind myself that I got through that hell and I can get through this one. But the difference is, I went cold turkey with that. Even though my protracted WD lasted two years of windows and waves, I wasn't taking it anymore! With this, I'm still taking it and going through hell. SO the realization that I will have to go THIS slow and STILL experience years of hell is just discouraging.
I have my good days but right now I feel like I am in a dark hole and am losing patience the longer it goes on. Then I feel guilty that other people go through far worse than stupid effexor withdrawal…relative to many others out there, I should have gratitude, especially in light of this recent test, but I can't seem to snap out of it.
Ugh. Thanks for listening. I know it will get better but right now I am all kinds of crazy and full of self hate. And guilt. And self pity. Waiting for the tide to turn.
Hope everyone is having a good day!
Sandi

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@sandij
I hear you loud and clear.
Well, good for you for being aware of all that and giving voice to your feelings. After reading it I was reminded of a tool I used to my benefit when feeling flooded like that.
I ALLOWED MYSELF to feel bad for a certain length of time. I CHOSE to allow myself to cry and whine and really wallow in my pain…
Why?
To Honor my feelings.
I validated my feelings because they were real.
.
When life comes flooding at us, certain chemical reactions happen in the body. They MAKE US feel bad.
By allowing myself to feel bad and cry over things that were out of control, I was basically taking back control of my life…..
AND I needed a time limit because I could wallow in my sad, tragic childhood, or my many illnesses, or my body breaking down because of the extreme pain buried in my body as a child up to young adulthood.
By crying, I was releasing toxins that I couldn't get rid of any other way.
Smiling at you darling, try it, it works. Bright Wings

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@sandij

@brightwings I had been on 75 mg for about 6 weeks before I attempted to wean down at all from there. But I started weaning from 225 mg in the beginning. I know that the weaning has to be extremely slow from here on out. I take out 6 beads from my 75 capsule which contains about 84 beads, So each bead is roughly .89 mg. So my calculation is that I am at 69 mg, not 66 yet. I guess that was like a 7% reduction? It just kills me that a few tiny beads can have SO much control over me. From reading information on a FB group I was astounded that people were having extreme reactions at the very end and jumping off of a single bead. Well, never say never, because it looks like that is what is in the future for me too! This whole experience has given me a great deal of compassion for drug addicts.
I did get my test results back from the CT scan. Apparently lesions on the liver are quite common, and their recommendation is to have an MRI in 3 months just to make sure nothing has changed. In the past I may have taken the news of the initial discovery in stride, but one of the effects of WD, for me, I think, is to catastrophize more than is normal.
I am 56 years old and had a total hysterectomy when I was 46, I stopped taking estrogen patches about 2 years ago. I realize now that the effexor was certainly helping stave off hot flashes since I am experiencing them a bit now, but nothing like the night sweats I had when I was going through neurontin withdrawal. Sometimes I have to remind myself that I got through that hell and I can get through this one. But the difference is, I went cold turkey with that. Even though my protracted WD lasted two years of windows and waves, I wasn't taking it anymore! With this, I'm still taking it and going through hell. SO the realization that I will have to go THIS slow and STILL experience years of hell is just discouraging.
I have my good days but right now I feel like I am in a dark hole and am losing patience the longer it goes on. Then I feel guilty that other people go through far worse than stupid effexor withdrawal…relative to many others out there, I should have gratitude, especially in light of this recent test, but I can't seem to snap out of it.
Ugh. Thanks for listening. I know it will get better but right now I am all kinds of crazy and full of self hate. And guilt. And self pity. Waiting for the tide to turn.
Hope everyone is having a good day!
Sandi

Jump to this post

@sandij
I just remembered 2 things that help me when I am feeling my worse.
1. Go run warm water over your hands. Oh, the comfort it brings is unbelievalbe. I know once I was there for 5 minutes. And it always helps me get back to the here and now…not in the past or future. It allowed me to stop dwelling on things and get my mind body and spirit back to right now. This second. I take back my control of MY LIFE that way…
.
Giggling, I forgot the second one. Those darn missing brain cells. If anybody sees them, kick them in the rear and send them home. I could get upset for not remembering BUT:
I have a policy…"I don't get my undies in a bunch"…
It steals my precious energy if I do.
So I am off to the senior center…my adoring fans are waiting. Oh, they love my singing as much as I love to sing.
I am singing the song: TODAY
Flying happily, Bright Wings

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Such a fabulous attitude ! I need to stop looking back and march ahead!

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