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Jun 12, 2018 · benzo withdrawal in Depression & Anxiety


I've been taking Klonopin for 12 years, at 1mg at bedtime, with a second one as needed. I almost never take a second one. I tried to taper off it a couple of years ago, but I couldn't sleep just reducing it to .75mg. I finally gave up and went back up.

What was your dosage? Have you tried other sleep aids that are less addictive? I hope your doctor will be able to work with you on this.


May 23, 2018 · Gallbladder surgery in Digestive Health


My gallbladder was removed because it had only 14% function. I did have to be careful about what I ate for awhile, but now, 15 years later, I eat a normal, healthy diet. Sometimes at bedtime I take some Tums to settle my stomach. Sometimes I just take a couple because my mouth is dry.

I've read that people do sometimes have difficulty in recovery. I hope that your symptoms will improve soon. I agree that talking with doctors might be helpful.


May 8, 2018 · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief


Memory and concentration.

May 3, 2018 · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief


I pastored a church in a town of 247. Shopping and doctors were 3 hours away. The local Methodist Church service was earlier than ours, and we attended there just to be able to sit in a pew. When we moved away, we went to the local church for 8 years, but I couldn't stay any longer because of the pastor's negativity. It was dragging me down, and I told the pastor how much it was affecting me, especially because of my depression. We go to a good church now that's 30 miles away. There are probably several other good churches locally, but I preferred to stick with the denomination I'm ordained with.

Change is hard. And having problems within the church is even harder. Be patient and don't make any quick decisions that you might regret later.


May 3, 2018 · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief

Teresa, I tried Gabapentin a few years ago and again a couple of months ago. I didn't like the cognitive side effects.


May 2, 2018 · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief

@hopeful33250 @muppey

I just had a snack of two graham crackers with chocolate cream cheese on them. My wife has a few friends who get together on Wednesday evenings and knit, so I'm on my own for what to eat. I usually have yogurt and toast and a piece of fruit.

If I lose another 5-10 pounds, I'll be at my comfortable weight, which is the same as what I weighed in college. I'm 6' 2", and 155-160 is where I like to be.

I was on several meds that absolutely should never be stopped suddenly. I was too dizzy to walk, and I had to lie perfectly still. Just moving my eyes would make me dizzy. I was trying to take notes of everything that was happening, but I could only scrawl a sentence or two at a time. It was a nightmare I hope never to repeat.

One thing I started doing at their recommendation is to rate each day on a scale of 1-10, 10 being the best day of my life. 4 is the level of active suicidality. I was a 2 in the hospital. It took at least two years to reach 5, and another 3-4 years to reach 6. At the end of last year I was back down to 5, and it's taken a year to get back up to 6. I seem to be pretty much settled in at 6.

I was diagnosed depressive bipolar, which means that my base line is lower than normal, and the highs of bipolar are still lower than what a non-depressed person would be on their normal day. I've told the therapist that I'm just really tired of depression, but I'm thinking that 6 will just be my new 9. I'm able to function, though not at the level I could before I spiraled downward into the darkness of clinical, severe depression. I do as much as I can make myself do.

Our driveway is a quarter mile long, and over the winter months it develops potholes. We are infested with ground squirrels, and they have made big holes in the bank next to the driveway, with dirt cascading down onto the driveway, creating humps. I spent some time several days filling the holes and trying to level it out. There was a section that was graded wrong, so water wouldn't drain off. I shoveled and raked a bunch of dirt to correct it. It's not perfect, but it's about as good as I can make it using a shovel and rake. I'd like to have 5 yards of gravel brought in. I think that would help maintain the driveway.

I've once again rambled down some of those squirrel holes. Sorry. I'm not doing much online these days because it's beyond my functioning level right now. One of these days maybe I'll get myself together enough to be more involved with the groups.


May 1, 2018 · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief


The facility where I spent 6 weeks was owned and operated by a hospital. It was locked, but I admitted myself, so I could have left anytime. There were several group therapy sessions every day, attendance required. I found the groups marginally helpful.

I asked the facility to keep my profession confidential because I knew that people would want to tell me their problems. I made it for 4 or 5 weeks, then in one group session the facilitator pressed me to tell what my 24/7 job was. It was really frustrating, and exactly what I hoped to avoid did happen. I was there because I needed help. I didn't want to be a pastor to the other patients.

I would have preferred to have more down time. I just wanted to stay in my room, alone. The main reason I was there was to be in a safe place, to get a break from suicidal possibilities. I think I was more severely depressed than most.

The typical stay is a week or so, but I knew that I wasn't safe to leave. After awhile the group session curriculum cycled, and I was just hearing the same thing that wasn't very useful the first time around. It did get boring.

I went back 3 months later and the staff was very rude and did and said things that were totally inappropriate. One thing they did was just stop all of my meds. When I got home, I wrote a strongly worded letter to the hospital and the safe home, and I guess I ruffled some feathers and changes were made. I was really angry with the staff. On the third day, I met with the whole staff and made it pretty clear that I had several grievances, and what exactly they were. I was disgusted with the way they treated me. I walked out that day.

My psychiatrist told me that my letter had quite an effect, and that significant changes were made. I hope that if I ever need to go back, I'd be treated with more respect. I might find a different place, though.

I agree that regular hospitals are pretty boring.

I'm trying to lose weight. I lost 60 pounds a couple of years ago, but I've put 15 back on. Yard work is helping. So far I've lost five. My weakness is chocolate and most other sweets. I'm restricting myself to one piece of candy per day, and taking smaller portions at meals.


May 1, 2018 · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief


Too often people say that things are God's will that are far from His will. I don't think that the sudden death of a child or the horrific genocide happening against Christians in Nigeria are God's will. I will concede that He can turn around a painful event to be a growing or learning experience for us. Certainly, we know that He's aware of all that happens, and allows things to happen, but He doesn't will things like the death of your son. I don't know how you feel about suicide as a sin. I've heard too many people say categorically that anyone who commits suicide is going to hell. I don't agree with that statement. I know that some will, if they didn't know Jesus, but I don't believe that suicide is an unforgivable sin that prevents a person from going to heaven.

I've made a number of suicide attempts myself, and I know that I wasn't thinking rationally at those times. I just wanted to end the pain. To a person at that place, suicide IS a rational decision, and often no amount of criticizing or judging or persuading can prevent an attempt by a determined person. For someone to say things to me like "Suicide is a selfish act." or "Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem", only irritated me. They certainly didn't have an effect on my wanting to die. When I was swallowing a handful of pills, calling a suicide hotline was the last thing I'd do because they'd only try to stop me. DUH!

Anyway, I agree with you that not everything that happens in this world is God's will.

Gotta go help my wife get supper on the table.