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Wed, Apr 10 8:27am · Tips on minimising withdrawal symptoms from Effexor (aka Venlafaxine) in Depression & Anxiety

Weaning off of this drug really messed with my gastro system. Diarrhea and horrible cramps. I wonder if it may be your gastro system and not your reproductive system. Might be worth a trip to the gyno to be double sure.

Fri, Apr 5 8:20am · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief

I have tried everything. I did connect with an excellent grief counselor from church but she got a boyfriend and moved away. I was devastated. I recently joined a Compassionate Friends group but most of the members are couples; moms and dads who have each other to lean on. Being divorced, I don't have that. I always feel like the "fifth wheel" in these situations. I see them holding hands, husbands comforting their wives with their arm around them and there I sit….alone. There are times when I would pay for a hug….literally. Even those of us who grieve the loss of a child don't really know what to do for someone like me. I need a real connection but in seven years, haven't found that. No support from my family. My daughter lives an hour away and she rarely even mentions her brother. I know she is grieving but in a different way. My sister told me one time that I was making losing my son "all about me". WTH? I am his mother. I still recognize his birthday (which no one else ever does), I still think about him every single day. I think about the love that he missed out on by not marrying, having children, grand children…..all of the things we assume will happen in our lives, don't. My daughter doesn't have any children, nor is able to have any. I'm never going to be a grandma, which is excruciating. I have tried volunteering in the schools but they keep putting me in the office to help the secretaries when I really want to work with the kids….It's not for lack of trying and putting myself out there. I have done everything and anything I can think of to find some kind of purpose in this world. But I haven't been able to do that. I am desperately searching, praying, and hoping for a real miracle….I don't know how much longer I can do this.

Thu, Apr 4 6:57am · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief

That was what was so hard….he had endured the worst of the worst while at war but couldn't fight the demons once he got home. Yes, multiple deployments are very common in our military these days. He would get back to the states for 3 or 4 months (getting acclimated to being home) and then off he went to the other side of the world. He said when he got back no one really knows anything about war until you experience it..The only thing that gets me through the day is knowing he is in the arms of our Lord Jesus Christ and is finally at peace….I pray every day that I can join him soon.

Thu, Apr 4 6:54am · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief

That's exactly what I need…..hugs, hugs and more hugs. Thank you for your kind and caring words. I am so sorry about what your family has been through. It seems as though some come through life "unscathed" and others get everything horrible tossed at them…..

Wed, Apr 3 6:01pm · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief

Thank you all for your kind and caring comments. We never, ever know what folks go through in life. When I was married and the kids were in school, I thought I had the perfect life. I loved my husband and my kids were my world. We did so many fun things as a family. My ex had a heart attack at 46 and I think after that he completely changed. Maybe the fear of dying young was in the back of his mind and he wanted to get out and see what else there was in life, I don't know. But I do know it killed me….going through a horrendous divorce while our son was on his third deployment sent me over the edge. I had to be hospitalized and he told he was glad he got "rid of me" when he did. I loved being a wife and a mother and did every thing in my power to be good at it. Worked full time, kept a clean and tidy home, ran the kids all over kingdom come while their dad worked shift work, kept myself up, but I have never felt like I was "enough" for anyone. My son left a note that he was ashamed of the man he had become…..he wasn't what he was raised to be. He saw more in his early 20's than most men see in a life time but he just couldn't figure out how to get out from under the demons….I'm wondering if I ever will. God bless all who struggle. This world is an evil place and evil lurks where you least expect it…

Tue, Apr 2 12:51pm · Loss and Grief: How are you doing? in Loss & Grief

This was a great video for anyone who is trying to "figure out" why they aren't "normal". My mom had me when she was barely 14. She and my dad married and have been married for 61 years. They both came from traumatic childhoods but I never recognized that until I became an adult. My parents went on to have 3 more children after me, giving them 4 kids by the time my mom was 20. That was back in the 50's. I guess it wasn't totally out of the norm to have kids at a young age. I didn't know any better until I started kindergarten and I would hear other kids asking me if my mom was my mom or my older sister. I also heard comments from room mothers about how young my mom must have been when she had me. I guess I felt like I was well-adjusted and didn't know the difference. As time went on, I grew into quite a chubby little girl. I can remember my mom jerking me around in dressing rooms when it came time to buy school clothes, or special occasion dresses; i.e. Christmas, Easter, etc. I can remember how I felt. She was angry at me for something I couldn't control. She was feeding me what I was eating. But looking back, I think I developed an eating disorder from all the comments and subconscious "things" I was trying to figure out in my mind. And I was embarrassed….of myself and my situation at home. At no time we were ever physically or sexually abused. Never. But my mom wasn't mature enough mentally or physically to take care of 4 kids at such an early age. She was a stay at home mom, cooked and cleaned. There was always a hot meal on the table. We were active in sports. I was a straight A student. But I always felt like there was something wrong with me….When I was 16 I became pregnant with twins. My mom never gave my sister nor I "the talk" and to tell you the truth, I really had no idea about sex or pregnancy. I think I was searching for some kind of love and attention and started dating the brother of my best friend. When my parents figured out that I was pregnant, they were mortified. I remember being called a slut, whore, "loose", and I as whisked away to get an abortion. I only found out when I was on the table in the middle of the procedure that I was carrying twins. I begged the doctors to stop. I wanted to talk to my parents and tell them that I could not go through with it. It didn't happen. I was traumatized beyond words. It happened that day and it was never, ever mentioned again. Ever. I graduated from hs with honors and always dreamed of being a teacher. I was told there was no $$ for college so I'd better figure out what I wanted to do with the rest of my life because after I graduated, I was on my own. My senior year, I quit cheer leading, dropped out of academic classes and took business classes to learn to type, do office work, etc. I started working the day after I graduated. My parents did let me stay at home the next year because I was working and able to "pull my own weight" and went on to marry my high school sweet heart. As most little girls always dream, I wanted a church wedding and my boyfriend and I saved every dime we could to pay for it. My mom never went dress shopping with me or had any interested in the planning of the wedding. It was in the earl 70's and nothing fancy but there were plans that needed to be taken care of. My grandmother did everything with me. As life went on and there were other big events in my life, my mom was never there for me. When I would get a better job, she would ask me who I screwed to get it, etc. My husband and I bought and sold little homes to get the down payment on a permanent family home as we had two children of our own by them. My mom berated me telling me that I thought I was better than everyone else in the family because we had a new home. I had almost every family function, holiday, etc. in that house because I loved having my family and I WANTED to do it….I wasn't shoving what I had accomplished down anyone's throat. They were glad to come and partake of the parties, that's for sure. My daughter had a stroke when she was 12 years old. She wasn't expected to live. She is now 38 and is doing fine. She still has some residual affects from the stroke but is gainfully employed, drives and is doing better than anyone ever expected her to be. My mom was little support during this time. My grandmother stepped up. I don't know what I would have done without her. When my son graduated from high school (shortly after 9/11) he decided to enlist in the Marine Corps. I begged him not to. He was in his second year of college and wanted to be a teacher and football coach (his passion). He left for boot camp on 1/13/2002 and was in Iraq by September of that year. My life came crashing down around me. It was the worst of the worst. My son was in the middle of the war at 19 years old and there wasn't a damn thing i could do about it other than pray, pray, pray. When he returned home from that first deployment, we were all elated…..God had brought him back to us and he was ok. Three months later his unit redeployed and this time it was holy hell. He was stationed near Fallujah and if any of you know anything about the was in Iraq, Fallujah was the hot spot. He had a very difficult time on that deployment, having lost three of his buddies literally right before his eyes. I had started a new job and was under so much stress. My husband was no support at all. No one in my family was either. When my son returned home, he was a mess. PTSD and a TBI debilitated him. But, he was a Marine and three months later was headed back to Iraq for a third tour. I went over the edge. Depression and that out of control feeling over came me. My husband grew more distant. I came home from work one day and found him loading up his truck. He told me he met someone at work and he had filed for divorce. I was devastated. Our daughter still lived at home and she was beside herself that her dad would leave the family when there was so much going on. We divorced, had to sell that dream home everyone begrudged us about and for the first time in my 56 years I was alone. When my son was finally discharged, he was a mess. PTSD, TBI and he had become an alcoholic. His dad was no where to be found. I begged my ex, my family and the VA for help but there was none. On the morning of 1/3/12, my 29 year old son took his life. There are no words to explain the heart ache and shock of losing a child, much less to suicide. That was 7 years ago. My family has totally abandoned me because I can't "move on". They live 10 minutes away and I rarely see or hear from them. I have been in every kind of support group, been on medications, been to grief retreats but I just can't get out of this deep, dark hole. I really want to leave this earth but can't do that to my daughter. She has already lost her brother and her dad isn't in her life. I know this is a lot….and it is….but I just can't figure out how to keep on living….

Jul 20, 2018 · Tips on minimising withdrawal symptoms from Effexor (aka Venlafaxine) in Depression & Anxiety

The easiest (and it's NOT THAT EASY) to get off of Effexor is to do it over TIME….and a LOT OF IT. If I had to do over again, I would take at least 6-9 MONTHS to totally withdraw from this drug. As I wrote above, the gastric issues I had in the three months my doctor reduced my dosage damn near killed me. In my opinion, this drug as well as Cymbalta, should be banned from anything living to consume.

Jul 20, 2018 · Tips on minimising withdrawal symptoms from Effexor (aka Venlafaxine) in Depression & Anxiety

Just an fyi to those of you who are struggling….I started my withdrawal in October 2017. BAD time of year for me as I lost my son to PTSD on 1/3/12 and the holidays are a KILLER. I took Effexor for almost ten years (started after divorce after 31 years of marriage and my son was on his third deployment to Iraq). This medication was slowly killing me: kidney problems, 75 lb weight gain in 4 years, high pb, trigliceryds, (sp?), insomnia, and I generally slept 16 to 18 hours a day. I had to retire from a job that I DEARLY loved. The light bulb finally came on to me that I had to do something to get a hold of my life and start living again. In the past 10 months, I have lost 50 lbs, am Effexor free, but NOT without horrendous withdrawal effects. I was being seen by a gastro doctor for extreme conditions. Couldn't keep anything down and what did stay down was immediately passed creating a problem so horrible that I literally didn't leave my home for months. I resorted to adult diapers at the age of 58. I was devastated. After spending thousands of dollars and still no answers, I did a ton of research on the withdrawal effects of Effexor. There I found my answers. I am still losing weight as I am finding new and more active things to do with my life. I bought a bicycle! I ride 8 to 10 miles a day. It really helps curb the anxiety, which I still find a problem. I'm working with a therapist on how to learn to deal with the loss of my son….he was only 29 when he left this world and I will grieve for him until I die….I know that. My advice for anyone is 1) REFUSE to ingest this drug in any dosage, shape or form. Cymbalta is in the same classification, so I would steer clear of that as well. Besides, one of its worst side effects is chronic diarrhea. My "medication provider" as she called herself (I always thought a psychiatrist had to dispense these meds but that's what she called herself) refused to prescribe anything for anxiety as long as I wasn't taking an antidepressant. My pcp stepped up and LISTENED TO ME and is closely monitoring this medication. I have SWORN to never take any antidepressant drugs ever again. The withdrawal put me in the hospital twice with severe dehydration, hallucinations and I really thought I was going to die. There were days when I prayed I would to stop the hell. My advice is to take is SLOW. And I mean REALLY slow. If it takes you 6 or 9 months or longer to totally withdraw, then so be it. Your body will thank you for it. And so will your mind. In my opinion, it is only by the Grace of God that I am sitting here writing this…..these medications (poisons) are nothing to fool with.