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Hello everyone.  This is my first time at BenzoBuddies.  I'm so excited to be here and looking forward to meet everyone. My reasons to be here is to share my experience in the hope that I can help anyone and also seeking support for my benzo withdrawal.

 

Today marks the period that I'm off Xanax and Paxil for 2.5 months.

 

A little story about me regarding the Xanax and Paxil.

 

I remember in Seventh grade, I had intrusive thoughts in my mind that I had to do the compulsions to alleviate them. But I didn't pay much attention, I thought that was normal. When I was in high school, I remember rarely eating lunch with my friends. I would sit by the locker room and eat lunch either with only one friend or by myself. But as I got older I became more out going a little bit.

 

In High School, my parents were strict of me because I'm a girl. I had to get home before 10:00 and I had to tell who I went with. On top of that my parents always had argument with each other.  Therefore, it wasn't ideal living like that.  I was depressed and frustrated about my parents.  Also, as a girl growing , a lot of changes within me and I had no sister, my mom was not too much of help.  Therefore, I started to have low confidence, lack of self esteem and self worth, etc. However, there were times I enjoyed life also. It was of a up and down. Also, I wanted to mention, I was always a worrier, worry that I had every illness in the world when I feel some ache in my body.  I had been to doctors and emergencies room quite often.

 

Then ONE DAY, I can remember in the hospital after having a CT Scan of my Abdominal.  It came normal.  I had this strong waves or surges of sensation going through my body.  It was so strong and scary, I thought I was going to die. I breath heavily. My hands were sweating and shaken. I keep crying to the nurse and explained to her but she didn't understand. No body did. However, in time I was calm and they discharged me to go home. I thought that was just a one time and I'm OK. However few days later, the feeling came back. I called 911 and was taken to the hospital they said I have anxiety. Medication were described and I was told to see my family doctor.

 

I went to see my family doctor and was asked to see a psychiatrist. They psychiatrist didn't talk much and just gave me the prescription.  I didn't want to take them so I just got on with my life wishing I would be OK. Things got worse, I was having more attacks and taken to the hospital one more time. When I came home I went to see the family doctor, she had help me to understand a little bit about panic attacks. Still, it was too scary when it happened and her words meant nothing. I started taking Paxil CR 25MG. I complained I couldn't sleep much. Xanax was prescribed and I felt better instantly. Relax and happy. I still questioned the medications if they are addictive or not. The doctors just said "but you need them" and reassured me a lot of people are on them and very common and told me not to feel bad. She was a nice doctor. The medications helped me through college and got me a job. But when I started working in 2010. Depression was bad. I was changed to a few different medications but nothing worked. So I was back to Paxil and Xanax. The panic attacks still coming so much. Everyday that I had to take Xanax 0.5MG 3 times per day (maximum 1.5mg). Whenever I came to see my doctor I always asked me if the medications were addictive and can I got off and can I have kids? He said u will be fine. I believed him. To be honest, all the doctors that I have seen were very nice and supportive and had helped me a lot but the only thing was that they don't know much about anxiety. all they did was prescribed medications (well they are doctors right?) .

 

The turning point was, I was searching online and stumbled on a website "No more anxiety" by Paul David. At first it was nice to read and feel relived but I didn't pay any mind. Until few months ago, I decided to purchase a book "At Last A Life" by Paul David. This was when I understood so much about anxiety and decided to get off Xanax.

 

I tapered the Xanax very slow. It took me about a year to taper the Xanax. I'm now 2.5 months of off the Xanax and Paxil.  I was on Paxil and Xanax for 10 years.  The last couple and half months were not easy. There were days that seemed easier. I don't know how I'm still able working full time and starting going part time school last week. I cried when driving from work to home often.

 

Two and a half months is very soon to mention any recovery. However, I feel that I'm 20% better.  Below are the symptoms I still struggle :

 

1) Feelings of Depersonalizations. This is a very annoying sensation. Even though I'm not scared of it like before. I have this everyday. I learned to not pay it much respect but it's hard sometimes.

 

2) Panic attacks. I have this 2-3 times per week. Strong panic attacks. I'm not afraid of them any more as I used to.

3)Headaches. Head pressures. This gets better when I'm less stressed.

4) Intrusive thoughts. This is one of my hardest symptoms. I have tons and tons of worry thoughts. Worry thoughts about past and futures.

Other symptoms: Tired body, tired mind, dizziness, unbalance, sweat hands...

 

I just want to share with everyone how far I have gone. However, I'm still struggle some days. But I have strong faith and I know I can come through this. all I need is time and patience. Some days I need a lot of support that's why I'm here.

 

Thank you for reading my story and I apologize it's lengthy.

 

Tracy

 

 

 

 

 

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Hi TracyNGLE :hug: Welcome to Benzobuddies

 

Thank you for sharing your story with us, you did very well tapering off these meds. I am sorry you’re experiencing withdrawal symptoms.  These symptoms are temporary but It does take quite some time for the CNS to recover, it will get better eventually. 

 

Congratulations on being benzo free, you will find some comfort communicating with those who are in the same situation as you are.  Our members have been through all aspects of benzodiazepine use and withdrawal, and will share their experiences with you.

 

Feel free to check out the forum and post to any of our dedicated threads. We have many supportive and kind members here who will give support and sound advice. 

 

I don't know if you have read the Ashton Manual. It is an excellent resource about these types of medication and their effect on the body.

 

Here is a link to the manual: Professor Ashtons Manual

 

Here is a link to Post Withdrawal: 

 

Post withdrawal recovery support.

 

When you are ready please write a signature line, it will  allow others to see where you are in the process so they can better support you.

”Create a signature”

 

Welcome aboard

 

Magrita

 

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Welcome to BB,

Sounds like u have been thru a lot. Congratulations on getting off drugs. U should start feeling better soon, since u are through the first 2 mos..

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Congratulations getting off the xanax- that is quite an accomplishment!! I know first hand since I went off the same dose of xanax in May as you were taking....it was a struggle to say the least- but so worth it. You will find benzo buddies a great source of comfort and encouragement as you continue healing.
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Thank you so much for the reply and support!

 

Today, first couple of hours at work, I experience strong feelings of depersonalisation. It last for 2-3 hrs then 'almost normal' feelings come for few hrs and then the DP came back. I experienced this everyday. The symptoms that I experienced : feeling strange, cannot connect to people, feel like the people just passing and they don't see me.....I'm not afraid of these feelings anymore but they are annoying...and got me worry if I ever get through this feelings...Also, I Feel my mind is not clear, and I feel my memory is getting worse? I don't know if its the withdrawal or I have a bad memory...my memory was OK before but after the drugs and on the withdrawal now...my mind seems not clear and seems to forget and don't remember as much...is this symptom of withdrawal? Please let me know..Also how to deal with intrusive thoughts...many thanks :)

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Hi Tracy

 

You have gotten through a lot in your life, and you will come through this too. I had memory problems, i also had scary episodes of dp/dr.  I promise you, this will eventually go, try not to give it any importance!    Intrusive memories are fairly common withdrawal symptoms.  Distract!  Listen to music, go for a walk, try anything to take your mind away from symptoms, keep distracting until it becomes automatic. Withdrawal symptoms will fade with time. 

 

Hang in there, it gets better with time.

Magrita :smitten:

 

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Hi Everyone,

 

I just had one very bad panic attack. It was so intense and long..that I almost felt like calling 911...It was the most terrible feelings I had every felt in my entire life...This is the second time I had it since my withdrawal...luckily my fiance was there with me...he calmed me down,  he stayed calm in his attitude and knew it was just a panic attack...what scared me was that it felt so strong I was thinking it was something else...medically wrong with my body...b/c I didn't eat breakfat until 1PM...I was thinking if I was about to faint....now I knew that it was just panic attacks but...I dunno why everything it that strong, it got me worry again ...I was frustrated, felt down...sad...angry...why it happening to me...of course it always pass...but this lasted 30 minutes...but only about 10 minutes strong...still....I tried to do breathing...but my mind was too scared...it kept focusing on the negative thoughts...my fiance said u did 2.5 months already u need ot be patience and keep going...I know I will keep going but when that happend it just hard...

 

:(

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Hey there!

  I'm sorry you are going through this, but just like magrita's personal text says, "the only way out is through". I very much related to your story, as my early years were quite similar to yours. Oh and by the way, my body tries to faint on me almost every single day...usually when I get up out of bed in the AM. I have to monitor my blood pressure at least twice a day. It's no fun.

 

Just thought I'd share a little, since I am coming off of a lot of Xanax...yesterday I was  having a convo with my stepdad which was hard for me because he has never liked me very much due to my bouts with benzos. It's not his fault, he just doesn't understand the reality of them, just like so many others...including the medical community. So I was so nervous and shaky talking to him face to face for the first time in months. I worked up the courage to try to explain BWS and why I was still feeling bad(he is quite intimidating and yells a lot). I'm also experiencing dysarthria, which is difficulty articulating...but anyways, after we talked a little, for the first time EVER, he was actually kind and supportive. He even said, "just get well, I have faith in you"! I was in shock and began to cry. I don't even remember the last time I cried. Didn't even cry in detox.

Shortly after, I was sitting on my bed with my husband just chatting...nothing major. Out of the clear blue came one of the worst panic attacks...I mean bad...shaking, bawling, continuous and unrelenting thoughts of doom overtook my mind. I couldn't control my thoughts at all, normally I can manage to stop the momentum at the onset, but no way no how this time. My mind was spinning with all sorts of horrific images and thoughts. My husband tried everything to talk me out of it. He is the only one who usually can. It was so surreal, almost like I wasn't really there...my vision became more blurred than usual and I could barely even make out his face and voice. I kept saying things that sounded nothing like my own thoughts, it was if the end of the world was coming. I started recanting old memories that I felt guilt or shame about...and all of a sudden then I was in a shame spiral that I could not seem to stop. I said things to him I had never said before, because I never had thoughts this bleak. I even had to remind myself to breathe...I kept holding my breath unintentionally because I was feeling such terror.

My take is that when we come off of benzos, our emotions are very raw...we can compare it to a wound that has just had the bandage ripped off, or a snail with no shell. I know with time it will get better. With the smaller panic attacks, it helps me to remind myself that it's not ME, it's the drug and it WILL pass. With the major ones like yesterday, I know I need to always have someone to talk me through it. Thank God for good friends and family willing to support us.

 

Take good care of yourself. All the best.

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