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I'm wondering if it's really worth it


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Hello friends

 

In the past three months my sister died, followed by shingles, and this week I had to put my 13 year old dog down.  He was my one of my few comforts during this journey...never once told me to go back on the drug nor did I get one eye roll as I suffered dibilitating symptoms.  I thougt I was going to die that night at the vets office.  Every symptom and more.  Now the husband and I both have the flu...fever, coughing unbearable body ache etc.  Of course I have no idea what is w/d and what is the flu.  I am paralyzed and so lonely.  I am 65 years old and honestly do not know how much longer I can suffer through this.  I have been faithful to my schedule, never updosed although when I had shingles I hung on to the same dosage for a month.  I am not even off yet...down to .75 mgs valium.  The thought of what is going to happen to me when I jump off is my worst enemy.  Will it be worth it for me?  How much more can my battered body take?  I know reinstating is not always successful...this is the first time ever I have even thought about it but the fear of what is next is all consuming.  Right now I feel like I will die if I continue the course, and die if I don't and just go back on the stupid drug.  Help me please...I now feel hopeless and spend hours imagining what new kind of Hell I will step in to...

 

Donna

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Hello Donna,

 

I'm very sorry to hear about  all the terrible things that have happened to you.  For what it's worth, please don't reinstate.  Keep on with your tapering, even if it means staying for awhile longer on your present dose.  I am a little older than you and realize how difficult it can be.  Of course it is up to you, and these are just my thoughts.

 

Kat

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Thank you, Kat.  I just need to hear 'don't do it' right now.  I think what pushed me over the edge was a phone call I got from a friend who actually wanted to understand what I was going through so she bought a book on Benzo's.  She said 'You know, this doctor said that if you are over 60, the average recovery time is 5 years.'  That shattered my spirit as I am not even off yet.  My pummeled old body can not take five more years of this.

 

Sorry for the bummer post today...I really have tried to be positive through this whole thing.  Even when my husband doubts my ability to go through this, I have given him encouragement.  Thank all of you for being there.

 

Donna

 

 

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Of all the things I have read about Benzos  Donna,  I never read anything on age and withdrawal.  Please stay the course Donna.  Linder 
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Hey Donna - I never heard that either - 5 years of w/d if you are over 60.  The Ashton Manual says that "older" people can get off just like younger people.  For some it takes longer, but for some it takes a shorter amount of time. TC had sent me some info on statistics of people getting off benzos - old, young, men, women, which drugs, how long, etc.  I will try to find it and send it to you if I can.  Do you want me to.

Don't reinstate - it won't help you.....you would probably have to updose to a large amount and what if that doesn't work = updose some more?

You have fought this for such a long time, keep going.  I know how you feel - I have wanted to reinstate so many times.  But we're in this Hell now and we have to keep going as hard as it is and it is inhuman and cruel.

Love Hoping2BFree

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Donna:

 

I understand all you are going through. Having the flu makes w/d much worse, and with that comes more negative thoughts. Keep that in mind. I would not decide on what course to take until  I was a little better. I have felt the same in my desperate moments, but when the s/x let up even a bit, I felt that maybe I could go on.  :sick:

 

I wondered, do you have a plan in the event you don't want to continue the process. For me, I started getting paradoxical reactions to benzos (aside from xanax which I tried right at the end -but the interdose w/d were horrific and I knew I could not live a life like that) Also, a/d s gave me such a reaction of anxiety and body zaps that I could never go back on them. Tried other things as well to knock out the w/d and all of them just bit me. I am too sensitive to have any drug option open to me.

 

So, I can never go back as I see it, only forward, because I really don't think I have any option.

 

Finally, I would not listen about the age related w/d thing. I never heard of it either. Alright, maybe some of us won't be completely healed for longer than the average time, but I am sure we will all be a lot better and more functional than we are now. I may not be the best "me"  :) I am going to be after two years, but hopefully, I will be able to work again, socialize and move my life forward. Just not tolerate as much stress. But, maybe that is ok.  :angel:

 

Best wishes,

Nuala

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Donna, I'm just a bit older than you, and going through a valium taper (from low-dose Xanax and Ambien). I'm so sorry to hear that you also had to suffer through the shingles. I've heard it's pretty awful. And then to get the flu as well!

 

Like you, I  have this worry in the back of my head about what's going to happen when I jump off. I've been tapering Valium for about 3 months and now down to .5 mg, the point where I intended to jump. But I know that even at this low daily dose, this drug is still affecting me. What I notice most is a lack of appetite. I take my usual portion but I can't finish more than half of it. I get hungry, but nothing appeals, not even my favorite candy. I know this appetite thing is normal in withdrawal, but I didn't expect it to last so long, when I'm taking so little Valium. At least the headaches are much better, and I'm grateful for that.

 

So, I'm thinking maybe I'll continue to taper....a week at .4mg, a week at .3....I don't know if that's a good idea, but I suppose it can't hurt.

 

I too have an old dog...almost 13 now, and I know he won't be around much longer. I dread losing him, he's such good company and I know I'll never have another dog like him. So far he's in good health, but in this breed, Australian Shepherd, age 13 is about as long as they live. I just hope I can get completely over this benzo thing before I have to deal with losing him.

 

Sending you my very best wishes for a brighter future. Please keep us updated.

 

Nov

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Thank you, Kat.  I just need to hear 'don't do it' right now.  I think what pushed me over the edge was a phone call I got from a friend who actually wanted to understand what I was going through so she bought a book on Benzo's.  She said 'You know, this doctor said that if you are over 60, the average recovery time is 5 years.'  That shattered my spirit as I am not even off yet.  My pummeled old body can not take five more years of this.

 

Sorry for the bummer post today...I really have tried to be positive through this whole thing.  Even when my husband doubts my ability to go through this, I have given him encouragement.  Thank all of you for being there.

 

Donna

 

 

 

Donna, I need to go out asap. and hope I can answer you as well as if I had more time.  Your friend is well-meaning, but what she has read is a ton of garbage, as far as I'm concerned.  No matter what our age, it's different for all of us. 

 

The population is ageing, and when we were younger, doctors prescribed the benzos without fully realizing the potential harm of long-term use.  Now many are finally getting it.

 

You will heal Donna, and it won't take 5 years...it will take a lot less time. I get what you mean about encouraging your husband.  It's a 2-way street, and if our spouses can provide support, it is up to us somehow to give them some encouragement, no matter how little, just to let them know they are making a difference. Don't give up, Donna. 

 

Thoughts and prayers,

Kat

 

 

 

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Thank you all for encouraging words.  These bad days come too often and I have to think about the fleeting moments of relief.  What my friend read to me out of that stupid book was that as we age it takes longer for EVERYTHING to heal, especially the brain...hence those who are elderly can expect a longer recovery time.  THAT brough me to my knees as I have been suffering for almost two years already from both Lexapro and valium w/d.

 

Novembre...don't put a time line on your sweet dog...you may be pleasantly surprised.  My Dalmatian whose life span is supposed to be 10, lived to be 18 years old and so far is the longest recorded age for her breed.  She passed away during my Lexapro w/d and I survived it but I don't know how.  The loss of Dylan this week has shattered me.  I actually laid on the floor with him and begged him to hang on.  How selfish is that.  He said 'I can't' with his eyes and I at least had enough functioning brain cells to know what was the right thing to do.  I am sick to death of only thinking about myself....making every decision all about me and these &^%$- symptoms.  I think I can speak for us all when I say this Hell should be reserved for axe murderers and child abusers.

 

Donna

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[f5...]

I can relate to what concerns you have about age. I'm a bit younger than you (56) but not a youngster, either. I've got 13-1/2 years of benzo dependence behind me and I CT'd on April 2. I reinstated after 16 days (April 18) but it didn't really help so after 3-1/2 days I resumed the CT (April 21) and have kept at it since then. All told, I'm now working on my 32nd day since April 2 of not taking a benzo. When I hear that I may be dealing with this insanity for another two, three months, or much longer, it's really disheartening. However, what choice do I have? Go back to popping pills? No. I'm pushing through this haze and if I can hang in there, I hope those of you who are having a hard time and are ahead of me can also keep on keeping on so I have some guides to let me know what to expect!

 

I, too, have a lot of trouble with sleep. I can sleep 5-6 hours but I am awakened by overwhelming anxiety mixed with overwhelming emotions churning together. I have extremely vivid dreams. I dread going to sleep at night because I know it's going to be a journey through darkness and hell before the sun comes up. But I also know that all of this that is going on could never have happened while I was popping Valium in my mouth. I never had dreams and my sleep was flat and dull. As crazy as things are now, it's a good crazy because it tells me my brain is starting to function again. Yes, it's not functioning very well. It's like starting a car that's been in storage for a long time -- it belches, smokes and chugs a while until the engine begins to run smoothly. My brain is belching, smoking and chugging as it comes back to life. Now I just have to hang on until it begins to function a bit more smoothly.

 

Hang in there. Weeks will turn into months and month after month you'll finally hit a year and then two years and somehow you'll get through this and someday look back and be amazed at your accomplishment. YOU CAN DO IT!

 

This is me on Day 32:  :idiot:

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Donna - I was just talking to someone on another forum and she told me that she knows a gentleman who at 72 just got off a big dose of benzos and is doing well and so I am that helps to put your mind to rest.  She told me that I shouldn't have a problem.... just wanted to reassure you...so sorry for upsetting you!

Hoping

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Hi Donna, I was on Valium in the 80's, I was almost 40.  I got off the stuff, has wds for 5-6 months, but I "healed" completely.  My hubby was put on Ativan/Lorazepam in 2010, found this site, got him tapered off of it Jan 2011.  Ron is 68, he is 16 wks off now, yes had sx wds, they can be difficult at times, but being on the drugs are worse, as it never ends.  Getting off this is the key, going thru the wds or up and down, but be more scared of staying on the drug, as it would be nothing more then an unending cycle of torment.  Your friend meant well, but.... well.. your foundation was shattered hearing that, which is totally understandable.  As Dr. Ashton states "everyone" heals from these drugs, 6-18 months, all based on length of time, dose ... age has zero to do with it.  You will be fine.  I'm so sorry hearing of your sister's passing and then your beloved dog.  Yes, I understand the "best friend".. my two best friends, sibiling from the same litter, went the same year 7 months apart, both almost 14 years old.  My heart was truly broken.  Donna, you try to keep going forward in your plan, please try never to up it... just, one foot in front of the other and "please" try not to scare yourself about the wds afterwords..  you "will" get thru them... to the light at the end of the tunnel that's waiting for you.  Remember, us "older" folks have wisdom of the knocks of life that gives a stength to get thru life, like we learned.  Now another challenge, but "you will" get there.  Best to you.  If you are a Mom.... Happy Mother's Day.  I'm not... but I send my love to my Mom in the next plane of life.  Bless you Donna.  Always, Pattylu
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Thank you PattyLu for your kind words.  The loss of my dog has devestated me but I know we did the right thing, for his sake.  I was on Valium in the 70's also after having a complete hysterectomy at 23 years old.  I was on three times the dosage and for twice the amount of time...stopped c/t and never had one symptom.  I had no idea what was going on with me when I reached tolerance this time as I had never experienced withdrawals from the drug before.  Just goes to show ya...

 

Thank you again for your support/condolences and bless you also.

 

Donna

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