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Feel like I’m in prison


[Lu...]

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[Lu...]

Can’t get outta of my head. I can’t believe that I have to do this. No sleep, work is bad, family events starting to happen and I feel emotional detached, no emotions. Waiting for bad things to happen. Wtf this is nuts how this happened and how no one is accountable for this. 

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[Br...]

Hello @[Lu...]  -Withdrawal can feel like a horrible nightmare that will never end.  I'm guessing just about everyone here can totally relate to what you're going through. That feeling of being trapped in your head where you're tortured by frightening thoughts and a sense of doom, feeling numb and detached -it's brutal. I went through it too and to my amazement I came through to the other side.  You'll get through this too.

There are a lot of posts here about ways of coping with symptoms.  Every coping technique you practice regularly can add up to making your symptoms a little more tolerable.  Over time you'll develop a toolbox you can reach into when you need it, now while you're in the thick of withdrawal and after you've recovered.

Here are a few thing that can help:

Please be sure to read Success Stories - it will help keep your sense of hope and optimism afloat.

 

Healthy eating, drinking plenty of water everyday to stay well hydrated and flush toxins

Moderate exercise - walking in nature 30 minutes every day can help give you a sense of wellbeing.

Distraction - Shift your attention away from negative thought loops into distracting activities like, tidying, household projects, puzzles, drawing/painting, funny TV shows , etc. - anything that absorbs your attention so you stop focusing on your symptoms. This is probably the most effective tools of all.

Guided meditation apps like Headspace or Calm - if you have a quiet, private place to go at work you could do one of these.

Sticking to a routine each day, getting as much rest (not necessarily sleep) as possible

Keeping a gratitude journal - every night write down 3 good things that happened or that your observed that day.  It doesn't matter whether it's something very small or very big or somewhere in between.

Warm bath with Epsom salts and a few drops of essential oil (lavender is calming but whatever you like) for 20 minutes

Soothing music

Funny shows/movies - laughter is healing and gets your endorphins flowing

Chamomile tea is very soothing for many of us; others think it isn't helpful - you may want to experiment and see if it works for you.

Avoid stress as much as you can.  Stress is hard on our already overburdened CNS and can rev up symptoms

Breathing techniques: 

4-7-8 breathing  Inhale 4 counts; hold 7 counts; exhale 8 counts

Box Breathing:  Inhale very slowly for count of 4; hold count of 4; exhale count of 4; hold count of 4

Positive statements/Prayer - repeating I will not feel this way forever I am safe. I am healing. I am okay

 

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[Lu...]

I’m 15 days CT and it’s getting worse and worse. Work is bad and I cannot even have a conversation with out feeling like I sound dumb, very little concentration, my daughter’s graduation from high school and I cannot feel joy or excitement. No emotions. I’m reading post that this can last months to years which I don’t have. Scared at night due to no sleep, my appetite is gone as well as my appearance. I’m avoiding family at all cost because I feel like they see me as a junkie. I’ve never played around with pills before, I miss drinking and laughing and enjoying life instead I’m hiding from everyone. No one understands this but thinks it’s all in my head and say I’m my worse enemy. Money is bad right now with work slowing down. Seems like there is no happiness anymore. 

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[Br...]

I'm so sorry.  This can be such a hard, lonely road - that's one of the reasons it's important you keep coming here and reaching out for support from others - we get it - we understand what you're going through and we're here to help you get through it.  Nobody can understand what this is like if they haven't been through it themselves.  

Happiness and feeling good again will come back.  You're in the thick of the hardest phase of withdrawal. It will get better.  It takes time and it's often harder when it's a cold turkey. The nightmare will ease up.  It will call on a lot of your strength but the body and brain know how to heal.  I hope you'll try to go easy on yourself in the meantime and take the best care of yourself that you can.

There are a lot of good ideas for coping with insomnia - have you seen this one?

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[Cr...]

@[Br...] Did you link to the correct post for the insomnia coping idea?:unsure: Maybe I missed something or, like me, you sometimes copy stuff you didn't mean to.

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[Cr...]

@[Lu...]

Brighterday gave you some excellent coping skills to make the process of overcoming withdrawal a little easier. They won't get rid of the symptoms but they can help you cope with them a little better.

We all understand how frustrating this is for you as many of us have been where you are and a lot are going through the same issues.

Feeling like you are waiting for bad things to happen is a normal anxiety symptom called "Feeling of Dread" or "Sense of Impending Doom". It will come and go, it is not permanent.

Your acute phase may be over soon and there is a chance things could improve. Since you are not too far out you may be able to reinstate and do a slow taper. If you do, you may want to ask your Dr. about using a benzo with a longer half-life

Otherwise you are going to have to accept that this is going to take some time. I hope you luck out and have a speedy recovery as some people do.

Edited by [Cr...]
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[Lu...]

How long does the acute phase normally last? I know everyone is different but is this a couple of weeks thing or months ? 

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[Lu...]

Me feeling spaced out or brain fog due to no sleep or is this normal? Is this permanent? I read articles that this could be permanent? Anything I can take to not feel spaced out? 

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[Lu...]

I’m sorry for acting crazy and freaking out just not use to this feeling and didn’t know that these were the consequences of dealing with these meds. I’m just in total shock we are on our own and there is nothing the doctors can do to help us besides time. I cannot wrap my head around this 

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[Cr...]

Usually a couple of weeks for low dose short term users. However, once acute is over you won't necessarily become symptom free. You may experience anxiety, depression, and various physical symptoms but they may not be as intense or clustered like they were in the acute phase.

Neither I nor anyone else here can tell you exaxctly how long the total process will last and what symptoms you will get. Not even the late Dr. Ashton could do that. 

I think you should be okay as long as you get back to being 'functional' and the symptoms become more tolerable. Hopefully that happens soon.

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[Cr...]
13 minutes ago, [[L...] said:

Me feeling spaced out or brain fog due to no sleep or is this normal? Is this permanent? I read articles that this could be permanent? Anything I can take to not feel spaced out? 

It is not permanent. It may mostly be from acute withdrawal, with lack of sleep exacerbating it some.

I too was in shock once I found out the truth about these meds after I had to visit the ER. Those that have reactions as bad as ours are not that common relative to the total number of people that use benzos and come off. Whether our misfortune is due to genetics or some random element I do not know.

You are right, we are on our own in regards to a quick fix medical solution to this suffering, but we are not alone in going through the withdrawal process thanks to places like Benzo Buddies.

Edited by [Cr...]
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[Lu...]

I’ve tried hydroxyzine, melatonin, magnesium and nothing I forced myself to eat heavy at night. Milk water everything. I cannot accept that this is it? 

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[Br...]
41 minutes ago, [[C...] said:

@[Br...] Did you link to the correct post for the insomnia coping idea?:unsure: Maybe I missed something or, like me, you sometimes copy stuff you didn't mean to.

Thanks - fixed it :)

 

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[Cr...]
6 minutes ago, [[L...] said:

I’ve tried hydroxyzine, melatonin, magnesium and nothing I forced myself to eat heavy at night. Milk water everything. I cannot accept that this is it? 

Eat heavy at night? I usually ate a light snack that is low in sugar. Too much food could have your blood sugar all over the place while trying to sleep.

You did a cold turkey off of 1.5 mgs of Xanax (3 x .5 a day for 6 months). Cold turkeys are inherently the most brutal way to come off benzos. I am not surprised you have severe insomnia issues to the point where no sleep meds or supplements will even helping out during your acute withdrawal.

Outside of Z drugs like Ambien/Lunesta (which you should avoid due to acting like mild benzos), the most help you can get in prescription form is low dose Remeron (AD) or Seroquel (AP). Both may have side effects and dependence issues from repeated use, but they have helped others find sleep in withdrawal. For me, those would be last resort choices if I reached my breaking point with needing sleep.

 

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[Lu...]

Do you think because I did cold Turkey this could last longer these feelings and do something permanent? I have no urge to touch another Xanax. But I’m starting to get to that bad point where I wanna go to the ER, but afraid they won’t do anything for me. I feel like I’m in a bad nightmare and I cannot get up from this new reality. 

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[Cr...]
15 minutes ago, [[L...] said:

Bout to go to a family function? Can I drink? 

Drinking alcohol 3 months into my recovery caused me a horrible setback. Alcohol affects the body in ways similar to Xanax in regards to Gaba receptors. I know you want to drink again, but in your condition I do not think it would be a wise choice. I wouldn't want to see you beating yourself up with regret should you have a bad reaction.

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[Lu...]
Posted (edited)

This is terrible thought I would stop and go back to normal after a week or two. So 6/24 months I gotta live like this? I can’t with this anymore it’s not worth living if it like this EVERYDAY… Miserable at home miserable at work. Miserable everywhere. 

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[Cr...]
50 minutes ago, [[L...] said:

Do you think because I did cold Turkey this could last longer these feelings and do something permanent?

A cold turkey will cause more severe symptoms compared to a slow taper. It is possible that it may increase the time needed to recover fully vs a slow taper if you averaged all the people in each category.

That said, i have witnessed people that did a CT that recovered in a few months and people that did a slow taper that took years to recover. There is no guarentees in withdrawal. We do know that the acute phase is easier with slow tapers due to anecdotal member testimony and basic medical guides for medications with dependency issues.

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[Cr...]
34 minutes ago, [[L...] said:

This is terrible thought I would stop and go back to normal after a week or two. So 6/24 months I gotta live like this? I can’t with this anymore it’s not worth living if it like this EVERYDAY… Miserable at home miserable at work. Miserable everdwhere.

You are currently experiencing an acute wd that will eventually subside. Afterwards you will probably experience some PAWS symptoms for awhile after acute is over. How tolerable those symptoms will be is unknown and based on individual factors, but they should not be as intense/numerous as they were just after your cold turkey.

All the members currently suffering would like nothing more than for life to go back to normal right away. Unfortunately benzo withdrawal/recovery can be quite a lengthy process with lots of variance in how things play out.

We are all equally frustrated as you are about how unfair and cruel benzo wd can be. Your recovery journey will be easier if you allow yourself to reach the acceptance phase. A lot of people do seem to go through the stages of grief when confronting this reality. Be it denial, anger, bargaining, or depression... eventually you need to accept the situation as is. Do not be afraid to reach out for matters regarding your mental health during this time.

 

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[Lu...]

I do really appreciate all of the help but hearing that this could last months maybe even years and permanently damage I cannot accept. There should be a class action lawsuit this is poison. I cannot work function as a father and provider. This was not mentioned to me as a permanent side effect for the rest of my life gives me more anxiety than I can handle. 

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[Pa...]

I know you're in a bad place, when the enormity of our situation finally sinks in, its devastating.  But all of us have the capacity for acceptance and this will hopefully be your next step.  Finding a way to accept what has happened and finding a way to live with it is paramount to your recovery.  

I quit cold turkey and recovered but I remember well those first few weeks, they were brutal.  I lived one minute at a time, and time seemed to stand still.

You are injured and you need to allow yourself time to heal from your injury.  You can't be expected to do what you've always done while you're healing, if you had broken bones or major surgery, you and those around you would understand, this injury is no different.  

Your life and your situation has changed, you've been hit with something you didn't expect but you can get through this.  We don't know how long it will take, but each passing day is another day towards recovery. 

 

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[Ca...]
10 hours ago, [[L...] said:

I’m 15 days CT and it’s getting worse and worse. Work is bad and I cannot even have a conversation with out feeling like I sound dumb, very little concentration, my daughter’s graduation from high school and I cannot feel joy or excitement. No emotions. I’m reading post that this can last months to years which I don’t have. Scared at night due to no sleep, my appetite is gone as well as my appearance. I’m avoiding family at all cost because I feel like they see me as a junkie. I’ve never played around with pills before, I miss drinking and laughing and enjoying life instead I’m hiding from everyone. No one understands this but thinks it’s all in my head and say I’m my worse enemy. Money is bad right now with work slowing down. Seems like there is no happiness anymore. 

I know, sometimes all you can do is go through it and keep your head down and avoid stress. Sometimes that has to be enough for the time being otherwise stress goes up. Gotta take gentle care of yourself best you can, amidst the turmoil and take heart we are with you - You are still early on so give yourself time to heal. If you had the flu, you'd have to deal with that, perhaps miss a few events or do much socializing, again, to keep the stress level down.

I used to meditate everyday but since the Benzos ordeal, I just cannot focus. I still try but if at the moment, I can't, and that has to be okay.

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