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Need some senior members opinions


[dr...]

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There has been more and more thoughts of reinstatement for me these days, however I have been seeing brief 'windows' or at least what I think are windows of minutes to an hour or more if I'm lucky. Everything is still bad during these times but the intensity lessens to a more tolerable hell. I have had times of being in the realm of normal but they are so far between and I feel almost as if I'm lying when I type this as if maybe I had only imagined they were there and good. I am having almost daily suicidal ideation and I know we don't like to talk about that much on here and that everyone is stressed out. It's simply a fact and a symptom that is unbearably hard to cope with. I am talking severe severe ideation. I keep telling myself to push through and somehow I am still here today, but this is completely out of control difficult. It's incredibly frustrating knowing I was never a depressed individual or had any anxiety previous to this and that this has turned me into this mess of a person I don't recognize. I am at almost 4.5 months out now and I am wondering from all of those senior members out of all the months or years you've been here, am I likely turning a corner soon? I'd like to think I am but the periods of 'relief' are so minute that I really can't fathom turning a corner or even returning to normal from this. I have been tapering propranolol and am at 24 mg from 30. I know that propranolol can cause depression so that could be why it is so extreme for me but I can't taper any faster than 1 or 2 mg a week without getting a reaction to it. The day to day is unbearable and I need an answer. Reinstatement would mean a serious gamble, one that could cost me my life, but doing nothing could also cost me dearly. Anti-D's could be serious business and create more hell for me as well. What do you do when you are that desperate everyday? I can do this for maybe a little while longer but these desperate days are far too often and severe. If I don't get some let up soon to feel in the realm of comfortable I don't know how I'm gonna make it. I did have a paradoxical type reaction to the klonopin when I took it at two weeks off my taper after I had smoked pot, however I felt that after a few hours of hell I actually found myself more relaxed and sleepy. Two weeks is much different than 4 months and two weeks, but I am constantly searching for an out. Flumazenil has crossed my mind as well. I have been told that it is more likely to work when you are off the drug in a protracted withdrawal but I have heard of it making some people worse. They say to only try reinstatement or anti d's if you are suicidal and have no quality of life. I am pretty much there but the bastard viking in me keeps dragging my ass along every day trying to stay the coarse. Any wisdom is appreciated.
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Hi Drakelore, I am so sorry that you are having a rough time. I know how difficult it all can be. Things definitely get better with time, but I know it never seems fast enough. 4.5 months out for some can still be early in benzo w/d. Ashton states that on average healing occurs between 6-18 months, for some taking less time and for others taking a little more time. Everyone's healing time differs so its hard to say how long it will take to heal. Everyone heals at their own rate. The key is everyone heals, so if you didn't have these issues prior to benzos, you won't have them after healing from benzos. I can only tell you that reinstatement is a huge gamble after 2 weeks off. It is definitely a crapshoot as to whether it will help you or not. Some find that it doesn't help them at all, others have found that reinstatement has only made them worse because then they have a second worse taper to go through. I know there were a few on here that did a dose correction after cutting too much/too fast and that it helped them, but again they were not benzo free yet. I am sure others will stop by with their own experiences regarding reinstatement. I reinstated after only 7 days off and I still to this day wonder if I made the right decision or if I would have just stayed off would my healing time have been shorter? That is an answer I will never know. I am so sorry that you are suffering and going through such a hard time. I can't tell you what to do, that is between you and your Dr. Only you can decide what you can tolerate and what is best for you. I just want you to stay safe, so if it feels like it is all too much please get some help whether its from a Dr, hospital, family, or friends. Please call 911 or go to an ER if you feel you need immediate help. Call a family member or friend to come and stay with you. It concerns me that you say you have severe suicide ideation so please if you feel you need it, seek help and take care of yourself. Being benzo free is a great goal, but of course your sanity and life comes first so please take care of you and do what you need to do to get some help. Hang in there and keep us posted on how you are doing.
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1st of all, I hope you are doing okay! I am not a senior member... but If you need to call a hotline, there is one out there! Google crisis hotline, and you can talk to an individual, privately, no cost etc. if you are having suicidal thoughts. I'll say a prayer for you tonight for sure! Just hang in there.

 

It's just so hard for me to absorb that you were only on KL for 3 months... and you are 4.5 months out, and are having this hard of a time? I'm not saying it can't happen, b/c im not even done w/my taper yet.

 

Can I ask you this? What was the reason you were put on KL for? Was it anxiety? Depression?

 

In my honest opinion... if you were put on it for anxiety or depression... maybe you should look into an AD? That's if you are that miserable or having suicidal thoughts.

 

Are you seeing a therapist? Cognitive behavioral therapy could help you greatly too! That's what I'm doing.

 

I'm weaning off of ativan slowly, seeing a psychiatrist who's giving me CBT, and he also gave me Remeron (mirtazapine) to help with the w/d then I'll wean from the Remeron in a few months, and continue heavy heavy CBT! To make sure my anxiety doesnt come back... and I will learn on my own how to deal w/it instead of benzos.

 

I'm not trying to encourage you to take more meds... but since you are having suicidal thoughts, you might want to consider something.

 

Please hang in there! THIS TOO SHALL PASS!!!

 

What other meds are you currently taking? Did you say propranolol? Isnt that a beta blocker? I heard those can actually cause depression yes. But I'm no doctor.

 

You know your body more than anyone. Do what you feel is right! Think HARD though about reinstating on a benzo again! Maybe there is something out there that is less toxic?

 

GOD BLESS!

 

 

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TImes like these, you have to think ahead to when things are mostly better. Imagine yourself there (which you CAN do mentally even when you feel rotten). Let go of WHEN it is. Just see yourself well and happy. Spend some time imagining what it's like to sleep well, have no anxiety, etc. Imagine yourself at that future moment, thinking back to this day. I'm serious. When things are real tough are the times when we have to work extra hard on the spiritual and coping level. We have to alter our perspective.

 

Do you have a counselor? Close friends or family who you are in contact every day? Are you open to trying 12 step meetings? I mention this because they have me tools, and the meeting itself was positive and gave me something to look forward to every day. If I hadn't gone, I'd've been thinking about suicide too.

 

I did really really struggle with the unknown time element. How long is this going to last? At my last psychiatrist appointment, I came back determined to resign myself to a possible 18 month recovery as she suggested. I couldn't see how I'd have the strength to do it, but I didn't see anything else I'd do. I have kids, so suicide was always out of the question. I kept practicing the one day at a time thing. That and the meetings were vital to my day-to-day sense of hope.

 

The hope is that things DO resolve. You just don't know when. Someone said (Ghandi? Dalai Lama?) Faith is believing in something without evidence. Faith and hope are essential ingredients to benzo w/d.

 

 

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I've thought about going to a 12 step meeting just to see other people, but I have little in common with them and don't really plan on learning any of the 12 steps. I am pretty isolated as I only have family here in this new area (had to move home from this) but I talk with others going through it on a daily basis. Yes it's hard for me to believe that I became so screwed up after only 3 months on K. The reason I was on it was because I had a bad reaction to a medication for acid reflux called reglan. I developed TD-like symptoms and other horrible symptoms. A neurologist put me on K for it and I weaned off after 2 months use for a month, totaling 3 months. At a week off I felt good and smoked pot because I didn't want the cross tolerance situation with alcohol and it sent me into withdrawal. I tried to reinstate and had a bad reaction initially. I believe when I tried to reinstate my body took it as a cold turkey and put me at 3-4 months use. I was the most laid back guy and very confident with who I was before this. No anxiety, no depression, and definitely no suicidal ideation. There are external factors and environmental factors that I'm sure contribute to this horrible depression but there is little I can do about this. I've lost my apartment, my long term gf, my ability to work, to go to school, had to move with my parents. I am in CBT but I feel it has little to no effect on me in these harsh waves. What can they really do when you are so assaulted with symptoms and mental anguish that is completely out of your control? If the anxiety was more manageable I believe it would be more effective. As someone said before, classic approaches to anxiety in withdrawal are like throwing teaspoons of water on a bonfire. The ER is not practical as they will likely just get me through a singular episode. There is no cure for this condition except time or a gamble of reinstatement. Then of course there's another gamble of flumazenil.
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[0c...]

Drak,

I had flumazenil injections in month 4...didn't help me AT ALL. Not to say that it won't help you, but I got nothing out of it other than a hole in my arm. Sucked HUGE.

 

I wish you the best. You sound just like me when I was where you are. I am praying that a decision comes to you...and one that you can live with.

 

Much love, ((HUGS)) and prayers. Contact me if you ever need to talk.

 

Love, Nic

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draklore,

 

I'm really sorry you are in so much pain right now. As you say, you feel really isolated; having moved, broken relationship, not working at the moment. I think you have a good idea about finding a support group--there are more kinds than just 12-step groups. If nothing else, finding some sort of group, even if it's not even a support group, I think would do you good. Just seeing other people might help distract you from your symptoms and connecting with people really goes a long way to not feeling isolated. I know that won't take away the pain of withdrawal symptoms but being with other people can sure help. I wish you many windows coming soon.

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Drak

the 12 steps may give you some foundation in your life that will help you navigate the slings and arrows of life. Alcoholics have NO way to understand benzo withdrawal, however the steps are an amazing way to live your life.

 

I hope you find some relief from your sx soon. Time, a positive attitude, and a courageous belief in yourself will help. :)

 

Hang in there.

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