It's been a couple of weeks since I left a voicemail for my psychiatrist informing her of my decision to discontinue all meds and the canceling of all future appointments. I closed the message by thanking her for everything and welcoming her to call me if she thought it warranted some discussion. So far no return call. Silly, but I'm a bit disappointed and surprised not to hear back. I've been seeing her for nearly 4 years. She's witnessed a lot of my story and has seen first-hand how antidepressants have proven ineffective for me. One of the reasons I've stayed with her was because I sensed she might actually care to a tiny degree. I'm fully aware that doctors, especially therapists in particular, strive to avoid emotional connections with patients. It shouldn't be any other way. But speaking from the depressive patient's point of view, I think we're all looking for someone who even remotely cares in some way or another. I've been to doctors who treated their patients like cattle literally overbooking and subsequently packing the waiting room so as to see each patient for literally 2-5 minutes. It's humiliating and insensitive but it occurs daily in any given office.
I don't expect to be treated any differently than any other patient but it's given me pause to think that she would — at the very least from a doctor/patient relationship — feel compelled to check on me based on what she may consider to be an irrational decision on my part. Just a professional courtesy. I'm sure she's busy and may have intentions to follow up but hasn't had the time. Who's to know? I've noted in recent posts that my last couple of appointments ended swiftly as she seemingly appeared to be flustered with me. As each day goes by I'm convinced I will not hear from her again. At the risk of sounding like a whining baby, I did think she cared but I apparently misread her.
After much thought and contemplation I've decided to cease all psychotropic drugs. This may be a huge mistake but I can't justify continuing any longer. I have enough left over to titrate down without quitting cold turkey. It's just a matter of halving the dose over a fews days time, then halving again. I've called the doctor and left a voicemail informing her the decision's already been made and all future appointments are canceled. I invited her to return my call if she's so inclined to discuss this but no reply as of yet.
I'll now have to brace myself for withdrawal symptoms and the sad reality that my drugless self will surface once again reminding me why I take these meds in the first place. But I need a brain cleansing of some kind. I need a break from these chemicals. I have to break this cycle. I've sworn off drugs in the past only to return with my tail between my legs realizing I can't function without being chemically propped up. It's so cruel. It's anybody's guess as to what will happen. I have to see this through and find an alternative before my brain becomes any more scrambled.
At this writing I'm three weeks into this Saphris crap which has been doing a number on me with its side effects. My mornings have become exhaustive and breathless from sleep deprivation because of this new disorder I've been blessed with. I literally cannot keep my eyes opened after waking. I'm disoriented, dizzy, light-headed, heavy-headed, irritable, exasperated, taxed, spent, you name it. My relationship with my family is strained and stressed. I'm distant from my wife. My wife is distant from me. I don't know why things continue to pile on. What's next?
As with all these damned drugs there's an ironic marked worsening of my depression. Another drug that broke its promise.
Amidst the fog I'm in at the moment, I'm trying to view this god forsaken drug option from the bigger picture:
• Overall, they've done more harm than good.
• The accumulative cost is ridiculous.
• Hopes go up with each new one only to be dashed each and every time.
• A broken jaw is a testament to prevalent side effects verses benefits.
• The idea of depending on a pill to get through life is patently wrong.
• Unknown, long-term physical damage could be realized in years to come.
• Most lab rats die before their time.
• Depression has never lifted.
That's the short list of cons. There's not one pro. I live day to day hanging on a thin thread of hope that maybe this tiny pill ... THIS ONE ... will save my life. It's too pathetic.
I toy with the idea of living drug free sans even aspirin. Is it even possible after all these years? Would my system accept such a concept or would I collapse in a heap of withdrawal?
Somewhere exists a chemical free answer. I long for something natural, age-old, logical, gentle, soothing, warming, welcoming. Something real, somewhere.