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Not takeing medication.

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Tainted

Well-known member
Joined
May 1, 2009
Messages
105
Location
Kent
Hello all

After two admissions to hospital over the past twelve months. After my last admission to hospital in January 2009 my psych doctor changed my medication to Venaflaxine - 225 mg and Lithium 600mg. Although people around me told me I was getting better Ididn't feel this at all. For the last four weeks I haven't taken any of my medication and feel a lot more like my usual functioning self.

Whilst I think this is a postivie step I am very scared of mentioneing the no meds to my husband and the doctors. The two times was admitted to hospital it was believed the not takeing medication and heavy alcohol use was the reason why. My husband told me I had to help myself as the was no more he could do to help me and it was in my hands to help me get better. I'm scared if I tell him he will be angry and give up on me.

I'm not sure of the side effwects, does any one have any advice? whilst on Lithium my thyroid has become under active so I am not on medication for that as well (although now not takeing it) does anyone know how this can effect my thyroid or if it does effect my thyroid?
 
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grace68

Well-known member
Joined
May 12, 2009
Messages
599
Location
yorkshire
i really feel for you, tainted. i have often been in your position, off meds without anyone knowing. i, also, usually feel better for quite a while without meds, and can't be persuaded otherwise.

the main problem you have is monitoring your thyroid and other health checks, because the dr will always request a lithium level too? i am not sure if your thyroid function will automatically return to normal just by stopping the lithium. i suppose if you are feeling well, that could be a good sign about your thyroid function.

but it seems quite worrying not having proper medical checks. i know some people may say you're better off without the medics and their pills, but i'm not sure- safety is an issue for me.

i really hope you are ok, and carry on being ok :hug:
 
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Apotheosis

Guest
I'm not sure of the side effwects, does any one have any advice? whilst on Lithium my thyroid has become under active so I am not on medication for that as well (although now not takeing it) does anyone know how this can effect my thyroid or if it does effect my thyroid?
I personally think that it should be individual choice whether people decide to come off meds or not, & people should be fully supported in that decision; by the medical profession & their families/friends. This is not often the case.

I have been forced, coerced & pressured into taking & staying on meds, & given virtually no support in my attempts to come off the meds that I am on. I am in the position now of med dependency, & I don't see where I can find the support I need to try another withdrawal. Support is one of the most important things in med withdrawal. I don't know what to suggest 'Tainted', other than to express your wishes as clearly & rationally as you can to your medical team & the people in your life. I know how hard these things are. There is very little choice for most of us - it's meds or nothing, & it seems that most people will focus forcefully on getting & keeping us on meds - it's a sad state of affairs, & I think it's very wrong. I personally think that this is a human rights issue.

There is a a lot of information out there on med withdrawal -

I found this video the other day -

http://www.mentalhealthforum.net/forum/showthread.php?t=5149

There is also a lot of information & support groups/people on line, & grass roots organisations that support MH choice & rights; here are some -

http://www.mindfreedom.org/

http://theicarusproject.net/

http://www.breggin.com/

http://www.comingoff.com/

http://bipolarblast.wordpress.com/

http://www.theroadback.org/

http://www.rufusmay.com/

http://www.asylumonline.net/

http://www.oneinahundred.co.uk/

If you run some Google searches, then you will start to find a lot of stuff on these subjects. Hope that helps, & I wish you success in what you choose to do.
 
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Tortoise

Tortoise

Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2009
Messages
21
Location
London. UK
Thanks for the links Apotheosis.:)

I watched the video and found it kind of inspiring.

A large part of me would like to come off my current anti-depressant,
but I've only been taking it for a fortnight and my new Consultant advised me to stick with it for at least another 4 weeks.

I don't have the kind of support in my community which the guy in the video was talking about. I know that psychiatric meds are toxic to a certain degree but I'm too afraid of what might happen if I do decide to start reducing my dose.

An awful lot of this stuff is of American origin. I'm not expressing any kind of anti-American bias here but I would feel more comfortable if the sources were from the UK.

Excuse the cheek but are you American? Your location has a rather cryptic description. If you don't want to answer that's fine. If you do, an honest answer would help because my gut feeling about the internet is that it has as much in common with physical reality as television. In other words, it seems like a breeding ground for a kind of fake fantasy life?

I shall probably get criticism for this comment because I haven't gone into enough explanatory detail. Forum's like this one are the exception of course.
I suppose I'm biting the hand that feeds here. I just wish I could find more group or individual based real human-bean support rather than relying solely on the internet to discuss these important Mental Health matters.

If you think my assumptions are wrong, please let me know.
 
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Tainted

Well-known member
Joined
May 1, 2009
Messages
105
Location
Kent
Thank you everyone for your helpful advice.

I do agree with the comments. I especially feel as though I am being pressured in to takeing medication by family and by the professionals.

I just feel so much better since not having taken any meds.

Thanks again.
 
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Tainted

Well-known member
Joined
May 1, 2009
Messages
105
Location
Kent
Hi me again!

It has just occured to me. Over the past few months I have been wakeing my husband and myself up in the middle of the night by screaming (apprentley) very loudly.

Last night my Husband told me I was screaming particularly loud and shout strange comments. Does anyone know if this could be a side effect of the withdrawl of medication. Althought I have not taken meds for some weeks now.
 
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Apotheosis

Guest
If you think my assumptions are wrong, please let me know.
No, not wrong & I agree with you.

I don't have the support either; this is the problem & always has been, I doubt that I will ever find the support that I need & have been looking for, & I have to try to accept that.

I also am afraid of reducing the dose, or messing around with the meds any more. Although I do also think that they are toxic, & I would love to eventually get off them.

Some of the sources are from the UK - the coming off site, asylum on-line, Rufus May, Mad Pride, & 'one in a hundred' are all UK sites/projects. There is a lot of UK material as well. I think it's just that the USA is a lot bigger than here.

I live on the South Coast UK in Bournemouth.

I just wish I could find more group or individual based real human-bean support rather than relying solely on the internet to discuss these important Mental Health matters.
I feel exactly the same. & in honesty, looked at as a whole, then I seriously wonder whether all my on-line stuff is that healthy? It would be better I think to go on-line once a week, for an hour tops, & get out there in the 'Real World'. But I have technology issues, & the net is good as a communication device. It's about balance again.

Thanks for your thoughtful & intelligent comments & observations.
 
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Apotheosis

Guest
Does anyone know if this could be a side effect of the withdrawl of medication. Althought I have not taken meds for some weeks now.
Hi, It's very difficult to know what is med withdrawal, from any underlying condition. Withdrawal can take a very long time. Valium / Diazepam can take up to 2 years to come out fully from the system. I used to get the worst withdrawal effects 3 months after stopping the med that I am on.

There is some good info on MIND's Site -

http://www.mind.org.uk/Information/...ing+sense+of+coming+off+psychiatric+drugs.htm
 
Tortoise

Tortoise

Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2009
Messages
21
Location
London. UK
Hi Apotheosis:)

Many thanks for your comments. I really appreciate your honesty. Clarifying the locations and content of the links you gave was most helpful.

I live in the borough of Hammersmith And Fulham in London. Sometimes I get the impression that this is not the kind of environment best suited to recovery and healing if someone is going through a MH crisis, be it nervous breakdown, depression, BPD or schizophrenia.

Somehow the south coast seems more preferable. Especially if you are near the ocean. Whatever your difficulties and circumstances, I envy you for having such a wonderful resource for solitude and contemplation. If I'm wrong about this, please excuse this lapse into imaginative wishful thinking!

I don't know what you mean by technology issues. Do you prefer the distance from other people which the internet allows as I sometimes do? Perhaps you might like to expand on this?

Your posts always seem so well-balanced, intelligent and well-written. Even your Avatar has a kind of harmonious quality to it.

I thank you for your praise about my comments. Not everyone would agree that i can be thoughtful and intelligent, especially when my emotional difficulties :mad: :scared: :unsure: :( :redface: interfere with any equanimity (new word discovered yesterday)
which may have graced me with it's presence.

Best wishes :tea:
 
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TabbyToes

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 3, 2009
Messages
206
I believe that we should have a say in whether we take medications or not. However, I also believe that it's far better to do it with the knowledge of our doctors (and family).

Withdrawals can be pretty bad for many people if they're sudden (and some meds may not be as effective if we then decide to go back on them) and it is worth being monitored to make sure we're ok.

I've come off my medications without and with my doctors knowledge. I found it far easier to express my views that I wanted to come off them than it was to admit that I'd come off them. I've recently come off them (with my doctors knowledge and support although they'd rather keep me on them).

As for your thyroid. You should, at the very least, continue to take your thyroxine and have your TSH levels monitored. Stopping lithium may not make your thyroid function properly again ~ and if you're not taking your meds it will throw your thyroid function out and cause all sorts of probs (BTDT).
 
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Apotheosis

Guest
I live in the borough of Hammersmith And Fulham in London. Sometimes I get the impression that this is not the kind of environment best suited to recovery and healing if someone is going through a MH crisis, be it nervous breakdown, depression, BPD or schizophrenia.

Somehow the south coast seems more preferable. Especially if you are near the ocean. Whatever your difficulties and circumstances, I envy you for having such a wonderful resource for solitude and contemplation. If I'm wrong about this, please excuse this lapse into imaginative wishful thinking!
Hi again, & thanks for the compliments. I used to live in a very rural area, a small village in fact - the place used to drive me nuts. Very picturesque; but I think that people can get very much the idea that the country side is this very peaceful & tranquil place, where there is no stress or worry - & sometimes it can be like that - but sometimes it isn't. I moved in the end - I live in central town, I much prefer being somewhere busier - but this place is not London - far from it. I do enjoy it here - the beach, close to shops, & close to the countryside too. There are far better MH services around here as well, although they are still lacking.

There is definitely more opportunity for more Solitude & contemplation.

I don't think that cities are conducive to recovery, peace & general well being; although some people appear to thrive in city environments. Sometimes I like to visit London, but I have not been in a while. I personally wouldn't want to live in a Big City. But they do interest me.

I don't know what you mean by technology issues. Do you prefer the distance from other people which the internet allows as I sometimes do? Perhaps you might like to expand on this?
I can get too much where I stay in on the computer, I spend too much time on-line. Computers are one of my main interests, not just forums, but games sometimes, researching stuff, browsing. & also tinkering, building & messing around with PC's. I have 3 PC's at the moment; boxes of computer stuff & piles of computer magazines. I find computers a comfort, if that makes sense? It is a kind of addiction. On balance I would be better to involve myself with getting out more; & involved with more people in the wider society. I don't think that the amount of focus & time I spend with computers & on-line is really that healthy. I think that this is all part of a longer term & wider behavioural pattern - of dropping out, that has played out ever since I was a kid.

There are two sides to all this - as there always is. Computers are a great tool & communication device - they have opened up a window into the World for me, they have enabled me to research subjects, & gain information that I otherwise would have had trouble to access, or not found.

On one hand I need to have balance & equanimity ;), I can get wildly thrown by things, so I need to focus on removing stress, & taking things easy.

But, the other side to this is that I play things safe; I stay with what is safe. I don't want to be a part of the wider society - I missed a lot of early school, then I didn't take part by living in the drug scene, then I stuck within recovery & MH circles - it is hard to put a lot of this into words. I suppose that a theme of abandonment has played out in my life - from day one, from certain people, & things. That has given me an attitude of not taking part, & sticking two fingers up to things - the patterns we weave.

I thank you for your praise about my comments. Not everyone would agree that i can be thoughtful and intelligent, especially when my emotional difficulties.
Academic intelligence is one thing, it's far from everything. There is also practical, artistic, emotional, & empathic intelligence, & I'd say 'spiritual' intelligence as well. There are many ways of applying & using different experience & knowledge. What a lot of us have been though on this site; you can't learn from text books, or in a class. From an experiential perspective, well, we are learned Professors.
 
Tortoise

Tortoise

Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2009
Messages
21
Location
London. UK
Hi Apotheosis

Thanks for the reply. Thorough, intelligent and thoughtful as always.

I'm not in the right frame of mind, at present, to give it the kind of response it deserves. If you can bear with me, I'll try to go over it in more detail at some stage in the next few days.

We do have one thing in common. Like you , I have several computers and games consoles! For a man of my middling years this is probably inexcusable, but I'm a great believer in softening the intensity of the depressed and panic-anxious periods I go through with some 'harmless' fun and games.

Your posts are a great help to me.

Best wishes
 
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Apotheosis

Guest
I'm not in the right frame of mind, at present, to give it the kind of response it deserves. If you can bear with me, I'll try to go over it in more detail at some stage in the next few days.
Thanks again for the compliments. No worries about replying, whenever, that is the benefit of an open forum; the conversations are open ended. There is no time scale to formulate a reply. I see a forum as one large ongoing open ended conversation anyway; I think that is what appeals.

We do have one thing in common. Like you , I have several computers and games consoles! For a man of my middling years this is probably inexcusable, but I'm a great believer in softening the intensity of the depressed and panic-anxious periods I go through with some 'harmless' fun and games.
I think that distraction techniques can be very effective. I find that a computer game can distract me very well sometimes from certain states. I have used consoles a lot in the past - but I just stick with PC's now.

I have been playing the early Medal of Honour games - last night I loaded up their newest one (I think) - it is Airborne - great graphics. Amazing how far graphics have come in such a short space of time. I have been reading that in 10 years graphics will be photo/film realistic. That will be interesting.

Your posts are a great help to me.
Thank you. I am glad that you can get something from them. All the best for you too.
 
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