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trying to function without meds

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might be off topic [Aug. 15th, 2008|11:38 am]
trying to function without meds

mustangholly
[mood |curiouscurious]

I have been off my antidepressants for 4 months. I feel great!!! I need to go on birth control and in the past the pill has made my depression worse. Does anyone have a suggestion for a depression friendly birth control?
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Float on [Jan. 12th, 2008|04:36 am]
trying to function without meds
bcrazybeautiful
[mood |accomplished]

There it was, my heart racing, my head spinning, and my eyes welling up with tears. Was it yet another panic attack? Or could it have been the onset of my severe depression. Still months later, I remain undiagnosed, even after seeing close to fifteen doctors. 
      To this day, I wonder what caused these intense and life threatening emotions? Was it when I left my friends and family over the summer to intern in the city...alone? Was it when I cheated on my boyfriend who I love deeply for some ass I worked with? Was it when I began to fear imperfection and its reality? ...when the fuck did I become so fucked up?
      In knowing my mind wasn't in the right place, I dropped out of college temporarily and sought help. Through seeking help, I tried medication upon medication. To the point where I just didn't want the help any longer. I was sick of it. In doing so, I overdosed. Finding myself in the hospital and later a psychiatric care unit, it was an experience never to be forgotten. The sight of my family crying and in complete disbelief at my attempt was enough to scare the shit out of me and make me realize what mistake I had made. In looking around at the hospital with the people I spent christmas eve with..alone..I realized how fortunate I am. 
    I had the best high school years any one could ever ask for. I was prom queen twice and had the group of friends I had always dreamed of; we were inseperable. I have a family and boyfriend that thinks the world of me. My brother, 21, loves me more than anything. I was accepted to a prestigious university, that I killed myself in high school to get into. I was captain of my cheerleading team. I was beautiful. 
    The people around me had nothing. No friends, family, or loved ones. No accomplishments or any evidence of self worth. 
     I looked around and realized, fuck, I am one lucky girl.
      From that day on, my life has changed for the better. Nothing is taken for granted. Not one sunrise or sunset. I am grateful for everyday spent here, and I thank god for granting me my life back. God must really love me, because I shouldn't still be here today. Life has a new zest to it. One that was invisible to me before. I'm glad I've finally come to see the light and I pray to god everyone else can too. 

Peace and Love
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New info on NYU's "Ransom Notes" perpetrators [Dec. 15th, 2007|11:34 am]
trying to function without meds
dkmnow
First, I'm afraid I'm being a tad "spammy" with this entry, and for that I apologize. But I think this tale needs to be told, post haste.

By now, you all know about NYU's Child Study Center, headed by Dr. Harold Koplewicz, and their repugnant "Ransom Notes" campaign. And most of you have probably signed ASAN's petition calling for the campaign to be scrapped:

http://www.petitiononline.com/ransom/petition.html

(Thanks Ari!)

Well, just a few hours ago, I was browsing the list of recent signatories, and this entry caught my eye:

486. [name omitted]: comment: I live in Raritan Twsp. NJ = My daughter almost died from Paxil. a drug Dr. Koplewicz helped promote off-label


Yeah, Paxil, and its lavish "off-label" uses -- one of my old pet peeves. So on a whim, I googled the string "Koplewicz + Paxil" ...and a moment later, "the other shoe dropped."

First, it turns out that the ad agency, BBDO, which produced the "Ransom Notes" campaign also represents both Pfizer and the notorious Glaxo Smith Kline, maker and aggressive pusher of Paxil. Shocker.

But among the top hits in the search came this seemingly unremarkable blog entry:

Many Angry At Childhood Mental Illness "Hostage" Ad Campaign
http://www.furiousseasons.com/archives/2007/12/many_angry_at_childhood_mental_illness_hostage_ad_campaign_1.html

The entry, like so many others, tells of the NYU debacle, but then drops this bombshell:

"As it turns out ... Koplewicz is one of the co-authors of the infamous Paxil Study 329 ...

"Study 329 basically asserted that Paxil beat placebo in treating depression in teens when, in fact, it did not. In addition, there were instances of suicidality in this study which Glaxo somehow managed to deep-six."


And from the Alliance for Human Research Protection website comes this repost:

http://www.ahrp.org/infomail/04/03/25.php

The Times quotes Dr. Harold Koplewicz, indicating only that he is the director of the NYU Child Study Center: "The fear I have about this warning is that many teenagers will not get the medicine because it will build resistance among their parents, and that is really a tragic outcome."

Dr. Koplewicz, not only is one of the staunchest promoters of psychotropic drugs for children, he was a co-investigator and co-author of a major Paxil study (329) in which he and the pillars of American child psychiatry claimed to have found that Paxil was "well tolerated and effective" for adolescents. The article has now been discredited by the FDA. Furthermore, an internal 1998 memo by the manufacturer of Paxil indicates that only the positive data from study 329 would be published, but the negative findings would not.

Readers trust the New York Times, believing that the experts selected by the Times for their views, are objective unless identified as having a financial interest in the product/ company or have taken a position. The Times failed to disclose any of the relevant background information that demonstrates a decidedly biased point of view. The Times article also failed to disclose the very substantial financial ties to the drug industry of either Dr. Koplewicz or the NYU Child Study Center ...


And so on.

Obviously, this connection needs to be investigated further. At the moment, I don't feel up to the job of deciding how relevant this information is to NYU's ongoing "Ransom Notes" disgrace. But I felt compelled to bring it to your attention.

Please spread the word.

[all linkage hereby pre-approved -- but it might be better to copy and paste, as my LJ account will be permanently deleted in two weeks]
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Two Years Out [Nov. 5th, 2007|11:05 am]
trying to function without meds

neitherday
[mood |accomplished]
[music |air purifier]

Today marks 2 years since I was released from Cahill 3, the last time I was on a locked psych unit.

For years, I was constantly in and out of hospitals. Throughout that time I was put on various medications: prozac, geodon, seroquel, zyprexa, depakote, lithium, ativan, klonopin, celexa, zoloft, and too many others to list here.

At times, the medications seemed like it was helping, but what it was really dong was preventing me from getting better. It wasn't until I stopped taking the medications that I started truly improving. It wasn't until I stopped taking the medication that I was able to stay out of the hospital.

Mental problems need a mental solution. Mental "illness" is not like diabetes or cancer. The speculation that mental "diseases" are biologically based is just that — speculation. There is no evidence to back it up, but the idea is treated as gospel. It is more religion than science.

Without the medications obscuring my real issues or slowing my brain down to the point that thinking was a labourious activity, I was able to directly address my problems and I was able to make myself better. I've been out of the hospital for 2 years and I'm sure that if I had continued to take their drugs, I wouldn't be able to say that.
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clonie free [Sep. 7th, 2007|11:16 pm]
trying to function without meds

indy_skies
well tonight's the night... for the first time in over a year i'm not going to take any clonzepam before going to bed. i've been tappering off for months now and for the last few days have been taking a crumb of a 0.5mg tablet. i have the next four days off work so i figure this is just as good a time as any to let myself go through the withdrawal. i'm hoping it will be minimal as i've been taking so little of the stuff lately... i just remember the last time i tried to stop taking clonazepam. almost ruined my trip to nyc. i'm guessing it will hit me around dinner time tomorrow... or maybe i won't notice it at all. not too worried about living without it as i've been having chest crushing panic attacks lately that i've been getting through without medical help. my mom has been bugging me to take more clonazepam, but i've been very stubborn in remaining unmedicated. does anybody have any tips for surviving benzo withdrawal? wish me luck.
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almost med free... [Aug. 17th, 2007|07:15 pm]
trying to function without meds

indy_skies
hi, i just joined this community and i thought i'd introduce myself and tell my story about life on psych meds. i was diagnosed with bipolar disorder when i was 23 (i am now 27) and have been on psych meds since diagnosis. a couple of months ago i was taking 300mg lamictal, 3mg risperdal, 40mg prozac and 2mg of klonopin daily. while on this medication i was trying to start my career in journalism after graduating from j-school last april. i was almost fired from my first job because of how dull and vacant i was. i had completely lost my creativity and i could barely write. my editor did an evaluation of me and everything he said i needed to improve on was a side effect of the meds. so i decided some of the meds had to go. i went off risperdal and lamictal right away and have been slowly cutting my dose of klonopin down to the point where i'm now taking 0.375mg per day. in a couple of weeks i hope to be taking none. i also moved to a new city and got a new job in journalism. i had made too many mistakes at the old newspaper and felt a clean start was needed to really get ahead in my career. well, the truth is i'm doing really well! my mental faculities have come back and i'm becoming the reporter i never was at my old job. i'm asking the right questions, making quick notes and writing creatively. my confidence has increased and i'm even getting compliments from my editor about my writing. sure, i sometimes pay the price, i don't sleep as well as i did while on meds and i'm prone to bending reality while i'm at home, alone in my apartment but all in all i'm more stable now than i ever was on meds. the meds changed who i was and that induced a lot of anxiety. i may be bipolar but i had never had an anxiety problem until i was put on so much medication. so right now i'm still taking the 40mgs of prozac. i decided that that would be the last drug i went off of because lets face it, depression is awful. once i'm completely off the klonopin i'll reduce my dose of prozac and eventually stop taking it as well. i'm excited by the thought of living my life completely med free. i'm aware that i could just be going through a good phase and things might get worse again but i don't think i'll ever go back on the meds. my job and happiness are just too important to me. anyway, i'm glad to be in this community. i think way too many people are on way too much medication and i think that disorders like bipolar are far too commonly diagnosed. i may have been the victim of "fad" diagnosing... at least i hope so.
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Need advice [Aug. 12th, 2007|08:53 am]
trying to function without meds

phoenixawakened
I went to the emergency room on Friday after experiencing a mild psychotic episode. This had followed several days of not sleeping. The psychiatric community has tried to tell me I'm bipolar, but I really don't think I am. What happens to me is more related to sleep deprivation and is spiritual in nature. I think the name for it is "sleep induced psychosis" since I'm never really manic during these times of sleep deprivation - instead, I'm more focused on spiritual pursuits. And I don't have depressive episodes either, which also suggests I'm not bipolar.

In any case, now I'm in a bit of a bind. Apparently, according to my fiance, they involuntarily committed me for 5 days (which really surprises me since they didn't even ask for my signature first, and I was very coherant most of the time). The good thing is that my fiance and I managed to get me out after one night. Because all I really needed is sleep, which is the last thing you get in a psychiatric ward. And those sleeping meds don't do much good for me - peace and quiet help the most.

Well, the problem I'm facing is that they are saying I MUST call this phone number on Monday, which will once again force me into psychiatric circles and more misdiagnoses and meds I don't wnat to take. I told them more than once my sister has developed tardive dyskinesia, and they really don't care.

I'm tired of this, I'm tired of being treated like a sub-human! I'm tired of being bullied into doing things. And I'm really quite furious about how easily they can commit a person involuntarily in the state where I live. The rules are more stringent in other places I have lived. And I'm also not happy they went through my purse to find my insurance information, even though I was perfectly coherant enough to do that for them. I'm quite upset about a lot of things here.

But now I need to decide how to stand up for my rights. If I don't call this number they say I'm REQUIRED to call on Monday, if I decide not to see one of their psychiatrists, what are the consequences? I guess since they involuntarily committed me, I may not have a choice.

I would be willing to see an alternative psychiatrist, one that emphasizes counseling and not drugs, but I simply won't take a drug long term like Abilify that has already had serious side effects in my own family. I'm taking it for now, but I don't intend to take it indefinitely.

So please advise me on your thoughts.

Phoenix
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(no subject) [Jul. 26th, 2007|09:28 am]
trying to function without meds

secondstozero
[mood |depresseddepressed]

Hi! I used to be on seroquel and couldn't get off of it, with the help of abilify I got off of it and am completely free of seroquel now. I'm so happy. My thoughts are though that I do have a diagnosis of schizophrenia or schizo-typical symptoms.I notice that I think more clearly when I take abilify. Is there any reason I should try to get off of abilify? Ive always been resistant to taking medications. I know that taking it might mean taking it for the rest of my life though, it doesnt seem like I'm getting off very soon. I don't know if it's causing any detrimental effects. All I've noticed is that it's harder to be spiritual- mediate, go into trances, lucid dreaming....which I'm really interested in. Also,I don't dream quite as much. Seroquel actually induced really intense dreams while abilify seems to block them. I never have nightmares. Seroquel wasn't helping it actually caused me worsened symptoms of psychosis. The abilify fixed everything pretty much...I joined because I have had this idea that I dont need anti-psychotics for a long time, and I just need a good reason not to take them.
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(no subject) [Jun. 21st, 2007|11:19 pm]
trying to function without meds

pittydirl
[mood |awake]
[music |That 70s Show]

Almost 5 months w/o my Zoloft. Not too shabby. I haven't had a particularly bad bout of depression in a while which is great! The husband and I have been having a hard time financially so I'm actually surprised I've been able to keep my spirits up. Hope everyone's doing well. :)
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Heresy! Oh noes! It'll be anarchy! [Jun. 15th, 2007|02:46 am]
trying to function without meds
dkmnow
People with schizophrenia not taking antipsychotics more likely to recover, states research

June 13, 2007
by Angela Hussain

People diagnosed with schizophrenia who are not on antipsychotics are more likely to experience recovery than those taking the medication, according to an American study.

Over 15 years, schizophrenia patients not on antipsychotics showed more periods of recovery than those taking antipsychotics, states a research paper in last month’s Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease.

Researchers reported that, after 10 years, 79% of patients on antipsychotics were psychotic, whereas 23% of those not on medication were psychotic. After 15 years, 65 per cent of patients on antipsychotics were psychotic, whereas only 28% of those not on medication were psychotic.

The study’s authors - Martin Harrow and Thomas Jobe of the department of psychiatry at the University of Illinois in Chicago – concluded that “not all schizophrenia patients need to use antipsychotic medications continuously throughout their lives.”

They stated that certain patient characteristics – such as a “favorable personality” – helped those not on medication to experience recovery.

The study was on 145 patients - 64 diagnosed with schizophrenia, and a control of 81 patients who had another psychotic diagnosis, such as paranoid disorder.

The research was part-funded by America’s National Institute of Mental Health.

----------

The study (abstract only, of course ... f*ckers):
Factors Involved in Outcome and Recovery in Schizophrenia Patients Not on Antipsychotic Medications:
A 15-Year Multifollow-Up Study; Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease.
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