(or why cats and SSRIs don't mix)
I thought I would do MC Jeff a small favour and tell you his story about how and why he was put on Paroxetine, what was it like for him living on it for over ten years and finally how he managed to stop.
So, nothing groundbreaking, really. Paroxetine and controversy surrounding it, has been digested hundreds of times by media. Even if you're not depressed, aware of SSRIs or don't know anyone who takes antidepressants, you probably know quite a bit about the drug that can make live very difficult at best and unbearable once you try to come off it.
MCJ tells me he's still going through the terminating process but he knows he's nearly there. So hopefully, by the time he hands me over his last article he'd have been successfully off it for at least a couple of weeks.
[Here's a brief disclaimer. During the tapering period, to minimize the withdrawal symptoms and to speed up the termination process, MCJ experimented with things he would not want any one to try or even think about. He tells me he took calculated risks and although not everything went as planned, he managed to use the small crisis to his advantage. Also, please note that MCJ uses a lot of bad language. But he never tries to offend anyone and mostly the language is well within context]
Anyway, enough of the intro...
" Fucking shitting brain zaps are really fucking unbearable and I just don't want to be experiencing the nasty little fuckers any more. I hope this is the worst fucking day and it gets better from tomorrow, cause fucking crazy fucking brain zaps are just fucking me up!
Thanks for putting my pathetic 'paroxetine tapering' diary on the 'forum thing' that you belong to. I know you think this might be helpful for some readers.
I personally have no fucking clue why would anyone want to read this crap. The reason I've been writing this is that I can monitor, day-by-day, whether I'm loosing it or just getting better. Some days there is no way determining if I feel right or not. So writing this up lets me have some kind of emotional reference point.
Fucking Paroxetine! Fucking Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitor! Doesn't it sound PROPER?! Particularly the SELECTIVE bit? Makes you feel it knows exactly what to do, where to go and how much (or how little) of stuff to give you. BOLLOCKS! DOES IT FUCK?!
Ten years ago I went to see my GP. I had some problems concentrating, nothing major. Retrospectively, I know that that is just what I'm like. That is just how I've alway been. But no, I thought, lets see what the doctor says. The shit-head spent a surprisingly long time with me, something like half and hour? Half an hour of NHS appointment is 12 years in human time! I was well surprised. He just kept asking things, almost like trying to steer me somewhere, or to something (oh no, paranoia!!! need to stop for a bit).
So he concluded that I was depressed and I needed medical treatment. Then he handed over a prescription for Paroxetine - 'a great new SSRI that is way better than anything ever developed before. Ever!'
And asked - 'any questions?'
Yes, I said. How long do I need to be on it? - GP - a few months at most...
What will change? - GP - you will feel better, although it will take time for the drug to build up in your system, so give it two weeks. But you might feel tired during those two weeks.
Is it addictive? Will I be able to come off it easily when I am better? - GP - no, not at all addictive. As soon as you're better, come back, we'll have another chat, and then we can take you off it.
Now, that sounded fine. But the question I should've asked, or rather, something I should have told him from the beginning was that I didn't really feel depressed ...
But what the hell, I though, here's something that might make me feel even better than I am now.
I slept for the first two weeks. And then the good things started happening. I FELT REALLY GOOD. Not euphoric good, but contented good.
This made me think that maybe I had been depressed? Maybe I needed this medication after all?
Oh, and some silly things stopped happening as well - all the tiny, minor phobia type things I used to have, just disappeared. None of these phobias were serious. In fact I only realised I used to have them AFTER I started the drug. Silly things like not liking darkness too much, not liking seeing dead rats. See? they are not even phobias, but I thought 'wow', I'm cured of 'these things'.
That's all I remember from ten years ago. In those first few months nothing was bothering me much. Or I did not feel if anything was bothering me much. Or maybe I stopped being capable of noticing if anything was bothering me much (noooooo, paranoia and suspicion again!).
OK, I'll stop now. I hope this is enough for your first article thing. Will have the second one ready sometime next week.
Talk to you later, mate.