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michael please

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michael please last won the day on August 25 2012

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About michael please

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  • Birthday 12/19/1972

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  1. Currently switching from 150 Effexor to 90 Cymbalta. It's taken about five weeks, bit the Cymbalta seems to be starting to work. Barely down on the Effexor and taking 112.5mg there still.
  2. Effexor for me was just starting to fade in effectiveness for me and I was faced with the choice of either increasing Effexor dose or transitioning to Cymbalta. Two Effexor side-effects I found over the years to be intolerable. 1) Created some kind of mental physical block to getting things done, like monstrous procrastination that prevented me from getting to work on very important things that had stacked up over years. 2) Sexual side-effects. For me that was really rough. Reading that Cymbalta had generally less side effects in those areas, I decided to make the leap. **** it at this point, at can't be that much worse I thougt (of course it always can), but I thought it worth the risk. I'm a few days into feeling like I made the right decision. I hope it continues. I also have been helped, at the same time, in a serious way by Gary Van Warmerdam's Pathway to Happiness Site. Binge listened to a few of his podcasts and I haven't been the same since. A miracle for me.
  3. In looking for meditative or soothing podcasts that could distract me from the unrelenting psychic pain, I found Gary Van Warmerdam's podcast on being Not Good Enough. That was the first one I listened to and it began (a week ago) a process of listening to his podcasts that has already been a powerful, life changing experience. I can't say enough about it.
  4. I'm currently in the process of switching from Effexor (15 yrs) to Cymbalta. I think it must totally depend on the severity level of endemic depression and how long it takes an SNRI to start taking noticeable effect for depression (assuming its similar for both). I have been in extreme anxiety and depression that is constantly desperately horrendously miserable in the past when not on Effexor (tried getting off a few times). From zero, it has taken me 8 weeks to start noticing anti-depressant effect, the whole time waiting an absolute living hell. In switching to Cymbalta, at first I went with the fastest possible cross-taper schedule, hoping for the best. That was a disaster (started 150 Effexor, transition to 60 Cymbalta) one week at 75mg Effexor and the next 0mg Effexor. Lost it and started getting very depressed, so went back up to full dose Effexor + (225mg) while continuing the 60mg Cymbalta. Then went 90mg Cymbalta while at 150mg Effexor and then quickly to 90 Cymbalta, 112.5 Effexor. Finally I've been feeling much less depressed over the past couple days. Was "that" close to calling it quits on Cymbalta but glad I've pushed through. Plan to stay on 90 Cymbalta for the time being while I slowly taper off of the Effexor and go from there.
  5. I've been off and on these forums for about 10 years. Finally found a podcast that has made a difference. Are we allowed to like to sites here? I forget.
  6. jkc, I've been in the state you are in and have tried different combinations of meds. Lexapro and Wellbutrin didn't work for me at all. I tried Effexor (virtually the same as Prisiq) in combination with Lamictal, which seemed to help a little. Then my psychiatrist suggested I try Adderall, which is sometimes used to "jumpstart" the antidepressants. That combination has worked great for me and now I'm slowly weaning off the Adderall. You have to be careful that you don't end up in a manic state, which is a definite possibility with dopimanergic meds. As far as cost, Effexor has been available in generic form and is MUCH less expensive than Pristiq. I tried Pristiq and it didn't work any better. The other two, Lamictal and Adderall are both available in generic. If you have a Costco within driving distance, the pharmacy there has prices that are often WAY lower than other pharmacies and you don't have to be a Costco member to user their pharmacy.
  7. I'm taking 225mg of Effexor and it seems to be working for the most part.
  8. What are the biggest challenges in starting life back up after recovering from a long and deep, debilitating depression? I'm a youthful 40 yo guy, but am starting from having been unemployed for almost a year and living with my father and step-mother for four months. I'm not out of the depression yet, still tweaking medications, but moving in the right direction. My previous career(s) have probably contributed to my depression, so I'm looking at starting from "scratch". Of course there are many factors that could impact my future, and the possibility of relapse is always a concern, but I'm just looking for general advice on what pitfalls to look out for. The fact that I'm even thinking about a possible future is a real improvement over recent months. I'm in the process of applying for SSDI/SSI as a backstop in case I can't turn the corner, but I know how capable I can be when the brain signaling is working well. Any advice is appreciated.
  9. Maybe with mild to moderate depressions, there can be gender specific issues that contribute to depression, but with severe depression my feeling is that all human brains use the same neurotransmitters and a significant deficit will debilitate men and women with equal devastating effect.
  10. Yes, sorry Rahul, it's 2mg not 20 of the Klonopin. Seabeach, that's exactly what I'm hoping for, room to recover and figure out the right med situation and get stabilized. Then I can hopefully move forward. I had given up and felt like I was just crash landing at my Dad's, but I continue to have hope that I'll get the right med combo and the rare times that I have felt normal have reminded me that life can be good. The prospect of trying new med combinations gives me a glimmer of hope. Since the Adderall worked initially, my doctor just started me on 25mg twice a day. Maybe I've had undiagnosed ADD. It will be great for everyone when genetic tests are available that can point to a diagnosis and likely drug combo that will work.
  11. I hope you're all doing well. I'm continuing to try different combinations of meds. I'm currently taking 30mg Lexapro, 100mg Lamictal, 20mg Klonopin, 20mg Adderall. I'm meeting with my pdoc tomorrow and will talk about Adderall dose, possibly switching Lexapro to Effexor (which worked in the past), maybe tapering from Klonopin. I'm just having real difficulties and anxiety taking logistical actions on my own behalf. I'll do all kinds of taks for others knowing that I'm depending on them to keep me out of a hospital, which would not necessarily help. In the rare times I feel 'normal', like the first time I tried Adderall, I felt like everything was working well and I was motivated, focused, calm... but it only lasted the one time. I think we know what we are capable of with proper neurotransmitter and receptor functioning. It is so frustrating to know what is possible, but that it hinges on something we can't see and isn't fully understood. Pray for advancements in research that will benefit us relatively soon. I'm in the process of moving out of my apartment and into my Dad's house. It can be so frustrating living with him often times because he lives largely in his own world in an asperger's type fashion. At least his wife is sympathetic and good to talk to. No job and not sure what I'm going to do although the irony is that I would (will) be motivated to take on life, job, relationship, socializing when my brain chemistry is balanced. I attempt to do it anyway, but there is such trepidation that it is all I can do to move forward and keep myself physically well.
  12. I have the same problem most people posting on this thread have. I've found myself stuck in bed not being able to do anything but stay under the covers, try to get into a more comfortable position, put on some background streaming audio (BBC World Service). I am literally trapped in by bed by something extremely horrible and terrifying to me: my so-called "life". I just keep telling myself with less and less effect that if I just get some more sleep, "good" sleep, I'll wake up suddenly energetic and ready to take on the world. Maybe I have sleep apnea, I tell myself, so I roll the pillow under my neck so there's less chance of me stopping myself breathing if, in fact, I have any sleep apnea. Once I get up, if I get up, I can only do things if directed or suggested by others for THEIR benefit. It does actually help me to accomplish something, even if it is for someone else rather than just staring at the ceiling or trying, with ever decreasing success to relieve my boredom/anxiety. My AD (Lexapro) is actually working somewhat, I think, but it hasn't fixed any of my life situation which, as I said above, is absolutely terrifying for me to think about, so I've stayed in this corner, retreating from life, withering and dithering away. I'm an adult without a job, living with my Dad (for about a month now), and have had to struggle to find things to do or build any structure whatsoever into my life. A healthy person in my position would be looking for a job and socializing. That is where I want to be. It's not that I want to do nothing, I want to have the motivation to take action on my own behalf. I know now that what's stopping me is the paralyzing horror I feel when I think about my life, which has prevented me from taking almost any measures on my own behalf. It's the sheer horror of thinking about my "pathetic" life that keeps me from sitting down and working on anything for myself. I think I have an answer, though. First, I've asked my Dad and stepmom to think of one thing every day that they need from the grocery store. I'll then have a reason to get out of bed, walk the dog to the store, get item, and come back. Just having that to do will create a reason for me to get out of bed in the morning. Then there are the random yard work and chores to do once I'm up. But these are still things on others' behalf. To start facing my life, I'm going to get some chocolate and give myself a piece for every 15 minutes of real work on my own behalf. That can be planning, reading mail, taking care of bills, arranging to vacate my apartment, dealing with health insurance, even looking on craigslist for part time work. All of the things that I need to do to re-establish myself as an independent person. 15 minutes of facing the horrendous wind and fury, then a piece of chocolate. I'm going to try it tomorrow.
  13. Well, it's as if I've blown a fuse since losing my job in early October and just given up on life. I had pushed as hard as possible through the pain of major depression since June to get things going, getting everything in order and getting a good job. When I couldn't get out of bed for my job and lost it, I just begged my way into my dad and stepmom's house because I was barely able to feed myself. I haven't taken care of ANY paperwork/mail since losing my job and I'm finally, tomorrow going get through it with help of my stepmom. Why do I need help? I've been scared s***less to face what looks like a hopeless life. Unless there's a dramatic breakthrough soon, I'll be staying here for a while, which is pretty pathetic and humiliating for a guy who's turning 40 next month. My excuse, when anyone asks is that I'm "taking a break". That'll work for maybe another month. At least I won't be out on the street, where I would definitely not make it and I'm finally breaking through the fear and looking at reality which is not going to be pretty, but burying my head in the sand is making things worse. I've just been hoping for a medication miracle (after which point, I would hope to suddenly burst out with full energy for life) without taking enough action for myself. Maybe I have to try a different medication. I have an appointment with the psychiatrist on the 29th. The only thing I've done consistently for the past few days is brush my teeth and floss at night. Oh, that and come here. I got up the one day at 7:00am and will try to do that again tomorrow since the house guests left today. I'm sure many can relate, but it really sucks when you're living with a parent as an adult and they're regularly upset that you're not able to manage an independent life properly. Just five minutes ago, he said, "Organize your papers so your stepmom can help. Just do something!" in a p***** off tone. I did it, which was a good idea, I just wish he wouldn't be so angry. Bottom line is I'm trapped, totally dependent on people who understandably are frustrated with me. I have to give up on thinking of myself in terms of my old friends and family. Who knows, maybe I'll get out of this depression and find my way back to an existence without fear.
  14. One of the most frustrating things about the depression I'm in is that for most of the day, I'm in a passive state, where I can react to people and come across as if I'm the most well adjusted person in the world, but on my own, my sense of reality is that most everyone else in the world is "super competent" compared to me. It's hard to fathom how people just keep going and take care of all of the things that they need to do to keep their lives going. It's only toward the evening that I start to feel a sense of improvement, but it's so temporary and I know that when I get up in the morning, I'm going to feel totally lost again. Speaking of getting up in the morning, since my parents have had company over since yesterday afternoon, this morning, I didn't "get the **** up" at 7:00am as planned and finally got up at about 11:00am, then helped my Dad with some errands and now am back alone. Btw, he is just getting more and more frustrated that I don't seem to want do anything but lay around even though he knows I'm depressed. I started working on a music piece when he left, but my dulled and slowed senses make EVERYTHING harder and seem mostly useless when I "should" be taking care of my business. Something that has been difficult, especially with depression is adapting to any kind of change. The though of doing something "else" is very anxiety producing. I just took my second Rx'ed Klonopin for the day, so that is helping me feel a bit more relaxed. Just the routine change with the guests has been a double edge sword. On the one hand, I know it's good to socialize and they are pretty friendly people, but not only is my sleep schedule is thrown off because this morning I was afraid to wake them up early on their vacation (nice excuse), but here are two more "super competent" people with all kinds of energy which I compare myself to. I know this is the depression, because I've felt this before, but I'm "afraid" to do things to help myself where "non-depressed" people seem to have an endless reserve of effortless energy and drive to just take care of everything. Does anyone else feel like that? I'm "afraid" to do anything but distract myself with sleep or internet radio. I can do things for others, almost anything when asked, but can't bring myself to take care of things for myself. As time goes by, I feel like I'm just rolling down a hill off a cliff. If I wasn't depressed, I know I could take energetic action to "right" my situation, but it doesn't look like it's going to happen. That's also the depression talking, but it wont' shut up. I'm extremely dependent on my Dad and stepmom at the moment and unless there's some kind of cash windfall, it's going to just get tougher. I helped them figure out that they need to get SEO (Search Engine Optimization) for their business (e.g. Yelp, Google) so that could help, but the reality is that everything in my life depends on me getting out of depression, but the fight has been going on for too long and the feeling of giving up and impending doom are there in a major way. Depression talking again. Wonderful. I think the guests are leaving tomorrow and I'm going to "get the **** up" at 7:00am tomorrow morning whatever they think. It's just going to be very mild coffee tomorrow so I can take an afternoon nap if I have to. If I get out of this mess, it will be a true miracle. When not depressed, nothing is that big of a deal that it can't be handled in some way. When depressed, everything is a big deal that can only be handled with great unsustainable effort and pain. Your replies have been great and it's really good to hear from people that are facing similar situations. I hope I'm not bringing people down, but letting others know who may be in similar situations that they're not alone. Also, hearing from people with these problems that have managed to find a way out is inspirational. Thanks again for reading. Michael
  15. Wow, the giving up on life when you have fought in the past to salvage it is a real bad place, which I am in and out of at the moment. You didn't mention if you have started any or are on any anti-depressant medication. I'm currently taking a mood-stabilizer and Lexapro (30mg) and hoping that that will "kick in" relatively shortly to help pull me out of the feeling up hopelessness/helplessness. I think it's starting to work, but I'm still pretty stuck at the moment. I'm trying different strategies to regulate my life at the same time. Nothing to lose by trying new things or facing fears (other than the energy it takes to overcome the momentary terror of "getting up off the floor". It is painful, but won't hurt you, no matter how much it seems it will. **** it, and face the pain of making a plan, then facing the pain of doing just the first 30 minutes of part one. Sorry about this somewhat disjointed post, but I really understand where you are and want to help you (and myself). Michael
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