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fortress_of_solitude

Anyone On Remeron And Cymbalta?

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Hi guys,

Is anyone on both Remeron and Cymbalta? My psychiatrist added Cymbalta in today as the Remeron doesn't seem to be doing a lot for me. I am feeling very low/empty and things don't seem that real half the time. I have a lot of suicidal thoughts and hopelessness about the future.

I've been on Remeron since February and it worked okay ish for a while (got quite irritable on it :rolleyes: ) and in July things went downhill and started feeling very suicidal. We stopped the Remeron and tried Celexa and then Trazodone. Both caused severe anxiety/panic attacks so we went back to Remeron. I've also tried Prozac this year (in January) and that also caused severe anxiety/agitation. Remeron is the only one that doesn't make me want to claw my skin off :dontgetit: .

If anyone has any experience of these two together it would be nice to hear from you. If not, I'll post here anyway with my experience in case anyone else is interested in this combo...

PS- its weird to use the trade names for these drugs as in the UK we only use generic names- I keep having to go back to the Meds Page to check I'm using the right words!!

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I just started taking Cymbalta about a month ago and I have not had a good experience. However, it is the only drug I'm taking currently. The only thing it does for me is make me sleepy. All. The. Time.

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I have been on Remeron for about 10 months now and for the first 4 months I was on Cymbalta too, worked well for a while but my psychiatrist replaced it with other meds when my depression came back.

Remeron is great, its certainly not enough for my depression so I take it along with other meds but will definitely stay on it because it kills my insomnia, I haven't taken any Ambien since I started Remeron.

I hope the combo works for you, i'm optimistic about it because I too never experienced any relief on SSRIs and I tried all of them except for Prozac but SNRIs and other classes like Remeron have always worked for me.

Good luck and keep us posted.

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Hi, wish I could help but I am feeling pretty lost myself at the moment. I am on 45mg of Remeron (Mirtazapine in Uk) and apart from improved sleep have not had a lift out of the depression. Have been on it long enough now to know if it could make a difference but unfortunately it hasn't. :verysad3:. .

Seen my psychiatrist about it and unfortunately he refused to prescribe me any other med to combine with the Remeron. Got really upset and walked out on him so now he doesn't want to see me anymore and referred me to another psychiatrist - the waiting game continues! It is so frustrating and I am desperate for respite!!

Are there any people out there you have had good experiences with whatever Remeron and ? combo. I am just getting really desperate to get out of the hellhole. I know that I can't just rely on the meds and I try my best with meditation, exercise etc... but with feeling this low it is getting harder and harder...

Any advice would be appreciated and like you Fortress... I have had bad side effects with some of the other meds i.e. Effexor, Cipralex etc.. Have you tried with the Cymbalta yet and if yes how are you getting on? Maybe silly question as you only posted yesterday.

With the Remeron the fatigue was bad in the beginning but now ok (just eating a bit too much for my liking). Tamer what other meds are you taking alongside the Remeron?? I, too feel the Remeron alone is just not helping with the depression (only helping with sleep and not always) so is there any point staying on it?

Thanks for any input!

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With the Remeron the fatigue was bad in the beginning but now ok (just eating a bit too much for my liking). Tamer what other meds are you taking alongside the Remeron?? I, too feel the Remeron alone is just not helping with the depression (only helping with sleep and not always) so is there any point staying on it?

Thanks for any input!

maybe it's a good thing your psychiatrist referred you to another doctor, now you can get a second opinion. maybe you should stay on Remeron until you see the new psychiatrist ? because sometimes it's not that you need to switch to a different antidepressants but you simply need to add another one especially if your depression is the treatment-resistant type, of course your psychiatrist should be the one to decide.

if you don't think it's helping you at all neither with depression nor Insomnia then obviously the benefits don't outweigh the risks ( Remeron has been linked to diabetes in patients with family history of this disease, probably because of the weight gain it causes ).

Currently I take.. Remeron 30 mg, Valdoxan 25 ( which replaced Cymbalta ) Ritalin 60 mg and I also took seroquel XR for few months when my depression hit rock bottom and I had suicidal thoughts 24/7 but i'm off of it now.

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Thanks for your replies.

I haven't taken any yet. My psychiatrist (who I see privately as was having to wait too long on the NHS) wanted me on both Remeron and Cymbalta so he faxed a letter to my GP asking them to start prescribing the Cymbalta as well. But when I went to the GP the following day they refused to prescribe it saying it had to be prescribed and monitored by the psychiatrist.

I've had to wait until today when I can speak to my Psychiatrist's secretary to find out what to do next. He only works privately on Weds/Thurs so I will probably have to wait until then to see him and get the prescription- which is about a 3 hour round trip for me.

I will let you guys know what happens if/when I get to actually take it.

I am tired of having to fight to get any help.

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Hi,

I've been on This combination for a few years. Cymbalta 30mg and remeron 15 mg. They were a life saver for me when I was at my worst. It works great for me. I have no issues with these 2 together. Let me know if you have any other questions.

I'm at the point now where i am weaning down off the remeron. I was on 30mg and now at 15mg. I plan on staying at 15 mg for a while.

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Okay, so I have finally got my hands on some Cymbalta after several weeks of being bounced from GP-Psychiatrist.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Caution boring rant ...

I can't believe how hard its been just to sort out my medication...The GP's refused to prescribe it. I spoke my private psychiatrist who said he had faxed another letter through to the GP so to go back to them. They had no record of the second letter and still refused. I then heard back from the NHS psychiatry team who I have been waiting to see- I had gone privately to get advice/help as knew I would be waiting a while to see someone on the NHS. They said I had had an appointment with the NHS psychiatrist several days previously and had sent a letter... which I hadn't received because they had sent it to the wrong address. I was then under the impression I would be getting another appointment through quite quickly but when I got an appointment through a week later it was for 18 October. I gave up and rang the private psychiatrist again and he kindly posted me a prescription to cover me until I saw the NHS psychiatrist.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Anyway, I've got 30 mg tablets so will start on them tomorrow morning and can go up to 60 mg in a week or too- see how the side effects pan out.

Michihope, I hope things are better for you.

Edited by fortress_of_solitude

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I just jumped back on cymbalta 4 days ago. I was on it from 2007-2009. I was on remeron for about a year after that and recently. I'm thinking about adding some remeron to the cymbalta. Mainly to help with the hardcore insomnia cymbalta gives me.

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Hi everybody. Thanks for your input - does help to not feel alone with the struggle of meds and the depression which can feel so relentless and cruel...

Been to see new psychiatrist today - feel totally drained now. It was so many questions - but although I miss the compassion from most of the mental health professionals at least it felt like he showed some interest. He did say it was a treatment resistant depression (no news here for me after well over 2 years struggling and fighting for survival) and that we needed to combine the meds.

He did mention combining the Remeron (Mirtazapine in the UK) with the Cymbalta but he wants to hold off prescribing before a case conference which is about my case next Wednesday. God, I wish I'd be a fly on the wall on that day - but maybe not - may be too depressing! So I will be seeing him again next Friday where he will let me know what's been decided.

In some ways I guess its good to have other psychiatrists input on my case but its still waiting and trying to hang in there as I still feel really really bad and have to fight off the suicidal feelings. I really empathise for you as well fortress as its so hard to fight and wait esp when you feel so low and you really don't have the energy for fighting and waiting anymore. I do hope the Cymbalta works out ok for you. Keep me informed how you are getting on.... I may be on the same combo soon, too? I know I need something to get me out of this hellhole. Just worried about the side effects concerning the Cymbalta. Like you fortress Mirtazapine is the first med where I don't crawl out of my skin with bad anxiety. But then its just not helping with the depression.

I tried Effexor before and that had terrible side effects in terms of anxiety and insomnia. At least I am sleeping okish at the moment and I could do without the insomnia as sleep is my only time at the moment where I can get a bit of respite...

I guess also feeling really low as a friend of mine who I actually met on this site has killed herself. We ended up emailing each other nearly every day for nearly one year and it was great support for both of us. Unfortunately the relentlessness of the depression and the hopelessness with it all just got too much! Its so sad and I miss her so.

But I need to survive this! Have a 13 year old daughter, too who needs her mum. Lets just hope something will help. Its good to hear a positive from Moonwitch - thank you. It helped to hear that you find that combo a real help. Did you go on both meds straight away or did you first try with the Remeron and then Cymbalta or the other way round? Anyway, that's enough for me for today. Thanks for any posts in advance!

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I am on Cymbalta and Remeron.I am also on seroquel and lorazepam.I am diagnosed as bipolar.The cymbalta has helped but I feel like it`s starting (or has been) pooping out on me as I have not been feeling well lately.I am currently on 120 of cymbalta.My pdoc prescribed the remeron for my anxiety.I take it at bedtime.It has been helpful to me for that.A bit of advice(and this is not to scare you) never let your cymbalta prescription run out.The withdrawal symtoms can be hellish.Good luck to you!

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Thanks for the replies :thumbs-up:

Today is my 5th day on Cymbalta. I'm just taking 30 mg and so far there's been a definite improvement from last week. In the last couple of days I've started being more interested in doing things, I feel like some of the heavy weight that's been pressing down on me has eased up. My limbs don't feel as heavy- I've noticed that its easier to walk!! I've been able to focus on doing jobs round the house/reading/cooking etc.

Side effects wise... I have a bit of a headache but nothing bothersome. I felt sick the first 2 days but that's passed. I feel a bit jittery but not horribly anxious/agitated like I did on Prozac/Celexa. I'm also taking 45 mg Remeron at night and 150 mg Lyrica twice a day so they are dampening down the anxiety. I'm sleeping less at night which is good for me as I was sleeping 10-12 hours- now its 7-8.

I saw my psychiatrist today (NHS one) and he said to stay on 30 mg for now and see how it goes.

Michihope

I'm sorry you're having to wait for the case conference- I know how frustrating it is to be waiting to get help- its agonising. I hope that you are managing to hold on. Just focus on the fact that it is good they are discussing your case, it means they are really trying to find the best treatment to help you. I hope that whatever they give you helps- there is something out there for everyone, there are so many stories on this site of people recovering once they've got the right meds for them. I know its a worry about the side effects, but by combining meds it can help ease them such as using mirtazapine to ease any anxiety/insomnia from more stimulating meds.

I am so sorry to hear about your friend :console:. Depression is a brutal and devastating illness, not everyone survives it. I am glad that you have a daughter to live for. In my darkest times I lived for my family, not myself- it was the thought of hurting them that stopped me. You just need to cling to that feeling until the storm passes and you get some medication to ease the pain.

LadyMozzer

I am sorry you are not doing so well, I hope you can get to see you pdoc and get some help/change of meds. I hate 'poop outs'- you think everything is going fine and then bam it all goes downhill again, its very frustrating. I will take your advice and make sure I don't let my meds run out! Also- love Morrissey too :yay:

Maintainin

How are you finding th Cymbalta- I hope its working for you again. Have you added in any Remeron? I hope the insomnia isn't too horrendous.

Take care,

Fortress xx

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Thank you Fortress for your insightful and compassionate input! It really helps to hear how other people are getting on and sharing their story. I hope that the Cymbalta is working out for you and continues in helping you ease that mental pain I wish no one would have to suffer!

Like you know I am still hanging in there waiting! I am also trying not to take any diazepam at the moment as I have been taking tranquilizers every single day since my friends suicide over one month ago. I have been taking 5 to 10mg diazepam daily and worry that it is making the depression worse - could that be?

But on the other hand taking the diazepam has been my only little bit of relief when the agonizing mental pain is just getting too much as the 45mg of mirtazapine just doesn't seem to be helping at all in relieving the depression.

I am wondering about this Lyrica you wrote about fortress. I have never heard about it. Does it help with anxiety? I am just getting worried now about my frequent use of diazepam as I don't want to get addicted to it (probably already am a bit as the days are very very hard without it).

I just wish it wouldn't feel so long all this waiting and not knowing! I am forcing myself to get out to try and help myself as I know I can't just rely on the meds - went to a Pilates class in the gym today but nearly had a panic attic during it. It was so hard to keep going. I am also trying with meditation and keeping myself as distracted as I can. But living can just feel so incredible hard and I need to keep on living...

Let's hope there is hope for everyone and we can all find something to ease and end this mental pain and suffering. I wish there would be more research into mental health and the brain. It seems such an inaccurate science - dealing with mental health.

I also feel that wanna be mental health practitioners and psychiatrist should be interviewed by a panel of people who have lived through the suffering of mental ill-health. I just feel there is far too little compassion in dealing with people who are suffering like hell and sometimes not survive this kind of hell!

I also wish there would be compassionate hospital places for people on the NHS or wherever you live where people who have had long term or complex mental health issues would get the respectful, compassionate and multidisciplinary treatment they deserve. I so often don't know how to function anymore and I can't even make the smallest decision i.e. what's for dinner... and I find it very hard to be around my family in that bad state. Just want to be in a caring hospital environment where I have time to get well again. But in Britain there only seems to be the Priory providing that service which seems to be only for people who can afford it as its private. I just don't get it. I don't want to sound ungrateful but I think mental health services could be so much better. Maybe this way the mental suffering wouldn't drag out to become sooo unbearable and some suicides could be prevented. I have spent one week on a NHS psychiatric ward around last Easter time and I can't even describe how awful it was! No one ever asked me how I was and there was no stimulation or any real care!! I discharged myself after one week as I felt I was turning into a vegetable.... Anyway, this is my rant for the day.

The waiting continues. Looking forward to hearing how people get on. Thanks

Michi x

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Its been a week and so far so good. I feel lighter and have interest in the world around me. Still feel a bit weird at nights- mood lower and more anxious- but that ties in with the fact I am not working right now so struggling to fill my day, by evenings I've run out of things to do and feeling bored!

I went to the supermarket yesterday and instead of feeling like crying, wanting to come home and staring at the cheese thinking "I don't care I just want to die", I was thinking "ooo marscapone that'll be nice in the lasagne, oh and also in hot chocolate, mmm." So that's definitely a big improvement!

MichiHope

I wonder if you've heard about your case conference- have you managed to get some new medication. I am glad you are here with us on DF- it has been a great source of support for me this year.

Some people do find that diazepam makes their depression worse. 5-10 mg is a middle ish dose so it would be worth trying to take a bit less but if you are really struggling and it is stopping you from feeling suicidal/acting on suicidal thoughts then take some. Once you get on some new medication hopefully the 'mental anguish' will ease and you'll be able to cut down more easily.

Lyrica (pregabalin in UK) is an epilepsy medication that is also licensed for generalised anxiety disorder here in the UK (but not the US). It has worked great for my anxiety. It is supposed to be much less 'addictive' that the benzodiazapines such as diazepam. However, it is expensive so GP's are reluctant to prescribe it. If you have bad anxiety then I would definitely suggest asking for it. It works quickly (within half an hour) and last for ~12-24 hours, so you usually take it twice a day. It made me feel drunk for the first few days- couldn't walk in a straight line, but I didn't care as I felt very calm and content. I still get anxiety every so often but it has made it much less severe and more manageable.

Well done for going to the pilates class- I know how hard it is to do that when you feel so bad. I am trying to go to yoga once a week. I am sure that it is good for us even if we don't really feel like it is right now!

I agree with you about wanting better research into mental health and medication- it is definitely an inexact science! Mental health services in the UK could definitely be improved. The problem is they just don't get enough funding from the NHS. Psychiatry as a specialty doesn't attract that many doctors and many of those it does attract only want to do it as it has better working hours compared to other specialties. This leaves us with fewer doctors to cover all the patients and most of those aren't doing it to actually help people. Saying that there are lots who do care, it just feels like they are few and far between. Having them be interviewed by a panel of people who have mental health problems is a great idea!!

Take care

Fortress xx

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Hi Fortress and everyone out there reading this!

I just cried with relief when I read your comment fortress because I felt understood and heard! Thank you so much also for the advice concerning the diazepam and Lyrica. I might ask tomorrow when I see psychiatrist again as I do want to come off the diazepam when I can manage it. I guess it just depends what he suggests in terms of meds etc. I just feel so so so alone with my daily survival struggle at the moment - I feel people around me just get on with their lives and LIVE! Whereas I am hanging in there by a bare thread where taking a shower or the simplest tasks (like buying cheese etc.) seem like an enormous burden and huge mountain to climb.

I can also relate to the "cheese story" in terms of how different emotions can be when ill compared to when well or even just better. Unfortunately having been well seems like a distant memory for me at the moment as this depression has been relentless and gone on for two years plus with very little respite - I just feel so disconnected and detached from life and people and it hurts like hell. This morning forced myself to go to a half an hour step class in the gym (as exercise is supposed to help with depression) but there was so much enthusiasm in that class together with the "motivating" music that instead of lifting me I just felt like this failure who just can't enjoy anything in life anymore. I just want to reconnect with life so I try to engage with meeting with friends and doing my meditation and exercise when I can.... but the depression feels so utterly crushing and severe that I sometimes just don't know how to survive anymore...

It sounds like you are getting on ok (ish) with the Cymbalta - I really do hope it continues to work well for you, the side effects ease and you are continuing to feel even better and more stable (I know you haven't been on it for very long).

I am getting quite anxious to see what they have decided in the case conference yesterday. Well, will find out tomorrow but your story with the Cymbalta does give me hope and wants me to try it as well. But than there is also the knowledge that everyone can respond differently to meds and what if it doesn't work? My friend Suzanne who committed suicide not long ago was on the Mirtazapine and Cymbalta combo and it hasn't worked out for her (otherwise she'd be alive now - it's just so desperately sad!!).

So I worry if I am another hopeless case where meds just don't work! I am so scared, so scared not to survive this depression. Well, after my half an hour step experience from hell I cycled home and decided to take some tranquilizers as the mental anguish and terror felt too intense. I wish I would have had the blessing of those feel good exercise endorphins which just seem to elude me... :verysad3:

There has got to be something out there to help hasn't there?! I am even thinking as a last resort to leave the UK, leave my family and move back to Germany (where I come from)for a certain time and get into one of the psychosomatic hospitals. Some of them are really good and it would give me time out and maybe more strategies to heal/recover, but I just don't know. It's such a big step - I would have to leave my 13 year old daughter and my husband and first pay in insurance in Germany to get the chance to go.. I guess I am just clasping on straws and any hope there could be.

I am reading the Mindful way through Depression at the moment - its very good but I just feel too severely depressed to engage in anything much at the moment. What do I do? Guess just have to keep hanging in there and hoping that some medication will help me to lift me at least out of the worst of the abyss. :help:

I think we just need that stable platform from where it is easier to engage, dare I say enjoy some things and get back involved with life again. I just hope it will happen!

I also feel so lost - I know there is so much in the house I could potentially do - decluttering would be one such thing but I have no drive, no motivation, no interest. All I feel I can do at the moment is to survive somehow.

Keep us posted how you fortress and everyone gets on in their journey to hopeful recovery where life is worth living again! :bestwishes: and always good to hear from you!!

Michi xx

Edited by MichiHope

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Thanks for those links Michi Hope. I've added them as a bookmark. The self-compassion one looks really good- its something I definitely need.

Had a bit of an anxiety attack last night- suddenly overwhelmed with fear of the future- whether I can handle things, feeling like I have nothing to look forward to as everything seems terrifying. I've had quite a few of these attacks this year so I am kind of getting used to them. I've been trying to learn some mindfulness to help train myself to stop thinking too much when they start as thinking about anything just makes the anxiety much worse. Its working as I have managed to calm down enough to fall asleep and stay asleep- they used to keep me up all night (my record is about 6 hours of constant anxiety...). I only get them when I am going to bed- I am fine up until I turn the light out and then it just rears its ugly head- I've never been scared of the dark or had worries about sleep before so I don't know why its happening then. Cymbalta is supposed to be good for anxiety so I hope in the long term it will get better! Other than last night though my mood is still much better- I have more physical and mental energy!

Michihope

Let us know what the psychiatrists decided- I am interested to see what they said. I hope that it is something you are happy with. I am glad that being here is helping- I know where you are coming from with feeling relieved that you are not alone and that you are understood- its how I feel being here on DF and also with my therapist who I've been seeing this year. I'm seeing her privately and can barely afford it but seeing as I'm not spending money on much else it is probably worth it!

I am sorry that the mirtaapine/cymbalta combination didn't help your friend. I guess each of us are different and respond differently to medication- it can be an agonising trial and error process. Its finding the strength to hang in there are hope it works.

Well done for going to the gym!! The motivating music and happy cheery people sound dreadful though!! It would have made me feel more depressed too. There's nothing worse than bouncy enthusiastic people when you are in the depth of despair. Exercise is good for depression but I think when you are deeply depressed you don't feel the rewards straight away- I think we are either numb to the endorphins or we are not producing endorphins at all. Don't push yourself too hard- remember that you are ill- you brain isn't firing on all four cylinders- so you will feel overwhelmed and exhausted easily. You are doing amazingly well for going to the gym and don't forget that you are also coming to terms with the death of your friend. That would be hard for anyone who wasn't depressed.

I have also read the mindful way through depression. I think it is a good book and mindfulness is definitely great for depression and anxiety but I think it is something you should do when you feel a bit better (like you said- being on a stable platform) as it takes some work to learn how to be mindful. It is taught to people with a history of depression to help prevent relapse rather than to people who are in the depths of depression. So read it and take note put don't put lots of pressure on yourself to try and do everything it says right now. If you are able to and enjoy reading then I would suggest a few books that have helped me:

  • Firstly- Depression- the Curse of the Strong by Dr Tim Cantopher. This is written by a psychiatrist and is brilliant for making you realise you are not weak/lazy. Read the reviews on amazon for it!

And several books by people telling of their battle with depression. I find reading books like this make me feel much less alone and that someone else understands what I am going through.

  • Shoot the Damn Dog by Sally Brampton- brilliant book
  • Sunbathing in the Rain- a Cheerful Book about Depression by Gwyneth Lewis
  • The Devil Within- a Memoir of Depression by Stephanie Merritt

Right- I think I have written enough for now!

Take care,

Fortress xxx

Edited by fortress_of_solitude

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Hi Fortress of Solitude

I read about your anxiety at night.Does taking the remeron at night help you at all?My pdoc prescribed it especially for my anxiety which mostly comes on at night.It`s been helpful to me in that regard.I hope your anxiety goes away.I know how really awful and unpleasant it can be.

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Hi, here is my update after I have seen psychiatrist:

On 30mg Mirtazapine and 30mg of Cymbalta (Duloxetine) to start off with and review after 4 weeks to increase the Cymbalta. Just taken my first dose of Cymbalta and now can only wait and see..... hope it works!

Sorry to hear about your anxiety attack fortress - it must be very scary esp as the nights can seem so long when we can't sleep properly and with anxiety on top of it.... very challenging! Yes I am wondering as well with Lady Mozzer - Hi!! if the Remeron does help with it? I had it prescribed for depression but it hasn't helped with that unfortunately :( but I guess at least I am sleeping better in general. Has it helped you with sleep at all?

Well, the psychiatrist I saw today has said that the Cymbalta should also help with the anxiety esp at the 30mg dose... but he said it would take about 2 weeks or so to notice any effects - well it's good that you seemed to have benefited from it already at least in terms of physical and mental energy!

It's also great that you can help yourself with the Mindfulness etc. to help calm yourself down. I think that is really good but like you said we do need to go gentle on ourselves with following books and certain techniques/programmes when stuck in the middle of a severe episode!! Otherwise it could easily lead to yet "another thing to have failed at". I will try to keep that in mind and only do what I can without being too hard on myself - the psychiatrist also said today that I am too hard on myself - I do realize that I need to keep practicing the self-compassion and remembering that I am not my thoughts when they are so distorted and self attacking!

Anyway thoughts and a ruminating mind can really mess with you when you believe them while you are in that depressed state. So having this awareness is an important step I have to keep reminding myself of. I have also just recently had an assessment with a counsellor but as it is funded mostly by a church they have quite a long waiting list (currently 4 months or so). But have gone through so much counselling in my life... then again life does change and my circumstances are different now - with hitting premenopause and having a teenage daughter..

I think I wonder what my purpose is and how I can actually not feel so inadequate about myself! I have been doing some Health at Every Size Volunteering in Coventry (as it is near Rugby) and I could run Well Now Courses (check out website: http://www.well-founded.org.uk/) (trained as a dietitian but haven't worked as one about 15 years because of mental health issues and raising my daughter). But running the courses means I need to feel well and confident - and I struggle with both at the moment....

Concerning the books - thanks for the suggestions - they are great books! I have read them all. I am the librarian for a self help group in Rugby called R.E.S.T (Relaxation Eases Stress and Tension) and we have most of the books in our self help library - although I can't remember much of Sunbathing in the Rain as its been a while since I read it - maybe time for a re read. Shooting the Damn Dog and The Devil Within give very good description of how cruel and brutal depression can be but also scary as Sally didn't get on with any meds and I can't imagine how to get out of the hellhole without meds??? as I am already trying every humanly possible thing to pull myself out - and I feel I just can't manage it!!

And in the book "the Devil Within" - didn't she get better with nutritional supplements etc?. I found that a bit confusing. Problem is with Sally Brampton and Stephanie Merritt is that they must have had enough financial security and the funding for all the therapies (and stay in the Priory several times for Sally) which unfortunately the majority of people just don't have... nevertheless it's always good not to feel alone with your struggles as suffering like this can make you feel so isolated and lonely even when you have caring people around you. But you do need people who truly understand and just "get it".

I think in terms of the gym I might have to take a step back from the enthusiastic classes until I feel a lot more stable as I can come out of them feeling suicidal! Maybe doing my own thing at my own pace and with the music I can bear at the moment. It's strange how I feel so disconnected to most music at the moment when really I do love music (when well or better).

Time for bed and telly soon. I feel worn out! Let me know how you are all getting on and hope your anxiety will lessen fortress. Keep us posted. I will let you know how I get on on my Mirt and Cymbalta combo - guess it will take its time - just hope I won't have so many side effects!

Michi xx

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Glad to hear you've got some new meds!!! I really hope they work for you- fingers crossed. And you made it through that week of waiting- well done!!

Yes, the Remeron does help with sleep/anxiety at night usually- when I take it it makes me feel pretty drowsy within half an hour. But sometimes if my anxiety is already high and I am already in the vicious circle of anxiety causing more anxiety it isn't always effective. I think the anxiety right now is the start up effect of Cymbalta. All the other antidepressants I have tried this year have caused anxiety except Remeron which reduced it. I think if I wasn't on the Remeron (and Lyrica) with the Cymbalta I would have horrible anxiety. The Remeron and Lyrica are making the start-up anxiety bearable apart from the odd moment of sudden severe anxiety which I can manage through deep breathing/mindful practice (and the diazepam isn't far away if needs be) and hopefully in the long term the Cymbalta will lessen the anxiety.

MichiHope- I hope you don't have too many horrible side effects with the Cymbalta- hopefully the Remeron should ease the anxiety for you. Cymbalta is supposed to be good for anxiety in the long term so any start up anxiety should ease in time. If its unbearable you still have the diazepam and let your psychiatrist know- he may be able to add something else in to ease it (Lyrica or even one of the antipsychotics such as quietiapine can be used).

Running those courses sounds like a fantastic idea- something you could definitely think about when you feel stronger. You would be very good at this as you would have the necessary compassionate attitude towards people and having gone through so much with your depression. One day you will feel well and confident enough to do this, just hang in there and have faith that you will get better. Reading what you've written reminds me of something my therapist said to me the other day- that I was a trier- I wasn't sitting around being lazy/feeling sorry for myself- but was constantly trying to get better. I think you are like this too- going to the gym/classes even though you don't enjoy it. It fits in with what Dr Tim Cantopher says about depression being the curse of the strong.

Yes- I do find it a bit confusing in those two books that neither of them spoke much about medication- maybe the depression did lift for Sally on its own accord? Or maybe the meds worked for her in the end but she didn't really mention it- she doesn't really say what she was on in the end. I don't get whether the nutritional supplements worked for Stephanie Meritt. But then she really didn't want to take medication so perhaps had faith that the nutritional supplements would work and there was some sort of placebo effect? Nevertheless, as you said they could both afford to do such private things as the Priory. Sally also learnt transcendental meditation which is very expensive too. So, although I love them they do make me feel a bit angry as their treatment is not what you would get on the NHS so you feel a bit let down by our own services.

Take Care,

Fortress xx

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Hi again and thank you fortress for another encouraging and insightful response!! People are very lucky to have you as a friend!!

I really feel for you having anxiety attacks - anxiety is just horrible and I hope that it will lessen in time and it's mostly just triggered because of that start up effect of the Cymbalta - I know its quite common to have that and should lessen HOPEFULLY!

I was in a terrible state with the Effexor anxiety and sleep wise - could have crawled the wall with anxiety and just couldn't sleep - so I know how terrifying it can be and how we can get sucked into that vicious circle of anxiety causing even more anxiety etc.. So don't feel bad if you have to make use of the odd diazepam in addition to your other meds.

I have to say in comparison to Effexor I get the first impression that I can tolerate the Cymbalta better as luckily I still manage to sleep and I haven't actually had to resort to my 5 to 10mg of diazepam since Saturday (started taking it on Friday). That means I feel a bit calmer but also very vulnerable, scared and fragile....

I guess having tried with so many meds now without much success I don't want to get my hopes up too much (been diagnosed with Treatment resistant depression - hate that description!). Well, its still very early days as just on the 4th day of 30mgs but at least the side effects are kind of tolerable - feeling a bit shaky, slow, "woozy" head, constipated (sorry if that is too much info) but overall not as suicidal and totally crushed. Just find it hard to get motivated and do things...

Well, spent most of the weekend in bed (with my 3 hot water bottles!) actually getting absorbed by a novel which was probably good. I just feel like hibernating and having time to heal my battered mind at the moment. Maybe the coming cold weather and rain is not helping either :cold: although I really wish I could function well independently of the weather - maybe I have to give myself a few more years of meditation practice to have constant sun and peace in my brain (I wish!).

Let us know how you are getting on when you get the chance (and everyone else on the Remeron/Mirtazapine combo). People with depression certainly have to be strong as it is one of the cruellest and toughest illness which isn't helped by the "invisibility" of it! But I think it makes us more compassionate and understanding! So yes hopefully one day I will be able to be running the Well Now course. Just need to be more self-compassionate as well and have patience!

Thank's again for the support!

Michi xx

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Hi, really struggling today- had to take diazepam this morning as feeling so shaky and in a state....

How do I get through this? Had to cancel a get together to discuss Health at Every Size with some friends in Coventry as I just don't feel up for it with the travelling and facing everyone etc..

Feel so guilty for not functioning - when will I feel human again? So want to get on with my life and get involved and feel good about things. But at the moment just feel like climbing Mount Everest for every little thing I do.

I know its only early days with the Cymbalta - haven't even been on it for a week but its so hard to stay patient and feel so alone and vulnerable and scared...

Michi xx

Edited by MichiHope

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Hi feeling really really distressed. Had a horrible morning. Waking up with terrible dread doesn't even justify the petrifying feeling I had... took one of my German tranquilizers as that's stronger than the diazepam. So somehow survived the morning but just been to my 13year old daughters Rosie's room to put some clean clothes away - but found masses of masses of sweet, choc and crisp wrappers, even eaten bowl of icing suger etc.. etc.


I know she binges and eats in secret, but I thought it had got a bit better and now I feel its just gotten even worse. I feel so helpless - I know I should be the expert with all my training etc. but when its your own daughter you feel so emotionally involved. I also feel guilty because of my depression and wonder if that puts her under even more pressure. I don't know. Don't know what to do. We addressed the issue so many times and whatever we do or talk about just doesn't seem to be working.


Think I am going to take another tranquilizer because I have to confront her today and somehow get through the rest of the day... I am just feeling so desperate and so desperately helpless. I want to help her so much but I am in such a dark place myself. What can I do? I feel my whole life is crumbling around me - even my husband Jonathan finds it hard to cope at the moment. I feel so lost and need some respite...


Michi xx

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Sorry I haven't been here the last few days. I've been doing okay- I've been feeling productive so I've got started on some uni work so that when I go back in January I'll be ready. I am still feeling a lot better mood wise- the Cymbalta is working for me.

However, I still get some horrible anxiety at night. I am fine during the day when I am busy doing things but when I get into bed at night and try to switch off I get this sudden rush of anxiety mixed with terrible dread and fear about anything and everything. I can feel the adrenalin coursing through my veins- I can feel it burning down my arms. Its awful.

I know its the Cymbalta as most of the antidep. have made me feel like this (apart from Remeron). I am hoping that with time it will ease off. I resorted to taking some diazepam the other night to help me deal with it. I've also been using mindfulness and deep breathing so it doesn't turn it into a panic attack- they keep it at bay and allow me to fall asleep. I then wake up feeling fine but as the day goes on I start to dread going to bed which doesn't help!

MichiHope you seem to be having similar problems- overwhelming dread/terror. I'm sorry you are getting this- there aren't any words to describe how utterly terrifying and paralysing this is. I think it must be the Cymbalta- it is common to get panic attacks when starting meds like this and it should stop in time- just hang in there and let it work its course. Use the diazepam and other stuff to help you get through it. I am also constipated with the Cymbalta- it seems to be easing a bit the last few days so I hope it won't last (oh, and its not too much information either!)

You sound like you are having a bad few days- please remember to take it easy on yourself- its not even been a week so its barely had a chance to work. Don't be too hard on yourself for cancelling meetings if you are not up to it. You've had depression for a long time- it'll take some time before you are ready to face the world properly.

A lot of people who are ill (not just with mental health disorders) feel guilty about being a burden on your family- its even harder when you are depressed as that exacerbates the guilt. The guilt can sometimes be a good thing though- it means you can still love/care for your family as you worry about them, and it keeps you from doing anything to hurt yourself/them. It sounds like you have a good relationship with your family if you can talk to them about the depression. Its going to be hard for all of you- its is okay to feel like the world is crumbling down around you- you are all in a very distressing place right now- it is a case of weathering the storm until it passes. Take a deep breath and remember that it won't be like this forever. Things are moving in the right direction as you are on a new medication which will kick in properly in a week or so, and then you will be able to be the person you want to be again.

I wonder whether you have spoken to your daughter- I can't really offer much advice as I don't have any children, but it sounds like a difficult situation. You probably need to speak to her gently, but firmly without judging her for why she is bingeing on sugar. Let her know you are there if she wants to talk about it, and don't get too angry with her. I wish I could be more helpful but I don't have much experience with teenage girls (and have forgotten what it was like to be one).

The respite will come- hang in there :console: and have a flower :flowers:

Fortress xxxx

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