I thought it might be useful for some of you to know what the plan is for tapering this time, as opposed to the short, sharp shock strategy of the last time. I already know I'm particularly sensitive to side effects, so it stands to reason that I would find it as tough stopping these drugs as I do starting. So here's how it'll go, in an ideal world:
- week 1: two days on full dose, one day on half. I've just finished week one, and so far so good.
- week 2: alternate between full and half dose, day on, day off
- week 3: two days on half dose, one day on full
- week 4: half dose
With any luck, I'll make it this far without (m)any of the withdrawal symptoms I got last time. The psychiatrist did say she'd see me again at that stage to plan the next phase, although I'm not entirely optimistic of an appointment coming through that quickly. If it doesn't, I'll be relying on my GP to make the decisions, although I expect going from half to none will follow a similar pattern to the first month. I still can't quite believe just how hard it is to get off these things. The interweb is full of forums dedicated to the horror of anti depressant withdrawal, although I'm trying (not entirely successfully) to stay away from them. One day at a time is my best chance of getting through it successfully this time.
As for Therapist? Once more, she has proven herself to have the patience of a saint, as well as being very good at her job. I regularly (you've probably picked up on this) freak out about being too dependent
on her/too curious about her and get myself tied up in knots about what to do, convinced that my only option is to stop seeing her. I eventually work up the courage to bring it to her, we talk about it, we talk about options, and then carry on as before. Transference
. God I'm tired of transference!!! At the moment, I need her support, and the lack of judgement, as well as total acceptance that goes with that support. I'm likely to need that for some time. I have GOT to stop beating myself up for needing that!! I strongly suspect we will continue having this conversation at regular intervals (hence patience of a saint) as it tends to come up when I'm tired, not feeling great and generally under resourced. But as long as I keep talking about it, rather than avoiding the problem or assuming that my only option is to cut myself off from her, we can keep working through it. Some day, sooner rather than later I hope, it won't be an issue any more.
Labels: compassion, GP, psychiatrist, side effects, tapering, therapist, transference, withdrawal