I totally weirded out my doctor last week. Twelve days without an antidepressant and I had no symptoms, none. Six weeks ago I decided to taper off my meds so we could try IVF. I had initially decided to stay on meds while we tried to conceive and throughout pregnancy after discussing with my a perinatal specialist and my former psychiatrist. Chad and I thought it would be best considering my past episodes of psychosis and the risks that could pose for me and our child. It was a tough decision, but I had tried to stop in the past and ended up having a fairly intense episode in March of 2013. That’s when I started seeing a naturopath and began taking loads of amino acids that caused major digestive issues. I stuck it out for 18 months, but when I was up to 62 pills a day and still couldn’t go without an antidepressant for long, I threw in the towel. Not to mention we were spending $1,000 per month.
Recently though my gut starting telling me I should stop meds. I’ve been stable for over 3 years and my new psychiatrist considered me to be in remission. I began cutting my antipsychotic dose in half for a week then my antidepressant. I then cut the antidepressant in half again for a week and stopped. I didn’t have any Bipolar symptoms at all and started sleeping better than I had in years. I had struggled for years with anxiety and racing thoughts at bedtime which caused onset insomnia. It was so frustrating and sometimes I wouldn’t fall asleep until the middle of the night which made getting up for work on time almost impossible. I’m lucky my work is flexible with my hours and last year I started supporting California so I was able to change my schedule. Right now I am still on an antipsychotic, but my last dose is tomorrow. I haven’t missed a dose in years, but when I have in the past I barely slept and struggled to get through the following day. I felt completely off and uncomfortable in my own skin, counting down the hours to dinner when i could take my med and go to sleep. Antipsychotic withdrawal is no joke so I decided to take two weeks off work after i stop to give me time to adjust.
I am a little nervous about stopping this last med. It is going to take a lot of strength and patience to get through the first few days. My psychiatrist said stopping the antidepressant should have been harder than stopping the antipsychotic, but miraculously I’ve been doing fine. This gives me hope. I am in such a good place right now. I couldn’t have asked for a better time to go through this process. The timing is perfect and I am so incredibly grateful. Good things are on the horizon. I can just feel it.