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Thread: Does anyone here suffer from mental illnesses and not take medication?

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    bml0624's Avatar
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    Does anyone here suffer from mental illnesses and not take medication?

    I figured this is random and off-topic anyways, but does anyone here suffer from mental illness and not take medication?

    I've been told that when I'm ON medication, that I become an ass and that I am more angry and prone to outbursts. But, I feel that when I am on the medication that it helps me and it gets rid of the sadness (but not the underlying anger). I'm also apparently more prone to "not give a fuck" about grades and such when I take medication.

    Anyways, I was on a regiment a while ago, but I cannot afford to see a psychiatrist and would prefer to not have myself committed. I was also nervous that when I took an SNRI for smoking cessation and depression, I ended up having a 3 day psychosis where I didn't leave my room except for bits of food around 3am every night.

    Anyways, if you do not take medication, how do you manage every day life? I personally suffer from Anxiety, Severe (chronic) Depression, Paranoia, and Borderline Personality Disorder (I'm revisiting this diagnosis as I haven't been diagnosed with it since a visit 5 years ago as an adolescent), and PTSD (mostly resolved, was after a horrific car accident).

    TL;DR: How does one handle mental illness without meds?
    Last edited by bml0624; 12-02-2013 at 10:36 PM.

  2. #2


    Peta's Avatar
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    Ummm ok well I can give you MY experience, but I in no way reccomend the same for you, since each situation can be entirely different.
    I suffer from depression/anxiety and was on meds. I found when I was on meds, my moods remained more stabilised and I generally found myself calmer. I made the mistake of weaning myself off my meds instead of seeking a professional opinion and within 2-3 weeks, my moods went crazy. I was having crazy panic attacks, getting hysterical over the smallest things. Took me about 2 months to get over that hurdle, but I feel that I'm relatively OK now (without meds). But it took a while to get there and even now, still have pretty bad relapses occasionally.

    From what I'm reading though, why do you need to be off the medication? If /you/ feel that you function better with them, I would remain with them for the time being. Readjusting can be hard. I took care to slowly reduce my prescription until I weaned myself off completely, and even then, really struggled for the first little bit. Be careful, if you do decide that's the path you wanna take.
    As for general handling without, I threw myself into exercise, general hobbies etc.

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    MikeyR's Avatar
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    I was on meds for a couple years, but no longer. I suffer from social phobia and major depressive disorder. Top priorities for me are:
    - Regular physical activity
    - Good sleep hygiene
    - Regular meals
    - Regular social interaction
    - Structured schedule
    - Goal setting (probably most important for me)

    I recently started to relapse into isolation, staying up all night, not eating, etc. Being in school helps me manage myself because I force myself to get out of bed in the morning and go to school (structured schedule). I have my friends in class (social interaction) and eat when I'm hungry (regular meals). It tends to put me on a nice sleep schedule too because I'm up at 5am most days of the week. I also have my goals of smashing my classes with awesome grades so that really gets me up in the morning.

    When I was on meds, I was basically a zombie. Was on paxil and it helped my panic attacks. Once I came off it, I was spending 5 days a week at the gym, and I had given myself a goal of getting back in shape to play varsity volleyball (as I used to be a national level volleyball player). This training had me going hard for about 8 months; it helped my mood and anxiety a ton.

    So I guess for me, setting goals for myself is how I get through each day. Without the long term goal of graduating and becoming a game dev, I wouldn't be setting small academic goals for myself. Without the long term goal of being a varsity athlete, I wouldn't have been exercising which is factually beneficial towards mental health.

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    bml0624 (12-02-2013)

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    bml0624's Avatar
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    Oh, I am vehemently opposed to being off my medication personally but for now I cannot even get the right ones prescribed to me. This will sound stupid but my dad will yank what help he's giving me to finish college (half federal loans, half his $$$) if I go back on any regiment he disagrees with.

    Last time I was on a regiment of meds, I was taking Prozac 40mg, Trazedone 100mg, Xanax (up to) 2mg, and I was talking to the doctor about maybe adding another antidepressant or maybe a mood stabilizer to even me out a bit more. I had the intentions of weaning off the Xanax and Trazedone after I had recovered from the PTSD completely, but him and my stepmother (hope she rots) thought I was abusing the Xanax; so when I was attending CC one day, they trashed all of my prescriptions. Needless to say, I crashed hardcore and had (and still have) massive derealization since that incident that hasn't really gone away. He said I freaked out because of the meds (not the case...the withdrawal caused it) and refuses to let me go on anything he might deem "dangerous".

    I had gotten back on Prozac 20mg for a few weeks last month, but couldn't afford to continue the prescription. I'm sort of in limbo in that I can't really seek out what I need unless its via an ER visit (pdocs are too expensive for me here).

    I probably just need to find another person who might be willing to do an evaluation on the cheap to get me started on medications...I'm willing to hide it until I graduate and am out on my own if I can.

    Yeah, the derealization is the worst for me. Feels like a weird sort-of body high...and not one that is enjoyable.
    Last edited by bml0624; 12-02-2013 at 10:58 PM.

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    Tyrantruma's Avatar
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    I used to be on a ton of different meds for mental problems. But they just make me worse. So I'd rather not take them.

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    Demetri's Avatar
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    I think I'm seriously depressed

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    My friend has social anxiety once in a while and he doesn't think it merits getting an evaluation and prescription so sometimes he buys xanax for occasions he feels he'll need it.. He doesn't have insurance so $2 a 1mg bar is probably cheaper than going legally sans insurance. Without it if he has any anxiety he deals with it on his own.

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    Maths's Avatar
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    I started my meds in 2010 with a 15mg dose of Cipralex.

    Gradually went down to 2.5 mg then stopped last may.

    Some stuff changed and I had to start back, 5mg doses. Apparently 5mg doses and under do not affect much the state of mind, but I just feel safer taking them. I have generalized anxiety and panic crisis and I'm afraid of what I could do if I couldn't control myself when I have those crisis.

    Anyway, yeah.

  11. #9

    Icebox's Avatar
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    I dated an unmedicated mania sufferer for a long time. It was tough at times but he had had such a traumatic experience with being prescribed incorrect when he was in his teens that he was very reluctant to seek medication. (They suspected psychosis of some sort and gave him lithium - he was far too young and far from psychotic.)
    Even though he was difficult to deal with a lot of the time his mania meant a lot to him in terms of identity and it was just part of who he was.

    I take fluoxetine and it took me a LOT of convincing to even consider medicating my anxiety. It all comes down to a cost-benefit analysis and you often won't fully understand that until you trial the medicine yourself. I was very fortunate to have really hit the target with the first meds I went on - some spend months finding one (or a combo) that works for them, which I'm sure lots of you understand well.

    I just get sassy as fuck on my meds and have horrific sugar cravings. I also put on a lot more weight than I'd have liked and I tend to also have that not-giving-as-much-of-a-fuck attitude to things. However, it's a thousand times better than being needlessly anxious all the time, so I'd say I'm far happier with the meds than without.
    @bml0624 I'm so sorry you went through withdrawal, it's awful :c it's never okay to go cold turkey on these meds, that's why it says 'DO NOT STOP TAKING THIS MEDICINE' on the bottle!

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    MissMellon's Avatar
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    I was on medication for most of my life until I entered a situation without access to health care so I ended up weaning myself down and dealing with that for a bit. Personally I found that weaning myself helped ease it a bit. Withdrawals are nasty. [So in that area I recommend if you can't take it consistently be extremely careful with it. Might be better to not in some cases because it will do more harm then good. Either take them or don't]

    How I handle myself when I get into those states now is trying to calm down first of all. If you can distract yourself long enough to gain some kind of handle on your emotions it's easier to deal with the situation. I talk to someone if I have too as well. Not even about what is wrong but sometimes just a normal conversation is soothing.

    Basically on that note though. You need to be able to sooth yourself. You may not be happy go lucky all the time but as you handle your life and issues that will work itself out. The danger times are when you get worked up. You just need to get through that. You'll be okay.

    As for any issues with how you react with other people or such. I find self reflection to be quite useful. I know i'm still not always the best person to others and I regret that. But I also know a big redemption to myself is that I could be so much worse. But like I said be aware of yourself and know what you tend to do with people or in certain situations.

    I personally strongly don't want to go back on medication but that is partly due to a pride I had on being okay without them. However I can recognize when I'm not exactly okay. Help isn't a bad thing.

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