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catw66

Quit adderall July 2013 and now here I am again

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Hi -

 

I had successfully quit a three-year prescription use of Adderall for severe fatigue, ADD, and depression a couple of summers ago and here I am again.

 

I have suffered from severe bipolar II depression for many years now. I also suffer from chronic pain and fatigue, along with ADD. I was put on Adderall around 2010 and never made the connection that my depression was getting so much worse due to it. I almost had ECT and the doctor told me to get off my meds and see how I felt.

 

Well, I got myself off of Adderall. I was on about 40 mg ER a day. Then I got myself off of Cymbalta. Then I got myself off of my cannabis habit, which I was going on and off with for years.

 

I was feeling pretty good after a while apart from stress in my life of moving around trying to find the right place to live. I have been partially disabled from my conditions since about 2001 after a bad car accident. So I've had special needs and in trying to think of my future after getting priced out of Denver and listening to my mother try and dictate my life and dangle a carrot in front of my face of a house some day if I can find a place affordable enough. So I settled on some hip little town in NC., having never spent any time there really and knowing no one.

 

Compared to where I was, it was a little cheaper - though not for long....

 

 I should have known better that it would not be sunny enough for me, regardless of what everyone else kept telling me about it. I also have severe SAD. This place rains a lot and by about October, I started to feel slightly depressed. By Decmeber, I was extremely depressed and had no energy whatsoever.

 

There are not many medications I can take due to the bipolar. I still had some Adderall around (just in case my fatigue got really bad, I thought I'd use it if I needed to push through something and I did on occasion).

 

This winter, I ended up taking a bit here and there and found it helped a lot. I got in to see a psychiatrist and she gave me an Rx for immediate release Adderall, Wellbutrin, and Lamictal. Wellbutrin is supposed to help with SAD but due to my bipolar disorder, I was unable to take a therapuetic dose. At first I only took 10 mg of Adderall a day and then slowly graduated up to 20 mg. and sometimes a bit more.

 

This was in January when I started. Now it is June and I realized that my depression has turned right back into the awful "Adderall has turned against me" sense of hollowness, I want to kill myself, I don't care about anything despair - and with that dull depression headache.

 

I have to say it did help me get things done during the winter. All I did was socialize a little and work as much as I could on my home business so I could afford to move out of here at the end of my lease this August.

 

Now I need to get off of it again before I kill myself. I was hoping I would enjoy this place for the summer before I moved, but now it looks like I will be spending it mostly alone again, working my way through withdrwal, and all with the added stress of having to move again - back to Colorado, though to a different area I liked in Southern Colorado - with plenty more sun.

 

I am hoping the low dose of Wellbutrin will ease this and then I can work my way off of that. I will take my B-Complex, L-Tyrosine, and NAC, which I took last time. Also something to suppor the adrenals.

 

I also borrowed a friend's alpha-stim for an hour and it helped so much that I found a way to buy one for around $415.00. I get it this Monday and I am sure that will make this less painful this time.

 

I also realize I've been having heightened anxiety since starting Adderall as well. I wonder it if has not been the cause of a lot of dark and scary thoughts.

 

I have been off of cannabis for about 15 months and then I had a slip recently because I was so depressed and wound up and nothing else was working. I was sure I was going to end up in the hospital that day so I thought, Why not? Well, I felt even more dull the next day and decided to go back to no cannabis again. In fact, I realize now that I was using more cannabis on my last go-around with Adderall because it was the only thing that got me out of that sou-sinkling motivationless pit I was always in.

 

My year-long battle with severe depression and trying to find the best place for me as I get older has put me through absolute hell, especially the past few years. I know once I recover from the Adderall withdrawal, I will feel more positive and ready to go forward again.

 

I kept wondering why I wasn't feeling better with so much more sun lately and then I realized the Adderall had finally turned on me. I know the exact quality of feeling from last time.

 

It definitely takes away enthusiasm and caring about things after a while. I just can't get motivated or excited about anything. When I got through the withdrawal last time, I defintely felt more motivated and alive again. I know it is possible to get through it. I don't think it took as long as I thought it would either.

 

So here I go again. Just wanted to share. At the time it seemed like a good idea....out of desperation with severe SAD symptoms. It helped for a while at least and now it's time to go through this again. At least I know what to expect.

 

Cat

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You sound like you know exactly what you're in for.  I've definitely taken that plunge before even when deep down I knew it was a bad idea.  And yeah, for a while all your problems are gone and then they just come back way worse in the end.

 

Post lots and let us know how we can help!

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Thank you. Today is very, very rough. The thing with Adderall is that it causes what I feel is a very severe depression headache. Some of this right now is hormones and I know it will ease up at least a bit. After this, I never want to touch this stuff again. Will update and everyone know if my alpha-stim unit proves helpful.

 

For now, I just keep telling myself to just survive, don't even think about suicide, and just get through it. Because I know from past experience that it gets a lot better in time. But what an isolating, horrible feeling. I feel like the loneliest person alive lately and I know that's depression and lack of energy - another thing Adderall does....

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Hang in there Cat. You are right, this will get so much better in the future.

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Thanks, Greg. It does get better. I was surprised that it got as good as it did. I had actual, natural enthusiasm and motivation for things. But I remember feeling really spaced and tired for a while, though the depression was at least starting to abate. Having gone through quitting already, I think I figured I could just do it again, though I forgot how truly miserable it all was. But I'm looking forward to it too.

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This whole web site was/is also a big help. I am enjoying revisiting the tips on how to quit, etc. because they are exactly how I got through it. And the writing style is great too, which helps.

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Youre being a warrior right now and you should be really proud of yourself for that!  :D :D  :D

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I had a constant headache on Adderall.  It was something that I just lived with daily to get the addy effects.  Now, when I have a headache, I am miserable.  I can't believe I thought it was worth it to be in pain everyday...

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What my curiosity is: Why do people turn back to these drugs? Are they that mind powerful that they have you craving and aching for more? Does it hold a grip on you, as if you were merely a puppet on a string? I mean, I know people can't help it, I'm not here to say anything negative because we all have our fair shares of addiction/relapsing, amirite?

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your own sentence probably answers that question in a deep way

 

 

Having gone through quitting already, I think I figured I could just do it again, though I forgot how truly miserable it all was. But I'm looking forward to it too.

 

We romanticize the drug.  And at least to me, that means we over-exaggerate to ourselves how great it was when we were on it, and we "selectively forget" all the pain it caused (particularly the withdrawals from coming off of it).

And that is just our brains natural way of looking back on the past.  We always look back on the past with nostalgia, remembering things better than they actually were (this in itself is not a bad thing).  But when you couple it with the powerful draw of an addictive substance, you get a recipe for relapse.

 

 

we all have our fair shares of addiction/relapsing, amirite?

 

*raises glass* Amen

 

But now we know better!  Let's act differently.

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What my curiosity is: Why do people turn back to these drugs? Are they that mind powerful that they have you craving and aching for more? Does it hold a grip on you, as if you were merely a puppet on a string? I mean, I know people can't help it, I'm not here to say anything negative because we all have our fair shares of addiction/relapsing, amirite?

 I think if you read my story you can see maybe ( If I spelled it out clearly enough) that I deal with chronic fatigue and severe depression. when I had to do something, a couple of adderall seemed fine - like move across the country. Then I ended up in a place with not enough sun and had a bad experience with SAD and was so miserable I thought it might help and it did - for a while. And then it turned on me. My doctor prescribed them and I was taking as little as possible and then my tolerance built up, causing me to take what she prescribed and then some at times - and I started feeling worse, so I decided it was not helping me anymore but hurting me.

 

Anti-dpressants make things much worse for me in different ways and Adderall was all I could tolerate pretty much - while it worked.

 

In my case, I was self-medicating occasionally for chronic fatigue and then severe seasonal affective disorder, with a psychiatrist agreeing and prescribing.  I never romanticized it at all - was just desperate for relief from my conditions. But that relief is short-lived. Adderall can no longer be an option for me. It is easy to forget how it takes away with one hand what it gave with another at first.

 

I didn't even think about Adderall much after I quit, though I do think it helped me function during last winter. So, it had its purpose and now I am paying for that again. Had I not kept some extra, just in case I had something I really had to get through in spite of chronic fatigue syndrome, I would not have ended back up on it. So it just cannot be an option anymore. When I am done, I am not keeping any. No more falsely getting through things I cannot really do or should not do.

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