ResilientCat

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  1. I quit dexies 2 1/2 years ago here is an update

    Yes it is like growing our “self garden” i love your analogy Lovebear. I have found with all the healing activities, the motivation to do more comes easily because you feel so much better. But it does take up a lot of time! My challenge now will be to be able to live a more normal life, spend more time socializing etc while still keeping my garden healthy
  2. Hi everyone, It has been nearly 3 years since my original post on here, declaring my plan to quit dexamphetamine after being on them for 13 years. I imagined myself being on here a lot through the journey, but it turned out I preferred to leave the whole thing behind and move on entirely. Now I am ready to share my story in the hope it can help others. I stuck to my plan and weaned down my dose over a period of about 6 months (from 6-7 pills per day down to 2 per day) then quit completely. (I was prescribed 10 per day and for some earlier years was taking this much, yikes!) To actually quit, I took a month of annual leave and started with a weekend meditation retreat, highly recommend this if it is at all possible. Great way to start to enjoy the feeling of slowing everything down and being in the moment. I thought in this first month I would want to sleep all the time and get really depressed, but I didnt. I meditated and exercised everyday to get some healthy habits going, and realised natural endorphins are amazing! Oh and I also quit a daily weed smoking habit at the same time. My partner at the time was very supportive cheering me on, which helped a lot. It was like I was getting to know my true self for the first time, which was actually a beautiful experience (and still is!). Going back to full time work was not as hard as I had imagined it would be (I work as a dietitian). Nobody seemed to notice. It hasn’t however been without some immense challenges which I am still dealing with, and Im sure would be different for everyone. One thing to bear in mind is that I was put on dexies as a treatment for bulimia at age 22. I was told I may have also had ADD but I don’t think so. So my biggest challenges since quitting have been anxiety and insomnia. I had been self-medicating with weed for many many years and stopped that cold turkey. I had also been taking sleeping pills, mostly over the counter but also prescribed, for many years while on the dexies. So I really messed with my sleep wake cycles. Looking back, it is unbelievable how much I was able to function with no sleep and no dexies! So many days I just managed to get through the day somehow, it was almost like I was a robot superhuman I would have 1 coffee in the morning, that was it. Now it has been 2 1/2 years and I haven’t looked back. I have moments where I am filled with joy everyday and just so grateful to be able to function without drugs. The only things I take now are melatonin and L-tryptophan, which both help with sleep. Although I don’t think it is bad if you do need other meds to get you through this process, whatever it takes it will be worth it! I still struggle with sleep and anxiety but it is overall improving. I wake up every 1 - 2 hours, but now I am often getting back to sleep more easily. I see a craniosacral therapist every 3 weeks who is amazing and helping to repair my nervous system. The other thing I have to admit is that I completely stopped socialising for about a year. This was necessary for me, I had to simplify my life as much as possible, and working full time took most of my energy! On weekends I would actually enjoy meditating and doing housework and cooking and just being in a relaxed state, and of course Netflix helps enormously I still get anxious if I make plans so my close friends know I am better with deciding to catch up on the day. I then also had a relationship break up - I left my partner as I had become such a different human. Once I had a clear head off all the drugs, I slowly realised I couldn’t picture a future together (I was also paying for everything for our whole relationship of 4 years and it became clear this was never going to change). So for the past year I have been living alone and actually loving my independence. Not having any social responsibilities attached to a partner has been a relief for me too. This is still something I need to work on, as I don’t really have much desire to socialise, especially not at night, as I am quite tired by then and I like going to bed early! But I have reconnected with a few very close friends and left the masses behind. I also really enjoy time with my family now, which I didn’t before because I was always hiding something! So I know this is a long post, I would just like to mention the tools that have helped me throughout this process. 1. Donna Eden 5 minute energy medicine routine - I do this every morning - it makes you feel so good. Sometimes I do it after lunch at work as well. I have read her books and did one online course but you can just follow along with the 5 min routine on you tube til you learn it. 2. Yoga most days at home - I love Yoga with Adriene on youtube, she is great! 3. Daily exercise - so important to get the endorphins flowing and feel empowered and energised - I love walking and listening to a good podcast (highly recommend WTF with Marc Maron) 4. Qi Gong - I did this almost daily for the first year - on youtube Lee Holden morning and evening qi gong sessions are great. Still go back to this when I feel anxious or stuck in my head, its like hitting a reset button. 5. Meditation - I use the Insight Timer meditation app - it is amazing so many great guided meditations on there. 6. Listening to self-help podcasts - I love Tara Brach and listened to her podcasts a lot while going for walks in the first year. Her meditations are great too and all are available on her website for free www.tarabrach.com 7. EFT tapping - when I get into a bad patch - I use tapping as it seems to shift my energy quite quickly. Heaps of tapping videos on youtube - I really like Brad Yates. 8. Healthy eating - I did find my appetite increased off the meds (but not as much as I expected). Regular healthy snacks and proper balanced meals - loads of veg/salad, 1/4 plate carbs 1/4 protein with lunch and dinner to help feel full. I have put on about 2-3 kg since I quit, and am working on adopting a healthy body image and accepting this. 9. Ecstatic dance - I started this about 1.5 years in when I was yearning to connect with people but not feeling up for socialising. You go to a class and you dance your heart out and connect with all these people without having to have a conversation, suits me perfectly! Helped a lot when I started feeling very lonely and isolated. 10. Finally I have recently discovered epsom salt baths are a really nice way to relax if you are anxious, and a lovely way to unwind after work, or just to pass the time and nurture yourself So you can see I have really devoted my whole life to my healing for the past few years, it isnt easy but I truly love doing all those things. And it was necessary to use every tool possible after being on the meds for so long. I really hope this brings hope to anyone still contemplating quitting or those going through the process, if I can do it after 13 years on meds, anyone can! I honestly cant express how much better life is off the meds. You can truly connect with yourself and others on a much deeper level, it is beautiful. And I am accepting this is a slow process, I still have a long way to go but I will eventually find my way back to living a more social life again. If you made it this far, thanks for listening All the best to you all, Vanessa
  3. After 15 years, I'm done!!!

    Congrats CarpeDiem!!!
  4. After 15 years, I'm done!!!

    Woohoo!! This is great news... Nearly 2 weeks well done!! Keep the updates coming 😊
  5. After 15 years, I'm done!!!

    Congrats on a full week CarpeDiem!!! ðŸ‘🎉
  6. My Tapering Progress

    Hi Cat! I have found that hormones make me way more insecure and emotional / depressed while I am tapering too. Usually I would have pushed through the week of my cycle with a higher dosage as it always makes me very tired! You got through it on the lower dosage so u should be very proud of yourself! I am going very slowly with tapering - reducing my dose by 5mg every 4 weeks. In fact when I had been on 20mg for 4 full weeks I had a week inbetween where I went to 15mg every second day before going down to 15mg daily. I find this helps me adjust my routine at work to the lower dosage. What I have found is that the first two weeks on lower dose I am very anxious and exhausted, the fear hits me pretty hard, I don't sleep well etc then by the last 2 weeks on the lower dose I start functioning better and feeling more confident about the next step. I actually start thinking I can totally do this, I'm ready! I am almost 3 weeks on 15mg so will step down to 10mg soon. I am doing it super slow, kind of following guidelines on this website http://www.theroadback.org/ADHDtaper.aspx I tried the supplements they recommend but they made me feel really drowsy and wired at the same time, not good! Freaked me out so I'm going to wait til I'm off completely to try them again. For now coffee and exercise are helping immensely!
  7. After 15 years, I'm done!!!

    This is so great to hear, well done! You are an inspiration to me!!! 😊👠Think I will have to get some L-Tyrosine for when I actually quit. Lots of good reports on here. Will also look into the Now supplements... Thanks for the tips... Gonna need all the help I can get!
  8. After 15 years, I'm done!!!

    Hi CarpeDiem, Congratulations on quitting adderall and cigarettes! I totally know what you mean with becoming so task oriented. I've realized on stimulants everything becomes a task on the to do list... Including social events, family time... I don't enjoy that quality time like I used to. And cleaning or organizing always seem more important! There is so much more to life! I've been thinking of trying L-tyrosine when I finally wean down to nothing... What dose of tyrosine do you take?
  9. Here is my story long term user dexamphetamine

    Hi Cat, good to hear from you! Yep I'm feeling very slowed down def my hardest week yet... I'm way less productive at work already which is scary! And today I had quite a few word mix ups, like I said "just wait in the dining room" instead of the "waiting room"... This is new and scared me and I actually made myself go for a walk after work to help my brain repair itself! Felt like a piece of jelly but I did it and feel better now. And a tired feeling like my vision is hazy... Coffee def helps thank god!! But I am having trouble sleeping with anxiety from the fear of what's to come so can't have it in the afternoon at this stage. Once I cut my after lunch dose I should be able to I hope! How are you going with tapering? My plan is still to do it really slowly so I can adjust to it as I've been on the meds for over a third of my life!! Stay in touch we can do it!!
  10. Here is my story long term user dexamphetamine

    Hi Cat, Thanks for your reply. I just read your other recent posts and congrats on quitting! All power to you!! Can't wait til I can say those words, although it is a scary thought after so many years... You are an inspiration to me! I look forward to having nicer skin and hair and the healthy glow you described I'm sure after only 6 months back on it will come more quickly for you this time! With food I think going easy on carbs is the key, filling up on lots of protein and veggies. The article on nutrition on this site is spot on. And I don't want to obsess over food so if that means gaining some weight then so be it! I know exercise will also be a major factor for me and so far finding it hard during the weaning stages to get motivated. I am so lazy and still on stimulants! I did find a good video on YouTube - 30 days of yoga with Adrienne. She is awesome and funny and the sessions are only 15-30 min which I can motivate myself to actually do. Only up to day 7 and that's taken me over 2 weeks... But I can feel the difference! And I guess you gotta start somewhere!
  11. Here is my story long term user dexamphetamine

    Thanks so much for your replies guys! Really appreciate it. Always Awesome - i know you are right and that could be a tough one for me... And I work as a dietitian so that's a bit of added pressure! I've always actually had a good appetite on the meds and I eat healthy but I know I will also be less active for a while... Guess this is something I will have to come to terms with... Luckily the majority of patients I work with are elderly and have poor eyesight! 😠Grumpycat - I know what you mean... I remember thinking I was the luckiest person in the world... Everything in life suddenly became more fun and easy! If only I'd known what a beast I was dealing with. Deep down I think I knew it was a bad idea, but I've never been good at valuing long term consequences over instant gratification!
  12. Here is my story long term user dexamphetamine

    Thanks ZK! It's funny I feel like I know you as I've read so many of your posts. Yeah dexamphetamine is called Dexedrine in the U.S. but it's all the same stimulating shit! Happy to represent the Aussies and hopefully become poster girl for the weaning method!! Might have to take a few weeks off work so I can sleep sleep sleeeeeep when I get down to zero... Eeek!
  13. Hi everyone, It is about time I started participating on here, as I’ve been stalking these forums for years! This community has given me so much hope and comfort that I am not alone. I am so grateful to Mike for creating this amazing website, and I hope I can make a useful contribution that will help others as well as lean on you all for support when I need it. So here is my story… I am 34 years old and have been taking dexamphetamine for 12 years. It started in my last year of university. I had an eating disorder (bulimia) and saw a psychiatrist who specialized in this area. The first thing he did was prescribe dexamphetamine, which is apparently used as an ‘off-label’ treatment for eating disorders here in Australia. He also said I probably had ‘a touch of ADD’ (WTF?!?). I had taken dexies before as a party drug, so I was like yeeeah bring it on! Thinking I will just use it for a short time to get over the bulimia addiction and then have access to a party favor I could share with my friends. Big mistake. Although my eating disorder was cured overnight, it was merely replaced with a different addiction… to stimulant meds. My dose was quickly increased to 10x 5mg pills per day (the max prescribed dosage is 12/day or 60mg for adults). I only took this much (or sometimes more) to party on the weekends, but on average I would say for about 8 years I was taking 8 pills per day (40 mg). (I think the conversion to Adderall is 10mg addie = 7.5mg dex) Over the past 4 years I have wanted to get off this horrible drug and started trying to take less. Although I tolerated it very well for most of that time, and it greatly helped my confidence, mood, motivation, productivity, just about everything! I realize it is unsustainable, and is holding me back from moving forward with my life. Eg maybe I want to get married, have kids, travel the world?? I can’t make plans because I don’t know who I will be when I’m not on this drug. And Im too busy going about my daily activities like a freaking robot! In the last few years it has also become less effective, yet the side-effects are worse, especially the insomnia. So I also take regular sleep aids and this viscious cycle has to stop! My first step was to confess everything to my boyfriend, who has been amazingly supportive. I had been living a lie for the first 18 months of our relationship, I thought he would be so disappointed in me, but he has been very understanding. That was about 9 months ago. From there I started to cut down my dosage further – however found I stepped back up again. Finally I had a ‘break down’ moment a few months ago. The reality of my situation slapped me hard in the face... Full blown, rocking back and forth mental patient moment... Holy shit! I realized I have a big challenge ahead and I made the decision to be accountable and face up to it. I had been living in blissful denial for too long. While I was aware I was taking pills to get through the day, I was able to shut that part of my mind off and just get on with it. So for the past few months I started to get serious about tapering. Though I am doing it very slowly – reducing my dose by 5mg (1 pill) per month. So far I have been strong and stayed on track – 1st month 5 per day, 2nd month 4 per day. I’m now into my first week on 15mg / day (3 pills per day). I’ve had really bad anxiety, which has made my sleeping issues worse. But for the most part, I am functioning well on the lower dose. Makes me realize I was on way too high a dose before! Of course, this is nothing compared to completely quitting. I know that lies ahead. I have just started seeing a psychologist who is doing a brain rewiring program with me, and hopefully this helps (will tell you all about it in another post!) I’m also having 1 – 2 coffees per day since tapering my dose, this helps with work. And I take magnesium twice daily – this helps my bowels, which have also slowed right down since reducing my dose. I’ve practically stopped socializing altogether lately too. I find if I make plans, I get so anxious about not being my excited bubbly happy self (ie highly medicated) I completely freak out and panic. Then I have to let people down. I’m content with being a hermit for a while – work, eat, couch, sleep. Luckily my partner enjoys a good couch-fest too! And I’m already enjoying down time with family more than I used to when I was too wired. I’m still smoking cigarettes (one demon at a time!), which I want to quit eventually… and I also smoke weed most nights too, which I really enjoy, but will give that up too if its making me too foggy during the day. Phewwww!! So there is my story. Sorry it is so long!! I look forward to sharing my journey with you. I hope this will relate to others in Aus as there is not much info out there on dex addiction. And it is prescribed like freaking paracetamol over here. Thank you all SO MUCH for your support and giving me HOPE J PS I chose my name as I want to be RESILIENT (and need to be!) and I also dream of being a CAT so I can sleep 18 hours a day!