Brain zaps, instant torrential tears, daily angries — 15 straight years on Cymbalta and my withdrawal story

15 years with mental illness. The post-partum depression that never went away.

Kid one, a little postpartum, a little counseling, some anti-depressants, cured. Ish. Kid two, a little postpartum, a little counseling, some more anti-depressants, good to go. Kid three, depression death sentence. Bipolar. Cocktail of medications, life sentence of meds.

It all got really bad in 2007, I mean really bad. I had struggled with depression after the birth of each of the kids but that jaunt on the depression boat wasn’t going away, and it never would. I had long gotten over the stigma of having to take medication every day but I never really thought about whether I’d need to take it every day for the rest of my life. Now I’m nearing my 50th birthday and that feels like a death sentence or a life sentence. After 15 years of being on every anti-depressant, anti-psychotic and bipolar med, I suddenly want freedom from chemicals. I’ve only shared this with my son who also suffers from depression and with my husband. Hubby is strongly opposed. I guess he readily admits my failure to exist as a human being without chemicals changing my composition on the daily. My son who has been there and done that understands my perspective, has been there, but sees it isn’t going well. He has volunteered to be my “daily angry” text therapist and checks on me regularly. He asks me open ended questions about how I’m doing and asks really pointed non-judgmental questions about whether it’s really so bad to pop a pill and the morning and asks me to dig deep about why that’s so bad.

Here’s why it’s so bad. My 50th birthday is next month. Maybe I didn’t mind the first 50 years being controlled by meds but maybe I believe that the rest of the world survives without taking pills every single day and can’t I just get by with diet and exercise and coping mechanisms?

Plus, it’s the brain zaps. Cymbalta gives you the brain zaps death sentence. Want to get off? We will torment and terrorize you with brain zaps for the rest of your life. We’ll make you sick, tired, and give you electric shocks if you try to stop. Go ahead, try, we dare you, you crazy bitch.