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Spouse Is Withdrawing, What Can I Do?


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#1 superphi1

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 11:17 PM

My wife is in her first week of withdrawing.  She had me read some comments  from a website to understand what she is going through.  I feel lost and not sure how to help.  She is going cold turkey, we are not sure how to handle the situation.  Her doctor suggested that since she has been off for a week, just continue to go cold turkey and the worst is over. 

 

We don't know how long to expect the withdrawl symptoms. 

 

What can I do to help?  I want to help my wife through this process but nervous about how long the process will take.

 

HELP!!!


#2 flik76

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 07:16 AM

Hey superphi1, there isn't much you can do physically, just be there emotionally, don't put stress or strain on your wife, do some extra around the house, keep the kids out of her hair. If she has any emotional outbursts, and she will, and they will be over the top, don't get angry at her or take it personally. It is important you understand that this is HARD and she is in a private hell. Just be there, give her a foot or back rub, take some of her load for her and it will get better. For me, day 16 was my "omg I feel better and I'm going to make it" day. I am on week 3 and still have a few nasty symptoms pop up, but generally I feel great! Hang in there.

#3 superphi1

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 07:43 AM

Thanks flik76, I will attempt to do my best at helping out at home and taking things off of her plate.  One issue we are struggling with is making sure that every decision is healthy.  Her doctor is suggesting that since she has been off cold turkey for a week, just continue the process.  It is difficult to trust the doctor's statements when my wife told him that she did not want to take any thing that was addictive and he still prescribed her the medicine. 

 

The pain for her is one thing but the questions we have about the side effects and damage to her body is another issue. 


#4 FiveNotions

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 10:56 AM

Hello superphi1, welcome to the group!

How blessed your wife is to have you to help her through this process!

Today is the first day of my 12th week off cymbalta. I, like your wife, went off it cold turkey....it's hard, but it can be done....I'm proof...and I can't describe how happy I am to have done this... To be doing this....it's well worth it, for both of you!

The human body is a marvelous thing....given the opportunity, it will heal....I know that mine is healing... And yes, there may be some permanent "bangs and dents".... But I like to think that just adds to my character, charm and overall value .... Heheheh...

If I may ask, what was her dosage level, how long was she on it, and for what condition? This info will help us offer better suggestions for what to do.....

In general, make sure she eats nutritious food... For the first week or so I needed to stick with clear liquids...broth etc....Gatorade is excellent, lots of water...and supplements...daily vitamin, b complex, vitamin c, and omega 3 were what I started with....

Read the discussions on nutrition and supplements posted here, and we've also got a great discussion going on "listing the positive events" --- because so much good begins to return to our lives and sharing that is so inspiring....

Flik76 is right on about the mood swings and emotional outbursts....with me they were worst in the first 4 weeks, they still happen now but are less frequent and intense... It's the brain rewiring itself....healing....this drug does a real number on the nervous system and as it is purged it sort of leaves gaps in the circuits....think of spark plugs....when they need to be regapped.....( do cars even have those anymore?).....anyway, she won't have control of the moods...they aren't her, they are the drug....

Take this one day at a time, and let us know how your wife...and you...are doing!

#5 fishinghat

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 05:12 PM

Sorry it took me so long to post but I see you were in good hands with flik76 and FN. Like they said, just be there for her and realize that the emotion swings are just from the medicine. My wife was tremendous help to me during my withdrawal. She always would pass by and smile at me, or reach over and just hold my hand for a second. Little things like that are VERY reassuring. This withdrawal, besides so many other symptoms really makes you feel unsure of yourself, hard to make a decision and real insecure. Just be there for her. Your heart will tell you what to do.

 

Best of luck and my prayers.


#6 equuswoman

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 09:49 PM

My wife is in her first week of withdrawing.  She had me read some comments  from a website to understand what she is going through.  I feel lost and not sure how to help.  She is going cold turkey, we are not sure how to handle the situation.  Her doctor suggested that since she has been off for a week, just continue to go cold turkey and the worst is over. 

 

We don't know how long to expect the withdrawl symptoms. 

 

What can I do to help?  I want to help my wife through this process but nervous about how long the process will take.

 

HELP!!!

Hi superphi1 Welcome to the support forum. I am in the process of weaning off slowly this nasty drug. I am doing the bead counion way that I learned how to do here. I could not do it cold turkey was to difficult for me but some can do this.

You are like my DH in that you are so supportive of your wife. It helped my DH and DD to read the info here on the forum. Doing that helped them to understand what it was that I was going thru.

You are in my thoughts and prayers, you both are as this journey continues for your beloved wife.

TC and please let us know how y'all are doing....TheEquuswoman :hug:


#7 TryinginFL

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Posted 24 February 2014 - 07:26 PM

Welcome superphi!...First, I must say that you are indeed a wonderful husband to check out info on line in order to help your wife to get through this trip from hell.  I have no family here since I am in FL and my sons are both on the west coast.  I am fortunate to have a couple of dear friends who have been a great support for me.

 

I will begin by telling you that I went off this horrible drug Cymbalta cold turkey 5 weeks ago - I went off Lyrica at the same time.  Even with insurance, the price was becoming prohibitive and I ended up in the doughnut hole every Sept.  I was on this crap for about 4 1/2 yrs and finally realized that it was not doing anything for me but costing me money.  Fortunately I have Hydrocodone and Alprazolam which helped me immensely - don't know how I would have fared without them.  I have degenerative arthritis in my neck, lower back and hips as well as osteoarthritis in my left foot.  The fibromyalgia has been there much longer - almost 20 yrs now.

 

I have a therapeutic massage every week which helps tremendously and also helps to rid the body of the nasty toxins.  Medicare and supplemental insurance pay for this as long as I have a prescription every 90 days.  I look forward to this more than anything! :) :unsure: :)

 

I will say that the first 2 weeks were the worst for me as I thought that my head would explode, had no appetite and entertained very strange dreams every nite.  I am still plagued with extreme tiredness but am trying to do light exercise and will go back to my aqua fitness classes when the water is warm enough in the pool!

 

Joining this forum is the best thing I have done for myself and the ppl here are so understanding, helpful and kind.  I hope that my sharing will be of help to others as well.

 

I wish you support and will keep you and your wife in my thoughts and prayers.  Please keep us posted as to her progress - everyone here cares!

 

Liz :hug:


#8 zainab

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 01:33 AM

welcome! i am so happy your wife has you in her corner :) i can't say much that hasn't been already said but...just know that even if she may not be able to show it, what you are doing is appreciated. i know for me my husband is going through it hardcore because i'm sicker than usual and not myself in this cold-turkey mess. the note about doctors prescribing something addictive - i don't think doctors really think of cymbalta as addictive because it doesn't have recreational value (to my knowledge) but it IS. oh it is. i'm in my second week off cold-turkey myself and i definitely understand your wariness. -hugs-


#9 superphi1

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 07:18 AM

Thanks for all of your words of encouragement and feedback.  We have officially completed week 1 and in week 2.  She has been on Cymbalta for about 8 months.  She was taking 60mg. 

 

It is very difficult to see her in so much pain.  Waking up and night time are the worst for her.  She is sweats a lot at night and she says the dreams are getting crazier.  She is truly the toughest person I know.  She will not stay at home to rest, she has not missed a day of work.  I am on egg shells because we both travel at least an hour and a half one way to work. 

 

She says that each day is better than the last, which is encouraging for her.  I have stepped up with household chores and taking care of the kids.  This weekend she was able to rest more than normal which was very good for her.  It is just frustrating for her because this was her biggest fear.  She used to work as a Pharmacy tech in college and has refused medicine because they could be habit forming.  When she looked up Cymbalta, she did not see the side effects of getting of the medicine, she saw a bunch of infomercials on the wonders of the drug, but not the side effects of getting off.  The doctor was also aware of her concerns but did not mention the side effects. 

 

The one benefit is the change in our diet.  We are eating more and more fruits and veggies.   She is also drinking plenty of water now. 

 

I am truly appreciate the comments and the information provided by everyone.  I shared the site with my wife and she has gotten some great information. 

 

Again thanks!!!


#10 FiveNotions

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 10:52 AM

I am in awe of your wife, and the others here who are able to work during this process...I haven't been working since last July, and there's no way I could have gotten off cymbalta otherwise....it's been a full time job..24/7.... Rewarding and well worth the effort for sure...but the hardest job I've ever had!

By the way, I had the sweats big time for all the 7or 8 years I was on the stuff, and then horribly so during about the first 2 or 3 weeks...my sheets were soaked by morning...gross...since then, nothing....a wonderful relief to be "dry" again....when I was on the stuff and asked my doc if it cld be a side effect, he assured me no...that it was either menopause or an endocrine problem...neither of which was correct.... But I spent money for specialists I needed have consulted...grrrrr!

#11 fishinghat

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 12:32 PM

You are right there FN. I don't know how anyone could work during withdrawal. Awesome strength and courage to do that!!!


#12 Carleeta

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 12:52 PM

Superphil..My congratulations to you for posting on behalf of your wife and the effort you have put forth in helping more with the housework and care of your children. Your wife is very lucky to have you!

Yes, I understand your concerns for both your lengthy drive to and from work. Both you and your wife appear to be very strong mentally and this is definitely a plus in the cymbalta withdrawl process.

Please keep us posted. ..and Good luck to you both. .

#13 Carleeta

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 01:25 PM

Superphil. ..I need to point out something wish tends to get lost during withdrawl from Cymbalta. .Hope more concerned members and their families read this post also.

When one single individual is going through the horrible withdrawl symptoms of cymbalta, everyone else associated with this individual also goes through with withdrawls (of a different nature of course)

Wishing more spouses, siblings, and partners were just like you..

Thank you for your original post..Others just like you will definitely benefit, along with bringing new members into the forum walking in the same footsteps as you...Thank you....

#14 superphi1

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Posted 25 February 2014 - 10:29 PM

I am thankful that my wife asked me to read some of the comments from people getting off of Cymbalta, I found this site because I was helping her search for natural supplements to help with the withdrawl.  Before she shared the comments, we had a lengthy discussion about her fears with going cold turkey and her concerns about me being supportive and understanding.  I heard her; however, I did not understand the severity of the withdrawl symptoms.  I think it is will help if other spouses are able to hear from others.  The creator of this site should be commended.

 

My wife mentioned stomach pain or cramping pains, is that a side effect?  I have not come across this symptom (or overlooked it), if it is a symptom, what are some things that will help. 

 

On a lighter note, I have pleaded with my wife to remove some of the duties and extra responsibilities.  I have gotten my wish this week!!!  She is acually telling people no and taking a break from some of the extra responsibilities.


#15 fishinghat

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 08:40 AM

Good job!!! She needs to be kind to her self while she is going through this. I don't know about others but the only time I had stomach pains and cramping was when I was having diarrhea and bloating, a common problem during withdrawal.


#16 FiveNotions

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 09:45 AM

Like Fishinghat, the only stomach pain and cramping I had came along with nausea and diarrhea .... What helped me with that was ginger (either fresh ginger root to nibble on or ginger root tea, brewed strong), licorice root tea (be careful, as too much licorice can raise blood pressure), and holding a heating pad (set on low) against my stomach.... Chamomile tea is also said to help, but since I've been drinking that by the gallon throughout this process I can't say if it helped me or not.... Soaking in a nice hot tub with Epsom salts is another thought....

#17 Carleeta

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 10:48 AM

I am thankful that my wife asked me to read some of the comments from people getting off of Cymbalta, I found this site because I was helping her search for natural supplements to help with the withdrawl.  Before she shared the comments, we had a lengthy discussion about her fears with going cold turkey and her concerns about me being supportive and understanding.  I heard her; however, I did not understand the severity of the withdrawl symptoms.  I think it is will help if other spouses are able to hear from others.  The creator of this site should be commended.
 
My wife mentioned stomach pain or cramping pains, is that a side effect?  I have not come across this symptom (or overlooked it), if it is a symptom, what are some things that will help. 
 
On a lighter note, I have pleaded with my wife to remove some of the duties and extra responsibilities.  I have gotten my wish this week!!!  She is acually telling people no and taking a break from some of the extra responsibilities.

Superphil...You and your wifeare very lucky to have each other...Great communication between you both, wonderful understanding, awesome team work!

#18 Donnaprashad

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Posted 26 February 2014 - 08:27 PM

Hi Superphi1. About the cramps. I had muscle cramps all over my body. So bad that I could hardly move at times. That lasted for 2-3 days. I just suffered through them so I don't have anything to tell you as far as how to get relief. I just had to stay still and prone until they passed. If it's muscle cramps she's talking about maybe muscle relaxers will help. I was so afraid of meds at that point I didn't ask for any. I'm over 2 months free of that mess and I went cold turkey too. And I worked. The one day I left early was the day the muscle cramps just too bad for me to handle. But Brighter days are ahead! It does begin to ease up. You're a great husband!

#19 xman

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 04:12 PM

To the spouses out there: it really is very helpful that they understand, in as much as they are able, what their person/ spouse/ partner/ family member is going thru in terms of all the physical and mental debilitation around withdrawal. perhaps some day soon they will have their spouse feel like living once again. For me, the hot bath is helpful. Hope is always there; we must never lose sight of HOPE.





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