Hi. I started tapering from 60mg cymbalta about 6 months ago. I had been on it for years (can't remember how many). my psychiatrist recommended going from 60mg to 40mg for a month, then 40 to 20 for a month, and then cold turkey. he said I could take the 20mg every other day if I needed to. what a joke. trying to go from 20mg to nothing was impossible. I took my 20mg capsules apart and found 4 tiny tablets. I started with 3 and kept at it until the brain zaps stopped, then went to 2, then 1. going from 1 5mg tab to nothing was by far the hardest jump. I would take one and then not take another till I started having brain zaps. eventually it would be 4-5 days, and eventually the brain zaps stopped.
other meds: lamotrigine, and concerta (extended release ritalin)
my withdrawal symptoms while tapering were:
-crying a lot, but not for no reason. mostly happy ones, I almost ran out of my sons kindergarten graduation because I didn't want to cry in front of everyone. any touching story would have me crying. crying was an option before, now theres no stopping it and I've never been like that even before antidepressants. some of the crying is for appropriate sad moments (I was never really able to feel the pain and process the sadness of losing my mom and brother 10 years ago 2 weeks apart). I don't really mind the crying, as numbness is the main reason I quit, but I'm hoping I adjust to having emotions and not cry so often.
-completely losing my train of thought to the point of stopping mid sentence with a blank brain.
-dizziness/ head feeling funny
I've been completely off the cymbalta for 2 months now, and things are getting way worse. My business went through a scary time that really stressed me out and I almost fell apart. turns out a lot of the business stress was caused by my foggy brain. I forgot to process $16,000 in sales that came in through customer financing, and I forgot about some orders that were P.O.s that payment hadn't come in for yet. doing the math, I thought I was screwed and that my money wasn't profitable (been in business 13 years so this should have been an indication I wasnt being rational). turns out I'm not in that bad of shape, but I can't shake the crazy anxiety and depression and its been several weeks. in my head, Its inevitable that I am completely screwed and the prospect of losing my business and having to get my first career job as an engineer while dealing with all these emotions and anxiety is completely overwhelming.
symptoms 2 months of no cymbalta:
-insomnia. I've been waking up at 4 am every morning feeling like I drank a pot of coffee. the lack of sleep and anxiety had me at my breaking point. I'm now taking .5mg xanax at night, and again at 4 am when I wake up so I can get a little more sleep.
-depersonalization. feeling like I can't trust my thoughts or feelings. like I have no idea who I am or what makes me tick. can't even imagine what would make me feel fulfilled. not sure whats left of me.
-mood that is all over the place, hour to hour, sometimes minute to minute. I'll actually be pretty happy, then a moment later I can be completely depressed and miserable. anxiety happens any time I am unable to stop the constant negative thoughts that are creatively coming up with all the ways I am screwed. lately, I am mostly depressed.
-constipation. I have never really been constipated in my life. actually the opposite, my wife makes fun of me for how often I go, especially on the ritalin. now even on the ritalin I have a hard time going.
-dizziness has returned this week.
I went to my psychiatrist when I was pretty sure I was having a nervous breakdown and couldn't take it any more. he said I would most likely need to be on antidepressants for the rest of my life. he prescribed latuda, an antipsychotic. I was desperate for relief, but the side effects of increased blood sugar and cholesteral and others, I decided I wanted to commit to getting off all of them, so I never started the latuda. now my main question I'm struggling with is: am I really just a depressed anxious person when i'm not on antidepressants, or are these symptoms of withdrawal? I'm leaning toward withdrawal because my depression was no where near this bad before I started messing with antidepressants almost 20 years ago. I was just a little numb and out of it then and probably should never have started AD. now I'm in deep despair and pain, way worse. its hard for me to picture a future, and any future I can imagine is one where I am miserable and its anxiety inducing. my kids are the only thing that actually bring me joy lately (they are 4 and 6). I am glad I still have the patience for them.