Mumblings of a Muddled Mind

I like to write about what matters to me and to raise awareness for mental health. I suffer from mental illness but that does not define who I am.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Stop..the tingling already!!

Sometimes I feel like this.

Click on link above but you may not want the sound too loud..? heh.

I blame that on antidepressants. More specifically the SSRI variety.
After my mom died I was pretty fucked up. I'm sure anyone would be, having discovered their only parent dead from suicide. DUH. I was put on SSRIs at the age of 14, one year after my mother's death.

I was angry, upset, confused. I felt guilty about the whole situation. The night she died, I was downstairs in the basement after having snuck in a boy *gasp* who lived too far away to walk at the time, so I offered for him to come and sneak into my place and have the basement bed. I got home after the party, went upstairs to where the bedrooms were and knocked on mom's door and said "Hey, I am home." It was around midnight and I was 13..Not cool but whatever. Teens do stupid things all of the time. Her words were "Ok."

Those were the last words we spoke to each other.

I went back downstairs to the basement where the boy was and he asked if I would stay down there with him. I was feeling rather rebellious and I said yes. I was still a virgin and remained one after that night.

Somewhere around 2am (according to the coroner's report) my mother fell out of her computer chair and onto the floor, she then proceeded to choke on her own vomit. Sleeping pills, booze and depression don't mix apparently. Who knew? If only I had slept upstairs in my room, maybe I could have saved her.

The next morning I woke up, walked the boy to the store and then walked home. It was getting late and there was no sound from my mother's room, her door was still locked and I figured she was passed out cold from a hangover. It would not have been the first time. I took a hanger and poked it into her door-handle lock around noon. I figured I had had enough of her boozy behaviour and it was time to get up and be a mother. I was instantly changed forever when I opened the door and found her lying on the floor as I described above.

At first it was disbelief but I knew in the back of my mind that things were not right. She was blue and stiff. I tried to wake her up but I knew that was not going to happen. I went downstairs to grab the phone and called my Nanna. I told her that mom was dead, she didn't really understand me because I was in hysterics and so she called 911 for me. I didn't bother because I knew they couldn't do anything.

I was in my house alone with my dead mom and finally the police arrived. I answered the door and let them in. They went upstairs to check out the situation. It was pretty grim I suppose, because as I was standing at the bottom of the stairs I could hear one of them say that "She is a goner." One cop noticed this as proceeded to lead me outside of my place. "Where's your father?" "I don't know, I am not allowed to see him." "Oh, well, hopefully your family will show up soon." Yeah, hopefully.

Until then I stood on my front doorstep, surrounded by ambulance, police and fire workers and of course, the whole neighbourhood. What a spectacle I must have been! I was living in a suburb full of packed together prefab houses so there was quite the crowd. Thankfully, one of the neighbours just picked me up and carried me to her house and put me in bed. I was a bawling mess and in shock.

So, funtimes.

After what happened I was sent to a psychiatrist at the hospital in order to make some sense out of what I was feeling and what happened. I didn't really feel like being open, nor did I know how to because I learned from the best, my mother, how to bottle things up and not share feelings. That doctor didn't last.

I ended up living with my father for the first time in my life who was living in Alberta at the time. The CAS flew me out there and I stayed because I thought anything must be better than living in a group home full of fuck-ups.
I only lasted six months with him as we didn't know each other, I was a wreck and we both had the same temper. I ended up moving back out here to Ontario and in with my grandparents again.

This time I was sent to "The Best Child and Adolescent Psychologist in the City!!" and I thought maybe I could learn to be open with her. She immediately diagnosed me with depression (no shit), and ADD! Well, this I did not know I had but ok, she must know best, right? I was put on Prozac and Ritalin. We never did do much talking about the real issue and that is what I needed most. I have heard countless people who had dealings with her in the past tell me now that she pushed pills on all the kids. Got an eating disorder? SSRI!! Having trouble concentrating because all you can think about and picture is your dead mother? Ritalin for all!! Later I would find out that it's not recommended to put anyone under the age of 18 on these meds.

Anyway, that's the back story. I kept seeing her until I was 18 when she could no longer see me because I wasn't an adolescent any longer and sent me out into the world to find my own adult psychiatrist. That was a giant FAIL. All the time I was on the drugs, anger and resentment, confusion and guilt, shame and self-hatred was growing and seething within me. I felt everyone else had given up on me, so why should I give a flying fuck, right?

I had family that could have intervened at any point during my teens for it was painfully obvious that shit was fucked up. No one did. That's fine. My grandparents were trying their best to look after the headcase I had become but unfortunately, they liked to get drunk a lot too. Bad scene. I hated booze at this point in time because of what it turned my mother into and I couldn't understand why in the FUCK they would want to drink the same shit that contributed to their daughter's death. I didn't understand addiction at this point in time.

I have been on countless SSRIs for over 16 years. Prozac, Zoloft, Effexor, Celexa, name a few. All of these had the same result. I would get a tolerance and they would have to be upped. I felt like a freakin zombie most of the time and I was doing drugs and at 18 I started drinking that very same booze I hated.
I would go on and off the SSRIs because it was not helping. I was getting the prescriptions from my GP who had no psychiatric training.

I just wanted the pain to go away. Cutting was helping a bit but nothing could take away that all-encompassing darkness that grew inside me and festered there until I was a walking dead person. No emotions other than hatred and anger, but even those were slightly subdued by the SSRIs I was on.

Withdrawal symptoms are the worst. I have been trying to come off my latest drug, Celexa and it's freakin hard. Not as hard as Paxil was because that shit is pure evil. I do feel similar symptoms coming off the Celexa though, they just are not as intense. I have chills, buzzing or electric shock type feelings, my brain doesn't know what to do with these emotions that were being suppressed and so for now, I am just taking my Clonazepam. Ok, that is not entirely true. I have been cutting my dose down for months now and I was on 10mg every other day for a couple of weeks. Now it seems like I get to the third day without the stupid drug and I get crazy feelings like I described above. It's like coming down off of really bad E. I get to a point where I can't stand it anymore and I resort to taking that 10mg again and it starts all over again.

This is frustrating. I want to see what I am like without the drugs as I have a sneaking suspicion that most of the actual depression came as a result of what happened with my mom. I probably do suffer from it to a certain degree but so does everyone from time to time.

Anyway, I am having feelings that I haven't felt in a really long time. I am starting to remember a small bit of my childhood which I so cleverly managed to block out as a defense mechanism against the pain of remembering having a mother.
It's sad, I really don't remember ever having a mom. I know I did, but I can't retrieve many of my early childhood memories of her. I really wish I could.

I have learned to forgive her and find compassion for her instead of resentment and anger. How can I resent someone who did what I have thought about doing a million times since but never could? She was mentally ill. Plain and simple.

Now please, PLEASE go the eff away you stupid withdrawal bullshit. GAH!


  1. I'm really happy that you are trying to get off the SSRIs and go the natural route, meeting your demons head on. It takes a great deal of strength to do that, and I feel a great sense of pride in you for it. You know I'll always be beside you to support you along the way! xoxox

  2. you should see someone regularly to work thru the shit while coming off. sometimes, people are just missing chemichals and need meds forever, sometimes not. its different for everyone.

    i know the withdrawls ALL to well as we talked about yesterday. it blows.