Just say no to Effexor anti-anxiety medication
Just one woman's experience withdrawing from Effexor
It's time to start getting real. I want to start telling you little parts of my story, so we can connect on a deeper level. I want you to understand why I started becoming interested in natural healing as opposed to allopathic medicine.
It may have started with my experience with Effexor. Back in April 1989, I had a miscarriage. It was my fourth baby, a baby I really wanted and had prayed for. I lost the baby at seven weeks gestation, about two weeks after I had found out I was pregnant.
I was so happy to learn that I was going to have another little one, and was already in love with it. I never knew if my baby was a boy or a girl. That has always bothered me, even to this writing.
That miscarriage changed my life forever. I didn't understand why I didn't get to keep that baby. My baby.
I lost the baby the day before Easter. My parents were visiting for the holiday. I had been spotting and cramping a little bit the day before, but with company coming along with a huge Christian holiday my other three children were really looking forward to, I ignored how I felt and kept working.
I lost the baby during the night in my bathroom, cramping, hemorrhaging, crying, and nearly losing my life. I stayed in the bathroom all night, not wanting to wake anyone up. In the morning, I told my husband and parents. I felt like I had failed as a woman and a mother. I thought somehow I had killed my baby.
My Daddy was my baby's pall bearer. The local garbage truck was the hearse. My baby was laid to rest in a Louisiana landfill. We planted a young sapling in the back yard as a memorial.
I called my OB/GYN with the news. She chewed me out for not coming in as soon as I started experiencing symptoms. I should have called an ambulance. I could have died last night. Stupid woman. Come in for a D & C to make sure we got it all.
Got it all?
Unfortunately, words were said by others to suggest I hadn't taken care of myself, and I did kill my baby. I had been varnishing a coffee table with toxic chemicals the week before. Maybe that killed the baby. Maybe I hadn't been eating right or getting enough sleep and that killed the baby.
Whatever it was, it was my fault that my baby was dead.
I went into a deep, dark depression. I was grieving the loss of my baby, but I noticed that some women were able to jump right back and have another baby within a few months. I couldn't do it. I felt like my flesh had been torn out of my womb.
I wanted to die myself. I absolutely felt like I was a complete failure and did not deserve to live any more.
I finally told my doctor, who immediately put me on Effexor.
It took three weeks for the medicine to kick in. I hated being on it. I hated the fact that my kids said I was happier now. I hated the fact that I needed a pill to be happy. I wanted to be happy by myself.
Even though I was "happier," it wasn't true happiness. It was medicated happiness. It was a lie. I wanted to deal with my problems on my own, and live a life free from drugs. I decided to get off the Effexor without telling anyone, and face life like a grown up.
I was on Effexor for a total of six months. I had no idea that there would be withdrawal symptoms. I had no idea that the way I felt after I quit taking Effexor were withdrawal symptoms. I just figured that the Effexor had been masking these symptoms, and that this was the true state of my health.
WebMD lists the following as possible withdrawal effects of Effexor:
- Electrical zaps in the brain
- Muscle twitching
- Mood swings
- Crying for no reason
I did get off Effexor by myself in order to save face. It was hard.