Post # 1
I have recently graduated college, moved 2 hours away from home to move in with FI (first time), gotten engaged and am unemployed. Needless to say, there are some stressful things in my life. I am one of those people that HATE change. Don’t like it, don’t want to do it! Well I sucked it up and decided to change before my father forced me to lol! I am not dealing well. I’m disappointed that I still haven’t found a job, money is tight, and I miss my parents home with my dog. I went home Monday and met with my doctor and we discussed putting me on something to help me since I’m not doing well. I have a hard time falling asleep yet I want to sleep all day, I’m moody and snappy and emotional (poor FH) and I don’t feel like doing anything. After some talk, she wrote me a prescription for Zoloft.
I’m nervous to start taking something but I KNOW it’s needed. Does anyone have any advice? Experience with Zoloft? I read the possible side effects and to honest I’m a little nervous. FI doesn’t want me to become dependent on something and I think he worries he isn’t making me happy. Ugh!
Post # 3
I’m sorry that you’re struggling with this right now. Depression is not a fun thing. Antidepressants can definitely be helpful, but you’re right to be cautious about starting a regimen. You can be weaned off of them but it’s a process.
I wonder, have you thought about therapy? Most studies show that antidepressants + therapy is the most effective way of combatting depression, especially when it’s depression that’s related so much to stressful things going on in your life.
Post # 4
I don’t have any experience with the medication but wanted to send you (((hugs))) anyway. Anyone who’s had a lot of change and has gone through a lot in a short period of time like you would have some stress. Everyone handles stress and change differently. Just remember to take some deep breaths and take it one day at a time. Good luck!
Post # 5
- Wedding: March 2010 - Calamigos Ranch
I haven’t tried antidepressants in the past but I think as long as you stay in open and regular communication with your doctor they can be a real help to people in getting them back on the right track from a bout with depression. Are you getting the prescription from your GP or a psychiatrist? If you’re nervous about taking a-ds, you should really make an appointment with a psychologist or MFT first and discuss whether it’s really the best solution (for some people, a sympathetic and neutral ear, a change of routine and regular excercise do enough mood-lifting that drugs become unnecessary).
Just remember, the a-ds won’t cure your depression, but they might just make it easier for you to deal with on your own. Make sure you’re ready to make the changes you need to improve your outlook.
Post # 6
First, ((hugs)), you’ve got a lot going on. And I’m sorry you are having such a rough go.
And this is me on my soapbox: if this is the first time you’ve experienced depression symptoms this severe, and you haven’t tried more traditional therapy first, I would strongly recommend waiting. I have a fair bit of experience with depression medication (even took it myself for a few months in college). The drugs are psychoactive (the point), the side effects are real, and they don’t ultimately solve the problem that is making you depressed. I believe medication has it’s place in the treatment of depression and axiety, but it should be taken carefully. I think it is waaaay over-prescribed. It’s not at all difficult to imagine why your current situation would be hard on you and stirring up difficult emotions. Finding a way to cope with them non-medically would, I think, be better for you in the long run. It particularly concerns me that your doctor (GP I’m guessing) prescribed them without referring you to a specialist or even considering talk therapy. I know that’s increasingly common now, but seriously, Zoloft is also a pretty hefty drug. I know it at least used to require a DEA number meaning it is more controlled than typical prescription drugs. It has both emotional and physical side effects that you *will* notice.
Okay, that’s my take on it. Sorry to be so heavy-handed. My family has a pretty deep history of depression…my sister attempted suicide when I was young and she spent quite a bit of time hospitalized. In her case it’s difficult to argue that there isn’t at least some physical/biological component to her problems. My parents, however, were reluctant to put her on medication and I think it was the best decision they made. She is very happily married, expecting her second child, and does not take medication nor is she in regular therapy. I feel that turning to medication first sets up a cycle for life long use. Obviously this is all just my own experience, but I would ask that you at least seek a second opinion before starting the Zoloft.
Post # 7
I know how you feel. I became unemployed about a month ago. I hate not having money and I’m getting to the point where I don’t want to do anything too. I’m even considering bumping the wedding to June since I’m not working. But I know something will come along.
But I did take Zoloft years ago, I personally didn’t like it. It made me feel like I was looking at the world from behind this window…it was really weird…I just felt very detached from life.I stopped taking it and started on Wellbutrin. And it worked fine but the bad part was if I ever forgot to take the pill one day I would have a panic attack at some point in that day. Just awful panic attacks over silly things.
Now about 2 years ago I was on Lexapro and that has been the best medicine so far. I didn’t have any side effects with it. And no withdrawals from it either.
If you are or you start feeling big highs and lows in your emotions talk to your doctor about a mood stabilizer, I took Trileptal with the Lexapro and it worked really well. Don’t take it by itself though. My doctor started me off on just the Trileptal and I was just irritable constantly, wanted to snap necks. But with the Lexapro it was all good.
Oh oh and one more thing. As far as the sleep goes, Ambien is really good. I am VERY sensitive to sleep medications. Like a sip of NyQuil I won’t be able to wake up for 12 hours. But Ambien is really good, it feels like natural sleep and it doesn’t just knock you out.
Good luck! Hey maybe when you get the medicine all sorted out, I know you had to move away from your dog, maybe consider a dog for you and your FI. Our dog, she’s nuts and gives me alot of stress but a lot of time she’s my entertainment and my cheerer upper. 🙂
A quick edit after reading fizicsgirl’s post. I am by no means encouraging you to stay on these medications forever. I was depressed most of my life. It got a little better once I graduated high school and then it plummetted on June 30th of 2007 and I was in the ICU for 2 days (I’m sure you can guess why) and I had to stay in a depression rehab for 10 days. It was all not good. But after awhile I started realizing that I didn’t want to do what I tried to do and my FI who was only my friend at the time helped me alot. We started dating and eventually I said life is good I don’t need these pills and I stopped taking them. So just use them as a ladder to get back up to where you want to be and then say thanks we’re all done here. lol Be independently happy. 🙂
Post # 8
- Wedding: March 2005 - Westside Loft, New York
It sounds like your life is in a state of great upheaval now, and it is natural for you to feel down. I have been through both therapy and antidepressants, and I would recommend that you try therapy first because it can be quite effective. I know money is tight, but if there are any local universities, sometimes the students in psychology programs offer counseling for free or for very little money.
If you find that talk therapy is not enough to pull you out of your funk, then I would explore the possibility of trying meds. They’re not a cure all, and I would definitely prefer to not be on them than on them.
Good luck! We’ll be rooting for you!
Post # 9
About 6 months ago, I was just really stressed with school and everything. I was working soooo hard to try to get a 4.0, working full time at a a sucky job, and then I’d come home to a rambunctious puppy, dirty house, laundry to do, dishes to clean, hitting the gym, studying… there wasn’t enough time in my day. Sleeping was always my thing. Easy to do and I was good at it 😉 until one day I just couldn’t sleep. I couldn’t fall asleep, couldn’t stay asleep. And that one day turned into a week, then a month, than months. I was a zombie for 2 months and I couldn’t do it anymore. The lack of sleep and the pressure to keep up everything else, I just thought I was going to crack. I felt exhausted, worn out, anxious, irritable, etc. I went to my doctor and at first I was surprised and embarrased when they whipped out their clipboard and starting asking me if I was depressed, if I was sad, how often did I cry, did I have thoughts of hurting myself, would I describe myself as numb, etc. I told her, "I’m not depressed! I just can’t sleep and it’s literally making me insane!"
She prescribed me a really low dose of Zoloft for the anxiety. I was supposed to take it before bed to "take the edge off" so I could sleep. I was really torn about it at first. I felt like I failed somehow–I mean I should be able to handle this and just be able to relax and sleep. How hard is that?! But when night came I started taking the pills. I didn’t see much change until 1 week later, I slept. The night after that, I slept. I slept great for 2 weeks, and I decided to stop taking it for personal reasons. I don’t even like taking aspirin for a headache! I continued to sleep fairly well after that, even after I stopped taking the pill. I am not sure if the pill helped, it just had a placebo affect, or if it just calmed me down enough to relax and kind of regroup.
I don’t feel bad for taking it. It helped me for what I needed it for and I wouldn’t hesitate to take it again if I truly needed it. I had no side affects at all. It was easy to take and stop taking.
Hope this helps a little. All I can say is that everyone is different and I think you should do what you feel comfortable with.
Post # 10
My FI is on Zoloft for anxiety and he put off taking it for a long time because it was a drug. His doctor recommended Zoloft & Chantix to quit smoking (said he smoked because of the anxiety and it had gotten to the point were the smoking was making it worse) he gave him the whole speach about how smoking was a drug. In the end, he quit smoking and stayed on the zoloft, he no longer has some of the worst symptoms (which made me depressed for him!). He also sees his doctor once a month. Now he talks about it more openly (been almost two years) and come to find out, his best friend has been on it happily for 8 years.
If you are not sure about the advise that your doctor is giving you, see another doctor. A second opinion never hurts. And everyones experience is different.
BTW He thinks that going to Yoga also helps (gets him out of the house, is relazing and exercises all in one) and I have to agree so we go together twice a week for 2 hours.
Post # 11
Be careful with Zoloft. I have a lot of experience with these types of medications, as do friends of mine, and Zoloft is definitely not for everyone. I would seriously suggest some therapy before you start taking the medication – and I am by no means anti-medication. I think, for some people, it is very necessary. But since this seems like your first bout with depression and there a lot of EXTERNAL factors at work here, therapy might be a better option. Severe depression that should be treated with a regimen of prescription drugs is a chemical imbalance, and I’d hate to see someone start on an anti-depressant if they could reap the same benefits from therapy. It is very hard to find the right dosage, you become easily dependent, and going off the meds once you think you feel OK can be a rough transition. Consider therapy first. Also, you can make use of a "happy light" (http://www.sunbox.com) which has been proven to be highly effective in countering depression and is a great non-prescription alternative.
Post # 12
I’m not going to say the same things as the posts before have already. I’ll just say I agree that meds aren’t the first thing to turn to in these situations. I understand where you are or where you feel like you are. But I think your situation may have some options that you may want to consider.
Think about moving in with your parents again. You will not miss them much and you’ll have an everready friendly companion by your side (your dog). I know that it may be hard for you to stay away from your FH, but he’ll be only 2 hours away.
In either case, you should aslo consider friend therapy. Do you have some close friends that you can go to and talk about things that are going on and just vent? I know that in my rough engagement period, my friends were my true support system and I’m very grateful for them. Even just hanging out with friends and simply watching a movie may help lighten the mood.
You probably should talk to your FH before to let him know that its not him that is keeping you unhappy. He may feel that he’s not a good enough support which is why you are moving back or hanging out with your friends more. You’ll have to let him know that there are different types of supports and you need all of them right now. 🙂
Goodluck with your job search. And don’t forget that you are going to be a bride soon, one of the happiest things in your life! 🙂
Post # 13
Thank you for all the support! I started taking it three days ago and I have felt gross in my stomach ever since! Does anyone have any idea how quickly side effects can start?
Post # 14
Anytime you start taking a medication, side effects can start as soon as the meds are in your system. Do you take it with food? Having a little something on your stomach might help.
Post # 15
When I had to actually take my xh to court (we were legally separated and makes about 5x more than me) because he didn’t pay his child support for five months I got frightened because I was one to never want to appear in court. Ours here is very crowded and I’m very private. I got on Lexapro from my doc. She said it would help get rid of the panicy feelings and let me just focus.
I was on it for 3 months about five and a half years ago. Just for 3 months during legal proceedings. It DID work. It didn’t give me any wierd side effects except I don’t really remember getting excited or happy about that much. Like life was just ok every day. It does take the edge off and it did allow me to focus on the issues and tasks at hand.
i would sit down with your health practicioner and discuss pros and cons and see if this type of med (an antidepressant) is the right thing for you to do.
Do you get exercise? Do you get enough time outside (that is important..very important) and sunshine?
Post # 16
As far as when drugs start to "work," SSRIs take about 3 weeks to really kick in. You have to build up certain levels of the affected chemical in your brain before it starts to regulate emotions. It can make you feel queasy right away, though, since it hits your stomach at the start.