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Re: I was gone but now I'm back

Posted by Lorraine on August 16, 2001, at 23:25:22

In reply to Re: Update Lorraine, posted by Elizabeth on August 11, 2001, at 13:06:14

elizabeth, shelli:

I was in North Carolina for a couple of days with my daughter. I just returned this afternoon and will try to catch up on the posting. I can't really say how I'm doing exactly. It's not completely clear to me. For one thing, I am pretty much done with hyperventilating. It seems to have gone away and I don't know if this is b/c I quit the estrogen cold turkey (on the theory that estrogen dominance may have been causing the problem) or if this is Parnate. I was taking 5mg Parnate 2x day and 300 Neurontin 3x day. Then I found that the sleep wasn't so great and my pdoc suggested increasing the Neurontin at bedtime. So I increased my nightly dose to 500 then 600 mg, but found myself groggy in the morning--which led me to drop my am dose of Neurontin. Then I found I was getting groggy in the afternoon as well so I dropped the Neurontin in the afternoon also. It's only been 2 days of this adjustment and I'm jet lagged major today. Time will tell. Seems odd to me though that the stimulant effect of the Parnate seems to be diminishing.

Shelli: I can see you've been through the wringer on this. I think it's terribly difficult to work and do drug trials. I also sympathize with you about lousey drug starts and how the pdocs would like for you to stay on the trial way beyond the normal limits of endurance. Too bad your pdoc is out of town and can't help you think it through.

responding to Elizabeth 8/11 post:

> (re Recovery Inc.)
> But it's a self-help group, there isn't a psychologist or anyone like that involved?

Correct and the last one I attended impressed upon me the importance of the participants in the group on its value (little value in that last one).

> > > Yes; I was very into CBT for a while. I was convinced by the research that it was superior to other types of psychotherapy and that I needed to try it. And maybe it was a good idea to try, but in the end it didn't do much good for my depression.

Sounds like a lot of drugs I've tried:-). Seriously, I suspect it's like a lot of the non-med models, it works for some of the people some of the time. You know, like meditation works for some people and breathing exercises work for some people. I have no idea about the strength of the claim that thoughts are responsible for emotions or emotions are responsible for thoughts. How can we possibly know any of this? We are only an N of 1, but it's the 1 that matters most to us:-) I think the "experiments" using control groups with this or other talk therapy are just not useful. It either works for the individual or not.

> > >I did learn some tricks that have helped a lot with the panic attacks.

Do those techniques still work for you? Just curious. I've done the breathing stuff and it works for about 15 minutes.

> > > I do think that there are the physical and the mental aspects. Now, when physical is the only issue, I wouldn't expect it to be of too much help. But lots of times, both mental and physical is involved.
> What do you mean by all this? It's a little confusing to me.

What i mean is that I believe that there is sometimes just a mental component, sometimes just a physical component and sometimes both. Take Shelli and me, for instance, we both have had substantial child hood issue to sort through. In my case, once I had "finished" my therapy and felt these childhood issues were ironed out, I was left with a depression that was not responsive to further talk. I needed the talk therapy, but I also needed meds. The need for meds, therapy or both varies by the individual I think.

> > Turns out there are people who are insensitive to side effects also--that might be you?
> Not especially. I notice them, but I tolerate them. It's just stoicism, nothing more.

I find I can be stoic about certain side effects, like dry mouth, constipation, mild naseau and so forth, but am intolerant of others--like dramatic weight gain or sexual dysfunction.

[re effexor] > 150 is a reasonable dose, not unusually low. Why did you stop taking it?

40 lbs and sexual dysfunction--and marital difficulties associated therewith :-)

[re retrospective mood chart]
> Except for the Word part, I'd like to see that, although charting retrospectively isn't ideal.

I agree. But it's actually not so bad. I have the file from my previous pdoc who notes my moods and life events during our visits and then I also was on Effexor for a long time (more than a year)--so we'll see. I have a fairly good memory of how bad things were or weren't and the tracking is just by month so it can be quit useful without requiring the amount of detail that a daily chart does. I'll let you know the results.
> > It's one thing to not be interested in hanging out with the other kids; it's another to not fit in and hunger for it. I was the latter. It sounds like you were the former.
> Not generally, but when I was depressed I was. I usually (when not depressed) come out right in the middle when I take those tests that are supposed to rate how extroverted or introverted you are. I have friends, I like to party and so forth, but I also need quite a lot of time to myself, and a lot of my interests and hobbies are pretty solitary.

Me too actually.

> > That is a stroke of luck--genetic luck--to have found been inner directed rather than outer directed. That's great.
> How so?

I meant that some people are more internally driven while others are more dependent on others for their sense of self. You seemed to fall in the former camp--which is lucky if you were an odd duck of sorts.

> > >I take Klonopin for RBD, and it works great.

What's RBD?

> [re rapid onset of effects]
> Parnate has a stimulant-like action that you may notice very shortly after starting it. I think that this should be looked into further; it might be the reason why some people have spontaneous episodes of hypertension on Parnate.

Ok--more unusual stuff my pdoc said: He says that hypertensive epiosodes (not hypertension) is not common among people who are down-regulated, but are instead more common among people who are up-regulated (over-stimulated). He also says to try small amounts of the forbidden food at home with the antidote handy to see how I'll do with them. I'm fine with cheddar and jack cheeses so far.

How's your desipramine going, elizabeth? Are you augmenting with anything new?





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