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Re: Stress, Drug Dependence and Dangerous Cocktails

Posted by JohnL on January 12, 2003, at 17:15:14

In reply to Stress, Drug Dependence and Dangerous Cocktails, posted by Alara on January 11, 2003, at 1:50:51

Cut down on the alcohol, and take Zyprexa instead of Xanax. You'll be fine. It acts as antidepressant, antimania, and mood stabilizer all at the same time.

> I somehow doubt that I'm the first to go through the kind of experience that I'm about to describe, so I thought I'd try posting about it.
> By nature I'm one of those socially anxious people who, in spite of having an optimistic nature, am particularly prone to stress. Once that stress kicks in, I am debilitated by feelings or depression and paranoia - particularly in the workplace. How have I coped in the past? Meds and, more importantly, alcohol.
> Up until I started a new job 3 weeks ago I was doing really well. I had been off ADs for four months, taking Xanax only a couple of times a week, usually on the night before a job interview. Most importantly, I had cut down my alcohol consumption from 1.5 litres of wine a night to one or two middies of beer. This strategy worked just fine while I was working from home. The problem was that I couldn't survive on the casual income and was forced to go out and join the rest of the world. Now I'm back to where I started.
> A week after starting the new job I started on Celexa and increased my Xanax dosage, with incredible results. But then, stupidly, on New Year's Eve I spent the night with my ex-boyfriend, a couple of bottles of champagne, and some very potent hydroponic pot. For the entire night I rediscovered the euphoria that alcohol had given me in the early days, before it started to lose its effect in my life. My brain was working with incredible speed and I had these amazing moments of clarity. Now I know what mania feels like! Of course I felt like complete **** when I returned to work on Jan 2nd.
> Stupidly, I have continued to drink at higher levels again. I have not been drinking so much - maybe 3 or 4 middies a night - but the stress of the job has completely killed my appetite. The result? I am living my life on a cocktail of alcohol, Celexa, Xanax, a little food, and 4 cups of coffee a day. I have lost 4kg in the last couple of weeks from stress! (For obvious reasons, this girl needs an upper in order to function!)
> This week my mood swings have been incredible. I am social, confident and clear thinking one day and am depressed and anxious the next. Yesterday my brain completely shut down. I then had a horrible panic attack and went home, explaining that I felt nauseous and dizzy. Obviously i can't continue doing this if I want to keep my job. Up until I have been working very, very hard - but my intray is piled so high that I get overwhelmed and feel that I can't get my head around anything. Add to this the noise and pressure in the office and I become counterproductive.
> I take complete responsibility for this mess and know that I need to clean myself up again if I want to get through. But underneath I am terrified: What if I can't handle the stress of the job? What if the raw me, without drugs, can never learn to handle the real world out there? Most importantly, if I completely can the alcohol and pot from my life, will the Celexa and Xanax start working again - or have I somehow short circuited their paths? (This may be a crazy question, but I actually have a fear that this may be the case.)
> I want a normal life. I want to be able to continue enjoying my musical education and to enjoy healthy, normal relationships. But once I've struggled through my 10 hour day and taken my meds,it's all that I can do to crawl in to bed on time by 8.30pm so that I can cope with the next day. I take four hour naps on Saturday and Sunday and do not know whether this is the result of a physical problem, nervous exhaustion, or the meds and alcohol.
> Sorry to rant. I know that I have asked a lot of questions and that I may not be making any sense. But if anyone could shed any light on any of the issues above, I'd be immensely grateful. :-)
> Believe it or not, I never get suicidal. The optimist in me just refuses to give in. But I do get scared occasionally. And this is one of those times.
> Alara




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