Gianna at Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal and Recovery has written a post about reconnecting with her spirituality and working with her doctor on more med tapering. Toward the end, she wrote:
I went for a walk the other day with a woman who could’ve been my client from years ago when I worked with the “severe and persistent mentally ill.” She was so sweet and warm—yet there was a deadness in her that I recognized as familiar from the clients I worked with on heavy neuroleptics. I was so glad to walk with her as an equal and not as a social worker—she is my peer and we talked to each other as such. She is getting tardive dykinesia from her neuroleptic. I asked her how long she’s been on it and it’s been 2 decades. I asked how long she has been stable and she said 12 years. I wanted to scream. This poor woman is half dead inside for no good reason. She is on three medications for bipolar disorder and has had no symptoms in 12 years. I see that as criminal, especially since it’s clear a part of her is dead, just as I’ve been dead for many years but am now coming back to life.
I gently talked to her about talking to her doctor. “If you’ve been symptom free for 12 years maybe you don’t have to be on a toxic drug that is giving you tardive dyskinesia,” I suggested. I didn’t add she struck me as part dead too. I want to help all of us who are being over-medicated and poisoned. How can I do that? This blog is simply not enough.
In response, I wrote this comment on her blog:
When I was at the psych hospital in late 2006, I met
a girl just like this. She wasn’t much older than me – maybe 26 at the
time – and married with two or three kids. She was on lithium,
risperdal, depakote, and probably one or two other drug cocktails that
I can’t recall.
She was so pretty, Gianna, but her eyes were so
lifeless. I know what you mean when you say “dead inside.” I constantly
looked at her as she spoke to me, slow and controlled, as if I could
see her thoughts go from her brain to her mouth. I was always sad after
I finished talking with her. She was only 26 and seemed so dead
already. I looked at her and thought to myself, “I don’t want this to
I also remember my father who, after being on
medications, had this zoned, space-out look in his eyes. The sparkle
and mischief from his eyes were gone, never to return. This saddened me
so much so the point that once he died, I was sad that I lost him but
also realized that he’d been dead for quite a while.
This is why I’m wrestling with whether I need medication or not. I don’t want to be dead alive.
doing a great job with her blog, chronicling her journey off of
medication and helping to provide people with the information they need
on proper withdrawal from medication. Her writing is a constant
reminder of the negative effects exist with taking psychiatric drugs.
Current Mood Rating: 3.9