Greg’s Dilemma

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December 7, 2015 | 24 Comments


  1. There are multiple streams of inner and outer issues that are complicating this person’s life; possibly early childhood circumstances that he does not address, a tendency to reach for drugs to “cure” his symptoms (starting with pot), symptoms that he experiences as terribly uncomfortable, a reliance upon recommendations from authorities, etc. etc. One amazing thing that I have noted in similar cases and that when viewed and examined is that this individual while he states that his family and job are all fine and good is so intently inner focused that the emotional needs of his family are not addressed. Living with this person has to be very hard on the kids and wife. How are they really tolerating all these trips to the ER, the depressions etc. Is this at all in his conscious realm of thoughts? He really needs to shift focus from his own uncomfortable state to what is going on with the loved ones around him. A big part of emotion regulation is accomplished with others; their feelings when we pay attention to them can help us be more self regulated. Emotional balance is a social as well as an emotional thing from birth onwards.

  2. Margaret, I cannot believe you said that.

    Greg is suffering from drug interactions which are massive and he is dealing with it alone and it is all power to him, in this horrendous state, that he has kept his family together and is a loving father.

    Some of us have been given Seroxat/Paxil which is deadly and then been given all the benzos as well, and I send all my sympathy to Greg.

    Not to be too critical, you sound just like my lady gp, who also did not recognise how hard it was to keep our family together with all this going on.

    Greg, lost in the swamp of prescription drugs, needs a lot of support, from experts, and, your input was far from useful at his trying times.

  3. I so agree with every word that Annie has said as regards Greg’s need for our sympathy not our criticism. I would hazard a guess that Margaret has not lived with a ‘withdrawal sufferer’ nor an ‘adverse reaction sufferer’ – as it is only then that you can fully appreciate the hell that such sufferers endure. How could anyone expect them to be able to even consider the needs of others while their whole life is in turmoil? Yes, it is very hard being part of their family; yes, the never-ending trips to A&E are draining; yes, daily life is disturbed for years on end BUT THE HARDEST PART IS WATCHING YOUR LOVED ONE SUFFER, not being able to find proper support for them and feeling so helpless as you watch them suffer, not knowing what avenue next to suggest in this ‘jungle’ that is Mental Health Care.

  4. I was a bit shocked at Margaret’s comment but more so his own psychiatrist. Greg’s problems do sound very much like drug reactions but it’s hard to give any advice because it sounds quite complicated and I’m not a Dr. I wouldnt worry about having any doubts though greg thats quite common when no professional is listening or giving you proper advice. Hopefully you will get good advice here and your problems will soon improve.

  5. How very sad to read Margaret’s opinion, it is a typical analogy from someone who has obviously never experienced any SSRI’s medication effects, especially Paxil. The WD process is brutal, I would describe it as mental torture.

    I can relate to Greg’s dilemma and I praise his courage for share his story. Because of his testimony I for one do not feel as alone and misunderstood.

    I was on Paxil for 20 years, one of the hardest medication to ever taper off but I did it. I have now been 9 months Paxil free with no other medication but there is a big price to pay – trying to readjust and make sense of this person (me) who I no longer recognize. Paxil has destroyed me and it is taking every ounce of energy and willpower to “reconstruct” myself out of this “zombie” state of mind.

    Thank you Greg for sharing your story, you give me hope and I know you will improve step by step. I admire your determination, keep persevering.

  6. I totally sympathise with Greg and his loved ones.
    Like Greg, many get caught in a system that does not bother to treat the individual with the dignity and respect they deserve.
    Whatever the outcome, the patient should be given the ‘truth’ of what is happening to him him/her.
    Honesty, as well as being treated with dignity and respect, help with the healing process.
    The lies/deceit that shroud the medical profession to ‘sworn secrecy’, is not going to do the patient or loved ones any good.
    The whole culture of how patients are treated when something unfortunate/unforseen happens, has to change.
    There has to be a holistic approach to how patients are treated.
    One that acknowledges that harm has occurred and addresses appropriate methods on how to treat, without causing further harm or damage.
    Not everyone, has the opportunity or cognitive ability to get themselves out of a tragedy they are entangled in.
    The pain and suffering, that many have had to endure and still put up with, is something that medical professionals fail to comprehend.
    Looking back at family videos of how I was so happy before the unfortunate onset of what happened to my husband and I, makes me reflect on how these medicines damage our good health and morale.
    If one has to suffer in silence, with an ailment or condition, one does not have that joy to participate in activities/events, they use to enjoy.
    Loved ones, do internally suffer because they don’t know how to heal or be of assistance when they are in discomfort or unable to relieve them of any aches or pain.
    I reflect on how my health was back then and look at myself now. How I would do anything to have my good health restored.
    It is what it is and like Rory said we try to do the best we can with what we got.
    This is why I say the whole culture of medicine has to change.
    If a medicine inflicts injury, it is better to stay away from other medicines which may result in worse injury or harm.
    When you are caught up in a ‘dysfunctional system’ and the patient does not know any better, it is very hard for the individual suffering to make sense of what is going on.
    Greg, there is a way out of that dismal hole you are stuck in.
    Go back and read some of my experiences and how I helped myself.
    I know every story is unique but any positive information matters.
    You will reflect on what I have written and will do everything to regain some ‘normality’.
    Unfortunately, many patients live with the residual maladies of what these medicines (poisons) induce.
    I have tried everything I possibly can to ensure that I have a good quality of life.
    I too, have to except the fact that there are some problems or conditions, I have to live with for the rest of my life. I
    It is what it is and I still soldier on.
    Meditation, dietary changes, combined with a positive mindset, help me to cope, the best way I can without feeling so sorry for myself.
    It should of never happened, but it did and we all have to try to work out what works best for ourselves because no one understands our bodies better than we do.
    Trial and error is all part of the process.
    Please don’t give up hope, Greg. Hang in there.
    If I can get out of the entanglement, so can you and anyone else.
    If you can’t do what you use to do, don’t be too harsh on yourself.
    If you are still working and unable to perform to the standard you once were, don’t be too harsh on yourself.
    The fact that you still go to work and contribute, is truly amazing.
    We all have to come to terms with our weaknesses and limitations and this is something I have found very difficult to accept.
    If you come across medical professions who are not understanding your dilemma, it is because they have not walked in your shoes.
    Empathizing and displaying sympathy, demonstrates that one has an awareness of what one has to cope with.
    Telling someone that it is all due to traumatic childhood experiences or traumas, is just absolute nonsense, in my opinion.
    Only the individual, who copes with a medical ailment day in/ day out, understands what they have to endure on a day to day basis.
    It is all too easy for many medical professionals to categorize/label patients as ‘psychologically impaired’.
    This is the problem with the system that fails to address medical maladies induced by a ‘cocktail of poisonous’ substances that ruin a well-balanced body, mind and spirit.
    Enjoy life the best way you can and try to be kind and gentle with yourself.
    If you are not being treated with the kindness, dignity or respect you deserve, entangle yourself from the system that is not helping you.
    Find holistic methods that will assist you back on the road to healthy recovery.
    The road map you create, in addition with people who care, will be beneficial and more enriching and rewarding.
    All the best with your journey to healing Greg.

  7. Jesus H. Christ. I doubt that anyone beset by depression or panic attacks has ever been helped to feel better–OR “behave better”–by having someone point out what a burden they are putting on their family. Most of us know that all too well, and may even exaggerate the burden, till it becomes the centerpiece of a growing, oppressive feeling that the world would be better off without us. Hard to believe an experienced therapist doesn’t know that. Must be an emotional reaction to the unthinkable suggestion that the drugs given to “treat” the problem have made it much, much worse.

    Greg will need to call on all his own inner resources to get out of this jam — but I DON’T think for a moment that he created the jam himself! Many people have an isolated panic attack, or two or three. Often they think they are dying; it can be quite scary. If only someone had just said look, you are going to be OK, but I don’t think pot agrees with you! Stay away from it. At most, maybe offered a few tranquilizers and said here, you may take one of these if you start to feel really awful again, but don’t make a habit of it. Come back and see us instead.

    But too often these days the person gets a diagnosis of Panic Disorder and a bottle of Xanax, with instructions to take one twice a day without fail — creating a terrible dependency that didn’t have to happen. When the situation predictably gets worse, more drugs are piled on. My hat’s off to you Greg for figuring out what happened and standing up to the “treatment” establishment.

  8. I agree johanna pills are the answer to everything nowadays greg and many others would have been better off being given this following book instead. This book will help with the panic attacks, I had panic attacks many years ago and it was this book that stopped them. Its the best self help book I ever came across. You can overcome panic attacks without pills.

    Coping Successfully with Panic Attacks: Reissue Paperback – July 23, 2009
    by Shirley Trickett (Author)

    Obviously greg you still need help with the meds and that is a different issue but when you finally get off the meds in the future you could go back to this book if you’re still suffering panic attacks.

  9. Pot can be a real problem. It can be great fun for a long time, but it will become a problem and once you realise it’s a problem, it’s a really deep hole to dig yourself out from. The answer is not more drugs (those from the Doctor). SSRIs are the gateway drug, they take you through the gates of hell and you never completely return.

  10. Greg I wanted to leave a comment to let you know that you are not alone. Ive been on Paxil 13 years and I am currently doing a very slow and gradual taper- this is taking years and has been very hard. The support and acknowledgement of people like us living through this very real thing is minimal and it can be a very dark and lonely place. The fear of knowing how to taper safely and how to minimise discomfort and disruption is one that I know can be torturous. Because there is no ‘authority’ to guide and support you can end up feeling really lost. We’re all just feeling our way in the dark hoping that we reach the end of the tunnel. You are very brave to share your story, please pay no heed to Margarets comments – they are misguided, judgmental and wholly inaccurate, as others have stated only those who have been through all this really understand. I hope you find better support through this site, you deserve better, we all do. What people dont realise is that in takes an inordinate amount of strength to come off an antidepressant – most GP’s wouldn’t believe it but the process is demanding both physically and mentally and its really frightening. Thanks for sharing your voice, many will read this and sympathise with your journey. You arent alone in this.

  11. This story rings so true with what hapened to me especially cannabis sparking my first panic attack when I was younger. And then a couple off years later being given seroxat because I was still suffering panic attacks even though I wasn’t smoking cannabis no more.I was prescribed it in 1998 and was told it was safe etc only need it for a few months well I was hooked on it for 13 and a half years. Now off it 0ver 3 and a half years I still suffer terribly everyday physically and mentally a 1000 times worse than I ever was and have accepted I will probably never be the same. I take no meds at all now for last three years and have physical symptoms which are as terrifying as the mental ones everyday made still have brain zaps intermittent now had some last night still just as frightening think I’m having a brain hemerage or stroke but not quite as intense as when I first stopped seroxat. Was I like this before I took this medication never it truly is poison that you don’t realise how much harm its done to you untill you quit it.
    I can totally relate to this persons story and for someone to comment and downplay the authenticity off this persons problems with some psychological theory is a joke.
    When are people going to get it taking these tablets longterm especially are destroying people’s lives and when It comes to stopping you discover your in a hell you couldn’t imagine existed which hasn’t stopped in my case.
    So called medical professionals deny the problem exists either covering up the persons symptoms with more tablets or telling them it’s some somatic anxiety causing the physical symptoms.
    I’d like some off these doctors or people who make these drugs to take them for a decade and then stop them and then tell me there not addictive safe etc and it’s all in your head.
    It’s corruption at the highest level as far as I’m concerned playing with vulnerable people’s lives for pound notes and to be honest I’m disgusted by what’s being done to people in the name off medicine it’s bad science and a money spinner for the powers that be.

    • Didn’t do a spell check for above post my apologys its late and had to comment after seeing this story because it hit home off now for another insomnia post seroxat nights kip atleast I sleep sometimes now better than the hour a night I had for two years when I first quit another thing I never had before I took this drug safe drug I think not night people.

      Ps fingers crossed the brain zaps don’t jolt me out off bed at 1.30 am like last night again you could say there distinctively recognisable as not being anything like you ever had before you take these drugs ect without the electrodes springs to mind

    • Karl I had similar physical symptoms which convinced me I was having a stroke. I had numbness and tingling, extreme weakness and fatigue and feeling like I was on the verge of collapse. I had several tests including MRI (which came back normal) and doctor tried to convince me it was a panic attack. I could write a book on panic attacks having suffered them since age 15. These other symptoms were very different and incredibly frightening- I’ve had increased heart rate at odd times to for which I had an ECG. Again everything came back normal so whilst my GP may not be convinced that its related to the Seroxat, I know its most likely related to changes in my body whilst reducing the drug. As someone part way through my withdrawal reading accounts like yours from people who are now off the drug but still suffering years down the line is just terrifying. I know many people have long lasting legacy effects and I just hope in time those things improve for you. We all want to get off these drugs but we dont know what we’re going to be left with at the end.

      • Thankyou Sarah just take it slow I was stopped cold turkey by my doctor after taking Seroxat 13 years that’s why I’ve had such a bad time but it’s not as bad for everyone especially if you taper gradually. Like I said before take as long as you need stoping and make sure you have loads off support round you family etc show them what you have read online. Don’t expect your doctor to have a clue most don’t there never admit there at fault for prescribing it in the first place. Take care stay strong

  12. Karl, well put.

    Those jolting head zaps, sleeplessness and fear come from Seroxat, but, have you a clear sense of where it all comes from with this ‘ever so good’ expose of the Seniors who Still are putting the word out that Seroxat is nothing to fear…

    What do you have to say with a reaction to the seemingly Parallel Universe that Still inhabits our World?

    Also, as a smart guy, do you have an opinion as to why no Bright Spark has asked Sir Andrew Witty directly about Seroxat which sits in their Drug Portfolio like rotting fish?

    May be, the other commenter’s on Greg’s Dilemma, also, have an opinion or two?

    • Hi Annie do I have an opinion why no bright spark has asked Sir Andrew Witty directly about Seroxat ?

      Greasing each other’s palms, backhanders, denial, corruption, fear off paying out, negligence, massive cover up, Spring to mind I could go on forever just my personal opinion.
      The fact no one who has been damaged by this drug in the Uk when the US has paid out millions to people when it’s a British company says it all. These people are worse than criminals because they get away with it every time.
      One day it will come out but by that time due to the stature off limitations off making a claim on the legal front they will get away with paying loads off people off they have harmed. This is because the people’s time to make a claim will have passed they know this so its in there interest to drag out any compensation claims brought against them there weasels and as slippery as they come they know every trick in the book.
      What makes me laugh is how they basically now admit it’s dangerous and it shouldn’t have been prescribed to kids etc because they have had there collars felt and been found out. But we know it can be deadly to adults as well but there downplay it as safe for adults because they know they will have to compensate them also. My symptoms have been so bad I’d honestly and I’m not joking would prefer to have lost all my limbs than to suffer this day in and out for years It’s physical and mental torture it’s beyond cruel it’s hell. There day off reckoning in the uk for paying people they have maimed i pray is coming and they will try and get out off having to pay any money out. Im not bothered about money it’s recognition for what people have suffered because off this drug I want. But to be honest if your left half disabled a few quid could help you out if you can’t work no longer or your left I’ll for years because off what the drugs done to you it’s the least people deserve.
      I’m sorry these people are *** and I hope they get there’s in this lifetime or another we have been made Guinea pigs by the ones we trusted with our health and left to suffer with no help with the aftermath or them excepting owning up on there behalf they got it wrong.

  13. Unfortunately, there are no tests that determine if an individual has cranial nerve pain or brain inflammation/swelling.
    If one has a cerebral stroke, MRI’s and cat scans are futile.
    God forbid, how many people get worse when a clinician wants to get down to the bottom of why an individual is suffering with torturous brain pain.
    One neurologist advised me that the only way he could tell if I had a cerebral haemorrhage, was to have a CT scan of my brain where a contrast dye is injected into the blood vessels of my brain to determine if there are any blockages.
    This procedure sounded too invasive and painful to me.
    I was not going to put myself through further RISKS and unnecessary harm
    When I heard this, I told him that I was not going to do that to myself for him to determine what I was suffering from.
    Till this day, only the person who puts up with the residual symptoms from a ‘python of a medicine’, appreciates what one has to live with.
    Enough about my story.
    People can learn a lot from another’s misfortune.
    It is too late when you take the wrong train.
    The train you take may lead you to hell.
    If I can spare another soul from going down that path, it makes me feel like my journey has not been in vain.
    Please investigate before you have further tests or procedures.
    It could make your condition worse.
    Greg, you have to be strong and research safer ways to heal your depression.
    You experimented with drugs when you were young and you understand very well, the damage it does to your brain. Don’t be too harsh on yourself.
    You are only human.
    These poisons that are prescribed by your doctor are no different.
    They harm the brain.
    For people who say otherwise, I feel sad that they do not understand what the rest of us have endured.
    Johanna is very wise to have mentioned that you have to rely on your own resources to get yourself out of the jam you are in.
    Stay strong and hang in there.
    I understand all to well that many are out there to mock you and bring you down.
    Stay away from them.
    Trust me when I say this.
    Many are quick to judge but not quick to help.
    Your journey is unique and as you find ways to help yourself you will rejoice in all the hard work you are doing to improve your quality of life.
    It is never easy when you are doing it on your own.
    When you put in the effort for yourself, you will look back and reflect on what you did to improve your situation.
    You do not need the approval of those who don’t understand.
    A few comforting words from all of us will somehow lift your spirits.
    Take comfort in knowing that we are here for you and understand that you have the power of healing within.
    Sending you oceans of love Carla Bataljin

  14. The system does everything to hide the proof/evidence.
    The professionals who are meant to take care of us, silence us by ignoring us and leaving us in a lurch.
    When you discover something tragic happens and you are left with professionals who do not help you, you are all alone. This is one of the most frightening and humiliating journey I had to face.
    When I was in pain and suffering, I use to pull the hair out of my head hoping that it would alleviate the horrible symptoms I was having to put up with.When I found blood on the tips of my hair strands, I knew that something had gone wrong. : (
    So to all you people who have left me in a lurch, you will understand that money is not going to make us happy. You know that!
    It is getting justice for all the harm/damage you have caused and pretending that nothing ever happened and it was all in my head.
    Hopefully, they will treat us with the respect and dignity we deserve.
    What would happen if those who failed us miserably, suffered the very same symptoms we had/have to endure?
    I sometimes wonder how they would cope!
    Big Pharma you have messed with too many innocent lives.
    Even my own profession has turned their back on me.
    For what?
    Some professionals do not know how to treat people with the respect or dignity they deserve.
    Caveat – Please be aware of those who spread vicious lies or rumours. They can defame one persons good name with useless, senseless lies.

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