Lessons from SSRIStories #2: Anecdotal Evidence of the SSRI-Violence Connection

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November 2, 2015 | 5 Comments


  1. I can honestly say that I have never have been ‘depressed’ enough to warrant being given a drug called Seroxat, in 2002.

    When an Indian doctor, whose ~English was appalling, you should see his childish referral to a Mental Hospital, he could barely write, and, I actually sat next to him with a ‘private’ situation whilst he spent half an hour trying to type ‘the referral’. He told me not to leave, until he had finished his one fingered tap ping.

    I had no idea he had done this.
    He did not tell me……

    My mistake, even bringing up my ‘private’ situation.

    Of course, time passed, the ‘private’ problem was resolved.

    We are not unintelligent people; we sorted out our own ‘private’ problem.

    After a few weeks a ‘Psychiatrist’ from the Mental Hospital arrived.

    It was a lovely sunny morning, I was on the beach with my dog, and, his little car drove up and I told him to park in our driveway as we made our way back…..I thought, then, as I think, now, I haven’t really got time for this……I had stuff to do.

    What was a complete stranger doing on our ‘private’ property?

    In fact, all the disasters from the gp, horsewhipping our life, two hospitals, no checks on Paroxetine, ever, by anyone, took place on our ‘private’ property.

    0-8 weeks of an appalling travesty of justice..

    A lifetime of regret…from me….swallowing this pill…..which he got so excited about….obviously, the rep had seen him shortly before this ‘psychiatrist’ thought he could play with me.

    My Medical Records read like a Who Dun It.

    Nobody discussed miles of paper….as all this spun out of control….could they read, could they write…..we were trashed as easily as that…and for a long, long time the sun did not shine on our Garden which became Crow Road……

  2. I know David Healy’s work with Welsh mental hospital records of the last century strongly supports the idea that suicide rates among people with schizophrenia are much higher now than then. What about murders and other forms of violence?

    Julie Woods’ archive of “anecdotes” fills in piece one piece of that puzzle: retroactive diagnosis. A lot of notorious mass killers have been pronounced “schizophrenic” only AFTER their crime. It appears this is also happening with less publicized murders involving senseless attacks on friends and loved ones. Many of these people were under doctors’ care, but for depression or anxiety. James Holmes, the Colorado theater shooter, is a prime example. A lot of the modern stigma and fear of schizophrenics, which by all accounts is worse now than thirty years ago, may be due to this.

    But neuroleptic meds for psychosis can also cause agitation and violence. I read one detail in passing years ago: in the early 20th century the most common delusions among hospitalized “mad” people were delusions of grandeur. (The old vaudeville-comedy stereotype of schizophrenia was someone who “thinks he’s Napoleon”; I guess that’s why.) Nowadays, it’s paranoia — delusions of persecution, which are more likely to spur one to violence. At first I thought many of the “Napoleons” of yesteryear might have had extreme manic-depressive illness, not schizophrenia. But could this change be related to the meds?

    • Johanna that is such a good point, about the retroactive diagnosis.

      As for figuring out a connection between violence, suicide and use of meds, I have a strong sense that this is a massive hairball. I tried to research that angle and found scads of population studies that really only prove that research in this area has many gaps and biases.

      The conventional wisdom in this area, tainted as it is by vested interests, is so hard to challenge with simple logic and clear evidence. The situation is so complicated! But we know that there is at least one doctor who totally gets it, and as long as there is one there is hope.

  3. I don’t know when Doctors and Pychiatrists will wake up. I think they would need to physically take these medications to realize how activating they are. I am so happy that I have gotten out of the death grip of these meds.Many folks are stuck in a spin cycle of drugs prescribed by uneducated sheep doctors. Unfortunately patients continue to get doses increased or additional meds added to a problem originally caused by those very same medications thus making it 100x worse! Im working through a protracted withdrawal that may last another year but I don’t care. I never want to go back anymore . David Healy is the world’s best chance at stopping what will be a worldwide epidemic. Every day hundreds or maybe thousands of people are starting up new psychoactive medications. Goodluck world

  4. What I have sadly discovered is that although we can tell the world how suicidal we become from SSRI & Klonopin withdrawal no one cares. No one is listening. When I was going through Effexor, Trazodone, and Lithium ‘cold turkey’ withdrawal just 8 months past a Klonopin ‘cold turkey’ withdrawal and I’ve been on meds for over 30 years, so this was no picnic by the way.

    In fact, I have never experienced psychosis like this EVER. I became so homicidal with rage while going through E, T & L withdrawals that my every moment I was planning on killing targeted people (oh, I knew who they were). My rage so intense that I was not only planning a mass shooting, I knew that I was going to die in the process, it was expected. And I was in this homicidal rage for 5 long months.

    And no one cares because our psychiatrist just blame this behavior on our so called underlying mental illness instead of the true cause – severe withdrawal symptoms. If I would have found that gun I so desperately wanted and needed you would have read about it on the news. But it wouldn’t matter, because no one is listening.

    Now completely off the psych drugs, I am no where remotely suicidal or homicidal. But who cares? No one. I lost my home to fire while taking my ‘court ordered’ psychiatric drugs: Risperdal, Cogentin, Neurontin, and Ambien. I begged them to treat me without drugs but they didn’t see it that way. And who cares? No one. I had no insurance, no savings. I was left homeless. And who cares? No one.

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