Forgot your password?

We just sent you an email, containing instructions for how to reset your password.

Sign in

  • I started sometime around 2006 with anti-depressants. We cycled through Celexa (AKA "No Sexa"), Lexapro (AKA "Make Ro-Ro ANGRY") and a few others and settled on Zoloft. While on a lowish dose, I had a situation that made the small dose quickly go to the maximum recommendation. I started having more trouble with anxiety than depression (they often go hand in hand). I was still cutting. I was not well. My physician sent me to a psychiatrist who added Klonopin. I don't remember the dosage, I had to take 5 little yellow pills in addition to my blue oval pills each day. Three therapists, two psychiatrists and an emotional crisis or two later, a mood stabilizer was added. I was also drinking heavily and snorting opiates or whatever was put in front of me from time to time because it seemed right.

    I saw the movie Limitless when it came out last year, and I was taken back to all of this. In the movie, the little pill gave our handsome protagonist full access to his brain, but all I could think was that the pills that you get in real life do pretty much the opposite. I thought about how it felt to be drugged up and to understand that I was drugged, but that I was unable to communicate it. And how the point was to make the ugly and the pain and whatever go away so I could function, but all it did was wrap it up in a little labeled box that I could sense somewhere in a back room in my brain but that I couldn't get to which was more frustrating to me than having the pain in the first place. And as I got further the drugs started taking access to more things, like vocabulary and memory so that I was eventually unable to hold basic conversations. I don't remember much from this time, but sometimes I would really lose it and just become sort of feral. I also had a lot of physical side effects. Weight gain. Itchy palms. Jaw pain (which eventually lead to years of TMJD specialists, splints, braces, and retainers that I still have to wear). A huge laundry list of other things.

    One Easter, I was sitting at a table with my parents and B. Within a few minutes, I was the subject of an impromptu intervention. They demanded that I get off all these drugs. They wanted me back. I didn't really care about anything that meant I had to make a decision, and this seemed like a reasonable decision for them to make for me. I was still fucked up, but I couldn't tell anybody about it, including myself. It would be good for me to try to deal with the sources of fucked upness again. The thing about all these drugs that no one explains to you is that they don't fix anything, and often they make things a lot worse.

    Getting off the cocktail was really difficult, but I did it over the course of 6 months. This was years ago, and I now manage without drugs. Sometimes it really sucks. In fact, the last few days I've been having some real Artax moments. But I prefer this to the previous terms. I hate not feeling awesome, but I hate more not being able to fully feel what I'm feeling, and frankly, we aren't supposed to always feel awesome. The challenges we conquer give us all our personalities and baggage. It's okay that some of us are heavy packers, because it makes us more interesting or worthy of the want of others to discover our insides.

    Eric, I have no idea what it's like to be you. I do encourage you to push on as you have been though. This is important work you are doing and you're going to be stronger from it (like a superhero!).

    (image from
    • Share

    Connected stories:


Collections let you gather your favorite stories into shareable groups.

To collect stories, please become a Citizen.

    Copy and paste this embed code into your web page:

    px wide
    px tall
    Send this story to a friend:
    Would you like to send another?

      To retell stories, please .

        Sprouting stories lets you respond with a story of your own — like telling stories ’round a campfire.

        To sprout stories, please .

            Better browser, please.

            To view Cowbird, please use the latest version of Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, or Internet Explorer.