View Full Version : I want out... but the dependency wins

06-14-16, 12:15 PM

This is my first post on this forum. Actually, this is the first post in any forum! I don't do this at all. But I have a cramp in my stomach from the tension and stress -- and I'm hoping that putting the stuff out there will help me.

I;m a severely depressed individual. I kind of ruined my career when I had to go in long term disability. I was not only very depressed, but I was also very anxious to see how my life went through the drain. I'm 41 years old, I have a beautiful wife and two awesome children. I'm doing ok work-wise, but ended up in a small company with a resounding title -- just for show. I do most of the work myself.

I take so many medications that I don't know where to start. I take Seroquel, Clomipramime, valproic acid, mirtazapan. It's a very heavy cocktail that I've been on for the past 5 years. I take it at 7 or 8 pm, and after an hour I get what I call my chemical sleepiness. I basically fall into a deep sleep in which I'm completely out of commission. On top of this, I take 30 mg Vyvanse at 6am and another 30mg at noon. Once I feel the kick in, it makes life bearable. But I can't say it takes me to a 10. Heck, it hardly takes me to an 8. I learned to live my life at a 7 at most.

I'm terrified of developing dependency on Vyvanse. When I don't take it (early on the weekends) I can sleep easily until noon. Obviously I'm useless as a support hubby. My wife is patient and a good soul, and I'm sad to think that she got stuck with me. She (and my kids) are full of colour and music.... while I'm gray and sadness. Crap, sorry -- need to be a bit more pragmatic.

I need out of Vyvanse. Just thinking on developing resistance to the med takes my sleep away. I'm so scared of losing it that I've stashed 6 months of 'supply' in case my doctor makes me quit it.

Sorry for the long way to say: how can I get to an 8 (I'll never be a 9 or 10 guy) without Vyvanse? I'm physically lazy, semi-intellectual who's not able to exercise disciplined.


06-14-16, 03:32 PM
Several things I have to give feedback on, but beware that not everyone is the same so my concerns aren't necessarily valid or invalid.

In 2004 April I went on Zoloft for depression. I expected a miracle drug but instead of it helping, it took away the reflex for me to resist self destruction or suicidal thoughts which prior was never a consideration. Now I did have a two-way loving relationship problem that was set to be doomed because of contradictory philosophical idea (religion or lack of such) so I had real situational hardship but one of my friends led me to believe medication would help. I prior had a "drug phobia" that I decided to let down and take psych meds against my personal morals. Well, I told my doctor I was still having trouble so he tried giving me a sample of a benzodiazapine and I was still upset. He then gave me Haldol and I literally went psychotic to the point of within several days of beginning the medication I wound up seriously hurting myself about an hour and a half after taking the Haldol one night. About 8 hours later, about the time it takes for the Haldol to wear off I went completely normal and didn't understand how I lost control. I figured out it was the medication making me crazy so I quit it all and did much better, but a few months later when we broke up for real, I was pretty depressed and I asked my doctor if there were any better antidepressants than Zoloft, which was initially my request per a friend's suggestion, and this time my doctor recommended Lexapro if I wanted to try an antidepressant again which he left up to me without being pushy because of my prior experience. The Lexapro worked great and within 3 months I was recovered and I went many years without being depressed. I also pointed out some of my depression, or at last lack of confidence or accomplishments causing difficulty in life could had been because of my lifetime refusal to treat and address my blatant inattentive ADD. Being phobic I tried Strattera against his advice that stimulants were more effective and found it to be 99% ineffective and once we got to the higher doses it caused me to be overemotional. So I remembered he brought up Provigil as being a non-amphetamine stimulant and it definitely worked better, even to the point my friends noticed but I still felt like my brain had a major deficit. I also noticed it gave me accuracy problems on my motorcycle despite feeling more capable. I took this for about a year but in 2005 I had much trouble studying for a Microsoft certification I needed for a new job but I wound up passing the test with flying colors without any real study and getting the job by October 2005. Thankfully my talent exceeded my ADD but in the end I knew I needed better treatment because I had a tendency to say "uhh" a lot with anything, even incredibly simple non-technical matters which I felt was unprofessional even if my actual performance was fine. By early 2006 I decided to try a stimulant which my doctor happily prescribed, first Dex for 2 weeks then Adderall 30mg XR. The Adderall worked incredibly, my work "metrics" quickly shot into the top 10% and I was getting regular customer letters, which consider these were corporate & government customers, instead of home users, I was quite proud of. I also noticed almost right away my sleep cycle got way better because the Adderall promoted a healthy schedule. By the time it wore off at night, I was ready for bed. Worst thing I did back then was refuse to take it on days I didn't go to work which led to very poor personal accomplishment ranging from house chores to personal goals and procrastination of everything no matter how simple it was.

In 2009 I moved to q different state and lost access to my old doctor and therefore my Adderall. It wasn't until last January I found a doctor that would give me a stimulant (Vyvanse 70mg) but until then I was in utter dysfunction which eventually led to depression. One paranoid doctor convinced me to try Abilify for my ADD problems as it went both ways on dopamine receptors. At first I didn't think it did anything good or bad but I almost immediately started experiencing anger problems which I never had in the past but after nearly 6 months of trouble and getting marked by the doctors as having psychotic tendencies I didn't bother refilling my medication and all my anger problems immediately went away. A year passed of taking no medication and I told the doctor I had sleep trouble and as I knew trazadone didn't work, he recommended Prolixin. I took it at night and thought it worked but I suddenly began having major mental distress and even random physical outbursts which thankfully didn't hurt anyone but I decided to research the med and found out it had a 3-4 day half-life which meant it wasn't wearing off in the day. About 4 days after discontinuing I started returning to normal. I didn't mention it chronologically but in the past I also tried Haldol for sleep alone and found it to cause bad agitation and anger.

What my first doctor pointed out us if I need amphetamines for ADD and I do so much better on them, antipsychotics are definitely the wrong substances for me. Some people do well on both but I definitely am not one of those people. It is plausible one or even most of your other medications are worsening your mental stability or one of those meds is the wrong med in the right class (ie Zoloft vs Lexapro).

While I can't diagnose your condition, I presume if you are believing you need to take medication that you have some kind of neurological imbalance. To make an as simple as possible example, if your brain has an impaired dopamine function causing ADD, it makes sense that if Vyvanse increases dopamine function to normal which in turn makes you function like a normal personal, how coukd you defend discontuation or call being "normal" a damaging dependency. I may be biased from my own personal experience but I suspect at least some of your other medications is causing some kind of awkward feeling that is making you uncomfortable.

I would also point out that while I have never tried "meth", due to my particular region I have met people who have extensive drug abuse histories. I asked several of them to compare Adderall to meth and they all said almost the exact same thing. They said that Adderall was like a super clean pharmaceutical grade meth, but it wasn't strong enough to get you high. I asked them so does that mean methferls dirty? and they said yes but it makes you high as **** and Adderall won't and they typically made comments like they do drugs to grt high, not to get better grades. Obviously meth is a highly addictive drugand it's mentally unhealthy to get high on anything and unanimously per their own admission getting high on meth led to extremely poor decision making and judgement which was something their addiction didn't care about. At least in my eyes, that is the very distant difference between healthy medical treatment and an actual substance dependence. Would you completely quit taking your antidepressant when you are depressed even if you know it is effective without side effects? Would you post on the internet about being "hooked" on Lexapro? Presuming not, why would you believe taking Vyvanse and it working to be a "problem" while you don't have similar concern about antidepressants?

I firmly believe that if an amphetamine ADD medication works and you don't have compulsions to take more than prescribed, they are extremely safe and appropriate. Now ADD medications sometimes have a side effect of causing a little higher than normal (for an average person) euphoria but also treat their ADD/ADHD symptoms well enough their life function is considerably improved. I am not one of those people and whatever euphoric effects it does have on me I see as lowering my natural dysphoria (normally feel super mucky/bland) to a closer to normal sense but not euphoric compared to an unaffected normal person. Even if you do experience a sprightly higher than normal euphoria from the medication, I still don't see the problem if you don't take more than prescribed or have compulsions. I am dependent on Vyvanse or Adderall to feel and function healthy, not because I crave to get high and I don't crave to get high.

If the Vyvanse helps you and it doesn't give you abusive compulsions, please and with the approval of your doctor, continue taking the Vyvanse. It is up to you, but you might want to open up the dialogue with your doctor that something in your slew of medications might be hurting you or not needed because of another medication you are taking. I feel strongly that ADD is easy to confuse with psychotic disorders for several reasons but in my case inability to keep track of any kind of task or sustained thought without getting distracted or forgetting all about, in the end ADD and ADHD can cause an instability in your daily life that is attributed to your inability to be coordinated with all kinds of daily tasks and interaction which typically leads to failing accomplishments which leads to actual situational problems.

06-14-16, 03:38 PM
You weren't kidding when you said you were on some heavy stuff. Have you been diagnosed as Bi-polar? Anyways, from what you have to use to get through each day, it would be hard to make a suggestion. I would need to know the whole root cause of all of this just to see what other option or idea I could give you. For now just keep doing what you need to do for now. Hopefully someone here might be able to shed some light on your dilemma.

06-14-16, 04:10 PM
Many of us are dependent on meds to live a functional and satisfying life. If we didn't need any treatment we probably would not have been diagnosed with adhd.

Is there a reason why you want to quit apart from the fear of dependency?

06-14-16, 07:27 PM
Thanks for responding to my post. My wish is to get out of all meds. I can't. I know that -- but the one that feels the most oppresive is Vyvanse. I guess it's because its the most blatant display of my lack of health. Without it I feel lost... immediately. I have nightmares with my doctor telling me he can't continue prescribing it. I even had an issue with the pharmacist because the guy thought I shouldn't take so much... go figure.

I'd love to be the exercise guy, or the yoga dude, or have profound meditation abilities to replace Vyvanse with. But I don't, and don't even know where to look.

Thanks for reading.

06-14-16, 11:58 PM
Thanks for responding to my post. My wish is to get out of all meds. I can't. I know that -- but the one that feels the most oppresive is Vyvanse. I guess it's because its the most blatant display of my lack of health. Without it I feel lost... immediately. I have nightmares with my doctor telling me he can't continue prescribing it. I even had an issue with the pharmacist because the guy thought I shouldn't take so much... go figure.

I'd love to be the exercise guy, or the yoga dude, or have profound meditation abilities to replace Vyvanse with. But I don't, and don't even know where to look.

Thanks for reading.

It seems to me that you want to get rid of vyvanse because it's the one that helps you the most, because it gives you immediate benefits. I know that can be scary bur I'm not sure it makes a lot of sense. There are many hood reasons to stop meds like side effects but if you don't have any clinical problems why do you want to deprive yourself of something that helps you? II'm sure it's not like with meds your life is too easy anyway...

If you had high blood pressure and took a bp lowering med that worked well would you get rid of it?

Exercise and meditation apart from adequate sleep and good nutrition csn help you only to an extent. It might be worth trying them in addition to meds. I could never stick to an exercise routine or any routine without meds but doing both probably works the best and has the most benefit. Maybe it will help you reduce your dose if that's what you really want.

Behavioural strategies can go a long way but again I could implement them only when I was finally medicated. They still help me though even now when I can't take meds.

06-25-16, 07:13 AM
Hey! I'm really new here, I actually only registered just now so that I could reply to this!
I just wanted to put my two cents in, because I've felt this way as well. I used to want to get off meds because I just had it in my head that they were bad for me, and that they were unnecessary. It wasn't until later after some good quality therapy and self loving that I realised the reason I wanted to get off the meds is because I didn't want to believe I needed them, but if I didn't need them then I would have been a useless mess, and because I had always been a useless mess, it was easy to tell myself that I didn't need the meds because I was used to feeling like a hopeless waste of space and didn't think I had any excuse to think better of myself.
You might be battling different demons that I, but when you're not functioning well without your meds, be kind to yourself. You aren't useless, you aren't dependent. You have a faulty piece of equipment that hasn't been properly primed and prepared for the day. When I get dehydrated and feel bad because of it I feel a bit down on myself for not drinking enough and not looking after myself, but I don't feel scared because I need water or worried that I can't function without it.