Serious trigger warning.
I want to talk about something that happened to me a few weeks ago – something which I’m only now mentally prepared and willing to talk about… even on here.
(Just a quick post-edit: I thought I was, but seeing as I found this tough to write, I think it’s fair to assume I’m not. :/)
But beforehand, I want to give you a little bit of a backstory. About a week before Christmas, I went to see my GP, for the last time that year. It was only a ‘check-up’; well, I say that like it was nothing, but to be honest, it was everything because I was struggling. I wasn’t wasn’t feeling the festivities or goodwill, that’s for sure.
As a result, my doctor prescribed me a stronger dose of antidepressants to take (100mg Sertraline – double what I was previously on), and the idea was to go back in four weeks for another appointment.
(…you might be able to see where this is going to go already.)
For the most part, these tablets were effective. Aside from a few “off-days” here and there, I felt great. Happier. More… normal than I’d ever felt. The tablets were working – even after the first week… and the second… and third… and forth…
But then, I ran out of tablets to take. And here were some of the problems that were going through my mind at that point.
1) I couldn’t exactly get an emergency appointment at my doctors’ surgery, and waiting times for appointments are at least three weeks.
2) I turned 19 on the 2nd Jan. Now, for any prescription of tablets in the UK, I could get tablets for free until I turned 19, and then I had to pay for them. However, for someone who doesn’t have a job, I didn’t know how I could pay for them. Sure, I could have asked my parents, but I was too nervous. I’m not very good at asking for things.
And 3), the most challenging obstacle, was that I was terrified. The thought of going to my doctors surgery once, to see my GP (who I’d only spoken to once beforehand, as all the other doctors keep leaving my surgery) and admit that I need help once more just terrified me. Even thinking about it now makes my hands shake.
I know it might sound ridiculous to you, but for me to see my doctor and admit that I have a problem requires serious courage and strength.
So, in the end, I took the decision to do exactly what you’re not supposed to do, which is to stop taking my tablets. And straight away, I started to feel weird. I’d get an occasional tingling sensation on my face. I started getting these periods where I felt like I could run 100m in 5 seconds. I felt physically ill every day. I suffered from migraines. I distanced myself even further away from my friends. My social anxiety increased once more.
But something that rang alarm bells was my dreams – or should I say nightmares? Because that’s what they were. I’d have dreams where I was being locked up in a mental health institution or prison cell and being forced onto a bed by numerous people during a mental breakdown. (There were other dreams too, but I don’t know if I’d be able to talk about them. But it was fucking terrifying).
And after two weeks of feeling like this, I couldn’t do it anymore. I spent my entire day in bed, and when my mum checked up on me, I broke down and told her everything that had been going on.
To be honest, it was a good thing, because after my mental meltdown, my parents contacted my doctor for me, and was able to get me a repeat prescription to prevent this from happening again.
And I’m so thankful because I’m now taking my tablets again, and I feel better! xD
I’m sorry this was such a long post, but it’s just one of these things where you have to share with someone, just to get it off your mind. And more importantly, I suppose I wanted to reiterate this important message:
“Please don’t do what I did.”