It has been one year and five months since I started taking aripiprazole, and it has been ten months since I went on Prozac.
These past year has been the best for my mental health since I can remember. Not just because of medicine, but because I truly found what works for me on my recovery journey and I have now a toolbox of things that help.
But today I don’t want to talk about meditation, podcasts, books and workbooks that help me every day. Nah. I want to talk about how grateful I am that I found pills that help me manage my emotions and symptoms of BPD.
At this point, they are secondary behind my other tools that are of most use but still crucial. Listen, if we are going to talk about pharmaceutical drugs, let’s be honest about it.
First, I will list out the pros and then the cons of taking both medications so you get a feel for how I am feeling right now and where I am.
- I am less reactive, meaning I don’t scream anymore. Seriously, I haven’t screamed at anyone or anything for over a year. It’s fabulous.
- I am not suicidal anymore and I don’t self-harm. This one is big as I was practically walking around with bloody knuckles before I went on antipsychotics.
- I don’t have paranoid thoughts anymore and I don’t experience mild hallucinations. Bye-bye crawling spiders and demons that haunted me in the dark.
- I am no longer experiencing major depression. Prozac is a gift from science.
- My heart randomly starts beating fast whenever it pleases. This is really scary when you are just minding your own business and your heart just goes crazy.
- I feel emotional numbness and am, therefore, almost unable to cry. In the past year and a half, I maybe cried three times, and even that was just a few tears.
- Possible long-term brain damage and a possible heart attack. Yeah, this one is pretty scary.
Overall, I find the pros pretty convincing and am obviously still sticking with them.
One thing me and my psychiatrist made sure of was to remember that this is temporary. I am not going to be taking these pills forever, as they are just a bandage.
THIS is where my toolbox comes in handy. Because pills can only do so much, everything else rests in my hands. But I talked about these things before (read here) so I will not go further today.
The biggest pro that I stand behind is that I am not suicidal anymore. As you know, since I wrote about it here, I really, really struggled with suicidal thoughts and self-harm. But I grew since then, and I learnt how to handle myself in case that happens again.
As of today, my plan is to go off my medication in October when I see my psychiatrist again. I am prepared for the withdrawal phase but I also know that I have enough knowledge now to survive without them.
It is my decision and I thought through it for a long time. As I said, my toolbox is full and I have a support system around me.
I am, obviously, not a doctor but if you have any questions about my personal experience with taking antipsychotics and Prozac, let me know in the comments section. I would love to answer them.
If you feel called to support my work, please consider buying me a cup of cappuccino. It helps me greatly.