It’s not easy accepting help but I’m learning

I have been doing so well not over indulging with alcohol – I can hardly believe it myself. I used to drink an entire bottle or more a night on the weekends and now I just got through this last weekend with only 1 bottle that lasted me 2 nights. That’s what I call improvement!

I was careful not to start the new dose of Bupropion (Wellbutrin) or to try the Clonazepam (Klonopin) until I finished the bottle of wine. I am committed to not drinking when I take the Clonazepam because that’s why I’m taking it, to reduce the anxiety I feel that makes me drink. My new mantra is I will not drink on Clonazepam.

My depression overall is not as bad because I slept well the last 2 nights due to a combination of steroids (I’m tapering off), a couple of glasses of wine and half a pain pill at bed. That pretty much knocked me out and allowed me to sleep 8 hours, uninterrupted, which is rare for me. I don’t feel guilty that I took all of those meds because the best thing I can do for myself is get a good night’s sleep. Sleep is so restorative that one should never discount the importance of it.

This morning I popped the first Bupropion 100 mg tablet SR and I felt good all day. Not too tired or dazed and I even had some extra energy at work, which was very nice. After work, I felt stressed and decided I would try the Clonazepam, instead of drinking as a means of self-medicating, to reduce my anxiety. That was a couple of hours ago and I feel dizzy and slightly drunk. No surprise, I suppose, that I like it because it took away my anxiety. When I went into the kitchen this evening, I had absolutely no interest in drinking wine. This is good news! Wine has caused me to gain weight which in turn has caused high blood pressure, although I also think the wine itself makes my blood pressure higher. Regardless, I need to stop drinking so much and I’m headed in the right direction.

Do I feel guilty that I’m relying on so much medication? Absolutely not! I went through my entire life not being treated when I felt sick which in turn led me to suck it up when I didn’t feel well, including all of the symptoms I’ve suffered with depression. It’s taken me years to ask for help and to accept the medication and therapists suggestions. This is the road to recovery. I must reach out and trust others. Not be a martyr and try to prove something to myself. I am depressed and I do need medication.

It’s new to me to have medication to relieve anxiety, that’s for sure. But my therapist’s last words at our last session were “don’t be afraid to take the pain medication.” She is right – the fear I have of appearing vulnerable and needy is counterproductive to me getting well. I have to put all my feelings, including the fears and anxieties out on the table and then accept help.

4 responses to “It’s not easy accepting help but I’m learning

  1. Wow. You are on the right track! I hated clonazepam, and found it very difficult to tolerate. Of course, I also drank on it, so that might have been the problem.

    Take the meds that help you and use them to move forward. I fought against medication for a long time and now realization that that was not a sign of strength but of foolishness. If medication gets you sleep and freedom from anxiety then take it.

    Good luck!

  2. As you know I just tapered off Klonpin after taking it for ten years. My experience as a 250 pound male is to not drink on it. I would good a strong buzz on one beer and feel ill on two. When I needed it most it was a wonder drug. Coming off was tough, but physically seretonin withdrawal was probably worse. Good luck!

    • Thanks for the words of wisdom. I do know your personal story with Klonopin because I enjoy reading your blog. Congratulations on getting off of it!

      I am committed to using the medication as needed and not in combination with alcohol. I don’t want to abuse the drug and not use it properly. Accepting this medication from my therapist is a big step for me admitting I need help with anxiety and not just depression. It’s the first time that I’ve focused on why and when I drink in therapy. It makes me feel excited this morning that I’m getting down to the heart of my problem, if you know what I mean. If not, watch for more to come in my blog.

      I don’t know how long Clonazepam stays in my system and I’m also wondering how bad is this medication on my liver and kidneys. Do you know of long term effects from using this med?


      • I was never told of any long term effects from the drug. Throughout much of my adult life I have had occupational exposure to industrial chemicals so it never really occurred to me to worry about the impact of the drug. I was too worried about all the other crap. Apparently it was used as something of a cure all in the 70’s and now as some of those users are getting older and having problems with dementia the drug exacerbates the problem and they have to come off it. I have also been told it acts as a depressant and my depression would improve off it. Of course my biggest fear is the anxiety. The darkness of depression is bad, but when the anxiety takes over I feel like I am losing my mind so I was always leery about getting of the drug. I never took the med as a quick hit stop the anxiety now type med. I was on it twice a day every day. I know that I tried taking it once a day and they effect became very uneven. I have been told the half life of the drug in your system is 18 – 50 hours and I would say that the 18 was more accurate for me as I could miss a dose if things were mellow, but I couldn’t miss two without feeling really weird.

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