And the big question is “how am I doing?”
My therapy session with Lynn is coming up in 2 days so I always like to mentally prepare for how I will respond.
I’ve been on the Wellbutrin 100mg SR for 18 days. Before that, I tried 50mg of Wellbutrin for 2 weeks, which I did not respond to but that low dose gave me a jump start on the 100mg efficacy.
Lynn will ask, “How do you think the new dose of Wellbutrin is working?”
The answer: My depressed mood has somewhat lifted.
I most certainly feel better than I did 2 weeks ago when I sat nervously in Lynn’s office, feeling mentally ill and insupportable. My own self-loathing was evident in that I couldn’t freely converse. I no longer have such a negative sense about myself. However, I do recognize symptoms of depression.
My quickness to feel guilt and shame is still lingering. I notice an overwhelming sense that I can’t handle bad news or criticism because I will turn it against myself. This makes me want to isolate myself and try to avoid conversation and confrontational situations. At work, if I am remiss in any fashion, I feel like the walls will fall down and fingers will point at me as the guilty one. I carry the weight of my children’s successes or failures. I watch them and feel I am directly responsible for their shortcomings because I am not good enough. This is not a “normal” response from me. I give my kids freedom of expression and I know they are individuals with their own strengths and weaknesses. So, why self-judge myself on their behavior? Why am I blaming myself for my son’s sports injuries? Why do I feel guilty that he can’t play? My other son is looking pretty scrappy lately because he wants to grow his hair long. I encourage self-identity but, nevertheless, I’m overcome with a sense of guilt and condemnation.
These fears have me in a flight or fright mode. Anxiety creeps in by 5 pm and I desperately want a drink to wash away the blame I feel for things out of my control. That is a sign depression is not properly managed. I’m well enough to get through my work days and all the required social interactions, but once I get home all resolve crumbles and I seek relief from the built up mental anguish.
Lynn will ask, “How are you doing with your drinking?”
My answer: I have not had a drop of wine all week, instead I am taking Klonopin as directed, which is once daily, in the afternoon.
I did not do as well on the weekend, and drank 2 bottles of wine. My mission was to be drunk enough to forget the nagging thoughts and anxieties, so I can’t say it was in moderation. Well, at least I did not take the anti-anxiety medication on those evenings so that is showing some control and, in my eyes, progress. Yes, I can hear some of you saying “just cut out all alcohol” but that has been my crutch since I was an early teen. I’m late 40’s now so you do the math – alcohol is a coping mechanism that has served a purpose for many years. I need help learning new coping skills, that I freely admit.
The Klonopin has stopped making me feel buzzed. Once this week, I took it before a nighttime meeting and felt pretty good. I like the sense of an emotional void it offers. It can cause dizziness if I take it without a meal in my stomach, though. And if I take it too close to bedtime, I get drowsy.
The Klonopin or Wellbutrin is causing a slight case of constipation. I’m trying to up my fruit and fiber to prevent that side effect.
Summing up, I would have to tell Lynn I still feel anxious and depressed so I don’t believe I’m on the right dosage of medication.
Since she is a therapist and an RN, she’s got her Rx pad at the ready, prepared to pull something new out of her pharmaceutical bag of tricks. Or, maybe I will be encouraged to continue along this path of semi-better and be happy with the minimal side effects.
My question for my therapist is: If we increase the Wellbutrin will more side effects appear? If her answer is in the negative, than that’s what I lean toward. So far, I’m cautiously optimistic about Wellbutrin. ♥