Jump to content

When the happy pills stop working

Recommended Posts

Hi all


I’ve been on anti depressants for 5 weeks now (I’ve been diagnosed as ‘severely depressed’ since my cheating husband walked out on me and our 3 children 3 months ago).


Last Tuesday when I went to the docs I told her that I had noticed an improvement – and there had even been a couple of days when I hadn’t cried! I felt good that things were looking up. But then the very next day my whole world collapsed again –(he was going away for his birthday and not considering the children’s feelings etc – see previous threads for details)


I felt like I’d taken a small step forwards last week, but since then I’ve been spiralling back downwards, and I’m still going down.


I’ll be sitting at work, driving along, preparing dinner or something and the tears will just well up for no apparent reason – this happens constantly throughout the day – I’m spending more time in the loo at work than at my desk.


I know this is gonna be a roller coaster, but the happy pills seem to have stopped working completely.


Its my birthday in a couple of weeks, then my daughters, then of course xmas. 10 days ago I was making plans for these things, but now I can’t see that I’ll be able to cope with it all.


I’m due back at the docs again next week, I know I’m ill and I need medication but the side effects of these pills aren’t good – dependency being my biggest fear.


Has anyone else experienced this – will the pills kick back in where they left off – do I have to go another 4 weeks before they start working again? Will I have to go onto ‘stronger pills’.


I know the main answer is get back to the docs, but I can't go til monday and thats a whole 3 days away, I need some words of wisdom to help me through this, please

Link to comment

5 Weeks is not very long to be taking the Anti depressants. The active ingredient in them needs to build up and stabilise in the body. Generally it can take between 7-8 weeks for the full therapeutic effect to take place.


I must stress to you however that "happy pills" are only there as a tool to help put you an even enough keel to start addressing some issues that you may have. They will not solve your problems, but they can certainly help you from slipping into a major depressive episode.


Sure, go see the doctor again, and they may prescribe a higher dosage. They may also prescribe a different drug. Unfortunately there is some hit and miss to treatment and whether or not it is successfull.


You need to be very clear with your practitioner about what the last weeks have been like.


I hate to say it, but it can be a struggle to get the right medication and finally see the results from it. But do not quit taking them. Keep perservering.

Link to comment

From my personal experience (6 years on a variety of pills), it is a mistake to think that they will make you better. Curing depression takes work on your part. The pills can help you to help yourself by taking the edge off. Think of them of a stepping stone- it will be nice to have that secure stone to fall back on for a while. Keep going is my advice. Don't judge the effectiveness of the pills. think long term- have faith in them for at least a few months. I hope with all my heart that you feel better.

Link to comment

There are no easy answers. Your depression has to do with the betrayal and an end to the security, happiness and future that you thought you had. Your feelings are perfectly normal and it will take time for you to get back on your feet. The anti-depressants are not "happy pills" because only you can make yourself happy. There is a lot for you to absorb and deal with so you can't expect everything to be hunky dory right away. Once the shock and grief wears off, you will begin to re-build your life and slowly happiness will creep back in. You will just have to ride out the storm. Just know that although it doesn't feel that way now, you will get through it and you will find happiness once again.

Link to comment

Also, one of the best pieces of advice I got was this:


We are always trying to control the world around us, but this inevitably falls down because so much is out of our control. This isn't a sad fact- it is the way of things.


When this natural urge to control fails, our next natural urge is to feel frustrated.


The continuation of frustration builds up and naturally becomes anger.


When we cannot deal with the anger, which is common since anger is never pleasant and we don't like looking at unpleasant things, we retreat into depression. This is natural- we are protecting ourselves from anger.


We could look at the anger, or the frustration, but this began with something we hoped we could control, but in reality we never could.


Let's begin with that.




I hope that might help you too.

Link to comment

TIme is the biggest healer for this sort of thing really. It's not quite a magic pill, but the thought of a better and brighter future is something that you can use to pull you through because it WILL happen. Things won't always seem as dark as they do at the moment. Each day it will improve slightly.


You have the right to be mad, upset and even selfish if you need or want to be. Even if you're not an angry person, there could be times when anger gives you some relief.


But, please do look to the future. The anti depressents may get you through the present, but living a good and full life in the future is something you're in control of without the need for medication. You will pull through it all, you really will. So many others have, lean on them for support.

Link to comment

simply... you know that you have to remain civil with your ex for the sake of the children... i think thats one of the first things they tell you to do... staying civil with him for their sake and being angry with him are two different things... personally i would like to rip his face off for you, but hey, im in new jersey and your in england... (just some quirky humor here... lol)...


lets get back to one of my fave subjects... anti depressants... may i ask which one you are taking?... aside from that, let me explain to you what they do for you... they arent "happy pills" which i think you know... they balance the seritonin in your brain so that you level your mood... in other words, they allow you to think clearer... they DO NOT make you happy... God, i wish they did... life still comes at you while your on them and theres not a whole hell of alot we can do about that... we still have to deal... you do not become addicted to them... in fact, im cutting back dosage with my doctor's help to wean myself off of them... i take cymbalta and ive tried them all!... not without my physicians help mind you... its just that sometimes it takes time to find the right drug for you... you havent been on them long enough for them to take effect either... it takes sometimes up to 3 months... you may want to ask your doc these questions and write them down so that you can ask him/her all of your questions when you keep your appt... my suggestion is to request xanax along with your current meds... they relieve the anxiety and that terrible knot in your stomach and calm you... no, im not pushing drugs here people!... i just know what works and what doesnt... alprazolam (generic for xanax) works... they say there is a possibility that you can become addicted to these, but considering i had to use them, i had no problem cutting them out when i felt stronger... there is no shame in taking these meds... they are there to help you and you have done the right thing by looking into them and seeing your doctor... your general health is imperative at this time for the sake of yourself AND your children... they need their mommy also and are, im sure, feeling the loss of their father... you might consider if they are old enough, to have them see a therapist to deal with their pain... of course, that was the other thing i wanted to tell you... make sure you make an appt with a therapist (ask your doctor for the name of a good one)... you need to talk, talk and talk some more to get your feelings out...


i wish you only the best darling... you have a long haul ahead of you, but it does get better... know that...


im praying for you and hugs... beebee

Link to comment

Hi beebee


Humour is good


Quick medical history


I’m on citalopram and 20mg of temazepam (I know they’re addictive but I’m only taking them fri and sat night and they don’t work anyway!! I was started on 10mg then switched to zopiclone sleeping tabs, which also didn’t work so they doubled the temazepam – I fall asleep usually between 10.30 and 11 but am awake by 2.30 and then that’s it!


I do have difficulty with the therapist side though – I am a very private person, it took me ages to first post on here, and it does help now I do, I think the anonymity helps there, knowing I don’t have to ‘speak’ it I don’t want to, but talking face to face with someone….


I really appreciate you telling me that everything will improve – we all need to hear words of encouragement, especially from people with first hand experience.



Link to comment

Sometimes face to face therapy is not the answer...therapy can come in all kinds of forms, not just face to face with a licensed psychologist or psychiatrist. Self help books often have good ideas (the reputable ones that don't promise instant results), this forum where you can read about other people who have had similar problems, support groups etc. Sometimes just listening to other people's stories can give you ideas on how to see things and how to cope...you don't necessarily have to talk about your issue in order to come up with ways of coping. People have different ways of going through this kind of heartbreak.

Link to comment

Thanks crazy,

Its weird reading others experiences, some are so close to how i am feeling that it's almost as if they a living my life and i can try things out without actually doing them if you know what i mean? I know we all have to live our own lives, and things can turn out differently in the same situation so there never is the 'perfect solution'


ENA is definitely a good therapy for me. I'm babbling now, its getting late here and i need my 4 hours of sleep!!



Link to comment

I'm not sure about the pills, you would need to check that out with your Dr. But Im really pleased you felt they benefited you for a while. Its really no surprise that this set back conicided with his birthday when he neglected his childrens feelings. Even if you were coping really well before hand, the birthday would probably have set you back and his poor behaviour is just an extra burden. It will take a while, but by the sound of things, you are working your way through this and will improve over the next few weeks if you keep focusing on yourself and your children and letting go.

Link to comment

yes... enotalone is a wonderful tool to let your feelings out... ive seen people come on here and reveal their innermost thoughts about their pain and then disappear, only to return to say they have moved on and are content with life... i still recommend therapy though... most people dont like to spill their hearts out to others... for some reason, it makes us feel "weak" and "needy"... well, join the group!... feeling weak and needy after such a betrayal is only natural and i personally think its a sign of "health"...


im going to look up the meds you are taking and see whats up with them... i do know that one of the things that i experienced, like you did, was when they wore off... usually 4 hours later... you were right back where you started from... but at least you had those hours of peace... any small respite from the pain is good...


consider the therapy... these professionals have heard it all, believe me... they are there to help you see what you cant see now...


hugs... beebee

Link to comment


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...