I've been taking meds for depression on and off for 10 years now. I started with xoloft (gave me terrible headaches), then Celexa for a couple of years that didn't cause many side effects, but also didn't make me feel much better either.

I didn't take anything for a few years and felt about the same as I did on Celexa. I changed insurance companies about that time and they would cover mental health so I decided to go see psychiatrist. Up to that time, I'd just been getting meds from my GP whose approach was basically, 'try this.'

The psychiatrist decided I was bi-polar 'spectrum' and gave me Lamictal and later added Welbutrin and Abilify; none of which made me feel better, I was just lathargic and moody. I decided to get a second opinion.

The second psychiatrist decided that I wasn't bi-polar and was over-medicated; her diagnosis: anxiety disorder and depression. So she tapered me off of everything for about a month to see how I felt without meds and then started me on low dose (100mg) of Lamictal. She later added Abilify.

Once again, this combination didn't make me feel much better. By that I mean, I just felt disconnected, not really interested any anything; not lethagic. I didn't feel passionate about anything (I still feel this way).

Recently, she's taken me off of Lamictal completely and the Abilify and now I just take Paxil (30mg), Nuvigil (to give me a lift in the daytime) and Propanolol if I feel particularly anxious. The first week was awful with Paxil, all I wanted to do was sleep. Now, I really don't notice any side effects from Propanolol, except perhaps loss of labido and I sleep more than I used to.

So, the bottom line is, none of this has restored a general sense of well-being, connectedness or hope. I no longer feel as larthargic or as moody, but I do have days where I just feel extremely axious, like today (probably the Nuvigil is responsible for this). I just don't feel passionate about anything the way I did when I was younger which since this has all been going on was twenty years ago.

I also see a therapist once a month for about a year now. He's a cognitive therapist and I like his approach and I enjoy our sessions, but I don't seem to be learning anything that really makes a lasting difference in my world view and outlook.

So, my question to the tribe: does it ever get any better? Have you found a magical combination of meds that makes you feel 'alive'? I've tried a coupld of SSRIs and I think Welbutrin works on dopamine and neither seemed to make me feel better.

I am just so tired of living on the edge feeling like one more life event will just push me over the edge. Does it ever get better?

  1. graham38 10 years ago

     Does it get better?

    Good question.

    Im not sure it does to be honest.We have an illness that stays with us 24/7,and all the meds and therapy will never make you become what you really want to become.

    It will however get easier.I have had sever depression all my life,and I have noticed a great chage in my attitude towards my illness over the lat 20 years.


    I can tolerate more now,I can at times change the way I feel,you get to no that you are down,when you can see it,you at least have a chance to change it.

    It isnt easy. In fact,its like hell at times for me,but tommorrow can be better,thats all we can ask for.

    I have foud that when im up,im really up and really enjoy the high,at times that is enough to get me through some of the dark times.

    Not much help,but jsut something i hope will encourage you each day.

    take care



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  2. cdrake 10 years ago

    I'm actually on Abilify, Lamictal and Wellbutrin and so far it is working for me.  I don't feel depressed or agitated/irritated any more.  I don't have mood swings or racing thoughts, and my focus is pretty good.  With that said I'm tired all the time and like you I'm not interested in doing anything.  I used to be so passionate about so many things, but then I just get bored with them.  That is why I have a closet full of unfinished projects.

    Anyhow, I hope you find the right medication regimine that works for you.  There is hope.

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  3. glucas 10 years ago

    So, I guess it just comes down to the reality of good days and bad days; hoping the good days win. 

    I do feel somewhat better, most days, but I never really feel 'up' and motivated like I used to. I know a lot of it stems from my current situation of chronic unemployment (nearly three years now) and the resultant feelings of lack of worth and productivity. 

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