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Topic: Antidepressants please share your experience

Forum: Mental Health: Because Cancer Doesn't Just Affect Your Breasts —

Meet and support others who are affected by these issues around anxiety, depression & other emotional effects.

Posted on: Sep 20, 2021 11:22PM

LoverofJesus wrote:

Hello you all.
I hope everyone is doing well.
I have a question. I have never been a sad person. High anxiety at times but never sad or unable to enjoy life. Until now!
Since a diagnosis in May I have struggled with sadness and depression and fear. I took anxiety pills as needed for a while but that did not really help the depression.
My dr prescribed me some antidepressants. I filled them but have not taken them yet. I keep thinking I’ll be able to push through this.
I haven’t taken them because of the commitment that comes with them. They have to be taken every day, and getting off them I have heard can be hard. I don’t want to be addicted to them. I pray that after all my treatments and surgery that I won’t feel as overwhelmed and sad.
My friend says take them. I can wean off and it will help me feel better.
I guess I’m just scared.
Can any of you share your experiences with antidepressants? I would appreciate it so so much.

Hugs to all.

Dx 5/22/2021, ILC, Right, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Chemotherapy 6/15/2021 AC + T (Taxol)
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Sep 20, 2021 11:31PM Cowgirl13 wrote:

All I can say is that probably the best thing you could do for yourself is to start on the antidepressants today. They gave me my life back. Pure and simple. Please know that antidepressants are not addictive. Feel free to direct message me if you would like to hear more about my experience with this. Blessings.

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor each morning the Devil says: 'Oh crap! She's up! Dx 5/28/2009, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 3, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ Surgery 6/16/2009 Chemotherapy 8/2/2009 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Radiation Therapy 12/21/2009 Hormonal Therapy 2/22/2010 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Sep 21, 2021 06:34AM Salamandra wrote:

Do you feel the same way about wearing glasses to correct your vision? They must be worn every day and you never really get to come off them.

Antidepressants are not a panacea. They can have side effects and it can take some time to find the one that works for you. But they are a great tool and help.

You might be able to push through this, sure. Some people do. But isn't life hard enough? I take ibuprofen when I have cramps and aspirin when I have a headache, I wear sunglasses when it's bright, run an air conditioner basically all summer long, and take public transit sometimes instead of walking and biking everywhere. I do all kinds of things to make my life more comfortable so I can spend my time doing things that I'd like, instead of fighting just to survive to the bare minimum.

For me I find that many antidepressants make a good positive difference for me, but some have more side effects than others. Most of the time I take the antidepressants alone but sometimes I add something for anxiety. I'm happy to have the extra tool to make my life a little easier.

Dx at 39. 1.8cm. Oncotype 9. Dx 9/19/2018, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 10/17/2018 Lumpectomy; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Hormonal Therapy 11/1/2018 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Radiation Therapy 12/2/2018 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/18/2019 Fareston (toremifene)
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Sep 21, 2021 08:27AM sunshinegal wrote:

Sending you big hugs - I can relate to the concerns that you have. To share my experience:

I've had clinical depression a few times in my life. The first time I took medication I hesitated quite a bit; there was quite a stigma about "medicating your feelings" at the time but I got miserable enough to push through the stigma to start antidepressant medication. I had to switch meds once to find one that worked for me, but once I did I was feeling better inside of two weeks. Way back then, I weaned off the med after just a few months.

I had a BC recurrence in March, and I also had back surgery, and we're still in a pandemic, and I'm working, and we have small kids, and my parents aren't well, and and and and ... and I finally realized that I'm depressed. I started seeing a therapist in the spring and last month, I started the same antidepressant med from years ago. I am already feeling better. I take one pill per day at the same time as my daily AI pill.

I hope you make the decision to try the medication and hang in there long enough to find one that works for you. Maybe the first one will! But please don't be discouraged if you need to switch once or twice or otherwise make adjustments. That's very normal. And, in my opinion, very worth it. Good luck!

Dx 10/7/2010, DCIS, Right, 6cm+, Stage 0, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+ Dx 3/22/2021, IDC, Right, <1cm, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH)
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Sep 21, 2021 08:39AM ctmbsikia wrote:

I started taking 10mg Fluoxetine a little more than 6 months ago. I was having a hard time dealing with the grief of losing my husband. I struggled for 8 months or so thinking I could get through it, but the physical symptoms of my depression were making me crazy. Ringing ears, headaches, sensitive to loud noises. My ears quit ringing on day 1 and Doc said I can just stop when I want to. Best wishes to you.

Dx 12/14/2017, DCIS/IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 1/16/2018, LCIS, Right Surgery 1/30/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 4/10/2018 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 6/25/2018 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Sep 21, 2021 10:03AM Ingerp wrote:

I've only had one episode of real depression. Took Zoloft for about a year and it worked really well for me. One of my kids was also on an anti-depressant for about a year in high school. I do think depressed people have a real chemistry problem in their brains, and agree it's like treating a chemical imbalance in another part of your body.

Anti-depressants are not addictive, but you do need to take them regularly and you do need to wean off them. Maybe you could take them for a few weeks and see if they help, but also tell yourself you'll re-evaluate after 6-9-12 months. Most depression is episodic--it would likely resolve on its own but the medicine can help *so* much until you get there on your own.

Dx 3/11/2016, DCIS, Left, 6cm+, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER-/PR- Surgery 3/23/2016 Lumpectomy Surgery 4/20/2016 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 5/18/2016 Whole-breast: Breast Dx 3/2/2018, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 3/13/2018 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Chemotherapy 5/18/2018 Taxol (paclitaxel) Targeted Therapy 5/18/2018 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Radiation Therapy 8/20/2018 Whole-breast: Breast
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Sep 21, 2021 10:12AM GoldensRBest wrote:

I have been on antidepressants since the birth of our 2nd daughter who just turned 35. Had severe postpartum depression. Ended up needing an antidepressant ever since. I’ve only been on 3 different ones through those years but they have kept me very stable. There were several major life situations where I needed other meds to supplement the antidepressant. They are worth their weight in gold. It may take time to find the right one for you but please start with what your doctor prescribed. And they don’t work overnight - usually takes at least a couple weeks to have a therapeutic effect. Good luck

Dx 6/1990, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IIA, 1/20 nodes, ER+/PR+ Dx 7/1999, IDC, Right, <1cm Dx 7/26/2019, Stage IV, metastasized to bone/lungs, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Hormonal Therapy 8/31/2019 Femara (letrozole) Targeted Therapy 9/25/2019 Ibrance (palbociclib) Hormonal Therapy 1/30/2020 Arimidex (anastrozole) Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Chemotherapy CMF Surgery Mastectomy Surgery Lumpectomy; Lymph node removal Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes

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