All of the Alternative to Meds Center staff was incredible. There is no way I can express this enough … Thank you to the whole Alternative to Meds Center staff. I’m so very thankful to each and every person there!
I’m going to write about the experience I had at Alternative to Meds Center to share my story with others.
I went to Alternative to Meds Center to get help in for antidepressant withdrawal. Prior to coming into the Center I had been experiencing serious adverse Prozac side effects and was not able to socialize, work, I could hardly get out of my bed. I didn’t have any clue what was happening to me and thought that I was crazy and could never feel well again. After going to the doctor for help, the doctor just continued to raise the dose and also added benzodiazepines that were meant to offset the antidepressant side effects. My doctor did not any answers as to why I may have been feeling like this and experiencing all these symptoms. Eventually, I came to realize by myself that the Prozac was what had been affecting me in such a bad way. Then my doctor told me that it would be okay to go off of it cold turkey. But I actually knew better so I attempted tapering myself off from the medication, way too fast, which produced more side effects and additional symptoms. I was scared and desperate.
I called a hot-line for addiction with the hope that they would lead me in the direction that could help me through Prozac withdrawal. I spoke to a woman from the hot-line who told me that she knew about a wonderful place and that someone would call back. Within two minutes I received the call back. Diane called to tell me about Alternative to Meds Center, she also explained to me the reasons why I had been experiencing some of these symptoms. Immediately, she eased my mind. Finally, a person that could actually give me real answers and understood what I was going through and the things I was telling her about.
Two days after that, I was on a plane and I arrived at Alternative to Meds Center. My driver on the way there was very reassuring and the house was absolutely beautiful. I was really scared to be that far away from my home and was feeling desperate to go home. Right away I went to one of the staff members who talked with me and he knew exactly how I was feeling and shared his own personal story with me and about how he safely was withdrawn from the medications he was on. This made me feel very reassured. Continually I went to different members of the staff who all had no problems dropping whatever they were doing at the time to come explain to me what was going on and what I should expect. This was an important part of my recovery.
Alternative to Meds Center taught me how antidepressants work and the extreme importance of nutrition all of the time, not only while I’m in recovery. I helped out a lot in the kitchen, and the fantastic cook taught me several different ways to cook healthily, not to mention that he has an innate ability to pull me out when I’m in a pit and cheer me up. There were various speakers that we had come in which only enhanced the program.
All of the Alternative to Meds Center staff was incredible. There is no way I can express this enough. Every single staff member always had something helpful to provide me with, even if it meant getting me out of the house and into the community to talk about regular life rather than focus all of my attention on withdrawal. I requested regular therapy sessions and my therapist/counselor never once hesitated to talk to me. He also helped me to find support groups that I could attend after I returned home and he never judged the way I was feeling. This meant so much to me. The founder/owner was also very encouraging and involved. He knew the way we were all feeling and what we were going through which made the program even better and more helpful. I’m so grateful for this program that he has created and continuously is improving.
The doctor that I was working with was extraordinarily helpful. Not only did he offer me information on the complications I was having but he was also compassionate and he listened with genuine interest about what I told him. The food allergy tests and blood tests were very extensive, informative and also added some “science” to what I was going through.
I would encourage anyone to go to this center who is considering psychotropic medication withdrawal. This endeavor is definitely serious and should never be attempted on your own. Withdrawal symptoms and side effects that I experienced while I was home were torturously painful and I wish that I had never attempted to wean off by myself. However I was very glad that I was able to come to Alternative to Meds Center and get help for this traumatic experience. I will be forever grateful, as they truly helped me in many, many ways. It’s important to seek help and ask questions. It takes courage to ask to get help.
As a person with strong convictions, I am not the type of person that would give a testimonial if it wasn’t something that I truly believe in. I feel that it’s important to talk about this and to let other people know they are NEVER alone and that help and hope is always there. I searched endlessly to try to find someone or something that understood what was happening to me and they way I was feeling and I was able to find them.