When Reducing Meds

Messily put-together-tips from personal experience on what to do during a reduction of medication.

When decreasing any amount of psychological medication, it is really important to rememeber you are not going to feel well for a while. It could be several months depending on how much reduction you need. It is important to talk to your loved ones to let them know you may seem “off” for a little while and maybe ask them to keep an eye on you incase widthdrawl symptoms get worse. You may feel more depressed, anxious, fidgety, irritable, impulsive, tired, emotional. You will most likely feel much worse before you feel better.
It is also okay to decide to go back on the medication/increase if you need to.

Practicing a lot of self care and positive self talk is essential. Having patience with yourself and being as self aware as possible when a symptom does arise is also great to help you through it. Name the emotion and where you feel it in your body. ex: “I am feeling very irritable right now. I feel a tightness in my chest, throat, and a dull ache in my forehead.This is most likely due to my medication reduction. I am going to take a nice, hot, relaxating shower to make myself feel better.”

If you end up losing your temper and snapping at someone, try your best to apologize immediately and recognize it is not their fault you are experiencing this. Recognize the emotions and thoughts you are feeling and seperate the feelings from the facts and use i statements. “John didn’t get me a glass of water, he’s a jerk (not fact).”is not helpful to you or him. Try: “John did not get me a glass of water(fact). I feel upset (fact)because it makes me feel like I am not important.”(is that true? That you’re not important just because john didnt get you a glass of water? No, it isnt and you can talk to John about how you’re feeling) Much easier to solve the issues with a partner if youre not just blaming them when you’re angry. Try sticking to “I feel… when you…because.. what i would like is…” instead of “you big jerk, you suck.” Lol

Practice more self care and maybe some mindfulness practices and meditation. Mindful eating, mindful walking, body scan meditation, etc.

Remember it is temporary and you will eventually feel better again.
And if you need to, you can always go back on them if it gets too difficult.

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Attachment

 

What is Attachment?

> The capacity to form and maintain healthy emotional relationships which generally begin to develop in early childhood.

> Enduring bond with ‘special’ person

> Security & safety within context of this relationship

> Includes soothing, comfort, and pleasure

> Loss or threat of loss of special person results in distress

What is the Attachment Theory?

> John Bowlby (1907-1990) British Child Psychiatrist/Psychoanalyst

> He was the first attachment theorist, describing attachment as a “lasting psychological connectedness between human beings.”

> Bowlby believed that the earliest bonds formed by children with their caregivers have a tremendous impact that continues throughout life.

> According to Bowlby, attachment also serves to keep the infant close to the mother, thus improving the child’s chances of survival.

> Disturbance/ Disruption of initial attachment bond between child and caregiver renders person insecure as an adult.

> The central theme of attachment theory is that caregivers who are available and responsive to their infant’s needs establish a sense of security in their children.

> The infant knows that the caregiver is dependable, which creates a secure base for the child to then explore the world.

Adult Attachment

> From our childhood experiences we develop schemas that are connected with dependability of others and the worth or ‘lovable-ness’ of self.

> These schemes are easily maintained across time into adulthood as they are reinforced over and over again.

> In the literature these schemas are referred to as attachment styles.


Types of Attachment Styles

(Hazen & Shaver 1994)

> Can I count on this person to be there for me if I need them?

> Are others trustworthy and responsive?

> Am I lovable and able to elicit caring?

ANSWER: NO

Avoidant

fearful- tend to recognize their need for others, but avoid others and frame them as untrustworthy.

Dismissing- Tend to deny their need for attachment and frame others as untrustworthy.

ANSWER: MAYBE

Anxious/Preoccupied

Tend to cling to attachment figures or aggressively demand reassurance, often fearing that they are somehow deficient or unlovable.

ANSWER: YES

Secure

Tend to believe that others are reliable and see themselves as lovable and worthy of care.

***A sense of security provides better

1.better Affect regulation

> less reactivity

> less hyper arousal

> less under arousal

> more acknowledgement of support seeking

A Sense of Security Provides

2.Better information processing

> more flexibility, curiosity, openness

> tolerance of ambiguity and uncertainty

3.Better communication

> more ability to collaborate, to disclose, more assertive and empathetic

A Sense of Security Provides

4.Sense of Self (love)/ is more positive.

How This Applies to Adults

> Seeking and maintaining contact is viewed as the primary motivating principle from childhood into adult relationships

> A secure connection offers a safe haven and a secure base.(needs for connection, comfort and caring are key)

> Accessibility and Responsiveness builds bonds

> Separation Distress – a predictable process.

> Protect

> Cling and Seek

> Depression and Despair

> Dettachment

 

Attachment Styles are working models of self and others

> The way we see ourselves

> The way we see others

> The way we see relationships

> Predict the way we will respond

Role of Emotion

> Emotions will automatically arise when an attachment figure is perceived as inaccessible or unresponsive.

> Attachment Injuries

> An Attachment injury occurs when one partner violates the expectation that the other will offer comfort and caring in times of danger and distress.

> It is characterized by an abandonment or betrayal of trust during a critical moment of need.

> When a partner cries out for help and there is no response, the sense of basic trust that is the foundation upon which the welfare of their bond depends is shattered.

 

Secure Attachment

Believes and trusts that his/her/their needs will be met.

Parent: Quick, Sensitive, Constant

Child: Secure, Exploring, Happy.

 

Avoidant Attachment

Subconsciously believes that his needs probably won’t be met.

Parent: Distant, Disengaged

Child: Not very explorative, Emotional

 

Ambivalent/anxious Attachment

Cannot Rely on his needs to be met.

Parent:Inconsistent, Sometime sensitive, Sometimes neglectful

Child:Anxious, Insecure, Angry

 

Disorganized Attachment

Severely confused with no strategy to have his needs met

ParentExtreme, Frightened, Frightening, Passive

Child: Depressed, Passive, Angry, Non-responsive.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

REf: OTMH, 4th Floor., attachfromscratch.com

 

Assertive Rights and Responsibilities

ASSERTIVE RIGHTS:
1. I have the right to put myself first. In fact, my 1st responsibility is to myself. Only when I am meeting my own needs adequately, can I give to others freely, without expectations.
2. I have the right to be treated with respect.
3. I have the right to decide what to do with my own property, body, and time.
4. I have the right to evaluate my own behaviour, thoughts, and emotions, and to take responsibility for their initiation and consequences upon myself.
5. I have the right to make mistakes and be responsible for them.
6. I have the right to make self-evaluations without worrying about what other people think.
7. I have the right to not offer reasons or excuses for justifying my behaviour.
8. I have the right to make my own decisions, to make illogical decisions AND to change my mind. I have the right to change my mind after I’ve said YES.
9. I have the right to say, “I don’t know, ” “I don’t understand,” “I don’t care.” and “I don’t want to be involved.” Without feeling inferior.
10. I have the right to say “no” without feeling guilty or selfish.
11. I have the right to ask for what I want (realizing that the other person has the right to say no).
12. I have the right to have, and express my feelings.
13. I have the right to consider my own needs and to express my needs. I have the right to ask for help.
14. I have the right to judge whether I am responsible for finding solutions to other people’s problems.
15. I have the right to self fulfillment.
16. I have the right to be independent.
17. I have the right to dignity and self-respect.
18. I have the right to privacy.
19. I have the right to accept, or to refuse, challenges.
20. I have the right to change.
21. I have the right to choose not to assert myself.
ASSERTIVE RESPONSIBILITIES:
1. To assess my true feelings without exaggeration or under-estimating; to express my feeling(s) appropriately without demeaning someone else in the process.
2. To act in a responsible manner as much of the time as possible.
3. To think through my opinions and realize others can disagree with them.
4. To learn from mistakes, rather than punishing myself or others because of mistakes.
5. To reply as soon as possible or as soon as I am able, and without taking unreasonable amount of time.
6. To accept others’ answers respectfully.
7. To respect commitments to others as well as to myself; to allow sufficient time to fulfill commitments.
8. To think through my responses before answering.
9. To not impose my own values on others.
10. To express my needs and, if appropriate, work out a compromise.
11. To avoid “boxing in” myself or others by labelling or making judgement.
12. To acknowledge other’s choices and accomplishments.
13. To feel appropriate anger and sadness and to assert these feelings with the people involved.
14. To recognize anger, sadness, and joy, and see that these feelings do not interfere with others’ rights and responsibilities.

READ THESE ALLOWED TO YOURSELF:
My needs are equal to the needs of others
My needs are different from yours and need to be respected.
My recovery is the most important thing.
I can be assertive without being aggressive.
I’m moving forward in my life despite setbacks
I have the right to my own time.
I am not alone.
I am learning to cope with problems I cannot change/fix.
I am learning who I am and I give myself permission to do that.
I’m okay with nurturing myself.
I am learning to walk away from people and situations that no longer serve me.
I will be kind to myself.

ASSERTIVE STATEMENTS:
I can see you are angry/upset right now/and/or/ I am upset right now.  I need to take a moment away from this conversation.
That is a harmful comment.  That is a hurtful comment.
Will you lower your voice?  If you cannot lower your voice, I will
have to end the conversation.
Please take a  few deep breaths – you may not realize but you’re talking “at” me.
That makes me uncomfortable.
That’s unkind.
That’s not very nice.
I don’t appreciate…
That’s personal.
Wow, that doesn’t make me feel good at all.
That’s too far.

**step down approach – what your body language, and lower your voice, space the words out.**

Remember: It’s not selfless or selfish its self care.

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