Tackling Mood Swings

Woman Covered by White Cloth

It’s been four weeks tomorrow since I took my last anxiety medication, and up until yesterday, I was feeling pretty good.  My mood started to darken sometime around noon, and no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t snap out of it.  I tried every cognative therapy trick in the book, worked out, soaked in the tub, and tried deep breathing exercises.  Nothing was helping, so in the end:  I drank.

I’ve actually been drinking a bit more than normal since I stopped taking my meds, but it didn’t occur to me that maybe I’ve been self-medicating.  Each night I’ve been drinking anywhere from 2 to 4 drinks because it feels good and helps me sleep.  I don’t get drunk, but I get buzzed enough to feel pretty darn good.  This morning I woke up feeling worse than I did yesterday.  Again, I tried to talk myself down; I kept telling myself to be mindful, but it wasn’t working.  I cried on my morning run; I was irritable, angry, frustrated, sad, and hopeless.  You have no idea how discouraged I felt — I really thought I was doing good without my meds.

When I got home from my run, I peeled my clothes off and stared at myself in the mirror.  I hated what I saw looking back at me.  My eyes travelled down my body, making note of every flaw, every inch of imperfection.  I looked myself in the eye and screamed “I hate you.”  The self-berating began; I couldn’t stop myself from the emotional beating I was inflicting on the hurting woman standing before me.  Mental and physical exhaustion overwhelmed me and I crumpled to the floor.  I didn’t want to be me anymore.

I pulled myself together as best I could.  Getting dressed was the hardest part because I felt disgusting in my own body.  Unsatisfied, I just picked something to wear, scrambled my way through the rest of my morning prep and left for work.  At some point during my drive to work, a thought came to mind: could this be PMS? (sorry to my male readers).  It seemed early, but I really couldn’t remember for sure when my last cycle was.  This thought alone calmed me down.  If this was PMS, it explained a lot.  Even on anxiety medication I suffer from pretty bad PMS.  My usual sypmtoms include bloating, increased appetite, and fatigue.  My moods swings haven’t been this bad, but that makes sense considering I was on medication for “MOODS.”

When I got to work, I pulled out my journal to see when my last cycle was.  Sure enough it was 21 days ago.  I’m no longer as regular as I used to be; my cycles are anywhere between 24 to 28 days apart, so this is definitely PMS.  With this knowledge I now have to make a decision.  I did some research, and I found that some people take SSRI (anxiety meds) for the days leading up to their cycles to alleviate PMS or PMDD (premenstral dysphoric disorder).  I still have a prescription for Wellbutrin, and I’m considering taking them for the next week.  If I do, I will feel like a bit of a failure for not being able to stay off meds, but I don’t think I can handle the severe moodswings I’ve had over the last two days.

I have some thinking to do right now, but at least I know I’m not losing my mind.  Whatever I choose, I hope I can forgive myself and remember that I am doing my very best.


5 Comments Add yours

  1. Imani tm says:

    I’m sorry to hear you’re feeling a little unbalanced mood wise. Join the PMS club hun! I’m right there with you 😦 Hormonal fluctuations make mood disorders harder to manage when you’re female. Men are “emotionally fucked up to a constant level.” Whereas women have monthly mood spikes which are like tidal waves. I have been a mess this month myself. I understand, and I’m so sorry you’re feeling this way 😦 I can send virtual PMS kindrid twin hugs if that’d help 😊❤💝 Imani

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Smartygirl41 says:

      hugs back, and thank you. I do feel a bit better now that I know why I feel so terrible. And yes men are fucked up….

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Imani tm says:

        Every month I get to a point where I tell my husband to fuck off and think he’s the most awful human on the planet! Then both of us stop and say, “check your diary” It’s always PMS!!! Knowing why makes us be more self forgiving. More self nurturing is in order for both of us 😊👍


  2. I know what PMS is and I am standing next to you during this time! 🙂 Boy, does it make things happen (it does). even it was not PMS, I would say please please do not get discouraged by feeling down now. We all do no matter how happy or stress-less we are or how ell things in our lives go. really is that there will be up times and down times… It is just a part of life. And do not be hard on yourself (I must do that myself too). best!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Smartygirl41 says:

      Thank you xoxo. I’ve now had 2 panic attacks today, so I took a wellbutrin. I think I need just temp meds for when it’s PMS time.

      Liked by 1 person

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