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When you can't sleep

" I have been unable to sleep properly now for about a month. I stopped my anti-psychotics on purpose, as I was sick of dealing with the Community Mental Health team. I lost faith in them, their diagnosis and treatment plans. This started off as intentional, but when things started getting bad again, I didn’t realise that getting back on them would be so difficult. I am 5 days back on meds now, and I am not feeling much better yet, just less angry. It didn’t take long to realise I had made a mistake, and then the issue became being able to physically remember to take them.


When I met the new person I am dealing with from the CMHT, he seemed nice and was very supportive. I told him what was going on and he told me off for taking Diazepam without a prescription – I have a lot left over from before. I was taking up to 30mg a time, and it was having no effect. After he left I phoned the GP, as I remembered I was on Lorazepam in hospital before and desperately needed to try something else. I wanted to follow the rules and get that prescription.


I managed to get a prescription to take 3x 1mg tablets per day max for a week, and was told that I would have to use them sparingly as I wouldn’t be likely to get any more. I was very grateful for this, as I explained to the doctor I am struggling to ‘spin the plates’ and keep working when things are being made difficult by a poor choice I admitted I had made. I had also tried the ‘Z’ drugs – Zopiclone and Zoilpediem before, but they never worked for me either.


I had high hopes for this working after reading online they even use it to get people about to have surgery to calm down enough to get sleep. It said 7 to 8 hours would be possible. I got far from that. I wanted to be put to sleep and be out like a light, but this did not happen. Now I write this to you at 4am, and I am just completely at a loss about what to do now.

My only other option now is to take the full 3 doses today and see if that levels things off enough to be able to sleep properly. Perhaps being up at 4am will mean I am so tired tonight, that I will sleep well. I wish I had never come off my anti-psychotics.


When I try to sleep it’s like a waking nightmare. People are shouting at me, and I am awake but in a disconnected reality where I am interacting with the violent dream world. It’s so intense I am jumping in and out of it all night and jumping out of bed in a panic it’s so intense. It was fine before as I could deal with it. The problem is this is now impacting me making a living during the week, and it cannot go on.


I can deal with symptoms during the day, and I have gotten quite good at managing that, but when my sleep is being messed with in this way, I cannot accept that. It’s not something you can sustain, and it impacts on everything you do.


After writing this it makes me realise that perhaps I do need to see the psychiatrist next week. I don’t want too, but I think I need some Haloperidol to take before bed to knock me out. Again they did this to me in hospital and I actually took that drug for about 6 months. Maybe that might work, but I am not sure. I wish I had not thrown away what I had left so I could have tried it without causing problems.


This will mean changing my mind about seeing the psychiatrist. I am angry with them because they stopped me from driving and that has gone on for 18 months now, largely because they experimented with different meds that did not work out.


I don’t want to have to go on Clozapine, but if this drug I am on is now going to be more ineffective, I am not sure how much longer I can continue with it not working properly, now that I cannot sleep properly. I don’t know what to do. I hope the Lorazepam works out, but I hope maybe I can get another anti-psychotic to help me get through the night will help as a last resort. " - Undisclosed Poster

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