I Wish I Had Known

I have always sufferred severe anxiety. So, in early 2007, when I was 22 years old, I went to my general doctor to seek advice on how to control my panic attacks. I honestly did not know there were such things as anti-anxiety medications, and I had never heard of Xanax. I was not seeking pills, I was seeking advice. So I was a bit shocked when he handed me a prescription for Xanax with the promise it will help.

And help it did. It calmed me, made me feel safe. I felt like I could do anything. As my tolerence grew and I found myself consuming more and more of these little "wonder" pills, I failed to realise I was becoming addicted. I also failed to notice how my personality was changing, and how I could not remember anything.

After about 8 months, I began to realise I was taking about 17mgs a day. Orignally, I was prescriped .5mg pills, and only suppose to take 2 of those daily. But I was seeking that high, that euphoric feeling. And my neglegence to ever research the side effects of xanax and withdrawl from it was about to take a horrifying turn.

Since I always used up my prescription too fast, I often found myself running out before I could get it renewed. I wouldn't be able to sleep, I would sweat and shake, but I would also count the minutes down until I could get that refill.

Then, in January 2008, I had been out of Xanax for 3 days. I was at work, I work at a major clothing retailer, and was closing the store. The next thing I remeber was lying on the floor, all of my coworkers surrounding me, and I was in a great deal of pain. I tried to get up, but my co-workers wouldnt let me. They asked me if I knew what had happened, and I told them I had no idea. Then my one co-worker looked at me and said the last thing I would have expected. She said "you had a grand-mal seizure. you fell face foward onto the tile and you were convulsing. That was about 20 minutes ago, you have been unconscious ever since" the next thing I knew I was being taken away by the paramedics. When I was in the hospital, I looked in a mirror and saw why my face hurt so bad: my bottom tooth had bit my upper lip when I fell, and while I was convulsing, the tooth literally bit through my upper lip. Also as a result of the fall, and my head banging against the tile while I was seizing, I pushed back my front teeth.

The doctor told me it was because of the sudden withdrawl from he Xanax, and that I must not take it anymore. Still, I didn't believe him. I had never in my life had a seizure before, and I was not willing to give up my Xanax.

So I continued on my addiction for another 9 months, just making sure I wouldnt run out. During those 9 months, I got in a car accident, attacked a stranger, and turned my back on my family.

Then in September 2008, after once again running out of Xanax, I was found unconscious in my office at work by a co-worker. When he woke me up, I didnt know who he was, where I was, or what happened. Once again, the paramedics came, and after looking at my tongue and realisng I had chewed it up severly, it was determined I had another seizure.

That was it for me. I finally, under a doctors supervision, weaned off Xanax completely. But the emotional trauma from the seizures, combined with all of the horrific things I had done while on Xanax, haunts me everyday. I am terrified of having another seizure, as now my seizure threshold is weakened, and i am so depressed. I do NOT miss Xanax, I am happy it is gone, but I am not coping well with the effect it has had on my life. I only wish I had known it was so addictive, that it can cause seizures. I should have known, but my own ignorance got in the way.

I share this story so that this doesn't have to happen to you. And if it has, please know your not alone. I am now 24 years old, and I am forced to face the fact that I was an addict. But each day I get one step closer to reconciling all of this with myself. Thank you for reading this.

starrhoda starrhoda
26-30, F
3 Responses Mar 16, 2009

I think its good and sad that we all have close to the same story I'm so glad you shared, your story touched me, because it reminds me that I am not the only one this has happened to I luckily never had any seizures, Instead I eventually overdosed...but I feel your pain on the fact that the things you did while you were on xanax still haunt you today, and that it completely changed who you were, I feel the same way. Keep your head up, and stay strong and thank you for sharing your story.

I went through the same exact thing. When my .5's didn't do the trick, i was buying 2mg bars on the street. I eventually had 2 seizures and lost quite a few friends and relatives relationships due to it but i am recovering now.

I have been through the Xanax addiction for a while, but never had to go through any of that. I am so glad to hear you are okay, and that you pulled through. It will always be hard but it was inspiring reading your story. I have a friend who takes Xanax Bars, and she has overdosed twice in two weeks, no one can get through to her and we're all scared next time, she won't make it. If you can, pray for her, because she has really bad seizures as well. I won't make this longer than it needs to be, I tend to do that, lol, but I truly think you are a strong person and you will be just fine, have faith hon, and be strong. Best of luck, and I wish you well. =) <br />
Lynn.