... I had been taking 3mg of Ativan for a year or so. I didn't research it, it helped me sleep, I didn't take more than the prescribed dose and that was all I thought I needed to know.
Until - I took the last of my prescription and could not get to the pharmacy that day. I had trouble falling asleep that night - but expected that, so I thought maybe I should just stop taking it. The money I'd save would be nice and I didn't think I'd have any problems other than falling asleep. The next morning I felt odd, maybe I was getting a little sick. All I wanted to do was lay on the sofa. I made it through that second night somehow and the next morning I woke up in Hell. I had no energy, I could barely move. I alternated between crying hysterically and wishing I were brave enough to kill myself. A totally irrational thought, I have much to live for. Grand children, Children, a loving family - even a new job starting in 3 days. I didn't really want to kill myself, not intellectually. But emotionally it seemed a rational thing to think about.
The third day was worse, emotionally everything more intense and I was starting to have intense low back pain, I was freezing, I was sweating, I could not think, plan, hope or move off the sofa.
Thankfully, a friend told me I should never have abruptly stopped Ativan. I looked up the effects of abrupt withdrawal. So many of the things I was feeling were listed.
I called the pharmacy. 4 hours ago I took my normal bedtime dose. Within these 4 hours I have regained some of the sanity I was so close to loosing. 5 hours ago I could not have typed this. I could not have thought of the words, nor would I have had the physical energy.
I will probably choose to stop taking Ativan, but it will be a slow, slow taper. Hopefully with the assistance of my Doctor.
I had many more withdrawal symptoms than I have listed here. I feel very lucky I made it 3 (maybe it was 4) days.
Please, never try to stop this medicine "cold turkey" I have never in my 50+ years known such anguish. And because I had not researched this medicine at all, I had no idea what I was experiencing was withdrawal. My friend probably saved my life, and quite possibly my sanity