Have been taking 225- 300mg of Effexor XR (venlafaxine XR) for anxiety and agoraphobia for the past 7 years. I have had panic attacks and anxiety since childhood. Effexor does not seem to be helping much anymore and my new doctor prescribed Imipramine 25mg at bedtime for 1 week to start and then increase to 50mg at bedtime thereafter. Am I right to be afraid to take these medications together? It was a new doctor who prescribed it as my former doctor will be retiring, both docs are psychiatrists. I discussed with the new doc about my wishes to maybe change to a different medication because I would like to consider the possibility of conceiving a child in the next year or so. Ideally I would like to be drug free when I start trying to conceive. I am a 36 year old female, my husband is 42 and he had testicular cancer (had one removed) and there is a possibility that we may have to conceive using IVF (invitro fertilization). IVF will cost about 10 thousand for each treatment and would love to know what other medications that may be more safe (if there is such a thing) I have tried to gradually taper down my Venlafaxine in the past few years, but the withdrawal symptoms are difficult to manage and my anxiety seems to worsen. The use of Ativan (lorazepam) while trying to withdraw does not seem to help at all. Xanax (alprazolam) is very effective but I hesitate to use it because it will just be yet another drug that I will have to withdraw from. Is there a lesser of two evils? I would love to take a year off work and try to go drug free for reproductive purposes, but if IVF is going to be used, I need to work in order to afford even considering a child. Without meds I have trouble leaving the house and during the last time I tried to withdraw from Effexor, I lost my job because of the horrible withdrawal symptoms that included the worst anxiety imaginable... my hair fell out in clumps, horrible itchy hives/rash that I could not stop scratching even when taking antihistamines. I have tried hypnosis, but seems I cannot be hypnotized. Other drugs/remedies tried over the past 23 years were Luvox, Paxil, Wellbutrin, BuSpar, hydroxyzine, meditation, yoga, 5HTP, L-theanine, high doses of Omega 3, melatonin, Melissa, lemon balm. CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) seems to help, but my anxiety seems to creep back regardless. Any thoughts, suggestions and advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.