An Open Letter To The World Via The New York TImes

Dear World,

Manufacturers, Researchers, FDA, DNA, NPR, and ABC,

I am speaking on behalf of many people who think the same way I do. No, I do not have empirical evidence or research to back my claim but guess what? I don’t need it. Apparently all the studies that have been done in the past by your researches are, to be delicate, for shit.( Sorry, are not substantiated)

One day you tell us to drink milk, lots of milk so that are bones are strong and healthy. I’m sorry I believe I heard something about “drinking too much milk is bad for our bones?” What?  This type of stuff goes on and on and I for one am sick of it.

I already wrote an essay in my blog about anti-anxiety pills for anxious people are going to give us, most probably, Alzheimer’s disease. What a great idea to tell someone who is anxious to begin with, without alternative ideas. I have anxiety issues, I have no problem revealing that and when my psychiatrist told me, albeit rather nervously, about this new study, she gave me a handout of a copy of the study.

Maybe that would have been handled better if this had begun in the beginning of the session and discussed with alternatives. What happened after being told? Major anxiety. After processing this new information, if indeed it is true, I need to think of quality of life and choices. But, that is something we should have talked about BEFORE those five sheets of paper were handed to my sweaty palms.

I find it wrong that open communication is allowed OUT so very cavalierly and THEN retracted months or years later with the opposite findings. Basically, all this media is making us crazy. Would it be so wrong to ask all of you to “shut the blank up?”

Do we need to know every simple thing at every minute of every hour of every day? Some of you want to know, some of us don’t. Yes, I know freedom of speech but what about something in the middle? I don’t want to know everything, every minute in every detail. Plus, the media exploits serious events, I truly can’t handle it. That is why I choose NOT to watch the news at night because there is enough madness, violence, gore and blood in the world that I don’t want to be reminded of it before I TRY to go to sleep. Do you understand?

All I’m asking is for is for you to think and be considerate. Think before you speak? Do complete research before you announce news like its one of the Entertainment Shows on television. At least they are honest, their intent is to entertain.

What you are doing is tormenting people. Do this, no do that. So now, when we get anxious, we have to think twice before we take an anti-anxiety pill because for years it has been the solution to so many of our problems, now we live in fear, choosing quality of life vs. quantity of life. Please, just think about it.

Sincerely yours,

Advertisements

…And You Thought I Was Anxious Before??

Dear Psychiatrists,

Telling anxious patients that their anti anxiety meds are going to probably give them Alzheimers disease in the future is really not the way to go. I mean it, I should know, I am a patient that suffers from anxiety and I really don’t want to hear this, it’s making me even MORE anxious.  Now I can’t use my medication? What’s the point? You can’t take away medication without substitution? Don’t tell us this without coming up with a different plan at the same time.

Don’t tell me there is a link and then say good-bye, see you in two weeks. That is all sorts of wrong. Telling us that anti anxiety meds are going to give us Alzheimer’s disease in the future is like handing over loaded guns and hundreds of dangerous pills to someone threatening suicide.

Apparently, there’s this new article out that people are getting anxious about, you can feel the tremors in the air, a cup of wiggling orange jello in a steel cup.

The psychiatrists, all over, are desperately copying the article that says the anti-anxiety medicines are strongly linked to gettng Alzheimers disease. Do you think that information is something that we need to hear without a …But…Or  we will try…..? We  come to you, worried and afraid and we fear pain, illness, madness, flying on planes or driving and getting lost and…the list continues and is different for everyone.

Of course I told this to my friend who suffers from anxiety and much more and then he got anxious (but he wouldn’t admit it) and he asked

a professor at college and sent me some research that the study is completely inconclusive. Hmmm. That sounds good but should I believe him? Not yet. Only when I hear it from MY doctor will I feel more relaxed.By the way, I think my psychiatrist was anxious about this study as well, I thought of that today. I did not get a sense of calmness from her at all. I am going to ask her some day.

As usual, I’ve decided to cut my prescription in half (my doctors are not fond of me self-prescribing) but hey, in this case I think it’s perfectly reasonable. I didn’t go cold turkey and I added a Benadryl. In good faith I sent all this information in an email to my lovely psychiatrist. She is a goddess.

The other medicine is only use as needed

English: Xanax 0.25, 0.5 and 1 mg scored tablets

and I haven’t needed it for a while. However, I have been practicing mindful meditation and now I will commit to doing it twice a day.

So, before we all panic, let’s think of this as a new beginning. I’m not going to lie I feel the first rumblings in my stomach, that’s where it starts for me. I stop typing, I take three deep, long breaths to calm myself down. I didn’t open a prescription bottle that has little orange pills in it. I am trying to say good-bye to you, Xanax, even though I will probably will miss you but I will feel cleaner and stronger without you. I hope.

*Alzheimers/Dementia is a very serious disease.For information:

24/7 Helpline | Alzheimer’s Association

http://www.alz.orgWe Can Help

Alzheimer’s Association
 

Call us tollfree anytime day or night at 1.800.272.3900.

Carry on Tuesday: In youth we learn; in age we understand

Fred Carian

Fred Carian (Photo credit: carianoff)

Charles and I were married for 53 years before he passed, alone, in the Alzheimer’s wing of the nursing home.  I am now living in my daughter Kaitlin’s house; I don’t want to be here and I’m sure they feel the same. I don’t blame them. I’m mourning more the loss of my  independence than my husband. I’m 93 and I’ve had enough. It is time for me to die.

Charles and I raised our family in Maine, we were “tough old birds” our children used to say.  But, life brings us nothing but surprises, change found us when we weren’t looking. We were getting older, Charles had gotten himself into a car accident, they took his license away, things were very different now.

We put our house up for sale, even though our children were upset, Charles insisted on moving to Independent Living. I didn’t want that but I had no choice. Not back in those days.

We lived first in Harrison House. It was a white building with a lovely garden. Charlie and I used to sit and admire the pink tulips and the big red rose bush. warm season. When Charles was still well and he could walk, with a cane, he would steal a red rose and give it to me. I would be scared he would get caught but he would just laugh and say “Heck, we’re payin’ for it”and we would laugh. When it got cold we would still be in the sun, with our puffy, blue jackets and our red plaid wool blanket on our laps.

After several months I noticed Charles acting a bit odd but I ignored it. He had just had his accident fairly recently and really what isn’t odd in old age? We forgot things, we misplace things. Getting old is nobody’s friend. I would cover for him when the children came to visit. We taught our children to be strong so I had to be strong, until I couldn’t anymore. I had hidden my feelings so long that they burst like the cold waters gushing out of the levees. Finally, I told them the things their dad was doing and they insisted their Dad see a neurologist. I postponed it twice. Finally, begrudgingly, our daughter Kaitlin forced us to go. She was with me when after all the tests, the doctor uttered the words: Moderate-Late Stage Alzheimer’s. Kaitlin gasped but I knew. I had always known.

He deteriorated rapidly. Once he got violent and struck me, they moved Charles to the nursing home in the Alzheimer’s wing next to where I lived. I stayed in our old room, alone. Charles recognized me once in a while and he would have a good few minutes on and off. The last time the grandchildren visited him he remembered them and I told their parents I did not want the grandchildren to ever come again. I wanted them to remember their grandpa as he was. A living memory. It was the least I could do.

Sometimes he would act like a baby other times he would throw things at me and and talk crazy. Who was this person?  I had difficulty remembering he was my Charlie but he wasn’t. He had completely forgotten who I was and would lash out at me, calling me “bitch woman” and calling me “evil.” “I’ve heard it said that in youth we learn, in age we understand but that’s not always the case. Oh no, not really. I made huge mistakes when I was old, more than when I was young. I pretended he was alright when I knew he wasn’t. I should have stuck up for myself like the girls do these days and  never have sold the darn house. I hadn’t learned a thing and I should have. I knew about Charlie’s illness long before the doctor diagnosed him but I refused to acknowledge it. Had I brought him to the doctor earlier he could have been on medicine to help him. I was an old fool, just a plain old fool. Getting old is the worst of your nightmares times ten thousand. Believe me, I know.

I used to have my life and oh, how I loved it. Independence is such a huge part of being alive, you may not realize that but it’s true. I can no longer drive. I stay in my daughter’s room, most times. On some Sundays, we visit the cemetery where we buried Charles. He was a fine man for many years and he had a terrible, terrible illness that changed him to someone else. I will always love that man I married but we buried a shell of a man who was not my husband. That was a completely different person, a stranger, that man was not my Charlie.