How many long suffering parents have relented regarding antidepressants?

(24 Posts)
MariposaPink Fri 19-Jun-20 08:41:41

My dd is 13 and I suspect has been suffering from depression for a few years now. She was terribly bullied at school from year 3 onwards and after all my efforts to get things resolved for her, I ended up moving her out of schools twice (primary and secondary). She began a new school in November 2019. She said she loved the school, yet she began experiencing panic attacks in the class room and at home. She told me she would have flashbacks from her old school, e.g. when in the busy canteen she would remember what would happen in her old school and begin to panic. We spoke with the school about it and they allowed her to be first in line to get her food to avoid the lunchtime commotion. I must add that this school have been outstanding with their support.
I have done absolutely everything I can think of to help her over the years but there always seems to be "something". In order to try and help we attempted things such as yoga and meditation classes; equine therapy; swimming with dolphins; private counselling; CBT books; positive thinking books; mood enhancing vitamins and herbal tea; sports and exercise. This is a very shortened list.
Despite everything we've provided her with, she doesn't seem to want to embrace anything. She's quite dismissive of the opportunities especially if they are my suggestions so sometimes I ask my close friends to make the suggestion on my behalf! All she wants to do is stay in bed or slouch around in her PJ's. Her sleeping is erratic and she is picky with her food. Every few weeks she has a crying period of about 4-5 days and constantly wants hugs and to be near me. I don't know if this is relevant but she also has a short but regular menstrual cycle with an extremely heavy flow. She has had tests and there is no endometriosis or such like, however the GP prescribed tranexamic acid medication but they do not help. On my GP's advice, I'm now considering putting her on the combined pill.
Last month dd handed me a suicide note which she'd apparently written some months before. Then on Monday morning she woke up feeling extremely low and told me that she wanted to die more than ever. By some divine intervention, the very next day I received a call from CAMHS to confirm they had received our GP referral. I explained to them what had happened the day before and we were given an immediate crisis appointment. The psychiatrist at CAMHS suspects that dd is suffering from depression and possibly PTSD and offered antidepressants along with intensive therapy.
I'm not excited at the prospect of antidepressants but I feel like we've exhausted every other option. I'm at the end of my tether and feel slightly guilty that part of me wants her to take them for my sanity and not just hers. So not only am I having to consider antidepressants for her but also the pill. I just feel that there are a lot of chemicals happening all at once.
Does anyone have any advice for a stress out mother who surprisingly hasn't turned grey yet??

OP’s posts: |
BlueWave Fri 19-Jun-20 08:59:22

I regret not doing it sooner. We should have sought help earlier and we should have got ds on medication sooner. I wouldn't hesitate in your shoes. You sound like you've been brilliant and done everything you can to help her. My son was also bullied but found changing schools just as traumatic.

Exh was very anti him going on anti depressants because he was worried he wouldn't be able to come off them. But now he is on them, it has transformed his life and exh is a lot more supportive.

bumblingbovine49 Fri 19-Jun-20 09:04:30

DS aged 15 is on antidepressants. It is not a miracle cure. He is still unmotivated but his mood has improved significantly on them. He started them on the first day of lockdown and is is generally happie and less reactive than he was for the few months before so I think they must be working .

bumblingbovine49 Fri 19-Jun-20 09:08:18

Also to say he is.noy ready for therapy yet and he refused an increase in dose suggested by his psychiatrist but I am hopeful that in time andd when Camhs finalllyy contact us that he will accept.sone therapy. He was too stressed and anxious before to accept any intervention at all. In fact he wants no input from us which is so difficult. If he were like your daughter and wanted or asked for our help things would be so much easier I would say try them particularly as there is a plan for intensive therapy as well

DeborahAnnabelToo Fri 19-Jun-20 09:10:50

My dd is 15 and has been on them for around 1.5 years. Completely changed her life. They are mainly for anxiety which was stopping her doing so many things. I don't regret it for a single second.

BlueWave Fri 19-Jun-20 09:16:52

bumbling my son is like that too. He won't accept any help. He has now started to go to therapy but it took some doing. The first person we found he just hated but I've now found a man that he relates to much better and he has continued to see him. I'm still not convinced he's being completely honest with him, ds is v secretive, but I am just relieved he's doing something. It took a while though

mariposa be aware that the first 6 weeks on the ADs can actually make them worse. You need to watch them like a hawk in that period. But after that, they do seem to kick in. Ds had to have a lot of dose readjustments before they got it right - so as bumbling says it's not an instant miracle cure. But over time, they definitely make a difference.

WhatHaveIFound Fri 19-Jun-20 10:26:44

My DD started on antidepressants 2 weeks before lockdown. It's made a huge difference to her mood and I feel she's rejoined the family.

We'd had a very stressful few years in the lead up and it was only when she turned 18 that the doctor would consider prescibing them.

I would say that being on the pill didn't help with DD's depression at all so she'd already stopped taking it at the beginning of the the year. She had been taking it to help with acne rather than for menstrual problems or birth control.


Onekidnoclue Fri 19-Jun-20 10:38:25

I was severely depressed as a teen. I was suicidal and had eating issues.
I was desperate for help but my mother refused to let me have anti depressants. It made our relationship strained at the time. I had a severe depressive episode a few years ago and was prescribed anti depressants. They made a huge difference. I struggle looking back on the time as a teen when I struggled for years now I know how much AD can help. I wonder if I had to suffer as I did.
Clearly I haven’t a clue if they will work for your DD but I wish my mother had allowed me to discover whether or not they might have worked for me.
Good luck. You sound really caring and I think your dd is very fortunate to have you fighting for her, even if she doesn’t realise.

Borderterrierpuppy Sat 20-Jun-20 08:43:38

With that history I would not hesitate, they can be life changing.
I think the stigma around mental health makes us wary of meds to help.
As long as she is being monitored for response and possible side effects it has to be worth a go.

corythatwas Sat 20-Jun-20 12:17:49

Sorry to hear you are both going through this, OP. Or all of you, if there's more than the two of you in the family.

In our case it wasn't a case of relenting. As others have said, it's not a miracle cure. It was a serious decision taken after a long period of discussion with the CAHMS team, based on a risk assessment weighing the risk of side effects against the risk of further suicide attempts, and part of an extensive therapy programme. Which is actually exactly what you seem to be describing too, OP. You are not talking about giving in and buying sweeties for a tantrumming toddler, you have explored all avenues and nothing seems to be working so far.

In dd's case she had already been doing the therapy for quite some time and it was absolutely clear she was incapable of engaging but the doctors were holding out for her 15th birthday with the antidepressants.

Things didn't magically clear up after starting the medication, and she's had a couple of false starts where she's either had to change medication or had bad side effects with a new one. She made one suicide attempt after (but probably not caused by) going on meds. She has had more panic attacks than she can remember, some of them in awkward places (the tube at midnight, coming back from a party).

BUT- and this is a big but- with the help of meds she was able to engage in the programme and work on a supported part-time return to school. She got enough GCSEs to get into college. She did well there.

In dd's case (23 now) she will probably never be off the meds as her MH issues are linked with a chronic physical disorder as well. But she is coping. She held down a job for 2 years after college, she is now studying the thing she has dreamt of all her life, she is hoping to forge a career in a very competitive industry. She knows she has to work with her MH issues as well as with her physical disability and has developed a whole skills set for doing that. It's good enough.

HelloViroids Sat 20-Jun-20 12:20:57

As said upthread, I wish my parents had allowed me antidepressants in my teens instead of waiting until I was older. I have been told that the length and intensity of the depressive periods I had in my teens and early 20s made the breakdown I had in my late 20s more likely, and I am now on medication most likely for life.

Welkin Sat 20-Jun-20 12:31:21

Please please have her investigated for PMDD. Ask for a referral to a gynaecologist if necessary.

MariposaPink Wed 24-Jun-20 12:12:04

Hi all, I'm so sorry it's taken me a while to thank you all for your advice and sharing your experiences.
It's been so helpful to read them all and we have come to the decision that dd will try antidepressants. We have an appointment tomorrow and I pray that they will help her.
In the meantime I had a massive anxiety episode on Saturday night so I've taken the last few days to remain quiet in mind and in my surroundings. It's difficult to do that when you know you have a depressed daughter in the next bedroom but I need to get back on my feet ASAP.
@welkin- I'd never heard of PMDD so I had a quick google. I will speak to our GP about this. Thanks for the heads up.

OP’s posts: |
Mabelface Wed 24-Jun-20 13:09:29

PMDD was my first thought too. Also, what tests has she had to rule out endo? The only full diagnostic tool is a laparoscopy. Ultrasound scans can't diagnose it.

MariposaPink Wed 24-Jun-20 14:59:44

@mabelface I didn't know that endo could only be diagnosed via a laparoscopy. She only had an ultrasound. I will speak with the GP about this also. Thank you.

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MariposaPink Sun 19-Jul-20 11:00:07

Hi all,

Looking for some advice again please.

So DD has been prescribed 20mg Fluoxetine. She's been taking them for the last 3 weeks and her mood has picked up which has been great. However, she has been vomiting 2-3 times a day everyday since taking them. Doctor prescribed omeprazole and anti-sickness tablets but even when she eats dried and bland foods, she still vomits. Recently there were streaks of blood because it's likely her oesophagus has a small abrasion from all the vomiting.

We've begun to wean her off fluoxetine now; reduced it to 10mg of liquid formula (still vomiting on that) with a view to ceasing on Tuesday.

Can I ask which antidepressants your children are on and what side effects (if any) they suffered and for how long?

Thanks. smile

OP’s posts: |
fishonabicycle Sun 19-Jul-20 18:16:39

Speak to your GP! Not randoms on the internet!

cuntryclub Sun 19-Jul-20 18:22:14


Speak to your GP! Not randoms on the internet!

OP was literally asking about others being in the same boat. Not medical advice/. What is wrong with you?

OP o can see it coming for my own DD and I can honestly say after reading other real life experiences both in Mumsnet and elsewhere I wouldn't hesitate in medication for mine now.

cuntryclub Sun 19-Jul-20 18:23:20

Oh for fucks sake now I see it.

Apologies @fishonabicycle blush

OnMute Sun 19-Jul-20 19:02:01

Mariposa, I was one of the original responders but have name changed!

My son takes fluoxetine with quetiapine and has never displayed sickness (though it makes him tired).

I am so so so pleased you are seeing her mood improve and I really hope they can find another AD that doesn't cause her sickness. Fluoxetine is always the first one they try so there are others!

Let us know how you get on!

fishonabicycle Sun 19-Jul-20 19:52:32

I hope your daughter gets help - I work in a GP's surgery - so many people take various anti depressants - it's very common.

MariposaPink Sun 19-Jul-20 20:23:17

Thank you for your replies @OnMute @fishonabicycle @cuntryclub

Naturally I am in communication with our GP and psychiatrist but I just wanted to see if anyone else was experiencing the same thing. As selfish as it sounds, it's somewhat comforting when you're not in the boat alone.

@cuntryclub - I hope it works out well for your DD.

@OnMute - thanks for responding to me again and I'm glad your DS is reacting positively to his meds combo.

@fishonabicycle - thanks for your reassurance on your most recent response. I'm sure you see all kinds working in a GP surgery!

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Trailing1 Sun 19-Jul-20 20:30:32

I just wanted to say that I wish your daughter and you well. I am an adult with depression and sometimes it terrifies me, I cannot begin to imagine how it has been for your DD. I hope she gets well soon.

MariposaPink Sun 19-Jul-20 22:06:48

@Trailing1 - thank you so much for your kind well wishes. And I hope you have a good support network around you when you need. thanks

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