I have to admit, I never believed in chronic fatigue. I thought you should just buck up and pull yourself up by your bootstraps and get on with it. Until I felt it myself after a virus/strep illness two years ago I realized how very real this illness is and how debilitating it can be. My flu like symptoms were the start of this benzo madness. I got strep and a virus and could barely walk or eat. My heartrate shot up then crashed down over and over again during a normal course of antibiotics. Then came a steroid that was like a knock out punch. I haven't been the same since. Then came the benzo to help me recover from the other things and things went from bad to WORSE. WAY WORSE.
Two years ago, each day I would get up and do my day only to be stricken with a rash at the end of the night, and would have to take to my bed because I felt full on fatigue, flu, swollen glands. One doctor told me to get on with it. I did. But that feeling came and went for months and that is why I turned to benzos infrequently. Then came the reality that all of this might actually be something else.
However, even so, many people recover from CFS every day. I believe that like all diseases, each person has a different version and likely a different root cause and a different solution.
Some can be healed through amygdala retraining, some through antivirals, anti-parasitics, you name it. It's real though and the lack of curiosity about these illnesses, lyme and others that affect so many is disheartening and criminal. Just like they turn a blind eye towards the harm that benzos cause, same with these other issues. I also can't help but wonder how many of those afflicted are on a benzo and that it's the cuplrit all along.
The other common factor when I saw the you tube clip was the lack of curiosity and lack of openness from the doctors. Jennifer Brea had doctors tell her it was conversion disorder and all made up in her head. For some taking a psychogenic approach helps them heal. I believe that 100 percent. But the full blown lack of acknowledgement and dismissal is what turns patients into feeling like they have to do their own research, and become their own doctors and to share within a community of others that get it.
I still feel torn about staying in an 'illness community' because if as Monica Cassini points out (and I agree) that protracted withdrawal is some form of limbic system kindling then it's best to turn our attention elsewhere towards distraction rather than being symptom focused after we are through with the crux of our withdrawal. I don't know... going in circles again with my stinking thinking.....
I think Jennifer Brea's work is important and I am so glad that there will be a documentary documenting this unrecognized issue in the next several years.
Someone who found themselves accidentally dependent and suffered an iatrogenic injury from medications that were prescribed. Sharing experience, strength and hope with others. This is written as a person on this winding path and NOT as a professional. Please contact a licensed professional for any medical/psychological care or advice. This is NOT a substitute for medical or psychological care. What is written here reflects my own personal experience ONLY.