This Non Compliant Needs A Med Change


I have been feeling like shit for quite some time and here is where I’m at:

I think it was around 4 months ago now the last time I waltzed my ass out of my psychiatrist’s office after she prescribed me tegretol and looked me dead in the eye and stated, “I’m going to refer you to a humble colleague.”  I believe that she has read a few of my blogs and is less than thrilled with me speaking publicly about my journey, but I could be wrong.

*waves* Hi Dr. T.

Like I said, that was about 4 months ago now, maybe 5, with no word from my psychiatrist or this “humble colleague” that I am apparently being referred to. But, thank goodness for my GP, because when I ran out of my medication he was there to refill them for me. So now I’m left wondering, what exactly happened to abruptly end this client/therapist relationship with my psychiatrist?

My psychiatrist is hell bent on stopping my swings, and I encourage you to read all about that here. But, I refuse to take certain meds because of their side effects that end up making me actually worse off than the symptoms of bipolar disorder. When I bring this up, and my extensive research (I’m not a fucking doctor, but I have stopped putting shit into my body without first doing some research, again read the link and you’ll understand why) I am then labelled as being non compliant. Because I choose to have a dialogue with my doctors and refuse to just pop whatever poison they prescribe, I am labelled as being non compliant. When I bring up issues that stem from side effects from meds, that then require me to take other meds, those issues are brushed off because I am now…you guessed it…non compliant.

I need a med change and I need it yesterday. My options are limited here and it is a fucking awful feeling. My GP can refer me to someone and we can wait, or I can go inpatient and cross my fingers that I get a good psych, but who wants to go in during the holidays? I mean it’s never a good time to have a breakdown, but Christmas, come on. So I’m band-aiding with anti-anxiety meds and calling on every single one of my mindfulness and CBT tricks. This is ridiculous. I could call her but that seems weird. She usually ends our appointments with making a new appointment, not ushering me out the door quoting a blog and telling me she’s “referring me to a humble colleague.” I’m frustrated.






23 thoughts on “This Non Compliant Needs A Med Change

  1. Ugh – I’m so sorry….I hear so many stories about pdocs who act horribly like yours did. Serious wtf!
    I hope you don’t mind my sharing an excerpt of a post I wrote on March 3, 2015 -it’s just f.y.i and I’m impressed you do your research, actually I’m not surprised though!!!! 😉
    ***Sending you good juju***!!!!
    xoxo Dy

    “I’m on a mission to let people know about a rather “obsolete”, unsung bipolar medication combination that DID work to lift my years-long, insidious, evil bipolar depression.

    What still boggles my mind to this day is that none of the numerous psychiatrists (12/6/15 Note: over 7 years and 7 hospitalizations!!!!) I consulted with ever thought to mention this medication until my most recent doctor, Dr. D. I was diagnosed with postpartum bipolar one disorder in 2007, and Dr. D. is the best psychiatrist I’ve ever seen, bar none, and a big reason why that’s the case is because he thought out of the box, he had extensive experience, he was patient, and most importantly…he cared.

    In late 2013, per Dr. D.’s suggestion, I started taking an MAOI (monoamine oxidase inhibitor) medication called Parnate, which is an old-school anti-depressant medication. I’ve never had any anti-depressant throw me into hypomania or mania, but of course that was a concern. The fact I was taking a therapeutic dose of the mood stabilizer lithium (900 mg/night, which took a while to figure out was right for me. I’ve taken as low as 450mg, in which I became manic/suciidal, and as high as 1575, in which I bcame a shaking, shivering fucking mess) was a safeguard in a way, but of course I needed to be closely monitored.

    There are a few different MAOI’s and they’ve been used for decades for bipolar-medication resistant patients! So yes, again, I wonder why didn’t any psychiatrist think to tell me about MAOI’s as a possibility before Dr. D. suggested them? I’d love your take on that one! (Update: I have suspicions which I’ve written about elsewhere on my blog, but one biggie is that Big Pharma wants their brand-new, most $ meds to sell, not a dinosaur that actually works) For the record my father (who also had bipolar one) took an MAOI in the early 1980’s, but it didn’t work for him as he drank alcohol while taking it, which is a BIG BIG no no.

    Parnate works especially well when used with lithium; I’m extremely lucky that my blood tests have all been normal and I can tolerate it very well..

    I never like to give false hope when it comes to bipolar & meds, but this combination of an MAOI and lithium has been nothing short of miraculous in my life. It hasn’t been perfect; there are sacrifices I’ve made (some good, i.e. the nixing of alcohol!) but dammit – these sacrifices have been completely worth it.

    p.s. feel free to ask me any and all questions about MAOI’s & if I don’t know the answer I’ll ask my psychiatrist when I see him on Thursday.”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. MAOIs work great, but the dietary restrictions can be awful. Not as awful as depression though.Emsam is an MAOI patch that does not have dietary restriction. I’ve never tried it because my OCD and a patch go together horribly.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. The dietary restrictions were tough at first, but now they’re no big deal – and I’m a huge cheese, aged meats, soy lover! (All high-tyramine no no’s) 🙂 The payoff of being depression/suicidal ideation-free is beyond huge. Thanks for writing…I’ve heard of Emsam but not familiar with it; I’m very surprised that it wouldn’t have any dietary restrictions – are you 100% sure? In any case, I’m sorry that OCD & a patch wouldn’t work. 😦 Do you use another MAOI if you don’t mind my being nosy? It’s so nice to read a positive comment about them and I wonder if it’s you or someone else who has had a good result.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. They don’t want intelligent patients. They want patients who worship the ground they walk on and trust those suffering years they spent at school, later in the field, and blindly take whatever they prescribe.

    They want to go back to the days where patients couldn’t go online to “research” because it’s easier to manage an ignorant person than an educated one. My shrink point blank said, “Trust what my years of experience say about the side effects of this drug and don’t research online.” Because that makes their job harder and at the end of the day we are just another name in a cabinet full of other names and records. The more people they can squeeze into a day, without having to fight them or actually think beyond the same shit they prescribe everyone, the better.

    I’m not saying that’s your shrink; this has been my experience with most. And it does bother me she said that — the “humble” bit. That implies her professional ego is hurt and she can’t deal with being challenged by a you.

    But if we do not fight for ourselves and question our treatment when it does not work it’s evident that no one else will, as proven by their stance.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I think you nailed it perfectly, Zoe. Thank you. I’m not kidding when I say the psychiatrists in this small city are a little tiny clique who run in a circle, one told me this herself. I have a non compliant reputation now. Should be fun to find a new one.

      Thank you so much for your comment, Love. It helps to know you get it.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh Nicole I understand, and it sucks. This ‘psychiatrist’ is not doing their job, taking the oath seriously referring you and shrugging you off. I’m so sorry, it’s so frustrating and maddening to me. I, like you, challenge the doctors refusing to swallow shit that makes me sicker. I’m not a fucking doormat and they love shoving the pills at you that make you feel worse. I’m afraid they don’t know any better than we do the answers when it comes to mysteries of the mind… It’s a sad conundrum. You need the life saving drugs, they make you sick and as a med resistant it’s challenging to find the right cocktail. (it seems they all go bad, or maybe the brain chemistry changes, sigh). Please find a new, competent, caring Shrink who’s willing to treat the individual and think outside the box. They exist..Keep looking, get through the Holidays and I will too. Feel better. love and light. xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Our city is so sadly lacking in all doctors but psychs, oh wow, we’re limited..and they all run in a tight circle. Fingers are crossed though. We may have to go a city or two over…


  4. I think telling you she is referring you out and then not doing it or explaining why not is at least rude if not unethical. If she couldn’t find someone to refer you to she should have told you. She’s not related to that woman at the pharmacy is she? Non-Compliant is a label that should be dropped unless someone is actually refusing all medication and treatment.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. That was exactly my thoughts too, Bob. I used the words unethical when talking to my mother about this and she was hesitant to go that far, I’m not. Thank you.
      I will be following up with this. She left me without refills and I could have made the attempt to call her, I am an adult, but something rubbed me the wrong way. I think she dropped the ball.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Dropped the ball is right. Dropped the patient is the truth. To be just a bit charitable, I suppose she could not find another doctor she thought was humble enough to deal with our friend. I suspect it is not a good idea for practitioners to read their patients’ blogs unless the patient asks them to, and even then myaby not if they have tender egos.

        Liked by 2 people

  5. I am so sorry you have to go through this. We did a whole post ourselves on the inadequacies with the psychiatry we were presented with when our daughter was diagnosed. It is so pervasive, and harmful. Please know there are people in your corner ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  6. “Humble Colleague?” WTF?

    I can ensure you that being in the phosp over a major holiday sucks. I just spent the week of Thanksgiving inpatient. It was rather depressing (which was my problem in the first place). They were nice enough to relax dietary and outside food restrictions so that my family could bring me a home cooked Thanksgiving meal. That was nice. Sadly, none of the other patients even had a visitor on Thanksgiving. Wow, that got off topic…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. There are no humble colleagues. The entire profession is filled with arrogant, narcissistic toerags, who are crazier than I am, in part because they believe my “compliance” is more important than my health. I hope you get the help you need.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Ugh, so sorry, Nicole. As someone who is helping a family member deal with similar issues, I feel your frustration. It seems there is no easy answer. Medication may help–and often does–but then there are side effects, and when do you decide that a certain therapist or medication isn’t right for you? All I can say is that I have faith in you. You are so self aware, and I hope you find someone soon who respects your intelligence and is willing to work with you. Patients have so many more resources now than even ten years ago, and doctors of all types need to realize that.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Nichole it is unethical but I asked my friend who worked in offices of mental health clinic for a few years and other medical administration offices past 35 years she believes here in the states the term is abandonment! It is a legal issue .you can’t just dump your patient with out giving them a new option! I often fight with my doctor over lithium due to being toxic once! Two years ago! I’m learning my winning phrases and when to fold my cards for that hand. but now its my welbutrinn she will not play and I need a increse I got nothing and I could use a little mania this month didn’t impress lol she tweked topomax and gota new synthroid and guess this bipolar is not getting signals right anymore were good! We need then them clearly.. If they would give us credit when we clearly are being an active and informed and not in an episode good luck

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I think I’ve been labeled as non-compliant as well. I’m going to request a copy of my medical records just to see what comments have been made about me by my doctor. They often write down things that they don’t mention to you. I saw a comment by a doctor I no longer see. He wrote that basically, he thought my problem was anxiety more than bipolar disorder. He never mentioned this to me, but I saw it in the medical records when I requested a copy of them. I’m wondering why he never mentioned this to me, but it’s a pointless question since I don’t see him any longer. Bob’s right, doctors don’t want patients researching things online, they want blind trust.

    Liked by 1 person

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