I can only get down on my knees and thank God that I went through this process in the age of the internet. If I hadn't found Point of Return through an internet search, I never would have found the safest and most comprehensive program available for prescription drug withdrawal. They know what they are doing, they have personal experience with it, and they know how to nurture and push us through the laborious process. With the Point of Return program, you have a safe and private internet forum with which to vent, cry and laugh with others on the same journey. The forum is a place to share stories of small victories, resilience and strength.
I'm taking my last dose of clonazepam tonight but I know the healing process isn't over. Most likely, I will have heart palpitations, anxiety, more sleep problems, derealization, tinnitus, and fatigue for awhile. I don't care. I want my life back and the only way out is through. Because of my slow taper my brain had a chance to heal with each reduction and I have hope I can handle whatever the post-taper period throws my way. With the toolbox Point of Return has given me, I have faith that I can remain medication-free. I am very grateful! Thank you from the bottom of my heart to Alesandra, Andrea, Terry for patiently listening to me go on and on during phone conversations and for your constant reassurance. Thank you also to the divine mentors on the forum who selflessly volunteer their time coaching and encouraging: Karole, Athena, Elisa-Ruth, and Bobby. Don't hesistate to call Point of Return. If you are dedicated to getting well, and put in the time and effort, they will support you every step of the way.
A few weeks later eventually I checked myself in a hospital named Bronx Lebanon because the panic attacks became more terrifying; and I didn't know what was happening with me?
While hospitalized I felt ashamed and weak! I grew up in a harsh environment emotionally and to end up laying in a gurney in the hallway of the hospital due to no rooms left I became depressed. After being what I call being expiremented on with various drugs, I was ready to get out!
I remember while in group my whole body started having spasms and twitching. My arms,legs,mouth even my eye brows had these involuntary movements. They excused me from group and I was given a shot and it stopped instantly! While being hospitalized I was prescribed Xanax and the panic attacks were controlled but I remember feeling "hooked!" I would frequently go to the nurses station to ask for my Xanax and they would say politely "It's not time yet!
While on Xanex and the other drugs they had me taking I felt weird and out of place. The meds was new in my system and I remember laying in that room totally spaced out. Eventually I got out and was released after 14 days. My parents drove all the way from Kansas City to New York nonstop to release me out of the hospital. I remember walking into the office where patients are assessed and my mother started "weeping!" as my dad looked at me when I sat down in. I looked like a skeleton; I barely ate and I slept alot because the drugs made me drowsy and I was a broken man. I decided to go back home to Kansas City with my folks to rest and recover.
Once I was back in Missouri I tried to rest and continued to take my Xanax. One day I was in the bedroom and my folks were having a small get together in the living room with family; I left to join the party and instantly I had terrible thought in my mind that I never experienced before. The thoughts was "I don't want to live anymore!" This wasn't negative self talk but it was pushed by a desire to actually not want to exist! I cried uncontrollably and my mom walked with me outside to help calm me down. It was scary and powerful! Eventually the thought left but I was traumatized and confused. I was now depressed on top of anxiety and didn't understand what was happening? I went to a doctor over in Kansas and he told me I had despression. He then wrote me a prescription eventually for Paxil 40 mg. The strength was so strong and I felt like a zombie with these horrible side effects like stomach spasms,dry mouth,headaches and drugged!
It was 1996 in july,i remember because on the news was TWA flight 900 that crashed i layed in bed going through side effects of Paxil.
My dose settled at 20 mg, I returned to New York and although the panic attacks was controlled I didn't feel like myself. I seemed robotic and flat.
I after a few more years of being out east I returned to Kansas City,eventually getting settled by finding a job,hanging out with friends.Things were looking good and i felt good. I decided I felt okay and decided to stop taking Paxil cold turkey. Shortly afterwards which I believe was either a few days or a week; I began having burst of anxiety,heart palputations and racing thoughts that were worse than my original symptoms.
I got back on Paxil. I worked at my family's restaurant and would complain that I felt crappy. None of us knew what exactly was happening but I was encouraged to pray and I did. I would miss doses,stop cold turkey and have episodes; eventually coming to the understanding that I no longer wanted to be on Paxil. I had began seeing a psyche doctor who was covered in my insurance network. I told him I no longer wanted to be on Paxil and i felt better, so he wrote me a prescription that was like a 4 week taper and as prescribed I followed it. I had horrible side effects like brain zaps,depersonalization,crying spells,depression,anxiety, depersonalization and dizziness.
He put me back on a generic version called Paroxetine. I began to come to the conclusion that I would have to take Paroxetine forever, I didn't feel my doctor was truly concerned for my well being,I began to mistrust him. When I talked with him about my issues and concerns he was pretty emotionless and discounted my side effects. I use to just stare at his junky desk stacked with folders,papers and I felt uneasy with all the clutter. I was apathetic and missed a appointment but called to either pay fee or reschedule! One time I was running low on my prescription and it was like wed. and he basically refused to refill my rx. I went to the office and i spoke to his receptionist and she said she would give him the message. I called the next day and she said that he filled it out. On that friday I tried to get my meds and the pharmacist said I had no more refills left!;I contacted the office and they played phone tag until they closed; and I had no paroxetine. My symptoms because worse after being on Paroxetine so long so going without Paroxetine throughout the weekend was hell. I had brain zaps,crying spells and fits of rage. Monday came and I was ravaged from withdrawal syndrome.
I was so angry I went to the office Mon morning with a video camera and confronted the nurse and doctor for lying about writing my prescription,they must have thought I was crazy but I was desperate and didn't understand why someone who was suppose to take care of his patients let me suffer in agony? I went back a few times and started to tell him I believe I am having withdrawal syndrome. I began to educate myself and learned of all these symptoms and even people who committed suicide from Paxil-Paroxetine. I was other times of trying to get off of Paroxetine, but it had me in its clutches!
With the Internet evolving I searched out messege boards or threads on Paxil and began to realize I wasn't alone.Other people suffered and had the same problems with what I began to call "Paxhell!" Life moved on I got married,had children and I felt good! Things were happening in my life! But I knew despite early childhood trauma and the bouts of anxiety,depression I felt different now with the meds. I was at a low point in life and began to awaken my spiritually and decided i wanted to connect with Africa and i decided i wanted to go on a sabitical. I had enough meds for less than a month so I end up going to Egypt. I loved the history,scenery and felt a sense of connection. I missed a few doses and that's when depersonalization kicked into full drive.The group organizer tried to help when I couldn't get back on track with the remainder of pills I had. The depersonalization was bad, he suggested I try wellbutrin so I could ween off easier. My situation and depersonalization intensified.I cut the trip short and ended up back in town suffering. 6 months of depersonalization and a severe stuffy head that felt like my head was wrapped with gauze; feelings of being unreal,out of body. That severe stuffy headache that lasted everyday for years and it still it slightly. After some time I got another job and returned to life.
I ran across information about people who were getting off Paxil. I began to search out other sites and ran across a site describing a organization called "Point of Return." I reached out and talked with Alesandra which I would mess her name up calling her Alexandra lol. she also spoke with my mom and I listened to her story which inspired me to defeat the evil drug called Paxil. Truth is while being encouraged I was scared from all the butt whippins laid on me when I tried to quit. I ordered a kit and got a liquid version of Paroxetine. I now remember the liquid version was from my pharmacist and it wasn't from the original manufacturer which was TEVA.
I began to taper and the first dose I felt weird and not right. I continued despite feeling horrible a couple of weeks and I tapped out. I got back on Paroxetine and pretty much stuck. That was in I believe in 2008 or 2009? I knew and always believed in what I learned from POR,I had the workbook and studied it.I continued to educate myself on other people's experiences.
In 2016 ,I like I normally would go to CVS and pick up my prescription for Paroxetine. I at this point knew more about the drug than most doctors,pharmacist regarding side effects and learned the hard way. After trying different manufacturers like at Walmart; the minute you take a different version you know immediately with the symptoms of withdrawal. Anyways the pharmacist told me that they no longer supplied the TEVA brand which put me on alert. I told her that I couldn't take that brand because it's different than what I take. She had 7 pills of TEVA left. She checked in their system but they no longer supplied it due to a maker in China was cheaper. I took the those 7 pills of Paroxetine and began searching for other pharmacies who also no longer carried the TEVA brand.
I then contacted Point of Return,while worried i had faith that something would work out. Alesandra told me to contact a compound pharmacist she had in her network. She told me to call him up to see if I could get prescription so I could finally taper off Paroxetine. I called up Roy and I explained my situation. He got on his computer. His last search of his suppliers he found the TEVA brand. He faxed a rx to my general practitioner so they could send back the rx and I could get my meds from Roy My doctors office lost the prescription order. I had a few days left of pills and it was down to the wire.
I had to eventually go up to the doctors office which they ended up locating the precription. Once it was faxed Roy had my order dropshipped the next day. I got back on the suppliments and this time I was serious because I had no choice especially with TEVA no longer available. I learned to have faith in God, Christ and the words of the scriptures to comfort me and give me hope despite of.
Alasandra confirmed with me that different makers of Paroxetine are different and now this was a real urgent reason to gather strength to taper off it.
I began to take the liquid suspension dropping gradually. I started doing good on the plan and then I started to what I know now as sabatage myself by eating junk foods,soda pop. The side effects were escalating although on the plan they were pretty non existent compared to withdrawal without help. Alasandra emailed and said that I was doing so well and not to sabatage myself. I realized I really doing it out of fear of not being Paroxetine despite all the trauma it caused me for 20 years. I cleaned up my diet,as the meds slowly left my system I began to deal with issues that was present before paroxetine. They never left which I began problem solving by talking with my wife who gave me another perspective! Also learning to have fun helped a bunch. We traveled as a family and spent time with wildlife visiting farms,animal sanctuaries and zoos. On vacation with also went swimming and enjoyed quality time together. It helped me to connect with my family since Paroxetine strips away your connection. Not only with yourself but the people,places and things around you. Your existence seems unreal and everything about it.
Withdrawing with Point of Return helping and guiding was a relief yet,coming back after 20 years was very emotional. It seemed so unfair to have something in your system that can rob 20 years out of your life. I continued talking with my wife about the trauma as a child which was the helpful and a relief to except that it was the past and I had a opportunity to press replay on my life! I was titrating down and for soon reason I thought I was on a higher dose in ml which in mg is different; it wasnt until I talked with Roy and he said no you are on 2.0 mg and soon 1.5mg. I was thinking I was at 6.5 ml. I was for the most part shocked and glad,yet i was close to being done, which scared me! A Paroxetine brought me hell in a pink pill I was still scared without it! A crutch you might say for 20 years, I got down to 0.05 ml and it hit me that I was at the finish line. Aug 23 , 20016 was my last dose of paroxetine and it's bittersweet with tears of joy! Today is the second day without the routine of cutting pills and worrying about running out of meds.
I am still mending because it's like waking up from a long coma,things seem a bit foreign but it feels right! I feel like my true self, back and with no side effects! I can say I beat you paroxetine.... Point of Return was a vessel sent by God to end my anguish and hell from SSRIs. I recently started talking about my experience and as of now I'm helping people who are suffering with withdrawal syndrome. I have a testimony to share with the masses of people who got caught in the web of SSRI medications. My success is a example of that God answers prayers. My wife never wavered in support and encouragement,POR assisted and provided the tools every step of the way.
Roy providing my liquid paroxetine and a comfortable taper plan, these important components help me win the war with Paroxetine. My story is one of many testimonies of people who are affected by GSK who are the makers of Paxil. My experience now give me the courage to give not only myself but others a voice.
Some people have paid the ultimate price suffering and labeled when all along it was what we know as withdrawal syndrome. I am one of the survivors. For this I am grateful beyond words can truly express! I can now say that I'm "PAXIL FREE!"
I just wanted to thank Point of Return and tell my story in hopes it will help others. I started taking Temazapam in 2010 I had severe health issues, Colon Cancer, and severe neck issues. I knew that with taking Benzos there was no free lunch but I had to sleep. It started out fine, I was sleeping 6-7 hours with the medicine. Fast forward to May of 2015, I was sleeping 2-3 hours if I was lucky. I was somewhat in panic mode realizing my sleep situation was a disaster.
So the only option I had was to do a detox/rehab 14 day program. The more research I did on that the only positive was insurance covered 14 days. The problem was the program made little sense and people who did that said if you had taken benzos for any length of time the 14 day program was torturous and ineffective so I ruled that out.
As I got more desperate I looked into some programs in Utah, they looked effective but probably 6-9 months stay in my situation and $200-400 thousand out of pocket with no help from insurance so I ruled that out. So my third and best option was Point of return. I started in May of 2015 and did a ten month taper (finished the end of February 2016). I am now sleeping 5-7 hours naturally as of April 2016.
I can't say enough about point of Return and the people that helped me (Andrea, Alesandra and Terry), extremely knowledgeable, friendly and professional. I followed there program and with magnificent results. I have continued to call them and get helpful advice even after the weaning. I did thorough research on my options and considered Point of Return the most knowledgeable and cost effective of all the choices.
Eric S. (California) Temazepam
MY STORY IN A NUTSHELL:
I’ve always been a light sleeper, but looking back now I can trace my sleep problems directly to when I stopped taking the contraceptive pill. I had never done well on the contraceptive pill (I think I tried about 8 different kinds because of the side-effects that I experienced on the PILL) and once my husband and I made the difficult decision not to have kids (I have Friedreich’s Ataxia), I had my tubes tied and quit the contraceptive pill.
After a few months of insomnia and other hormonal issues, I heard about the Integrative Medical Centre (which is affiliated with one of South Africa’s leading nutraceutical companies - SOLAL) and made an appointment with one of their doctors. My desire was to explore bio-identical hormonal treatment as an option to deal with my insomnia and hormonal issues. I really wanted to do things naturally. The doctor prescribed GABAtropin (amongst other vitamins etc.) and my insomnia vanished. The only write-up that came with the bottle said: “A superior form of GABA – cycle 2 weeks on, 1 week off, to maintain effectiveness.” That’s it. I’d researched GABA and thought it was safe because it is an amino-acid and I trusted SOLAL, so I religiously took it for four years without qualms. Roughly two years ago my prescription ran out and I phoned the pharmacy at SOLAL to order more – just to discover that they’d discontinued it. No worries, I thought ... I went to the health shop and bought another brand of GABA. This didn’t seem to help at all though, and after not sleeping for more than 2-3 hours a night for a week, I suddenly stopped sleeping entirely. I was absolutely beside myself at this point and I made an appointment with my GP. I am extremely sensitive to medication and, therefore, very reluctant to take anything, but my GP frightened me by telling me that I could die without sleep. She wanted to put me onto small doses of Lexamil (in the morning) and Alprazolam (at night) to help me sleep. “They’re perfectly harmless,” she assured me, “I give it to all my patients who are senior citizens (i.e. sensitive like me) and they do just fine!” I was petrified of taking those drugs, but even more petrified of dying so I agreed to take them. I started sleeping again, but over the next few days other strange symptoms started appearing - nausea, an upset stomach, blurred vision, extreme anxiety, oversensitivity to light and sound, and extreme day-time fatigue. Once again, I was not coping.
I started researching benzodiazepines, antidepressants and the elusive GABAtropin, only to discover, to my horror, that GABAtropin was NOT an amino-acid but actually a benzo-type drug called Phenibut originally manufactured in Russia! My abrupt onset of insomnia suddenly made sense and I contacted SOLAL's pharmacy immediately – informing them about what had happened to me and asking them to explain themselves. They eventually replied via email saying:
“We do NOT advise GABAtropin (Phenibut) for long term use as a tolerance can build up making the risk of rebound very high when stopping. This may make symptoms worse over the long term. For this reason it is VERY important to cycle GABAtropin. The recommended way of cycling is 2 weeks on, 1 week off. Do NOT exceed the recommended label dosages unless on the advice of your healthcare provider. Please note the difference between GABAtropin (Phenibut) and GABA. GABAtropin readily crosses the blood brain barrier and enters the brain where it has anti-anxiety and calming effects. GABA however, very poorly crosses the blood brain barrier, and very little enters the brain. GABA is mostly destroyed by enzymes in the blood stream long before it is able to enter the brain.”
... yet they happily gave it to me for FOUR YEARS years and no-one had ever breathed a word about the dangers to me. And now, thanks to their highly unethical behaviour and lack of transparency, I was completely unable to sleep without chemical assistance and was taking yet another benzo and an antidepressant WITH A WHOLE NEW SET OF SIDE-EFFECTS! I remember feeling so angry and so utterly helpless. Where to now?
About two weekends later my husband brought me home early from church because I couldn’t handle being surrounded by people and was having panic attacks. With tears running down my cheeks and a prayer of desperation in my heart, I turned to the Internet for help and God led me to Point Of Return (POR). Alesandra answered my email within an hour and for the first time in weeks, I felt hopeful again ... I could get my life back without having to resort to taking drugs indefinitely!
I tapered successfully off of Lexamil and Zolpidem (switching from Alprazolam to Zolpidem at night for my taper) and today I am entirely drug-free and I fall asleep every night! Not only that, but I have discovered that my body absolutely loves SUPPORT and it has helped with my FA-symptoms too! I am incredibly grateful to God for leading me to POR two years ago, for Alesandra and Andrea and Terry who tirelessly give of themselves to people like me – people who feel hopeless and helpless and stuck – and for the incredible support and encouragement from all of my fellow “PORRIERS” on the Forum. I couldn’t have done it without any of you!
Bianca (South Africa) Zolpidem, Lexamil
There is always a story behind taking prescription drugs. I have a story.
As I look back on my life I have been fortunate in many ways, at least as to living my dreams. I had good parents who provided me with many opportunities in life. I was the outstanding girl athlete in my graduating class... and that's all I wanted to be. I went to college and majored in physical education along with playing basketball. I met a wonderful guy to marry and we've been together for 50+ years. I had a secret dream of wanting 12 children and was blessed with 11. Added 7 others who came to live with us through the years.
I returned to college when my youngest was in kindergarten. I majored in History, Psychology and Sociology. I did my 5th year to attain my teaching credential and found a job immediately. I continued on to receive a Masters Degree in Counseling.
Up to this time I was on no medications and had had just a couple of surgeries in my entire life. One of those surgeries was when I was 17 years old and had torn the cartilage in my knee, from flying off a toboggan. This left my knee in a locked position making this surgery a necessity. That would become a problem later in life.
In my third year of teaching and coaching I began to experience knee pain. This led to arthroscopic surgeries on both knees with poor results. I was unable to regain motion. My physical therapist spent many hours trying to figure out why I wasn't progressing. After several surgeries I was sent to a Doctor in Los Angeles who co-invented the artificial knee. I had exploratory surgery to check for cancer. I was sent to Scripps Green Hospital for more surgery and put in an intensive rehab program there. Met my first psychiatrist there and was told "it's all in your head". The physical therapist who worked with me told me to ignore him! During this time I was in a new job that required 12 to 14 hours a day. I did lots of exercises to try and get my knees working. What happened then was I lost lots of weight. That was a good thing that turned into a huge problem. Without realizing what I was doing this turned into anorexia. For two years I lost weight. When I got down to 100 pounds my world fell apart completely. I had kidney failure that put me in the hospital one night. I went straight from there into a program for eating disorders which required me to take a year's leave of absence.
I spent time in many eating disorder programs while enduring more knee surgeries. When the doctors couldn't solve the knee issues it was decided to try knee replacements. Now that I have learned new things about my health I know that inflammation was the reason I couldn't regain motion in my knees and those knee replacements, that never worked, were totally unnecessary.
It was during this time period that I had sleep issues for the first time in my life. My family doctor fixed that for me by prescribing 30 Mg of Dalmane.
Knee replacements did not solve my problems. I did recover from anorexia but was put on a multitude of antidepressants while being given many strong painkillers. 6 years after my knee replacements I developed a staph infection in my right knee. It had to be removed and due to other complications I went without a knee for 9 months.
After surviving 30 knee surgeries, 4 shoulder surgeries, 2 wrist surgeries, c-spine surgery, a double fractured pelvis and several other surgeries, not listed here, along with being put on many strong pain meds for long periods of time, I just wanted to live again!
I saw no need for a sleeping pill as the reason I couldn't sleep had been resolved many years before. When I told the doctor I wanted off the sleeping pill he was no help and just suggested going to a different sleeping pill. I stopped taking it all on my own, not realizing I had put myself into a cold-turkey situation. I was very sick and my doctor spent over 6 months sending me to every specialist there was! I was certain I was dying and did end up in the hospital where they found I had an infected gall bladder which was then removed. Later my knee doctor told me I should have died as the infection should have traveled down to my artificial knee. Following the surgery I experimented and realized my "dying" problem was a result of not taking the sleeping pill and I reinstated at 15 MG.
I was always searching for a way off this medicine! Then, in April, while recovering from a shoulder surgery in February of 2015, I found POR, Point of Return. I didn't call I just sent an email to buy the program and was very excited! Andrea helped me get started and, although I have had some tough times during the process and continue to heal to this day, I've never looked back!
My life has been changed for the better by leaps and bounds. God brought me to this program and these amazing and knowledgeable people. I am ever indebted to Alesandra, Andrea and Terry for their unending guidance as I journeyed to freedom from both Dalmane and Tramadol. The supplements designed for the POR program are the absolute best! I am more than med-free, I live my life differently by eating clean and very healthy. I am the healthiest I have been in 25 years. This is a process and requires dedication from the individual and trust in the team. If you want it, it's there! I have it and I love it!
THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart!!! Freedom is sweet and POR has blessed my life beyond measure!
Karole (California) – Dalmane, Tramadol
Christmas is my favourite time of the year. My dreadful nightmare started two days before Christmas Day in year 2011…. It took me an entire year of hard work to awake from the nightmare, so… every Christmas season nowadays becomes my time to reflect on the sweet VICTORY and PEACE of mind I now enjoy. I have every reason to be thankful to my Saviour Jesus Christ and my Angels at Point of Return (POR). A big THANK YOU to Alesandra, Andrea, and Terry for the tireless efforts you put in to guide many of us safely to freedom.
Today I also want to take this opportunity to share with you my before and after pictures as well as my dos-and-don’ts. Hopefully it will help you avoid the painful mistakes I made along the way to freedom.
My psychiatric drug addiction was totally accidental as a result of an innocent but hapless visit to the doctor’s office for the purpose of treating a cold, cough, and lack of sleep (due to each night’s coughing). My M.D. started me on Ativan on Dec. 23 of 2011. It was supposed to be a “harmless” and “temporary” measure. As per my family physician at the time, that is what they supposedly give to children to calm them down and get them to sleep. Unfortunately, my body didn’t agree with this statement. Such an innocent little blue-green magic pill triggered a chain of terrifying reactions… I had my first full-blown panic attack. I was constantly on edge. I was sensitive to light and sound. I developed agoraphobia. I was crying non-stop. Almost overnight I turned into a monster whom I couldn’t even recognize. My doctor didn’t waste any time in diagnosing me as a mental case and subsequently plied me with varieties of anti-anxiety and anti-depressant medications to help control my mental instability. When asked why my illness came on so suddenly, she was unable to offer any answer or explanation. According to her and “the medical experts”, I was a ticking time-bomb at the mercy of some trait which inevitably must run in my family. Well, I guess that was that; no need to question the experts, right? Needless to say, with this sewn-up, blanket conclusion towards so called mentally-ill patients and the lack of understanding of the chemical effects of the meds prescribed, I spiralled downwards during the following five months. I became a test tube for different trail-and-error psychotropic prescriptions as doctors groped and floundered with their Rx pads. Naturally, I sometimes ended up as a regular visitor to the emergency rooms as a result of such “remedies”.
After being cold-turkeyed by my doctor from four benzos and four anti-depressants, I was entirely worn out. I suffered from constant severe headaches as well as severe insomnia. I was an agoraphobiac (besides going to work, I only travelled between my bedroom, kitchen, bathroom, and living room). Constant pain from old injures tortured me day and night. The medications combined with the effects of being withdrawn cold-turkey robbed me my short term memory, ability to concentrate, and ability to even sit still. My life was filled with intrusive fearful thoughts, doom and gloom, self-pity, and guilt.
I had so many check marks on the POR symptom list. The worst part was that I had no idea why all of a sudden I was suffering so much. I googled and searched. All the information which came up pointed towards the one and the only cause: addiction of the very medication I was given to “help” me.
My initial phone call to Alesandra at POR only further confirmed my research: I was turned into a drug addict without my consent by the people I was supposed to have trusted. I could feel the anger and hatred towards my doctor like a volcano ready to burst inside of me. That wasn’t a pretty picture, but it was me before starting the POR program.
At the beginning I couldn’t follow the program whole-heartedly. Agoraphobia, insomnia and severe headaches were the three most pronounced symptoms for me. They had such a tight grip on me, I was constantly feeling overwhelmed. I was also now stigmatized by my family doctor with the labels of several mental illnesses. Although I followed the withdraw schedule and procedure carefully, I had no strength left to deal with the mental or emotional aspects of the withdrawal. Every time I would gather courage to go out to the grocery store, I would end up returning in defeat. I was so afraid that everyone in the store who saw me knew I was a terrible mental case.
I started to read a lot of success stories on the forum. I wanted so much to write one myself one day, but I was so convinced that I didn’t have what it took to get there. My “why me?” attitude didn’t help with the situation either. I distanced myself from God for His apparent refusal to help (on my terms, of course). I also started to distance myself from my family and children because I was so afraid that I might hurt them.
My early journey to freedom was full of bitterness and feelings of defeat, fear and guilt were consuming me alive…. Until …one day, while aimlessly browsing the stored video clips and pictures on my laptop, suddenly one video clip of my baby girl eating her first Cheetos while dancing to The Wiggles caught my eye. At that moment, something inside of me clicked. I started to sob uncontrollably. It felt like a much needed cleanse. For the first time in months, my determined fighter spirit got rekindled. It marked the starting point of my rising out of the hell.
Besides following the withdrawal schedule faithfully, I went to a private doctor and had all the necessary blood work done (as recommended by Alesandra); I incorporated a moderate daily exercise routine which forced me to leave my comfort zone and venture out; I followed a clean and nutritious diet; I found the self-help method most helpful to me; I learned after many painful failed attempts to fall asleep and remain asleep at will. Also during this journey I re-learned to walk with God as best as I knew. I learned to meditate; I taught myself mindfulness and positive thinking. This also provided me with the precious opportunity to discover who I am and what I am called to do.
Frankly speaking, it was definitely not my journey of choice, but it was indeed a necessary journey for me to undergo in order to become who I am today. All the anger, resentment and bitterness had all melted along the way. I learned to forgive myself and others (especially my family doctor who put me through this ordeal). I did not find any miracle cure during this journey. And I didn’t recover immediately after the withdrawal. The healing comes on its own terms and in progressive stages or layers. It takes a lot of hard work and discipline. To think that one will bounce back right after the last drop is unrealistic. The turtle who wins the race typifies the truth on this journey. —- Slowly-but-surely is the way. Today, nearly three years after the last drop, I still discover little healing signs here and there with total joy.
Right after finishing the withdrawal, I slowly eased back into my full-time work schedule. I resumed to my busy shopping life . I threw myself into living life full-bore. Moreover, I even overcame my previous fear of flying and took the whole family to Orlando Disney World in 2013. We went to Great Wolf Lodge in 2014. This year I had Lasik surgery done for both my eyes. We also completed our dream trip of a 10-day vacation to Shanghai, China in October. I no longer over-protect my children. They are both enrolled in swimming lessons, karate lessons, and private violin lessons. I also take my 12 year-old to Second City in Toronto to take weekly improv lessons. I am no longer afraid of having a sleepless night. I have learned to sleep at will; always well-rested. And best of all, I have found my joy in God… and my purpose in Him and His Love.
As we welcome the year 2016, let’s also welcome your freedom and your total recovery together. I have total faith that with a bit of willingness, lots of handwork and discipline, and the loving guidance from POR, you too will succeed!
Happy New Year to you all!
Carolyn A. (Canada) Klonopin, Zopiclone
I want to thank everyone at point of return for helping me to find freedom and realize the peak of my personal health. I have not only become free of prescription medication but I have also been alleviated of the fear, anxiety, stress and incapacitation that used to run my life. I have been off medication now for 8 months thanks to the wonderful support and guidance of POR. Today and everyday is better than the one before it. My mind is clear and sharp. My anxiety is nearly non-existent and my optimism has returned. Point of Return is more than just a way to become free of prescription drugs. It is a reinvention of life as you know it. Our society is poorly nourished and entirely over stressed and disturbingly medicated. Most people feel as if the are healthy when they are merely surviving on a daily basis. To add insult to injury, our medical system believes that covering over this stress with mentally crippling medications is the best long-term solution. The darkest form of survival is living on prescription medication. It robs you of your soul, your energy and your mind. I can't say enough about the potential for freedom and transformation inherent to this process. You don't just go back to surviving. You truly thrive in life once you are off these medications and following program as outlined by Point of Return (POR).
I was always a very tightly wound and driven person. In my younger years I was often aware of my inability to sleep at night, mild tremors, social anxiety and extreme anticipatory anxiety. I had all the clear symptoms of anxiety and stress. It was at times extremely incapacitating but I was able to push through. However, I hadn't built in any great coping mechanisms. Like many people who are placed on these medications, I felt completely overwhelmed in my inability to cope with the feelings inside of me. I had no real guidance in terms of health and wellness. I thrived on stress and treated accomplishment like a drug. I tried natural paths to healing but felt very dismayed by the medical community which never offered to help me find healing via nutrition and exercise. The answer was always a quick fix or ignoring the root of the problem. I shied away from these quick fixes for most of my young adult life. After college, a series of very difficult challenges from my mother’s heart attack to an abusive relationship that resulted in the loss of my job and community pushed my already chronic anxiety to a breaking point. I went from a very capable young investment banker to a girl being abused and alienated from most of her community. I could no longer ignore what I was feeling or push through the overwhelming anxiety. The doctors diagnosed me with anxiety disorder and said that I would have to be on medication for the remainder of my life. At this point I was barely 25 years old and to me that sounded like a life long prison sentence. I had no idea that it would be as bad as it was to attempt life on prescription drugs. Within a year of taking the medication I no longer slept at night. I was horribly sick and my anxiety reached levels that I can't describe. I had to leave graduate school and move home with my parents. I simply couldn't handle the pressure of 3am business calls, tight deadlines and travel overseas. I knew something had to change. My sleep had become non-existent. I no longer felt in touch with who I truly was. I wanted my freedom back and I couldn't stand my mind/ body being held captive. One fateful night I found Point of Return (POR) online. At the time I was living in Australia for school. I opted to pack my bags and return home for my first call with Dr. Armstrong. I was on a mission to regain my wellness and take back control of my life. That was the single best decision I have ever made. Dr. Armstrong is the reasons I am alive and thriving today. I can't say enough about what an inspiring, kind, intelligent and resilient person he is. I'm so grateful for him, Alesandra and Terry. They have changed the course of my life in such an amazing way.
My path to reinvention was fraught with stops and starts. I am not a risk taker in the conventional sense of the word. I like to know how things will turn out and my inner desire for control was ever present. Dr. Armstrong provided an inspiring safe place for me to let go of my fear and take a leap of faith. He knew that I needed to move slowly, methodically and work through my fear issues prior to starting my journey. He created a failure proof path for my return to freedom and the best possible version of myself. All I had to enlist was my internal drive to never give up. Both of these things were accessible due to my understanding of all that Dr. Armstrong himself had overcome. For me, he was much more than a doctor, he was my mentor in recovery and healing. It took me two and a half years but I have made it. I'm so proud of the person I am today thanks to Dr. Armstrong and the support of POR. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving me back life and the capacity to do everything I always dreamed I could do.
Lauren W. (New York) Klonopin
My story began like so many: several years ago I had to have much needed sinus surgery. I was in very poor health at the time and counted myself fortunate that the doctor whom I consulted after many attempts to find someone who could help me, found the covert, but nonetheless significant sinus issues. Being quite worn out by my ailing body, I wanted nothing more urgently than to find my way out of these debilitating health problems. I therefore followed the doctor’s (surgeon’s) instructions lamblike. He told me that I must take Valium for at least 2 weeks after surgery in order for the muscles to relax and to heal faster.
When shortly after surgery I was unable to sleep, constantly broke out in sweats and when I became increasingly sensitive to noise, no one knew why….. Sound familiar? “Just menopausal women’s problems” - sounds familiar too? Needless to say, I never got off of Valium and was told by various doctors that “since I was not the addictive type of individual”, it was okay for me to continue taking Valium. I hated the pills but couldn’t get rid of them if I wanted to function at all.
Several years and several diagnoses later, I decided to throw the pills away, trusting that my body would eventually learn to sleep again without. Needless to say - I ended up in the ER not long after and got prescribed - guess what - Ativan for anxiety.
I searched the internet high and low and finally found the Ashton Manual and then a psychiatrist who was willing to help me with my taper and told me he was an expert. Since there are very few doctors who know anything about this matter, I trusted him implicitly. He added Klonopin to the regimen and told me that this was a good deal - I could get rid of the Valium very easily being supported by Klonopin and since I was not yet dependent on Klonopin, tapering off of that one would go really fast….
I got off the Valium reasonably well, but about half way into the Klonopin taper I started to “break down neurologically”. I continued the taper anyway, though at a much slower pace than was suggested to me. I finally reached the point where I felt as if I was withdrawing cold turkey: more frequent spasms, increasing generalized pain, poor concentration, sometimes high anxiety levels, etc. etc.
It was at this point that I searched the internet again for the umpteenth time, feeling that there had to be someone out there who knew how to get off of these drugs without the patient becoming completely debilitated and dysfunctional in the process.
Thank God I didn’t give up and found Point of Return. I didn’t trust any of these rehab clinics either as I knew from my own experience and from reading dozens of reports, that “the fast track” doesn’t work.
I cannot say enough with regard to the kind, consistent and expert type of support I received from POR. Here was a group of people who had been through the nightmare and took their experience as a basis to search for and find better solutions and to help others! I couldn’t believe it!
I was advised to talk to my doctor and decided to reinstate some of the Klonopin so that I would feel somewhat stable. I did so promptly and ordered the program - doing any and everything I could do, to get out of this nightmare of a “neurological meltdown”.
No words can describe what it meant to me to be able to get such prompt advise and support even during the holidays (it was around Christmas time!). When I found I could not increase “Support” - the special whey protein, without increased sleep problems and anxiety, I was advised to do the saliva test for MTHFR. Assuming the results of the test would be positive, which they were, I started to take the supplements recommended to treat MTHFR, and lo and behold, I was able to increase “Support” to the recommended level and start my taper soon after.
I began to realize that MTHFR had been trailing me all along, causing my inability to detoxify mercury from the amalgam fillings properly, sleeping problems etc. In Point of Return (POR) I found a group of people who not only helped me with my taper from Klonopin, but also were instrumental in helping me uncover another health issue that can be remedied so easily, but can - if left untreated - cause multi-faceted health issues.
It is fair to say that without the supplements and the kind support from POR, it would have been very difficult for me to complete my taper, which thankfully I did, on July 21st 2015. I am still awed that there are people out there who have no ulterior motives and simply dedicate their time and resources to help others who are caught in the nasty snares of extremely toxic prescription drugs and professional ignorance.
POR has built a bridge for me by which I was able to confidently cross the torrential waters of a complex neurological quagmire. Yes, I have to deal with post withdrawal symptoms - who doesn’t? But to this day, when impatience and doubt occasionally catch up with me, I can pick up the phone and call POR and receive the staff’s unfailing reassurance! Words cannot describe how much this means to me. And the supplements - I may take some of them till the end of my days! Just recently I had to go out of town for a couple of weeks and forgot MOOD at home; however, MOOD did not forget me! I started to have significant intestinal problems as well as increased anxiety levels and even some low mood. As soon as I got “reunited” with MOOD, all this resolved! It just does not cease to amaze me.
Thank you POR, thank each and everyone of you for your unceasing dedication and encouragement given so freely to people all over the world!
Iris S. (California) - Klonopin
Hello all my beloved POR friends and angels,
It is finally here after 81/2 long months WOOHOO!!!
I am finishing tomorrow.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart to Alesandra-she is truly a hero to me and I don't say that lightly, she help save my life and I will forever be thankful, I also am honored to count Alesandra as friend. I Thank God who healed me and the scriptures I held on to during the dark times. Thank you my savior!
Thank you Terry you are always up on the phone and get me my supplements when I need them I always call last minute before I run out and you managed to get them to me Thank you my friend.
Thank you Andrea for your encouragement. Thank you Elisa Ruth my friend I read and reread your journey multiple times for encouragement you are so brave and are such a wordsmith, thank you my friend for your support I felt it. I Love You!
Bobby Jean, I also read your journey over and over again for inspiration. You were also very heroic and knowledgeable. thank you for the encouragement I Love you too.
Athena you are hard core brave girl thanks for the push when I needed it I count you as one of my angels.
Wendy, Thank you for walking the path and also turning back to give those following in your footsteps a hand, God Bless you my friend and Thank you.
This started out as something given to me by my doctor to help with the stress after mom broke her neck and had a traumatic brain injury. I cut it in quarters and took it for a short month or two sporadically. But when I stopped I thought I was dying but did not know why.. One day in the shower God told me it was that med I had stopped. Then I called someone who had been successful at Point of Return and I made the call and also worked with Dr Armstrong who made me go slow and steady against my wishes he was right.
I was the prodigal child I left and went to a rehab only to leave after a couple days knowing there was no quick fix.
Then I came home talked to Alesandra and committed to the program by Point of Return (POR) and only POR.
Well I am so blessed and humbled to be finishing Thank you and God bless you all as I enter Alumni land WOOHOO!!
Thank you God and my angels at POR , Love you Alesandra
Kathy A. (New York) - Klonopin
As of today, I have been free of drugs for nearly 7 months. I spent 5 1/2 months tapering off oxycodone and zolpidem at home and will never touch those or any other prescription drugs again (even over-the-counter). Point of Return connected me with a physician who prescribed a liquid form of oxy so that I could reduce it by small amounts every week, as pill-cutting is a very poor way to taper. They also provided amazing nutritional products that helped the body to detoxify slowly. The one entitled, "Support", the horrible feelings of withdrawal literally melt away, almost like magic, after every dose.
Their team assisted me through the whole process so that I never felt alone, plus they have a wonderful forum whose members daily offer kind and caring support to each other and the benefit of their own actual experiences. My doctor was not willing to be informed and was of no help whatsoever. These people supported and encouraged me by phone, email and on their forum. They are always there, without fail, for everyone using their program and thousands of people have been successful because of them and their knowledge.
I will always be grateful to everyone at Point of Return and to my Mother for guiding me to them!!
L.N. (California) - Zolpidem, Oxycodone
Dear Alesandra, Dr. Code, Dr. Armstrong, Roy, Dr. Sadeghi, Andrea, Terry, and all participants in the POR Forum,
Thank you SO much for providing me with the ultimate healing path out of a very deep obscure iatrogenic reality that almost cost my life! I still have to pinch myself every now and then to believe that it actually happened! I'm alive! Totally in a state of humble awe! It's already been 6 months since I successfully completed my taper, and time continues to fly by now, because I am actually living life! Sure there are post taper withdrawal symptoms! How can it not? But look! I'm here! I'm active, I'm productive, I'm sleeping non-zombie hours again, and so so very happy! It is such a wonderful feeling to be able to live life again, to look in my husband's and children's eyes and realize that they know that I'm back, and doing well! Simple things all of a sudden became awesome, like hearing nature sounds, feeling the texture of various surfaces, the simple act of breathing... Wow! If I could only share all details here... It would amaze anyone! Yes, I have happy tears of joy! How can I not? Freedom at last! Whoohoo!
I would like to share that besides POR's nutraceuticals, POR's guidance, and POR's outstanding reassuring support, POR has introduced me to the most amazing network of people, and specially, to an outstanding group of diligent medical professionals that unlike several out there, treat me as a whole being! Customizing my taper and post taper program to address my special needs, including addressing the terrifying side effects of iatrogenic electric convulsive therapy to cover up for the irresponsible benzo overprescription, has ultimately saved my life, and set me towards a path of achieving total health! Every step that I've taken after encountering POR has not only benefited me, but my immediate family, tremendously! My husband and children now truly understand the harsh reality of going through iatrogenic withdrawal! All the yoyo symptoms mimicking non-existing diseases! It was so so hard on all of us! From being okay to all of a sudden having vertigo, dizziness, oscillating blood pressure, memory/speech impairment, irritability, depersonalization, derealization, etc. 24/7! We were all beyond exhausted! And to think that this all started with a simple treatment for my hypothyroid! Unbelievable how it escalated into an alarming psychiatric iatrogenic madness!
What has been the key to my success? POR's outstanding professional knowledge, diligence, on going research, patience, trust, phenomenal caring guidance through personal visits, working as a team with my local doctors, checking on my progress, phone calls, emails, texts, and POR's Forum support - my new extended family! Simple words cannot express my profound gratitude!
I look forward to continuing my post taper healing along side POR, sharing my experience out there to bring very much needed awareness, so others are not victims of irrational bad medicine, and most definitely, in helping those who are going through similar life reality!
Thank you, thank you,thank you, POR! You gave me my life back! Wow! Cheers to total health!
With profound gratitude,
Marcia B. (California) - Valium
It is a blessing to sit and write the ending to the single most horrific time of my life. After waking up one night with an anxiety attack (I had no idea at the time what that even was), I started down a road of fear, anxiety, and stress that led to a time I will joyfully forget. Unfortunately, stuck in the middle was a well-intentioned, but ignorant, doctor who prescribed Klonopin and Celexa. My entire family was so unfamiliar with drugs of this sort, we trustingly followed right along. They seemed to help for a few months; I was even discussing the beginning of tapering off of them with my doctor when I found out I was (at the ripe old age of 44) expecting my 6th child. My call to the doctor ended with him telling me "quit the meds and just try to enjoy the good days you have."
I don't have to describe to most of you the cold-turkey hell. Another doctor put me back on to taper me off "slowly". 6 months later, my sister, by the grace of God, found Point of Return's website. I called them, and we quickly decided that these were people who could lead me back to the life I loved and longed for. Alesandra, Andrea, and Terry are household words around here now. The unfailing confidence in my recovery, the listening to my worries, reassuring me at every little setback that I was not crazy was often the only thing I had to hold on to. My loving, but terrified, family relied as heavily as I have on these beautiful, selfless people.
When I was 8 months pregnant, I seriously began to doubt my ability to survive this journey. I was then introduced to Dr. Armstrong. His comforting, fatherly voice and wonderful, personal story as well as the wisdom he used in reinstating the meds to help me go off so very slowly was priceless. Another person to add to this group who I may never meet but with whom I have shared my deepest hopes and fears.
I am currently 7 months past the end of my taper. I have seen such healing and relearned how to trust myself. I can rest in my faith in God who surrounded me with those who carried me day in and day out. I will never say it was easy-it was not ever easy. I will say it is possible and it will end in victory if you follow the advice of these very wise people. One of the smartest things I have ever done is to follow their advice to the letter and turn to them when I could find no answer anywhere else. The return of joy in my home and happiness on the faces of my children make me confident that you, too, will find hope at Point of Return.
Susanne M. (Kentucky) - Celexa, Klonopin
I just want to say thank you to all of you for helping me at the very worst time of my life. I had so many bad things happen to me in late 2013 and most of 2014. First it was my lower back pain. Then it was adrenal fatigue from stress from the job primarily, and then it was major panic attacks and anxiety issue, and the it was trying to get off Ativan and Lexapro to deal with my anxiety and panic attacks, and then I quit drinking wine every day in March 2014. So many issues. I am completely free of the meds and going on 1 year of no alcohol, even though my Doctor told me I was not an alcoholic I still used wine to help me sleep and de-stress from work. I do both without wine now. Talking to all your staff, and Dr Armstrong helping me get off the meds was so great.
I have used all your supplements, and your supplement Sleep is all I use besides chamomile tea to get myself to sleep now. I can't tell you enough how much I appreciate Point of Return. I would refer to anyone I know who had similar problems as I had. Thanks.
Bob G. (California) - Lexapro, Ativan
I was given a prescription of Klonopin during a horrific time in my life, I was caring for 2 sick parents. In January of 2007 I was told this medication would ease my stress and help me relax, and it wasn’t addicting. Little did I know I’d be on it for 7 1/2 years.
Klonopin stopped working for me in about November of 2007, the doctor then doubled my dose, and I became a zombie, with little care in the world. I quickly returned to the lower dose. It was then that I was given Ativan to use on days when Klonopin wasn’t helping. What I was never told is the symptoms I was having were from the Klonopin. I was unable to take Ativan, and I did not continue taking it. I just continued the original Klonopin dose, while suffering from the side effects.
The me that I knew was gone, I no longer had a drive for life, I gained 45 lbs., I developed hyperthyroidism, adrenal fatigue, burning mouth, tremors, blurred vision, inability to concentrate, moodiness, hostility, continual heart palpitations, muscle fatigue, digestion issues, and migraine! I’m sure there are more symptoms, but you get the gist. I knew I needed to get off Klonopin, so, knowing that and remembering what my doctor had said, “it’s not addicting” I quit taking it! Oh, was that a crazy ride, It wasn’t long before I was crawling the walls with panic, sweating, heart beating so fast I couldn’t breathe, I knew I needed to take a Klonopin, and that’s when I learned it was addicting and I was going to need help getting off this medication! So, I went to my GP and he told me I’d have to go to a Psychiatrist. I made an appointment and went only to be told, this is a lifetime medication, meaning I’d be on it for life! So, I thought I’d try a different rout, and I made an appointment with a Psych-Nurse to get her take. She said I could go on Valium, then onto Xanax, then wean down from there! Ok, I’d try it, if it meant being med free. Well, it didn’t work, and when I went back for a follow up appointment, her words were, “I’m not surprised, but you had to learn for yourself, there isn’t an exit plan for Klonopin”! I felt set up and lied to, I lost hope of ever getting off this drug! I began to pray and ask God for a way off this medication. After 2 years of prayer and hopelessness, I was listening to a TV show where Alesandra was sharing her testimony, and I faintly heard her say she went off Klonopin, my ears piped up and I had to rewind and listen again! I immediately e-mailed her, and ordered her book to find out more about her story, and after talking this over with my husband he was all in for me getting help from Point of Return! I called and spoke to Andrea and ordered the protocol. I started the protocol and 41 weeks later I was finished, off the Klonopin (killer K, as I call it). The road to freedom wasn’t easy, but with the help of the staff, and the forum, it was possible. As I write this I’ve been Klonopin free for 3 weeks, and I’m returning to normal more each day. I will forever be thankful for Point of Return, the Staff and the forum for making this journey possible!
Janice W., (Indiana) - Klonopin
During my benzodiazepine tapering I would occasionally read success stories, but I always kept in mind that for all we shared in common, there were things that were unique to me, just like they are for you.
Point of Return (POR) shares success stories like mine. I was already more than halfway through when I called POR and spoke with Terry and Alesandra. They didn’t mind I was coming in kind of late in the game. Their concern was there for my health and me. It would have been nice if I had found POR from day one, but I regress, so here’s to cutting to the chase, and the rest of the story.
The first benzo prescription came in 1993, which was the result of a severe panic attack. I had an employee who had just gone through a heartbreaking divorce and resorted to shooting up the office along with threats of killing everyone. The situation got resolved and within a week I experienced a full blown panic attack. After calling 911, carted to the ER, given a clean bill of health, I was told to see my doctor for a follow-up. I found a doctor in my area and he proceeded to tell me he had just the thing for me. I’d be “right as rain” in no time. Here’s your Ativan with six refills, and don’t worry, it’s very safe and reliable. Please pay on your way out, and have a nice life.
After nineteen years of benzo’s, I finished the taper, and am now into the healing phase. My taper took much longer than most, but finishing is finishing, so I’m cool with that. If you’re reading this, you have an advantage I didn’t have when I started tapering. You know about Point of Return. Advantage yourself. What POR gave to me in my later stages of tapering was enormous. I can easily imagine the benefits from day one had that been available to me.
There are a few things I could etch in stone. I’d rather go through the turmoil’s of tapering successfully than resort to eating a pill to maintain some sense of balance. After spending lots of time and money with failed results, there’s only one place I’d recommend to a best friend or a complete stranger….Point of Return….period.
Being able to dip into “the full toolbox of resources” at Point of Return, will take you to a place of complete recovery and health. After all my years of bogus plans of treatment with broken promises and heartache, trust me on this one…these people are the real deal. I know what doesn’t work. I’ve been there more than a few times.
What I realized right from the get-go is that Alesandra and Terry are not throwing a sales pitch. What you’re getting are people with the scars of experience, the dedication that only comes from tested knowledge and the patience and wisdom of having walked the walk themselves. Do you really want to trust someone who hasn’t been there, done that?
When you get through with your taper you’ll feel like me. I thought when I finished tapering I’d feel special. I didn’t. I feel accomplished. Everyone’s special, not everyone is accomplished. Be accomplished. It’s something you carry the rest of your life. That’s special!
Mark E., (Texas) - Ativan, Clonazepam
My journey into hell started when I had a rather bad case of a cold in 2011… … I was given big dose of Cipro, an asthma puffer, an antibiotic eye cream, and an antibiotic nasal spray by my family doctor to help me get through the tough cold. I had never taken any prescription medications before this, and I was always very cautious with over-the-counter medicationsl. I didn’t know what possessed me, maybe I was just so sick. At any rate, I followed my doctor’s instructions religiously. Just after one dose of Cipro my stomach started to hurt terribly. Then, shortly after, I started to have strange sweats as if I was menopausal (though I wasn’t even yet 40). Shortly afterwords, the panicky feelings followed. (I was never a panicky individual in my whole life and never prone to anxiety attacks.) Lastly, I started to have severe insomnia, which was something I’d never experienced before this. I could sleep through a collapsing mineshaft. Both my husband and I were concerned, so we went back to my doctor’s office to seek help (this was two days before Christmas). By this point, I hadn’t slept well for quite a few weeks. I have two young children and a full time job, so I could not afford to go on like this. I needed some answers and real help quick. Within two minutes of seeing me, she gave me Ativan and reassured me that even my then 3 year-old daughter could take it, - that’s how “safe" and non-addictive it was. Put this way, I was extremely grateful for her RX and, of course, began to take it without giving it a second thought. Within the next 4 months, I was feeling worse and worse the more she tried to "help" me by putting me on new pills. I never liked any of the wonder drugs she gave me, but I tried them all (owing to my own ignorance), giving my MD the benefit of the doubt. My attitude was: Of course she must know what she’s doing - after all, she’s an MD! Needless to say, I was in and out of the ER almost once a week. I gave every possible "remedy" a try, as I was only too willing / eager to get better. But the more I tried, the worse I felt. I was weak, confused, and terrified. I became very anti-social, paranoid and house-bound. Consequently, I could not even step outside for more than five minutes without the help of my 9 year-old daughter.
At the end of my rope, I got desperate. I started searching the internet for answers.
I found Point of Return (POR) in April of 2012. I called Alesandra at least three times before committing myself to the program. By then, (and understandably) I had grown quite cynical and even bitter after having been taken by either the medical industry or so-called natural miracle cures so many times. Thankfully, Alesandra never displayed the least hint of impatience in her voice during all of our three long conversations. She listened, comforted and encouraged me so lovingly. She also demonstrated a very welcome and deep understanding of the mess I'd got myself into. For the first time in my long and dark four months of struggle, I saw HOPE. By the time I joined POR, I had cold-turkeyed from Ativan, Cipralex, and cut my dose of Klonopin by 25%, as well as still being on 75% of the Klonopin and Zopiclone doses. I was in a terrible place. Shattered describes it. Eventually, with help from POR, I tapered off all the poisons I put into my body. As we all know, It was not a walk in the park: I had LOTS of symptoms, but I resisted the temptation to reinstate with subsequent tapering. Armed with the ultimate goal of freedom in my mind, I kept on with the program of dropping the doses. Naturally, there were many days in which I was totally out of commission. I was convinced so firmly - or bought into the lie - that I was the only one who was not going to heal…that somehow I was the exception. I was deluded into thinking I didn’t have what it took to succeed in recovery. During this period of the abyss, I have to credit my dear friends at POR who never gave up on me and provided mainstay, unswerving support. I could ALWAYS count on Alesandra to lend me a loving and encouraging hand. I could ALWAYS count on Andrea to give me the much needed firm-but-straight talk. I could ALWAYS count on Terry to get my package delivered with lightning speed. I could ALWAYS count on Carol (Delaware), Bobby-Jean, Maggie, Athena, E-R, Chris 2, Cara, Rachel, Wendy, Kristie and others to send me the encouragement so badly needed at the most uncanny moments. For this, I can only count them as Heaven-sent. I am also grateful to my most wonderful husband and amazing kids. They stood by me thick and thin, to put it mildly. WE, all of us, got through this gruelling and frightful ordeal TOGETHER. We are stronger together as a family, as a result; there can be no doubt or gainsaying that.
By the end of 2012, I was finally drug free. Hallelujah. I could not have made it without the help from all of my POR friends and family. I was not the most deligient one in the program, but l made it, nonetheless.
Today, I am 16 months off all meds. The fear and panicky feeling went within three months after the completion of the taper, but the physical symptoms took a lot longer to go. I still have a few minor annoyances left even as of today, but I truly don’t mind those because I know, given enough time, they too will leave. Difficulty with sleep? With the root cause gone, this has all, thank God, evaporated! I no longer have any trouble sleeping. (Last night, we apparently had a vigourous thunder shower; as far as I was concerned, however, it might as well have happened in Outer Mongolia.) These days I keep a very busy schedule: not just full-time, but a lot of over-time on the job. I take my children to different activities - as a matter of fact we just came back from a nearly two week trip to Disney World. I pushed my youngest one in a stroller throughout the parks under the hot sun. We spent at least 5 hours each day exploring the parks, with lots of standing and walking. I handled it easily. Just a year ago I would not even dared to plan even a partial day-trip within my own home province of Ontario. I walk 3 miles a day. I do a lot of reading. I console people who have stressful situations. I can positively attest that life after drugs is truly amazing.
So, by all accounts, my accidental drug addiction brought me to the lowest low of my life. It humbled me, but brought me into a glorious new understanding of love, peace, and joy. I no longer carry any prejudice against drug addicts. Only sympathy. I now have more gratitude and appreciation towards life, my family, my friends, my job … … I am no longer bitter, and I can’t even get angry at my doctor any more. (I am actually grateful for this detour in my life.) I enjoy this NEW ME far better than the me before prescription agents. Life is FULL for me now.
With all my earnestness, I would say: if you are suffering terribly and can’t see the way out, I am here now to tell you please DO NOT lose heart - there IS hope. You WILL make it. Life after pills is like heaven. Please TRUST POR. TRUST their personnel. They DO understand, they possess the knowledge, and their programme and products WORK. Until this day, I still take the recommended therapeutic levels of Support and Mood. My head is clear and I have not had any colds or flu for more than a year.
Miracles will happen if you don’t give up and you are your own Miracle Maker.
Carolyn A, (Canada) - Klonopin, Zopiclone
When I found Point of Return, I was in a very dark place. I was extremely ill and wasn’t sure how to make it through the next day or hour, much less continue on with my life. I was praying and crying out to God for an answer, for relief, for a way out of the nightmare I had found myself in. I remember coming across the Point of Return website after a desperate Internet search and thinking maybe, just maybe, I had found a resource that could help. I talked on the phone with Alesandra and was instantly reassured that what I was going through was real, and that there was hope of recovery. Those two things meant everything to me at the moment.
My story began in childhood, really. After struggling for many years with severe anxiety and intensifying symptoms of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), my parents and I went to see a psychiatrist in my teens. I was prescribed and tried many different drugs from the age of 14 onward, hoping for something to help ease the mental agony that I was battling. Often the effects of the drugs made things worse, or I began to have side effects that made it necessary to stop. I ended up on Zoloft when I was 17, and remained on a high dose through my teens and into my twenties. During that time I did much hard work with a gifted Cognitive Behavioral therapist and was finally able to function and approach life as a happy and balanced young adult. However, the psychiatrist told me that because of the severity of the issues I had dealt with, I would need to be on medication for life to correct my “chemical imbalance.” After all I had been through, I saw the drug as a lifesaver and never questioned that advice.
Flash forward to my mid-twenties, when I began to suffer from various physical illnesses and mysterious symptoms that grew worse as time went on. My life came to a grinding, bitter halt as I dealt with daily, debilitating sickness and physical distress. The absolute worst symptom that I dealt with was a constant, extreme nausea that left me unable to function and wore down at my endurance and will. I suffered from severe gastrointestinal issues, fatigue, migraine headaches, chills, insomnia, weakness, muscle pain, dizziness, and many other difficult issues on a daily basis. I dropped out of school, postponed my wedding, and was focused on merely surviving. I found no answers after many visits to the doctor, specialists, and a desperate trip to the ER where I was told I had the flu and given anti-nausea meds. Months, and then years went by in confusion and desperation. During this time I was given a prescription from my family doctor for Klonopin. He described it as a mild drug that would help me cope with the anxiety the mysterious illness was causing and allow me get some sleep.
I took the Klonopin on an “as needed basis” and noticed certain new, troubling symptoms cropping up. I began to get horrific panic attacks and a constant feeling of restlessness and derealization. After about 6 weeks of taking the medication sporadically, I decided to quit. No one had warned me of cold turkey withdrawals or the dangers of benzodiazepine drugs. There are no words to describe the horrific experience I went through those few days in cold turkey withdrawal. I can’t imagine an experience more horrifying or hellish. I eventually reinstated the drug after talking with my doctor. After that, I tried tapering down on my own at a slower pace, but with no success. I felt trapped. I felt awful while on the drug, and trying to tapering off on my own had always brought me to a place that was unbearable - adding twitching, uncontrollable shaking, panic, intense depression, suicidal thoughts, dizziness, vision changes, dry heaving and bizarre neurological symptoms on top of the health issues I was already dealing with. I began to fully realize the intensity and danger of psychotropic medications, and it was terrifying. I honestly feared I would be caught in this trap for the rest of my life.
Enter Point of Return, and the program I consider a true turning point for my health. I started the naturaceuticals and began to feel relief within a few weeks. With the help of the supplements and the constant wise and compassionate input from Alesandra, Andrea and Terry, I was able to stabilize and begin to see a small light at the end of the tunnel. I clung to that and doggedly pursued my way toward healing, choosing to believe in the program. That belief and hope has been fulfilled beyond what I could have imagined!
After stabilizing, I was able to enjoy an absolutely miraculous and beautiful wedding, beginning a new life with my husband. I began the tapering process to become free from Klonopin just after my honeymoon. There were many ups and downs, challenges and difficult moments. Many complex and confusing interactions and new twists to the situation had to be worked out. Throughout the journey, everyone at Point of Return and the fellow fighters on the forum were always there for me, helping me to keep believing, keep my determination, and continue the struggle towards healing and hope. After the dust settled at the end of each consecutive taper, I would notice a lessening of symptoms. Each small step brought me more clarity, more relief, and a sense that I was moving closer to my old self. I became free of Klonopin in April of 2012. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I would not have been able to achieve this freedom without the help of POR and their supplementation. POR made the impossible, possible.
I began to find answers to some of my issues working with holistic and integrative doctors, including a diagnosis of Celiac disease, food intolerances, parasites, some genetic anomalies causing issues with methylation, mitochondrial insufficiency, adrenal stress, and more. These issues likely contributed greatly to my original diagnosis of OCD and anxiety disorder. I began to learn so much about true health, and about the diet and lifestyle changes that are essential to healing. However, I continued to have severe nausea and many debilitating symptoms. After much prayer and searching for answers, my family and my doctors realized it was time to eliminate Zoloft, as it was likely contributing to my nausea and ongoing struggle.
In the fall of 2012 I began the process of tapering off of Zoloft, continuing to utilize the Point of Return program. It was the most difficult journey of my life, one that tested my faith in God and every ounce of my strength, endurance, and trust. I was so ill during this time, and tapering was difficult. During the year of 2012 and 2013 I learned more about true suffering and true courage than I likely will ever experience again. Throughout the entire process, POR was a continual resource for hope, insight, advice, and encouragement. I can confidently say that their supplements and the discontinuation of the drugs have been the single most helpful intervention in helping me regain my health. The advice and direction I have received from Alesandra and Andrea have never steered me wrong. They have gently and firmly pointed me in the right direction time after time. God has truly used POR in mighty ways to help me regain my health and my hope.
Today, I mark the one year anniversary of my freedom from Zoloft. After over 10 years of putting psychiatric medications in my body, I am at last free of all pharmaceuticals at the age of 27. My healing has skyrocketed, and I continue to notice positive changes nearly every day. The further I get from the drugs, the closer my body and mind grow toward true health and wholeness. I am continuing to pursue natural, integrative-based healthcare and I am learning more and more all the time. I still have a journey ahead of me and some complex health issues to work out, but I know now that thorough my long ordeal, Jesus never left my side, nor will He in the future. I know now that full healing is possible, and I am pursuing it with all of the new energy and experience that I’ve gained.
I have come from a place of horrific darkness and unbearable suffering to a place of light, healing, hope, and joy. My symptoms are fading day by day, and many times I stop and stand amazed at the fullness that is flooding back into my life. I am no longer housebound. I am no longer bedbound. I am no longer crippled by the terrible bondage of the drugs and fear. In those dark days, I could not have imagined standing where I am today, speaking with the joy and confidence that I now have. And yet I am here, by the grace of my Savior. Each day that comes is filled with renewal, increased strength, and a determination to not let my story go unspoken. Life has become beautiful and meaningful again.
Thank you, POR, for the great part you have played in my story of healing. I will remain forever grateful.
Miranda E., (Colorado) - Zoloft
I just wanted to say that I hope you had a Merry Christmas yesterday, and I want to wish you the brightest of all New Years. But most of all, I want to thank you again for saving my life 6 years ago when I seemed to be without hope of ever living another day. At year's end, I will go for 300 lbs. on the bench press (285 was lifted 4 months ago), and I will surpass 107,000 of running over 49 years. I believe that feat is not too bad for a 68 year old who was on his deathbed with a .38 caliber pistol, loaded and already cocked, held to my temple area until the Holy Spirit quickened my spirit and told me to put the gun down and that help would surely come. It came the next day on a Sunday afternoon when you answered my email in short order.
I will forever be grateful for your help, and I continue to tell others about your marvelous program of drug recovery when the opportunity presents itself. I will never forget you and your compassion toward me and so many others. You are the "Mother Teresa" of your day. I will continue to save the 1.5 inch stack of our email correspondence during the darkest days of my life as an ever present reminder of you and your amazing program of recovery from the toxic prescription psychotropics. God bless you is my ever present prayer.
Tom G., (Alabama) - Temazepam, Lexapro
About 8 years ago, when I was busy raising my children, I went to my Doctor complaining of not being able to sleep. She told me that she had an answer for me and handed me a prescription for this "magic" little pill called Tamazepam. I was very nervous about taking it because I very rarely took any medication, including over-the-counter, but I felt so desperate for sleep that I took the pill. It was amazing, I fell asleep immediately and slept through the night. I was sure that this pill was a miracle.
Fast forward about seven years. In October of 2011, I was having ear problems and went to see an Ear, Nose and Throat doctor. He proceeded to prescribe a very high dose of Prednisone to take away inflammation and told me to take it for 10 days and then just stop taking it. From that day on, my life became a nightmare. Sleep was not to be had even after my doctor doubled my dose of Tamazepam, I was having brain zaps, I was tingling all over, trembling, and many other horrible symptoms.
It was at that time that I became desperate for an answer as to what was going on. After searching for hours on the internet, I came across the Point of Return website. I dialed the number three or four times and hung up before I had the nerve to speak with someone on the other end. When I finally completed the call, I left a message and within about ten minutes an angel named Alesandra called me back. I was a blubbering mess and she was able to calm me down and told me everything I was so desperate to hear, and that was that I was not crazy and what I was probably going through was tolerance withdrawal from the Tamazepam. Everything Alesandra said made sense and gave me great hope. My life as I had known it was gone and here was this beautiful voice telling me that everything would be okay and that I could get my life back.
After switching to Clonazepam to taper, I began a 10 month journey back to life. The process was difficult but with the support of the POR staff and the loving support that I received on their private forum, I made that journey back. It has been 13 months since I took my last Benzodiazepine and I feel so free. My beautiful life that I treasured so much is returning to me and because of Point of Return, I will soon be starting nursing school, at the ripe old age of 48, and I can hardly wait. If you are reading this and feel that there is no hope left, pick up the phone and make that life changing phone call. I promise you that you will not regret it.
Cara H., (New Mexico) - Temazepam, Clonazepam
I pretty much went into or on to my meds with my eyes open. I knew that any relative of Valium was addictive. At the time I didn’t care. I wanted to sleep. That is why the doctor prescribed Dalmane for me. I had no idea it had so many other uses but I should have figured: it pretty much calmed me down, probably got me through menopause without too much fuss, and of course it got me through the middle of the night, a time that still plagues me.
Fast forward 12 or 13 years--it was time to try and stop. I was coming back to the US after living abroad for over a decade. I thought that it might be difficult to continue getting the drug and decided to come off of it. I cut the pill in half—BIG MISTAKE! Next thing I know I have rampant mouth sores and I can’t figure out why. Sound familiar? When I surfed the internet to find out what could be causing it, lo and behold, I found Point of Return (POR). Now I treasure any little mouth sore because it reminds me of where I’d be if not for POR, if not for Alesandra, Andrea, Terry and my fabulous POR family, all of whom are wise in so many ways. I’m proud to be a part of this family. When I received my certificate of completion I was prouder than when I received my college degree. That was so much easier!
I have been drug free for a little over 6 months now and most of the symptoms I dealt with during my taper are gone. I am still eating clean and still using the nutraceuticals, which are integral to the process. I have learned patience, I have learned how to not panic if I can’t fall back asleep, and I’m constantly learning new things about myself all the time. I’m not 100% yet, but I’m so much closer to that new woman.
THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU.
I LOVE YOU ALL,
Athena S. (California) - Dalmane
Prescription psychiatric medications destroyed my dreams and the staff, program, but the products at Point of Return have helped to get my life back on track. My name is Glenn and at the age of 13, I was started on Ritalin for the treatment of ADHD. Over the course of 13 years, my dependence on the medication increased and I was prescribed Adderall and Vyvanse. To combat the anxiety and nervousness caused by the stimulant I tried a range of SSRI medications including Celexa, Paxil, and Lexapro. About two years before I began the Point of Return program I was prescribed Cymbalta.
When I first began taking the stimulants, I hated the way they made me feel and tried to voice my concerns to my family and doctor, but was dismissed because I was 13 and my objections were perceived as defiance. My heart felt like it was going to beat out of my chest, I was unable to sleep at night, and I was constantly nervous for the first time in my life. As I mentioned above, in an attempt to combat the anxiety the doctor put me on antidepressants, which seemed to dampen all my emotions.
Over the years I became convinced that I needed the medication to function, as I’d been told. As the years went on the doctor had to prescribe higher doses of Adderall (or Vyvanse depending on what I was taking at the time) to get the same results, which also required higher doses of the antidepressant. It became evident to me when I was about 22 that this was not sustainable. The higher the doses, the less I felt like a human being and the emotions associated with being human. I don’t think I shed a single tear in the 13 years I was on psychiatric medications. Over the next three years I thought about tapering off the medication, but didn’t have the will.
Then when I was in school for Vascular Ultrasound in the spring of 2011 two things happened that gave me the impetus to begin searching for something to get off the medication. First, in one of my classes we performed EKG’s (or ECG), which measure the electrical activity of the heart. My heart rhythm came back abnormal which concerned my instructor. This was extremely atypical for an otherwise healthy physically-fit man in the mid-twenties. The most obvious explanation for this was the medication. The second event that occurred in the spring of 2011 was I failed one of my labs, because I was unable to keep my hands from shaking, due to the effects of the Vyvanse. I’d never been so devastated in my life and at that moment I knew I had to get off the medication. I’d originally been put on the medication to help me with school and to launch a successful career, but the medication destroyed this aspect of my life.
In November of 2011 I contacted Point of Return and spoke with Andrea, who assured me that I could do this. I took the products immediately and noticed a huge difference on my brain function. A few weeks later I went off the Vyvanse and began a 5 month taper off the anti-depressant. Concerned that the stimulants left permanent heart damage, I had another EKG and it came back normal after being off Vyvanse for a couple weeks. This could not have been done without the help of Andrea, Terry, and Alesandra. Connecting with Andrea and Terry every couple of weeks made this possible. Andrea gave me tips that increased the effectiveness of the products and Terry offered support and encouraged me not to rush the process.
I’ve been off the medication for a little over a year and I will be forever grateful for the support and knowledge the Point of Return staff gave me. This past year plus has been the first time in my adult life I’ve been off medication and I appreciate being able to experience the whole range of human emotions. I’ve been able to connect with my wife and children like never before, I’m able to sleep at night, and my verbal communication has improved immensely. If I can heal after 13 years of poisoning my brain and body, you can too. Contacting Point of Return was the best decision I made in my adult life.
Glenn B. (Minnesota) Vyvanse, Cymbalta
I could write you a timeline depicting the grueling details of my 4 year experience with Benzodiazepines, but truth is my story is probably a lot like yours. Just like you my anxiety crippled me. Just like you I played fool to a physician I put my trust into. And like you, I too was given a daily "therapeutic dosage" of Benzo's, SSRI's, and a cocktail of other behavioral meds to help with the side affects that came with the first pill. I too hit a tolerance wall every couple of months. My 23yr old body ached…I felt sick physically and mentally. I was a shell of the girl I once was. Like one of those hollow, half eaten, chocolate rabbits. My debilitated state led me to believe suicide was the only escape from my daily agony. And after 2 cold turkey quits, followed by many failed attempts to wean off Xanax with my physician, something had to change. With nothing left to lose, I did my research...
I'll never forget my first call to Point of Return. Withdrawing, I dialed guardedly and to my ears answered the most soothing, understanding voice…Alesandra Rain. Like many phone calls to come, she spent quite sometime with me on the phone that day, listening to my story and offering sound advice. Relieved wasn't the word, it brought tears to my eyes to finally speak to someone so knowledgeable who actually knew what I was going through and why. I remember her saying she could hear the "grit" in my voice, and coming from a place of experience she so knowingly said "it gets better". It wasn't until I read Deeds Of Trust that I fully understood how she knew. She had recognized the strength in my voice when I thought I had none.
Coming into POR I thought I was the exception. My panic attacks so frequent and debilitating, could I really taper successfully off the high mg doses of Xanax? Right away Alesandra and Andrea helped my doctor and I find a compounding pharmacy, and within 2 weeks of taking my nutrients, my body went from weak and needy to calmed and pacified. When I feel anxious, I know I can depend on Relax to calm my nerves. You really get what you put in. I cleaned up my old dirty habits for new and received great nutritional advice from Terry on how to implement whole foods into my diet. Andrea always encouraged me to keep at my dreams and her quirky spirit always had me laughing. To this day we remain great friends. The three of them plus the amazing nutrients I take, have created a life change in me that I couldn't imagine being without. The amazing lengths they have went to for me is something I could never repay them for. They were with me every step of the way shedding light on such a dark period of my life. Point of Return isn't just a program, it's a lifestyle. So you see, if you are going through a dark period just like I have you're one step closer to your success story.
Jessica B. (Virginia) - Xanax
At the age of 13, I went to the doctor due to some stressful situations in my life. I was there for no longer then ten minutes when the doctor gave me free samples of Celexa, after taking those free samples I felt I could not live without them. I was told at this young age of 13 that I would need antidepressants for the rest of my life. I bought into the lie that I would need them because my doctor said so, and who was I to question my doctor, after all I was taught to respect people in authority so I thought the doctor knows best.
After several visits to the doctor I was diagnosed as bipolar, which I never liked or understood. The doctors tried several different antidepressants to treat depression but it seemed to get worse such as Paxil, Zoloft, Amitriptyline, Seroquel, Cipralex, Doxepin, and several others, to many to mention. With these different medications I had so many different side effects that seemed to make the depression worse. I had so many symptoms like insomnia, loss of appetite, and mood swings I felt like I was crawling out of my skin, being over sensitive, and suicidal thoughts.
I had a lack of self-esteem, I felt hopeless, and that I was a pain to everybody and had no purpose. I was taken to the hospital emergency ward and after evaluating me I was put into the psychiatric ward at the hospital. It was then I saw a psychiatrist who diagnosed me to have bipolar depression so they kept me in for two weeks trying to find a medication to treat the depression. At the time I was on Paxil and was taken off of it cold turkey with no tapering and put me on Seroquel right away, I then had a seizure as a result. In 2009 I was prescribed sleeping pills because I had difficulty sleeping when I first started sleeping pills they helped for a short time then a few months later my sleep got worse.
In January 2012 I went off of sleeping pills cold turkey, which I don’t recommend anyone doing. It was very difficult, the withdrawal symptoms were very strong but I was desperate and I wanted to make positive changes in my life. In May 2012 the craving for sleeping pills were so strong that I did search on my computer and typed in craving for sleeping pills and the Point of Return website showed up. I could not believe it, I read all the testimonies and I showed my father and got very excited.
The next day I called Point of Return (POR) and left a message and within ten minutes Alessandra called me back, I talked for about an hour and I made the decision that I wanted to join the program. I knew that it was God who guided me to Point of Return and I am so grateful for them. I ordered my product and read all the information about the program. In August 2012 I started to taper off of Prozac and finished on October 8, 2012, then on October 23, 2012 I started to taper off of Lamictal and I finished January 1, 2013. I am thankful to God for His daily strength and help.
I am 24 years old and so thankful that I found POR at this young age. I have my whole life ahead of me and now I can share with others my journey and give them the same hope that I have found. It is wonderful l to wake up every day and not depend on medications to control my day. It is nice to wake up every day without the horrible side effects that I had while on medication. Since I finished tapering I now find that food tastes better. I am able to enjoy God’s creation and the beauty around me. My friends and family have noticed such a change in me. They say that I have such life in me now and I am able to deal with stress and life without being numbed by medication. I love to dog sit for others and take their dogs for walks and enjoy nature. I am finding my sleep is improving each day and I know every day will get better. I have found that if you work the POR program that it will work for you. The results are there if you do your part and work the program.
I am also grateful to the Point of Return family on the forum who I was able to share my heart and what I was going through. They never condemned me but always had words of encouragement and ensured me that I would be able to do this and that there was a light at the end of the tunnel. I thank God for Andrea, Terry, and Alessandra who always listened to me encouraged me and gave me great advice, without them it would have been much harder. I love and appreciate each one of them, thank you for being there. I strongly recommend Point of Return to others.
Rachel M. (Canada) Prozac, Lamical
My name is Brenda, and back in 2006 I started taking what I thought was an all-natural sleep aide only to find out later it contained drug considered illegal in Canada called Estazolam; this is where my night mare and version of hell started! This company, was very negligent and asked their customers to stop taking their product called Sleepees immediately. Stopping the product so soon is the worst thing you could do. Once I had stopped taking the drug I went into complete withdrawal!
I had never been so sick in my life and wanted to die! No one could help me from out of this private hell. I went from doctor to doctor, prescribing me with their remedy, more prescription drugs. Finally, I did my own digging on the Internet and tried programs to help me come off the Benzodiazepines; however, they did not work. It seemed like there was no end to this until one day I the found Alesandra Rain with Point of Return. This was my only saving grace as Alesandra patiently walked me through one of the toughest times of my life. I took the products suggested, faithfully, and started to see the light at the end of the darkest tunnel I have ever known. It took two years of my life, and I know I never would have made it through without this program- as suicide seemed like a strong option at the time to escape the pain of coming off this horrible drug!
My family and I will always be grateful to you and your wonderful staff Alesandra (Special Lady) as long as I live. I will never forget all your true, heart-felt kindness, patience, and caring spirit. You, Alesandra, and Point of Return are a Godsend!
Thank you so much,
Brenda C. (Canada) Estazolam, Zopliclone
When You don’t have to do LIFE alone. Point of Return (POR) and all those souls involved in experiencing life without drugs to dull the pain are available, ready and able to be of incredible support.
I took my last dose of Klonopin on January 29, 2012. It took me 6 months of tapering. I began the taper, September 11, 2011, with the incredible support of Andrea, Dr. Armstrong and the rest of the crew at POR. Without all of you and the products available through this program I have no doubt that I would have failed in my effort to be drug free. I had been on Klonopin for 6 - 1/2 years and according to my psychiatrist could stay on it “the rest of my life”. The problem for me was it was not much of a life. I was pretty numb and unable to think very clearly. I still had anxiety and thank God had never upped my dose beyond 1 - 1/2 mg daily. Just the small amount I was taking rendered me incapable of stopping on my own.
It was with the information I got from a new friend in my life that I called Dr. Armstrong and Point of Return. A new world of possibilities opened up for me. I was no longer alone in my quest to live without the benzo nightmare. What gifts you have all been in my life. Andrea, Terry, Alesandra, Dr. Armstrong and all those who supported me in changing my life. I am so very grateful when I wake every morning and don’t have to lay out pills to get through the day.
Thank you all for being a part of my life and my journey. I know that as I continue to grow and change, without the drug, I will always have your love and support and you are only an email or phone call away. I love you all and know that you are there for me. I stopped waiting to write the “perfect” testimonial. No wonder it took me a year and two months to write and send this huge thanks to you all.
Susan L. (Texas) Klonopin
When I had a bilateral total knee replacement at age 67 in April 2012, I didn’t want to take oral painkillers, so I got a 25mg Fentanyl patch and supplemented that with some Tylenol and Hydrocodone. After about 7 weeks a PT said to me that Fentanyl becomes physiologically addicting at about 6 weeks. I certainly hadn’t been told that by anyone prescribing it for me. And I’d never before distinguished between psychological and physiological addiction. ( I wasn’t concerned about addiction because I knew that I wasn’t psychologically addicted.) At around the same time, I told the surgeon that I was still having a lot of pain, so he increased my Fentanyl dose to 50mg. This made me sick. So I went back to 25mg but by then I was starting to have other symptoms—feeling as if my muscles were closing in on me, making me want to jump out of my skin. Also tachycardia, chills, sweats, itchiness and feeling just kind of crazy.
I’d already learned about POR from a friend and started thinking it might help me deal with this. So after helpful conversations with Andrea and Alessandra, I started the program. My doctor didn’t want to write the script for tapering, so I got off Fentanyl her way—by going from 25 to 12 mg patch and then leaving it on for progressively longer periods, all the while taking Tramadol to help step down. She said I should feel awful for a week or two and then I’d be OK.
But I wasn’t OK in 2 weeks or 3 weeks or 4 weeks. I was afraid of the Support because of something someone said to me and because at first I thought I got worse after taking it. Finally I started the regular dosage. I got to the therapeutic level sometime in September and that is when I started getting relief from the awful symptoms. So then I realized that the Support was really the thing that had gotten me out of my withdrawal misery. ( In my desperation, one of the things I did was to talk to someone who manages the drug withdrawals at the local prison. He told me that when prisoners come in who are withdrawing from Fentanyl they don’t treat them because they aren’t at risk of dying from the withdrawal. This was actually somewhat comforting.)
In the meantime, it was so difficult to sleep with the jumpy aches that I started (or re-started) taking Ambien. It did help me through the worst of it, but once I was through that I thought that the best way to get off the Ambien would be to taper off, so I stayed on the program for the Ambien taper. By then it was clear to me how much I’d benefitted already and that there was no one else that I was getting care from had any idea how to help me with what I was suffering from. Also I had developed confidence in the wisdom of making very gradual changes. That’s one of the things that I’ve learned and will continue to apply when making other changes—nutritional or otherwise. The body adapts incrementally.
I finished my Ambien taper on Feb. 28.
I knew going in that knee replacement would be hard, but no doctor and no one who’d been through it gave me any idea how hard. I think people forget. I know I’ve forgotten to some extent what it was like when I was suffering so much. But I know that Andrea was always there for support and she steered me toward understanding or doing the right thing on many occasions. It’s stunning to realize how misguided, misunderstood and harmful the use of meds is in our culture. It is fantastic that this organization exists to help people affordably get meds out of their lives.
I appreciate the research that POR has put into the issue of drug withdrawal. The understanding of how glutathione works with our receptors, and all the other understandings they have gained are filling a hugely needed gap in the area of medicine and health.
I am really really happy to be free of meds and very grateful to everyone at Point of Return for what they have done for me and so many others.
Cynthia, N. (New York) - Ambien
How ironic, as a New York State firefighter/first responder, the first response my doctor offered to my question of anxiety, was "take this pill". A pill that I now know made me feel more anxious and less ready to respond to emergencies! Wow, so I did. So I willingly added myself to the ranks of the uninformed, i.e., majority of the "medical establishment" and All of us who desperately seek relief from despair without the true knowledge of the effects of these drugs! That was 2011. One year and 6 months later, a friend shared Point of Return (POR) with me, a Great friend indeed. Now 8 months later, I AM FREE to Soar again, climb to New heights unknown, And All made possible by Alesandra, Andrea, Terry, Dr. Code, and the entire staff and family of Point of Return, to whom I am forever grateful.
I am honored to be a part of my "new extended family" at POR, and encourage anyone who comes across this path, to "tuck & roll" away from a drug dependent life, to an existence of "freedom", health and optimism. Like those before me, I found the journey wasn't easy; highs and lows, starts and stops, with some unexpected surprises. It seemed like a long dark tunnel with no light, yet Alesandra & Co. were Always"shinning" there for me. This Journey was what it needed to be for me to be
Thank You All, with All my Heart and Soul,
In His Abundance...Love, Light and Harmony!
Eagle (New York) - Lorazepam
I remember the day, in a year of days spent in the depth of despair, in what had become a tail-spin spiral fueled by misprescribed psychotropic drugs, that I reached for the phone. I had finally reached a place in my search to survive this conundrum no one seemed able to help me with but only further - where I knew how to ask the universe (and Google) for help. I knew what to type in that leap of faith moment but I didn't know yet quite how generously and remarkably the answer would come. I typed "How do you get off Benzodiazepines" and in an acronym the answer came. POR (Point of Return). Like so many other dear souls, I had innocently stumbled into these diabolical drugs - Ambien, Seroquel, Clonazepam and their dangerous withdrawal symptoms.
The conspiring ignorance of the doctors that prescribe them, the drug companies that profit from pushing them and the Mental Health System that props it all up, leaves us not only without answers but with the wrong answers, with dangerous misinformation about these supposed cures that only deepen our plight.
Even before I heard the wise and powerfully reassuring voice of PORs (Point of Return) founder, Alesandra Rain, the web site was like an oasis in the dessert. I had information. I had confirmation that I wasn't crazy. And I had a path. A path not without it's hardships but a path. A path is hope and from that day on I knew there was hope.
You who are reading this know what that is worth. And indeed it proved to be THE path. Because of POR my wandering in the wilderness became a journey back to health. It was a slow and steady taper with wise and loving expert coaching, with brilliantly devised supplements that restore what the drugs rob and with assurance throughout that I too would be fine.
And indeed, I have been drug free, sleeping beautifully, happy and grateful for two months and at peace in the realization that I have my life back. I attribute this to Point Of Return and the truly devoted people there.
Catherine K. (Minnesota) - Klonopin
I would like to send you a big "Thank You!" note for all you've done for me. I received my certificate in the mail (a week ago). What a pleasant surprise! I would not have received the same level of care, love, consistent support, valuable knowledge and reassurance from any medical professional here in Canada.
I am 5 weeks off all the medications today. I am making progress week by week. Last night for the first time I slept through the night - a good 8 hours sleep. Yesterday I went to my doctor's office for a follow-up appointment, even she had to admit (finally) that I was given medications that I never should have needed which caused all the so-called psychiatric disorders. Some of my friends who used to doubt me came to conclusion on their own as well that I was misdiagnosed and in effect poisoned by my previous doctor. Although I still have quite a bit of healing (both physically psychologically) to accomplish, I am very hopeful that total restoration will materialize!
No amount of words can express my appreciation and gratitude towards all you've done for me and my family.
Thank you so much!
Love and hugs,
I just finished the Point of Return program and want to let you know how I'm doing. I went on vacation and thought I would get off Temazepam. The VA had me on it for over 4 years. I did 11 days cold turkey and it was the vacation from hell. We found Point of Return (POR) on the web and I called and talked to Alesandra. I ordered the materials and began the program. There's no way I could have gotten off this drug on my own. It was destroying my life and my health. 2 weeks ago I finished the program. Just as advertised comfortably in my own home I did it. All I can say is "Thank You!" I just wish the VA Health Care System would use your program. I went in there in the middle of full blown withdrawl and they didn't know what to do with me. I'm so glad we found you on the internet. I've presented it to them but they aren't known for doing what works. You can use any or all of this statement any way you want. I just want to say "Thank You" again, you've been a Godsend.
Danny R. (Pennsylvania) - Temazepam
You are my angel.
I started taking Effexor a couple of years after my second child was born. I had terrible panic attacks which were really debilitating. I think it was because of a combination of my father dying suddenly, stress and poor nutrition. Only later after quite a bit of research I realized that it must have been it. I went to a general doctor who gave me the quick fix. Take Xanax till your Effexor starts kicking in a couple of weeks. Having always been scared of any types of drugs I only took one or two Xanax. I rode the panic attacks till the Effexor kicked in. At first I felt good. I even stopped smoking cigarettes. Then the weight started piling in pretty fast. I never had a weight issue in my life. No matter how much exercise I would do I still put on weight and craved sugar all the time. Slowly I started having all sorts of problems. Constipation, brain zaps, tiredness, and a ton of other problems I chose to remove from my mind.
Over the 6 years I often tried to quit, once it even took me a year to taper off of it but always went back to it as I had terrible withdrawal symptoms. Searched the Internet constantly to see if anybody got off of this drug successfully. One day I stumbled upon PointofReturn.org, (POR). I read up on it thoroughly but was very skeptical so I didn't do anything for a year. This year, June 2012 I had had enough. I wrote them and within a few hours I got a reply from Alesandra. I had a thousand questions. She replied within a few hours. After a few days or weeks of correspondence I decided to order the program.
Her patience with me won me over. Within a few days I started feeling like I was suddenly waking up, had energy, I was alert. Amazing. But I was still skeptical. I learned that the best tapering process was definitely through a compounding pharmacy who made the drug in liquid form. Easy!!
I have been now off the drug for almost a month. I feel great. Tons of energy, overall good mood, alert. I do get weepy and impatient at times but I feel alive after having spent 6 years masking all sorts of feelings.
I thank you Alesandra and the group of people at POR who made it possible for me to go though this program so successfully!!
Chiara R. (California) - Effexor, Xanax
The program works!!! Sign up today. Don't waste another moment trying to deal with it by yourself!
What can one say about being pulled from the depths of despair and finding someone who truly cared about you and your problems, and was willing to make a commitment of time and effort to assist you with your journey back to a more normal life? I can't say thank you enough to all the staff at Point of Return (POR), and Alesandra in particular.
My story is very similar to many of the people I have read about in the testimonials. I have a problem with insomnia, and sought medication to alleviate my sleeping issues. I used Estazolam (Prosom) long enough to develop a physiological dependence on it. I had many irritating side effects from using the medication. I finally decided that I wanted to try getting free from the drug. I tried cold turkey, and got to my 4th night of no sleep and decided that the withdrawal side effects were too hard to deal with, so I started taking the drug once more. I tried a couple more times, with the same results.
The drug was now less effective at bringing sleep, but I could not stop taking it as the withdrawal symptoms became unbearable. I sought out my doctor for advice, and he did not understand why I could not simply stop taking the Estazolam. He prescribed Trazadone for me to calm my nerves. I tried it for a couple nights, and while I was less anxious, I was actually sleeping less than before. Just what I needed, yet another drug in my system. I stopped taking the Trazadone. This downward spiral had to come to an end. I was at my wits end trying to figure a way out of this mess.
I had searched for information on the Internet, for anything that would assist me in this process. I found plenty of information, but nothing that would actually help me on my journey. I was considering ending this ordeal, by taking my own life, but I did not want to burden my wife, children, and family with that terrible end. I prayed many times, long and hard, for some end to this affliction. When I was at my lowest point, I prayed for guidance, and turned back to the Internet one last time.
I Googled "benzodiazapine addiction assistance", and BAM!! I was led to the Point of Return website. I started reading, and was intrigued by the treatment approach. I showed it to my wife, and she was skeptical at first glance, but was willing to let me investigate it further. I called the number, and I was put in touch with Alesandra. I had a good conversation with her about my problem and she was certain that the program would be able to help me. I did not commit right away, and later that evening I filled out the online questionnaire requesting more info. The next day when I got home from work, my wife was having a great conversation with someone, and it turned out to be Alesandra, calling to touch base with me. Alesandra and I talked for almost 30 minutes, and I was convinced that this was going to be my salvation, my wife agreed that I should pursue this, as it offered the best chance of my success in getting free from the Estazolam.
I joined the program, and would love to tell you it was easy, but that would not be the truth. My sleep was the biggest issue, it took a lot of trial and error to come up with the winning combination that allowed me to get enough rest to keep going. The taper process went very smoothly, I had no withdrawal symptoms throughout my taper. Alesandra was there all through my program, to offer advice over the phone or by email. She kept me encouraged while I was making my progress, and kept me motivated during the many tough spells I was running into. I made it through to the end of the program, and I am happy to say that it has been over 6 months since I finished my taper.
The program works!!!
I thank GOD for leading me to the Point of Return website. My heart felt thank you goes out to Alesandra, Andrea, Terry, and the rest of the folks at Point of Return, for giving my life back to me! I am still dealing with some sleep issues, but I am in a far better place now than I was a year ago when I started the program...
May GOD's peace be with you all!
David E., (Iowa) - Estazolam (Prosom)
Just wanted to let you all know that I returned to work yesterday after not working for 10 weeks. I have been almost completely symptom free for the past two weeks. I doubt I will ever know to what extent my illness was the result of Cipro or the benzos prescribed to treat my Cipro reaction. What I am confident of though is that my healing began the day I called POR and was given much needed validation that my symptoms were definitely the result of the medications I took. You all gave me more information and direction in the communication we had over those first two days than I had received from 6 different doctors, 2 therapists, a naturopath, and a nurse practitioner of integrative medicine over the previous 6 weeks. During that time I made no significant improvements, but since starting with Point of Return (POR) I have only gotten better and better. I tell everyone I discuss my illness with two things: Cipro is extremely dangerous and POR is an extraordinary program for healing. I've had 3 office visits since starting your program and I've told each doctor about your program. My regular doctor happily took your physician's guide for future reference, the psychiatrist barely glanced at it, and the nurse practitioner of integrative medicine was very excited to learn more about the supplements.
Anyway, all this is to say thank you so very, very much! I know I am not your typical client, but I feel like I am just as fortunate to have found POR as any of the others you've helped.
In gratitude and health,
I could write a long story about my journey and how POR saved my life, but you can read them all here. I’ll just say that I became dependent in 8 days. It can happen just like that and no one warns you of the danger. Western medicine failed me and I was left to fend for myself, or so I thought. Then I found Point of Return (POR) and I had reason to hope I could get my life back again. There are no miracles here, but what is here is a solid program that will lead you on the path to freedom from drugs and renewed health! I am in the early stages of healing at just under 3 months off of Ativan/Klonopin but I can tell you that my body is healing in ways I don’t even understand. There is more healing left for me to do, but I know in time my life will be not only restored but even better than before. I was skeptical in the beginning, but I can tell you every person at POR is a kind, compassionate guardian angel that will guide you and keep you safe and reassured during the process of withdrawal. The program works and you can take that to the bank! If you need to free yourself from the chains of drug dependence please do not hesitate as every day is precious. Take your life back. I did and I am forever grateful. May you healing start today. Be Blessed!
Bobby S., (Florida) Ativan/Klonpin
I cannot say enough about this program.
I was prescribed Paxil 14 years ago for postpartum depression. Like most people, I figured I could get off it when I was ready. I also bought into the lie that I may need it for life because depression runs in my family. After starting anti-depressants, I developed sleep issues for the first time in my life. I tried several different sleeping pills and finally settled on Trazodone. Through the years, I learned to rely on pills to fix every emotional problem I encountered. I cannot even remember what all I have taken over the years.
About five years ago, I realized I was sleeping my life away. I know this might sound strange to some, but I felt like God was telling me to “STOP”, it’s time to let go and get your life back. By this point, I was on a minimal dose: 5 mg Prozac and 50 mg Trazodone so I thought it would be easy if I followed the doctor’s directions. It was a disaster…I had my first ever full-fledged panic attack and could not sleep for a week straight. I ended up in urgent care and back on Prozac, Trazodone and Zanax.
After about a year I decided to get professional counseling and my counselor recommended a Naturopath physician. So my second time around I had some nutritional support with amino acids that were supposed to help. I was able to get off everything; however, I was so hyped-up all the time and had trouble sleeping. My behavior started to get erratic and I questioned if I was bipolar. I was afraid of what I might do so I got back on the meds. It was a sad day after being off for 7 months…
I spent the last 1 ½ years taking meds I did not want to take…feeling as if I lost my testimony. I really felt God would in some capacity use me to help others get free of antidepressants and here I was back on them. I wanted to give up but there was just a little spark left in me to want to fight for my life.
It was Mother’s day this year, I was at Church with my husband (both of my boys at home sleeping) I was so sad. I had so much guilt…If I were there for my boys they might see what I see in the Lord. My faith must really suck if I have to take these stupid pills! I asked my husband to pray for me. He prayed for wisdom and healing. I woke up in the middle of the night thinking I can’t do this on my own. I need to find a new naturopath with new ideas or I can look online. I was very skeptical of anything online…but desperate. I found POR read about them and realized this is just like going to a naturopath doctor only it is geared toward helping people get free of psychiatric meds. From my past experiences, this seemed legit. After speaking with Alesandra, I had an understanding as to why my past attempts were not successful.
I thought wow, so you mean I am not crazy!
For me this program was an obsession…I followed it closely. It worked a miracle in my life! This program is the best out there it covers everything.
I am FREE and I got my TESTIMONY back!
Thank you POR…from the bottom of my heart you helped me achieve my dream!
Kelly M., (Montana) – Prozac, Trazodone
The 28th of April will forever be one of the most significant days of my life, and I write this testimonial on the anniversary of the day God led me to Point of Return (POR). What was meant for evil, God has turned to good because one amazing woman decided to dedicate her life to save the lives of those (mine included) who’d all but lost theirs to the destructive grip of prescription drugs.
My torment of despair weakened in the presence of the hope that came from pouring over the testimonials on the POR website. And now, with a joy I thought would be denied me for the rest of my life, I willingly share mine.
I will never forget the day that light shone on the darkness that had descended over me like a permanent shroud. I wasted no time in contacting Alesandra; who quickly became my angel-my mentor-and my friend. My first email, simply entitled, “HELP!” was answered within hours and thus began my journey back to , normality, health, joy, laughter, and fulfilment.
23 years ago I was doing night shift in a nursing home. I couldn’t sleep. My blood pressure hit the roof and despite my abhorrence of drugs, I resorted to sleeping pills after all the natural remedies proved ineffective. I needed to work, and therefore I needed to sleep but the pills only gave me an average of 4 hours sleep per day. My stress levels doubled, tripled and quadrupled as financial, health, and relationship challenges got on top of me. Antidepressants were prescribed and it was a downhill slide from there.
I lost count of the many times I tried to come off the drugs. I suffered a few cold turkey withdrawals; the most traumatic one was a period of 21 days without sleep. I didn’t understand about rebound insomnia and depression then. I didn’t know that our bodies reach tolerance levels soon after ingesting the poison of prescription drugs and I had no idea that it would be virtually impossible to be drug free until I found the answer in the form of a safe, slow rehabilitation program that I could do from home. Following the guidance of the wonderful staff at Por I can now look back on this past year in awe and give eternal thanks to God for this miracle.
I am now writing my story in the hope of helping others who, like me had nowhere else to turn. It may only be one small ripple in a gigantic pond, but I vowed that if I regained my freedom (which I now have) I would tell anyone who would listen. This is my prayer. That one more pebble, reinforced by the weighty words of truth and thrown into a drugged sea of despair will cause a tsunami of ripples.
Avanza (Remeron) and Lunesta (Imovane) systematically stripped me of my personality, energy, passion, clarity, health and drive and exchanged them for agoraphobia, chronic fatigue, anxiety, memory loss, brain fog, hypertension and hopelessness. This does not equate to a fair exchange in my book. Our bodies are wonderfully and fearfully made but we cause every system to shut down by resorting to the myriad of quick fixes glamorously advertised and successfully marketed around the world today.
By utilising the experienced, capable, and highly informed assistance available through Point of Return I have enabled my body, mind and spirit to recuperate. POR’s effective nutritional products alongside their unsurpassed support have given me a second chance.
Alesandra, Andrea, Terry, Wendy and Rachel, you not only changed my life you gave it back to me. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Trudee H. (Australia) - Avanza (Mirtazapine), Stilnox (Ambien), Imovane (Zopliclone)
Come back from despair (A message from Japan)
Then I thought that I cannot help committing suicide… I had regretted that I took sleeping pill. The reason was simply insomnia by toothache. But why could I imagine that the thing brought me great suffering? I had suffered from terrible side effects of medicines and withdrawal symptoms of ones. I quickly had tolerance. Therefore, the insomnia worsened. It needed many kinds of medicines and a large quantity of ones to sleep gradually. The medicines were not only benzodiazepines but also barbiturates. Of course, I could not work any longer. Everyday I had lain down on the bed and had been tormented. I live in Japan. Neither doctors nor administrations of health helped me. I was searching for the treatment that could heal me, from Hokkaido to Okinawa. After all, it was all over Japan. But I could not find out any solution. No one helped me
One day I unexpectedly found out a website to help getting off the sleeping pills in U.S.A. That was Point of Return (POR). I did not have any choices more. I decided to bet their treatment. I had good first impression for the staffs. I felt them to be hearty. Their help was marvelous. They do what is not thinkable in Japan. My condition turned better after 1month and a half since I had started POR program. It was really miracle. I also made a lot of efforts at concentrating the healing. Eventually, I got off all the medicines. I recovered. I cannot believe it even now. Now I can’t believe I had thought that I commit suicide. But I was saved at close to the edge.
POR treatment stands to reason. We all have natural healing power. Our body and brain need to raise natural power of immune system to recover. POR treatment raises the natural power without nuisance.
I could start 2nd life. I do not know how to express my thanks… Doumo Arigatou, Konokoto ha syougai wasremasen. (I am deeply grateful. And I never forget it for the rest of my life.)
Love, Donko (Japan) - Bromazepam, Lorazepam
As I sit and reflect on the last year and a half, what a journey it has been! It is one I definitely do not ever want to repeat!! In August, 2010, I had a 5 hr plane trip to visit my daughter. Many years ago, I had a major panic attack flying from the East coast to the West coast. I have avoided flying since then, but I can't avoid it now because my daughter is a 28 hr car trip away! I asked my doctor for Ativan and I was given a prescription for 30 tabs, first mistake. After the trip, I naively began taking Ativan when I felt stressed or I didn't fall asleep fast enough. After I finished the bottle, I decided I did not want to take them anymore and quit cold turkey. I descended into a very horrible dark time of extreme anxiety, panic and night after night of laying awake all night in a panic. My blood pressure was very high and my heart beat wildly all the time. Neither my doctor nor I recognized the symptoms I was having were from withdrawing from Ativan cold turkey!
Over the next month, I tried one sleeping pill after another, Klonipin and Celexa. Thank the Lord, I did not like the way Klonipin or Celexa made me feel and stopped after a few days. Finally, still not having a clue that I was in withdrawal, I went back to my doctor and asked him to let me have Ativan again, since it was the one thing that helped me sleep! That was November and from then until February 2011, I think I was continuously in tolerance withdrawal and had to keep upping the dose and adding doses during the day to help with the insomnia and anxiety. I still was clueless as to what was happening and was sure I had some kind of horrible disorder.
In February 2011, I started to realize I wanted to come off Ativan and started trying to drop a daytime dose. The anxiety I experienced was so horrible that I could not begin to do without. My husband and I started looking up Ativan addiction and we were afraid I was going to have to go to a treatment center to get off of it. I found POR and I was afraid to believe it was really true. I kept going back to the site wondering if it was a scam or not. I read the testimonials where people said that Alesandra, Andrea and Terry were always there for them and would pick up the phone whenever they called and I thought, Yea, right, I don't believe that.
Finally, in desperation I gave Point of Return (POR) a call and talked with Alesandra. After about 4 phone conversations, I decided it was for me. I started the program and never looked back! Now I am the one saying every time I called they were there for me and it is so true! They understood like no one else and the support and encouragement that I could make it through to the end of the taper and healing was phenomenal. I would not even want to think about where I would be if I had not been led to POR!! I am 6 months Ativan free and it is awesome!! Thank you Alesandra, Andrea and Terry for being the lighthouse in a horribly dark and stormy season and guiding me into freedom!!!! I am forever grateful!!
I am 6 months Ativan free and it is awesome!! Thank you Alesandra, Andrea and Terry for being the lighthouse in a horribly dark and stormy season and guiding me into freedom!!!! I am forever grateful!!
Robyn S. (North Carolina) - Ativan
After giving birth to my beautiful daughter at the age of 41, I experienced extreme anxiety which led to many sleepless nights. Having been trained in nutritional therapy I tried every natural remedy possible before asking my M.D. for help. By this time I'd been having post partum depression issues for a few months and taking sleeping pills and anti-anxiety medications seemed like the last resort. I reluctantly went down that path thinking that I needed them for a short time to pull myself out of a crisis. I was assured it would only be short term. I was prescribed Zopiclone then temazepam and ativan when it did not help. I had no idea what would happen next.
Within the few months of trying to unsuccessfully withdraw from the meds myself, I'd worked my way up to a stronger prescription to get a decent night's sleep. Days were plagued with an anxiety I'd never experienced before and nights were terrifying as I'd wake up with my heart beating uncontrollably. Some days I was shaking so badly I could barely walk. Still I persisted in trying to withdraw myself. When I'd visit my doctor describing my symptoms, he prescribed additional drugs like Lyrica, Gabapentin and Seroquel--which did not help. As much as I hated to take any more drugs, I relented when he said I should be on the anti-depressant Prisiq.
Every ounce of my being wanted to be off these drugs as soon as possible so I could get back the health I'd so proudly built over the years but it seemed I was losing the battle. I was scared, no, terrified of where my life was heading. I have to remind myself that during this battle I was also expected to give 110% of myself to my growing daughter.--thank God I have a loving and supportive husband and family. My days were long and nights were longer. I know I needed to get help.
Enter Point of Return. From the moment I discovered your life-saving program, I felt understood and really cared for. Andrea's compassion was unparalleled as she listened and made adjustments to my program. When I hit a bump, she was there to walk me through it. I remember thinking as I went through my day, "what would Andrea say" then I'd be comforted and empowered. After 10 months of faithfully following the program, I am now free of all the medication. When I began the progam I thought that I could never go that slowly in withdrawing but I was wrong. I used that time to rebuild my health--body and mind. Most days I would meditate at least once--I became reaquainted with peace. Hope returned, I felt empowered to go the distance. And here I am, at the other side. I've returned to my life but it's better than it was before because I have such gratitude and appreciation for all that I have. Many thanks to Andrea, specifically, and the team, in general.
You walked with me through the darkest cave of my life.
Suzy L. (Nanaimo, BC) - Pristiq, Temazepam
Never thought prescription drugs could do more harm than good. Never thought doctors knew and understood so little. Never thought it could come to this. Never thought it could happen to me. We are all human.
We all make mistakes. Nobody is perfect. Not even doctors. Not even the pharmaceutical companies that advise them.
If you are reading this, chances are you or a loved one is either in a terrible amount of mental anguish or a very poor state of physical health, maybe both.
I don’t know what to say to convince you that you have found an organization and a group of people that truly care for your wellbeing, and for you.
Point of Return (POR) sells supplements, true. If you are starting to see the evil behind pharmaceuticals and the harm they have caused you, I don’t blame you for being skeptical. However, in order for you to feel the best you ever have in your whole life (at least since the miracle of childhood) then you are going to have to get over your fear and skepticism. You are going to have to take control of your state of being and start investing in your future, repairing the harm that poor nutrition, lifestyle, and pharmaceuticals have done to your body and mind.
The testimonials on this site are from real people. I am a real person. Yes, I fell into the pharmaceutical trap. It can happen to anyone and it is extremely difficult to get out of. The fall entails more pain than I care to describe, of which, anyone who hasn’t felt it doesn’t understand. I encourage you to read the harrowing stories in the testimonials of the others. They are successes. I am a success. You can be too.
I am not going to tell my story. I am going to tell you about POR and why you need them and can trust that they are the best resource to help you out of your trap.
POR is a partnership of survivors, not some hollow corporate entity. They have been through what you might be suffering. The program they recommend is what worked for them and the people they serve. They live to help others, they live to help us, and they helped me tremendously. My life and great state of health is purely due to them and my following their gentle guidance.
Why the supplements? If your body is lacking something that the pharmaceuticals covered up, you will not heal when the pharmaceuticals are taken away. You will stop damaging yourself, but you will not heal from your original affliction.
POR does not sell every vitamin under the sun. POR is not a vitamin shop trying to make a living off of health fads. POR is focused on two things: healing and balance.
If you are not suffering from prescription drug withdrawals, you would still benefit from the supplements. I think you would see a difference within a month, if not sooner; however, the amazing transformation I went through took a few months to fully realize. At nine months, I am 15 pounds lighter, it keeps getting better, and I will be adding exercise now that my system is clean. I know it will have to stop and stabilize eventually, and I am just so thankful to feel this good.
If you are suffering from prescription drug withdrawals, nasty side effects, or would like to try living pharma free, POR is your salvation. You need the supplements (otherwise POR would not sell them). You need the POR program. I strongly recommend the starter kit. It has an autobiography by one of the founders, an essential manual to help you assess your symptoms and diet, a journal to log your progress, and your first month’s supplements. You also get access to the genius and experience of the POR family and access to the POR private discussion board with fighters like you kicking off the ball and chains of prescription drugs. The forum is not like a public discussion board full of horror stories. True, the pain can be horrific. It is a sharing of experience, support, and hope by people who want to heal, are healing, and have healed. The wealth of knowledge I gained on how to live healthy is unparalleled. Getting a supportive ear I needed and the hope I lacked was a lifesaver. The forum is a vital component to a successful withdrawal and a lifelong transformation.
Lastly, a brief discussion about costs. I am a
cheap thrifty accountant. It only cost me as little as $5 a month to destroy my state of health, then more and more co-pays, all with the health industry’s blessing, and I do say “industry”. I lost over $15,000 in failed detox attempts and several days of work. The supplements will cost $200 to $300 a month, and the process takes 10 weeks minimum, and up to a year or more depending on what you are taking or recovering from. Some of you are already paying more in co-pays, and have lost even more than me. Your life is worth $300 a month in supplements. You will be forever changed. You might even want to spend more on healthier foods, and healthier habits, once you notice how good you look and feel.
Please don’t let the cost of the supplements be a hurdle to your success and your future. Please don’t let fear prevent you from trying POR and at least getting the starter kit. You deserve it.
To our health,
Donald K., (California) - Klonopin
I want to tell people my story because I am so ordinary. I am not a recording artist or Hollywood star. I am a 60 year old grandmother and due to circumstances that seemed large at the time I ended up on Ativan almost one year ago (.5mg. 2-3 times a day as needed).
I was experiencing hyperthyroidism and since I am usually hypothyroid this was quite different than I was used to feeling. I had lost my father the previous spring and had to put my mom in an Alzheimer's facility at that time. I had lost my sweet wonderful mini schnauzer in October and 2 weeks later I woke up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom and on my way back to bed I had what they said was an attack of Supraventricular tachycardia (SVT). It was the most frightened I have ever been and as I fell on the bed I said a few prayers and waited to die. After 10 minutes of waiting to die I figured if I was still alive, I needed help and since I was alone, I called an ambulance and long story short the ER doc said I was very hyperthyroid. I had been over-medicated for hypothyroidism. That was the beginning of my nightmare. No matter what the docs did I was still symptomatic even when the blood results said I should be fine.
I was having a racing heart all night and high blood pressure and I was told not to due anything that would raise my heart rate so I sat around and got more and more fearful. My Doc sent me to a cardiologist and I wore a monitor for weeks. The doc put me on a beta-blocker and that helped the heart but I was still shaky and nervous from the T3 levels which also irritate the heart.
My doc saw that I was loosing weight and having all sorts of issues and said that I needed to go on Ativan and Zoloft or I would "make myself sick". I took 1-2 Zoloft and felt like a zombie and took them back to her but I did take the occasional Ativan. When I returned to see my doctor she told me to take the Ativan 2-3 times a day whether I needed it or not. I did and within a few weeks felt like I didn't want to get hooked, so I cut one of the pills in half and went to bed and when I got up the next day I did the same thing and during the day I told my husband I felt like I was going to die but I didn't know what was wrong.
I thought about it and the next day I went on the computer to see if it could have been from cutting the pill in half and I felt like I had fallen down the rabbit hole. The stuff that I saw on the internet scared me to death and I didn't know what to do. I saw the website for POINT OF RETURN (POR), but I thought I would see what my doc said since she prescribed it, I figured she knew how to get me off. Well, that was another learning experience. She wanted me to take more and said she didn't know how to get me off and I would have to take it forever. I said, you don't understand, my body already wants more because it isn't helping any more. I want off this stuff. She told me to go to a psychiatrist. We have a friend who is a shrink and he laughed and said I was not even on a therapeutic dose and I should just cut it and come off.
Well, that didn't work and eventually I found POINT OF RETURN’s website again and I called and spoke to Alesandra. I could not believe that since I had been on the drug such a short time that I would have to take so long to come off and it meant staying the drug longer and I just wanted off so I looked into rehabs and came very close to going to one 1000 miles away but once again after research and help from Dr. Armstrong (a POR medical advisor) who actually helped me I found out that a rapid detox from this drug could have terrible consequences for someone as sensitive as I was. I had never taken anything but my thyroid med and I was so angry and frightened. I spoke to POR several times and when I finally realized that I was addicted and there was no safe escape other than a slow taper and since I tried myself and had crippling side effects and knew that self sufficient me wasn't going to be able to do this alone I checked back in with Alesandra and I finally started to come off the drug.
I have to say that without the supplements I don't know how people are able to do it because I tried several times and it was horrible, terrible thoughts, body pain like I never had, constant diarrhea and too many things to recall but as soon as I stared the SUPPORT and their other supplements, it all stopped except some mild anxiety but after all I had been through and still having some thyroid issues I felt great and did a slow taper. I have been off Ativan now for 5 weeks and even though every day isn't perfect I know that my body is healing every moment and I am on my way back and I am very confident that I will get to be even better than before. I will take the SUPPORT forever. I also have to add that Alesandra and DR. Armstrong were there Every time that I needed help whether it was a medical question or my unceasing whining or self-pity trips. (I am not the bravest soldier in the platoon but they were unbelievable with their loving support and encouragement).
Thank you Thank you Thank you. I am in the process of designing a t-shirt so I can tell the world that I am drug free thanks to POR and Google won't stop my effort to tell everyone about this wonderful group of selfless people.
Thank you Alesandra and all the wonderful people who work with you. There will definitely be an honored place in heaven for all of you.
Carol C. (Delaware) - Ativan
It started with a visit to the doctor with the complaint, “I can’t sleep”. He gave me the “little blue pill” and told me to take it for 3-4 days. I did as he said and slept well and then on the 4th night did not take it and had the worst night ever. In a panic, I took the pill again. I could not believe it; in just 3 nights I was hooked! After that I tried everything to stop taking the pill. I tried yoga, exercise, natural herbal remedies, listening to sleep CDs and half-hour sleep routines every night! I went for acupuncture and saw a naturopath, who also prescribed this thing and that (all natural, of course). But no matter what I tried, the “little blue pill” was the one constant. I could never stop taking it. If I did try, my sleeping was worse than ever. I even went back to my doctor several times and he just told me to cut the pill into pieces to take less and then prescribed me more! My whole body was filled with anxiety. I walked around with a constant knot in my throat. I was obsessed with the pill and even more obsessed with getting off of it. The worst part was that I wasn’t even sleeping well on the pill and I began spending my days in what can only be described as a fog. I spent countless hours researching on-line and trying everything I could, but still nothing worked. I was desperate! Then I came across a miracle; the Point of Return website. I called them right away and after speaking with Andrea, I knew this was for me. I thought to myself; how brilliant; someone who finally came up with a plan! I finally had hope!! I ordered a start up package and was finally on my way to getting off of the pill. The best part of it was it was easy!! The program just makes sense and very easy to do. If I had any problems or issues or just wanted to talk about it, Andrea was there for me. I would email or call her and get an immediate response. It was so nice to know somebody was there who cared, who could understand and who could offer the advice or encouragement I needed. Now I am pill free and sleeping great! I know, with out a doubt, that had I not found Point of Return, I would still be struggling and desperate.
Thank you Point of Return. Thank you Andrea. You gave me my life back and I will be forever grateful to you.
Rita M, (Canada) - Zopiclone (Lunesta)
I remember calling Alesandra for the first time and telling her my story. I remember wondering if I should be calling, it seemed like I was overreacting. A good Christian doctor had prescribed me my pills, he was someone I trusted. Yes, I had had some red flags go up, but unknown to me at the time, the drugs made me unconcerned. Surely I didn't need a rehab program. I told Alesandra why I went on the pills. My baby almost died right after she was born, and had to go on very strong medication to save her life. I was supposed to go back to work, but due to her health condition I wasn't able to leave her. My benefits company simply needed a note from my doctor to hold my job. I was worried about my little girl, and I made the horrible mistake of allowing the doctor to tell me that I was sick. That my brain chemistry was screwed up, because I was scared for her. I will fight to forgive myself for this for a very long time.
My antidepressant doses went up so quickly that I started to lie about them to my husband. I was so ashamed of being broken in this way. Then the doctor added another. He told me it would help me sleep - and that's all. He didn't mention serotonin syndrome, and that it's potentially fatal. He never monitored me in any way. I'd go in, he'd ask how I was feeling, I would tell him and he'd write a prescription, usually in a higher dose than I'd been taking. It took only moments for him and nearly destroyed my marriage, my relationships with nearly everyone I knew, our finances, and my daughters health. She was still nursing at the time, and the moment I went on anti-depressants, she stopped growing or gaining weight. Completely. Her host of doctors became very concerned and I couldn't figure it out and spent endless amounts of time pushing food down her throat, sobbing when she wouldn't eat huge amounts, and still couldn't put on weight.
When Alesandra heard how much medicine I was taking I remember her saying an expletive, apologizing, and her words of concern echoed in my head. I remember looking at those pill bottles and feeling as claustrophobic as I had ever felt. They were poison, and I had to take them that evening. I cried for days and then made the decision to quit one medication cold turkey based on how it interacted with the other. It was hell. I was hostile, sick and angry all the time. My sleep was riddled with nightmares and my waking hours were agitated. Within ten days or so, my moods leveled just enough that I felt strong enough to being my taper and search for a new doctor. I ordered the Point of Return supplements and took them religiously. I will tell you, I hated the taste of Support, but not as much as I hated my Effexor. So I kept on. I pushed myself harder than the program outlined, and allowed myself some withdrawal symptoms. I told my family to stay away from me for the day following my drop in medication, I had already hurt them so much. I've spent two months hiding out and dropping my doses every week. I am lucky enough to have a hard-working husband and the ability to be at home most of the time.
Two days ago, I took my last dose of Effexor. I was so scared. I'd missed doses in the past and I knew what not taking my medication felt like. I also knew what I'd gone through when I quit taking Zoloft cold turkey. I prepared for the worst. I won't lie to you, because of the fact that I tapered pretty quickly (37.5mg drop every seven days and not what POR recommends) I am experiencing some withdrawal symptoms. I am having pretty continuous brain zaps. I'm sore, and I am continually dizzy and nauseated unless I take a tiny piece of an anti-nauseant. But it's not debilitating. It's not NEARLY as bad as it was when I'd miss a dose before. Better than that, my mood is UP! I'm happy. I'm more relieved than I can tell you. I can't stop smiling, despite the withdrawal symptoms because I just realized I can do this. That the worst is over and I can put this behind me.
I did not think this program would work. Can I be honest? I thought it might be a scam to sell vitamins. Sorry guys!! I didn't know what to do, or where to turn and I'd just realized that I'd been on medications for almost a year that had turned me into a really mean shadow of myself and I didn't trust anybody anymore - even myself. I found POR after reading hundreds of horror stories about quitting Effexor. I was terrified and angry and ashamed. And although I know that I have a lot of healing to do from here, I can do that healing as MYSELF, without the horrible side effects of the drugs messing with my thoughts, emotions and memories.
It just occurred to me, that it's going to be okay - and I don't know how I would have gotten here without you all. Thank you so much. You didn't just give me my life back. You gave my baby girl her Mommy. My amazing husband got his wife. My mother got her daughter, my siblings got their sister back. I've been "gone" a long time, and I can't tell you how good it feels to know that I came back from that place.
Love you guys.
Mellie M. , (Canada) - Zoloft, Effexor
I wanted you to know that I am still doing well and getting better and stronger all the time. I also wanted to let you know my dog's "testimonial". About a month ago my dog Holley who is a 2 year old Aussie started coughing and gagging and just not feeling well. I took her to the vet and they put her on an antibiotic because they thought she had kennel cough, even though she had been immunized. She got worse and worse and we really thought we were going to lose her. We took her to a specialist who ran tests and found she actually had an allergic bronchitis, basically doggie athsma. He put her on steroids and she got to feeling a bit better, but the steroids were hard on her. I started giving her a tsp of Support, a spoonful of fish oil, probiotics and vitamin c. Within 24 hrs she was eating and sleeping again. Within a week she was playing and almost her old rambunctious self. From the moment we got her she has had that herding dog way of being crazy rowdy and day by day I see her getting her old spunk back! So there's another letter for your testimonial files, my dog is back because of your products! - Holley
Three months ago, I sat on my couch with my two kids as I drank a glass of wine at 9:00 in the morning. I had just added a cocktail of Xanax, Trazadone and Restoril to my Lexapro and was upset because I had reinstated my Lexapro for the 3rd time. I thought I was broken or mentally ill and would need medication for the rest of my life. I was so discouraged that the only thing that made me feel better was alcohol. I looked at my kids and I realized that I was going down a VERY dangerous path. After all, I had tried to come off the meds with no success in the past and the sad part is that the meds never made me feel any better. They only made me overweight, tired & apathetic. I was in a constant fog and couldn't make any life decisions. I was stuck: I couldn't stay on them due to the side effects but couldn't stay off of them either and this was a scary place to be.
Just 3 years earlier, I was a Personal Trainer, had a zest for life, was energetic , an optimist and I was a VERY strong Born again Christian BUT I was going through a stressful time that could have been handled with some Therapy, and diet changes. How did I get here?
One day I went to my local Urgent Care and requested something for my mild Stress and Anxiety. Looking back, the anxiety was actually pretty minor but I simply did not know what it was and began to panic and thought something was REALLY wrong with me. The Dr. told me that Lexapro was a very good drug for anxiety and I should have very little side effects. The first night I took the medication I had a complete panic attack, couldn't sleep, woke up in a cold sweat and had extreme stomach issues. The Dr. told me this was normal and it would take 6 weeks to take affect and these side effects would subside. 6 weeks had passed and now I was having more symptoms such as hair loss, severe stomach problems, apathy, didn't care about anything and actually felt worse than my original symptoms. My dad then passed away and I thought I couldn't live without the meds especially since every time I tried to wean off, I felt worse than my original symptoms.
I would then over the next 3 years try to wean myself off slowly and would come off just fine and 4 weeks later I would crash into a tailspin like I had never felt before, I would have very dark thoughts. I was then self-diagnosing myself with Bi-polar Disorder, Clinical Depression and Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Little did I now that these similar symptoms of all the above disorders were only side-effects from the withdrawal that I was constantly in for 3 years. I would search the internet for answers and the answers I did find were very grim. Most people out there were struggling to come off these meds and not very many were successful and I began to lose hope. I had started to drain myself financially as I hopped from Psychiatrist to Holistic Dr., to Liver Cleanses to Therapists, etc. I had kept switching my meds from Lexapro to Zoloft to Wellbutrin and kept adjusting my meds up and down, and always felt worse than before.
I knew SOMETHING had to change. If I wasn't going to do it for myself, I had to do it for my kids. After a half a bottle of wine in the middle of the day, I surfed the internet and found POR. Alesandra called me shortly after and finally SOMEONE who knew exactly what I was going through and she assured me that it was the meds and withdrawal making me feel crazy and it was NOT me and I was NOT mentally ill! I had told her how many times I tried to come off the Lexapro beast but would reinstate the medication and I had told her that I lived on Diet Coke and frozen Weight Watchers meals and we pinpointed that as part of my problem! I began the nutrients the next day and held out hope.
After all, I had failed 3 times in the past to stay off the meds so every time I went on the Message Boards, an Alumni would assure me that this time it would be different because I was feeding my body what it needed and tapering properly this time! It is now 3 months later and I am drug free and will stay drug free forever!
Thank you Alesandra, Terry, Andrea, Rachel and Wendy! What you do is NOT in vain!! Thank you for helping me get my life back and thank you to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
NM., (California) - Lexapro, Trazodone, Xanax, Alcohol
I just wanted to let you know that I'm doing well - thanks to your program. I don't think I could have ever done it alone. I'm more than 2 weeks tapered off of all meds. The supplements from the Point of Return program were so helpful that I needed less and less of the meds faster than I thought possible. I'm still doing a little withdrawal, but it's a whole new world. I'm so surprised at how much easier it is to sleep and how much more control I have over myself. All the things I took the meds for - I didn't get until I was off of them - how ironic. I'm working with a great nutritionalist and your program really gave me a starting point in a healthy recovery. Please thank everyone in the office for me. I am deeply grateful to you all.
This is an excellent program and I recommend it all the time. Thank You.
Diane C. , (Indiana) - Xanax
Thank you so much for your program. I had been on Amitriptyline for almost 24yrs when I discovered your program. I had tried a few times over the years to get off of it just because I hated being dependent on any medication, but to no avail. I had started having a lot of side affects from it and knew I needed to do something. I have been on your program since the 10th of Dec,2010. I have now been free of the meds for over 5weeks now and am feeling fine... I am still using the supplement as you suggested and have not had any flare ups of the fibromyalgia that I have suffered from for over 26years.
I think you are one of Gods Angels and thank you so very much.
Linda L. (Indiana) - Amitriptyline
I just wanted to send you a genuine thank you. You really (pardon my french) kicked my butt in the right direction when i needed it, and I couldnt have done it without that shove in the right direction. I never thought I would get here, being so young and not knowing myself at all without this pill. And quite frankly, I'm still a little scared to be off it, but I feel FANTASTIC! I would normally say, I feel like i have my life back, but I dont even know what life is like without Amitriptyline. but I am SO excited to find out! You guys are fantastic!!! I tell EVERYONE I know about your program. There is no way that I would have EVER gotten off this stuff without you. I am so happy to move on with my life, and to put healthy things in my body... no more pills EVER! My life has been changed, and I owe it all to you, and everyone else at POR. Thank you for all your hard work, and your perseverance, and your blood, sweat, and tears. I can promise you, that it is all worth it! I am forever grateful, and I will never stop telling people about Point of Return.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Helyn F. (North Carolina) - Amitriptyline
If you feel trapped by pharmaceuticals like SSRI’s and Benzodiazepines please know that there is hope. I am now free of the grip of Ativan and Klonopin. The Point of Return products and staff are the key to reclaiming your life! You can do this. I know because I’ve been there. Here’s what happened…
Back in 2009 I was feeling more and more depressed and anxious. As a musician I was getting down in the dumps about how the economy was affecting CD sales. I was having muscle spasms, tension, indigestion, I went to a number of chiropractors and massage therapists and nothing was fixing the muscle pain problem. It never occured to me that this was anxiety related!
I had a particular mid-back muscle that was in a knot so I tried pushing against the wall with a tennis ball against the knot. Wham! I felt an electrical spike shoot up into my head! Minutes later I was having a full blown anxiety attack! I was freaked out. These kept coming so I borrowed some Ativan from my mother. This worked perfectly!
I got my own prescription and was never told that it was incredibly addictive! In fact both my doctor and a psychiatrist never gave me a proper warning. I wish I had done a little research. I quickly went from taking .5mg every few days to 1mg every day. After about 2 months my wife said “you can’t stay on this stuff”. I new she was right so I just stopped. Oh my God! That was a nightmare. I quickly got right back on and then began to worry and feel great hopelessness about how or if I could get off.
I tried cutting the pills and put up with horrible withdrawals for months. This only worked for a while before the withdrawals became intolerable as I got down to smaller amounts of the drug. Then I made a difficult switch over to Klonopin because it was longer lasting and would dissolve in milk which meant I could taper by smaller amounts. This didn’t help much with the withdrawal problem either. I was stuck!
I really began to fear that I was going to be a casualty of benzodiazepines! How was I ever going to stop taking this? How did I ever get here? What was I thinking when I started popping these?
I started researching the internet and found Point of Return. I was really not wanting to have to go to some detox center. I was so scared. So I decided to give POR a try. I new that my withdrawals were my physiology freaking out and sensed that giving my body high quality nutrients just might help.
I was right! I started on the program and began tapering again. What a difference! There were still withdrawal symptoms (no program can eliminate these entirely) but they were so greatly diminished and I felt optimistic again! That was huge. My strength and attitude greatly improved as I stayed with the POR supplements and the amazing support I received from the on-line discussion forum.
The whole process took me about 6 months. I took the month of December 2010 off from tapering because of family responsibilities and Christmas. I picked up again in January and completed my journey in February.
I just can’t say enough about the POR products and team. They really delivered on their promise to help me through the benzodiazepine nightmare. I went from being terrified to feeling exhilarated as I reached the finished line. I am once again feeling creative and purposeful in my life!
Thank you God and Thank you Point of Return!
Paul M. (California) - Klonpoin
Dear Point-of Return Friends,
I assume that I am not one of your typical customers except for the fact that I wanted to get off of antidepressants. I was recently unemployed and not able to afford medical insurance. My incentive for choosing this particular time to take the leap was due to the fact that I was running out of medication (Lexapro) and was shocked at what my monthly costs would be without insurance, and found them cost prohibitive. My physician suggested that I could switch meds to one that was less expensive. I was hesitant to do so because it was so hard to find one that I was successfully able to get on in the first place.
I began to do research on the web to find out what I could about switching from Lexapro to another antidepressant. The more I read, the more I wanted to get off of them altogether. Fortunately, while doing my research, I came across your life-saving website and within a short time decided to order your package to get off of anti-depressants.
Because I had very little medication left before I found your website, I had already begun reducing the amount of medication by a half. Within a few days of the time I received your package, I reduced my medication by half again (one-fourth of my original dose). For those reading this testimony, I do not recommend attempting to do what I did.
Upon opening the package and reading the materials, I of course discovered another, much better, plan of withdrawal. By now, I was within just a few days of being completely out of medication, but began the first twelve days of taking the supplements as outlined in your Point-of-Return withdrawal guide. (Please note that the guide recommends completing this step - these first twelve days, before beginning reduction of medication.)
By the time I reduced my medication to one-fourth of the original dose, I began experiencing unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. With hind-sight, I see the wisdom of only reducing one’s medication as suggested in the Point-of-Return withdrawal guide. Despite my awkward plan of attack, your staff (Andrea) kindly encouraged me to stick with the program, and made specific suggestions for my particular situation. We remained in contact by email, until I had finished taking the supplements and was no longer experiencing withdrawal symptoms. I am confident that had I known about and followed the program as outlined in the withdrawal guide, I would not have experienced any withdrawal symptoms.
I am doing well and very excited to be antidepressant-free. I very much appreciate the chapters on Glutathione, Probiotics, and especially Continued Health After the Program. I found the program very helpful despite my unorthodox method of starting it, and will be forever grateful for your program, materials, and supplements. I sincerely hope that my appreciation and gratefulness, and that of other customers, makes your sacrifices and long hours to make this all possible, worth the effort.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your team members, each one of you, are truly life-savers!
Dennis N. (Washington) - Lexapro
I wanted to inform those who are considering using Point of Return to do so. Almost 3 years ago, I went to a walk in clinic for possible pneumonia. The Doctor gave me Levaquin. Although it was only 5 tablets, I immediately developed insomnia. I had never had a problem with sleeping, but after taking the levaquin,I began to struggle with sleep. After weeks of struggling, my Doctor put me on Xanax. After several months on Xanax, I was put on Lunesta to get off of the Xanax. After weaning myself off of the Xanax, I tried to wean myself off of the Lunesta and was unable to do so. I began to look online to see if there was anyone who could help me. I found Point of Return and called to find out what they could do for me. I talked to Alesandra. She began to help me put my life together. After months of weaning off of Lunesta and using the supplements, I am in the final stages of my recovery. I want to alert everyone of the dangers of Levaquin and to avoid this medicine at all costs. If you have developed insomnia as I did, please get on the program.
I cannot imagine not finding Point of Return and in particular, Alesandra. They have helped me get my life back. And to think, all because I took 5 pills.
J. B., Pastor in Tennessee
In the summer of 2010, I was diagnosed with stress disorder due to my job. My doctor prescribed an anti-depressant telling me that was how this disorder was treated. The anti-depressant caused me to have anxiety, headaches, and a major case of insomnia. I went to two other doctors seeking help. One doctor put me on Ambien, and the other doctor put me on Xanax. I took each of these drugs each night, and at first I slept very well. After being on these pills for only a couple of months I noticed my sleep had become bad again, and I was lucky if I got 3 to 4 hours, instead of the 7 to 8 I got at first. It appeared I had reached what is referred to as “Tolerance” to both Ambien and Xanax, and was having “Rebound” effects and the “Withdrawal” symptoms started to affect me greatly, and I was miserable. One night as my Brother and I prayed, we were led to look up these drugs on the internet so we could better understand what was happening to me. We were absolutely shocked to see what all of the horrible “Side Effects” of these drugs were, and I had a lot of them. My doctors had assured me these drugs were ok to use and I would not become addicted to them. Later, my doctors even told me I could just stop taking these drugs “Cold Turkey” without any problems. Thankfully I did not do this, but I did at first cut back to half of both drugs within less than one week. This was a mistake, as the “Withdrawal Symptoms” became almost unbearable. I looked on the internet for help, and that’s when I found the website for Point of Return. I enrolled in their program and started the supplements right away. Alesandra Rain at Point of Return contacted me, and helped me to start my “Tapering” process once I stabilized from my previous cuts. She helped guide me through a very rough time of weaning myself off of 2 very addictive and very powerful drugs at the same time. I finished the program in approximately 7 weeks, which is considered pretty fast. I felt I had to go fast due to the “Tolerance” issues and the already present “Withdrawal” symptoms. Between my faith in God and the help of Alesandra at Point of Return, I have been Ambien and Xanax free since December 30th of 2010.
I am continuing to improve daily, and am confident I will be back to 100% soon.
Jeff F. , (Arizona) - Ambien, Xanax
First of all, I want to say there is hope for all of you who are going through a trial you feel will never end!
I was addicted to a sleeping pill for 4 years that turned on me and stopped working. My doc told me to go cold turkey off of it which in turn sent me into the worst hell of my life…withdrawal!! I thought I was going to die…from panic attacks to tremors to wondering if I would ever be normal again. After multiple doctors, more drugs and NO answers, I then found Point of Return (POR)!
Alesandra was my angel on the other end of that phone call walking me through how to conquer this! She was the most sensitive, loving person who gave me so much hope to push forward. She could relate to me because of all that she had gone through. Her book made me feel like I had known her forever.
I never thought I would sleep again, but Alesandra kept telling me to hold on and be patient. The POR program works. Every piece of advice she gave me was proven true. I am now sleeping GREAT and the support/sleep and relax has helped me with that!! It really, truly works!
I give the glory to God for directing my path to Alesandra and the team!
Debbie H. , (California) - Temazepam, Paxil, Neurontin
I am writing to let anyone reading this know that finding Point of Return (POR) has been a miracle for me. I had a horrific reaction to quitting Lorazapam cold turkey, after suffering for several months I agreed to take Amitriptyline as I felt it would allow me to atleast leave the house for my daughter's wedding. After several months of the debilitating side effects of the Amitriptyline I found Point of Return and ordered the program.
The effect on my poor body was almost immediate. Unfortunately I wasn't eating well and was "self-medicating" with alcohol which interfered with my taper of course. I ended up reinstating the medication, cleaning up my diet and going for help with my alcohol addiction. Within weeks I was feeling better than I have in years. My second taper was smooth and painless and now I am free of medication. It is a most wonderful feeling.
I cannot say enough good things about the entire POR team. They have somehow found just the right balance between professionalism and compassion that people who are suffering need. I will be forever grateful. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Robin T. , (California) Amitriptyline
I am so grateful to Point of Return for helping me to get my life back. After two hospitol induced drug over doses that nearly took my life, I found Point of Return and they helped me to get off Ativan. Not only was this drug not needed but it did countless damage to my body and brain. Later I was properly diagnosed with toxicity to the brain and with the help of Point of Return and a good naturopath I am healing rapidly and feel healthier than Idid before I became ill in the first place. I was also diagnosed with hypothyroid and low hormones even though the tests said I was fine. I had my thyroid tested multiple times and now I have the proper dianoses and treatment of my thyroid and endrocrine system.
I was able to get so much needed relief from the supplements during my withdrawl process as the drugs I was put on (Ativan and Trileptal) made me feel aweful. My panic is gone and My bi-polar and depression issues are melting away as well.
As an artist I was unable to dance and sing much less take care of my family. I am so grateful I get to be free to live my dreams now! I still am in the recovery process but I relish life and cherish every day that God has given to me. I thank Him often for leading me to Point of Return.
For those out there who are struggling or who are watching a loved one suffer. There is hope and you can get the help you need.
Tammi M. (USA) Ativan
Point of Return helped save my life!
Without Point of Return (POR) I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be writing this drug free and feeling so good. In fact, I hate to even think about where I would be if I didn’t find POR...terrible, I’m sure.
My nightmare began overnight with a mysterious illness. For two months I suffered through electrical currents in my brain and spine, adrenaline surges, racing heart, vomiting, intestinal distress, extreme nausea, dizziness, weakness, anxiety, shortness of breath and extreme sensitivity to any stimulus. After emergency room and doctors visits and numerous tests, they told me they couldn’t find anything wrong with me and gave me Ativan.
The Ativan helped for the first couple of days...then things grew much worse. Ativan brought on unnatural thoughts of fear, depression and paranoia. Although it lessoned the brain zaps, it made me feel worse. I was in constant, extreme fear. When I tried to stop the Ativan cold turkey I got even sicker. I truly thought I was dying.
By God’s Grace I found POR.
From the moment Alesandra said hello on the phone I knew I was in the hands of Angels. I was so sick, afraid, and confused about what was happening to me. She patiently and lovingly talked with me at length about the program, the effects of the drug, and what was going on with my body. She knew from experience everything I was describing.
I ordered the supplements and started taking them the next day. Within two weeks I could feel a big difference. As POR continued to work with me and tweak my program I felt better and better. The brain zaps and electrical currents completely stopped within weeks. My digestive symptoms greatly improved. The fear and anxiety lessoned with each reduction of Ativan.
The healing process can be a roller-coaster of ups and downs. The underlying causes of my illness plus the horrible side-effects of Ativan left me unable to work or do much of anything but fight through the symptoms. But POR helped me through it every step of the way. I did everything I could to help the process: change my diet, reduce stress in my life, emotional/mental/spiritual work on myself, and anything POR recommended. I kept my focus on the improvements, inspiration, gratitude and every small step forward. I would not have made it without POR...this I am sure of.
Just one month off Ativan and I am feeling amazing! I am astounded by how much healing took place during my taper. With the continued help of the POR supplements I am able to deal with my underlying physical imbalances pretty much symptom free.
If you are reading this and suffering the effects of prescription drugs, you have found a program that really works. You have found people who truly care about your well-being and have passionately dedicated their lives to helping you get back yours. With the loving and generous service of POR I not only got my life back...I reclaimed my Freedom, my Passion and my Health.
POR is an organization run on the principles of love and service. They give above and beyond anything I have every received from expensive experts and doctors. And they give it freely relying on donations rather than Doctor or Consulting Fees. They are truly a group of remarkable people filled with Light and Love.
I am forever grateful for POR and its dedication to serve us until we find our way back to Freedom. I am grateful for the miracle of POR, the unconditional love of my family and God’s Strength and Love that led me to Victory over Ativan, the Mysterious Illness and all that which would steal my Freedom.
Thank you POR. You can count on my continued support.
With Gratitude and Love,
Jennifer P. (VIRGINIA) Ativan
How on earth did I get on this road again? I had been here before and vowed never, ever to let this happen again. But somehow, years and years later, thousands upon thousands of dollars later, multiples and multiples of psychiatric drugs and misdiagnosis and withdrawals later…….. Here I was, back on the “Devil’s in a bottle” yet again. I will just go from “Yet again” as that is where POINT OF RETURN, INC. entered my life.
I had been given three rounds of a steroid for chronic bronchitis. I got better…..too much better and before I knew it, I was manic! I called my doctor and told her I thought there was something wrong and she told me to just stop the last round of Prednisone. So, I just stopped. Over the next several days I began to hallucinate, my heart was palpitating out of my chest, I was in a cold sweat and the list goes on. I had to resign from my teaching job. I couldn’t care for my children. It was just a 24/7 nightmare. I had already been rushed via ambulance to the ER because I thought I was having a heart attack. They found nothing. The doctor, knowing my previous experience but truly not knowing what else to do, gave me some Klonopin and I took it! It is amazing what one will do when they feel as if they are staring death in the face. Within minutes, the mania was gone. I remembered just before I took it, that I got on my knees and prayed that if this was the wrong thing to do that God would have to show me the way out of it, “yet again”. Little did I know that the way out would be POINT OF RETURN three years later. So, while the Klonopin worked for the mania, I started having tremendous pain in areas where I had had multiple surgeries. I went to a pain management specialist and was given Hydrocodone and Oxycodone and plenty of it. Then, I couldn’t sleep. I went to see about that and was reassured by a reputable compounding pharmacist (and they know more about prescription drugs than just about anybody) that Ambien was NOT addictive and that I couldn’t believe everything I read. So here I am…. heading right back down the road to destruction and hell that I thought I would never be on again.
I started having so many physical ailments. I wound up having major surgery for GERD and a gall bladder removal. Less than a year later, I had exploratory surgery to see if the disease of Endometriosis had grown back even though I had had a complete hysterectomy. While going through all these surgeries, it just didn’t seem prudent to come off these medications. I never realized that it was probably these medications that actually led to the surgeries. It is such a vicious, evil cycle. I had come across Alesandra’s book “Deeds of Trust” and had read it and tucked it away on the back burner. I knew that I could not continue on this path. After the last surgery and adequate recuperation time I looked up POINT OF RETURN and emailed them. Terry forwarded my email to Alesandra and she called me! God did hear my prayer! Now, 15 months later, I am finally as of November 6, 2010……..DRUG FREE! It wasn’t easy. However, with the support of Alesandra, Terry and the POINT OF RETURN protocol, I am finally on the road to complete physical, emotional and mental healing. Angels come in all forms. These people and this program were truly…..”HEAVEN SENT”. Thank you God. Thank you to my husband Dan for his never ending support and belief in me and unconditional love. Thank you to my two beautiful boys, Drew and Graham who just kept on loving me when I was not loveable. Last but not least…….Thank you Alesandra for your never ending words of encouragement, advice, love and new found friendship. Thank you Terry for ALWAYS getting those products to me whenever I needed them and to wherever I happened to be. I am forever grateful to all of you.
Becky W. (NORTH CAROLINA) Ambien, Klonopin, Valiu, Hydrocodone, Oxycodone
My story began July 2008 when I had some teeth extracted. I suffered pain for many months following the tooth extraction and never understood why. I went to numerous dentists, specialists (even 200 miles away), my family doctor and never could find the cause of the pain. Finally my family dentist recommended that I go to a neurologist to see if I had trigeminal nerve damage. Prior to the MRI I was given 2 mg. of Ativan because of being claustrophobic. For the next several days I was pain free and I related that information to my family dentist. He prescribed 0.5 mg Ativan and that is how it all started.
I later went to a dentist that specializes in dental prosthetics and was told that more than likely I had suffered some nerve damage in my jaw. He told me the pain may get better over time and then again it may not – the only thing I could do was to take medication for the pain. My prescription was running out. I went to our family doctor and explained everything. He continued a prescription of 0.5 mg. Ativan daily for the pain. I was told that 0.5 mg. was non-addictive and I could take that amount for an indefinite time without any worry.
Some months later, my body was building a tolerance and I felt a need for more. I did not want to take more than one pill a day – I had to get off of these pills. I tried going “cold turkey” (as suggested by my doctor) – that did not work. I tried cutting the dosage in half – things got worse. I became so desperate that I inquired about going into a rehab center. It was then my husband found POINT OF RETURN (POR) on the internet.
I contacted POR and Terry was the first person I spoke with. I ordered the supplements and started the program with a determination that I was going to make it. The POR staff and the POR family was there to help me throughout my “roller-coaster” journey. The journey was rough. Many days I felt like it was just me and my God on this path and I thank Him for the strength to persevere. I can gladly tell you today that even though the journey was rough; I am Ativan free today. I suffered some horrendous things while going through the withdrawal process but let me remind you – that is all temporary – it does get better. I may have to learn to cope with nerve pain but it will be without the Ativan.
To those still on the journey to become drug free – you can make it! Follow the POINT OF RETURN program, the recommended diet, take the supplements and most of all, be determined. Know that many other people have completed the journey before you – they were victorious and you will be too!
Glenda M. (ALABAMA) Ativan
Oh, what a celebration. I’ve completed the tapering of Klonopin. I took it for 10 years, 2 mg. at night for sleep. Had I only known what type of drug this was I never would have ever taken it. It’s unfortunate that, from my understanding, prescribing physicians do not tell their patients that this, and other benzodiazepine drugs, should not be taken longer than 14 days, 28 max.
I have lived the most horrible 7 years with health issues stemming from the effects of taking this drug. Luckily, none were life-threatening.
Unfortunately, this drug takes you down. I haven’t been able to work for 5 years. I was declined an individual health insurance policy with BCBS last year because I was taking a benzo. This is when I decided I had to regain my health and get off these drugs.
I knew I had to get my body physically in better health first so to take on this challenge. In May, I began eating clean --- fresh fruits and veggies, grass-fed, free-range hormone-free meat, no sugar or caffeine, no fast food or processed foods. June 1, I stopped the Klonopin cold-turkey. Three days later I realized this was impossible. I researched the Internet and found Point Of Return (POR). I called and spoke to Terry. Having been taken by the medical industry several times, I’m skeptical doing anything. However, after reading the information provided on their website and knowing what they were saying was true, I was confident they knew what they were doing. I ordered the supplements and took them for 6 weeks before beginning my tapering schedule.
I was anxious to get this done and over. I experienced some personal challenges. I found out it is not good to get a deep tissue massage when tapering. I also found out how sensitive I am to MSG. Four weeks before ending my taper, I made the mistake of eating a grilled chicken salad at McDonald’s. Oh…the depression that I had. It was almost unbearable. It sent me to bed and drained me of all energy. I couldn’t get groceries or cook. I thought I would help myself by ordering pasta from Pizza Hut to nibble on throughout the week until I recovered. Wrong! The depression lingered and got worse. It was so bad, that I called Alesandra and told her I was going to have to go back on an antidepressant. She asked what I had eaten and I told her. She recognized it as being the MSG. From these two meals, Alesandra had researched and found they contained 21 ingredients having MSG. At least I knew the culprit and would not have to go on an antidepressant.
My sweet daughter-in-law came by and took me to get MSG-free groceries and made me 3 casseroles, baked sweet potatoes and a large fresh fruit salad to last me a week. We thought we were careful in selecting our groceries; however, not true. MSG is well hidden in food labels. My depression got worse after eating one of the casseroles. I looked up the ingredients and found that the cheese contained “potato starch.” It is high in MSG.
There were other incidents when I needed adjustments in my supplements. POR was always there. Alesandra must have her computer attached to her and on at all times. She is so quick to answer emails and phone calls. She, Terry and Andrea have truly been a lifeline and support. Knowing they are there makes the tapering process much, much easier. Thank you POR. You saved my life. Without you I would not have been able to do this on my own. I can start living again.
Kacee - Klonopin 2 mg's, 10 years
As a psychotherapist, I have adequate training on psychotropic medication and the effects that they can have on the human mind and behavior, including side effects like discontinuation syndrome. However, all of my training in psychopharmacology and psychology could not have prepared me for the almost one year debilitating experience that I underwent while on Ativan.
In January of 2010, I was given a flouriquinolone along with a steroid following a minor surgical procedure. Soon after, I experienced a reaction to the medications, including pain, insomnia, rapid heartbeat, blurry vision, hallucination, fever and numbness of the extremities. At the emergency room, I was instructed to discontinue the medications and was given Ativan in order to stabilize my central nervous system and promote sleep after 3 nights of insomnia.
Two weeks of taking 2mg of Ativan, I decided to discontinue using a standard rapid taper. I was alarmed to discover that just after 2 weeks, my body was unable to handle discontinuation of Ativan. I then concluded that perhaps a “chemical imbalance,” had developed as a result of the antibiotic and steroid I had taken and decided to continue taking Ativan until my CNS “balanced,” itself out.
The medication created unusual symptoms which resulted in my resignation from work as I was not able to maintain enough mental clarity to carry out my duties as a psychotherapist. I was devastated. Soon after, I moved back to my hometown to begin to find a way to resolve my dilemma.
I consulted a physician and a psychiatrist friend and attempted to carry out their recommended tapering schedule. I was not able to advance much without suffering excruciating panic and anxiety. I became increasingly alarmed as I had never experienced anxiety before any of it started. At that point I was experiencing paranoia, muscle aches and pains, irrational thoughts and fears about possible illnesses that I might have, weight loss, rapid heart beat, night sweats, muscle twitching, jock itch, dry irritated eyes, depersonalization, derealization, a drunk hung over feeling, tight band feeling and pressure around my head, dark thoughts, etc. I decided to discontinue my doctoral studies at that point as well as I was not able to drive much of the time. I was home ridden and began to develop moderate agoraphobia.
One night out of desperation I went cold turkey and ended up at the ER. The following day, I began to research benzo withdrawal on the internet and immediately came upon Point of Return. I was skeptical as I had only heard of people battling prescription medication dependence in an inpatient facility and had never heard of such a thing occurring on an outpatient basis. I had nothing to loose so I gave Point of Return (POR) a call the next day. Andrea was the first contact I spoke to and the information and facts she provided convinced me to give the program a try. I ordered the supplements that same day.
The nutrients immediately began to let their effects known to me; I felt increasing vigor and stamina, the withdrawals became tolerable and my sleep stabilized. Of course, I had my ups and downs, mainly due to not following protocol but I came out through to the other side. On 1 occasion out of idiocy, I decided not to take the SUPPORT product to test its effectiveness; I had the most difficult taper that week and from then on decided that the SUPPORT was indeed a vital component to the process and that is was not a mere coincidence that my taper was easier.
Today is the first day I am off the medications and I have not felt this great in months. I am excited…my sense of humor has returned and I am looking forward to the future…things I never thought I would have again. All of the symptoms mentioned above have resolved. The only things I am experiencing at this point are muscle soreness, some fatigue and occasional headache.
Alessandra and Terry are also experts in their field. They are generous with their time and information and even made themselves available during the late night hours of the weekend. The conversations, emails and forum interactions provided me with much education and support. Alesandra and Terry both guided me to nutritional leads from which I was able to select and use to further promote a smooth taper. I feel as if I have received additional training than most of my colleagues will receive on nutrition and brain function and care. No doubt this education will serve me in the years to come for my own health, that of my family and my own patients struggling with dependence and addiction.
I would like to acknowledge my sister Elsa who is also a psychotherapist and provided me with much support and patience, and the forum moderators,Wendy and Rachel for your constant support, dedication and reassurance and everyone who has gone before me on the program and found healing….thank you all. I will never forget this experience and the invaluable lessons it has taught me. I feel enriched as a human being, as a student and as a professional.
Tony Q., MFT (CALIFORNIA) Ativan
My doctor without warning decided she would not write a new prescription for Ativan. I had been taking it for six years to help manage anxiety. Without a prescription I went from four to six one milligram tablets per day to none. With the rug pulled out from under me, my life went into a tailspin. The panic attacks were disabling. Begging my doctor for relief and asking why this was happening to me she said, “you’re probably addicted.” I’ll never forget those words. It made me feel like a street junkie. All I did was follow directions.
After a knock down drag out argument, my doctor agreed to a prescription of one Ativan one milligram tablet per day. My misery continued. I was in a very deep dark place. I knew it was up to me to find some answers. Barely functioning I went to the internet. I searched Ativan addiction and up popped Point Of Return. I could not believe what I was reading. The part on Benzo’s and withdrawals described my nightmare completely. Thank God I was not alone.
I guess my doctor realized I wasn’t going away. I laid out POR’s plan and the tapering schedule and she agreed to do it. Next was to get a compounding pharmacist on board. I talked with two. My experience was that these people are wonderful to work with. Unfortunately my doctor said we could cut the tablets down to size and the compounding pharmacist wasn’t necessary. I had no fight left in me. The tablets prove to be a headache to cut.
My withdrawal symptoms continued to rage out of control. I wish I could tell you that the suppliments from POR afforded relief right away, but I was too far behind the eight ball. It is imperative that one follows POR’s recommendations and guidelines whenever possible. The suppliments seem to be playing catch up in combating my condition. It was so comforting having POR’s team just a phone call away.
If anyone continues to experience withdrawal symptoms-don’t give up! It was two to three weeks before the suppliments brought me relief. Meanwhile they were protecting my body from the Benzo beast. Hang in there! Over the following weeks things continued to improve and today I’m Ativan free!
My deepest gratitude goes out to my wife Stacy, the POR team, Alesandra, Andrea, and Terry. I can’t thank you enough.
Bob A. (FLORIDA) Ativan
First, I just want to say thank you to the fabulous staff at Point of Return (POR) – Alesandra, Andrea and Terry for all the help and guidance in, not only attaining a med-free life, but also greater health! The past year has been quite a ride (and one I never want to repeat), but through your help, the terrific POR supplement program, and friends on the forum, I'm on my way back to health.
But, let me start at the beginning. As a result of headaches and occipital neuralgia caused by muscle tension and stress, I was given a dose of steroids by an Orthopedist. Within 2 days of finishing the steroid, I started shaking…and it kept getting worse. After being prescribed Flexeril,Celexa, Xanax, Ativan and Trazadone (consecutively), I was finally given a diagnosis of anxiety…along with Valium and Lunesta by my OB/GYN. Fortunately, all were relatively short-lived, except the Valium. Initially, the Valium worked. My neck and shoulders felt better and the anxiety felt manageable. However, soon the muscle tension started getting worse, as did my anxiety between doses. After searching the internet for solutions: I found Point of Return, (POR).
My journey has been much shorter than many, although it feels like a lifetime to me. It was a downward spiral, but my body is finally beginning to recover physically. I'm amazed that 7 weeks of Benzos led to (for me) 6 mos. of tapering. Because of both physical and emotional set-backs, I had to postpone and hold my tapers multiple times. I actually tapered longer than I was on Benzos to begin with! However, with much encouragement, I continued down the path of healing toward a single, focused goal…to be free of the Benzo beast. As I've said previously, I've counted on the support of three very special people – Alesandra, Andrea and Terry – some incredible supplements, and a whole lot of determination. Failure was not an option for me.
I'm no different than any one of you reading this. If you think you're the only one that won't heal (and believe me, you're not alone), you will. If you think that your sleep will never return…guess again. It will. If you believe that you're the only one who will fail on the supplements, you're wrong. How do I know? I've been there (as have many before me). And…believe me; I've had every doubt that you've had. So while I still have my occasional "off" moments or days, the good days now FAR outnumber the bad.
I think it's so important to focus on the "End Zone". Of course, it's far easier to try to sabotage our own healing, and focus and obsess and blame our lack of recovery on everything but the real culprit…the pharmacologic answer. The magic pill. In reality, we just need to stay the course, keep our eyes focused on the prize, and focus on "what is" instead of getting mired in "what if's". And "what is" is the present: putting one foot in front of the other and crossing the finish line. So know that it's possible to begin healing. It may not be a cake walk, but you will cross the finish line too. Please, please, please trust the program and our fabulous team at POR.
Love you all!
Janet S. (MINNESOTA) Valium
As I started writing this I just remembered back when I was reading these testimonials when first finding this program. Thinking how lucky I would be if I got to that point where I could write one, something that seemed nearly impossible at the time. And now here I am .
Before I get into how I was right before finding Point of Return (POR) , let me share a little about how this all started in the first place. I was 24 years old, very healthy, in great shape. I was a personal trainer at a gym, very active, athletic...that was my life. Then an accident happened while I was at the gym( In 2006), the machine I was working out on snapped and struck me on the top of the head. Causing damage to the frontal lobe...Also snapping my head forward, crushing nerves in the back of my neck and leading to alot of nerve pain in my neck, back, other extremeties. Eventually leading to parasthesia( tingling, burning sensations) in other extremeties. Over time things kept getting worse for me, and wasn't getting any answers from doctors. And it's not easy dealing with all of these new issues on your own, not having any idea what they are, because I've obviously never experienced any of it before. I've been injured before, I've broken bones...but never this. Was always used to just fighting through an injury, would still play sports and workout with a broken arm, broken rib, etc. Not that I enjoyed the pain, but I just couldn't resist doing something I enjoyed so much . However with this injury, the more I tried to do, the more I set myself back..and would just end up with new symptoms that would get worse and worse and ended up with me going to the hospital eventually to try to figure out what was going on. But that never got me anywhere besides being offered a different med each time.
I always resisted taking a med that a doctor wanted to put me on, but eventually would give in to some , justifying it saying they know what they are doing and I don't want to feel this way anymore so let me give it a shot. Started taking klonopin in the beginning because I was having panic attacks, lots of anxiety. Was also taking pain killers for the pain I was in. Then I was put on Ambien because I couldn't sleep. And was on plenty of other meds throughout the last 3 years. And now that I am off everything, feeling so much more clear minded..getting a bit of myself back, I realize that most of the bad things I went through was because all of the medication I was on, it wasn't just the injury. The pain still would have been there without meds, but they made it worse. They weakened my mind over time, making me not able to handle the pain as much . Basically not being able to handle anything. Any type of stress would set me off. And that's what bothered me most because I was very strong before any of that. I just wasn't me. And I thought that person was gone forever because of the injury. But that is what taking all of those pills makes you believe. It's all false. So if there is one thing I hope you get out of reading this is don't believe the way you are feeling now is permanent. Don't think your situation is different and that there isn't any hope for you. Because believe me, it is the medicine making you feel that way.
I prayed to God every day throughout the 3 years, asking for help. I will admit there were times I was ready to give up. When the pain got real bad, sleepless nights, the restrictions..not being able to live..be active, etc I would lose hope at times. The more time that went by , the less hope I had. It was all draining me, it was a struggle just to get out of bed and go up the stairs. Eventually my goals got smaller and smaller. In the beginning it was about wanting to live the life I had before again, to get completely better and be active, be the happy person I always was..then I ended up giving up on that and just hoping not to feel so sick all the time, get a couple hours of sleep, not ache and burn so much, to not feel so "crazy" all the time. Things like that. The worst feeling is when I did sleep and would dream about good things happening but then wake up to reality..my never ending nightmare. I wanted to sleep all the time, I just didn't want to think anymore. Too much pain physically and mentally. And that is why I was on a lot of the meds , but eventually realizing a lot of those bad thoughts, feeling achy, overall not healthy at all was because of the meds. All of those times praying to God for help, then the times where I would get mad at Him, asking why is this happening( I think we all get to that point where we think enough is enough, why is this happening to me, when will it stop, why can't I just get my life back? And they are all the wrong thoughts). Because over time I was giving up , losing hope. And that is the scariest thing, losing that. When life just didn't seem that important anymore. I remember always thinking life is too short, didn't want to get older , wanting to enjoy every minute I could, then after going through the suffering non stop for 3 and a half years I started thinking life is too long, that I'm ready to be at peace now. It's a scary thing. And I had to get myself out of that mode a lot. To keep pushing when there wasn't much left.
And why I am saying all this right now is because I'm telling you that most of the way I was feeling was because of the meds. Yes there were plenty of things I was going through without the meds but they were making it worse, much worse. I didn't know that before, and honestly wasn't real sure about it when starting this program either. I read the testimonials and I tried being a bit hopeful that it was the reason I was doing so bad too, but thinking to myself my situation is different and I had a brain injury and so many other things have gone wrong . So it would take a miracle for it to work for me. I was running on fumes at the time I found POR. And I will never forget that day because that is when God did answer my prayers, that was my miracle. I'm sitting here right now only 6 months later and I'm doing a lot better mentally. My mind is so much more clear now. I am getting myself back. I am still going through a lot of pain yet handling it better now, shrugging it off and being positive. I still have a ways to go , no doubt, but the difference is I am "looking forward" to everything now. I am excited about the future. I see a future for me. Each day I am getting memories back , good memories. Before the injury I could walk outside, and just look around and be happy. Appreciate everything God has given us. Not needing anything to go my way to be happy but just to stand there, look up at the sky and appreciate life. I lost that during the three years. And I am getting that back now . The excitement to live is coming back. I am so thankful for Alesandra, Terry, Andrea, and everyone else involved at POR. They go above and beyond to make sure everyone gets through this as comfortable as possible, they make sure we succeed. Because they "know" we can if we follow the program exactly the way it is. There is no doubt for them like there is for us when starting this. They are on the other side, they've seen and experienced everything we have been through and know exactly what it takes to heal. I've gone to many..many doctors over these years, been to brain rehab , etc and nobody understands the way they do. Nobody had the answers they had. Nobody ever took control and layed out the steps to recovery. I always ended up going home and just dealing with things on my own again, trying to figure out what I should listen to and what not to listen to from the doctors. Because of so many setbacks I have had by listening to them, I lost that trust.
I can't thank POR enough and the best thing is knowing there are people out there like them. That's what makes me happy.
Johnny D. (MICHIGAN) Klonopin, Remerone, Suboxone
I have been PAXIL free almost two months now. I never thought I was going to be able to say that.
It started almost a decade ago. I had been having some pretty crazy sensations that were unexplainable. I had been dealing with them fairly well. Then it all broke loose on a trip up to Northern California with my mother and son. I was experiencing the worst anxiety and panic and had no idea what was happening to me. Somehow I got through the weekend and had my husband take me to the emergency room the following Monday morning. I was prescribed Xanax. I new better than to take that but then headed to my doctor for a better answer. I assumed it was life threatening. She prescribed Paxil and Clonazepam. At that time, the only knows meds to me that seemed bad were Xanax, Valium and Prozac. As long as I didn't get those, I thought I was ok. The anxiety lessened as I got used to the medication. I guess it didn't matter at the time that I lost a lot of feelings and emotions. Little did I know that the decision to take that medication would turn into a downward spiral that would last almost ten years. At that point I wasn't offered other alternatives or given any explanation for the anxiety.
The next ten years I spent thousands of dollars on therapists, gadgets, books and anything advertized that promised relief from the anxiety that I was experiencing. My life seemed to even into a pattern of being ok for a couple of years then become a train wreck for at least six months at a time. This kept going on. I wasn't the only one suffering. Unfortunately my family suffered along with me. I can't believe I was so clueless in blaming myself and not realizing that the meds were the main culprit. I think I tried at least six or seven psychiatrists and more than twenty different medications that I never should have. I can't even spell them and yet I had no problem putting them into my system. Luckily most of them I only tried a few times. The times that I was feeling ok, I still worried about when the shoe would drop. It always did.
I never dropped my quest to find a way out. I finally came across the POR website and decided to order. I could not believe how fast my emails were answered and how much I could accomplish in a phone call to them. I had finally found my answer to the nightmare I had been living. I took longer than most, but I made a lot of changes in my life that will stick with me forever. The forum also became and still is extremely invaluable to me. I did have sleepless nights but I spent most of them pouring over the POR testimonials and hoping someday I would be able to write my own. They gave me hope and made me feel like I could do the same.
I will always be so grateful to Alesandra, Andrea, Terry, Rachel and Wendy. They truly watched over me and I never could have finished without them. I have a whole file with Alesandra's emails that have become such a treasure to me. I have them from start to finish and are so detailed that they are a journal in themselves from her to me of my journey.
I know I appreciate life more than I ever did. I will continue to support POR and the people that helped me regain my life. I never would have the happiness that I am now currently experiencing without them.
Thank you for the bottom of my heart for everything.
Love, Pam R. (CALIFORNIA) Klonopin, Paxil
It all started less than a year ago. I was involved in a pretty scary car accident. Soon after that I noticed some discomfort in my chest and went to the Doctor right away. He didn’t find anything wrong and told me it was muscular. I was still worried and made an appointment with a cardiologist just to be safe.
A month had gone by already by the time I saw the cardiologist and took all the necessary tests. This caused several sleepless nights and at the same time I started to develop some anxiety.
It was a week or so before getting my results from the cardiologist that I had a panic attack and ended up in the hospital. A psychiatrist came to see me and talked to me for only a couple of minutes. Right away he prescribed Clonazepam at night and Xanax during the day. I decided to take Clonazepam only, and still had many questions regarding the medication.
For the first week or so, it worked very well, but I was already feeling tired during the day. And soon after that I started to get very bad side effects. I lost weight and I knew I had to get off the medication but the Doctor thought I had to be on it for a while. My friends and family thought the same as well so I knew then hat I had to look for an alternative on my own. I tried to quit on my own by taking some natural herbs, but it made it worse. I went back to my original dose and started to research the Internet.
I found POR and called immediately. It all made sense but I was very skeptical. For the next few days I thought about it, made some more research and finally decided to order my supplements. I was still skeptical but deep inside I trusted this new family I had found.
It has been a difficult journey and there were times at the beginning where I didn’t know if I would be able to finish the program and there were times when I thought that my only option was to reinstate the medication. But as soon as I gain confidence and started to build some nutrients in my body, everything became easier. And every time I needed support or had any questions POR was there, answering my calls and emails (even during the weekend).
I finished the taper on April 7, 2010 and I am so excited to be done with this monster benzo. Point of Return definitely works. I have learned so much about myself and because of this became a much stronger person. I will never forget this experience and hope that it can inspire others in the same situation. I am so grateful for this program and to Alesandra, Andrea and Terry for helping and guiding me through this experience. You guys are great!!! God bless you always!!
Juan H. (TEXAS) Clonazepam
My journey was the nightmare from Elm Street. There was no end in sight. The light at the end of the tunnel was a train.
It all started one fine afternoon in February with a doctor visit for some mild anxiety about a PVD “floater” that had developed in my left eye. I was prescribed Ativan at 1 mg in the evenings to calm my anxiety but also for sleep. After a month, I noticed that my falling asleep was becoming increasingly more difficult and raised the evening dose to 2mg. As a few weeks progressed, the 2mg of Ativan became non-effective in inducing sleep and was prescribed 10mg Ambien to take instead of Ativan but to continue to take the Ativan during the day. After a few weeks it all quit working for sleep.
Doctor then prescribed a small dosage cocktail of Remeron, Amitriptyline, and Trazadone. Idea was that each one in a small dose would cause sleepiness. At times one would work, and then another, then it was decided to take them all together before bed. If I could not fall asleep then would take the Ambien after the cocktail. Continued with 2mg of Ativan during the day. Then was put on Lexapro to take during the day because I was now depressed and anxious.
My blood pressure was now at 180. Pulse would run in the 120. Sugar was in the 140’s. A big piece of the problem was no one ever told me how addictive Ativan was and if you quit taking it---you went to a major withdrawal.
The last day of my old life in an attempt to stay sane included Ativan during the day along with Lexapro. Then for sleep—would start with the cocktail of Remeron, Trazadone and Amitriptyline about an hour before bed (varying the doses each night somewhat). That would never cause sleep—so would then at bedtime take 10 mg of Ambien. In an hour take another 10mg of Ambien. And if that did not knock me out (which in the end – it would not)—top it all off with 1 or 2mg of Ativan. Wow—what a day of pill popping---all for a little sleep.
One spectacular Saturday in August, I was researching on the Internet about how different drugs had different channels to the brain and how some did not work together—stuff way over my head—but somehow found Alesandra’s web site. I called and spoke with Terry. He told me that I really needed to speak with Alesandra and I left my number. That evening I was horribly depressed at my parents home.
About 9pm I got this phone call from Alesandra. I was amazed that someone was calling me back that late on a Saturday evening. But for 2 hours, she and I talked about everything. It was the first time in my 6 month ordeal that someone knew what I was going through and understood my problems.
I had spoken to at least 10 different shrinks, sleep counselors; etc…everyone wanted to put me on some other type of drug. Alesandra knew exactly in less than an hour how badly I was messing with my brain chemistry by taking all that crap and in different doses. My brain was being zapped daily and there was no end to it. That evening I concluded to limit myself to a max of 3 drugs and stabilize the chemistry in my brain.
Ativan was number one—because it was the most addictive. I was given the choice of what other two I thought I needed for sleep. I decided on Remeron and Ambien. That evening, I took the Remeron at bedtime with 2 mg of Ativan and fell asleep without the Ambien. Thereafter, I never took Ambien again and with the regimen of POINT OF RETURN’s treatment and a slow gradual withdrawal of the Ativan and Remeron, I was healed and drug free within a short period of time.... that was 2 years ago.
Thank you God for directing my web fingers to Point of Return.
Mark M. (OKLAHOMA) Remeron, Ativan
I asked my wife to schedule our family’s annual check-up and she told me that it could be by mid-March of 2009, in time for the kids Spring Break. The moment she told me the schedule, I began to experience some sort of negative thoughts about the result. And because of a long waiting time, everyday was like a torture to me about my health. After a while, I began to experience those sleepless nights which I tried to alleviate with wine every dinner, heavy coffee every morning and some tea in the afternoon. I didn't know I was brewing a disaster, because of sleeplessness, heavy caffeine plus alcohol.
March 3, I was at the office when I felt this troubling sensation, numbness of extremities, shortness of breath, dizziness; heart pounding and I thought I was having a heart attack. I asked a friend to rush me to a hospital. I thought that was the end of me. A nurse asked questions and put me on machines, checked my vitals and gave me Ativan shot. In 15 minutes or so, the doctor and told me that my heart was good. It was nothing, just a "Panic Attack" – that was some new words to me. They gave me a few more tablets of Ativan and sent me home. The doctor told me to take one-half of 2 mg pill in the morning, the other half in the afternoon and take the whole 2 mg at night and I should be fine. There was no mention about the nature of this Ativan pill and how long should I take this or when to stop and how this would affect me.
The first two weeks, Ativan worked really well, but after that, the feel-good effects gradually faded. A few more days later, my anxiety and depression grew bigger in me due to sleeplessness. I didn’t have depression before taking the Ativan pill. So our family doctor added Paxil to my meds. I took it and stopped immediately after 2 days. It gave me body tremor and extreme anxiety. Then he replaced it with Prozac, which I took only for a day for the same reason. It gave me more body tremor and seizure-like symptoms. After a month or so, I developed this panicky feeling and chronic insomnia. My doctor asked me to just stop everything including Ativan (cold-turkey) and he replaced them all with Temazepam 30mg and Trazodone 100mg. My sleep went to zero the first few days then improved after a week then gone again. At that point, my body was deteriorating and I was loosing weight fast. The meds were not helping at all and the symptoms abruptly came with so much pain and mental torture.
I was in agony day and night for months. But I still need to work to support my family. I couldn’t simply make the world stop so I could take a rest. I have a young family to support. At times, I just walk out of my office because of this overwhelming frustration and pain. We have acres of tree-lined ground and a man-made mini-lake/water falls in the office campus. Somehow the environment had a calming effect on me. I walk alone praying and most of the time blaming myself for taking those drugs. I couldn’t believe that those pills were capable of taking me hostage in my own body for a very short period of time since I started taking them.
One day I was in the office attending a meeting, I thought I was loosing my mind. I was hyperventilating, my brain was aching, and my body was in tremor and in excruciating pain. I ran to the bathroom and I soaked my head with water to alleviate the pain. I was relieved for a moment then it came again. It went on and on and getting worst everyday. Then one crazy day, I stopped taking any medication in hope that the symptoms will go away. I was wide-awake for several days counting the seconds and minutes. I could hear the ticking of my wall clock the entire time. I had a weak body, foggy mind, tremors in my muscles, and my sanity was fading. My wife didn’t know how to help me. It was extremely devastating to her, too. I took my pills back but I gained no solace. I was a full- blown train wreck.
I knew I had to do something about the situation and I need to do it quickly because doom was coming in too fast. I analyzed my situation and contemplated on how to deal with it head-on. I realized, I need to tackle 4 areas in my life that would help my current condition, my health condition, my thought process, my sleep (or lack of it) and my spirituality. I started to eat healthy and natural food with lots of vegetables and lean protein. Then I enrolled to a fitness gym to get a daily light work out. I saw some improvements especially after the work out. hey say it’s because the body releases endorphins after the exercise. At that stage, I take any form of relief, even for just a few minutes. I also attended a Christian Life Program about this time. It was my wife who convinced me to attend. This Christian renewal 8-weekend program has helped me regain my spiritual footing and self-confidence. But that was not enough because I still need to work out my anxiety and thought processes. I bought this popular attacking anxiety and depression program from the Internet. I learned a lot about this program and it yielded a very good result towards my healing. There was a tremendous improvement since I started my all-out combat against the pills. Weeks later, I planned to start tapering my meds all by myself so I searched the internet if there was anything out there that can help. I found the Ashton taper method but it was vaguely explained. I need something to ease the body pain. The next day, I searched the internet again and this time I found a website that explains how to taper properly with supplements to help the symptoms and there was a lot of Testimonial, too. I immediately called out the number and somebody on the line answered, she was Andrea, one of the sweetest voices I heard over the phone. I almost cried when she offered me a solution to my problem. My prayers have finally been answered. And yes….it was the Point of Return office still taking phone calls even after office hours or maybe I was just lucky that day.
The reason you’re reading this Testimonial is because I made it clean. I am still healing and having a wonderful time with my beautiful wife and two teenage daughters. Today is our 14th wedding anniversary and this is a wonderful gift to us. This entire experience is life changing for the better.
The last piece of my 4-piece puzzle was answered by the Point of Return program. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Andrea, Alesandra and Terry for a job well done. God bless your hearts. Special thanks also to Rachel and Wendy and the forum friends who were there with me all the way. It was like a family in the forum, no one is a stranger. You guys are awesome!!!!!
Gilbert M. (TEXAS) Temazepam, Trazodone
About 14 years ago, I started on my journey with an introduction to antidepressants. I had been in a fairly good marriage for almost 20 years. We had 3 sons (my former husband had maintained that the most important part of life was family). But in 1990 he left us and finally 6 years later remarried. That's when I "fell apart," and my family doctor started me on Zoloft. Two years later I stopped the med because I had gained 40 lbs (was not overweight at all before), and began to have severe hot flashes. Fortunately, they were relieved with natural hormone creams. I did in time remarry a very nice widower with 2 grown daughters, and we have a lovely granddaughter who is 5-1/2.
Then in 2000, stress at work skyrocketed, so I began Effexor 75mg. I had lost some weight before this, but gradually it came back and with it a feeling of complacency, and something new-- a desire to spend money - not gamble, but I wanted more clothes, shoes, etc.Fluctuating weight didn't help. I tried for 3+ years to stop Effexor, with my doctor's help, but couldn't. The brain zaps and imbalance were too much. So I continued on. Then in 2005, with added work stress, and work related injuries due to increased computer use, carrying a laptop (I worked as a case Manager in Community health care) my dose was increased to 112.5 mg. In the meantime I had various meds for neuropathic pain-pinched nerve in my neck that caused pain right down to my hands - Gabapentin,Tylenol #2, then Tylenol #3. I was also on Nexium for acid reflux. By the fall of 2007, I decided to retire, and start to look after my health. I started my taper from Effexor in late Oct 2007 with the help of a Naturopath, then retired Dec 31/07, and in January reached 37.5 mg with no difficulties. But I suddenly was stuck. The brain zaps, imbalance issues began when I tried to omit a day. My own doctor suggested omitting a dose every other day.
That's when I "accidentally" came across POR with my own brand new laptop! I had been praying for a solution, and God was listening! I called through with a little apprehension as I wasn't sure about finding groups, etc on the Internet, but then I spoke to the most wonderful person ever-Alesandra. I sensed her caring immediately! She listened carefully, discussed how I could safely taper the Effexor by compounding, explained the POR programme, and suggested I think about it. I did, but not for long. The next day I ordered the supplements, Alesandra's book too. Like so many, I read her book, and could not put it down. I cried and cried. This was the beginning of a successful but very gradual taper which I completed Aug 22/08.I took longer because I had a fear of those horrible brain zaps. I followed the programme carefully until mid Sept.08 when I thought I would be ok, and stopped it. This was a major mistake on my part.
Our family went through two deaths (older members) that Sept, and in early Oct I noticed a ringing in my ears. By Dec it was horrible, made worse with an ear/sinus infection, and suddenly lack of sleep and panic attacks began. On Dec 23, my family doctor started me on Clonazepam.5mg BID. It helped for a time with sleep and decreasing the volume of the ringing, but little did I realize the path I was now on. I did get down to .5mg at bedtime by mid March, and was stuck. Finally I reconnected with Alesandra - she was so kind as usual, and oh so understanding. Then by late June, I decided I had to start to get off this horrible med, and a younger family doctor was helping me and started guiding me on the tapering. This time I was making NO mistakes. I started back on the POR supplements and have followed the programme very carefully. Occasionally I have made the odd small error with food, and I must admit, it shocks me when I realize even a very small change in diet can effect me.
I can't begin to thank Alesandra enough - she is always right here, answering my emails, phone calls, telling me I will make it. And of course Terry and Andrea are just incredible too - making sure my orders get through, especially when I order last minute--forgive me - will try not to keep doing that!
During the late 1990s, I managed to develop heartburn/acid reflux issues, and went through a series of meds - Zantac, Losec, and finally Nexium.The latter I took for almost 6 years until Alesandra spoke to me about its many negative side effects last May. I was aware of the potential for osteoporosis, and because I already have osteoarthritis, agreed to stop it. I managed fairly well with minimal heartburn problems until about 6 weeks ago. I've been so careful with my diet due to the tapering, and also tinnitus, but something set things off, and after a week of abdominal pains, nausea, poor appetite, severe heartburn, my family doctor convinced me to trial Nexium once again. I had an endoscopy last Nov which showed oesophagitis, so of course the fear of cancer in the future reared it's ugly head. Three days into the Nexium, and my tinnitus was almost unbearable (and it had been getting much better-weaker), plus I started to get very anxious. Suddenly I was on the phone to Alesandra, crying a"basket case." This loving angel had me calmed down in no time, reassuring me I would be ok, and not to feel badly that I had started back this PPI. As we talked, Alesandra checked --sure enough-- tinnitus is a side effect, and so is anxiety. But Alesandra did not stop there - she looked into options and came up with Active Manuka Honey. I stopped the Nexium immediately, and fortunately found the honey locally the next day. It continues to give me relief, and I can also take our Canadian Gaviscon as it does not have aluminum. Of course I watch my diet too. Both the tinnitus and anxiety calmed down within a day!
I should also mention my pain issues that were severe when I was working,have improved immensely, mostly due to the POR supplements,and a little from retiring-not lugging a laptop everywhere,etc.I rarely take anything now,and if so only a regular Advil.
I successfully completed the Clonazepam taper Dec 20/09, the day before my birthday, and it was such a neat present. I did think I would just sail through after, but have experienced a few glitches (not serious), but each day gets better and better. And I am so grateful for this most wonderful programme, for my prayers being answered, for Alesandra, Terry, and Andrea. They are a blessing to all, and such a unique trio. Where would any of us be without them? And then meeting so many super nice people on the Forum, for the sharing of our various struggles and triumphs, and I must not forget, for both Wendy and Rachel--2 special angels who offer their love and support to all of us. And as I continue my journey of healing, my goal is to reach out to others to help them get off such terrible meds by directing them to this phenomenal programme! I will be forever indebted to POR.
Kathy R. (CANADA) Clonazepam
My terrifying journey down the prescription drug path started with Ambien, moved onto Ativan, and stopped with Klonopin. I was having severe pain issues in my jaw, neck, and shoulders due to a stressful work environment to such a degree that I could not sleep or get out of bed. Because I wanted to muscle myself through the pain and continue to work, I started taking Ativan which was the biggest mistake of my life. I decided to cold turkey the medication after it caused more pain in my neck and shoulder areas, pain and tension that it promised to erase.
After being off the medication for nearly a month, I had nearly lost hope because I could not even walk around the block as the pain was so intense. The Lord really saved me one day when I was panicking in bed as to my current state. My dad called me and told me he found an organization online that might help heal me. I called and left a message. Alesandra promptly called me back and talked to me for over an hour, reassuring me that all would improve. Alesandra was so kind and the care and concern for me really touched my heart. After the call, I had hope that God was leading me to healing and He was.
I decided to reinstate on a long acting benzo, Klonopin, because I could not function after cold turkeying. Throughout this Klonopin taper, Alesandra was just an angel and always answered every email (sorry Alesandra for harassing you!) and every call. She gave me so much encouragement and compassion throughout the process during times that were so trying that I did not know if I could make it. I know now that God sent her specially to help me on this journey and I am so very thankful for her. She and all the people at Point of Return genuinely cared about me and rooted me on during the most difficult time of my life.
I really appreciate all the support with nutrition and the amazing supplements. Support is still and always will be a mainstay as well as the Sleep and Mood. I believe that I will always use these products so as not to allow my health to degrade ever again. I have learned a new lifestyle through POR and that through proper diet, faith in God, and supplementation, I should never get to such an unhealthy state again.
I am still dealing with sleep issues and jaw pain, though I am getting to the root of these issues. Even so, Alesandra, Terry, and Andrea still encourage me and answer any question. I am so so very thankful for Alesandra who bestowed so much love and care on me. She is truly an inspiration and her heart is no doubt one of pure gold. I cannot wait one day to visit all the folks at POR and give them huge hugs. There is no way I can repay them for all they have done for me. I will forever thank God for Alesandra, the lovely lady He sent to walk with me during the most difficult time in my life.
Thanks so much, Alesandra. You have been so amazing through this process. I am forever grateful for you.
With much love and THANK YOU,
Sylvia R. (CALIFORNIA) - Ativan
I was on benzo's for 7 years and had tried to stop several times over that span with no luck. Each and every time I tried to stop, the withdrawals were so severe and impacted my life so much that I had to continue on with my benzo trip. A trip that I thought was never going to end. That was until I came across the POINT OF RETURN website and the great program. Being on the program has changed my life and I would strongly recommend this program to all. The staff is extremely caring and approach everyday with love for their job and for the clients on the program. I am extremely grateful for having the program in my life.
Scott K. (VIRGINIA) Klonopin
I started Ambien about 6 years ago due to high-pressure job anxiety that woke me up around 3:00 a.m. every morning thing about work. Asked my doctor what I could do, and was introduced to Ambien. I thought I found miracle drug. I had never slept so good, and immediately went to daily dosage of 2.5mg which I thought was safe and small. Doctor told me no worries, he's got patients on 50 mg and they are doing just fine… Every year or so after that, the dosage needed to be increased. Well ok, I still have a long way to go to get to 50 mg.
After about 4 years, I started to realize these may not be working as good as they started out… I started taking mental steps to go cold turkey. Doctor said no problem. This was after they tried to put me on Trazodon, Halcion or anything else that I may have preferred. Thanks to the internet I could see how dangerous these drugs really were. We had planned our vacation time around my withdrawal just to be safe. Based on what my doctor was telling me, I should experience no more than minor discomfort.
Ambien bet me to the punch and stopped working before I had a chance to prepare. It turned my whole world upside down. Coincidentally, I had a complete physical right around the same time and was considered in perfect health. The first thing to happen outside of no sleep, was anxiety attacks followed by blood pressure issues so bad I thought I was going to have a heart attack. Then my blood sugar went over 200 pretty much every time I ate, and I had no ability to concentrate or focus. A mental meltdown that is very difficult to describe. I was instantly handicapped and not feeling healthy. What was happening to me? The doctors had no advice other than additional drug options.
My wife hooked me up with an acupuncturist here in town. She had a PhD in Internal Chinese Medicine with over 30 years experience. I had over 20 visits, which I really enjoyed, but no step down from Ambien was in sight and there was no clue when I might see the end of the tunnel. I was given Chinese herbs and some pills I could not pronounce, and I thought I may be on my way to a slow recovery. Little did I know that these herbs were slowly compounding my problem. My mental anguish increased and I was getting desperate.
A client I have known for many years suggested I try Klonopin, because it was his miracle drug. Reading about this drug was even scarier than the last. In checking it out I accidentally discovered "Point of Return." Discovering this website and seeing the Testimonials of people in similar pain literally brought tears to my eyes. I called and spoke with Alesandra, received the starter package and within 24 hours and was on my journey to recovery. I was skeptical at first, wondering who these people were that gave so freely of themselves. I quickly discovered that everything they did and said was for real. The supplements worked just like they said they would, and if I had any doubts, they were always there for me, providing encouragement.
Ambien did its job while it was working, and then it turned into a nightmare pretty much overnight, affecting my family, job, social life and my mental stability. For a while I thought I was losing my mind and on my way to insanity. The experience was Horrific and I am so very grateful that Point of Return was there for me. I am now drug free! I sleep better than ever, and I am back as good as new, with a few extra miles.
- Alex B. (CALIFORNIA) Ambien
I want to take a few moments to tell my story, and to especially acknowledge and thank the great team at POINT OF RETURN (POR)!!!
I have lived a fairly normal life for over 60 years, with very little knowledge or involvement with mind altering prescription drugs. However, last year that all changed and I have found myself living in a nightmare that has been an unbelievable life threatening journey.
My nightmare with hypnotic type drugs all started with a fall on ice and a broken ankle in Jan /08. Then six months later I was diagnosed with two 100% blocked arteries and a need for open heart surgery immediately. When I look back I realize how hard I have been hit with many drugs, and some of them I thank God for because of the pain I would have never been able to bear without them.
However, when I arrived home from the hospital after my open heart surgery, I couldn't sleep for three nights, which was actually a normal reaction to such an intense trauma to our bodies. Because of fear, I placed a call to my doctor and he consequently sent me a script for Ativan to "help me". The drug did have a printout of warnings but I felt so fearful and desperate to sleep that I immediately began to take the Ativan. I was very ignorant and naive as to the side effects of this monster drug. The drug helped me to sleep at first, but within weeks I hit a wall and started to have very strange symptoms and difficulty sleeping "again". I became very sick to say the least, and felt despair many times.
In my desperation I began to search the internet for answers as I prayed that God would spare my life and lead me out of the web I was now caught up in. As you will see, He has heard my prayers by leading me to POINT OF RETURN!!
One night I was feeling quite alone and a sense of panic was hovering over me when I found a website called 'point of return' with, of all things, an '800' toll free number. It was around 8pm here in Ontario Canada but in desperation I dialed the 800 number and Andrea answered. I later realized that it was 5pm in California and Andrea was still in the office selflessly helping others, as usual. She was able to help and comfort me at the end of her already long day and she immediately began to research some of my panicky type questions on line as we spoke. Within 24 hrs I had my first order of supplements at my door. In spite of my skeptical and very reluctant doctor I was able to find a compounding pharmacy in Toronto Canada and started my taper as soon as I was up to the correct supplement level. I stuck very close to the program, and still do to this day.
It has been a very scary journey to say the least, but I have been Ativan free for over six months now and still continue to heal. I have 2 close friends that went cold turkey from Ativan and both of them had seizures in the beginning. Thanks to POINT OF RETURN and the supplements that did not happen to me.
There is so much that could be said about my ongoing battle with CNS problems and continuing sleep issues and I know that Andrea and Terry have heard most of them and have been so sensitive to my plight. I do not believe that what the POR team does is a job or even a career choice, but rather a calling from a merciful God who desires to help those caught up in this prescription drug trap. Being moved with compassion for hurting humanity they have obeyed this heavenly calling. Andrea, Terry and Alesandra have helped me with advice and a listening ear so often that I can never thank them enough for bearing with me in my times of horror!!!! The scriptures teach us that it is more blessed to give than to receive, and right now their team is experiencing that truth about life. It has always seemed so incredible to me that some times in my deepest despair Andrea has so often picked up the phone at the second or third ring and has never put me off and after a sometimes very long, even tearful conversation, I have always hung up the phone with a new encouragement and strength to go on in the battle. She is a store house of solid information that many doctors, making outrageous money could never answer or even take the time to care about, this incredible problem of our day.
POINT OF RETURN. is the real deal for sure, and so are the supplements, they have been well researched and I would recommend them to anyone with a dependency to prescription drugs. Maybe one day I will be able to pay them back in some small way for all they have done for me!!!
Very highest regards to the POR team!
Dennis L. (Canada) - Ativan
Hi, my name is Graham, from Ireland, and I've struggled with depression for many years. I have spent time in different countries around Europe, the Middle East and Africa and had occassion to visit doctors in all 4 countries, with the result of having many different drugs prescribed over the past 15 years (Prozac, Xanax, Mirtazipine, Fluoxetine and others I forget!). I eventually was put on Zispin (Mirtazipine) for the past 4 years and was told I could never and should never come off them. However, over the past years I noticed and grew to be concerned over many of the side effects, also the doctor wanted me to come off 'for a break' as my white blood cell count went too low. So, in June of this year my GP prescribed strange way to taper and it did not suit my body and mind, so I thought it right to go back on the main dose...but before I did, I found Point of Return on the internet and wrote to Alessandra telling her of my concerns about tapering. She promptly and kindly emailed me her thoughts/experiences on the matter and I just couldn't bring myself to take the step and commit to a proper taper schedule. It was fear that was holding me back. Fear of failure, fear I couldn't function without my drugs, fear the depression would return...fear is a terrible thing, it holds so many people back from becoming the person they really are. I eventually took the plunge and have successfully tapered off Zispin and during taper I experienced very little symptoms/side effects. It was NO WAY as scary a process as I had built myself up to 'fear'. I'm delighted to have come off the medication and have felt much better as a result...clarity of thought, memory function and generally feeling 'normal' at last...after so many years. I hope this will help you make a more informed decision - take the risk...it's well worth it!
I wish you well...
Graham W. (Ireland) - Zispin (Remeron)
I still can't believe it. After 15 years I am finally med free thanks to the POR team!!!!! I was put on Paxil when I was 15 years old due to anxiety attacks. Instead of pointing me towards talk therapy, my doctor had me believe the infamous "chemical imbalance" theory and that I would have to be on a SSRI for the remainder of my life. I completely bought into his explanation and even preached how great Paxil was, as it seemed to be such a magic drug at first. However, every few years my anxiety would come back and my doctor would increase my dosage. This continued for over 13 years until the day I bumped my dosage up to 40mgs and my body reacted badly (horrible restlessness and increased anxiety). I dropped back down to 30mgs and that is what started my withdrawal journey.
The doctors tried rapidly take me off Paxil (which of course didn't work) as well as introduce other SSRIs (just made things worse). After finally doing my own research and realizing I was experiencing SSRI withdrawal, I decided to go back on 40mgs of Paxil and slowly taper off the drug. So off I went, struggling everyday with the horrible symptoms that withdrawal can cause. And believe me, I have experienced every single symptom that people have complained about during my journey. After a year I was able to get down to 10mgs and I hit a brick wall. I became very desperate for relief and didn't think I could follow through with the remainder of my taper. Would I have to go back to upping my dosage back to 40mgs of Paxil? Should I keep trying to find another SSRI that may help? How about adding a benzo to ease my discomfort?
Just when I was going to throw in the towel, I found the Point of Return website. I picked up the phone and spoke to Andrea. She ensured me that I could get off Paxil and give your body time to heal from the damage (I like to say changes) that SSRIs cause. I ordered up the program and 8 months later I was Paxil free!!!
I would like to thank everyone at the POR office for helping me through this horrible time of my life, especially Andrea (you were always there when I had a question or needed support). The POR nutrients are the real deal and they work. I just wished I would have found them two years sooner!
Dan C. (Canada) - Paxil
I'm so sorry I took so long to get this testimonial to you. Three years ago God led me to POINT OF RETURN. I was in pretty bad shape. I was suffering with a Stress and Anxiety disorder. My nightmare started in 2003 when my doctor placed me on Paxil. I was on Paxil for about a year and told the doctor that I had lost my drive. We had a six year old son at the time and we were thinking about having another child. My doctor then placed me on Prozac. Prozac kept me up at night, so I started taking Celexa. Oh boy, I was on the prescription drug ride of my life! Then came Effexor, Remeron, Seroquel. I gained sixty eight pounds taking Seroquel. Through this barrage of drugs I was given Ativan. I would take a .5 mg's pill two or three times a month, nothing addictive yet. When I stopped taking Seroquel, I started taking Ativan more frequently and before I knew it, I was taking 1mg pills four or five times a day. I was hooked and headed down a bad road. My dependency was so bad I would count my pills when the prescription was filled. I knew something was wrong with me when I stayed up all night and sleep apnea begins to creep in. I started becoming really depressed and my blood pressure started to rise. I knew things had to change, so I started researching the effects of Ativan and what I needed to do to make it through the withdrawal process. I told my doctor I wanted off Ativan. He told me he wanted to wean me off the medication. His so called taper program would probably have killed me. I really started to focus (what focus I had) on my research and I found POINT OF RETURN. From the minute I spoke with Terry, I was hooked on their program. I followed the program to the letter. I ended up reducing a bit quicker than I was suppose to, but Terry was there for me and the process began. I know in my heart if it were not for Alesandra, Andrea, and Terry, I would probably not be alive today. They would greet me with their assuring voices every time I called. Their voices were like medicine to me. I have been drug free for three years now and my life seems so much more fulfilled. Thanks so much Alesandra, Andrea, and Terry. You are, and will always be my saving angels!
Mark M. (CALIFORNIA) Ativan
Wow, it is hard to know where to start. Let me try! It has been quite a long road, but well worth it. I should probably start at the beginning. I believe it was in 2006 when I started having some issues with anxiety. My doctor put me on Prozac and Klonopin as a result. After about one year on the meds, I decided that I wanted to stop taking them. I spoke to the doctor and he was in favor of reducing the dose but did not support me stopping. I tapered off them fully outside of his advice and within a few months, I was having issues with anxiety again. He was furious with me for not listening, so I agreed to go back on the medication. His explanation of the relapse was that I just needed to be on medication and that was why I was having reoccurring issues. He never spoke of the possibility of withdrawal, even when I brought it up. After being back on them for quite a few months, I was not satisfied. I just didn't feel that this path was what I needed to do. I really didn't know what to do!
After some intense prayer and searching, I found the POR website. I read the information on the site and it immediately clicked that I was much like those on the website. I had made two attempts in the past to come off the meds and was not successful. I was hesitant that there might be a solution for getting off the meds. My doctor was frustrated with me and tried to convince me that I had a chemical imbalance and there was nothing I could do about it except take medication. The doctor made me feel so helpless. During this time, I felt so distant from the Lord and so focused on myself. I did not realize how inwardly I was focused until recently. I now realize that He was there the entire time.
I emailed the POR website and got an answer back almost immediately. As a matter of fact, I believe it was a phone call from Alesandra. I went back and forth for a few weeks concerning the decision to start the program before I finally placed the first order. I prayed so much and wanted to make sure it was the Lord's will for me to do. I was scared, but also encouraged that I had a potential solution. I must have emailed Alesandra two or three times a day for months after starting the program. I was constantly checking with her on every twitch, ache, and feeling that I had. She graciously helped me through it all. I admire her patience and care and believe that she has a gift to help people.
I tapered the Klonopin first and then the Prozac. Over the course of approximately one year, I was free from both medications. I have to admit, I did not always follow the protocol of the program. For that, I did have some set backs. That typically resulted in frantic emails to Alesandra looking for what to do. Almost every time, I had missed some of the supplements or done something not recommended by the program. I also was lacking faith.
My advice to everyone reading is to follow the program exactly. Do not try to make your own version or modify it without consulting with the people at POR who know. I had such a desire to feel better, but frequently went my own way. Believe me, save yourself some hardship and stay on the path that has been established.
Also, have confidence that there is a way out. Through my trial, I found the true faith I should have always had.
I need to take time to acknowledge Alesandra, who was always there when I needed support. I have emailed late nights, weekends, and other times and always got a quick response. Believe me, I was very needy! Alesandra, thank you truly, from the bottom of my heart. It is no doubt that God has you in the place where He wants you. You have put so much of yourself into helping me when there was nothing in it for you but seeing me succeed. I praise God that He worked through you to help me and all those who struggle with getting off the medications.
I also thank God for answering my prayers to find answers and for strengthening my faith. Our trials are designed to help us seek Him, not ourselves. That is still something I have to remind myself.
I also need to thank the whole POR staff, including Terry and Andrea. I called many times looking for help and always got an uplifting word or laugh.
For those currently struggling, try the program. Give the POR team a call or email.
Also, find faith to help you through. If you are a Christian, cling to Jesus!
Eric A. (New Hampshire) Prozac, Klonopin
My experience with Point of Return is one of connecting with people (Alesandra, Teri and Andrea) who are caring , loving, and knowledgeable about the process of withdrawing from benzodizapines. The one on one support and nutritional products that I received from Point of Return gave me the fatih and strength that I needed to move through the process of withdrawal and recovery. Point of Return's up to date knowledge about the interactions of the drug with wahtever I was inclined to ingest saved me many times from taking something that would only intenseify my withdrawal sympotoms. I am deeply grateful for the support and reassurace that I have received and continue to receive from the staff at Point of Return.
Mary Ann T. (California) Ativan
Thirty years ago may have been the beginning of a down-hill spiral for me when I was put on antidepressants for a persistent nerve pain in my arms and hands. Amazingly they did stop the pain and because of my trust in our medical Dr./friend I thought I'd need this drug for rest of my life to correct the diagnosed chemical imbalance.
While on the Amipramine I had mood swings, dry mouth and a nightly three hour ritual of twitching and jerking. It was the end of the blissful deep sleep I had once known. Relocating to another state meant changing to another doctor and then another and another as I became discouraged with their inability to make me feel better. The first and only effort ever made with each new doctor was to change my antidepressant. I even had the degrading experience of a homeopathic Dr. tell me there wasn't anything more they could to for me. "O.K. what is wrong with me? I don't feel well. Am I going to wither up and die for no reason at all? Oh, yes, I have Fibromyalgia. It's causing the tiredness, muscle pain, acid reflux and sleep disorder.
Oh, thank goodness. My joins are wearing out. Now there is a real reason for the pain. The five joint replacements have been helpful but the diseased spine is still hard to deal with. The spinal injections haven't helped so I really don't know what to do next. Suffer and live with it I suppose. At this rate I may not want to see 70.
Five children and their spouses, fourteen grand children all live a thousand miles away and seldom come to visit. They are too busy with their own lives so I am doomed to die lonely in some facility because my husband won't be able to care for me as my mental and physical health diminish. They will keep me calm and quiet for a few years until I slip away."
GOD BLESS MY DAUGHTER, BARBIE, who so tenderly and cautiously questioned me about my antidepressants. "Mom, I have a friend who was really sick and taking several drugs but now she is off of them and she has a whole new life." "But I still have the pain and the Dr. said I have a chemical imbalance.
I can't hardly ride in the car because the vibrations hurts me so bad. Dad does all of the housework and shopping." "Would you mind if my friend e-mailed or called you? "No, I don't' mind. I can listen or not listen."
That was the beginning of my journey to healing with POINT OF RETURN and my, now dear and precious, friend Alesandra. It has been one year this month of September since I began the program and today I am free of drugs. Free from Xanax which was causing me more Anxiety, Tramadol that caused more pain, Mirtazapine and Effexor. Even my stomach is healing and I have stopped the purple pill.
It hasn't been a bed or roses. It was hardest on my dear husband of 48 years. He is a saint you know. We are acting silly again just as we did years ago and we are still very much in love at the age of 66 and 70.
We hope to shorten the miles between us and our family by traveling more frequently. We have been blessed with a Great Granddaughter and we have yet to see and spoil her just a little. We just returned from Arizona where we reunited with two friends we had not seen or heard from in thirty years.
My grandchildren thought it was amazing to see photos of me (grandma) on a recent camping trip, standing up to the waist in a stream of water and fly fishing for trout. I'm a tough cookie sometimes and stubborn (they say) but I didn't know what a fighter I was until now that I look back on this past year and
realize that I never once thought about quitting the program.
Could it have something to do with Alesandra Rain, the program itself, the prayers I didn't know about. Yes, all of the above and more. I am dead set against the misuse of drugs and have always made a strong and lasting impression upon our children pertaining to them. For me to think that I was addicted to prescriptions drugs never entered my mind and would have horrified me.
Pain is no stranger to me so I am more compassionate to those who suffer than I use to be. I want to say clearly that I don't believe a laboratory cocktail of chemicals, compressed into a tiny pill, are natural to the human body and they are definitely not the answer to a healthy mind and body.
Laura S., (Colorado) Xanax, Mirtazapine, Effexor, Tramadol
I cannot clearly recall how I came across POINT OF RETURN; but I am certainly grateful that I did, because it was most definitely my point of return – to sanity. I was diagnosed with depression shortly after my mother passed away over 20 years ago. I was depressed all right…of that there is no doubt; however, I now know that I should have been given other ways of coping besides being prescribed drugs. At the time of my mother's death, I was a single mother and she was the only real support system I had. I was probably a bit too close to my mom and consequently, I took her death pretty hard. I left a job of 8 years and moved away from the city I was living in at that time, which is definitely not something I should have done. Nevertheless, following my doctor's advice, I went about changing a few things in my life, and took the antidepressants prescribed. Over the years, I was given an assortment of antidepressants; Desipramine, Prozac a couple others thrown in for good measure (the names of which I can't remember now) and finally the doctors settled on Effexor. It was never recommended that I seek any kind of grief counseling nor was I told how harmful making major decisions in my life could be…but…thank God; it is all behind me now.
After a few years of taking antidepressants, I started to question my doctor about why I couldn't come off them because in fact, it had been so many years. I was repeatedly told not to worry about it – they were not addictive – and I just needed to accept that I was one of those people that have a brain chemistry that doesn't properly supply the serotonin levels I need to live a normal life. If I were a diabetic, I was asked, would I not take insulin?
About 3 years ago, I went away on a long weekend shopping trip with a girlfriend and I accidentally forgot my Effexor at home. I didn't think that much of it until near the end of the second day. I couldn't focus on anything; I had a pounding headache and ringing in my ears; I felt like I had vertigo. It was the most awful experience I'd had since I couldn't remember when. Everything was just spinning. I didn't equate the feelings I was experiencing to any kind of withdrawal until I went to a clinic on the 3rd day because I knew I wasn't going to be able to drive and I had to get home. It was then that I was told that my body was reacting to not having the Effexor. It was a very frightening experience and I knew that I wanted to be drug free from that point on. I tried on a couple of occasions to wean myself off of the effexor to no avail. I started to seek out information about antidepressants and withdrawal symptoms and I started to read a great deal of information on cognitive therapy for depression as well as potential alternatives to prescription drugs. I guess I stumbled across the POR site during this research stage and decided to ask a few questions about how the program worked.
I kept going back to the POINT OF RETURN site and read the information over and over again and I finally mustered up the courage to contact them. It was a Saturday or Sunday evening that I sent an email and I just about fell out of my chair when Alesandra responded within the hour! I was impressed! I kept in touch with Alesandra by email for a couple of days back and forth and it was obvious that she knew exactly what she was talking about and she quickly gained my trust and respect. I ordered the withdrawal system and anxiously awaited its arrival. The day I received the package, I read Alesandra's book, "Deeds of Trust" in one sitting. I was amazed by what she had been through and knew in my heart that if she could survive that kind of pain and anguish, I could certainly work through my 'stuff'. I slowly started taking the nutrients, as recommended, and picked up the Natren probiotics. I built up my courage and made an appointment with my doctor to let him know that I wanted to go on the POR program. I was very worried that he wouldn't accept my request because of my attempts to get off of antidepressants previously, but I kept in contact with the POR forum and got a script in my head so I could tackle any questions he might have. I read through the POINT OF RETURN doctor's information booklet provided as well and had highlighted certain areas of the book that I thought would quickly convince him that their system was based on sound research. He kept the booklet with him and told me to re-book another appointment while he went through its contents and thought about my request. In between this initial appointment and the follow up; I was taking the POR nutrients & probiotics. I also picked up some excellent Omega 3 oil (vegetarian brand as I am allergic to any seafood/shellfish) and sought out a compounding pharmacist in my area.
I was pleasantly surprised when I had my next doctor's visit. He not only said he would allow me to do the program; but he also asked if he could share the information I provided him with, amongst his colleagues. So…off I went…prescription in hand.
I followed the POINT OF RETURN program religiously and stayed on the private forum (mostly reading at first) to keep focused. Alesandra would speak with me one on one via email when I had some struggles through the titration and as usual, she was my faithful angel. I know that I will still have days (and nights) where I feel sadness creep up on me…but I also know that I will have days of joy and peace that I could never have had on the anti-depressant medications. I felt flat. Life had no pizzazz! I have tears now and then; but I know now how to cope. I pamper myself with a bubble bath, read a good book, watch a comedy or a romantic love story and of course, keep myself well-stocked with SUPPORT.
My heartfelt thanks to all of the POINT OF RETURN team – the group of participants that provide emotional support on the forum – and most of all – to Alesandra.
Kellia A. (Canada) Effexor
My journey started 7 years ago when I started having severe sleeping problems. I started taking Tylenol PM, graduated to Benadryl, and after that didn't work, I then went to the Doctor. He prescribed Sonata, which gave me horrific nightmares, then we tried a few more that made me vomit, and finally, we settled on Restoril. I was on 7.5 mg of Restoril for a few years, and after a traumatic experience in my life, the Restoril stopped working. I can remember the Restoril was working on and off during that last year, so I really wasn't getting restful sleep then, either. Well, after the life-threatening event that I went through, I went to the Doctor again, and told him the Restoril wasn't working. When I refused to go on Antidepressants, he sent me to a neurologist, whose main specialty was Sleep Disorders. It took a few weeks to get in and during that time, I had to go to the Emergency room because of a 14 day period of no sleep. My body just went crazy, not to mention my mind. After they gave me an IV of Valium, I went home and slept that night, but the problem was still there. I continued on the same path of getting no sleep.
I had acupuncture, hypnotist, chiropractors, therapist, naturopathic Doctors and any other type of Doctor you name, try to figure me out. After I finally got into the neurologist, we did a sleep study and it was determined that I had Insomnia…… Wow, What a revelation!!!!!! The neurologist put me on Klonopin. At that point, I said okay, because I was desperate and knew nothing about the drug. After being on the drug about 2 months, I questioned him about not feeling like myself and not liking how I felt and he said "You are not yourself and you have to stay on the Klonopin". That remark gave me no comfort. I stayed on it as he directed, but my soul was fighting it all the way. It gave me sleep for a while, and then quit working. After a year and ½ of being on it, I went back to the Doctor and again expressed my concerns and he said, "If you get off that medication, don't come back to my office". I then said, well, how can I get off of it? And he said, just quit taking it tonight. Well, needless to say I never came back to that Doctor. I did a lot of research and found out that Klonopin is a hard drug to quit.
After a year of trying to get off of it and many research, I finally came across the POINT OF RETURN Program. What a Godsend! I started the supplement in Apri and within a few months, I was off the Klonopin. YES!!!!!!! I had a lot of support from Alesandra and the other staff members, which I cherish so deeply. It was so great to have a support system and other people going through the same thing I was. I still talk with Alesandra and enjoy her advice on other things. I know God had her go through her ordeal, so she could fulfill her purpose in this life. I am so grateful for her and the whole POR staff. I can't explain how thankful I am to be off that "monster" drug. After I got off of it, was when I realized how bad I actually was. I can't believe that I was such a different person. Even after a few days of being off of it, my feelings started coming back. I was numb and detached from my family the whole time I was on it. My personality had totally changed and I was just existing. Now, I see that my eyes were clouded for those years I was on it. I still have my struggles, but I am here to say that I am so ecstatic that I'm not on Klonopin and I never want to see that drug again. Taking care of my body and continuing with the nutrients has really helped me.
I know for certain, that God directed me to this program, and He gave me the grace to get through the whole withdrawal process, by providing me with his protection, their nutrients and support from POINT OF RETURN. Thank you so much for all your help……I will continue taking products because they help so much!
Jennifer D., (Florida) Klonopin
I was living a normal life. I had just started a new relationship after 4 years of divorce. My son (7) and daughter (14) were the center of my life. Then, I got sick….a simple sinus infection. I was prescribed an antibiotic and that's where it all went wrong. Within 4 days I was having extreme stomach pain, diarrhea, throwing up and extreme pain in my neck. I was sent to the ER for a test to rule out a blocked artery in my neck (it came back negative, but scared me to death). The MD then put me on Motrin 800, Protonix and Ativan .5mg when needed (the Ativan was to calm my stomach)…..that was the start of the biggest struggle I ever went through. I felt good for about 2 weeks then I started having problems with balance, eyesight, stomach, ringing in ears, depression, hot flashes, increased anxiety….I'm sure I left something out but let's just say, it was awful. I went back to the MD and he increased the Ativan to .5mg 3 times per day. This caused even more of the same symptoms. I made several trips to the ER. They tested me for everything….I was told I had a bacterial infection and was prescribed more antibiotics. This didn't help at all. I was slowly dwindling and couldn't take care of me, get to work, take care of my children. My Mom came to stay with me for a few weeks. That helped but the symptoms were worsening. Mom and my boyfriend said you need to get off all the stuff they have you on.…. I went back to the MD and told him I want off it all. He said it was not the Ativan and wanted to put me on Cymbalta. I refused and tried to taper on my own. That didn't work. It was too late.
I then found POR and started the program. Although I felt better….had ups and downs…..I was tapering too quickly. I ended up back at the ER. They suggested an outpatient program. I attended that for 8 weeks. I struggled going each day. They wanted me on several different types of meds. Each time I spoke to Alesandra. Each time I refused to take what they prescribed. My Mom came back to stay with me and my boyfriend was at my side every day. I couldn't sleep at all. I couldn't eat (lost 30 pounds in 2 months). The therapy did help. I think mostly because it got me out of the house and I started to research a lot about Ativan. I had to have 8 polyps removed (3 pre-cancerous) and I thought for sure that was causing it all. Wrong, it was still the Ativan. I took 4 weeks off at work and started the POR again and stuck to it. I got a compounding prescription and tapered each week. I had good days and bad days. I got through it though. I know when I was in deep depression, soaring with anxiety, feeling like I couldn't go on….I never thought I would be back to me again. I survived with the help of Alesandra, Andrea and Terry. Each time I made a mistake, they gave me direction on how to fix it. Thank God they had faith in me. I thank God everyday when I wake that I never have to live through that again. I am now almost 3 months free of Ativan. I spent this summer living a happy normal life. I feel better now then I did before this all happened to me. I will never/ever take anything again. It's a shame most people don't find POR until they are hooked on something horrible a MD told them would help.
Thanks to all that were there for me and helping me get through this adventure. I couldn't have done it without all of you. The forums were my life line. POR staff (big hugs) thank you for getting me back. My children, my boyfriend and family thank you.
Bev F., (Pennsylvania) Ativan
This dark chapter of my life began in 2004 when my mother's breast cancer returned and metastasized. It was a terminal illness which I refused to accept. I spent every day of her nine month battle crying and angry at God. During this time my doctor suggested that I take anti-depressants, but I would not hear of it because I was not going to do anything that would help me feel better when my mother was slipping away from me. After she passed away, I agreed to take Lexapro because my Dr. said that the depression that I was experiencing was a true medical condition and needed to be treated with medication just like any other medical condition would be treated. She said it was totally safe and non-addicting. It never crossed my mind to question her or doubt a word she said because after all, she was a professional. Initially, I felt so much better that I even encouraged my younger sister to take Lexapro since she too was feeling depressed.
As time passed, I began to feel many symptoms such as aches, tingling, and palpitations. When I mentioned this to my Dr., she suggested that I increase my dosage, but I refused. Throughout this time I saw several specialists because I was very worried about my symptoms, but no one ever found anything. It was very frustrating. None of the doctors ever considered a possible link between my symptoms and Lexapro, and neither did I. However, I was beginning to worry because if I missed a dose, I would get awful brain zaps. I didn't know what this strange feeling was and I couldn't even describe it to my doctor.
This was when I began to worry that I was becoming dependent on this drug, but when I asked the doctor about long-term effects she would simply reiterate that it was absolutely safe to take these drugs for life. So I began to get used to the idea that my symptoms were caused by my depression, not the medicine, and that I was going to have to take this drug for the rest of my life.
I later began to experience uncontrollable twitching all over my body and decided to see a different doctor hoping that maybe this person would finally pinpoint what was causing these strange symptoms. I was also embarrassed and afraid to go to my Dr. with more symptoms because I thought surely this time she would just call me a hypochondriac. Much to my dismay, the new doctor did not show much concern about my twitches, but was outraged that my Dr. had kept me on Lexapro for four years. He said that anti-depressants should only be used temporarily and he asked me to stop cold-turkey. I immediately expressed my fear about doing this, but he asked me to trust him. He was actually a bit harsh and used the analogy of a child walking around dragging his blanket and sucking his thumb to describe what I was doing by taking Lexapro. I left his office astounded that two Dr.'s could have a completely different view about the same medication but, in my desperation to be free from all my strange symptoms I decided to trust yet another doctor.
On the seventh day after I stopped taking Lexapro, I experienced terrible withdrawal symptoms. I was wailing, shaking uncontrollably, and very nauseated. My husband yelled at me to just take the medicine while my three girls watched frightfully from a distance not understanding what was happening. This was when the harsh and scary reality struck me. I was addicted to this prescription drug and without it I could not function, but I had my three girls to take care of, I was working on my master's degree, and was the teacher of 23 first graders so, I got back on Lexapro. A few minutes after I took this drug, my symptoms began to vanish, but then I began to burn up inside from the immense anger I was feeling against the medical community for inadvertently causing such harm to their patients.
I wrote a letter to the FDA informing them of my situation and expressing my concerns. I received an acknowledgment of my letter, but nothing else. I realized that just the way a cocaine addict needed help to be freed from his addiction; I too needed professional help. I prayed to the Lord for mercy and guidance and began a search on the internet. I found that I was not the only one who was experiencing this dependency. This gave me a sense of relief, but also much disappointment in the medical community.
I found an organization that sounded very encouraging so I explored their website, but found their plan to be a bit complicated. Regardless of this apparent complication they were a light at the end of the tunnel so I sent an e-mail. Someone attempted to contact me, but for a while we seemed to be playing phone tag. We just couldn't get in touch.
It was then that I found POINT OF RETURN. Unlike the other place, after I submitted my e-mail, I was speaking to someone in a matter of minutes, and when I talked to Alesandra, I felt an immediate sense of relief that someone understood exactly what was happening to me. I was no longer alone in my crazy battle with this drug! I will be honest and say that I was a bit skeptical and feared that I would be throwing my money away and would remain with my dependency forever. My husband questioned the expense that I was about to make, but I told him that my only options were to either try the program and pray that it worked or to do nothing at all and remain forever on that drug that was making me sick.
With a combination of skepticism and hope I sent out for the POR program. I eagerly followed the instructions and waited patiently until the process unfolded and the day finally came when I took the last drop of that dreadful medication. I will be forever grateful to God for leading me to POINT OF RETURN and to Alesandra for holding my hand every step of the way!
Laura G. (Texas) Lexapro
Last February I went to a walk-in clinic because of some upper respiratory problems. After examining me, the attending physician prescribed Levaquin (750 mg. for 5 days). After taking the medicine, I immediately began to experience insomnia. This went on for almost a week. After not sleeping for 6 or 7 days, I began to self-medicate...melatonin, Benadryl, etc. I continued to struggle with sleep for weeks. After reading online that Magnesium could "flush out" the Levaquin, I purchased some and took it. That night I experienced a rapid heart rate and a panic attack. The next morning I went to see my doctor thinking that I had an emotional issue. He put me on Xanax. The Xanax did help me to sleep so I did not worry about it. Some 3 months later my doctor told me that he wanted me to get off of the Xanax. I began to attempt to wean myself off of the Xanax but was unable to do so. Another doctor suggested that I wean off of the Xanax by taking Lunesta. I managed to wean off of the Xanax but then when I tried to wean off of the Lunesta - I was unable to sleep. I knew that I was in trouble and did not know what to do. I got online to try to find out if anyone could help me to wean off of the Lunesta.
I found POINT OF RETURN (POR) . I called and talked to a most wonderful and patient woman called Alesandra. She was so reassuring, especially regarding my total sense of panic. She answered my questions and most importantly gave me hope.
Over the next several months, I took the POR supplements. What was so critical was learning that I needed to have the Lunesta compounded. This made all of the difference. In addition to this there was a constant trail of e-mails back and forth to POR. Alesandra was prompt and patient with my endless list of questions. Her support was as critical as the nutrients as she calmed my fears of ever recovering from this mess.
I cannot thank POR and especially Alesandra enough for all of her help and encouragement. Because of her and POR, I am returning to a normal life. If you find yourself in a situation like I was in, please contact POR. And most importantly, do what they say. They absolutely know what they are talking about. I don't know where else you can turn than to a group like POR.
As far as I am concerned, besides the struggle getting off of the meds, I needed hope. And I got that hope from POINT OF RETURN. Alesandra, please know how much I thank you for your constant support, encouragement and direction throughout this entire process. I am so glad to know that you are there to help those of us who have struggled with addictive medicines.
Pastor Jim B. (Tennessee) Xanax, Lunesta
My story began 14 years ago when my husband and I moved our family to Eastern Europe to do Missionary Work. It seemed immediately upon my arrival I started struggling with Insomnia. I consulted an American Doctor who was there in the same country working to set up a medical clinic. She recommended several drugs that I took for a time, but none of them seemed to help. The medicines available in this country at that time were limited and older medications and they were all available over the counter. If you knew the name of the drug you wanted you just went to the pharmacy and purchased it, no prescription was necessary. I tried Valium and Amitriptyline. Neither of them worked very well. They seemed to slow my heart and cause me to want to sleep all day. But I never felt rested, just drugged. After a couple of years without a solution, I felt I needed to return to the states to see a Doctor and try to get at the bottom of this problem. I felt there had to be an answer.
When I saw the Doctor I tried to explain some of the factors that I thought were contributing to my insomnia or were possibly at the root of it. He said that he didn't need to know all that. He proceeded to give me a prescription and said if this one medication didn't work he had several we could try and for sure one of them would work. The one that he thought might be best was a newer medication called Remeron.
I returned overseas and things began to smooth out for me. It seemed that the prescription worked like magic. I realized that I did experience some side effects but they were not as bad as the insomnia so I over looked them. Because of our lifestyle of living overseas we would return to the states every 2 years and then for just the summer. I would bring a years supply of my medication back with me and then in the off year I would have someone bring it over to me.
I had been on Remeron for about 7 years, when I began to have problems. It began in the fall of 2003 about a month after I had started a new prescription. It was a generic form of Remeron. This was the first time I had taken Remeron in generic. I started having a nightly recurrence of insomnia, usually a gap of about 3 hours. Since we were still overseas I went back to the American Doctor who had helped me before. She had been prescribing my Remeron recently and was my closest link to help. She recommended that I increase the dosage to see if that would help. We worked together for 4 months trying to resolve the insomnia but to no avail. Finally in February 2004, out of frustration, she suggested that I stop taking the Remeron altogether. I questioned her, "You mean like just stop it tomorrow?" She said, "Yes. It isn't working and besides it will be out of your system in a week."
That was when my nightmare began. I was fine for several days and then about day 4 my body went berserk. I was working in our apartment one minute, and the next moment I threw open our front door and was running barefoot downstairs. I don't know what came over me. I didn't know what I was doing. I ran to a neighbor's apartment. My heart was beating very rapidly and I was having trouble speaking. Something was really wrong. She called the American Doctor who said to get a dosage of Remeron back into my body immediately. We began a process over the next days of trying to get this chemical back into my system as quickly and safely as possible to counteract the withdrawal effects.
I went back on the Remeron but that didn't seem to be much of a solution. My body was reeling from the abrupt stopping and starting of the drug. Because of the abrupt withdrawal I now had a host of other problems. Not the least of which was heart racing, seizures, panic, depression, anxiety, brain zaps, paranoia etc. I was terrified. My life had been turned upside down and I was trying to hang on. It was recommended I take new medications to control the withdrawal symptoms. They included beta-blockers for the heart racing, anti seizure medicine, Ambien for sleep, other antidepressants, and Xanax for panic. Over all I ended up taking at least 8 different medicines to try to fix the withdrawal symptoms. All I knew was that I wanted off this Remeron. I knew it was no longer working and now I had a whole host of other problems.
At this point my American Doctor came up with a 6 week taper. It didn't seem like things could get worse but going completely off of Remeron again intensified everything. I started having trouble functioning. I was trying to hang in there as I was just 2 months away from my oldest son's High School graduation in June and then we would be going back to the states as a family. About a month before graduation, it became apparent that I needed medical intervention beyond what I could receive where I was living. I was so sick and fragile that waiting was not an option. I love to travel and had made many trips by myself, but this time was different. I couldn't travel alone. God provided a friend who escorted me home for the 15-hour journey to the states. I don't remember much about the trip only that I cried most of it. I just remember people staring and all I could do was cry.
I entered an inpatient program at a counseling center. I saw counselors every day Monday through Friday, sometimes several times a day. I saw medical Doctors and a Psychiatrist. Not much was getting any better. I felt so strange, like I was losing touch with reality. I began to feel like everything was closing in on me. I couldn't be in a room with a closed door and whenever I was in my apartment I had to keep the doors open. I started having suicidal thoughts also. When I voiced these feelings to the counselor, they insisted I had to go back on the Remeron. They told me that all of these symptoms were telling me that I needed to be on this medicine. I was too confused to argue.
So after 9 months of hell and stopping and starting Remeron twice, I found myself back on it again. Because my health had taken such a beating and I was emotionally fragile we felt that we should resign our post overseas. We were reeling from the ordeal. We spent the next year just trying to put the pieces back together. It took me that long to get some semblance of normality back in my body. I had so many questions. What had happened to me? What went wrong? It would be 4 more years on Remeron before I had my answers.
In that time I tried to quit Remeron on my own several times. I had researched information and understood that my previous withdrawal attempts had been too rapid and that I needed to withdraw more slowly. I would try to cut pills and this didn't seem to work. I couldn't seem to get them uniform. I even tried to cut pills and then came up with an elaborate schedule of my own taper. On alternating nights I would reduce the dosage by cutting pills. My idea was to do it slowly and consistently. This too did not work.
I began to resign myself to the idea that I was stuck on this medicine. This medicine controlled my life and I knew without God's intervention if I ever got separated from my medicine for more than a few days that I most likely wouldn't survive.
In December of 2007 things were going along normally when I began to experience withdrawal symptoms again. I thought what is going on? I am not trying to withdraw. I remembered when I picked up my prescription I noticed it was cheaper than usual. I went to the bottle and sure enough my Pharmacy had switched manufacturers. I thought this is crazy. I felt so vulnerable. How could some generics work for me, and others not work and throw me into withdrawal! I was scared. As I thought about it I wondered if this could have been the same manufacturer that produced the Generic Remeron that began all my problems in the Fall of 2003?
Now more than anything I wanted a way out, but I didn't see an imminent solution….
In September of 2008 while at our public library getting books for a trip my husband was taking, I noticed they had a bin of magazines with a sign "Free." I don't usually have time to read magazines but some of them had never been opened and were still in the plastic mailer. I grabbed a couple thinking while my husband was gone I would have time to look at them. Several nights later I picked one up to look at an article advertised on front about exercise when my eyes landed on an article entitled "Are Generic
Drugs Safe?" (Prevention Magazine Feb. 2008). As I read the article I was stunned to realize that what I had thought possibly had caused my problems I now believed to be the source. Generic medicines are not monitored, as they should be. They are often not as strong or potent as the name brand drug. As I read I became convinced that this was why I experienced withdrawal and the host of other problems that escalated from the generic drug. Even though I had suspected it, to have it confirmed in my hands in print after so many years was sobering.
After reading the article I thought what do I do? I initially thought that I just needed to get back on the name brand of the drug, but when I researched it and realized how expensive it was I thought this isn't my solution. I would still be a slave to this drug. I continued to research everything I could on the Internet about Remeron and drug withdrawal. I came across several posts where people said taking Remeron was very similar to smoking marijuana. This was sobering to me as I have 2 sons who had been arrested in the past year for possession of Marijuana. I know we are each responsible for our own actions. However, if there was any connection between Remeron and marijuana I did have to wonder if my addiction to a legal drug had opened a door for them to abuse an illegal one. I didn't want there to be any kind of link for them to use drugs, legal or otherwise. I knew at that point that no matter what the outcome I had to get free.
In that process God directed me to the POINT OF RETURN website. I sat mesmerized by the testimonials. I couldn't believe that I wasn't alone. I called my husband who was 3,000 miles away and shared with him how God had spoken through the magazine article and the research. I cried as I spoke with him. God hadn't forgotten me and was making a way for my freedom and healing.
I began the POINT OF RETURN Withdrawal Program in October 2008 and finished it in March 2009. I followed it religiously. The supplements really worked. I had some side effects but the protocols in the manual were my guide and I adjusted things as issues came up. I appreciated the warmth and kindness of the POINT OF RETURN staff and the promptness of their replies. Withdrawal can put you in a fragile and vulnerable place and they understand that.
Knowing they were just a phone call or email away gave me such confidence. For the most part of the program I didn't need any extra assistance. Since finishing the taper I have had some insomnia and I have emailed Alesandra. She has given me some suggestions. I have so appreciated her kindness and support. She is helping me over some rough spots with insomnia and her encouragement has been invaluable.
I know that my body is still healing. Withdrawal is a process that doesn't just end after you take your last dosage. After 12 years on the medication it will take some time to heal but the worst is past.
I am grateful to God for His provision and help in this process and for leading me to the POR program. What the enemy of my soul has meant for evil, God will take and use for Good.
I love what author Graham Cooke has to say, "Father, Thank You for favor and vengeance combined. That, in our freedom in Christ, You not only deliver us from being victims but You give us a ministry in the very area where we have been robbed and ashamed. Everyone that we in turn set free is a sign of our payback on the enemy. To destroy the works of the devil is the evidence of Your power at work."
Nancy R. (California) Remeron
Thank you, Alesandra, for both your wonderful program and your kindness. Thank goodness helping others recover from their own personal version of medicated hell is your calling.
I have been on and off of some sort of anti-depressant, anti-anxiety and sleeping pill for the majority of my adult life. I finally decided that I had to find a better way. The thought of going cold turkey off of Cymbalta, Ambien and Xanax scared me to death...knowing of the difficulty going off of these particular medications. I know....I had tried before! I scoured the internet for help and support, and found Point of Return by chance. I felt a sense of calm come over me and I just knew this was going to change my life.
I emailed Alesandra at about 11:00 pm, and received a call from her by 9:00 am the next morning. Just hearing her voice and knowing how much she cared, and believed in the program made me feel better. My product arrived a day later. The healing began.
I am proud to say I have been completely med free for 5 months. It works. The program continues to work. And, if I have a bad moment, the POR team is an email or phone call away.
POINT OF RETURN ROCKS!
Pamela W. (California) Cymbalta, Ambien, Xanax
Three years ago when I started taking Citalopram for depression I had no idea that when I decided to go off of it, my body would have such a bad reaction. My family Doctor tried twice to taper me off and failed, finally trying to put me back to original dosage to try and relieve symptoms. That didn't work either so he prescribed Lorazepam as needed for anxiety. The whole point was to be rid of unnecessary medications. My life turned into a frightening haze of severe anxiety, physical sickness, depression, hopelessness and the distinct feeling that I was going crazy! I have never had anything so scary happen to me in my whole 57 years of life. Then my husband found the POR Program and I had hope. My horrible symptoms slowly got better. I took very good notes as to what was going on so that I could assist the POR staff in answering my questions. I was afraid at the beginning that I would NEVER feel like myself again. I was beside myself with worry about my family and how they would cope without me.
Now, 3 ½ months later, I am amazed at how my body and mind have come back with the help of these products. I have so appreciated the moderators help and loving care during these months. They helped me to realize that I haven't been the only one with these frightening feelings to try and cope with. They let me know that I WOULD recover in time and feel myself again. With a lot of patience, diligence and especially prayer, I am well on my way to being the person I was before this drug took part of my life from me. I will never forget this experience. Thank you so much, Point of Return (POR) staff.
Terri S., (Oregon) Citalopram
Life for me now is just so busy with a wife, raising three teenagers, running a remodeling business and now just started a cabinet shop. Life today sure is not what it was 6 months ago or even 1, 2 or 3 years ago – as you know!! I'm just sorry that I haven't shared my story until now.
My road to recover started at least 4 years ago when I was surfing the web one evening trying to find a way out from what the doctors were telling me. They said I would be on medications for depression and anxiety for the rest of my life! I ran onto a site called POINT OF RETURN. I started reading all the info and was very unsure of what I was reading, but I decided to call.
Andrea answered the phone and as we talked, I finally realized that you understood what I was going through better than anyone else did for the past 7 years – including my psychologist, psychiatrist, counselors, etc… It still amazes me how you picked up that I was struggling with suicide when I didn't even tell you or hint of it. Other symptoms included 20-30 panic attacks a day, weight gain that I couldn't loose, swelling and on and on.
God used you to save my life in more ways than one. The doctors had me so drugged up, that I felt like a robot with no emotion or feeling. Once I started the program, I gradually started to fell better. The thoughts of suicide began to leave. Within 4 months, I was off the antidepressant medication (REMERON). The Klonopin was a lot slower. It was so neat to hear my wife say, "Wow, you are beginning to care about me and the kids again and life in general!" Taste, hearing, smell, sight – all started to return. One year later, I was able to get off of disability after 7 long years. Today, May 1-, 2009; things are great compared to what they were!!! Does that mean no problems? NO, but I have no thoughts of suicide for years now, I had only one panic attack in 4-6 months, my energy is great – even when I only get 4-5 hours of sleep. Before I slept 8 – 10 hours or more and still couldn't get going. I have no more swelling; my weight was around 210 – 220, now I'm 160 – 170.
I have a Christian band called Prepare the Way. Before to get up to perform in front of an audience was torture with panic attacks - now I'm just a little nervous with the ability to control it and I started to enjoy performing.
The most important thing of all is, that God helped me every step of the way. He used Andrea and others to help me. Thank you Andrea and everyone at POINT OF RETURN from me, my wife Debbie, Tim, Austin & Faith. We love you all!!!!
Wayne S. (Arkansas) Klonopin, Remeron
After the birth of my third baby some twenty-six years ago, I was given antidepressants for post partum depression. Since then I have been on many different meds as they tend to lose their effectiveness and you have to try something new. Two years ago I was put on Cymbalta by my psychiatrist and I must say I felt fabulous on it. After two years on it however, I began to have severe hay fever symptoms that got worse and worse. Finally my eyes got so bad that nothing stopped them from itching and I knew that the med was the only thing different in the last two years that I had done in my life. I had to quit the Cymbalta. I tapered carefully and got off fairly easily until it finally left my system about 45 days later. Then I began to crash. June of 2008.
The doctor put me on Lexapro and within five days I was a bundle of anxiety. I wanted to jump out of my skin it was so bad. In a panic I stopped the Lexapro and took my usual dose of Cymbalta. That’s when a nuclear bomb went off in my brain. I was a mess. I had anxiety, depression and disturbing thoughts. When I went to the doctor he sent me home with sleeping pills, Xanax and Abilify. I went home and threw it all in the trash and knew there was another way. That is when I found POINT OF RETURN.
I got the program and began a painfully difficult recovery because I was a protracted client. I had quit these meds quickly. The anxiety was huge, depression would come and go and sleep left all together. As a result of lack of sleep and all the stress of recovery adrenal fatigue set in and to add insult to injury menopause raised its ugly head. I still have a t-shirt that says, “I’m still hot. It just comes in flashes.”
Well there I am. My brain is off line, my hormones are tanking and sleep left me all together. Easily the worst year of my life. Not even a husband nearly dying of cancer and a child on hard drugs for years but who is now doing fabulous was worse then this.
I tried the wrong hormone treatment for 4 months before I discovered that my body doesn’t like extra progesterone. It makes me more depressed. I switched to an estrogen patch and within six weeks was so much better. Finally, things have started to come together.
I have really focused on good nutrition. I eat very little sugar and take vitamin D3 and C in addition to the products from Point of Return. Whenever things weren’t going well, I would call Alley and she would find what I had added that was stirring things up.
The staff has been so great. Alley has been such a guiding light for me to cheer me on and give me hope.
I thought I would never sleep again and I hated watching the clock drag on hour by hour all night long. I honestly thought I would die from lack of sleep. Those days were so painful to endure. Now they are gone just as Alley said. I am sleeping well. I take hops, lemon balm, Vitamin C and Tryptophan, which you can only after you finish the program.
The anxiety is under control. I found a program on the Internet call “Panic Away” that I loved. Depression is under control with the use of Vitamin D and Omega 3 tabs and Tryptophan.
The last piece of the puzzle is the adrenal fatigue. Alley said that too will pass and so far she is always right. I am not a patient person and taking months to heal has been hard for me but if I can recover as well as Alley it will be worth it.
I am grateful to have my brain back and am looking forward to getting my body back.
Depression is hell and I know my family has a genetic predisposition for it. I had a brother who also struggled with it and was so over-medicated that he fell asleep at the wheel and was killed in the car crash that followed. His diet was bad and he drink tons of diet pop and I know he could have had a much better life if he had known of the POINT OF RETURN program.
Doctors don’t have all the answers and as my husband, a doctor, says, “If you are a hammer everything looks like a nail.” Go to a psychiatrist and he’ll send you home with pills. I feel nutrition and exercise are better sources for help.
I wish that 26 years ago I could have had a better care and had been spared so much misery. Maybe the future will be a blood test to check your DNA and blood and prescribe the vitamins and minerals you lack, not a boatload of meds.
Thank you Alley, Andrea and Terry for all of your patience and kindness. We in a fragile state need your extra kindness. You are so professional and such a well-run company.
Thank you for all you have done for me and my road to recovery. April 2009.
Betty G. (Utah) Prozac
Let me say, A big Thank You to Point of Return. You and Terry were such a great support for me. The products that you offer are the BEST. So pure and natural. I know without them the withdrawal from Nortriptyline and Ativan would have been very miserable. The books that go with the program were VERY helpful, a must have! I feel great, sleeping just fine. So good to be drug FREE!!!!
Thank You POINT OF RETURN!
Morgan M., (Idaho) Ativan, Nortriptyline
I just wanted to say thank you! Also, I love your product/program ... my life is definitely changing for the better. I haven't felt this good for many YEARS.
Love, Melissa B. (Indiana)
Just wanted to share a little of my progress and how your supplements have helped me. Last July I started to get off Celexa (had been on it for five years) because I had lost all of my drive and passion for life. I bought your books, read them and took the supplements. Gradually my ability to focus came back. My mind felt powerful and steady again. As of September 26 I have been free of Celexa entirely. So it is now almost 5 months.
All sorts of interests resurfaced. Yes I did feel impatient and irritated but it turned out I had many reasons to feel this way and the anti-depressant had lulled me into a foolish la la land. These drugs are lethal and no one tells you how awful it is to get off them nor the long term effects that they have.
Combined with several other aids I feel better than I ever have in my entire life. I'm still struggling with dry eye but I'm going to try flax seed oil. I also have twinges of arthritis that I never had before but am hoping that as I go on I will be able to address this as well. The most precious thing is that my mind at last feels normal - not buffeted by anxiety, depression and a frozen feeling when emotions come up. Now I feel a whole spectrum of emotions but they feel appropriate to reality. I used to always question: is it what is happening or is it just my mind. That was such a frustrating way to live.
It's quite a journey. I never thought it would be so wonderful. When I think back that since I was about 20 years old I have battled with bouts of depression - and it has taken me this long to find real answers. I am 59 years old. I had years of therapy and I'm sure some of that helped. But to be honest I think the problem was in my body and I have had to heal my body with supplements, vitamins, good food and exercise. I've decided to put the health of my body absolutely first. I've found that it is a spiritual journey for me and that the state of my body profoundly affects my mind and spiritual state.
Thank you so much for your work. This is very important and needed. Many thanks and many good wishes. Please keep up your good work. You are helping many many people......thank you again!
Christine B. (Oregon) Celexa
I wanted to write to you and tell you how much better I am and to thank you for your help. Terry has been a great help and encouragement to me and has walked me through this process along with your guidance. I have gone from a tossing, turning, frustrated sleeper to resting comfortably now each night. My biggest hurdle to overcome was getting to sleep each night. I am an "A" type intensive driver and I swim about 2-3 miles a week. I am a high school math teacher and my daily schedule is teaching 3 honors math classes to 9-12 graders. As you can see I need my sleep...if I am not rested and ready for all 65 of them each day it shows! Most nights I would toss and turn for an hour or so trying to relax into sleep with no success.If I got to sleep I would wake up and then dread the process of trying to get back to sleep again. Medication does not affect me much...I never feel drowsy from medicine...I just feel drowsy from not getting the sleep!
I began this process with 2 T of the Support at night and 2 Relax pills. I have progressed to taking one Relax pill each night now. I am usually to sleep within 15 minutes of going to bed after doing some reading in bed. I get up once a night to go to the bathroom and then I am back to sleep. I am THRILLED to be getting even 5-6 hours of sleep. It does not take as much rest for me to keep going as it does Jim but I do need some! Thank you for your support. A year ago I never thought that I would be here! You have been an encouragement and a great help. Jane B.
I am generally feeling like I have better clarity of thought, my mood is lighter and I have more energy. I don't know if this is just a psychological reaction because I feel like I have some hope now to escape the effects of these drugs or if what I am feeling is actually real. Yesterday though I had a brief bit of anxiety over the upcoming withdrawal process. I have been reading your book and the documenting of your withdrawal process and memories of when I quit Paxil cold turkey came flooding back. I realize now that everything will be fine because of the supplements, and your program and support. I truly thank GOD for leading me to your website, not just for myself but also to tell others about Point of Return.
Peggy, F. (Canada) Wellbutrin, Zoloft
Like most people taking prescription medications received from a family Doctor, little insight was given to the habitual nature of benzodiazepine. After just a month of taking low dosages of Xanax and then Klonopin, I unknowingly developed very uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms upon stopping the medications. Of course my Doctor recommended an increase in dosage. I decided to stop altogether. When I did things, of course, got worse. That is when I found POINT OF RETURN and worked with Alesandra and Andrea in getting an understanding of what was happening to me and started taking the recommended supplements. In a world where there is a scarcity on helping others, the people at POINT OF RETURN are an anomaly. Not only are they knowledgeable on symptoms of withdraw, they are full of love and care and their entire purpose in life is to help others. I was able to recover from my terrible experience in about a 3 weeks but I know many others do not have it so easy. In either case, POINT OF RETURN is a caring and thorough method of learning to come off such deteriorating medications. I would have lost my mind without the people at POINT OF RETURN and I recommend them to anyone in similar need. Bless you."
Michael G., (Virginia) Xanax
When my husband first told me about the POINT OF RETURN program, I have to admit I was a bit skeptical.
However, I knew how desperately he had been searching for help in getting off the antidepressant and benzodiazepines that were destroying his health and completely changing our lives.
When he contacted Alesandra and she immediately replied, I could see the light of hope come into his life again. I knew then that the Lord had led him to discover the POINT OF RETURN program. We both finally felt that he had found the help he needed to successfully come off the drugs and return to health. Thank you Alesandra and Point of Return for giving me back my husband. We can now look forward to many more happy years together.
I would encourage anyone who has a spouse or loved one suffering from the effects of psychotropic drugs to enlist the help of the thoroughly researched and proven POINT OF RETURN program. Simply put, It works!
Sandra G. (Alabama)
In May of 2005, I retired from Science (Chemistry / Physics / Biology / Anatomy) teaching after 39 successful and enjoyable years in the states of Alabama and Georgia in which I won numerous awards for teaching excellence.
Eight months prior to retiring, my wife and I built our dream home in the mountains of NE Alabama. The house was "built at a distance" with not enough supervision on our part, as neither of us had had any prior experience with the building of a home. To make a long story short, we ended up selling the house seven months later at a tremendous loss due to the fact that it was inadvertently built over a high water table, which caused problems during heavy rains in the Fall/Winter of 2005.
My wife and I became actively involved in a church in our new hometown nestled in the mountains of NE Alabama where the "mountains meet the lakes". We hated to leave the area where God sent us, but there were no other suitable homes at the time of the sale so we ended up moving to another location 130 miles away. My wife and I were never really able to "get connected" to another church in this location, even though we visited several. We have since moved again and are attending a church but not actively involved like we would like to be.
My problem began when I commenced to worry about the loss of the money on the house we built, as well as the dashing of the dreams we had carefully planned. Having retired, I was no longer immersed in teaching/shaping lives which I dearly loved, and I felt as though I had lost my identity. Also, the town we moved to didn't have any soft running surfaces which I had always been fortunate enough to have as an aging distance runner. These three factors caused the worrying to escalate.
In May of 2006, I went to see a medical doctor for anxiety/mild depression. He later referred me to a psychiatrist. I was prescribed Xanax (0.5 mg), Lexapro (20 mg), and Temazepam (30 mg). These three meds threw my life into an unimaginable tailspin. I had no idea the drugs, which were supposed to be treating me, would end up almost totally destroying my life. I began to feel more anxious, depressed, and began to have real issues with sleep. The Temazepam was just "knocking me out" but not allowing me to have normal, deep sleep and was leaving me even more fatigued. The Xanax and Lexapro were causing even more anxiety and increasing the depression. I even experienced a panic attack shortly after beginning the drugs, and my sisters from miles away came to see me. They knew that something was terribly wrong. The psychiatrist admitted me to the hospital for a few days, and told me it would take up to six months for the antidepressant to achieve maximum effectiveness, after which I should be able to taper off within six weeks. However, he kept me on the drugs for over a year after that. By then the drugs were well on their way to causing a total destruction of my personality and life.
Consequently, I had to give up the sport which had become so much a part of my life for 45 years due to the side effects the drugs were causing. Among the side-effects I experienced were increased anxiety/depression, panic attacks, dizziness, vertigo, fatigue, bleeding gums, heart palpitations, leg pain, blurred vision, tinnitus, headache, nosebleeds, chest tightness, weight gain, skin flushing, and more too numerous to mention. In the past running had been a great stress reliever, but I was now unable to even enjoy running, or life for that matter. I had attained 492 running awards. The goal I set in 1979 was to get 500 awards, so I fell eight short of the goal. I qualified and participated three times in the Boston Marathon along my running journey with qualifying times of 2:44, 2:48, and 2:49 during the years of 1981-83.
By now, because of my declining health due to being slowly poisoned, I decided I had to take myself off the three drugs which were destroying me physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. I was a true "basket case" and had intense feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. On hindsight, I now realize the drugs were causing those feelings as they were altering my thinking. I had no desire to live, and suicidal feelings, due largely to the drugs, began to emerge which were extremely frightening.
From numerous articles written by truth-seeking psychiatrists and other medical professionals, I have concluded that the entire field of psychiatry is completely unscientific. Patients like myself are being "diagnosed" with "chemical imbalances" despite the fact that no test exists to support such a claim. There is no clear-cut lab test to prove the existence of a chemical imbalance, and there is no real conception of what a correct chemical balance would look like. Totally unrestrained, psychiatrists continue to harm in the name of help. By their own admission, psychiatrists do not know how to cure a single mental problem and they do not know how their treatments affect patients. For more information of this pseudoscientific field, please Google "Psychiatry: An Industry of Death" and watch the various youtubes.
I knew in my heart that God had more work for my wife and me to do, so I decided I must find some way to live. God provided me with a wonderful companion in life, and had it not been for her compassionate love and care I could not have made it. I had to live for her. Neither of us fully comprehended what was going on in our lives during the time of this tragedy. As we look back, we know it was the work of Satan whose purpose was to "steal, kill, and destroy" our life together. He did not want us to fulfill God's plan for our life. But Christ is far greater and had a better plan through POINT OF RETURN.
In desperation, I began to search the web for information on how to withdraw from these horrible drugs. But much to my dismay, I could not find any answers. I came away with more questions than answers, especially after consulting numerous "benzo / antidepressant blogs". The search essentially amounted to the blind trying to lead the blind. Nevertheless, I had a persistent determination to live and spent most of each day surfing the web trying to find answers as to how to withdraw from the poisons which had been pushed on me by the all too familiar "drug pushers in white lab coats" masquerading as medical doctors.
I decided that if I wanted to live, I had to come off the mind-altering drugs which were literally engulfing every aspect of my being. As a scientist, I started experimenting on my own to try to withdraw before it was too late. I began to taper by shaving off an ever so small amount of the Xanax and Lexapro each day. I knew this was a imprecise process of withdrawal, but I had no other options at my disposal at the time. The withdrawal symptoms from this tapering process initially were not too great. The real jolt to my body came as I continued to reduce for a few more weeks, eventually having to go back on the Lexapro because of unbearable withdrawal symptoms. I was able to stay off the Xanax since my initial prescription for it was very small. The Lexapro withdrawal was presenting real problems however, as anxiety and depression were settling in once again. Within a week I had to go back on the Lexapro just to keep the withdrawal symptoms at bay. In addition, the side-effects of the drugs were causing my skin to age drastically along with other horrible side-effects. The health of the skin is a good indication of what might be happening inside which, of course, one cannot see. I was slowly dying and didn't know where to turn.
I continued to search the web for hours on end each day for help. Finally the Lord directed me to the POR home withdrawal program, and the rest is history. On Sunday afternoon, April 13, 2008. I emailed Alesandra Rain, and she responded in surprisingly short order and introduced me to the program. Shortly thereafter, I began the program of supplements and compassionate care by one who fully understood my dilemma because she has been there herself, and she was ready and willing to offer the help I so desperately needed.
I followed the program religiously and listened intently to Alesandra as she led me out of darkness and despair which had plagued my life for the past two + years. She is the best encourager I have ever encountered in my 63 years of existence. I discovered quickly that Alesandra has the "patience of Job," as evidenced by the fact that she patiently and quickly answered seemingly hundreds of questions I posed to her. I was in "good hands" with POINT of RETURN and on the road to total recovery. She "stuck" with me to the very end, as she kept promising she would do in seemingly voluminous emails I received from her throughout the withdrawal phase.
I was able to withdraw from Lexapro first and then the Temazepam with little to no withdrawal symptoms during a period of seven months while on the POR program. I took my last amount of the final drug (Temazepam) on the 19th of October, 2008, and today I can honestly say I am on the road to total recovery from the horrible drugs. Had it not been for POR, I would not be writing this testimonial today.
To celebrate my freedom from drugs, my wife and I scaled the 3rd highest peak in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee (Mt. LeConte) a couple of weeks ago. It was an 11 mile round trip journey which we completed in six hours. This challenging hike is something we had always wanted to do, and I thank the Lord that we were able to accomplish the task which would have been unheard of for me just a few short months ago.
My advice to anyone who is on psychotropic drugs, and intent on getting off, is to utilize the POR protocols. Follow the team's advice and you, too, can be set free from these horrible poisons. I tried to withdraw on my own, as I was ignorant at the time of any such program in existence. The POR program needs to be proclaimed on every major news network in the world!! I know that such proclamations will never happen because of BIG PHARMA, the FDA, the FTC, and the AMA (Medical Doctors) who can all be viewed collectively as the "good ole boy network." This united group feels that the way to sell drugs is to sell psychiatric mental illness. They are all "in bed together" with a desire to push these horrible poisons on the unsuspecting public for monetary gain.
Today I received a Certificate of Achievement for having completed the program. That certificate, along with about a 3/4 inch stack of emails from Alesandra which I bound in a folder, is something which I will always keep and treasure. They represent the saving of another life. Add me, dear Alesandra, to the 15,000+ in 47 countries which have been miraculously saved through the thoroughly researched program of drug recovery you and Andrea co-founded.
My wife and I would someday like to meet Alesandra and the entire POR team (Andrea, Terry and Dr. Code), and we would like to personally thank them for saving my life. Maybe it will happen if we can go West to visit the Grand Canyon and hike to the bottom and back, which I once did 42 years ago with a college classmate (Joe Lary). The next stop after the hike on our trip out West will certainly be Malibu, California and POINT OF RETURN, the saving oasis of my life.
What does the future hold for us? Well, I am slowly recovering my health, and we are ready to move back to the area of NE Alabama where the Lord initially sent us, to work in the harvest field before being temporarily side-tracked by Satan, the enemy of everyone's soul.
My skin is taking on a more youthful appearance, and I am beginning to sleep normally and deeply once again as Alesandra promised. My wife and I are consistently walking eight miles each day at a 15-minute per mile pace with wrist weights. I hope to soon get back to running as well. It's a great feeling being fully alive rather than half dead. The main lesson I have learned from this tragedy is that life is fragile and should not be taken for granted, and that we should live each day as if it were our last, because it very well could be. My wife and I now believe our best days are ahead of us. We will spend the rest of our days enjoying life and singing the praises of POR to which we owe a debt of immense gratitude.
These messengers of God, helped me out of the murky clay and back to life. Believe me and countless others, it can be done if you will only take the first step. Each additional step will become easier. I can truthfully promise that you will make it though all this, as I was reassured countless times. Trust me, you will not be alone on the journey, for God's messengers will be there to help you every step of the way to RISE above the drug problems you face!
Tom G. (Alabama) Lexapro, Temazepam
I want to give you an update on my withdrawal from the Klonopin. Today I am 70 days free of Klonopin. I could not have been this successful without your support and the help of the supplements. It has been difficult at times but I think the worse is over. Nearly all the withdrawal symptoms are gone now including the ringing in my ears. I will Attempt to withdrawal from the Elavil in about 2 months. That is not so urgent. Thank you so much for your kindness, support and help. Thank you again so much.
Love, Roger C. (Oregon) Klonopin
I cannot thank you enough for your help and personal attention during my "time of trial" this past summer. While suffering from a painful condition with searing, constant nerve pain in my right arm and hand, I was overmedicated with antidepressant and tranquilizers (which did nothing to help the pain). Thankfully, when searching the Internet for "effexor Withdrawal," I found Point of Return and began your program on Memorial Day weekend.
Whenever I had a question or concern, you were there for me. Most importantly, you gave me hope~ You answered my emails (sometimes within minutes) and helped me over the wrought spots. I appreciated your honesty and encouragement. Since your personal battle also involved nerve pain, I was comforted by you personal insights. Also, you personal attention in modifying my program to improve sleep and lessen pain was definitely a turning point. Thanks to you and your products, my three withdrawals were painless and relatively symptom-free, and I finished the last one earlier this month.
Nerve pain is unending and merciless. It's 24/7 – you can't get away from it. My life was a fees. I could not eat, sleep, work, or interact with my family or grandchildren. I wanted to cry but did not have the energy. At times, in the idle of the night, I thought it would be so easy to end this… Thankfully, my faith in God helped me through those dared, dark nights. As someone wise once said, "even good comes from bad." My problem (caused by a blockage of blood-flow to a major nerve) forced me to look at my life an eliminate things that weren't working. Now, I have new doctors who are competent and responsive and I also made changes in my personal life (joined a new church, joined a gym), and am no longer a "door mat" at home.
I could not conclude this letter without thanking Terry for handling my orders quickly and efficiently. If he had a question, Terry would call me right away. Again, personal attention made all the difference. His recommendation to utilize the auto-ship program helped me save money, and I could easily change what was sent each month.
I am drug-free now and my mind is clear and sharp. I returned to work in mid-August. My energy level is wonderful and I will be 59 years you in November! The nerve pain is much, better and my life is full. I plan to continue taking the nutrients forever. In closing, Alesandra, you are an angel!.
Anna E. (Pennsylvania) Effexor
Hey thanks so much for all you're doing, not only for Rachel, but for all the people you work with..You guys are troopers! Rachel has really got a new lease of life working as a moderator with you - she just LOVES it! I'm very proud of her and I love her to bits! It's so great to see her doing so well after all these years of...well, you know. I just can't thank you, Andrea and your team for all you're doing!
I'm not sure how much you hear from the spouses of those you're helping, but please hear it from me that there is nothing better than to see the most important person in the world to me come through all this! I must admit that the night before Rachel stumbled upon your website, we talked together for a long time and we really didn't know where to go from there. We men really like to fix things, and I have to admit, I was stumped! It is by the grace of God we (she) found you and I am eternally grateful.
We both look forward to heading you way one day to thank you all in person...Until then, get some sleep, girl - you sound exhausted!!
All my best - Quinn, (CANADA)
Hi - I just want to say hello to all the staff at POINT OF RETURN. I am doing fine. I am now 2 1/2 years without drugs. Without all your support it would be impossible to get off those drugs. I am taking just nutritional supplements for support. There are hard days now, but I can handle it by myself without drugs. Hope all of you are doing great. Congratulations for the job well done.
Luis D. (Honduras) Cymbalta
My chains are gone and Ive been set FREE!!! Freedom, Freedom, Freedom! To my three precious angels that have been encamped around me for the past 13 months. Thank you! I would like to personally thank Alesandra, Terry, and Andrea the staff at POINT OF RETURN! Their support, care and love is more than I could have ever hoped for! After a15 year battle with prescription drugs I am now free! It all started 15 years ago when my youngest son was 2. I was in an accident that left me with migraines and pain. That is when I was started on pain killers and antidepressants for pain. From there it progressed, so started my fall into the pits off Hell! For the last 4 yrs of my life on prescription meds I was in a comatose state. Not able to speak, walk, or talk. I lost my hair, fingernails, and toenails. My body had all but shut down. Not only was my life being destroyed, but lives of my precious husband of 20 yrs and 4 children. I went off all meds in July of 2005. I thought I was in Hell before. This was the beginning of a 3 year withdrawal process. I was put back on 1 med to keep the seizures down and to calm my withdrawals. For 24 months I shook uncontrollably, did not sleep for days on end, was in constant pain, and had unending anxiety. I was bound and determined to live and find an answer to this misery! In Aug of 2007 I went back into a protracted withdrawal and was ready to give in and hand my life over to the enemy that had consumed my life for the past 15 yrs! It was then I found POINT OF RETURN (POR). After a few weeks I improved and as of March 27, 2008 I have been drug free. I give all the praise and glory to my Father in Heaven for leading me to the POR products and to the staff that would help me regain my life! My life is now full of abundance and Joy! My health is being restored and strength has come back into my life. It is now for this cause I l live. I live to free all from the bondage I lived in for 15yrs.If your are asking if this program is the answer, Yes it is! There is freedom for ALL through this program! Prayers of thanks for the POR staff will forever be on my lips!
Blessings and Favor,
Karen L. (Texas) - Trazadone, Lexapro, Depakote, Klonopin, Ativan, Ritalin
In 2006, when I really went insane......I had NO IDEA Xanax tolerance / withdrawal was the cause. I just thought I was going out of my mind and that was really, really scary. Needless to say my husband was scared too (even though he didn't say he was). I lost all confidence in my ability to ever being able to function again in this world. I just want to thank you again for showing me and so many other suffering people that there IS light at the end of the tunnel. May God be with you and the other wonderful people at POINT OF RETURN. May He continue to keep you all safe and well......without POR, many of us would be goners.
Lydia K. (New Jersey) Xanax
On my most blessed days I am asked why I look so good and I am ecstatic when I’m given the opportunity to truly answer that question. Recently I was told that I “look like a million bucks” and my reply was “I feel like five million!” It is very difficult to explain to others who may not understand how truly amazing it feels to finally be happy, joyful and full of life. These are the results of my experience with Point of Return along with my relationship with Jesus Christ.
I spent 15 long and frustrating years on prescription medications and by all of the world’s mindset I had every right to be on most of those drugs. I had struggled thru my mother’s suicide and a young failed marriage that produced a severely handicapped child. After my second marriage, my older brother and best friend committed suicide also. It was then that I was diagnosed with clinical depression and the roller coaster ride of legal drugs began. I was later diagnosed as bipolar after the tragic, accidental death of my second son at 12 years old. The merry-go-round of prescription drugs ensued while I voluntarily continued my addiction to smoking and a few illegal drugs for added misery. I joined the ranks of poor souls admitted to a mental facility and was tossed around from one diagnosis to another.
Eventually, I decided to stop the madness but not before I learned that I was entrapped in the worst kind of addiction… benzodiazepines. I was the host to several different types of the legal poison including KLONOPIN, XANAX, ATIVAN and RESTORIL. Enhanced with several other glowing additions of drugs for added spice I ignorantly embarked on a cold-turkey withdrawal that produced the very worst kind of misery and torture known to mankind. I went for literally weeks at a time without ANY sleep and my body was in turmoil to say the very least. I searched high and low for answers and tried every natural remedy and supplement known to man with no success. Still I was determined. With my faith in Jesus Christ and my eye on freedom I pressed on.
In April of 2007 my life changed forever. I found the POINT OF RETURN website. I had been conducting the exact same search on the web for months but had come up empty. On that day I found my answer. With a guarded heart I sent my inquiry in via the website and within THREE MINUTES my cell phone was ringing. The voice I heard on the other end was the softest, most loving and understanding sound I had ever heard. FINALLY, someone understood and had a clue of the private living hell I had been enduring. Alesandra Rain became my friend and partner in the quest to be free. She immediately sent me the program by over night delivery and when I hung up with her that night I fell down on my living room floor all alone with God and I cried. Finally, I was crying tears of relief and not tears of pain and frustration. For some reason, Alesandra had given me hope and I had no doubt that I had found the answer.
I was a poster child for the program. I followed it religiously and strived to make every day count toward my success. Within a few weeks I was feeling better. Every time I thought I couldn’t feel any better I learned I was wrong and it just kept getting better. In mid-November of 2007 I took my final dose of prescription medication and I have been drug free ever since! The nutrition on the program was the answer to my prayers and assisted with the restored health to my brain and my body. As Alesandra and her loving team continued encouraging me to be patient I regained my health and most importantly I regained my joy and my zeal for life. I don’t remember feeling so good. I now sleep like a baby and live every single day to its fullest. I live in a small town and people have known me for many years. Not many days go by in recent times that someone doesn’t comment on how good I look and seem to feel. I am so overjoyed that my health shows in my attitude. I am enjoying my marriage of 23 years and also my youngest son who at 16 is the light of my life. I am pursuing bible college and will be certified within the Assembly of God Church as a pastor very soon. It will be exciting to see what God does with my life as I grow to spread the good news of all that He can do with a little faith and determination.
I was recently blessed to meet Alesandra in person and the experience can hardly be described. Needless to say we were destined to cross paths. My passion for telling others of the horrors of prescription drug use and abuse is huge and I am delighted to help others to find the peace and freedom that I have found. It is my hope that God will continue to allow me the pleasure of sharing the story He has given me for the sole purpose of encouraging others.
Wendy H. (Texas) - Klonopin, Xanax, Ativan, Restoril
Alesandra - Thank you for always taking my calls. It is so comforting to have the direct connection to you and to get my questions answered. This entire experience with POR has been of incredible comfort to me. With you, Terry and Andrea.... and to read the testimonials of others who've been in the same hell. I just never, ever thought that there would come the day where I would be understood. I was being treated like I was crazy, and pretty much told so by the doctors. I have searched for the last seven years for an answer to all the health issues that plagued me: severe anxiety, agoraphobia, severe depression, severe insomnia - I would not sleep at all...for weeks!...the several neck surgeries/steroid injections that literally sent me over the moon. I really did not want to live any more.... I was in horrible pain from the bottom of my feet to the top of my head.... I couldn't sit, I couldn't lie down...there was never a moment when I was even ok. The great news is that things have really started to change for me: I am already doing 75% better than I was before I started the POR - my hair is starting to look normal and pretty again....my emotions have really balancing out, I hardly ever cry (used to be an hourly thing for me), the color in my face is returning....my skin tone has completely changed...my fingernails (and hair) are growing in quickly. I just have this little bit of muscle/jaw/neck discomfort still going on (which has already improved greatly), and I am so excited for it to be completely gone when I'm finally off the meds.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you, thank you, thank you!! I will keep you posted!
Take good care,
Holly - Klonopin
Eighteen years ago I went to a counselor because of a troubled relationship. In order to continue her program, I was required to go on Prozac....thus started my journey. Today, after three months of faithfully using the products and following the directions in the POINT OF RETURN program, I am free. I sent in an email questioning if I should feel this good!! My greatest fear was that I would reach this emotional clarity and then crash to a new low.
To my joy, I continue to feel clear, calm and free. I am sleeping again, have energy and no longer suffer from constipation or anxiousness. My weight has started to come down to a normal range.
WHAT I FEEL TODAY:
1. Clarity - I can really see things around me with my emotional eye in such a clear state, no emotions to block.
2. My emotions feel like I am on a "high", but not exactly a nervous state, just a state of alertness.
I have not hit a brick wall, I have not been let down. As far as the eighteen year relationship...still there, but I am in a much better condition to take control of my life and make decisions based on clarity, rather that emotional turmoil. -
Marilyn F. (California) Prozac
I am writing to let you know that I have successfully completed my taper from 7+ years of 150 mg of EFFEXOR XR using your program. I have been EFFEXOR-free for almost 3 weeks now. I initially communicated with you in late January about how to taper from an XR medication. After much deliberation I switched to the tablet form, prepared for my taper with the supplements, took my full dose in two half-doses a day for two more weeks, and finally started my taper. I actually tapered at a slower rate which worked out well for me. I had mild symptoms at the points of tapering but they typically resolved after a few days. I had only one severe event and I knew it was because I had tapered one day and then took my next dose a little late the following morning. My final taper (actual withdrawal) was thankfully, "uneventful".
Again, I thank you so much for your help.
Laura P., (Washington) Effexor
It's been 170 days since I my last dosage of LEXAPRO and I just wanted to say that I feel great. Although I was only on the meds for 3 months, nothing prepared me for the strange and scary symptoms that were to follow. Thank you so much for your help and to Alesandra especially thank you for your wisdom that you shared with me during this nightmare ordeal. Your story and the testimonials of others on this website have truly been an inspiration to me and were so compelling I had to give your program a try. As I came off the medication and started experiencing the withdrawals, I had so many fears and questions that I needed answers to, but I thank God that Alesandra was able to help and reassure me that things would get better for me. Also, I have to say thanks to Shawnda, Janet, and Laurie - your advice and personal experiences helped me through this as well. Now, I can honestly say that I reached that moment of restoration and now I can actually have a good night's rest and I am back to my old self again... I could have never done it without your program and most of all your encouragement. Thank you so much for helping me to recover. I personally believe that God does not mean for people to be on these medications, and I know He helped me find you guys to lead me to the right path. May God bless all of you for what you do. I have given testimony to many at my church about how your program helped me to come off the medication and I pray for more people to be openminded enough to try your program as I know some people have been on medications for years. You are truly doing a wonderful service to mankind. In this day and age it is nice to find a place that offers Hope. There are better alternatives to treating depression and your program has proven that to me.
N.L., (New Jersey) - Lexapro
My name is Michel, and I took high doses of SSRI's for about 12 years. On the rare occasions that I tried to get off of them on my own, I would soon begin to cry for no apparent reason. With my wonderful psychiatrist's supervision and the encouragement of the folks at POINT OF RETURN, I used the nutrients diligently over a period of several months and had the compounding pharmacist taper my EFFEXOR according to the instructions. I did well, except for the last 3 weeks of withdrawals, which I was told to expect. But I held tight, and I finally made it off these drugs and have been thriving off of them for a year! Sometimes I return to taking the supplements if I am under a bit of stress, but I can then go back off of them when things calm down. I really appreciate the gift of being able to be off the SSRI's because of the negative side effects they had. Thank you!!!
"'But I will restore you to health
and heal your wounds,'
declares the LORD..." Jeremiah 30:17
Michel B.L. - (South Carolina) - Effexor
Everything is going great for all of us. It still amazes me how good I feel mentally and physically! Things I took for granted before getting sick and then not being able to do just the most simple things. Gabe and Shaggy and I walk a mile every night. I am closer to my boys and Gabe than ever. I was standing in the line at the grocery store the other night, and my heart wasn't beating fast, I wasn't sweating, and I was not freaked out that the line was really long, and I just smiled and at that moment I realized how much we all take for granted. I guess I would never have appreciated everything that happens to me now. It all seems TOO easy. I did have a panic attack the other, but I took my calm supplement, chalked it off as a POWER SURGE of my brain, and went to sleep!
I still check your website and it gives me goose bumps when I read more testimonials of the people you have helped. We will be indebted to you and the rest of the staff forever for the kind words, and persistence from you (in my case ) and just knowing we were not broken forever.
Take care of yourself and stay cool.
Love, Janet (TEXAS)
I am doing well. Life has been very busy and haven't had time to properly reflect just yet, but I can say this:
I am Stillnox free, for I think two plus months and have lost the final withdrawals. I sleep most, but not all of the time, which is ok by me. I know that this too will resolve itself as my life slowly becomes my own again (manifesting big changes in my personal life). I have confidence in my body's ability to sleep again and do what it needs to do - incredible!. Its like re joining the rest of the world! I can't tell you how this feels, to have a basic belief in my ability to sleep again without being held ransom to these life/mind sapping drugs - they really were doing me in! It only begs the question - How did this happen to me in the first place??
Thank you dear Alesandra and your team. If you didn't personally understand it so well, I would feel frustrated in being unable to describe to you the extent of my relief and delight, as well as my enormous heartfelt gratitude to you and your wonderfully liberating programme.
I am healthy and expect to get even healthier as time goes on. I have not come down with the flu and chest infections which were a normal part of my winter - I am able to fight of bugs properly for the first time in years. Thank You. Thank You. Thank You.
with Love -
Anna B. (Australia) - Stilnox
I will always be indebted to the great help you gave me during a critical time in my life. You were there for me and sometimes someone like you may not get all the thanks they deserve. I will be forever grateful to you because my life has changed DRAMATICALLY! I'm not even getting anxiety attacks anymore (which I got for months even after I was off the meds). My body is getting stronger and stronger...and my brain function is getting better and better too. I can still tell there is still healing and rebuilding going on...but I don't feel like an anxious, sick, 80 year old anymore!
I saw you on Geraldo and how AWESOME was that. Thank you for caring and being a life changer!
Love and blessings,
Kristie V. (California) - Vallium
I'm not sure if I'll ever forget April 20, 2007. But, I am sure that I'll never forget June 1, 2008. April 20, 2007 was the night that, while on a leisurely walk with my dog and about 100 yards from home, I had an anxiety attack. I made it home, but the odd sensations persisted. So, my wife took me to the hospital. The emergency room doctor ran a barrage of tests, including some x-rays, before declaring that there was nothing wrong with me. Two days later it happened again. , I saw my family doctor the next day. By this time I felt extremely tired and “low”. He confirmed that I had experienced anxiety attacks, and that I was probably also depressed. He immediately prescribed two medications which I had never previously heard of, Xanax and Celexa. So, I took the prescriptions and filled them. I took one of each pill and within a short period, I felt far worse! So, I stopped them.
The next day I called my doctor back and told him how I felt. He told me that I was “profoundly depressed” and needed to check into the hospital. I followed his advice and did so. At this point, I really did feel awful. It never dawned on me till months later that I felt so much worse AFTER I took those two pills. Well, after spending 3 days in the hospital and after various other tests I was sent home already started on two different medications, Prozac and Klonopin.
By now, some time had passed, and some natural “calming down” had occurred. So, although I was still shaken up, I was feeling better. But, I was feeling some symptoms that seemed a little different than before, but I didn’t connect the dots that side effects from the Prozac might have been the cause. I was ignorant of such things back then. So, I continued on the Prozac as per the doctor’s prescription, but only took Klonopin when I felt a little worse. Something told me that something wasn’t right, but I trusted the doctor (again) so I continued with the Prozac. The dose was 20 mg.
After a few weeks, at a follow up visit with the doctor, when I wanted to discuss stopping the Prozac, I was told I needed to do the opposite. That nagging feeling of something “not feeling right” continued, so I followed his advice and upped the dose to 40 mg of Prozac. Within a few days, some terrible side effects, not the least of which was terrible jerking movements of the extremities, started occurring. So, I went back to the doctor and told him what was happening. He ordered me to reduce the Prozac by taking 20 mg one day, then 40 mg the next as perhaps 40 mg a day was too much. Then, while driving to work one day about a month after he reduced the dose, I started crying uncontrollably in the car for no reason whatsoever. I wasn’t even sad. When informed of what was happening, the doctor stated, “Well, just stop taking the Prozac. Its not working for you. I want you to take this instead.” The “this” was a free sample bottle of Pexeva, 10 mg. Now I knew he was experimenting!
The feelings I was having which led to the drugs were caused by fear of symptoms, the symptoms which were likely caused by the huge quantities of caffeine and artificial sweeteners I was ingesting. On a daily basis, I was ingesting ¼ to ½ a gallon of strong black coffee as well as a 2 liter bottle of Coke Zero!
So, now that I was sure that “I” was fine (I had ceased all ingestion of coffee and soda by this time), I decided to just slowly trim a little bit off each pill to wean off. Please recall that I had only been taking the Pexeva for 6 weeks at this time.
Over about 2 ½ weeks I tapered down off the Pexeva fine. When I was down to roughly 2-3 mg dose, I awoke one night in a terrible sweat, and couldn’t feel half my body. I knew at this point, that this could be withdrawal from the drug. And, I stayed on this dose for another 5 months, where I researched all about SSRIs madly. I then knew for sure that what I experienced WAS withdrawal and that countless others had experienced the same things when trying to discontinue the drug.
This is when, like other times to come, when an angel came my way. But, mine didn’t have wings (at least I don’t think so) and was named Laurie. I found Laurie on www.paxilprogress.org. She, like many others on that board, experienced the horrors of SSRI withdrawal. But, unlike so many of the others, Laurie also seemed to have a way out. So, after a number of emails back and forth, I had the number of Point of Return.
This is where I found my other angels! That very day I called and spoke with Alesandra, Andrea and Terry. They got my whole story (much like this letter is becoming) and their warmth and compassion radiated through the phone. I could tell that they were genuinely concerned and genuinely compassionate. To this day I am thankful I made that call.
It took me a few months to wean off of the Pexeva, which is nearly as long as I was on it before I started the taper.
And this is what brings me to the second date mentioned in the first sentence of this letter. I'm happy to say that on June 1, 2008, I ended the taper! To be ultra-conservative, I actually tapered the Pexeva all the way down to 0.05 g before ceasing it. Overkill perhaps, but I was taking no chances!
For general health, I plan to continue the POINT OF RETURN supplements for life (albeit in dosages reduced over what was required during the taper). In ending, I need to acknowledge that I could never have been so successful in tapering off of this drug without the help of the POINT OF RETURN program. While the products obviously help me with the physical parts of withdrawal, the emotional supported offered is equally as valuable. Just knowing there is someone to talk to if you need to provides a wonderful feeling of not having to feel as though you are “going it alone”.
Today, I feel absolutely fantastic. I know this ordeal is “behind me”. My favorite quote, and one in which I have endeavored to live by during this experience-- "Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared."
You have all been the single candle. Mine has been lighted from yours and for that I will be eternally grateful.
Larry J. (Florida) - Paxiva
Thank you so much for your quick response & the concern & caring that you have & give to everybody who calls on you for help. This program is truly a miracle & I don't even know how I found it, but it was meant for me to find. I can't give you guys enough praise for starting this program & for putting in all your effort to save people who need help so desperately. Please take care of yourselves!
Lots of love,
Lois P., (North Carolina) Cymbalta, Lorazepam
Hooray! I simply can`t believe I`ve been Citalopram (Celexa) free for over a week! I was first prescribed anti-anxiety medications and antidepressants 10 years ago and truly never thought this day would come. The side effects of the various medications have always been far worse than my original symptoms but trying to come off the medication seemed impossible. Having gone cold turkey several times with devastating withdrawals I was trying to wean myself off of the Citalopram slowly. Again the resulting withdrawals were such agony that I was thinking I would just have to increase my medication again and come to terms with the fact that I would probably be on anti-anxiety medication and antidepressants the rest of my life. I felt lost, hopeless and a complete failure. I was surfing the web in a last ditch attempt to find someone – anyone – who had withdrawn successfully from Citalopram and all I kept finding were more stories of other desperate people like me trying to withdraw but unable to. I then came across POINT OF RETURN's website and well…… as they say…….. the rest is history!!!!!!!!
This program is truly the way to freedom from these awful medications. Thank you Alesandra, Andrea and team from the bottom of my heart. Your patience, knowledge, wisdom and love were my saving grace. The debt of gratitude I owe you is something I can never repay. My family and I will be forever grateful.
I HIGHLY recommend this organization and program if you are looking for help with anti-anxiety medications and antidepressants. The only side affects of this program are great skin, glossy hair and a big smile!!!
If you are reading this and wondering about the program PLEASE don`t hesitate – start the program as soon as you can - it will be the VERY BEST thing you ever did! You CAN be FREE!
Rachel C. (Canada) - Citalopram (Celexa), Paroxetine (Paxil)
I was diagnosed with Hepatitis A in 1999. I felt as if I was dying. My doctor gave me Ambien to sleep. I was eventually told to take it for 10 days and stop for a day and then resume so as not to become dependent. Too late! I already was. For the next 8 years, off and on, I required AMBIEN to sleep. I tried herbs, melatonin, sleep teas, 5htp…everything that I knew about. I began to develop respiratory symptoms in the nature of repeated pneumonia, year after year, never making any connection with the possible root cause being AMBIEN. Doctors were puzzled about my depressed immune system when I was doing all the “right things”. As a result of the antibiotics for the pneumonia, I needed more AMBIEN. Yeast infections were next necessitating strong anti fungal drugs which required more AMBIEN. Strange digestive problems began to surface. Food became my enemy. Weight gains from eating almost nothing. Anxiety fought to control all my thoughts. I wondered at times…am I losing my mind? But I was determined to get off that drug and re-train my body to sleep on its own again.
The folks at POINT OF RETURN have so educated me now that I can look back and recognize why there were so many strange health issues. The cycle was debilitating and frightening, even tormenting. As a born again Christian I believe that the Lord Jesus heals all diseases. I was praying but not getting any “apparent” results. However, good things, it seems, take time. My healing was not to be just about me.
I found a doctor who helped me get off the AMBIEN by prescribing LORAZEPAM and I got addicted to it. After one year of treatment using this prescription plus other alternative treatments , he stopped and prayed out loud for me. As soon as he finished praying, he remembered POINT OF RETUR. My heart raced with excitement.
I contacted Alesandra immediately who helped me not only get started with the nutritional support my body would need to begin the tapering process from LORAZEPAM, but also spoke in such a calm and reassuring way that I was able to calm myself from the frustration and fear that had followed me like a black cloud for almost 10 years.
I followed exactly the protocol, kept my diary daily, and was able to get off that drug without losing my mind. When I told my doctor about my success, he hugged me and congratulated me over and over. He even reduced my bill ! Other doctors told me that most people cannot get off this drug or that they end up paying thousands of dollars to go into a rehab hospital.
I do discipleship counseling at my church and almost everyone who comes to me are on a “cocktail” of these drugs and feel awful. They have given up on doctors and feel hopeless. In addition to helping them recognize and deal with unresolved issues that may be contributing to their illness, I can point them to POINT OF RETURN, raised up by God for such a time as this.
I believe that God led me to POINT OF RETURNand gave me three precious angels to walk me through this difficult time in my life. Thank you, Alesandra, Andrea, and Terry. Freedom feels good.
Pam A. (TEXAS) Lorazepam
Dear Andrea and Alesandra - I just wanted to thank you both for the wonderful program you have developed. I thought I was at dead end and had no other options to successfully quit XANAX. After 2 seizures and no health insurance I didn't know where to turn. Someone told me about your program and once I spoke with Alesandra I wasn't as scared anymore. Your program helped me more than I thought it would. In a few months I was able to wean myself off completely with little or no withdrawal symptoms. It has completely gotten me back on the right track with every department of my life. I feel better than I have in years and being only 23, I have a long, happy life ahead of me. . I was young and wasn't aware of the dangers of benzo abuse until I tried to stop. Thank you from the bottom of my heart and I will forever spread the good news about your program and the dangers of benzo abuse.
Rachel D. (Connecticut) Xanax
Dear Alesandra,Terry and everyone at POINT OF RETUR. A few weeks ago I emailed Alesandra about the fact I had gone off effexor cold turkey and was suffering horribly. I called and talked to Terry and ordered the program. At nearly two weeks out I can say that I am feeling SO much better. The electric shocks to my head have diminished and the dizziness is pretty much gone. I am still rather tired, but not that bad. As a matter of fact I start a new job on the 6th doing what I used to do and left due to burn out and simple drug poisoning. I will be seeing to the recreational needs of the elderly in a nearby nursing home. Its smaller than the last one and should be alot easier. I also notice in a general return of being interested in living. I haven't been excited about anything for so long! Now I do look forward to getting out and meeting people like I used to. And while I do have tearful moments of grieving for what life dealt me, I also know its time to move on. Thanks for being there and letting me know,life needn't be hopeless, or without light and possibilities. I will stay on the program to the end and am sure I will continue to mend.
Don N. (New York) Effexor
My name is John. I am a 63 yr. old commercial photographer living in LA. 2 years ago i had a series of shoulder operations that left me dependant on valium. I had no clue how addictive they were. In Nov. of 07 i realized that i would have to double my dose and also that i did this, i would be "stupid" on the job. I decided to stop, not knowing what an ordeal I was in for. After about a week of stumbling, I found POINT OF RETURN on the internet. They saved my sanity and my life. They coached me and had product that really worked.
Tapering off VALIUM was one of the hardest things in my life. My sleep was totally messed up and without sleep, life can get pretty scary. Alesandra, Andrea and Terry were always there for me, always had time for my phone calls.
It has taken me 5 months to "get straight". I am clean as a whistle and sleeping great. Without POINT OF RETURN and the 3 angels who own and run POINT OF RETURN, it would have been a millions times harder, if not impossible.
John D. (California) Valium
Dear Alesandra and Andrea - I wanted to write to you today to let you that I have now been KLONOPIN free for 7 days! This is after being on KLONOPIN for 11 years! Thanks to your program, nutritional support and emotional support, I was able to taper successfully and with very little or no side affects. Incredible! I am now sleeping better than I have in months and years. I have energy to spare, and my hair and skin look better than they have in a long, long time!
I came across your website while searching for a natural way of dealing with the side affects of the drug and the tapering process. I didn't want to put any other medication in my body and that is what my doctors seemed to be insistent on. After 11 years, I wanted to see what the real me was really like. I had a lot of questions about the nutritional supplements, as I have tried the "other" program and found their supplements to be sub-par. Andrea answered the phone when I called and stayed on the phone with me until I had every answer I was looking for. She was very knowledgeable and very supportive of my efforts. She guided me on what supplements I needed and even sent along things I didn't order to ensure I had everything I needed to be successful. Thank you Andrea!
I recently had a super bad cold, but I was determined not to let that hinder my tapering process. I contacted you and Alesandra was wonderful and knowledgeable in what I could and couldn't take with my KLONOPIN to deal with my cold. She knew much, much more than my doctor, whose attitude was "Try it and see". How scary is that? I cannot believe that I waited so long to get off of the horrible drug.
I was blindly placed on the drug long ago when my son was born, and no one ever suggested that I stop taking it. I was told that KLONOPIN is one of the safest drugs that you can take, that it does not interact with anything, and I could go off it with ease. Boy were they wrong on so many levels.
I cannot wait to see what the future me will be like. Thanks to the POINT OF RETURN Program, I am well on my way of finding that out. I am also well on my way to a healthier and natural way of living. I can't thank you enough!
Debbie S. (MARYLAND) - Klonopin
Dear Alesandra – Vitality, Enthusiasm for Life, Energy and Joy – thanks to your wonderful Organization. I have recovered my zest for life after a very short time of following your Program and taking the wonderful all-natural products. Four months ago, when I was experiencing depressive symptoms and writing suicide notes due to the side effects of ZOLPIDEM (AMBIEN) the sleeping medication to which I had become addicted and tolerant, I was only getting 2 hours of sleep per night. I ended up in a psychiatric hospital where I was given MIRTAZIPINE (REMERON). I was already aware of the warnings on this drug and as soon as I was discharged, I withdrew too abruptly from both drugs – I now know from your literature that ‘tapering’ would have been a safer option. This led to very unpleasant withdrawal; nausea, panic, disturbed sleep, loss of feelings in my legs below the knees and extreme fatigue. It was at this point that I found your website POINT OF RETURN. I knew my prayers had been answered when I phoned and heard your voice of encouragement Alesandra. I instantly knew that I would find my way back. Your comforting words gave me hope and confidence.
Within 3 days of commencing the Program, the feelings had started to return in my legs and the nausea and panic had subsided. The fatigue lasted a little longer but each day I noticed a difference which gave me so much hope. Now I have the energy to engage with my 4 grandchildren, walk and play 18 holes of golf and have resumed my professional working life in a part time capacity and all this within 4 weeks of using the supplements. I now wake after wonderful restorative sleep each night ready to face the next day.
I cannot thank you enough for your wonderful support and kindness and wish you all at POINT OF RETURN continuing success in helping people worldwide to be released from the shackles of these terrible drugs. Yours very sincerely,
Eileen, (UNITED KINGDOM) Zolpidem (Ambien), Mirtazapine (Remeron)
I will admit that when I was looking for help and found your program what made me go back to your site and order, was all the people who gave feedback on your products and program on amazon's site. Not that your site didn't already explain your successes, but to find the same feedback elsewhere at a credible source that stands behind the outside vendors they use was comforting because I just didn't know if this was a scam. It sounded too good to be true. But guess what --- IT IS!!! Totally heaven sent - to save us from the fires of hell that hurt us more than just physically.
I am sure you already know what you mean to people going through this, but you are like a Mother Teresa to all who have suffered or are yet to suffer from the dangers of these "legal" drugs. I am more than tired of seeing these depression commercials that show people how to pop a pill to feel good again. When I started them myself, it was much more innocent and what I thought helped my life for so many years turned out to be my biggest downfall.
Like Gandhi said, "We must be the change we wish to see in the world."
I want there to be a day when we get away from popping all of these pills. Physicians don't even know what they are prescribing to people and how much harm they are bringing to their futures. There are still good pharma drugs out there that are needed for other important illnesses like cancer, heart disease, aids or MS, but the drugs you have listed in your program are advertised like they are wholesome or for recreational purposes or just plain fashionable. That is what really drives me crazy having gone through so much.
Just know, you guys are on my mind and when the day comes to make that really big step towards the truth about these drugs and that we will see the change.
Lots of love,
Nicole R. (New York)
Alesandra was the first person to offer the truth and then provide concrete solutions that reflected that truth.
I remember the first time I heard the warm, compassionate voice of Alesandra Rain on the phone, sharing her understanding, experience and wisdom. I felt hope….something I had not felt for a very long time. At that moment I felt myself awaken – awaken onto a path that was illuminated, one that held a future of health and energy and relief from the physical and emotional limitations of medications, addiction and withdrawal.
A light that had been dim inside for so long began to brighten, strengthen and expand. I re-claimed my power in those moments as I spoke with Alesandra, and that was a force of energy I so welcomed back into my life….into myself.
For months I had reached out in desperation to the medical community for help– to understand what was happening to me. I went from doctor to doctor in an effort to get help for the physical distress I was in and each one offered more drugs to control what they concluded as anxiety, depression and stress. Each drug they prescribed was addicting and/or created more problems in addition to the original. The doctors reassured me they were necessary and that I shouldn’t worry about longterm effects. When I stopped a very addictive medication on my own and suffered protracted withdrawal, the doctors simply offered more addictive drugs to help with the withdrawal symptoms. It was a never-ending cycle and I felt as if I was in the middle of the ocean screaming for someone to hear.
Alesandra and Andrea heard.
I feel stronger every day. I love nurturing my body, mind and spirit with the Point of Return nutrients. My energy is greater and more constant. My moods are evenly balanced. My sleep is deeper, more consistent, natural and restful, I experience greater and greater memory function and I feel more alert. My blood pressure is increasingly better and my heartbeat stays strong and steady. In additional to all of this, my skin is healthier and clearer, my hair thicker, shinier and longer than it has grown in decades. The most wonderful result of all of this is a great sense of peace and comfort, inside and out.
I feel energized and inspired, looking forward to accomplishing and experiencing my most inspired, passionate goals and dreams.
In the deepest appreciation and gratitude.
Peace and light,
Kristin W. (California) - Ultram
Life is going good. Starting week 10 of 18. Can't wait to get to the end of April. Going scuba diving for the first time in 2 years! What joy my heart sings. Tears are flowing down my face as I write this. Thank you for being there. My joy has returned in a way I never thought I would ever experience again. Thanks again for who you are.
Mark R. (ARIZONA)
Dear Alesandra, Terry, Andrea and Dr. Code,
Collectively, you have all changed my life! In fact, you’ve changed my husband’s life as well. Thank you so much from the bottom of our hearts for doing the work that you do so that we could get our lives back! My husband and I both quit drinking and smoking about 15 years ago when we decided to start having a family. We were blessed with 2 beautiful children! When our daughter was 6 months old, I went to my ob/gyn complaining of depression and frustration. I just felt that I was losing my patience too quickly and just couldn’t cope well with life. Out of desperation I began taking PROZAC and, I did feel better. Little did I know that this would begin years of being put on one antidepressant or another. I would feel better for a little bit and then go back to the doctor complaining that I just didn’t feel “right”. The medication was often increased or changed and I had even been sent to psychiatrists because the doctor felt they would better be able to help me. I had repeatedly been told that I had a chemical imbalance, was depressed. I would – every once in a while - try to get off of the meds but then felt awful. I didn’t realize this was from withdrawals and would go back to the psychiatrist with my tail between my legs. They would tell me that the more I take myself off of the meds, the more I would become dependent on them and that I may NEVER be able to stop taking them. Deep down, I always knew that something was not right but couldn’t figure it out. I felt ashamed that I needed these medications and the medical world definitely added to that shame. Depending on the medication I was on from PROZAC, LEXAPRO, WELLBUTRIN, EFFEXOR XR, KLONOPIN and a few others I can’t remember, I never felt like myself. The doctors couldn’t fix me and I felt like a human guinea pig as they tried different meds, different levels and different combinations. I was constantly tired and finally went for a sleep study. They diagnosed me with idiopathic narcolepsy – I now realize that was the EFFEXOR XR. They then put me on another medication for that which elevated my blood pressure. When I finally had to rush to the doctor because my blood pressure was 176/106 – I was chastised for being on such a high dose of EFFEXOR XR and told that the other medication was increasing my blood pressure to dangerous levels. In May of 2007, I decided enough was enough and reduced my EFFEXOR XR from as high as 300mg a day to 75mg per day and stopped taking the other meds as well. I stopped completely from 75mg to nothing and was absolutely miserable. I couldn’t sleep, was irritable, was crying constantly and just felt horrible all around. I simply felt that I couldn’t function and was in an incredible fog. The sad thing is that I never put it together with stopping the EFFEXOR XR until I was on a field trip with my daughter’s class and it dawned on me that I had stopped the medication too fast.
Out of desperation I started my search online and found POINT OF RETURN. I read EVERYTHING on the website and finally e-mailed them very late one evening. I was so shocked when I actually received a reply from Alesandra herself. She couldn’t have been more supportive, kind, patient and most of all a friend!! I started taking thenutrients and felt noticeably better within 2 days!! Here we are in February of 2008 and I still take both SUPPORT and MOOD on a daily basis as does my husband. We intend to start our children on it as soon as it is feasible. I’m still struggling with balancing my thyroid and hormones but have no desire or need to EVER get on antidepressants or anti-anxiety meds again!! I have over a hundred pounds to lose and am able to tackle that for the first time in a decade! I have never had such mental clarity before and have such a sense of being in the NOW. I never, ever realized what a fog I was in and how confused and just out of it those meds made me. I was just letting life pass me by. My husband and I have the best relationship ever and are both working on getting our health back completely. We have learned to actually communicate, as we are no longer numb.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Caroline and Rick, (GEORGIA) Effexor
I am 2/3 of the way through my withdrawal from antidepressants and things are working out well so far. I cannot believe how much your nutrients have combated the horrible side effects I had trying to withdraw from them in the past that made me go back to taking them. I look forward to getting to the end and finding the vigor I lost. Keep up your marvelous work! Be well.
Love to you, Nicole
Jan. 1, 2008 It's a new year and I'm finally PAXIL free! It's been quite a journey and it wouldn't have been as easy as it was, without your products and most of all, your love and support.
I can't thank you enough for being with me every step of the way. Through all the fear, through all the little milestones, up to this glorious victory!
For anyone who is scared, skeptic, whatever....believe me; this stuff works and I don't think anyone could have been more scared and skeptical than I was!
I was given PAXIL in 1997, for IBS. After going through two failed attempts at getting off Paxil, only to have the drug "poop out" upon restarting it the second time, I thought I was doomed. I thought I would either have to up my dose, or switch to some other drug. Neither of which I was willing to do.
I found the Point of Return website and, after a month of talking back and forth with Alesandra and relentless research, I finally ordered that first box of products. It was the best decision I ever made.
Thank you, again, for answering my constant barrage of questions, for being there when I was scared, for celebrating with me. And, most of all, for helping me get my life back.
May God richly bless you and help you to help others get off these horrid drugs.
Laurie C. (Ohio) - Paxil
POINT OF RETURN's products have revolutionized my health, which had been compromised for years due in part to the use of prescription sleep aids. After several months of using the POINT OF RETURN program I have never felt better, and I am sleeping without the use of medication for the first time in years. Not only have I experienced great success with these products, I have recommended them to many who have had the same results. I highly recommend the entire line!!
Pastor Stephen, Illinois - Ambien
Alesandra - I don't even know where to begin. I do know that I would not be where I am today if it had not been for POINT OF RETURN. I was at my lowest, not knowing what to do, and about to lose everything I had because of the medication I was on. I was taking 11 pills a day, having seizures, blacking out, in and out of mental institutes and emergency rooms. "What was wrong with me? " That seemed to be a million dollar question. Test after test, bronchitis, ear infections, diarrhea, vomiting memory loss, insomnia and depression plagued me. My husband and family were sick with worry and completely frustrated with me and I did not know where to turn. The doctors just kept prescribing me more meds, and I was sick with worry about my health. I woke up one morning, covered in blood, because I had passed out in the shower and did not remember a thing. I got on the computer, as a last resort, and found the POINT OF RETURN website. I just have two words to say about it "Thank God!" I started the program, and with MUCH support from the staff, Terry and Alesandra and any other poor soul that answered the phone, I made it! I have laughed and enjoyed life more in the past three months, than I have in the past 7 years. I have my life and family back. I have been working at a job now for 5 months, and I love it! I am the receptionist and answer more than 1,000 calls a day. It seems like a dream some days to feel so good, but I will never take life and people granted again. Life is good! Good luck on your path back to happiness!
Janet M., (TEXAS)
Today I am alive and I can hold my beautiful son in my arms because of Alesandra's help with her products and her compassion. Shortly after my son was born, I suffered from very serious insomnia. The therapist diagnosed me as postpartum depression. I kept refusing to take medication, but as my symptoms got worse and my therapist ever strongly recommending that I take antidepressant and sleeping pills, saying they have NO side effects, I started to take ZOLOFT and LORAZEPAM. Years back, the doctor tried to prescribed me ZOLOFT when he could not find out the cause of the symptoms I had at that time. I could not believe how he handled my case. I turned down his medical suggestion and stopped seeing him. (Well,I run away from his office hurriedly... ) These symptoms naturally disappeared. Much later, I found that all these symptoms and sleep difficulties were coming from a kind of genetic element inherited from my mother, which can be well handled by some natural, holistic ways, WITHOUT any use of medications. Shortly after one year of usage of these psychiatric medications, I started to develop flu like symptoms. I was put on antibiotics which sent me to the emergency room. When I finally found all the horrible symptoms were due to the side effect of the drugs, the doctors suggested to cut the drug by 50%, which sent me to another trip to the Emergency Room. I had serious vomiting and seizure symptoms and all other horrible symptoms all day long and all night long. That was the withdrawals. The doctor immediately put me back to the drugs.
Then I came across POINT OF RETURN. The program helped me how to taper safely and also educated me about food interactions, as well as her ever patient emotional support. I keep using some of her products to this day and I feel great.
The nutrients provided is what my body wanted. NOT THE MEDICATIONS !!!! If there is an evil, psychiatric drugs are the evils. And if there is an angel, Alesandra, her associates and company are the angels. My sincere wish and hope is that the public becomes more aware of the danger of the drugs and also as many people as possible can get out of the ever endless hell of drug addiction safely and continue to feel great.
Mayu T, (CALIFORNIA) - Zoloft, Lorazepam
I cannot begin to describe how grateful I feel over all you've done to help people like me. A week ago I was ready to go back on my meds after 1-1/2 years off them. Even after counseling to nutritional supplements & hormone replacement I felt like the walking wounded. I really wanted to deep six it. I began the program a week ago and wrote in my journal, "I really don't see the sense in taking this it won't work." Boy, was I wrong - even as I began to feel stronger - emotionally and physically I still walked with trepidation that the bottom will fall out. But my renewed sense of total well-being is banishing the thought.
With heartfelt thanks and warm regards - way over here on the east coast.
I am sure you are thanked often for your help. Personally, my own thanks seem like shallow words. If I were financially independent, a fat check would be enclosed. I am left with the only means I have to extend my heartfelt thanks and that is to acknowledge the depths of where I was and without you, where I would have remained. We all have a story to tell and it could fill volumes. Without going into all the details, I wanted you to realize how you have saved my life. During my years on multiple medications my physical health deteriorated. I had two back surgeries and brain surgery and still was in constant pain. I was even told by one psychiatrist that I was suffering from multiple personality disorder. What a joke! I was a sleeping zombie without one personality let alone several. I truly thought I was dying. I was alone. Yet somehow through fogged mind and depleted energy the raw instinct of survival kicked in.
In mid-May I called Point of Return and spoke with Andrea. She was the first ray of hope I had received in months. She understood and assured me that much of what I was experiencing was due to the prescription drugs I was on. She offered hope. She was patient, willing to help, kind and not pushy. By this time I had contacted other programs and none offered the type of genuine kindness she presented. I must admit that I had no faith in the products she offered. But amazing things began to happen immediately. I was sleeping through the night and not having any narcolepsy during the day and by this time I was on no prescription drugs for sleep. My family and friends that had been on guard for failure, recognized my vast improvement and began to embrace the positive results of the program. The reality is that each day improvement is seen. I cling to the first conversation with Andrea, there is no quick fix from this. It has taken years to get to this miserable condition from prescription drugs and it will take time to get away from them. BUT there is hope. As she has promised, our goal is to be able to live our days while gaining complete health to their fullest.
You have given me that hope. It is tangible, it is reachable. Each day proves that and with that a new better life emerges. I am returning to health. Your light, but a pin prick months ago, now fill my days with its brilliant glow. I thank you for that hope, for my life and for your selfless mission to reach out and help us through kindness, understanding and dignity.
Kathy G. (ILLINOIS)
Firstly I would like to thank you for saving my life. The products that you sent me had a truly amazing restorative effect, and within a few weeks of taking them, I was feeling a lot better. I also enjoyed reading Alesandra's wonderfully generous autobiography, Deeds of Trust. I think to self-disclose to this extent, in order to help others was a beautiful thing to do. Thank you once again and all the best.
I went to the doctor a few weeks ago (the doctor who did my gastric by-pass) and for the first time since I had the surgery (7-2-01) he said I was HEALTHY!!!! I was so excited!! The best part was telling him that I was no longer taking ANY medications. It's been 18 months since I'd last seen him and as you know, it's been about 15 months since I've stopped the medications. He said that all my labs were great and I looked good! I've been waiting a long time to hear that! I'd been so sick for so long and to hear that I'm was doing so well....especially OFF all the 12+ meds I was on was great. Thank you so much for your help. It took both of us and a few others to get me there but I couldn't have done it w/o you. Thank you again. And remember, if there's anything I can ever do to help...please let me know.
WOW! Well, I guess the sky is the limit. I have an incredible testimony... seriously! My Mom was bi-polar and committed suicide, my brother did the same. My oldest son was permanently brain damaged from meningitis as a baby and then my middle son was killed seven years ago. After my brothers suicide in 1994 I started the roller coaster ride of antidepressants, tranquilizers and even pot and ecstasy. By the time my son was killed in 2000 I was a true addict. Then I was in mental facilities and truly a menace to all around me. My husband didn't give up on me and neither did my pastor. I was determined not to be labeled bipolar or looked at as insane forever. I have tried for five years to work with my whole health specialist in Houston using supplements and vitamins but as it turns out they were all the wrong thing. I thought I was truly doomed until I found Label Me Sane! That night back in April when I found the website I was almost scared to have hope! Although I still have a way to go, I have literally come so far! From several different meds to only one and I'm past halfway on that one! My story is one of determination and hope. The Lord has been my light and He has guided me to this answer. I am willing to do whatever I am able to do. When people come there for training, what is involved? I travel alot with my husband for business, church and pleasure, but anything is possible in my life right now. In all reality I should be dead, but for this cause I live!
-Wendy H. (Texas) - Klonopin, Xanax, Ativan, Restoril
I wanted to let you know that I am doing well, and working. I even ride the train to downtown every morning then transfer to the bus!!! This is coming from a woman who did not even want to talk on the phone a few months ago! Every day is a new miracle for me. I cannot believe I was ever that person. I now take over 500 calls a day at my new position, and I am the receptionist. I love to be around people again, and only have positive things to say. Everyone always wonders why I am in such a good mood. I just tell them I am happy to be alive. That works for me! Happy Fourth of July. I will definitely celebrate Wednesday in a whole new way. I will celebrate it as "My Independence Day!" Thanks again for all of your support.
Last week was a record week. It was one full week without any type of break down. My energy level gradually improved over the course of the week and I had positive thoughts of the future. This past week was the first week in months that I was able to sit in front of television without it sounding muffled. I am really grateful for the small changes that are taking place and am looking forward to the continued improvements that have yet to happen. I am praying that this week will be as good or better than last week. With Love - Susan C, (Oreegon)
Alesandra and all staff. Good morning to you. Here is an update on my life thanks to you guys and Dr. Bill Code. Anyhow my life is good and I've been Psychiatry Drug Free for quite awhile now. Because of you product, my mind is clear and I am peaceful and productive. Congratulations on job being done well. It has been easy and I feel very well. So again, I say to you all Thank You.
Warm Wishes, Debbie
I can't thank you enough for the time that you give so freely and your dedication in helping me (each of us) to feel better both mentally and physically and to better educate ourselves on not only the prescription drugs but also the many other things that can interact with our body's chemistry. I don't even trust most herbs or things without reading more about it. Best of all, I feel soooo much better!! Thank you!!! My only difficulty now is not sleeping well but once I do fall asleep, I sleep very soundly. I have so very many thoughts going through my head that I think part of my problem is - thinking about all of what I want to do to catch up for lost time. It's sooo very exciting to think about LIVING again!! Thank you so much for all of your help and time.
Take care, Caroline
If you were to look up KLONOPIN withdrawal symptoms, my name and picture would be right next to it. Struggling through a myriad of symptoms, wavering faith that any type of normal recovery even existed and trying to stay focused on the internet for searches and answers out of KLONOPIN hell... I finally found POINT OF RETURN. I am the biggest skeptic you will ever have the pleasure meeting ;) BUT... Desperation talked the talk and walked the walk at this moment in time... Alesandra Rain called me 10 minutes after an email submission that asked for help. She stayed on the phone with me for half an hour. Halfway through that call, I had my Visa out ready to order their products. During this time as well, Alesandra had: eased my fears, wrapped her voice and words around me like a life jacket and felt I had found my force that KLONOPIN now had to deal with. From the moment I started the program, I experienced relief. The RELAX was helping to squelch my KLONOPIN ridden anxiety just moments after ingestion, the SLEEP helped enable me to re~establish my natural sleeping pattern and dissipated my nighttime issues (vivid nightmares, body burning, etc.), the MOOD was slowly pulling me out of "cog fog", and the mightiest of all products, SUPPORT was doing it's job to help support my body. Three Rounds of SUPPORT and MOOD, 2 months later... I am symptom free. Although the nutrients are top-notch and work extremely well... One cannot deny the power of healing through the: voice, emailing and phone calls, overall support and love from Alesandra Rain. She was and to this day still has been the largest proponent toward my recovery. Some day I will have the: pleasure, honor and greatest gift of meeting Alesandra in person one day.
Thank the universe for POINT OF RETURN and Alesandra Rain.
Monica K. (California) Klonopin
Alesandra - Thank you for the support you gave Stephanie during the program, I really believe that your ready availability and the "personal touch" were a tremendous help. So keep it up and may God bless you and your work.
Michael S. (Canada)
Hi All! This is my "Birthday Week" and I'm So Excited! It’s not only m birthday tomorrow but This Week Marks my ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY of When I Started to Change My Life and Get Off ALL the Medications I had been on for so Long. Last year, when I woke up on my birthday I didn't know what day it was until a family member called to wish me happy birthday. I was so out of it on medications. That was more than just a wake up call - it was a wake up call that changed my life. That very day I started my search on the internet to gather information on how to get off everything I was on. I remember finding a website that talked about how to get off WELLBUTRIN and from there I found POINT OF RETURN. I remember your kindness as I was coming down off the meds and I remember getting your book, Deeds of Trust in the mail with Alesandra’s hand-written words of encouragement on the inside. It was those words of encouragement, your e-mails and our conversations on the phone that kept me going through the roughest points in the withdrawal. Because I couldn't afford the supplements until a month and a half after I had started coming off the medications, I had a rather interesting time coming off but I did it. Simply saying "THANK YOU" has never been enough - but it's all that I can think of to say to you for everything you've done for me. Now, a year later, I am doing so much better. I have my rough days but I think that we all do and it's just part of life. After coming off the meds, I went back to school for a semester and I did quite well considering everything I'd been through and the amount of time (approx. 8 years) I'd been medicated. I started working again (two part time jobs) and was able to pay off several bills including what I still owed on the car that I lost last summer because I could no longer afford it. Most importantly though, I've been able to help my son in a way that I don't think would have been possible had I not stopped the medications when I did. I would not have been as successful in fighting for him NOT to be medicated had I not been where I have been in the past and had I not come as far as I have, drug-free. I am now able to say that he brought his grades from 4 D's and 1 C to 1 A, 2 B's, and 2 C's. And, the best part is that he did it w/o ADDERALL!!! I love that part. It took a little bit of everything to make it work but he did it - a little determination on his part, some support from me and his counselor, and taking the MOOD, SUPPORT & SLEEP all came together to help give him what he needed to do better in school. I've also been able to help a very dear friend of mine avoid getting started on medications by getting her on your program and I am happy to report that she is doing very well. Well, it's late but I wanted to share my joy & happiness with you all because without you, it would NOT have been possible. I cannot thank you enough. I will always be grateful.
Thank you again. KC
I'm so grateful that you put those photos up on your website of Alesandra. That took a great deal of courage and letting go of ego - not an easy thing to do so I applaud you. If you didn't show us what it looked like, we'd never know what it looked like to live through your journey and emerge with such presence and grace. You are our shining star..... xxooo L.M.
Last summer while I was visiting southern Ontario, I developed respiratory problems that sent me to emergency. I was diagnosed with a panic attack and given a prescription for ATIVAN. The so-called panic attacks continued and I continued to take the drug as prescribed. Within weeks it was obvious to me that I had become physically addicted to the drug –ATIVAN. I was horrified – and concerned – until I found on the Internet a way to help myself withdraw from the drug – the Point of Return Protocol.
At first I was skeptical – as I am about many things I see on the internet. But I decided I had nothing to lose by making a phone call. I can remember the morning I first called and spoke to Alesandra. She understood that one of the side effects I was experiencing was shortness of breath. I was in near panic mode as I had severe allergic asthma even before I was prescribed the ATIVAN. Now ATIVAN was exacerbating those symptoms.
I doubted at the time that the program would work for someone with my health history and the thought terrified me. The doctor I was seeing at the time fueled my doubts when he remarked, “You will be on that drug the rest of your life.” The Point of Return Protocol was my last hope for help. As I listened to Alesandra, I knew I had found someone who had been where I was and knew what she was talking about. Her voice was calm and reassuring relaying a confidence to me that I no longer possessed due to the drug.
In just those few short weeks of being on that drug I had come to feel that I had lost all control over every aspect of my life. As I hung up the phone, I clung to Alesandra’s re-assuring words like a life-preserver. I now had one single-minded thought in my mind - to order the books and supplements for the Protocol and start the program as soon as possible. That was in September of 2006 and since that time, I have finished the Point of Return Protocol– proving that doctor wrong. It is a joyful time for me – one which we (my husband and I) will be celebrating with friends at a breakfast/brunch this morning.
My interest in life is returning and I am rediscovering my sense of purpose. I am forever indebted to Alesandra – my many phone calls to her during the last couple of months of my program were met again with her compassion, knowledge and understanding. Alesandra walked me through a change in compounding pharmacists as well as a necessary change in doctors, and pretty much did the problem solving with me when I was unable to do effective problem solving myself. I had not fully realized how much of my life had been taken from me by the drug until one day in April my husband remarked to me, “You’re in the kitchen!” to which I replied, “Aren’t I always in the kitchen”. His reply stunned me: “No – you haven’t been in the kitchen for months!” Had I not come to understand at some point – the terrible harm the drug was doing to me, I don’t know where I would be today. Even my weight was affected – a size 7 all my life – I rapidly gained weight to a size 10 on ATIVAN. I owe a debt of gratitude to the Team at POINT OF RETURN and want to extend my sincere thanks as well to Dr. Bill Code for his very vital work in co-developing the program as well as Terry and Andrea Crocker for their helpfulness to me while I was on the program!
Stephanie S. (CANADA) - Ativan
Alesandra..I love you! I am holding on..believe me!! Thank you for all your support, love and determination to see me through this.. in my darkest and weakest moments you were there..you were there when I didn't have my mind, fear filled my brain and the tears just kept shedding day after day..only you knew my pain ..no one else..I thank God for you..but especially for the unique person you are. There are not many people in this world with your devotion and commitment for another human being..YES Alesandra Rain is a gift from God! My acupuncturist is the founder of acupuncture and the first to liscensed in this country. Author of many books as well. I am going to share your book with him. I want him to read it! Stay with me.. all my love..OH YAH.. I am coming to the West Coast. Love you Cindy
The program is great! I am drug free and shrink free. I only see my Cardiologist and I like him. He has me in good health. I took him your book and he actually read it. We have discussed it and he sees the advantages to the program verses western medicine. Also have been doing acupressure for 3 hrs. a week for almost 3 months. I don't know if you remember but I told you about the loss of my sweet SAM last Oct. I now have 2 kids they are 6 yrs. old Brother & Sister they are my joy. Must Love Dogs and Cats too! I rescued them and we make quite a family. What I do know about you is the you are honest and passionate about POINT OF RETURN. Also compassionate and care a great deal for others. Warm Regards, Debbie C.
Today was my 3rd GREAT day!! I worked in the garden, watered flowers, ironed the clothes in the laundry room that were left there when the bottle of VALLIUM was tossed in January. I have been doing things I never imagined I would do again, even went running with the chow chow. I am coming to the West Coast to hug you!
Christi .V, (California) - Valium
Amazing, isn't it? I am feeling better than I have in ages and down to 25mgs ZOLOFT from 75 when I started with the program and coordinated with MD, then the 20 LEXAPRO is left to go... I want to get rid of this belly! Played an hour of tennis today in the sun it was GREAT. Playing again on Thursday - All a MIRACLE!
Lots of Love and Thanks
L. - Zoloft, Lexapro
Terry - I want to thank you and Alesandra for all of your help. Today, I feel so alive. It just amazes me that I could feel this good, since just last month, I was laying in bed begging God to just end all of this. I felt I could not take the withdrawal one more day, but it just kept going through my mind that Alesandra said she just knew that good things would happen to me. And they have. After 15 years of my life being on hold, I am doing things now I could never imagine I would do again. I mowed the lawn, worked in my garden, went to a family reunion over 1,000 miles away, AND the BEST : I got a new job today!! This was my first interview after having to quit my last position, which I was very unhappy at. I start in the morning, and it is what I was doing before I started passing out and having seizures. I would not have believed that life could be so good after suffering through childhood being molested and abused by an alcoholic father, and then raped at the age of 11. Then, I felt like I had totally abandoned my family with the pills which I thought I could not live without, and then knew I could not live with them. You just don't know how it feels for the fog to have cleared, and how close my sons and husband and myself have become. It is nothing less than a miracle that I found this website. I tell anyone and everyone of the dangers of these medications which are legal and so misleading. I just wanted to thank you both from the bottom of my heart, and so does my family. My boys say they finally have their mom back. That statement alone means the world to me.
I am someone who has gone through the tapering program offered by POINT OF RETURN and I am here to say that this is great, and if you want to come off your medication safely, this is the way to go. This company and the people who work there are wonderful, caring people who are extremely knowledgeable. It is a complete step-by-step, day-by-day, week-by-week program on how to safely taper off these medications, co-written by a physician. They will support you all the way through and they are truly there for you every step of the way. I am a testament to this program. I am now 4 weeks off of PAXIL and couldn’t be feeling any better. I tried to get off this medication in the past with disastrous results, having to take a leave of absence from work because I was not able to function due to the terrible withdrawal I was suffering. I literally was bedridden due to the withdrawal symptoms, and I did not come off cold turkey. I had these withdrawal symptoms from very slowly tapering off.
When I found POINT OF RETURN, I was skeptical at first and afraid, but I went for it and I was able to come off the medication with only minor dizziness at the end of the taper and that’s it! I was able to come off very comfortably and easily, without missing one day of work. Any time I needed support and I reached out to them, they responded to me right away and helped m. Also, most of the people who work for POINT OF RETURN have gone through drug withdrawal and they can relate to what you are going through. It’s easy to say, just go to your physician and they will help you taper off, however, unfortunately, many times the withdrawal symptoms you are having are misdiagnosed by the physician as you having a “relapse” because many physicians still do not want to admit that withdrawal symptoms from these medications exist. This then puts the patient in a “trapped” position. They want to come off the medication, but when they try to and go to their doctor with the withdrawal symptoms, the doctor diagnoses this as a “relapse” and then ups their dosage, leaving the patient believing they will never be able to get off the medication. Don’t get me wrong, some people need to be on these medications, and I’m sure in some of the cases, people are relapsing, but in many of the cases they are going through withdrawal.
C.C. - Paxil
My journey started in 1997, due to stomach problems, which my doctor called Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). This caused anxiety and my doctor prescribed PAXIL, that he assured me was a "new and improved" antidepressant being used for everything from chronic pain to stomach problems like mine. After two years on Paxil, I had gained a significant amount of weight and suffered from night sweats. My doctor told me that my symptoms were common side effects and I could stop taking it. Three days later I had severe vertigo, uncontrollable crying, diarrhea and electric shocks running through my body. I went back to my original 20 mg dose and stayed there until 2006. I started researching and decided to taper Paxil using the liquid form and wound up with horrible withdrawal symptoms that make 1999's episode look mild.
In late 2006 I was desperate and surfing the web when I found POINT OF RETURN. It sounded too good to be true, but I called and Alesandra Rain was my first contact. I told her my tale, cried and expressed my fear. She was so understanding and patient, as she had been through the withdrawals too. I finally got the courage to order their program a month later. I started feeling better after about 7 days and by November I was ready to taper. I am down to 7 mgs of Paxil and have tapered with virtually no side effects and will be free of Paxil in December. I thank God everyday for finding Alesandra and POINT OF RETURN. She's literally held my hand through the majority of this, as the horrible fear of withdrawal is always in the back of my head somewhere.
I wouldn't be where where I am today without these products or the staff at POINT OF RETURN. I look forward to a happy, drug-free life. A Life without having to worry about "how I feel" all the time. And most importantly, I've lost the 50 pounds I gained, which has made a huge difference in my cholesterol. I've referred a number of people to POINT OF RETURN, who have had great success as well. I know first hand the horror of withdrawal, and I know first hand the hope POINT OF RETURN offers.
Going off of any medication cold turkey without any supervision is very dangerous! I know, because I have tried to do that (which was, I might add, the advise of my doctor to do so). The problem with doctors sometimes is that they are trained to treat symptoms immediately and they have plenty of incentive from drug companies to use these drugs as a quick “fix all”. It is up to us (who better to advocate for ourselves?) to not jump at a quick fix, but to look into other means to deal with our issues. I am not a doctor, but I think I have enough personal experience with Antidepressants to share what I have personally endured. The only thing this drug did for me was to numb me from any and all feelings. I walked around in a semi-zombie state. This is no way to live. I got tired after about 5 years and one unsuccessful attempt to go off the PROZAC, so I turned to the website POINT OF RETURN. I was not coerced or talked into anything. All I received was genuine caring for me as a person. I can tell you that I finished the taper program over a month ago and I feel fantastic! I kept in touch with the staff at POINT OF RETURN during the whole taper (in fact, we are still in contact with each other). Any time I needed encouragement I got a response, even at night and on weekends! I highly recommend this program to anyone who feels it is time to regain their life. This is a sensible approach to tapering. It is done slowly and precisely, with the support of your doctor and with natural supplements. The staff at POINT OF RETURN has devoted much time and energy to this approach with the aid of a doctor. I’m not saying not to consult your doctor about it. I talked with my doctor beforehand and he was surprised to hear of the withdrawals that one can/will go through by quitting cold turkey or too rapid a pace. My doctor has been willing to listen to my plans of tapering with the POINT OF RETURN program and has supported me in doing so. I’m not saying that medication is never warranted for depression. I believe that it is sometimes necessary. All I’m saying is I think sometimes people jump too quickly into something that is very difficult and risky to quit from.
I encourage anyone who is wishing to come off their Antidepressant to not do it alone, but to partner with your doctor and a company such as POINT OF RETURN who have the personal experience who will support you through it. It can be done safely - I’m living proof!!!
Diane - Prozac
Easter was Awesome, about 25 people. No family issues or bad in my direction... it is the positive change perhaps within me. This KLONOPIN took it's toll, but now I have a more positive outlook into things and I’m not taking much for granted. When I find myself in a negative place, I pull myself into more positive thinking - quickly. The nutritional support offered by POINT OF RETURN have been a huge part of my success! I cannot thank you, your company, employees, and products enough! My appetite, energy, mood, sex drive, personality.... everything this horrifying med did to me is increasingly coming back. I actually have emotions back and inflection in my voice and enthusiasm. I was actually cleaning my car inside and now eating yogurt, then off to clean the outside of the car. My car has been neglected badly thru all this hell.
YEAH TO POINT OF RETURN AND THE NUTRITIONAL SUPPORT!
MUCH LOVE TO YOU ALESANDRA!
M.C. - Klonopin
Holly continues to feel great, and sleep like a baby. I'm also taking a little Support daily, for general nutrition-and feeling GREAT and Holly is even mixing a little in our cats' food!
Hi Alesandra, I've been in New York for a week now and despite the miserable weather I'm feeling wonderful. Your products have put me well and truly back on the path to sanity, I'm even sleeping better now. I really believe that without your help I probably would have gone insane, I can't thank you enough. I don't know whether I had told you but I was going through a difficult time in my life, which of course caused a lot of my anxiety and sleeplessness but that now has all come right and I'm much calmer and happier than I've been for a long time. I'm confident that I'll now be able to move forward under my own steam. Thanks again for your kind words, help and support........ and AMAZING PRODUCTS. !All the best to you, be happy and well.
First of all I want to thank you for creating such a wonderful program along with all the email and phone support you so graciously provide! Your staff is so compassionate and loving. I couldn't have made it through titration without your help. You have mentioned that you give the Support to your dog. I have a 40 lb. beagle mix that I want to start on the PROTECT as well. After her eating years of commercially prepared dog foods, I would like to help her detoxify from all those chemicals. I've been researching on the internet for homemade food for dogs and plan to slowly change her diet to a more natural one. Also I read your book, "Deeds of Trust" and I am just stunned by all that happened to you. How you made it through all that without the wonderful products that you now have is amazing to say the least. God truly has a plan for your life. You saved my life during a very dark period of withdrawing from PAXIL. It is so clear to me also that you have a special connection with our "furry friends." I cried when I read about your little Selsie. (You will see her again some day.) I can relate very well to your experience at Cirque Lodge with the horses as I work with them in a therapy program. They are such wonderful creatures with their willingness to serve mankind. Also thank you for being so wonderful in helping my brother John.
With great respect and love,
I wanted to say hello, and thank you for supporting me through my worst days. I have had two wonderful days, and keep telling my husband I have not felt like this in years. I actually had a picnic on Sunday on the picnic table we put outside 6 months ago. Yesterday, I went to the grocery store, made dinner and went for a walk with my husband, and did all the laundry. I was exhausted, but not in pain. It was GREAT. I am so thankful for your products and support. I have to commend you once again. Life is not only good, it is GREAT!!!! I hope you are having a good week!
Love – Jan
Alesandra - It late, unusually late for me. But I seem to have a very extra amount of energy tonight. I don't any clue to as why. Last night was the very first night that I can remember for the longest time, that I actually that I slept straight through without waking up (for anything). I mean It might have only been almost six hours but it was solid. I woke up and it was very unusual that I just got with it and got going. Even though I had a challenging and interrupting day, it seemed to turn out at least without recognizable pain.
I have had a glimpse of a little light today, gladly accepting and realizing that this could just be the beginning of something good. I shall see. My toe is getting better and I am starting to get that spring energy. This has all come about ultimately by just adding some different isolated nutritional food products to my diet. I don't know how things will go in a day, or week from now, but I know that there has been a reprieve and I shall hold steady! May your day continue to be blessed. It's off to bed for me. I am excited. A heartfelt thanks!
With love John.
I am very happy to report falling asleep easily last night for the first time in 6 months. I was just on day 2 of Step 1 on Method 1 and your products are nothing short of a miracle. I woke up feeling great and knew for the first time in 6 months that I was going to overcome this nasty withdrawal from Xanax. My stress & anxiety has gone down and my mood is GREAT. You told me I might be feeling better soon, but it's so hard to trust again after being mislead by doctors. You were right and I am very excited to continue on the program because after last night's successful sleep, I now have the confidence that I will just keep on feeling better and better. After 6 months of misery I have myself back. Me, my husband and my 2 children are so grateful! You saved me and I'm forever grateful for the work you put into this so people like me can have a quality of life during the taper and off the drug! I just can't thank you enough!
I love you,
I have been on your program for just over a month now and I have to tell you how much better I am feeling!! I have so much more energy and the energy comes in a good way, it's a calming type of energy. I feel much more alive and am able to cope with issues in my life better. I go to school full time and was so worried about being able to continue without having the feeling of having to run out of the room in panic. None of this ever occurred. Alesandra..........you are such a sweet lady and the compassion you have for others going through this is so apparent when I speak to you on the phone, I know every other staff member shows the same compassion that you do. There is such a "realness" emanating from all of you at "POINT OF RETURN", and I couldn't be more grateful to have all of you as a part of my journey back to health. I recommend this program to anyone who is trying to get off of all those addictive meds that the doctors so quickly prescribe. It works!!! As so many of the other testimonials with show you as well. Love to all of you, and keep up the good work!!
All is going very well. I'm feeling virtually stress free, the panic attacks have stopped, my mind is a lot clearer and I'm off the Lorazepam. Amazing!!! Thanks so much for your wonderful products.... I really am feeling more like my old self, and in such a short time too, incredible!
I successfully freed myself from the evil PAXIL and I couldn't have done it without POINT OF RETURN. Thank you so much for making it possible for me to do this!
Love to all of you
Katie C., Paxil
I hope this special memory of my loyal, loving companion (the one on the left) conveys not only how connected I am to canine companions but all living creatures as well. I long for the day when another kind creature will let me share their space and time and company. I share this photo allowing you to see me just prior to when my sister, her husband, her son, and myself all became mysteriously ill and have been since. Many of the medical labels began to appear in my medical records that I always knew were unsubstantiated, but I was at the mercy of the medical profession. I did not know at the time that the boat builder up the street was dumping his solvents into the ground and they were leaching into our well. We lived about 1/2 mile down hill from where this was going on for years. It wasn't until I suggested that our water be tested that we became aware of this curse. We have been battling this since. I feel so comforted and secure to have met you and your staff. Now I have someone who knows and has compassion. Every one who answers the phone is so kind and mercy can be felt in the exchange of words. You have a gift. A special mission in life. I include all of the loving staff that you employ. My hat is off to MJ and Andrea. All of you have been entrusted with the most valuable gift on this earth. That is "LIFE". Thank you ever so much. I was once told that if I was in need of a hug then give one to someone else, thereby getting one automatically. So please listen when I say that I need you and so do scores of others that you haven't even met yet. You are loved in the most purest sense for what you have committed your life to. Millions are suffering. I see them every day at work. They have all but given up. I was getting close myself and so was my sister. I find the hardest thing to express in words is feelings and emotions. Especially on paper. But be fully aware that your collective efforts have zeroed in on that smoldering ember inside of me. The ember of hope that was growing ever so cold as the days have passed and turned into years. I can't dance right now and haven't really smiled as I am in this picture for a long time. Too long. But our connection has gently blown a smooth breeze onto that ember and thoughts of your example helps me open my eyes each morning and at least plant that first pinky on the carpet. May you continue to be blessed.
With Respect & Love, John
Thank you so much for this awesome product. I remember calling you last Thursday all drugged up, and confused asking for help. I thought I would never come out of this hell. I had just gotten out of class that day, being all confused and not being able to concentrate, and I knew that it was that evil PAXIL causing me to feel this way, Well, I'm still taking it, but with SUPPORT, MOOD, RELAX and SLEEP. Believe it or not, just three days of taking this amazing product, I feel better, just as I was before. I hadn't felt this way since three years ago, when they put me in PAXIL for Anxiety/Depression and all those horrifying feelings. My doctor doesn't even care about me, in case my depression would come back, he would put me on a higher dose. Guess what? I got an "A" on my first exam in Microbiology, where as if I hadn't been taking SUPPORT and MOOD, I would score much lower, because I would simply sit in class like a "zombie" trying to comprehend every word coming out of the professors mouth. So, thank you so much, and I will definitely keep in touch with you.
To everyone out there who are taking Anti-Depressants, Anti-Anxiety, or any other meds, definitely try this product, you will not regret it!
Jenev (California) Paxil
I just wanted to say thank you for everything . I am recently down to 8 milligrams of PAXIL and I FEEL FINE. I can't tell you how grateful I am. :)
K.B. - Paxil
I am so thankful for this second chance for true restoration. My attitude and outlook are even brighter and positive than when on the drugs - Thankful and Hopeful. Bless you all. I do at the right time plan to come to the classes / workshops offered eventually. I thirst for knowledge and for the betterment of our earth and those in it. God Bless you and take care of yourself. My husband and I appreciate all of you so much.
Well I am just letting you know, that on Dec. 11th. at 10.04pm, I took my last dose of poison, now I am finally able to bid it goodbye after a very long struggle. I am now free from this BENZO MONSTER that took possession of my body and paralyzed my mind. FREEDOM! I can't have a better Christmas present. First it was XANAX then ATIVAN. Words cannot express how grateful I am for your valued support, your encouragement, a shoulder that I could lean on. Only God knows what may have become of me, if it were'nt for you and your staff at POINT OF RETURN. Saying thanks is not enough. May God's blessing be upon you. Continue to do what you are doing. I can remember my helpless cry when I first called your office and the assuring words you spoke to me, has finally come to pass. I hope that some day, I may actually meet you in person and give you a great hug. I have since learned so much about staying healthy. FREE at last, FREE at last, thank God almighty I am FREE at last.
Love You All
Roderick (ST. CROIX) - Xanax, Ativan
Dear Alesandra - I hope that 2007 holds great blessings for you. You are a wonderful person - you truly are. Being as determined as I was to get my life back, I know I would have made it off the drugs eventually but I could not have done nearly as well as I did had it not been for you or your program. Your words of kindness and many reassurances have given me the strength to keep going when I've felt that my progress had been stalled or that I had suffered a set back in my healing. As always, I thank you for everything. Although I don't know what it could be at the moment ~ if there is ever anything I can do to help you in anyway, either as you & your staff seek to help others or you personally, please do let me know. I would love the opportunity to help others as you have helped me. Please give my best wishes to Andrea and the rest of your staff as well.
Happy New Year! - Kacey
Hope you at POR are doing great. I know you are helping a lot of people. I always check your web page to stay updated. I am wishing you a very good holidays and a happy new year. I am doing well, I have had a lot of good days now. They are coming more frequently now. Thanks so much for changing my life. I am 100% drug free for 6 months and I am returning to enjoy life. I am doing exercise and playing my sax. Also my job is great. Even I have to improve some details, I am sure I am on my way. Happy Holidays!
Thank you for your courage to get this whole program up and running so people like me have a safe, and sane way out of prescription drugs.
Thanks again, Julie
Somehow, with the help of God, your story "Deeds of Trust" and your products and support - I made it through, bar none, the most difficult experience of my life. It has been 4 months since I last had a pill enter my body. I am still trying to get my sleep cycle back but my symptoms are now manageable. I am so grateful to have had you as a role model to help me get through the darkest times of my life. It is so unbelievable to me that doctors hand these drugs out like antibiotics, they are literally poison. After accomplishing (as you put it) the single most difficult task of my life) I feel like I can do anything, nothing phases me anymore. I am back working as a Fire Captain and enjoying every minute of my drug free life from Klonopin, Ambien and Lexapro.
Thank You - Chris
We are doing great. In addition to tapering our daughter off FLUOXETINE, Our son read your material and went off an Anti-Anxiety med that he has taken for a number of years. He was put on it due to an Aspergers diagnosis to help him interact socially. Actually he has become more social without the drug! I am so disgusted that I put my trust in a medical profession that advised me to put my kids on drugs. Shame on them! I would be happy to help others!
Thank you so much for your cooperation. I successfully withdrew from Effexor with your company's help.
Sincerely, R. B. Effexor
/ \\_@\-'/ \
Alesandra, I can't thank you enough for everything for your words of encouragement and many acts of kindness since I found POINT of RETURN have kept me going many, many times. The difference that you have made in my life as well as the difference that utilizing the Support has made in how I function has been the catalyst of so many, many positive things. Not only has it changed my life but others are inspired by the change that they have seen in me. My best friend's father who saw me last week for the first time in years said to her after I left that "your friend has her eyes back". The realization that her father (who is not one for detail and who has been off & on medications/drugs himself) noticed that I was THAT bad hit me really hard. Him saying that was like saying that I had disappeared; that who I was as a person was lost at one time to the drugs but that now, off all medications, I was back and he could see me for me again. A little on the profound side I think and something that will be with me always. The best part is that it may have hit him just as hard - she told me later that he may be considering POINT of RETURN or himself to help him get off whatever it is he's on now. How awesome is that?? :0) There are so many other positives that I could be here all day. I just hope that I can someday, somehow return the kindness that you have shown me - if not to you yourself - to another. K.C.
Alesandra Rain, hello, I spoke with you on I believe Sept. 19, 2006 regarding your taper program. You were wonderful, caring and compassionate - I thank you dear one. Our stories were very similar as I had read your book, Deeds of Trust. The conversation with you was uplifting and very positive, you said" I can get better" and I ordered your product. It was on my door step the next day I have been taking it and for me it is nothing short of a Miracle! I humbly thank you and would love to be a part of POINT OF RETURN in the capacity of a volunteer in my area! I trusted you and by the time I called you I was at rock bottom and not trusting people as I had been a victim of mind abuse from prescription drugs from a Psychiatrist! Because I did hear you on the telephone and I trusted you. I am feeling GREAT! My mind is clear!
So Color Me Happy and Grateful.
Love, Deborah C.
Incredible Program I used this program to taper off three drugs and it worked perfectly. They were extremely kind and answered all my questions. I recommend it to anyone who is struggling to get off tranquilizers or antidepressants.
Just popping in to say "hi". :) I'm about 2 months Fully off Meds & am Doing GREAT ! (I'm still amazed!) I've had some pretty decent stresses in recent times & thought I may have trouble since I no longer had meds to numb my emotions. but I am fine. Very well actually. I haven't gotten the chance to write in a couple weeks but will be back to that soon. (amazing how hectic life can get, huh?) :) It's very therapeutic so far. Though it is taking me a while just because some things are hard to write about and it can take you back to a bad place. Though I'm strong enough to re-visit those bad places & leave them behind me. My fiancee & I recently adopted 3 kittens from the rescue house. (yes, THREE! holy hell!) They're great! We're busy "parents". We now have a zoo. 3 kittens, 2 scorpions, 1 snake & 1 fish. :) (I'm an animal person.) Thanks again, to you & everybody there! Trisha has been so great to talk to when I've called to re-order. I'll be in touch! I hope all is wonderful there! love always!!!
So far so good. Have been taking this stuff for about 10 days now and I am just amazed. Have actually had moments were I felt like myself from years ago. still have a long road ahead but am having better days now with more energy. Now have to get rid of my other health problems. Seems like everybody should be using this product.
First off, I went back to work yesterday for the first time in almost 5 weeks off due to withdrawals!! I went in for 4 hours and it went good. I was really exhausted when I got home but that's OK. Progress, albeit slow but still wonderful progress! Haven't hung my head over a toilet bowel for 1-1/2 weeks! -Anonymous
Also, I just want to thank Andrea and Alesandra for your time and commitment to us out here. Alesandra, your story is so riveting and almost to scary to read since I am in so much fear because of withdrawals. I skipped to the end of your story and I could totally feel what you were feeling because I was in hell myself for almost a month. The fear and anxiety was gripping. I thought for sure I was forever separated from God and demons were pecking on my head. It was as though they were torturing me and mocking me. My family patiently tried to reassure me I was only in withdrawal and their was nothing sinister going on. I didn't believe them. Now that I am coming out of it I am starting to believe them. It's interesting how our minds work and who our personal demons are. Yours was your ex-husband and mine were of Biblical proportions! You are an amazing, amazing woman. How you got through those months of withdrawal leave me speechless. Part of me feels like I am going to need therapy to deprogram myself from the mental torment of withdrawal. Like you I am sure it was just a moment to moment thing. I thought for sure I had dropped out of reality for good. How terrifying. God Bless my mom. She has been supporting me through my nightmare and taking care of my poor father with Alzheimer's. She is an amazing woman. Thanks to everyone else who is a part of your amazing mission. You sound like such a neat soul.
With love- A.
I praise this company for the quality of care that it has given me. They have gone beyond the normal service of selling a product; they have given moral support by calling back and talking with you about anything when help is so desperately needed. They have spent numerous hours on the phone with their clients giving helpful advise and offer of ideas to encourage people. I am currently on prescription drugs. I am slowly tapering off of them. If I had not run across POINT OF RETURN’s website, I fear where I would have been or ended up. The PAXIL and ZYPREXA have devastated my life by doing the opposite of what they were intended for. I am so grateful for this group of people. They have dedicated themselves to people like me and have given hope where there was no hope before. I am honored to be able to commend this company 100% as a value to community world wide. I just pray that there will be others like myself that will find help through them as I have.
Sincerely yours, I. J. Paxil, Zyprexa
After 3 days on the program, I called Alesandra because I was so excited and had hope for the first time in 9 months.... Why, because I was able to go to a restaurant & with my daughter. I was able the next day, go to a movie & not fear I would go running out in panic. I was able to walk without exhaustion & slept - not perfect, but better than I had in 9 months!!!!!!!!!! Please believe in this program, I have searched for months to find help, knowing that the ATIVAN was the problem but how do you get off and who helps. again I can not urge anyone enough out there that there are people who care!
Thank you thank you thank you! I will keep you updated.
Alesandra... hello again! I am now fully off my meds! Can you believe it?!? I totally kicked ass! I feel great & I want to thank you... thank you ALL for everything! You all have been so supportive & helped me a lot. Finding your website was such a blessing. I had lost hope. Which is rare for me because I am usually an upbeat, positive person. Ii will continue on the supplements as I know I still have some detoxing to do. I KNOW I will do fine though. It's so weird, I am feeling emotions again. At first I thought I was just a "hormonal" female, but then I realized I am starting to feel again. I never had a problem with happiness, but the other emotions were gone while I was on meds. It feels so good to feel again. It's a little adjustment, but a good one. Before I started meds I had begun writing about my life, journaling it. It hasn't been the best & I had gone through a lot more than most ever experience. Abuse of all kinds, drug & alcohol problems, suicide attempts, self mutilation. I used to be so hateful & angry about that, but I was trying to turn it into something positive. Like MAYBE if anyone else read it (like a family member or friend... cause I don't really have the ways or means to get anything published) MAYBE I could help them. I have come so far, I wanted to help someone else. Try to at least. When I started meds I stopped writing, I just didn't have it in me. Maybe now I can start again. It's difficult to write about, but therapeutic. Maybe no one will see it... but at least now I can write again. it's been years. Ii have not forgotten about sending pictures. I've just been bad about getting them developed. :) I will soon.... then you can put a face to the voice & name. :)
Again, THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH!
You are doing an amazing thing. I am very grateful! Ii will be in touch. Lots of love, always!
Hi everyone! Well, it's been a complete week without medication and I still feel great - I seem to feel better every day - more energy, more upbeat personality - basically like I used to feel before I was on the medication and even better. I was thinking that I want to go visit my doctor here within the next month or two and let her know how I am doing and that I was able to come off of PAXIL practically symptom free (only had a couple of days of dizziness). Would it be alright if I order the workbook and give that to her? I want to go in and let her know how everything went and then give her the workbook, along with some other information from your web-site and just basically ask her to please read the material and please consider giving her patients another option when coming off medication and to educate her on some things before she even decides to put people on medication. I realize this is a long shot, but I feel it is my duty to share this information - if she's not interested, I will share it with other physicians. I want to do what I can to help get this information out there. Would there be any problem with me giving her a workbook that I purchase? Also, do you guys ever contact doctor's offices to let them know about the program or do you run into too many physicians that won't even consider it?
Any word on Oprah???
Love, C. - Paxil
Hi - I just wanted to let you know that I feel much better - no more dizziness and no more brain zaps. I really had a good day today. Today - was my LAST DAY ON THE MEDICATION!!!!! I just can't believe it. I am so happy and excited. I should know by Monday how I will feel off the medication - it usually hits me within 4-5 days of a reduction as to how I will feel......I truly think everything is going to be fine. No matter what - I AM NOT GOING BACK ON THE MEDICATION.........I know now that I have plenty of support to help me through anything that may happen!!! Also, I just started a cognitive behavioral therapy program this week. It is called "Attacking Anxiety & Depression" by the Midwest Center for Stress & Anxiety. I don't know if you've heard of it or not, but I guess hundreds of thousands of people have been helped by the program. They teach you how to change your internal thoughts and self-talk and also how to relax through a relaxation cd that you are to listen to over and over, so you will eventually be able to subconsciously pull up the relaxation method whenever you need it. They've been in business since 1984. So far I like it. It is a 15-week course. You focus on one cd per week, and then there is a relaxation cd, coaching dvds and a workbook. I think this, along with these supplements, should help me stay on a healthy, medication free course. I just want to say thank you so much, to all of you, for your support throughout this ordeal, and especially to you for getting back to me so quickly on everything. I just can't tell you how much that means to me. The other day when I e-mailed you about the dizziness and brain zaps, I was starting to get a little nervous, and when I saw that you e-mailed me right back, I mean within minutes, I just started crying because it meant so much to me - that someone who understands was right there waiting to help me. I just can't thank you enough for that - THANK YOU! I'll keep you posted on how I am doing.
Love - Cheryl
Thanks so much for all your help and support on the phone today! You guys are really my lifeline right now and the only ones who seem to really understand! You're a God-send and I thank Him for you all each day! God Bless!
I have now been on the POINT of RETURN products for 3 weeks. I have felt the anxiety and agitation dissipate and I am thinking better.
I just wanted to let you know that I am very well! I have only 2 more days of the taper, and then I am FREE of the PROZAC!!! I can't believe it! I will continue to take the full amounts of the supplements for the 45 days afterward. I would like to stay on the supplements after that, but I need to know how much to take after the 45 days. I just feel so good!!! I can't thank you all enough for helping me through this! I can't believe that I only felt negative just one time, and that was because I forgot my supplements for a couple of days in a row. I will keep in touch with you and hope you will do the same. Give all my thanks and love to everyone there!
Love, D. - Prozac
Thank you so much Alesandra! You have truly been like a guardian angel sent my way. I am so overwhelmed with your desire just to understand this disease, and to reach out and help "the little people' like me. I appreciate your patience with me, as I am aware that you are very busy. I am curious though- Will you ever be coming around the Ohio way to lecture? I live in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio, and would love to meet you and your co-founder, and staff if that time should ever come about for you. I will keep you posted to let you know how things are going.
Thanks again dear soul, Brenda
Hello there! I just wanted to let you know I am down to 1/2 of my original dose of Lexapro (down to 5 mg from 10) and I feel GREAT! The program is working beautifully for me. My mother lives in the building next to mine & even though I'm 30 she's still a mom so she worries. when I told her I was going to wean off my meds AGAIN she panicked & prepared for the worst. (she went through a lot with me. before, during & while weaning from meds caused a lot of pain in the past. I have over 100 self inflicted scars on my body to show it.) So she was scared. But she is now amazed, she can't believe the difference. I was worried the depression would come back, now I'm not worried at all cause I feel great!It's wonderful! and I can't thank you enough! I got officially engaged last sunday at a padres baseball game. (that's where my fiancee & I had our 1st "date" last year, he remembered.) He put it on the scoreboard, got down on one knee (while wearing a tuxedo t-shirt, so cute) and proposed. it was great! beautiful ring too! so, life is good. He is a very understanding, wonderful man. Coming from where I did, growing up in a world of all kinds of abuse I never knew this kind of unmedicated happiness was possible. Thank you for all the positive support & for offering a program like this. I will keep you updated. I KNOW I will be just fine.
Lots of love, S.C
Andrea and Alesandra are great, and have been great to me in my experience. They believe in their product which in turned made me a believer. I am happy I came across their website. Thank you so much for being there for me whenever I wanted. You are great.
The past couple of days have been great. If I can just get on top of the sleep thing - Life will be good. I know the sleep will come around though. What's sad is this happened when I dumped the REMERON about two years ago. I suffered through horrific withdrawals all summer long, lost tons of weight and just waited for the withdrawals to ease up. But, I didn't have anything to support my body so the withdrawals just hung on and I had to give in and go back on Remeron... NOT THIS TIME... Honestly, I don't even feel any type of agitation or blue feelings the past couple of days. This is amazing and I am tapering the Klonopin again. I'm very serious about wanting to go to work with you guys. I want to help people get beyond this nightmare and hopefully keep them from even having to experience this in the first place. When you have a little time I'd really like to start thinking seriously about how I could get connected, trained, screened for LMS... Gotta run.
Thanks for all you do!!!! -A - Remeron
This is for Terry.... Thanks so much.You took the time to listen and talk to me today even though it was obvious you were very busy.What a small world: you went to Southwest Texas in San Marcos right? 2 of my cousins graduated from there. And you also have friends here in S.A.. Our conversation was so enjoyable although I started crying. Fortunately for me Angels or Bodisattvas like you and Alesandra and Andrea cross my path quite often. People who help me in some unselfish and often wonderful way just when I need it. I think I'll conquer this obstacle and I'm determined to help you all to reach out and offer a helping hand to others going through another hellacious withdrawal from prescription drugs! You can count on me....that is when I get through this thing :
Thank You again!
Sincerely Cheryl E. (TEXAS)
A "rush" of new clients is a good thing and shows that there are so many people out there that need your help. I think you are doing a fantastic job!!! I have already planted some seeds in some acquaintances about your web site and looking to alternative methods of dealing and coping with whatever got them on the meds that are now literally taking their lives away. I can't thank you enough for sticking your neck out to help those who feel there is no hope left.
I just wanted to let you know I'm still alive and kicking! More than that, I am feeling wonderful!!! I just started week 3 of the taper and do not notice anything out of whack :)
just wanted to check in. Been taking the SUPPORT for the last 3 days. Always hesitant to report good news but I do feel an increase in energy. I feel stronger during my workouts. Sometimes I get this feeling that this is sort of what I used to feel Like. Its very confusing but I am hoping that it is working. My issue has always been the depression. Thank you again for all the support! GREAT PRODUCT!!! HOPE YOU CONTINUE OR EVEN IF AS I HEARD ADD VITAMINS TO IT!!!
THANKS GUYS, YOU’RE GREAT!
I've managed to get off my med completely. Quite honestly, it's hard for me to quantify the value of your service and support throughout this. So, first of all thank you very very VERY much for all the help so far!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I took Relax yesterday for the first time. I took it in the afternoon. I feel asleep and woke up at 10:00 pm last night. I took another one before bed and woke up this morning feeling much better.
THANK YOU, THANK YOU!
I have started the pre-taper program. I am on day 6 and everything is going well. The Cherry Extract works great - should I take it each night even if I'm not having a problem sleeping.
Thank you so much!
Dear Everyone at POINT OF RETURN - It has only been a short time since I have been on your products and not only do I have horrific OCD, I was addicted to pain killers for my back problems for the past 8 years. Even though it has been a rocky start and I am sure I will crash again and have to call you guys for reassurance, I just wanted to let you know how well I am feeling right now. I have tried to get off painkillers for over 8 years even though I still suffer from horrible back problems!!!! I am no longer craving and obsessing I am going to an acupuncturist for pain management. I hope and pray I will continue to stay well and it will only be a matter of time before I can help my fellow sufferers here on the east coast. May God bless each and every one of you!
Sincerely, Tammy N.
Just want to let you know that I received the nutrients this afternoon. I've read the information. And thanks for everything. well I have good news to report. Today is the first time I have not had banana in over 6 months. Neither did I have any of what I must avoid and I felt so much better. I can't remember taking any cherry throughout the day either. I was able to work for the entire day. I don’t know where the energy came from compared to how I felt yesterday. I cant thank you and Alesandra enough for working with me so patiently. Earlier this week I was just about to give in because of how I felt. But you stuck with me and gave me hope and I know you will be there with me until and after I take the last dose of Xanax. many many thanks. Give Alesandra my warmest regards.
Sincerely - Roderick. Xanax
*Testimonial results may vary person to person. Testimonials statements do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Point of Return.
*While great care has been taken in organizing and presenting the material throughout this website, please note that it is provided for informational purposes only and should not be taken as Medical Advice.
*Because prescription medications can cause severe withdrawal reactions, do not stop taking any medication without first consulting your physician. The decision to quit any medication should be discussed with your doctor and with their consent and support.
*The program outlined in Point of Return is not meant to substitute your doctor, instead it is to be utilized with your physician to help you with your drug withdrawal process and with his or her consent.
*The statements on this website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The products and labels mentioned / sold are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or illness.
*Always consult with your healthcare professional before starting any diet, exercise or supplementation program, before taking or stopping any medication, or if you have or suspect you might have any health problem.