Medications and Weight

I’m feeling pretty down about my weight right now. I wanted to check in and share my experiences lately.

I was doing pretty good. I was to the point where I had 9 pounds to lose to get back to pre-Logan weight. I was feeling better about myself, even though it’s taken forever to even get to that point.

I’ve shared in the past about my experiences with depression and taking antidepressants and the unfortunately side effect: weight gain. Well I’m back to that spot again.

A few years ago I realized that my issues are more with anxiety than depression. Yes, depression was a big issue for me in my teens and twenties but in my 30’s it’s been anxiety. Like on a scale of 1-10, I’ve been holding steady at like a 7 for anxiety! I definitely had postpartum anxiety.

After I had Logan I was sleep deprived and anxious and because of my history I was super vigilant about looking for signs of postpartum depression…so much so that I totally missed the fact that I was suffering from PPA. Mostly because it wasn’t even on my radar. People talk so much about PPD but rarely PPA. I didn’t even know it was a thing until I started to feel like I was going insane.

I was so anxious all the time. The biggest thing for me was anxiety about SIDS. I had no reason to be anxious about it but I became obsessed. To the point where I wasn’t sleeping at all in those early months. It was not a healthy situation. I talked to my therapist and she eventually said it was time to go back on my medication. So when I stopped breastfeeding at 10 months PP, I went back on my Wellbutrin.

Wellbutrin has been my go-to medication for 20+ years. It’s the one that has worked best for me and THANKFULLY NO WEIGHT GAIN. It’s basically the only one out there that honestly does not cause weight gain.

Well, good news: no weight gain for me. Bad news: the medication that has always worked in the past suddenly didn’t work — instead, it super aggravated my anxiety. I was crushed. I went off the medication per my doctor and he suggested we try Prozac.

I was reluctant to try it because I couldn’t really find a lot of information about Prozac and weight gain. My doctor said it was usually “minimal.” But I decided to try because my anxiety was so bad. It was exhausting. I started the Prozac last November and once it started working, it was like a giant weight was lifted. Suddenly my anxiety was gone. I was able to think more clearly and manage the anxiety that came up. It was really eye-opening how bad my anxiety had been.

Fast forward about 4 or 5 months and my doctor decided it was time to increase the dosage a bit.

10 pounds. That’s how much I’ve gained since taking the Prozac. It was slow at first and then the dosage increase bumped it up pretty fast. I talked to my doctor and he said that 10 pounds sounds about right for that. He still called that “minimal.” I know 10 pounds is minimal to most but it’s A LOT to me. Especially in a short time.

I’m unhappy about this, I’m frustrated. Especially considering I’d been doing so well. And then on the flipside, I keep thinking “is losing weight worth the crippling anxiety?” Or is it better to just be like this and have my anxiety under control?

I talked to my doctor and he had a few suggestions:

  1. reduce the prozac back to the lower dose and see if that helps
  2. try Cymbalta instead (the side effects seem iffy to me)
  3. try Buspar (it’s an older medication and apparently doesn’t cause weight gain–but…..who knows)

I’m honestly not sure what the right decision is. It’s clear I need something to help manage the symptoms. But…at what cost?

So that’s the update right now. I still haven’t decided.

4 Responses

  1. I’m really sorry about that. I had a terrible time with my second baby. I was terrified that someone would break into our house and I would only be able to save one child. After a month of near sleeplessness, I finally told my mother who found me a metal baseball bat and told me that if someone broke in to kill them. And that seemed to break the spell. At least until the kids started school and the anxiety came roaring back.
    My kids are grown (no one ever broke in so I was never tried for man slaughter) but I still have intense periods of anxiety. Which I cope with by —eating.
    Everyone is different but if I were that young mom again, I would run, not walk, to a therapist who could help me live a happy joyful life and 10 pounds would just be the cost.

    1. Thank you for sharing your story! It helps to hear from other people who experienced similar things. It’s not talked about very much and it can be very isolating. I did have to laugh that your mom got a baseball bat. Good solution! 😉

  2. Ugh, Lisa. I’m sorry you are having to go through with that. I get anxiety about the dumbest things, and always at night in bed. Like the feeling like someone is in the house or there is a fire or worse – that I won’t wake up ever again. That probably doesn’t help with my insomnia…

    Honestly, 10 pounds for peace of mind seems if not a good trade-off, at least an acceptable one rather than crippling anxiety. Hope you get things figured out!
    Lori recently posted..What’s Blooming!

    1. I got that too. Horrible insomnia and anxiety and racing thoughts so I could never fall asleep. So much better with the prozac. In fact, I’ve been off the tylenol PM for a few months now and I fall asleep “normally” for the first time in like a decade!

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