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New here and struggling no appetite for three months


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Hello,  I'm new here. I'm suffering the recent loss of my dad who was over in England.  Also our only son moved away to start his first job in another state. He's been with us for 27 years homeschooled and then home everyday from college. The last two years all of his classes were online at home. There's more. I just can't write it all out.

I began having anxiety and panic attacks when our son moved out in October and they have been brutal, every day. I have had no appetite since then either. In December My dad went down hill ( he had liver cancer) and died, I was alone as my husband was working away. It's all been such a trauma. I've gone from 117lbs to 96lbs. Has anyone else dealt with a complete loss of appetite for so long?  Every day is a nightmare of trying to push down food. 

I'd be grateful for any words of support. I have no close friends and only my husband - who is doing his best but doesn't really understand what I'm going through. I feel so alone and don't know what to do. 

 

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I'm sorry for your losses. 

After a trauma involving a bad relationship, I ended up losing weight to the point where I thought my heart would give out on me. My situation is different than yours I think because I just stopped eating altogether until I was forced to get help. It got better once I started to cope with what had happened. But I think your weight loss is definitely a symptom of your grief. 

My brother moved away last year and I did get anxiety from it. He's the only person I have in my life (other than my cats) so I completely understand the anxiety and panic you are dealing with, especially at a time like now. Talking helps, it's just very hard to find people to listen. 

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I am so sorry for your loss.  I'm sure it didn't help that your son moved away as well.  It hits us all differently.

After my son went into the Air Force, my husband suddenly passed, unexpected, barely 51, we were supposed to grow old together, that was the plan.  Now over 16 1/2 years later, I'm still alone.  It took me years to process this and deal with the anxiety and lack of sleep, I finally accepted help from my doctor with Buspirone (Buspar) and Trazodone 50 mg to sleep.  
Parent Loss: Continuing Their Song
Continuing beyond physical death
Physical Reactions to Loss
Physical Grief Symptoms What's Your Grief
Tips to Make Your Way through Grief

 

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I can only emphasize what Novi and Kay have said already, and I encourage you to have a visit with your primary care physician ~ to rule out any possible physical causes for your lack of appetite, and to learn if any medication might be prescribed to help with your anxiety and insomnia. Grief is hard work, and it's important that we keep ourselves in as healthy a state as possible so we can cope with all its challenges. That means paying close attention to our need for adequate rest, exercise, hydration and nutrition. I'd also encourage you to investigate whatever in-person grief support services might be available in your community. ❤️

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Thank you all so much!

Not having anyone to talk to is very hard. I do have my Mother in Law. She talks to me everyday and prays for me on the phone. My only other support, other than my husband, is another online forum. It's not a grief forum but the people there have been very good. But 'm afraid they'll get sick of me after a while. I have no one close by.

I did go to the doctor. She put me on Buspirone  5 mg for the anxiety but it doesn't seem to be helping. She raised the dosage to 7.5 mg but I began having terrible side effects -waves of feeling cold then profuse sweating.  It was worse than menopause. So she has lowered the dose back to 5mg again. I have found a little relief from a supplement: L-Theanine. 

Yesterday I had a tele-visit online with a therapist. It was our first visit. She is going to contact me today with a schedule of future visits. She gave me a number to call for a grief support group. I was only taking the L-Theanine when I thought I needed it most but she advised me to take it twice a day as directed since it may keep the edge off the anxiety. I'm not functioning very well at all. Every small thing is overwhelming. Just taking a shower is a major accomplishment right now. I usually take care of all our farm animals but my husband is having to do everything as well as work his regular job. 

The lack of appetite is so worrying. It is adding greatly to the anxiety as I just don't feel hungry or have interest in anything. I'm having to force food down. A little of this and a little of that all day long. I'm managing to hold at 99lbs.

I'm trying desperately not to go on an SSRI, having been there before when my mom died. It was a nightmare. It took a year to slowly wean off them with lots of side effects and withdrawal symptoms. Once I was off them I have been fine for the pastt nine years. I really want to try to get through this without too many meds. If I could just calm down enough to eat.

Thank you again. It's always helpful to hear from others who have been through something like this.

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Mine is 15 mg.  It's a very mild anti-anxiety med, not an SSRI, very safe, I've been on it since 2008 with no side effects.  It doesn't alter your brain (which I did not want), but it takes the edge off so you can better cope.  I haven't had an anxiety attack since I've been on it!  It doesn't leave one feeling numb or robotic, which I didn't want either.  I take twice a day, morning and bedtime.  I was prescribed 3/day but have only taken two for years.  

As with any anxiety med, it can take a while for full effect.  (I'm small too, 105 lbs.)  I'm sorry you're getting the sweating, I haven't heard of coldness with it.  :(  I'm glad you've found a supplement that seems to be helping.  I struggled with anxiety all my life but loss/grief brought it to a whole new level!  My heart goes out to you.

And we won't get tired of you! ;)

My daughter uses Melatonin, it doesn't work for me.

 

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First, forgive my self centeredness. I'm so sorry for the losses you have all endured. I know I'm not the only one to go through these things, This intense anxiety is all consuming at the moment.

 

MaryT thank you. After calling around I was able to find a Grief support group. The next session starts on March 1st and it will be online through Zoom. There was another one that meets in person but with the virus I'm trying to stay away from groups of people. The lady I spoke with was very nice. We talked for a while.

kayc, I'm so glad the Buspirone is working for you. I really had high hopes for it. I've been afraid to raise the dose again since the waves of cold and sweating was so bad. I've decided to go back to the doctor tomorrow, if there's an opening in her schedule. Someone told me that they were prescribed the B/P drug Propranolol for anxiety and it helped her. She said it took away all the symptoms so she was able to get back on track and she didn't need to stay on it for very long. Apparently it's used off label for performance anxiety - musicians, actors etc. I'm going to see what the doctor says. I really need relief from this. It's all day every day and I'm hardly able to function. I do a few dishes and put wood in the stove and that's about all I can handle. Even just feeding the cat sends me into an attack of shaking like a leaf. I've never been this bad before. And my appetite is just gone. I'm used to taking care of the whole farm when my husband is working.

There's  still  my dad's estate over in England to deal with. It feels overwhelming even though it's in the hands of a lawyer and a friend is taking care of most everything over there. There's no way I could have gone over and handled it all. Looking at pictures of his belongings and having to decide what to keep and what to let go really affects me. 

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I totally understand your anxiety, I am the same...my sister has dementia and everyone wants me to be the executor, but it's beyond me at this point as I'm aging and know my brain and what I'm already dealing with is a lot with no help...she hasn't shown any of us her will, put anyone down for POA, her bank account, etc.  As she lives alone I'm afraid it'll all go to the state anyway as she'll likely need full time care in the latter stages...we already went through this with my mom, and two+ years at the dementia care facility ate all the $ from the sale of her house with only $2,000 left for cremation/burial.  

Sometimes we need to do what we need to for ourselves and in early grief especially it is that time!  No apologies needed, I didn't see you that way and truth be known, that is a prerequisite for grief!  It is essential during this time that we focus on ourselves, the pain is so great and overwhelming!  It's not selfish, rather what we NEED to focus on in early grief, we're struggling just to muddle our way through this!

I really hope this other option helps you with your anxiety!  It's so essential to find something that helps it.  Let us know, okay?

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welcome.  You've already received a lot of great feedback but I would second Marty's recommendation to make sure you hydrate, as well.  It's easy to overlook signs of thirst, especially if there is crying involved.  We do have to replenish those fluids in our body, especially in winter when the air tends to be dry.

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Magnesium helps and you may need salt replacement.

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