NUMB the movie: documentary on SSRI withdrawal

I posted the below post in April of 2010. It seems this film was never released to DVD and it’s going to finally be available in January 2012. I noticed mention of it in a few places recently, most notably at Kip Central.

It’s good that a visual documentation of the possible horror of antidepressant withdrawal will now be available. It seems some people learn better via film and video.

I’ve shared an excellent video on benzo withdrawal here: The Accidental Addict — Benzo withdrawal documentary.

Not everyone ends up in acute withdrawal syndromes when they go off psychiatric drugs. But it is much more common than is generally recognized among practicing psychiatrists. Most of us who end up with severe withdrawal syndromes have to rely on one another for help as the medical establishment is rather clueless and tends to blame a “pre-existing condition.” Slowly they are catching on, but we’re still a long way from competent care in the process of withdrawal should people have these sorts of problems.

Our biggest strength is educating ourselves.

This is what I posted in April 2010:

Finally released for this sneak preview.

Minnesota filmmaker Phil Lawrence tries to wean himself off anti-depressant medicine, to avoid the pills’ effects of leaving him emotionally “numb,” and documents the profound changes that affect him and his family. –City Pages

After years of living with side effects, a suburban dad puts his life on the line as he attempts to break free from the physical and psychological grip of the most prescribed drug in the United States – Antidepressants.

What would happen if you decided to stop taking antidepressants?  This film documents the drastic effects on the filmmaker’s physical and psychological well-being after giving up his medications in his quest to stop feeling “numb.”  It also reveals the impact his journey had on his family as well as revealing startling information about antidepressants that the pharmaceutical industry doesn’t want you to know.

Phil always wanted to feel emotion and now he feels it too much. It’s painful and riveting to watch a man’s life unravel on video. But it is also incredibly compelling because so many of us know someone whose life has been touched by antidepressants and we understand the dilemma.

In the end, Phil makes a haunting decision as he realizes that he’s trapped in a physical and psychological dependence on the most prescribed drug in the United States.

End of post from last year.

Now he’s got other footage up on youtube too. If you’re not familiar with the risks of antidepressants this film will most likely be a must see:


there is more footage on his youtube channel.

For information on safer psychiatric drug withdrawal see here: Withdrawal 101. Do not withdraw from your psychiatric drugs without careful preparation. Be aware that MDs often do not understand the nature of withdrawal syndromes and it behooves you to become familiar in order that you might help your doctor support you.

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