Hi Ladies, I'm currently on risperdone 1mg and am experiencing emotional flatness and adhedonia. What is your experience on antipsychotics and did your feelings come back after you weaned off? I'm feeling really scared thank you.

24 Replies

  • Hi nchyme, thanks for your post, please don't feel scared - we are all here for you. My experience of antipsychotics (Olanzapine) was that I was definitely very flat on them, emotionally speaking. My Dr described it as a chemical restraint almost, "chemically flattened" were his words, which really resonated with me. When my dose started to reduce, with support from health professionals and monitoring etc, this unpleasant side effect also reduced. My feelings did come back, and yours will too.

    Take care, xx

  • Thanks Hannah- lots of people online are saying that they beget got their emotions back and it is scaring me. I feel so flat and I hate it.

  • Hi how long have you been taking? ive been on and off risperidone for five years now. 1-2mg, sometimes 3. Its the only medicine ive taken, and it always helps me. 1 mg is a low dose, which is a good thing...stick with the medicine if you can. Best to chat to your dr re symptoms esp if youve just started so they can monitor. For me the drug outweighed the symptoms. And sometimes the symptoms could be explained by other causes eg i once got dizziness, but it could have been due to low blood pressure..ive never had that symptom since with medicine.

    If your feeling flat, put on pop music...it works for all the kids i work with, go for a walk-every day if possible without headphones and stop to notice the flowers/birds etc, try to do things that you enjoy even if it feels bad to start with, take up a new volunteering activity, write a gratitude journal (got me through a whole year), meet other people even if its just saying hello to the shopkeeper, see a psychologist about practising mindfulness, and cognitive behavioural therapy.

    the symptoms may be medicine, or it may be more just your brain naturally recovering from psychosis. It gets better, i promise!

  • Thank you. I've been on for 4 months. I think you are right, attitude and actions impact things so much. That being said, I have a flatness and lack of caring about things I used to that it's very disturbing to me.

  • Hello nchyme

    Just to echo a reply here ..... it does get better. After my second PP I had a severe bout of depression .... feeling flat and just not bothering with self care; everything seemed such an uphill struggle for a long time. Eventually though I did find my way back, as you will too.

    Try not be hard on yourself, it's all part of the aftermath of a traumatic illness. You will be well again in your own time. I know it seems like it's taking forever, but just go with it for now ... no rush, a day, or even an hour at a time.

    Take good care of yourself.

  • Hello nchyme,

    I need to get my 6 year old son ready for school, but I will have a look in my medic folder how much Risperidone I had to take from August 2010 till the following Summer 2011 after school run. It was the last medication I was weaned off from by my GP, who had clear instructions via my Psychiatrist.

    You know I was extremely poorly and sectioned. After release I went to see my Psychatrist on a weekly basis to wean me off the traditional anti depressants (Halloperadin & Lorazepam by the end of 2010). My partner was my full time carer and reintegrated into work in 2011. I started to improve gradually. The after care was so much better and I had a close support network of professionals, my partner and his parents at the time.

    I have had extreme side-effects, because of the extreme combination of anti-depressants, but I remember that with only Risperidone in 2011 I learnt to regain confidence and was able to look after my baby and even take him out to a massaging group in February 2011.

    All in stepping stones, do not be scared & I let you know about the amount of Risperidone I took in combination with all the other drugs, if you are interested.

    Thinking of you, (got to get lunchbox ready :-)


  • Hi Nchyme,

    Although I didn't take risperidone I understand what you're saying as I experienced a severe flatness on lithium after a psychotic episode after the birth of my daughter.

    I know everyone has said it and it's hard to believe it but it does get better. It maybe the antipsychotics or some residual depression causing this but i promise you you will get better.

    I remember thinking I would never be back to 100% my old self and in some ways I'm not, I'm a changed person but only in good ways these days. Psychosis certainly opens your mind!

    Anyway as Susannah said keep trying to do the little things mindfully that help you find some enjoyment, stay strong and have faith you will improve and keep in touch with your medical team if you are considering weaning off.

    And of course we're all here for you, keep us posted when you feel up to it.


  • Hello Nchyme,

    how are you today?

    I have had a look at my folder and did not realize that I took other drugs than the once I've mentioned.

    May be this is of help;

    Mid December 2010 Procyclidine was discontinued and according to the Psychiatrist I felt drowsier when taking 2mg Risperidone in the morning. Only in the afternoon drowsiness and tiredness had subsided. Subsequently Risperidone had been adjusted whereby I took 1 mg in the morning and 2 mg at night. The higher dosis was transferred to the night. Risperidone had been reduced already by 0.5...meaning I was at 3.5 next to Quetiapine.

    (I was already weaned off the Lorazepam in November)

    My Psychiatrist suggested that, if my mental state is stabilized the morning dose can be reduced by 0.5mg for two weeks and then I would only have to take 2mg at night for 2 months and then reduce gradually in 0.5 steps.

    The weaning off process was continued and I finished taking Risperidone by the end of June 2011.

    REMEMBER: Our type of Post Partum Psychosis do vary and we all react differently, because of our make-up (biological/psychological etc.). Thus, it is very important that you work closely with professionals, who can establish a care plan bearing in mind your medical needs in order to improve your mental health.

    Take good care,

    Sabine :-)

  • Thank you Sabine!

  • Sabine, did you experience flatness on the drug?

  • You are welcome...:-)

  • Good morning nchyme,

    how are you today?

    When it comes to my own experience I quite often have to consult my partner, who had been my full time carer. I do not remember much in 2010.

    Apparently I took the Risperidone combined with Haloperidol and then in combination with Lorazepam.

    It is always important to consult your Psychiatrist or other professionals who are involved with the administration of your drugs.

    Risperidone is the group of anti psychotics which helped to keep my hallucinations under control i.e. hearing seeing, feeling, sensing things which are not there & paranoia.

    Considering that I only remember 2011 in bits and bobs I must have been extremely poorly, and 2010 is just a complete blur.

    With regards to your Risperidone intake discuss your exact feelings with the doctors, if you feel flat the amount of Risperidone may need to be lowered.

    Look after yourself,

    Sabine :-)

  • Got to come back as I had to look up 'anhedonia'. Do you take any other medication in combination with Risperidone? The inability to feel pleasure and flatness was caused by the Lorazepam. It acts like an opiate, the group of medicines called benzodiazepines. It helped to relief severe or disabling anxiety. Simultaneously complete numbness...I guess I was like a vegetable. Same affect with Haloperidol. Hope those information help a bit, - this is just based on my own case experience and with the help of my partner, who sometimes refreshes my memory :-)

  • Hi nyhme, I had the same experience with this medicine. It was scary but it went away once I stopped. I don't remember any withdrawal either. Maybe talk to your doctor about when you will be able to make a change.

  • Thank you, do you remember how long you were in the medication and what dose?

  • Now that I think back I think I may have done a taper of the drug over a week or two.

    Can't find my records but I think I remember it being a 1mg dose also.

  • I would definitely check in with doctor about this. Take care 💕

  • Thank you. I've been on it 4 months and have to get off...

  • Hello nchyme

    I hope you are ok. Perhaps you could talk to your Dr about how flat you feel, although I think the replies here show that it's quite common. He might be able to suggest something different to suit you. A day at a time might seem slow but you have been through so much and need to heal along the way.

    Take care.

  • Hi, The fact that you actually care that you feel flat or emotionless signals to me that you are able to feel and care. My husband suffers with incredible apathy and adhedonia. He doesn't even seem human to me at times. No emotion, doesn't respond, no interest in human contact, including our 11 year old daughter, who doesn't deserve this bull shit. I knew PD would have its challenges, but I had no idea it could change who you are. He isn't on anything other than levodopa/carbadopa. I think it is pure disease progression. Just a guess. He would never go on a site like this and seek help. This would require giving a shit, so I think that you're in pretty good shape.

  • Hi TheGimba,

    I'm so sorry that things are very difficult with your husband. It sounds like both he, and you as a result, are struggling at the moment. I do hope that you are able to get support.

    Did you suffer from postpartum psychosis after the birth of your daughter? Postpartum psychosis is when women become ill after having their baby, and we are a forum for anyone affected by postpartum psychosis. Reading your post, I was wondering if you have posted in the wrong group by mistake? I hope that you don't mind me asking?

    Take care,


  • Hello nchyme

    I hope you are ok and have had time to speak to your Dr about feeling flat. I think getting the right balance of medication is very important so I hope your care team will be supportive.

    Take care.

  • Thanks Lilybeth! I actually got off of the medication and did a series of ect treatment. It has been going pretty well, I tried getting off of all of my medications on my own about 6 weeks ago and ended up in the hospital again unfortunately. But that did give me the opportunity to get ect. The past year has been really hard for me and I still struggle to come to terms with it. Thank you for your support.

  • Hello nchyme

    Thanks for taking the time to reply. I'm glad the ect treatment is going well, it really helped me so much. I did the same during my recovery .... thinking I could manage without my medication and ended up in hospital so you're not on your own there.

    I think the first year is hard, coming to terms with what happened out of our control and finding medication and treatment that works. I hope you have support around you and continue to improve. You're a great mum going through so much .... remember to be kind to yourself and take things day by day.

    Sending a virtual hug across the pond :) We are all here for you to lean on.

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