ZLSJ, first of all, I can relate to your mate being tired of the anxiety issues. My husband has never been supportive. We've been married almost 19 years. He says it gets to him sometimes. Wouldn't it be nice if they could wear our shoes for a few days? He thinks he's tired of it? Hellloooo??
In my opinion, and I'm not a doctor, you can get through it without medication. But, it takes dedication, courage, knowledge, time and a lot of self acceptance. Now, going by my experience, take the medication the doctor prescribed. If Effexor is an anti-depressant, then it's not addictive. Remember that these meds can cause side effects which can make you feel uncomfortable for a few weeks. But hang in there. Once the meds take effect, life is much better. I've gone years without any anxiety with the proper medication.
If you choose not to start the meds, continue seeing your psychiatrist. Stop the junk food and caffeine. Cut way back on alcohol. Buy some books on anxiety/panic disorders. Learn biofeedback and go through cognitive behavior therapy. There are many things you can do to get through these tough times. I wish you the best of luck and let us know what you decide!
Anxiety Disorder/Mitral Valve Prolapse
50 mg. Lopressor, 60 mg. Prozac, Ativan as needed.