#ArmijoProblems with Prescription Drugs After Cancer

When I was finishing chemo, I was given Ambien to help me sleep. It didn't work, but the side effects of 'violent and suicidal thoughts' sure did.

I don't think I've ever really talked about this publicly, but reading about Chris Cornell's death and what his wife is saying about his taking Ativan, which is some powerful stuff made me see the connection.

When the suicidal thoughts hit me for the first time I jokingly thought 'wow, where did that come from?', and realized it was from the Ambien. I took my low prescription as directed for 30 days and for 30 days those thoughts not only persisted but intensified. My thoughts were 24/7 creative ways to kill myself. I have a family so it was never something I would actually do, but I am equally convinced that if I DIDN'T have a family I would have.

A lot of my friends heard my offhanded comments during this time and went out of their ways to call me and check on me. I haven't really share this before, but just got done reading the article below which seems to jive with my own experience.

Ambien and Ativan, and similar drugs should probably be illegal, IMO. I eventually stopped the Ambien cold turkey instead of weaning myself off, which was probably equally dumb.

John Armijo
TCAF Ambassador