Vivarin medication –stay awake medicine. It took me a long time for me to start taking meds. Because everyone kept telling me since I was young, well just stop thinking that way. It took me several years before the Dr. could get me to take meds. But once I finally did it was really interesting when I did and my daughter said to me, well mom, it is really nice to see you happy, smiling. That is a prelude to all of this… I started to feel depression about 6 months ago because it was an event that happened after a family traumatic event. [My provider] started me on Abilify. I started to feel really good and was getting all this stuff done. But then I noticed by about 3 am I would just get so tired, literally like I would fall out. I work a night shift. I broke down and purchased some Vivarin. I bought it and purchased it on my night shift and took it until I could figure out what to do. Every single night I realized at about the same time every night. Then I started to take it earlier in the night so I didn’t get that tired. I was going to see my psychiatrist after a few weeks and we discussed what could have caused this. Because she had never had anyone with Abilify. But she took me off it even though we knew that it would work. She asked me if I was maybe bipolar. I was so proud of myself because I was getting all these things done and had so much energy. But by the end of 1 month, I realized that it was some kind of a high I must have been having. Another reason I did not want to resort to this was because I have high blood pressure and I was afraid to take this [Vivarin] stuff because I know they have a lot of caffeine. I am fearful of even taking energy drinks. But, I didn’t feel like I was jittery, which was good, because I would worry about my heart and I’m glad that I did not. This is the only or 2nd time I’ve ever taken something to stay awake. [I would educate people:] Don’t resort to medications that you are not usually taking because of another medication that you are on—[it] is not a good idea. You should discuss this with someone that you’re working with. I felt I had to do this but only for a period of time until I could see my psychiatrist. Staying awake with meds is not a good idea and it really bothers me. [To providers, I would suggest:] Always be inquisitive, not to say if you have patients that lie about things, but to ask patients if you have had or made any changes since you have been on this medication. I’m willing to talk about how my brain thinkings when it comes to meds and if you are not on medications or have this, you may not know what questions to ask of your patients. It is actually a medical condition and it is not something that I can just think this way. I try really hard to think positive in my life and I am understanding. My analogy in my life that it is like a car that is mis-firing and for my brain to work I need a medication to make my car not mis-fire. A lot of people don’t realize that we have electricity in it. We can’t have too much and we can’t have too little. Just like cars. I find that helpful when I tell people this is what depression is. It has taken me a lot of years to understand this and explain this. To me certain behaviors don’t always point to depression and anxiety, but when I look at my childhood and teenage [years] I realize I had depression as a kid. I did it mostly to understand myself, understand my self and to understand others in my family to get checked out. I’m not an advocate for meds but if you can get checked out and meds will help so you don’t mis-fire, then do it. I didn’t feel any shame to tell my Dr. that I had started to take the Vivarin.