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DR. RUDORFER: Thank you. Speaker 59, please. Pamela Wild
MS. WILD: On September 9, 2001, in a state of confusion and hopelessness, I put a .38 Special, Smith & Wesson revolver under my chin and pulled the trigger. In going through withdrawal from Paxil, I lost all ability to cope and reason and without realizing it, became suicidal. I suffered from sleeplessness, night sweats, light and sound sensitivity, irritability, and dizziness.
I was in a constant state of terrible anxiety and felt as though the only thing holding me together was my skin. I couldn’t understand why others weren’t seeing things my way, as though I was speaking in another language. I was told by my therapist that I had drifted into a fantasyland.
She said it was though my system had been poisoned somehow, I was told not to worry, the only way to die from this drug was to fill a tub with Paxil and water and drown in it.
The side effects I experienced on Paxil, even though I reported them to my doctor, were dismissed because no one was warned that Paxil could cause what I was experiencing.
If I, at 41 years old, could not articulate what was happening, how do you expect a child to?
There is no real medical explanation for my survival. The front of my face was blown away, leaving a hole large enough to encompass a man’s fist. The bullet miraculously only took two-thirds of my tongue, most of my mandible and my cheek bones. The maxilla was shattered.
The orbit of my left eye was broken and forced the eyeball out onto what remained of my left cheek. It completely destroyed my hard and soft palate along with my nose and sinus cavity.
I was blessed, though. I may not able to taste or smell, but at least I lived. I can see, talk, and I can hear. But more surprising than any of those, I have brain function. I truly believe my life was spared for a reason. That reason is so I can prevent others from experiencing what I experienced.
DR. RUDORFER: Thank you very much.