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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 2:14 pm 
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I won't bore anyone with war stories, but here's a little introduction:

I'm 29. Started doing drugs as a teen, went to cocaine and then straight to heroin when uppers got to be too much. Was an IV user for about 3 years, with a bundle and half per day habit at the end. Had a great life, excellent job, and lost it. Finally woke up one day to what I was doing to myself, and moved away from those damned people, places, and things. Went on suboxone. Was on such a high dose of dope that I was sick, shaking, and sweaty for 3 months even with suboxone. Didn't experience that "normal" feeling, even at 12mg or more. I decided I was going to tough things out and get my life back together, and I've met and exceeded all of my goals over the past 3 years. Made every appointment, passed every drug test. I really think suboxone saved my life; I may have white-knuckled my way through the H withdrawal, but I'd never have lived through the incessant cravings without sub. I haven't thought about dope, dreamed about dope, in two years, and I have no desire to do drugs anymore. My life is on the rails and it's staying that way.

During my time on suboxone, I went back to school for a second degree. Over the past year and half, I've been doing the slow taper (according to the doctor's instructions). I've been at 0.25 mg for more than 6 months (and probably closer to 8 or 9), but I haven't made the jump yet because I've been too busy with school.

Well, I graduated this week. I was accepted into a top grad program in my field, and I'm psyched to start in the fall. Only catch is that it's finally time-- the doctor pushed me to agree to making the jump. So I have two days left on 0.25 mg.

I know I can do this, and I'm not too afraid. I have hydroxyzine, loperamide, and I can get some clonidine if things get rough.

Anyway, I'm here for moral support, because although my family has my back, they don't truly understand how hard this stuff is to go through.

Somebody tell me it's not going to be that bad? :(


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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 3:36 pm 
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hey there. Its hard to say how hard it will be to stop. .25 is a very low dose to jump from, especially since youve been on it for 6 months +. Some people I've read about have had a fairly easy time, some people have had a hard time. It's my opinion that you won't have that difficult of a jump. It seems like your life is pretty good and you have decent support - these things will probably take a lot of the edge off as well. Best of luck!


Last edited by eric is on Fri May 18, 2012 3:41 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 3:38 pm 
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I recently jumped about a week ago after being on subs for two and a half years. I was on a dose of .2mg for about 3-4 months before I decided to taper down further over about a month period to .06mg before jumping. There are many people who have jumped successfully at your dose or even higher. I would just recommend listening to your body and if you are feeling really bad physically or mentally after a few days then it is ok to taper down a bit further before trying to jump again.
Good luck to you


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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2012 4:56 pm 
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Thanks for the replies, guys.

I know it could go either way, but I think I've built it up too much in my mind because full agonist withdrawal is so #$%#$% traumatic. I spoke with a counselor once who said he never really understood how bad withdrawal was until one of his outpatients literally had a panic attack and broke down in his office when he told her that the doctor would probably expect her to taper down on suboxone within a couple of years. He said it was so extreme that it looked like the PTSD cases he's seen. Wouldn't surprise me one bit.

I did jump off 2mg once, but I'd only been taking 8mg for a few months at that point and I tapered down to 2 mg fast. I don't remember it being bad at all, aside from insomnia. It didn't disrupt my routine much. But I was still in crazy addict mode then and was drinking and do other drugs a lot to distract myself.

Just going to stay strong and positive. I look forward to being completely free. I notice my energy levels are extremely variable and I get hit with a wave of extreme fatigue everyday in the late afternoon.

I want to be an inspirational story for the other people on here, so they can see it is possible to get back on track, and that used properly, suboxone can be an important recovery tool.


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 Post subject: Me too!
PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2012 5:26 pm 
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I'm about to jump from the same dose in a few days. I'm at 1mg right now and will be at .25 in a few more days then the jump. I'll keep you posted on how I'm doing. I haven't been on sub for very long so I don't know if that will make it better or worse. Well good luck. We're in the same boat so keep your head up and keep us posted.


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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2012 6:40 pm 
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Hey nadine,

I don't think you're gonna have a rough go of it at all. There are several folks on this forum who jumped from where you're at and they didn't have a terrible time at all.

The best advice I can give you is to keep your mind busy. If your mind is left to wander, it'll start fixating on how you feel and then you'll probably start to feel crappy. Keeping your body active is also highly recommended.

As far as the afternoon blah's, I got those for a while too. I started exercising and working out in the afternoon and POW, the blah's disappeared.

Do you plan on doing any kind of recovery work?? Stopping drugs and staying off drugs are two different animals.

Oh Yeah, congratulations on graduating AND being accepted into a top grad program in your field!!

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 5:46 pm 
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I jumped at .25mgs 38 days ago, it was pretty easy for me. Im still not 100% but each week gets better. I still have trouble sleeping and mood swings but nothing too major. Its really mental so dont dwell on it too much. Tzke a good multi vitamin, amino acids and start working out a lot, that will help you the most. Keep in mind that its a road to recovery, it takes time to get better.


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 1:40 am 
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Yes, staying clean is the biggest challenge. Over the past couple of years I've finally learned how to deal with disappointment and negative crap without drugs, so that's a plus. I've also learned to avoid situations that cause a lot of chaos and negativity in the first place, which is an even more important skill. I could probably stand to go to some meetings, but in the past I found they would induce cravings when I wasn't having any otherwise. Maybe I can see a counselor one-on-one or something. Has anyone here done that?

Anyway, I'm at about 32 hours and I can feel some wds starting. They seem to be nothing that hydroxyzine and loperamide can't manage, so far. (I slept all day, basically, with the help of 10 mg of hydroxyzine and one loperamide pill). No stomach problems, which is a blessing. The worst part of full agonist withdrawal for me was usually the combination of extreme panic and endless nausea/vomiting. So this seems like cake so far. Kind of like a moderate flu.

I really think I built this up waaay too much in my head. I'll report back again soon.


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 2:54 pm 
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Closing in on 48 hours, and I feel completely fine. I slept soundly all night on 20 mg of hydroxyzine and 2 loperamide pills. I do get waves of feeling a little off (headache, a little restlessness), but if I take a loperamide pill they go away. No sneezing, no RLS, nothing yet. To call this withdrawal would be an insult to people who are actually withdrawing.

Honestly, I think I went through the bulk of the withdrawals over my long taper. When I got below 1 mg, I noticed that I would start going into semi-withdrawal within 12 hours or so of dosing. When I'd get drug tested at the doctor's, there were several times over the past few months when the suboxone dip test was coming up negative-- I was absorbing so little sub that it couldn't even be detected in my urine. I was dosing everyday at that time, too, not every other day. Apparently only about 40% of the total dose gets absorbed sublingually, so I jumped off at essentially 0.1 mg, which is the equivalent of 5 mg of morphine. Nothin'...

So my advice: stay on a really low dose (0.25 mg) for as long as possible, and use hydroxyzine rather than clonodine for managing symptoms. And try to follow a medical taper schedule devised by your doctor if at all possible....


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 11:43 pm 
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Read up on paws, paws are worse for me than acute wd.


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PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 12:34 pm 
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I jumped around the same time as Ozzy, also from .25 milligrams. It was annoying at certain parts but not at all difficult, and nowhere near full agonist withdrawal. I had Clonidine and Atarax which really helped. I did not have any benzos, but I do not think they were needed. They might have helped, but oh well.

I actually found the last month or two of tapering to be worse then the final jump. I was totally useless for the most part. I haven't experienced that much in the way of PAWS, but I did notice it a little maybe a week or two ago. I should note that your habit seemed to be worse then mine (no offense).


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PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2012 2:19 pm 
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Good points. I went through terrible PAWs when I transitioned onto suboxone. Terrible. But I'm not sure how much of it was from actual withdrawal and how much of it was just "omg, look at all the stupid shit I've done, how am I going to deal with this? I'd rather be high..." This time around, I hope I won't have those feelings because I don't really have any big problems to clean up after. I have stuff to look forward to, which should help.

So, I'm at almost 72 hours, and I'm still fine. I do feel a little odd, slightly worse than yesterday, but it's mostly just sluggishness and vague muscle aches (which loperamide kills). The sluggishness may be partially from the hydroxyzine. I slept from 1AM-9AM, got up thirsty as hell, watched some TV, and I've been falling asleep for 2 hours at a time since. I can eat, but I'm not hungry like I would be. No sneezing, RLS, nothing.

@Stephen: yeah, I had worked my way up to what would be the equivalent of around 1000mg of morphine per day, so I know firsthand that withdrawal can be really, really bad. When I went on suboxone, I vomited, dry heaved and couldn't keep down water for 2 weeks, to the point where they had to put me on suppositories of anti-nausea medicine that they give to dying chemo patients so I wouldn't tear my esophagus. TMI, but it's a good advertisement for why drugs are NOT fun and glamorous. Wanna feel like your stomach is trying to jump out of your body for 2 weeks? I think not. Just say no.


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PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 2:05 am 
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The hydroxozine aka vistaril is pry whats making you so sluggish, that stuff makes me so tired the next day. Clonodine is better in my opinion because itworks on the central nervous system without the sluggish feeling the next day. Day 4 you will pry peak and it should get better from there. I agre with stephent was harder han the actual jump. Stick with it and stay strong. Any questions and we are here for you.


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PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 10:57 am 
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Hey nadine,

I just wanted to mention that as I've been reading your thread and your comments on the rest of the forum that I'm really impressed with your knowledge of and practice of recovery. It took me 2 damn years after quitting Suboxone to get to where you ALREADY seem to be. Grrr, being a dumbass sucks!! LOL

Anyhoo, I just wanted to let you know that I think you're doing real good.

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PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 5:06 pm 
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Haha... thanks Romeo, but any knowledge I have about recovery did not come easy!! I had about 10 years of practice before I was actually able to get stuff in order. I definitely learned the hard way. I just hope other people learn from my mistakes.

Day 4, and I feel fine. A little worse than yesterday, but still about a 2 or 3 out of 10. I get waves of fatigue, but nothing too bad. If I were going to work, it would bug me more, but as it is I'm just resting when I feel the need. I only took a tiny bit of hydroxyzine last night... don't really think I'll need it for much longer. It may be making the fatigue worse, but the anti-histamine is keeping me from sneezing and all that, so at this point it seems worth it. In the past I had issues when I stopped using clonidine (like my heart would start beating really fast), so I've been avoiding it. Other people swear by it, though.

I've noticed a pattern where I feel crappiest for about an hour after I wake up. Higher body temp with heavy limbs. But it goes away and I'm fine until bedtime.

Of course, I find out today that one of my relatives might have cancer. It really does seem like there's always something, as soon as I detox, that pops out of nowhere and could possibly threaten my recovery if I gave in to the stress. This time I won't let it.


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PostPosted: Thu May 24, 2012 10:03 am 
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Wow, you are like the person from the future that I dreamed of becoming months ago. I just graduated from college too. I kept wanting to quit subs and kept putting it off for the the summer. Now I have to be totally clean by the start of grad school too, or at least that is the goal. I started taper at beginning of May and I am stuck at 2 mg a day. I recently switched to subutex b/c it was cheaper and I started to get the mini-sickness you talked about. I think it does not absorb as well as the strips. You are so lucky, and you will be my inspiration to say "It is do-able" because you had the same plan as me to quit this summer.

Just in case you did not know this, I always get an anti-histamine that specifically says "non-drowsy", because (for me anyways) if it does not say "non-drowsy", I nod throughout the day. A cheap one at the pharmacy is an off-label Loratadine, which is claritin but cheaper.

When I get a craving I have specific music that I listen to, a specific book I pick up, and a specific funny tv show I watch.

I'm sorry your relative has cancer. I know the fear you feel, my mom has carcinoid cancer which is really rare. It was under control for years but recently flared up again because she stopped going to the doctor as much because health insurance has gotten very expensive. It's a real scare because you don't know when that person will start having pain or other symptoms.

Well, keep us posted, and congratulations on all your success!!


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PostPosted: Thu May 24, 2012 11:33 am 
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invisiblemovement - I'm just curious to hear what music/book/tv show you watch when you get cravings. Do you find that they help?

I like to read and watch a lot of self-help books and tv programs because they bring up important topics and get me thinking about things with a new perspective...things that I never would have thought about on my own. Shows like Oprah's Lifeclass, and books written by Iyanla Vanzant (sp?) and Gary Zukov. Even though I have issues with some of the ways Oprah does and says certain things, watching her shows has introduced me to a lot of amazing authors that have helped me see things in a new light.


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PostPosted: Thu May 24, 2012 7:23 pm 
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Hey invisible_movement,

It's funny that we're in such a similar situation! I'll bet there are more out there like us lurking and just reading the forum... Luckily, it looks like cancer has been ruled out, but still surgery is necessary I'll want to help out afterward. Hopefully by then I'll be at my best.

Today (day 5) I'm feeling good. Sweating more than I was, but any fear I had that I wouldn't be able to successfully detox is gone. I've been trying to go out for walks and eat well. You can do this. I promise you it's nowhere near as bad as I thought it would be. If I didn't know better I'd think I was coming down with a slight cold. Yesterday was the first day I felt inclined to take advil for some slight muscle aches, and it worked well.

Thanks for the anti-histamine suggestion, btw! I think I'll try that, because I'm getting a lot of sluggishness in the morning from the Atarax.

I came up with a new trick last night for cravings. I'm thinking of starting a savings account, and transferring a small amount of money into it from my checking every time I want to use and successfully resist. There's a pair of speakers I want, so I have something in mind to work toward.


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PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2012 10:22 pm 
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O

M

G!!!

I would watch Oprah's lifeclass too! Well actually, I only watched it once... with deepak chopra... and it raised some good overall life questions but didn't really answer them. Although it was a good way to kill an hour... it is nice to know that other people are concerned with deep questions. And I read her magazine.. lol... like what you said, there are some things I don't agree with, like her magazine in my opinion. Some articles are inspirational but it's mostly a magazine for older, rich women. But it keeps me positive so I read it.

I am female so I read female magazines like Glamour. And I recently read Mindy Kaling's book "Is everyone Hanging Out Without Me? and other concerns" because it was funny. If I have cravings I pick up something that will make me laugh because laughing makes you happy. And this book made me laugh out loud!

Speaking of mindy kaling, I DVR The Office, Roseanne, Friends, King of the Hill, and occasionally Family Guy. They also make me laugh so it keeps me positive. And Seinfeld. And it's a great way to kill time, and you feel rewarded because you are happy when you get the jokes. And, because it is DVDred (if you have that option), then you get a constant flow of goodness because you can skip the commercials. So rent movies too if that helps. Rent the shows on DVD and watch them nonstop.

For music I listen to the Red Hot Chili Peppers because it reminds me of happy childhood but also it is positive music. And John Frusciante's music (their old guitarist) because it is deep music that provokes deep emotions and so it is nice to let the depression out. You can't just laugh forever, sometimes depression will hit and you need to release it somehow. And when I'm angry I listen to Rammstein.


nadine_wan -

I can't believe it!!! I can't believe you are doing so well!! That is what I have always dreamed of! Like just a little cold! And nothing that advil can't cure? THIS IS GREAT! I'm so excited for when I get to do what you're doing! I want the slight cold! I want the challenge! Bring it on! Great job with the walking and eating well. You obviously know that fresh air and food have a profound effect on the body. Any tips for what food makes you feel good?


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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 1:01 pm 
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I'm on day 8 and the only issue I'm having is cold sweats, just clammy and sweaty. I haven't taken any comfort meds in days, and I feel mentally "normal" and can focus pretty well. On day 6, the physical stuff ended and withdrawal went to my head. I (no joke) suddenly felt electrical activity or something strange going on in my cloudy brain, got really tired, fell asleep for a few hours, and woke up feeling "normal". Next day, my dopamine and serotonin jumped up (in rebound after years of being out of whack), and cold sweats started. I feel a little "jacked up", and sleep about 6 hours per night, but given the fact that I used to induce this feeling on purpose using drugs, I'm not complaining. I feel like I'm on amphetamines. Could be worse. My father has the flu right now, and he's lying in 85 degree weather under a blanket shivering, in worse shape than I am.

In my experience, days 4-6 were the worst of it, and everyday it gets a little better. I tapered and stayed on a low dose for a long, long time, so my theory is that it helped my brain adjust (start downregulating endorphin receptors) before I jumped off. I recommend taking your time if you can. It's not a race...


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