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 Post subject: Confession Time
PostPosted: Wed Jun 30, 2010 12:41 pm 
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I don't really want to tell this on myself so therefore I deem it important that I do. I am a true believer in "we are only as sick as our secrets". As I was debating on spilling the beans I read Gingers post about her almost relapsing. So in honor of Gingers strength, honesty, courage and integrity here goes....

My aunt travels a lot so I am the one to water her plants etc. while she is gone. There have always been numerous prescription bottles around and I have never given them a second thought. The other night I found myself looking at the labels to see what they were. The funny thing to me is at the time it was like I was on auto pilot. I don't even recall thinking about doing it ahead of time I just walked right to them and picked them up. Thank goodness there were no opiates. I finished and went home without even reflecting on what I had done until the next morning. When I awoke I was scared for myself and ashamed that I had violated her privacy and trust. I started questioning what I would have been capable of if opiates were present. I talked to another member here (an invaluable friend and confidant..thank you if you are reading this) and they helped me feel better about myself and my recovery/addiction remission but something like this reminds me how vulnerable I still am to this insidious disease.

Okay there it is, the crack in my armor so to speak.....Anyone else have a confession/close call?

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 30, 2010 1:07 pm 
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Thanks for sharing with us, Sub Success, I think that speaks volumes about YOUR strength and integrity. Remember that.

I have a "new" relative (I just met) who I've been visiting weekly. She's a senior citizen and she takes morphine twice a day. Yesterday it was sitting on the table right in front of me. I think I was a bit obsessed with it - I couldn't stop looking at it. I was never alone with it, but I have to wonder, what if I HAD been alone with it?? Then I remind myself that I don't want to destroy numerous family relationships or violate her trust. I also know that the high dose of sub I take will no doubt block any high from occurring. But my problem is what happens if I'm alone with it next week? Or the week after? I just have to keep repeating all the reasons NOT to do something stupid over and over again to myself. I'm also going to have to learn to live without this knee-jerk reaction. What I mean is not that I think I can get rid of that reaction, but that I've got to learn to deal with the temptations successfully. I think we all do. There are people I know who live with others who take opiates regularly. Honestly though, I don't know how they do it. But my husband has chronic pain and that COULD be me at some future time. So right now I just keep reminding myself how much I have invested in my sobriety/recovery/remission.

I was conflicted about whether or not to post about this, so I want to thank you, Sub Success, for affording me the opportunity to talk about it.

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-I'm only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.


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 Post subject: me too
PostPosted: Wed Jun 30, 2010 2:34 pm 
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Wow, I am beginning to wonder how many posts I will end up titling "me too." thanks Ginger, Subsucces, and Hat..and everyone else for your honesty. I just decided to post about a similar situation I'm facing. It's on one of my other posts so I'll be brief here--lots of pain meds at the house of a friend who I've been helping at her house for pay. I'm with you subsuccess-better to bring it out in the open. I'm thinking I should tell my friiend that it could be a problem for me and ask that I never be left alone. so far, i never am left alone when I'm working there....but maybe i should tel her. I know she will understand. but...i dont' want to tell her. so I'm still struggling and postponing on that.

but I think you guys are all correct--better to TALK about this kind of thing.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 30, 2010 4:00 pm 
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Sorry, I don't really have any confessions to make right now. Really, my life is actually pretty dull.

Kudos Suboxone Success for getting that off your chest.


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 Post subject: thanks for your honesty!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 30, 2010 10:58 pm 
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Hey SS,

Thanks for posting that. I know it was a relief for me just to get it off my chest. Sometimes keeping secrets like that makes us feel even worse about them, at least I know it does for me. It kind of festers in to that whole shame and guilt thing, that I am never going to change, why bother even trying.......

I also know that I still check out other people's medicine cabinets. I guess I did it for so long, that it is going to take some time not to.. Now the good thing is, that if I find something, and so far I have nothing more than some Tylenol 3's. Still though, I know how you felt doing that and I am glad that you posted your experience.

Junkie, I must admit, I have been reading your posts for months now and I must admit, I am very impressed with your honesty and your recovery. I have been going to mention this a few times, but I have not been able to find any thread you started. (SS - Sorry to mention this on your thread - have just really wanted to tell junkie that)

So, to all of us, I think it's going to take more than several months on Sub to shake this kind of stuff. I don't know, maybe it will always be with us, but I did notice that not one of us acted on it, so that is a HUGE improvement to where we were not that long ago. So here's to us!!

Ginger


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 11:24 am 
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:oops: Hi All,
Reading everyones post helped me to understand that my disease is alive and well!! I too have a friend/neighbor who is on pain pills and makes it well known to me that she is taking them!! I have told her time and time again that it bothers me when she speaks of this...but she keeps doing it anyway!! I also clean her house weekly and have told her to put her meds away when I come because I don't even want to look at them (she is well aware of my disease)...she has respected me as far as hiding the bottles when I come but she still keeps telling me when and why she takes pain meds!! This has been a real threat to me as I find myself thinking about her pain pills all the time!!! I have spoke with my counselor about this and we are trying different methods in dealing with this issue...I thought about not cleaning for her anymore but it really isn't an option because I need the money!! I am a full time student working two jobs to keep up with my bills...working for her makes it really nice for me as I can work my own hours! Anyway, just wanted to get that out as someone has mentioned that we are only as sick as our secrets...I have been on suboxone for almost a yr and it has saved my life!!!!!!!!! I don't ever want to go back to where I once was, but I know that my disease is waiting for me and that scare the crap out of me!!
Thank you Everyone for all of your post as I read them often!
Keep sharing people...it saves LIFES!!!
Greatful to be Clean Today!!!

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I can't do this alone, but WE can do this together!!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 2:24 pm 
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OK, I will tell you all something. I am approaching a year off of Suboxone and I STILL check people's medicine cabinets. Of course, I did that before I ever did any pills, so I guess I am just nosy. Recently, a friend offered me a vicodin at work because I had a migraine & didn't have my meds with me. My hand was out before the thought to decline even formed in my mind. But I was able to say - Oh, I'd better just wait till I get home where I have my (non-narcotic) meds.

For some reason, it seems that some of these "addicty behaviors" are so wired into our brains that they're incredibly difficult to remove. In school (I'm studying to be an addiction counselor) we watched films of researchers who are studying relapse triggers and what happens in the brain when an addicted person - even one in recovery - is exposed to a trigger.

They were doing PET brain scans on people who had been addicted to crack. While the person was being scanned they were shown a series of images. Embedded in these images were some that were meant to trigger thoughts of using - a pipe, a crackhouse, that kind of thing. These images were only presented for a fraction of a second, not even long enough to register in the person's consciousness.

Even so, when the image was presented, the part of the brain that is involved with the response-reward cycle - the addict part - would light up on the scan.

The parts of the brain that are involved in these reward cycles are VERY OLD. They are so old that they can basically bypass the reasoning part of the brain. It's like your brain goes directly from stimulus to action without passing through thought along the way.

A lot of us mention the phenomenon of noticing that you're opening the medicine cabinet, or picking up the bottle of pills, or whatever, and it's like you didn't even think about it or consider it - you just did it. This is why - that circuit in our brains is very well developed (as it should be because in other aspects it has helped to keep our species alive). And so many things can trigger our brain's desire to get what makes it feel good - places, people, things, emotions, you name it. The trigger doesn't even have to register on your conscious mind to do it's work.

That's why it's so great that you were able to put the pills down and back away. Your conscious will to break that cycle DID interrupt your brain and got you back on track. That is something to feel good about!

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 2:35 pm 
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Diary, I just wanted to say thanks for taking the time to explain that. I enjoyed reading it and it makes a lot of sense. I find it's always beneficial to understand my own behaviors. You can't change a behavior if you don't know where it comes from or originates. My husband came home with more Tramadol/Ultram yesterday. He's been taking them for a couple of months now and doesn't take very many. My thoughts always immediately go to "I can take X amount and he'll never notice". Thankfully Ultram never did anything for me, but that doesn't keep my brain from going there anyway.
Again, thanks for that.

_________________
-As I have grown older, I've learned that pleasing everyone is impossible, but pissing everyone off is a piece of cake.

-I'm only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 2:53 pm 
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You're welcome Hat - I'm glad someone can benefit from the knowledge I've been cramming into my brain this past year :D


I wanted to add that I hope that the above information doesn't make anyone feel like it's useless to try to overcome triggers - because it isn't. We just have to work to be present and aware of what is going on with us so that even when the trigger fires off a reaction in our brains were are still "there" enough to realize what's happened before we actually get the pill into our mouth and swallow it. The more emotional (anxious, sad, angry whatever) we are at the time, the harder it seems to be to short circuit the response, and the calmer we are the easier it is.

I have found that practicing meditation and mindfulness really helps in this area. It has helped me to slow down, be more aware of my landscape - internal and external, and be less reactive to all kinds of triggers. I'm sure that a lot of us have had the experience of saying something without really thinking, even while a small part of us is in the back of our mind going: I can't believe I'm saying this right now!!! This often happens during arguments. Well, meditation/mindfulness has helped with that as well - and just decreased anxiety and increased patience and compassion for myself and others all around.

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You can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.

-Jack Kornfield


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:10 pm 
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I wanted to add to something you said about emotions and overcoming triggers. I learned in therapy that when our emotions are high (or intense) our rational thought processes are low. As our emotions become less intense, our rational thinking increases. Knowing and understanding this has helped me immensely in all areas of my life. Right now my therapist is teaching me mindfullness. I'm very "disconnected" from my body and I'm having a hard time with it, but as I get better at it I'm learning how beneficial being mindfull can be.

Seriously, Diary, I really enjoy reading all about what you're learning. I appreciate you sharing it. These are things, again, that can help in all areas of one's life.

_________________
-As I have grown older, I've learned that pleasing everyone is impossible, but pissing everyone off is a piece of cake.

-I'm only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 11:05 pm 
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When I was about 19, I broke into my granny's place trying to get to my grandfather's big bottle of morphine that he clearly didn't need anymore because he'd died a week earlier from cancer. She came home while I was in the process, so I had to pretend it was a surprise visit. I ended up inviting my 2 really dubious mates waiting in a car outside for tea & scones.

Bless my grandma.

God I hate addiction :x


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