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 Post subject: First day off....
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:36 pm 
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Ok... I have been on Suboxone since late 2005. I have made the decision to come off of it. I have been opioid free since then, and have no desire to go back.
That being said, even a year ago, you would not have heard me saying (or thinking, for that matter) that I would EVER come off of it. I am in a different place now. I am happy.. For once.
I am 38yrs old, married to the most wonderful woman in the world, (no offense meant to any women reading this). But... I met her while I was on the program, and I married her while I was on the program. She is a nurse, but I don't think she really know what to expect out of this withdrawal period. (She is a NP at a dermatology practice).
I already have the hot/cold sweats, skin crawling sensation, yawns, runny nose, teary eyes, etc... AND IT'S ONLY BEEN 24 HOURS since I took the last quarter of a 2mg strip. I threw the rest of what I had away, just because I AM DONE. I have been tapering, by choice, for a while now. I started on 24-36mg/dayin 05' and stayed there for the majority of my time. Over the last year and a half, I tapered from 16mg to nothing... today.
I am here simply because I need solace from somewhere.


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 Post subject: Re: First day off....
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 8:09 pm 
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Welcome,

Those symptoms you describe are really annoying. Sorry to hear you're right in the thick of it. You can have a look at other threads in "stopping suboxone." Can be helpful to learn some tricks and may pass the time. In the meantime, here is a cheat sheet to help lessen the withdrawal symptoms:

hot baths
music in your ears
a massage (if you can schedule one in the next week, you'll thank me later)
exercise/ sunshine/ fresh air (walking a little if you can)
watch funny shows
vitamins
clonodine (will help with anxiousness, RLS, and getting sleep)

I know I'm leaving some off.. Hang in there!


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 Post subject: Re: First day off....
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 8:13 pm 
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Well first welcome to you twostepj, and second congratulations for making a move and taking charge of your life with your decision. Your in the right place for advice, suggestions, and support from many knowledgable, caring, and experienced members.

Not too many get their dose as high as you have being at 36mg, even if for a short time. Because of the extremely long half life of Suboxone/Subutex it can take a very long time to get all of this drug from your system, even with tapering as you have done. It builds in your system, and dissapates or leaves very slowly.

That's great while your on sub therapy, but not necessarily so when getting off and having symptoms. It could take days, and sometimes weeks to get all the sub from the system. Tapering as you have done certainly helps your cause, but you could still be in for many more days fighting symptoms. Want to be honest here and not blow smoke at you.

So much of this can be mental too with your body and brain also fighting you. Your system already knows you have stopped putting the sub in it and is rebelling and fighting trying so hard to get you to take more immediately. It may be that way for several more days unfortunately. You have to do all you can to keep your spirits up, and remain as positive as you possibly can during this trying time. Not an easy thing to do.

Staying as busy as possible will help tremendously. Music will also be of great help to you. Things like hot tub soaks and showers several times per day help greatly. Make sure you stay well hydrated to help flush those toxins from the system. There's also some help called the Thomas Recipe that has been known to help withdrawal symptoms. Just google for it. It does suggest the use of benzo-type meds of which you need to be careful even if you are familiar with them. You can get addicted to them quickly even if using as directed I have personally found. Just don't need another issue right now is basically what I'm saying. But maybe give that Thomas Recipe, minus the benzo unless you really need it, a try as it's loaded with lots of natural vitamins and supplements said to help.

Do anythiung except sitting around watching the clock. Makes minutes seem like hours. Just taking a walk will help more than you think! Take it one day at a time and treat the individual symptoms as they arise. Imodium for bathroom issues, Hylands Restful Legs for any RLS problems, Melatonin and/or Sleepy Time Tea for sleep issues that most usually have, and antiimflammatory meds for sore and tired aching muscles and bones.

Others will have different suggestions and you take what you feel you can use and leave the rest. Figure out what best helps you and go with it. Hope this helps and I wish you the very best! Please keep posting any questions, rants when upset or angry, and just to get thoughts out in the open. Really helps to post and still helps me!

You CAN do this! :D

Karen xoxo

P.S. Also bananas for RLS, potassium, magnesium and gatorade will all help some for most people.


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 Post subject: Re: First day off....
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 10:08 pm 
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Opiate wd is no fun, man. I feel for ya.

Most people don't notice wd symptoms from Suboxone until the 2nd or 3rd day, but I was like you, I felt those bastards right quick. The good news is that you're more than likely in for a fairly mild wd because you tapered down to .5mg. Are you going to feel like a million bucks over the next few days, nope, but you're not going to be in the bathroom crapping all over yourself and barfing at the same time either.

If you can get to a doctor and get some Clonidine, that will help. Clonidine (not Klonopin) is a blood pressure medication that's prescribed off label for opiate wd. It's the best thing I took during my wd. It's non-addictive, so no worries there.

If you can somehow keep your mind and body busy during this wd, it will make things easier on you. Some of us find it very hard to remove our asses from the couch during wd, but sitting around wallowing in your wd symptoms is about the worst thing you can do. Believe me, I did it!! Trying to become one with the couch does NOT help.

Hang in there, twostepj.....you're in for a bit of a bumpy ride, but it's nothing a shit-ton of people here haven't already done!!

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 Post subject: Re: First day off....
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 11:14 pm 
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I will avoid repeating what these other knowledgeable people have stated. You are fighting the good fight, the fact you are making the decision to toss your sub and start the detox process says a lot of your character. Your safety net should not be the sub, your safety net is your will for success, your family and loved ones, and your awareness of what may come in the next stage of your life. Knowledge is power my friend, you know yourself better than anyone. Know what triggers and weak spots you have and do not be afraid to confront them head on. Do not cower in a period of weakness, show your strength through your weakest moments and you will come out the other side feeling like a million bucks. I send all my well wishes your way as i was in your shoes all not that long ago.

Take care


edit: also, depending on the weather where you live, best thing i ever did was go with my brother to the zoo, i thought that there is no way in the world i could muster the strength to WALK around the zoo. I will tell you i sweat my ass off, i felt like an old geezer (no offense to the elderly), but after those few hours were over i was legitimately tired from activity, not from withdrawal. I know that depending on your situation you may or may not be able to take on an activity such as this but as soon as you can get outside and push yourself.


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 Post subject: Re: First day off....
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 4:35 pm 
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I would like to thank you all for the well wishes and the good advice. It is now day 2, and I and a bit worse for the wear. I know I am in for the long haul, there is light at the end of the tunnel, and that it will all be worth it in the end... right? Ok, enough with the idioms. This sucks, and we all know it sucks. WEdo,but the people in our lives, ie. spouses, children, friends [(real friends, not the ones we used to use with) hopefully they are no longer our 'friends'.] parents, co-workers, etc... HAVE NO FLIPPING CLUE what this is like, (Nor would I want them to). I wouldn't wish this hell on my worst enemy. Well, maybe my brother, but that's a different story entirely.

I need to make a correction from my initial post yesterday. I had written that I started on 36mg/day in 05'. That was incorrect. My math failed me in that moment. I started taking the good ol' 8mg tabs (remember those!?) 2in the AM and 2 in the PM. Add that together and you'll come up with 32mg, NOT 36mg. Sorry about that, and please forgive me... I FEEL LIKE CRAP! None the less, Brown Eyed Girl, you are absolutely correct. That is quite a large dose.

Here is a bit of background:
I was introduced to pain killers at the very ripe age of 12. Yep... 12. I was injured in an accident that resulted in several broken bones and a punctured kidney. Chronic pain was inevitable with the extent of the injuries I had. I started out, like most of us, taking the prescribed amount, no more, no less. When I was about 14, I realized, through 'friends', that I didn't have to wait for my mom to give me my dose, I could get this stuff on the street! What!?!?? That, was (here comes another idiom)"the beginning of the end".

My usage escalated semi-rapidly and continued into my mid to late 20's. Doc hopping, shop hopping... We all know how to get what we want, until we CAN'T... Then came the day that someone introduced me to snorting heroin. Once you get to that point, you lose control pretty damn quick. I thought, "You mean if I just snort that skinny line of God knows what the hell is in it, that I could feel the same as taking a hand full of pills!? Sign me up!

So this continued into my early 30's. Just after my 31st birthday, in September, I realized that Christmas wasn't that far away, and had spent almost every last dime I had spent 20 years accumulating in my 401k. Didn't hardly have enough to cover the bills, let alone get my son presents. (I have been a single parent since I was 20.) At that moment, it hit me. That proverbial ton of bricks fell on my face. GET YOUR SHIT TOGETHER, or you're going to lose ALL OF IT.

I gathered my thoughts, and all the wits I had, and decided to go to a rehab facility. I was only there for 10 days. All I wanted to do was detox. I figured I could handle the rest on my own. EPIC FAIL. I was high 2 days after I got out. Then I started doing research after remembering someone in the rehab mentioning Suboxone. I found a Doc close by, and the rest is really just mundane. I am here, where I am, because of Suboxone.

Recently, it dawned on me that these Sub doctors can only prescribe to a limited number of people. I felt like I was holding someone back from getting to where I feel I am, by continuing the program. Thus, the conversation with my doc, and the taper began. Slow and steady wins this race. (Someone wrote that somewhere in this site). But no one ever mentioned the "2mg Plateau" when tapering. I learned of this entirely on my own. So I figured, when I was down to a quarter of a 2mg strip for about 2 weeks, I didn't need the rest. In the pisser they went.

And now, I am here. With y'all. Looking for another safety net to fall in to.

Thank you all for the support. I hope you made it to the end before you dozed off. This helps me. I am mildly surprised about that, but truly it helps.

Thank you all.


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 Post subject: Re: First day off....
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 4:45 pm 
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LOL about wishing this on your brother!! Your sense of humor is still intact, so that's good!! :lol:

I've always thought opiate wd would be the best torture the CIA could use for interrogation purposes. I know if they were torturing me with opiate wd and told me all I had to was give up some info for some opiates, I'd start talking right quick!!!

Yeah, one of the hardest aspects of my wd was that no one in my life really understood the hell I was going through. My wife and daughter were there for me everyday. Friends called to check up on me, but none of them really knew the pain I was in.

I realized this during my wd, though.....we're all stronger than we think we are. You are stronger than you know!!

Welcome to our safety net, and keep posting and talking shit out all you want because it does help.

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 Post subject: Day 3...
PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 1:47 pm 
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Here we are. It is day 3 and I seem to be a bit more lethargic, and lackluster with just about everything.

I got out of bed this morning right around 8:30. I just could bear to lay there any longer, after fighting the battle all night. I had a cup of coffee, (got it all by myself too!!) and watched the morning news with a glazed look about me, I'm sure. My wife was up, showered, folded laundry, and cleaned the kitchen before I had even stood up. Makes you feel like a big lump.

I feel like I have to keep reassuring her, and my over concerned mother (Mom lives in one of my apartments in the building next to my house, so she is ALWAYS "popping by") that this is only temporary. They have never seen me in this condition. I know they are unsure of what to do, or how to help. I get it. But what I would really like to say is "STOP!!! LEAVE ME THE HELL ALONE!! There is nothing you can do!". How do you go about saying that without actually saying THAT? I love them to death, but right now, I don't even want to be around myself, let alone a very overbearing "support" system.

I keep finding posts in different threads concerning WD support meds. Does it bother anyone else besides me, that we take a medicine for absolutely EVERYTHING? In this process, we get the shits. Therefore we take imodium. We can't sleep, therefore we take a benzo. We get migrains, therefore we take whatever for that. We have crawling skin, hypertension, and hot/cold sweats, therefore we take Clonidine. I say this, because it's what I find my self doing for the last 2 days. WTF!? I am trying to get off of one thing, but I am using 4 new things to combat it. 4 new things that don't seem to help much, I might add.
That being said, I have not taken anything this morning, except the imodium. (otherwise I can only type 2 or 3 words before I had to get to the bathroom.)

Another thing I would like to mention, and ask y'all about. Does anyone find it ABSOLUTELY INFURIATING that the same people who encouraged you to stop Subs, are now the people telling you "I won't think any less of you if you have to go back on it...". This started, for me, the first day WD symptoms presented. I feel like telling them how I really feel about that, but I will just tell y'all instead. I warned them. I told them it would not be pretty, I would not be myself, and that they were in for the ride of their life. (Love my idioms!) I know it is tough on them, but seriously, don't encourage me to go back. I don't want to go back. I just want them to let me get though this stage.

My wife wanted me to go shopping with her today...... Yeah... that didn't happen. It took every bit of might I could muster, just to stand through a shower. I did try though. I described the way I feel this morning as a flu of all flus. With her being an NP, I tried to use an analogy that she could relate to. She is very book savvy about the technicals of WD, but has no personal experience with it. I compared it to taking her botox away. She simply said.."I couldn't live without that." I said "There you go."

Thank you all for your continued support. It took me almost an hour to type all of this. I need a nap.


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 Post subject: Re: Day 3...
PostPosted: Sun Nov 10, 2013 2:55 am 
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It is so normal for you to feel edgy right now. And feeling angry is common too.

I understand that you don't want your supporters to change their tune and tell you it's alright to get back on sub, especially since you're only 3 days off so far. I'm sure that they are just having a hard time with the thought of you suffering.

I do think that our culture is much too prone to popping pills for everything and expecting a quick fix. However, it doesn't bother me that people use other medications to help them off suboxone or other opiates. If you can do it and it makes you feel better to do without comfort meds, more power to you! The reason it doesn't bother me when people do use comfort meds, however, is because many of them do not induce dependency, and they are a much lesser problem to get off of than an opiate. Obviously, I'm not including benzos in that statement.

I wish you the best in your bid to stay off opiates, including sub. The only way I would change my support is if you were in danger of relapsing. Then I WOULD encourage you to get back on subs so that you didn't overdose and die.

Amy

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 Post subject: Re: Day 3...
PostPosted: Sun Nov 10, 2013 10:42 am 
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WOW twostepj, just read this aloud and my wife said, "that sounds just like you did". I am 3 weeks in today, and man all I can say is the fight is absolutely worth it. Not sure how long of a user you WERE, but it made me all the more determined to stop the crazy groundhog day life I was living. Three days in is the big one, or at least it was for me, because it was then that I had that first taste of clarity I hadn't realized I'd lost, it's been a wild ride for sure.

You know there are a ton of people out there that would LOVE to have the support you describe, I also wanted to be alone, misery doesn't always like company, and I didn't want ANYONE to see me like that! BUT....I was forced to go out of the house one day(3 days in), it was a few hours of me interacting with others, man I could barely get in/out of my truck, all I could think of was relief, (to be honest I tried to score on the way to my destination). On the way home, tunes CRANKED I had the BEST feeling ever of SOBRIETY, it was enough for me to not look again to score, and to see this through, finish my ride. I realized then that the best thing for me was to FORCE myself to get OUT, I was taking off on my bike every free moment I had, I was releasing natural endorphins that I had conditioned my body to receive from opiates. Best advice I have is force yourself to get out of the house, maybe alone first, but you have to get those riding(dancing 2 step?) legs under you again, its key.

I stated above what I remember what riding and music meant for me, but I was just reminded HOW good they were/are. She said the difference was incredible, and each day got better. The first week was a blur for ME, not for my Supporter(s).

Be prepared for the emotions, or maybe prepare your wife if she hasn't ever seen the one's most men keep hidden, man what a roller coaster that has been for me, still. It happened again when I read your post, I simply couldn't get through it because I know what your going through, and selfishly because I am not there anymore. Great news is, your only a few days from really starting to see and feel what I called The Awakening, that was a big motivator for me, I simply didn't want to give that up again.

IT'S WORTH IT! KEEP UP THE GOOD FIGHT, YOU CAN DO THIS!!!

Faith was a HUGE thing for me too.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 1:37 pm 
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I am at a breaking point. My support system is seemingly crumbling around me. My constant mood swings, insomnia, no energy or motivation, sick to my stomach, pain, etc is just about to get the best of me, as well as everyone in my home. I have worn those around me thin, and now it is nearly being insisted that I go back to my doc. I had to go to an MD this morning to try to get some comfort. Neurontin, for headaches, sleep and mood, Atarax for the skin crawling across my ENTIRE body, and Phenergan for the nausea and sleep. I have never taken so many pills in my life, unless it was opiates.

I called off of work today and tomorrow, which I haven't done in over 5 years. There has to be something completely wrong for me to call off. I am simply exhausted. I may have literally only slept 3 hours since Friday. I had no idea it would be this bad.

My wife just sent me a txt, pleading for me to go back. My answer was, "I can't, because I took an Adderall this morning so I could move around. I won't pass a urine now". I know Adderall is as addictive as anything else, but I am not an upper type person in the least. My wife takes them, and one of our children as well. It works great for them, but here I sit... on the couch, unable to walk much further than the closest bathroom. (Thank God we have multiple!) She says she just wants ME back. As I stated in my original post, she has never known me without subs.

Like I said, I am exhausted. My support is dwindling, and hope is fleeing.
Romeo, Tiny, Browneyed, Ryd... what should I do??


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 1:56 pm 
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Only you can choose. I'm sorry, but I can't give you a better answer than that. How many days have you been off? What dose did you come off?

If you feel that you would rather be on Suboxone, then that is okay. Sometimes people just aren't ready to be off, as they thought they were. It's not a bad thing to admit defeat. These withdrawals, and coming off of Suboxone successfully, is very hard.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 2:03 pm 
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You didnt ask me but here gos...ask youself again why you jumped to begin with.
Why?.. If the reasons cant over ride tbe need to keep going forward with this WD then call your Dr asap and tell him/her the truth about what has happened to you at this point.As Dr junig has written,just what is "clean enough".im very sorry your this hurt. And now you posted about taken all those other pills for comfort.?.. There is NOTHING WROUG with going back to Subs..NOTHING..
bn on them 3 years. 6mgs.(shrugs). Idk..saw this an thought is ppst..tbese others will sjrely be aloug..best of luck..an call your dr...razor 55..


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 2:27 pm 
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Mama, I was on 2mg/day, then tapered to .25mg/day. I think just jumped too soon. This is day 5 off. I can NOT call off of work, however I also can't do my job in this condition, either. I have a very physically demanding career. I am simply not capable of doing it now.

I know it's only day 5, but seriously..WTH!??


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 2:29 pm 
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TwoStep,

I'm so sorry to hear that your really struggling right now. I am going to agree with what Razor said, and that is there is NOTHING at all wrong with going back on the subs, especially if it makes your life better to be on them rather than be off of them.

You wouldn't be any kind of failure whatsoever by doing so either. Some people SHOULDN'T be off them, and some should probably remain on them for a good long while. You just have to decide if your quality of life would benefit more by you remaining on sub therapy?

It sure looks to me like it would definitely benefit you at least right now to continue with the subs. At least until some additional time has passed. There's absolutely no sense or reason to be doing any kind of suffering right now on the fence about it. You could always get off at a later time if you decide to do so.

Based on what you have said in your post, and you asking me personally, I would go right back on them if I were in your shoes right now. There would be no question in my mind about it either. I had a decision to make recently about whether to take them again or not. I was having terrible cravings and chose to take a one-time dose. I also told everyone that if that happens again, and I have the same type reasons, then I myself would not hesitate to get right back on them too.

So my response to you is do what you feel is BEST for you personally, and in my own personal opinion I would get right back on the subs until a later time and then perhaps reconsider getting off. I would call the sub doctor as Razor suggested and tell the the honest truth and you need back on them immediately. Tell them about any other drug you have also taken.....just be honest and I'm sure they will help you out of this.

Has to be your choice as Monkey Mom said too. Think it over, but please whatever you decide you are NOT any kind of failure if you do go back on them!

Best wishes, hugs, and prayers headed your way! Keep us informed please.

Karen xoxo


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 3:18 pm 
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Hey twostepj,


I'm also sorry to hear you're struggling, we just never know how people will adjust to not having suboxone in their system. Some get off easy and some struggle severely. I think preparation of the mind helps, but it definitely isn't everything. When you expect the absolute worst, anything short of that is good news. When you expect to get off lightly, the slightest symptoms will weigh you down, mentally and physically. You are "sick" right now. Getting off this medication is a process and doesn't happen overnight or even in a few days. If you had the flu, everyone (your wife, family, work) would understand that you were 'out of commission' for several days and would let you be. Your body needs to heal itself and this just goes with the territory. If this is something you want then you need to dedicate the time to letting yourself re-adjust and getting back on track. Ideally your wife would stop putting pressure on you to be yourself, but I know it doesn't work that way for people who don't understand.

Having said all that, there is absolutely nothing wrong with staying on suboxone if that's what you want (or need.) I just want you to realize that everything you mentioned is a bit par for the course. So if being off suboxone is what you want, you'll have to push through because it will get better.

Btw, how much adderrall are you taking? That will kill your sleep if you're not used to it and make your following days even more unbearable.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 3:44 pm 
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You can go back to Suboxone anytime you want, you certainly don't need our permission. If you were having cravings for opiates, I would encourage you to go back, but you're not, so if I were, I would suck it up and press on.

I understand all the symptoms you're having, I had them all in spades. It sucks dirty, stinky, nasty ass, but they do eventually get better.

Neurontin is usually helpful during wd and Atarax (Hydroxyzine) is as well. I took phenergan during my wd, but all it did was make me sleepy as hell with no sleep to be had. I felt like a zombie when I took it.

For me, Clonidine was still the very best thing I took during my wd. If I were you, I'd steer clear of the Adderall, I don't think it's going to help anyway?

From the sound of your post, you're at peak wd. Many of us have faced "the breaking point", but chose to push through. Wd is NOT easy, it's pretty much inhumane, but it's the only way to the other side. (Unless you get back on Sub's and taper to micrograms, then the wd is lighter.)

Check out this link, it's a motivational speech that has helped many here. It's 2:42 long, well worth your time. Every single word may not apply, but some of it will.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ewqnfufbs9I

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 4:11 pm 
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I was going to say the same as Romeo. I just feel its worth it to press on. You tapered down, you clearly wanted off.

As Brown Eyed Girl said, what are the reasons you got off? Can you remember back to when you were on them and how you felt? Is it worth pressing through this week to be clean once and for all? Are you having cravings now? If not, I suggest trying to keep it up. 5 days is going to be the peak! It's only going to get better from here.

Regardless, we will support your decision. I think the most important thing, though, is for your wife to do some reading. It's important she understand how hard this is for you & that you need support to PUSH, not fall back! An addict will always take what they can get if someone is telling them to. Especially our spouses. Hell if my husband said "it's okay to get high babe, here you go!" I don't know if I could resist.

Anyway, let us know what you decide. Again there's nothing wrong with going back to Sub.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 7:31 pm 
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6 Months or More
6 Months or More

Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2011 8:32 pm
Posts: 249
It's only day 5 like you said. If you have the ability to hold on another 2-3 days I promise you it will get much better.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:12 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:13 pm
Posts: 40
Location: MB,SC
You know... I actually feel different today. Almost as if I can get off my ass and do something. I don't want to go back on. I am not having cravings. Adderall is not an issue, yesterday I just took on 20mg to try to gain a bit if motivation. I am not worried about that.

I actually got sleep last night. I woke up feeing more refreshed than I have in a week. I have a little bit of a headache, but other than that, I feel better. Better. Not great.

I know I am in a battle, but this is a battle I can win. Y'all are so supportive, and I don't even know y'all. But with everything y'all have said, I am NOT going back on. I am going to suck it up, (Romeo) and soldier on.

Thank you so much for your support.


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Fond Du Lac Psychiatry
Dr. Jeffrey Junig, M.D., Ph.D.

  • Board Certified Psychiatrist
  • Asst Clinical Professor, Medical College of Wisconsin

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