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PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 2:39 am 
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Hi guys and gals, my name is Bryan and I'm new here and would really appreciate a little advice/support. I have been on 1 mg of sub for over a year now and have decided it is time to stop. I know it wasn't a huge dose, but I stopped yesterday and am already experiencing some withdrawals. Right now it is more mental than physical (other than the inability to sleep), but it has only been about 36 hours so I know the worst is yet to come. Does anyone know any OTC medications that may help at all? I know nothing will make a huge impact but I've read all sorts of different things that people say may help.
Also anything encouraging about whether it is possible to get back to normal or not would be much appreciated. PLEASE don't post anything negative, such as how I'll be going through hell for a few weeks or things like that. I already know I'll be miserable for a while, so please only positive things. Anything I can think of to help me get through this would be very much appreciated. I'm very worried of what's to come, and I'm already thinking twice about stopping.
Before starting subs I was taking maybe 4 hydrocodone a day, and have been on 1 mg of subs for over a year now, so I've never been on huge doses, but I know I will still have a terrible time withdrawing, as it's been an everyday thing. Thank you all for any support or advice any of you can offer, it is very much appreciated.


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PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 9:01 am 
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Hi Bsouth,

How are you holding up? It's a bonus for you that you were on a low dose for only about a year, that will make stopping much easier for you. But it doesn't mean it won't be a struggle, you are still dependent on a very strong opiate. So don't feel silly that you are having a hard time. Is there a reason that you want to jump from 1mg instead of trying to taper first? It makes it much easier if you taper down to a low dose and then step off from there. Of course, you can do it from 1mg, but it's less painfull going with a taper. I don't know your situation though, I just wanted to mention that in case it was a possibility for you.

If you decide to stick to your original plan there are a few things that can help you. Vitamins like b6 and b12 are really good for increasing energy. L-Tyrosene used in combination with the b vitamins has been recommended here alot and it
is also in the Thompson Recipe for opiate detox. If you go with the L-Tyrosene just make sure you take a large dose, not what's recommended on the bottle. I think it recommends taking 4-5 capsules in the morning, but I would check that on the thompson recipe website to be sure. Also, a good multi-vitamin can't hurt. For intestinal issues use Loperimide (Immodium), there are opiate receptors in your intestinal tract that go crazy when you stop opiates, the Loperimide acts on these receptors to calm them. Again, double the dose recommended on the packaging. I have heard some people claim that the Loperimide actually takes alot of their WD symptoms away, all it does for me is take away all those intestinal problems but that is very helpfull if you have trouble with it.

Also, and this is a big one, try to get some light excercize every day. I know you aren't going to want to do ANYTHING, but it will help you sooooo much to get up and walk around a bit. It releases natural endorphins or something, I don't know, I just know it helps. If you get those terrible aches and pains hot baths really help. I have spent untold hours in my bathtub when I've been detoxing...

If you have access to comfort meds from your doctor I have heard clonodine really helps with the temperature fluxuations and general restless feeling from WD. It's a blood pressure medicine, and it seems that alot of doctors are willing to prescribe it for this. You can check with your doctor.

Above all, just be patient with yourself. It might seem like the WD is never ending, but it does get better if you stick with it long enough. I've heard some people say the WD peaks somewhere around 10 days and gets better from there. But it is different for everyone, and you being on a lower dose will probably help you alot. If you go into it prepared to battle you will do well. And if you decide you want to try the taper let us know and we can help you with some pointers to come down MUCH EASIER.

-Q


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PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 9:44 am 
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Hey Bryan,

Welcome to the forum!!

Seeing as you've been on 1mg of Suboxone for a year, I don't think your wd's are going to be bad at all. You will feel uncomfortable, but they shouldn't knock you down too bad.

The best med I took during my wd was Clonidine (not to be confused Klonopin!!!). Clonidine doesn't eliminate your wd, but it sure knocks the symptoms down a peg or two. Because Clonidine is blood pressure med, you need to go to a doctor and get your BP checked first.

Like Qhorse said, a good multivitamin won't hurt either.

One of the absolute best things you can do for yourself during wd is to keep your mind and body busy. If you're just sitting around, chances are you're going to be focusing on not feeling well and that doesn't help. Force yourself to get up and do things.

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PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 8:30 pm 
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Hey Bryan, i def think its possible for you to get through this! Based on your history of use, i dont think its gonna be a piece of cake or anything, but if your determined to do this it shouldnt be too bad. And remember the longer you use and the higher doses you use the more your brain chemistry gets out of whack (wds are basically your brain saying wtf) im not trying to scare you or anything, im just trying to say that by going through the wds now, your probably saving yourself from an even worse wd later. Does that make sense? I think its totally possible for you to return to a "normal" state as long as you give your brain time to heal! If you decide you want to go back on suboxone and taper off, thats ok too.

As far as things to help comfort you durning wd, i think you already got some great advice above. If you would like to also look into taking an amino acid complex. Amino acids like l-thyrosine can help heal your brain a little bit faster, and also a good multivitamin and some b vitamins. Try to eat healthy and force yourself to excercise your brain will thank you for the endorphins!

Best of luck!


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PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2013 10:15 pm 
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I do not think there are enough studies to suggest coming off lower doses of bup is any more beneficial in elevating withdrawals then someone either cold turkeying or jumping from 2mg or higher. It seems at those low does sub is very potent and fills those receptors then higher doses do. I have read too many people still experiencing symptoms whether they taper or jump from a low dose to suggest tapering will minimize withdrawals any more then someone jumping cold turkey or high dose..Some people have also suggested jumping from higher doses your letting your body taper off, whereas tapering down you tend to tend to feel withdrawals that much more because of the potency of bup at those doses.

When I was on 1.5mg I actually felt more clearer, had better sex drive, had endorphins all over the place after exercise, even OTC worked, but now on small doses such as 0.5 and lower it seems am in more of a fog, can feel bup blocking out any other meds, do not feel mentally good even working out, no sex drive at all and other symptoms including sleeping more now then I did at higher doses, this only tells me there might be some truth when people claim low doses can give you more if not similar symptoms to one jumping off at 2mg and not tapering. Its as though the bup is fully charging the receptors at these low doses. I do not know but I just have a hunch on this being true in my opinion.


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PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 1:25 am 
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Thanks a ton guys. Day 2, and the worst part so far has been the cold sweats and the chills. Mentally I feel terrible, and it's very hard just for me to peel myself out of bed. Trying to drink as much water as possible and also got some vitamin water. Started taking multi vitamins, will try some B- vitamins tomorrow. Has anyone heard anything one way or the other about niacin? I know people that use to to help pass drug tests because it helps flush your system out, was wondering if that has any application towards withdrawals. Thanks again for the advice.
Oh and I thought about tapering but I tried taking a 3rd my normal dose for a few days and felt pretty crappy, so I figured it'd be best to get it all over with at once instead of tapering over a month and feeling crappy that whole month.


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PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 9:36 am 
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Ya know, i think i have heard something about niacin and flushing out your system, however i cant recall the details of how its done. I do know that niacin is one of the b vitamins. Even if you can flush the drug out of your system it dosent necessarily mean less wds or less time spent wding. Your brain still has to go through the process of "rewiring" itself back to a normal pre drug use state, and only time can fo that (vitamins and amino acids and such can help but it still takes time) A "normal" brain that is not on opiates creates its own endorphins that closely resemble opiates, and when you give your brain a supply of opiates everyday your brain becomes lazy and "forgets" how to make its own, so when you stop taking an opiate your brain has to go through the process of relearning how to make endorphins again. It takes time, but i think your relativly short history of use and lower dose will definatily make things a bit easier for you anf help you get back to a pre-opiate state faster. At least i hope so!


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PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 1:00 pm 
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After long term opiate use... Some things change in the brain. You are now an addict, a different person. So your brain will never "rewire" itself to a pre-opiate use state. Just isn't in the cards. I'm not saying opiates cause mass damage or anything... Just changes.


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PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 1:18 pm 
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MovieMaker1 wrote:
After long term opiate use... Some things change in the brain. You are now an addict, a different person. So your brain will never "rewire" itself to a pre-opiate use state. Just isn't in the cards. I'm not saying opiates cause mass damage or anything... Just changes.


MovieMaker...NEVER is a pretty strong word. I'm not sure if that's 100% accurate. It kinda makes it sound as if it's hopeless to ever stay sober without ORT. I don't think that's what you meant but it's how it came across. Do you have anything to back this up? Because it's my understanding that it takes time, maybe alot of time...but your brain will eventually heal itself. Please clarify, this can be pretty distressing to someone in the throes of WD trying to stay sober.


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PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 3:59 pm 
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Day 3 and still by far the worst part is the chills and cold sweats. I highly doubt there's much to do about this but if anyone has any suggestions it would be much appreciated. Thanks again for the responses.


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PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 4:20 pm 
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Brian,

The clonodine is supposed to help with that. Check with your doctor, they might be able to call it in for you.


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PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 4:23 pm 
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Qhorse, i THINK i understand what moviemaker was trying to say. I think what he meant by saying you will never return to a pre-opiate state, is that once you cross the line from from dependance to addiction, you will always techinically be an "addict" even if you do return to a state where you feel normal and happy without opiates. IMO just because you are technically an addict dosent mean that you cant live a happy, productiv e life without opiates, it just means that you will have to put in some work to keep your sobriety and always be aware of our addictive tendencies. I think that most sober addicts will have those fleeting and recurring thoughts that "i can use recreationally, i wont become addicted again, just one more time" and that we have no control over, that is most likely a part of our brain now, but we can learn how to deal with those thoughts and cravings, and relearn how to live again. That does not mean we cant live a happy, meaningfull life, it just means we have to be aware and watch our backs. I think thats what moviemaker was trying to say, but he could have put it a little more gently to someone who at this time is probably feeling like the wd is never
going to end. It WILL end bryan, with time your brain will learn how to function again without opiates, theres just no way to go around it but through it and just know you WILL get there.


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PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2013 3:59 pm 
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Hey Brian, I hope the withdrawals are going good and you're fighting through them! I agree with Qhorsegal and Romeo in the first couple of replies. Those OTC meds and prescriptions can really help. Also, as you know the withdrawals can seem to last forever if you're constantly thinking about them. So I suggest trying to get your mind occupied with something else. Anything you enjoy that you can focus on. Video games, puzzles, scary movies, reading a book, or anything else that takes your mind off of it. Another way to feel better is with a hot bath or shower, as well as some sex or masterbation or both! Excercise and eating healthy will help your body heal too.

Good luck and keep us posted!

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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 4:31 am 
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I'm on day 4 with no subs, coming off a half year of being on them, but jumped off at 1mg...sweats started on the 3rd night and haven't stopped all day...i slept fine nights 1 and 2 with no sweats, but even though i sweat all night on the 3rd night, i still slept...so here i am. wide awake on day 4 at 4:10 am...insomnia has begun. i have always heard that exercise is best for detox but never felt like doing it...until today. i was desperate. i started moving around at 2pm and actually started feeling better...just cleaning the house and walking my dogs through the exhaustion and everything...but i actually felt better.
the best way to get over the physical part is to LET YOUR BODY detox ONLY what it has to...stay away from alcohol, caffeine, sugars, processed foods, etc...things that add to the toxins the liver is already trying to rid your body of (if you can't stay away from those things, take milk thistle to protect your liver).

MY MORNING SUPPLEMENTS: I take 1 Alpha lipoic acid tablet with 2 "B-Stress" capusules by Soloray for all vitamin B needs, and 1 CoQ10 capsule. Then i take L-tyrosine for dopamine production and energy, Hyland's homeopathic mag/phos for cramps and RLS (because my blood pressure is too low for my doc to prescribe clonadine).

I eat organic green veg and berries as my only fruit (less sugar) and try to juice them or eat them raw to give my liver a chance to get this suboxone out of me. I take 3 omega-3 capsules a day, and spirulina for antioxidants and energy...spirulina saved my life before i relapsed and i'm a hardcore believer in superfoods.

i have had Hepatitis C for 7 years, and before my relapse, i started on this super clean diet. (hippie, granola. tree hugger, whatever), but i know it worked because i brought my liver enzymes to a normal level in less than a year from dietary changes and exercise. So, after this suboxone is out of me, i have to keep up with a healthy lifestyle for my mental health reasons and in order to prevent another relapse. going back to my 12 step meetings (i'm a Buddhist so i only go to Buddhist groups because it makes sense to me).

ANYWAY:
my PM supplements: 1 5-htp (for production of serotonin), Hyland's homeopathic kali/phos for tension/anxiety/sleeplessness, and sometimes i'll drop a few Valerian drops in my water but i have to be careful because of my liver damage. Cal-Mag supplements help with leg cramps and get me off to sleep eventually...niacin before bed helps as well as long as i eat 30 minutes beforehand or take it immediately before i crash out to avoid the flush. it speeds up the detox.

as you can see, i'm a firm believer in alternative medicine, i just have an 18 year history of opiate relapse. i've spent the last 11 years with more sober time than relapse time so i am grateful to have become so interested in alternative medicine...and also i never wished i asked my doc to help me detox.. i would have rather detoxed "regular" opiates than this stuff...but we will make it!

please let me know how youre doing and send some words of encouragement! any and all of you!


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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 8:52 am 
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Hi there, and welcome!

I just have a quick question =). Are your subs prescribed by a Dr? I am just curious why you would be put on Sub if you were only taking 4 hydros a day. Someone please correct me - but is this common practice? It seems sort of like killing a spider with an AK-47.

Please do not think that I am in any way trying to downplay your addiction, I am just honestly confused.

I do hope that the WD's pass quickly and that you are able to find the comfort meds or supplements to get you through!

~Amy

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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 9:09 am 
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Hey isaydig

im a big believer in superfoods and vitamins/supplements/herbs to help heal and nourish the body too! Ive never tried spirulina(sp) by itself, but i always buy this smoothie/juice drink that has it in there with blue algea and cholorella(sp).

im really curious about the buddhist 12 step groups (i didnt even know they existed) im not a buddhist or anything, but im also not very religious. I guess out of all the religions i relate with buddhism the most, so maybe it would be a better fit for me. can you tell me a little more about that, like is it the same with the whole higher power thing?

Anyway sound like your kicking the wds ass!

Squeaky, i just seen your reply, and i almost died laughing at your refrence to killing a spider with an ak47! That was awesome, you made my day so far!!


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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 2:21 pm 
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i had to reread my first post because i didn't recall mentioning that i was only on 4 hydros a day...but then i realized you were asking Bryan about why his doc would put him on Subs for such a low dosage..sadly, mine did the same, but i was talking more than 8mg of xanax a day in addition to the opiates. i have been in the rooms of a 12 step program for over a decade and NEVER did i EVER believe in getting off a drug with another drug (especially the same drug? and a higher dose??) my doc is a recovering addict who i have known from meetings over the years and i "trusted" her. i didn't even do my research on the suboxone...i just wanted to not hurt (my sick addicted mind likes to convince me that i can somehow relapse and get a 'free ride"??) Insanity for sure. She started me out on 24mg a day for 2 months....and then i FINALLY (too late, though) decided to do some research. apparently i could have gotten by with less than 1 mg a day for less than 2 weeks and gotten off this stuff without watching another 5 1/2 months pass. i tried to taper myself and my doc chewed me out for it...quoting lines from the big book of AA, telling me that 'MY efforts' got me here, so how could i trust myself to get myself sober?? HOW?? HOW?? here's how: against medical advice. if it were up to my doc, i'd be on this for at least a year...and i was only taking 40-50mg of hydros a day for a little less than 3 weeks...i was more worried about the benzo withdrawal so i "believed" that this would take care of BOTH? wrong.
So, now i'm on my 5th day without subs and i still haven't gotten off the benzos, but somehow i've managed to taper myself down. For me, at least, benzo WD is so much worse and scarier than opiate WDs....i'm afraid to call my doc to tell her i've tapered myself off her insanely high dose of subs and once i've detoxed the opiates, i'm supposed to somehow let her know the subs don't help with benzo withdrawals....and AGAIN, i need help getting off the xanax...what will she do? throw me back on the subs? i should have just done this cold turkey before i was in this deep on a higher dosage of opiates.
If i can't get honest with my doctor who is a recovering addict, who can i get honest with??
These are probably just heightened fears that i just have to force myself to get over....i'm not hurting anyone but myself by lying, i know.
well, at least i'm getting off these subs for good. first and last time i'll opt to get off dope with dope. momentary lapse of sanity...i've always said hell no i'd never let a doctor become my "legalized" dealer.
Time to get well. Healthy. Honest.

with myself first.
thank you everyone for reminding me i'm not alone <3


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PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2013 4:16 pm 
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In my last post i meant to say, amy in refrence to the spider comment, lol woops i must have seen the name squeaky somewhere and it stuck in my mind.

Anywho isaydig, opiate wd can be extremely uncomfortable. I know you know this, but benzo wd(from what ive heard anyway) can be fatal. Please make you you taper them slowly, or go to a medical supervised detox. 8mg of zanax to me seems like alot! At certain times in my life ive been prescribed zanxa for a short term situation, and i remember a half of one wpuld knock me out cold!! Lol, i have pretty much zero benzo tolorance. Maybe you should just be honest with your doctor/sponser that you would rather try an abstinance based recovery rather than a medication assisted sobriety? Did you use your time on suboxone to work on yourself? Ive been taking the sub for 2 years but only recently have i figured out that i need to be in some other type of recovery like the 12 steps. I dont know why it hasent really clicked with mw until now, but i now understand that i can do this alone. I have never done a 12 step program, and honestly im scared. Im scared because its totally new to me, because i dont know if i will be "shuned upon" for being on suboxone
and especially because i dont get sub from a doc(i have no insurance and i cant pay out of pocket) i know its not ideal that i get them on the street but its better than being in active addiction. And i have always kept myself on a low dose 2-4 mg a day most of the time 4, but if i did see a doc i feel like thau wpuld try and put me on a ridicously high dose (16-24mg). Im finding my way

Please be careful about getting off the benzos. Dont be afraid to tell your doc, its hard but the truth will set you free. Gee its so easy to give others advice, but its hard to take that very same advice yourself. I think thats the nature of addiction, our addict minds convince us to do things we know we shouldnt. Im still learning how to switch that addict mind off. Im kinda young and new to all this, ill be 25 in september i started using at 18 so almost 7 years of addiction. Im so lost on what to do cuz i dont have a doc i know thats the right way to do this but my financial situation is very fragile i pay rent, electric, car, doing the whole balancing act with 5 different credit cards. Somehow ive managed to maintain very good credit through my addiction i want to keep it that way. Boy im in a tough spot, Maybe it will fall apart and i will finally hit my real rock botton and be able to get the help i need waiting for that beautiful disaster to happen ( almost like a blessing in disguise) wow im starting to ramble here sry for that. I hope you make it thrpugh this safely isaydig, you seem like a big hearted person as well :-)


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PostPosted: Wed May 22, 2013 4:41 am 
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beautiful disaster,
i know how you feel about starting 12 step meetings. other than my VERY first one when i was 18...my REAL first one was in when i was 22 (I'm 34 now) and I was hurting so badly i had no other options. i ended up (luckily) finding a Friday night 10pm candlelight "young people's" meeting and everyone was so welcoming...instant best friends. and most of them are still around today (other than the ones who either relapsed and never came back or relapsed and died)...but the group stayed pretty strong and I will still go to that same location for 8pm "regular" meetings on occasion just because i love everyone there so much. i'd love to say no one in meetings will judge you, but it's just not the truth. the truth is, it doesn't matter what anyone thinks, because you're there for you....and those who spend their time "shunning" you are the ones you want to avoid at ALL COSTS. you'll find people you click with. i just sat there quietly listening to certain people who sounded happy and free and then i clung to them like crazy. i got a sponsor immediately then another, then another, then another, until i finally found someone i could truly be honest with. i've let my sponsor know i'm detoxing with suboxone and i didn't get any judgment...just some sympathy...everyone knows how hard it is to get off of methadone and suboxone. there are people in the meetings who will spew crap like "if you're on subs or methadone you're not sober!"...and WHO CARES! you're not taking it to get high, you're taking it to stay 'clean'...you won't have to be on it forever. the thing i learned over the past decade about addiction is that if left "untreated" it only gets worse. the drug is just a SYMPTOM of a larger problem...what's the problem, you ask??---ME! we are the problem. selfishness and self centeredness. we think it's all about us, we think we are in the WORST situation, we think we've done the WORST things...but you learn super fast that if it has a name, at least half the people in the meetings have done it too :) i felt so alone before i started meetings and even for a while in the beginning but i sat around long enough to get comfortable because i was in so much pain. i honestly thought i would never relapse again, but i basically started feeling so good being sober that i just got lazy and stopped working on myself, my spirituality suffered, my home life suffered, and i said "F" it. so here i am in this chat room with some of the best people in the world. we are amazing people with problems. we aren't problem people though. we can all get through this! you basically summed up untreated addiction in your last reply when you said you realized it just gets harder trying to do it alone. that's the thing...addiction has to be TREATED. obviously there is no cure, but we definitely have a daily reprieve from dope, based on the maintenance of our spiritual condition. it's so simple but it's so freaking hard! all i have to do is the "next right thing", clean up "my side of the street", and help others to achieve sobriety after working all 12 steps myself. i just realized that after over a decade in the meetings, the "God" thing drove me out. they say you just need a "higher power" but the AA big book constantly mentions the word GOD and i just can't get down with that. we have a buddhist meetup group every sunday at my house and that's how i maintain my spirituality.....i just got lazy:( after i'm off this suboxone crap, i'm definitely letting my doc know about the xanax because i know it can be fatal. and i have to tell her the suboxone didn't help me get off the xanax. i just hope she will help me taper since i've been buying them "off the streets". first things first though. this is my 2nd night without any sleep so i'm just sitting around watching the minutes tick slooooowly by..hoping my mind will soon realize how absolutely exhausted my body is. Insomnia is the worst. Thanks for being here to chat with, share experience, strength and hope with. i really appreciate it more than you know!


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PostPosted: Wed May 22, 2013 10:44 am 
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I was put on subs instead of my 4-5 norcos a day. my tolerance was so high after six years. Im also going through wd's for my first time from the sub, and its horrible! the exercise helps and I take vitamins, but I can't get over that feeling of being shocked every time I move, I might as well stuck a knife in my light socket. day 4,5,6,7, and 8 were pretty bad. I jumped from 2-4 mgs of sub to norco 10's and still have horrible wd's (worst is the mornings) I think I made a mistake going on the subs. I should've went on here to realize.how strong it is. all the docs offer me whatever I want I just didn't want to have anything than my norco. the subs only worked on me for pain for two weeks. now my norco doesnt work even after 10 days.... im amazed at how strong subs are, and was not counseled about them.


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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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