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PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2010 3:27 am 
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First off, I'd like to introduce myself. My name is Kim, I'm 21 and I'm a full time college student. I have been on Suboxone maintenance since December 1st 2009, and this seems like a great forum for support and advice since I am in the midst of slowly weaning off subs. :) I haven't had much support from people who have successfully recovered (I don't know many in RL), but have a amazing group of people in my life, however none of them have ever been addicts. I go to a outpatient doctor who knows his stuff, isn't judgmental and has helped me immensely. I have been sober for roughly 7 months, with very few bumps in the road. However, I'd like to tell my story of how I transformed from a partying coed to a full fledged opiate junkie, and how I got back my life. I'll try and make this as short as possible, but this is my first time typing out my story.

I was a 19 year old college student when I met my ex "Matt". I had had a rough freshman year to say the least, I was just finishing my finals. After me and my (then) long distance high school sweetheart broke up, I was devastated, depressed, and apathetic. I had always had bad anxiety disorders and ADHD. I had been arrested for underage drinking on the beach, tattled on by my roommate for smoking weed in the dorms, and gotten a severe case of mono which ended up inflaming my liver. I'm guessing the binge drinking 6 nights a week didn't help. 5 people I knew passed away in 2007-2008, 4 of them from mixing opiates (with cocaine mostly.) One of them was extremely close to me. I was slipped some kind of roofie in my drink towards the end of the year... and long story short I was raped.

So, when I met this intelligent, attractive & hardworking engineering major, he seemed to be exactly who I needed. He hardly drank or partied, just smoked some weed, and worked his ass off in school. Our personalities couldn't be more different.. he knew math, I was intrigued by literature, philosophy, psychology.. I've always been a free spirit, but at this point in my life I knew I needed someone to help me keep my feet on the ground instead of in the clouds. He adored me. He seemed perfect. Me, being a passionate, impulsive Sagittarius moved in with him for the summer so I could stay in town last minute. I thought he was what I needed. I stopped drinking so much, stopped partying as much, and though I didn't see it then, stopped seeing my friends as much.

A month or so into the relationship, I discovered he used roxies, blues, whatever you want to call them. 30mg instant release oxycodone. He swore it was only recreationally, but eventually I saw it becoming a problem, quickly. He was weak and lethargic or hyper and wild, all the time. I researched everything about it, inpatient and outpatient rehabs, all of it. I already was very against it & scared because of the deaths of my friends and the way I had seen it take over many others, in Florida it was already becoming almost an epidemic. For months & months, I didn't touch it, I did nothing but try and help him. I knew he was lying, I knew he was doing questonable things to get the money to support it, I'm not stupid but.. I thought I loved him. I thought I could maybe marry him. In my mind, he was perfect except for his problem.

Eventually, he realized he had a problem after one day of being extremely dopesick. He told his mother, she put him in outpatient, and I thought he was staying sober... but his drug tests didn't say so. I was caught in the crossfire, his doctor actually told him to dump ME because he told him I smoked pot. Me, who had stopped drinking and partying and hated oxys? The one who had pushed him into to getting help in the first place. Stupid old man. I still think the guy was a idiot, thinking I was the bad influence when really Matt had begun to control me by guilt tripping me. My friends would call, he would beg me to stay home and take care of him. My friends would come over, he would embarrass me & them by constantly being sickeningly all over me, messed up and hyper and annoying. I was still blind.

However, I don't know when it happened, but I woke up and realized that though I wasn't partying and to outsiders I seemed to have cleaned my life up, I was miserable, isolated, and unhappy. I was in love with a compulsive liar, and I didn't know what to believe. All I knew was that he seemed to care about me more than anyone else. My best friend since I was 15 years old had abandoned me long before this, and I still believe that even though I may have hurt our friendship in one of my drunken stupors, she hurt me the most by making me feel like I was bringing her down after the rape. She offered NO support, and I never got counseling. My problems seemed as paramount as his, yet I didn't even have an excuse! I was just messed up in the head, as much as a drug addict. I had always maybe abused substances, I did a lot of cocaine in junior year of highschool and smoked copius amounts of weed senior year of high school, along with my heavy drinking freshman year. However, I had never had an addiction, except to cigarettes.

I started occasionally doing maybe 7-10 mg of oxycodone occasionally, then up to 15 every other day or so, then 30 mg sometimes. However, I tricked my body into not feeling withdrawals for a long time. When I would go home to see my parents, I would spend most of the time across town 40 min away at Matt's parents, but the time I spent with my own I wouldn't use. My mom is a nurse, and I know she would notice my pupils. However, the first time I remember feeling withdrawals was when my highschool friend who had moved out of state came to visit. We went out on the lake, had a great time (Matt whining that I wasn't with him, we were already fighting on a daily basis) but as I was driving home, I was getting horrible hot and cold sweats and chills, my stomach had a knot... I felt horrible. I knew at once my body had finally become dependent on opiates.

That was around the first 6 months of the relationship. The next 6 are blurry, because much of it is too horrible for me to want to remember. Waiting in cars for hours for our dealer to come, or at the house rolling around in bed watching shitty reality tv, sweating and shaking and puking. Screaming at each other on almost a daily basis, over money, over drugs, over him saying he was giving me a full 30mg instant release when I knew the line (I snorted them) was too small. I remember more than once crying and screaming because I needed more, had no money and he wouldn't give in. Or he'd try and say that I didn't need it, my problem was nothing next to his. (He would force me to take about 10mg at a time like 5-6 times a day, so the ridiculous thing was I hardly ever got high enough to nod at the beginning.) I remember once he punched me in the back of the head so hard I blacked out, and woke up & pretended not to be mad bc I knew he'd be so guilty he'd give me more. We got into physical fights a lot, I definitely had bruises a decent amount of times. We would scream and scream and scream at one another. It was horrible, dark... I hated him at this point. We rarely had sex, somewhat because of the drugs but mostly because I was disgusted with him. I had always loved music, and I never listened to it. I loved art and didn't care. I was the funny, cute, bubbly if somewhat wild one and I had no personality. Drugs drugs drugs.

I had realized he was abusive, controlling, a liar, and a thief. I watched him steal thousands from his father to buy drugs. Every paycheck I had went to him because I "owed" him so much money. (He has since admitted to me he ripped me off on almost every line I snorted.) I was actually doing ok in my spring classes though (it had been a year roughly since we started dating) We did nothing but sit around, go and find drugs, do them, and sit around more and watch tv. I occasionally saw my friends, but I wasn't ready to tell them what my life had become. After I finished my classes, I decided I was going to transfer schools and come back to live with my parents, which was 2 hrs away from where we were living at the time. I told him it was to clean up my life and save money. I also was planning on breaking up with him, but he was so obsessed I knew it was going to be hard. A week later, he decided to move back to his parents house too.

When I got home, I had freedom from him to a point, so I could spend my money how I pleased. Soon I was doing 90mg a day easy, he was probably doing 1000mg average but luckily my parents weren't loaded like his so I never had the means to get a habit so horrible. I found an amazing group of friends, two of which I had known from highschool but who I have gotten close to over the year and have saved my life along with my mother. One is my best girlfriend "Lauren", the other was a old friends with benefits fling from highschool "Dennis". They must have seen something was wrong, but waited for me to tell them. Slowly, I distanced myself from Matt, then after trying to end our relationship a million times, finally did. I had two groups of friends now, the good ones and my junkie "friends." My good friends are quite intelligent, and they've told me since they knew something was wrong but not what. My life was a million times better without Matt, but I still had that damn monkey on my back. I still spent a majority of the time dopesick, trying to find money. Being a (forgive me) attractive, young, blonde woman, it was easier to get cheap prices but I was still running out of money. There are two horrible things I did to get drugs, one was pawning my highschool sweethearts ring for $30, the other was worse.

My mom asked me multiple times if I was using, and finally got it out of me. She tried to just have me do it cold turkey, I told her I needed suboxone etc.. I wasn't ready yet anyway. Then, an amazing thing happened. I went to a music festival in November with my good friends, the ones I found after I ended it with Matt. I had started casually dating Dennis who has since influenced me to be better, and me and Lauren were getting closer than ever. It was 3 days of music, camping, nature, and friendship. (Also alcohol, drugs and sex, but not hard ones) I wouldn't give this as advice, but the first night went so well and I was having such an epic time I decided to drop 2 hits of LSD. This could have gone horribly, but it didn't, except for me getting lost in the woods ha. I looked at my life, and realized I could have all this love if I let go of the drugs. I came down with Dennis's hand in mine, staring at the fire in a very spiritual way, watching the flames swirl internally and making beautiful shapes... I realized life is what you make it and I was wasting it, and that I was stronger than this. That festival was the most beautiful, life changing event I have ever experienced. The 2nd day, I woke up next to Dennis and found I had lost my tiny crumb of Suboxone I had left. But I didn't need it. I was fine.

until I got back, of course. I did use a bit before my appointment, on my 21st birthday. But, December 1st I walked in there and WANTED to change. And, for the most part, I have been sober from oxycodone since. I took 5 classes last spring and did well. Dennis and I aren't official, we both aren't ready, but he's made me happier than any man could right now. Lauren has been the best friend I could ask for, supportive and understanding. I told both of them right after I went to my doctor, and they weren't judgmental, just supportive.

I was put on 16mg of Suboxone, but never took that much, I started around 12mg really, then moved down to 8mg pretty quickly, ahead of my doctors time. However, on the last visit about 2 weeks ago, I told him I want to end this and I feel ready. I had been on 4mg most days before this, sometimes 8mg if I felt extra crappy. Since my last visit however, I have been on 4mg/2mg every other day. This is the first time I've started to feel those damn chills and sweats again, but it comes randomly. My next step, the one I'm starting over the next 10 days or so, is 2mg each day. I'm a little nervous... and that's why I've joined this forum. I'm sorry this is long, I cut down a lot of it, but even if you don't read it, it really helped me to write it all out.

Congratulations to those of you who have also gotten your life back with Suboxone.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2010 1:54 pm 
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Hi kissthesky and welcome to the forum. That's quite a story! I enjoyed reading it and I have to say I'm so sorry to hear you went through so many bad times/events - things I can identify with. I'm glad to hear suboxone has helped you. I can't quite grasp the timeline, but how long have you been on sub? Have you considered a longer, slower taper? From what I've read the lower and slower you go the less acute withdrawals you'll experience. Perhaps if you take your time you won't feel so sick? Just a thought. Going off sub isn't an easy thing, but from what I understand having the right taper plan can make a huge difference.

You didn't say, but have you started or been in therapy at all? Many of us - myself included - have found it of immense value in learning how to live life without drugs. Plus after what you've been through it's probably not a bad idea. Just my opinion though, as I know how much it helped me to get past some traumatic events in my past.

Again, welcome to the site and I hope you find as much support in your recovery as I have. Good to have you with us.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:45 pm 
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Thank you hatmaker for your kind words & advice, and reading my ridiculously long story. This summer has been.. hell in a few words. I am now down to .5 ish of suboxone or less, and I feel like HELL every morning when I wake up. I am planning on cutting it off this weekend. I have done an extremely slow taper, the only thing holding me back is my fear of withdrawals. I also have slipped up a few times, but I really want a job they'll drug test me for, and I do not want sub in my system or for them to know I've been a junkie. I feel like a coward... I am seeing a therapist who has helped somewhat, but besides that my support from friends has been a lot shakier than before. I think I'll try posting here again while I'm detoxing.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 7:50 am 
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kissthesky,

Thanks for sharing your story and welcome to the forum. You have done great getting down to .5mg. I am going to make a few suggestions to you and hope you don't mind. From being on this forum so long, and from having jumped off suboxone myself, I think you might do better if you continue your taper. Drug testing for work will not show suboxone most of the time. I drug tested for my job on suboxone and it was fine. Most employers don't know about it and don't want to pay that much for a test. Suboxone is not the drug they are concerned about. So go out and get your dream job. You will likely be fine.

Most of the people who have had the least problems, been truly successful, and remained off the opiates long term, have done a much slower taper including a liquid taper. Even .5mg is extremely powerful and you are likely to experience withdrawal very similar to jumping off 4mg or 8mg per day. It is kind of like the withdrawal from vicodin is the same as that of oxycontin. The body reacts the same even though one drug is more potent than the other. Your body only knows it needs it. I suggest inspecting the "stopping suboxone" section of this site with a fine tooth comb before you jump and make an informed decision as to what is best for you.

Should you continue to choose to jump now, please consider lining up some comfort meds such as a small dose of ativan, ambien, trazadone, clonidine, immodium ad, maybe an antidepressant, and something for restless leg syndrome. You will need it. Keep setting regular appointments with the suboxone doctor in case you need to go back on a small dose. Please also keep in mind it is often recommended that people in their 20's remain on suboxone longer because of their age and low success rates of stopping suboxone. Please expect to experience post acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS) for a while. By a while I mean at least 3 months unless you are regularly exercising and eating healthy, etc. In this case it could be shorter but jumping from .5 is still a lot.

I wish you all the success in the world and hope you will stick around this site so people can help you through this process. You haven't received a whole lot of response to your intro, but that isn't uncommon. I suspect in the general forum people will answer any questions you have and support you in much larger numbers. There is a lot of knowledge and experience on this site and people can help you tremendously.

Good luck!
Cherie

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 01, 2010 11:19 pm 
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kissthesky...

after reading your post i honestly teared up...

i was using 210 mg of oc a day, 30s, 80s, whatever i could get my hands on...i tried quiting so many times before, always using my friends suboxone he would sell me, and i would smoke and drink...

finally i had enough and told my parents...i went to outpatient and have been sober for 309 days...

subxone changed my life..i graduated once but am back in school...i just switched to the new film today...see how that goes

but i am so happy to hear things are going well for you

keep strong!!


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 6:50 pm 
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kissthesky..

Thanks so much for sharing your story! We all can relate here and I am so glad you started by being so open. I was addicted to heroin for a year and been on suboxone almost a year. I have not even begun to think about getting off suboxone! I wish you luck in your taper and hope you keep us updated!

Jessica

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