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PostPosted: Fri Sep 15, 2017 12:29 am 
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My boyfriend has been on 8mg/2mg suboxone film and 2mg xanax a day for 12yrs at least.

I don't know what really got him started. He said it was after a surgery, for pain management. But I had my doubts because in the beginning of our relationship he was hiding it from me. And he would also go to the bathroom for literally 30min, 45min even an hour twice a day. I started thinking, maybe he is doing drugs, shooting... It was the strangest thing for me. So one day after he got out, I went behind him and found the white and blue wrap of the suboxone 8mg/2mg.

I'd never heard of it. Googled it and confronted my boyfriend about it and he thats when he told me the surgery story. But I didn't really believe him. One day, I don't know what started the conversation but he was telling me about "free ball". I ask what it was and he told me: "it's the best high you can ever have in your life. You mix..." I can't remember but I think heroine and something and shoot it I guess. I ask if had done it before or done heroine and he answered no. But the excitement and "intensity" in wihich manner he talked about it was telling me the opposite. I have never shoot needles and doesn't know anything about it. And maybe that's why he thinks I would judge him.

He is from Illinois/Indiana border kinda. From research I've learned that it's the area in the US with the worst heroine epidemic. So many people are heroine or prescription pills addicted so I suspect that he was one or the other at some point. And that's what has led him to suboxone.

We've been together for almost 2 years now. In the beginning it was great friendship and relationship. Started a year ago he has been dealing with very stressful family problems and slowly he started to change. He was the guy that I could argue with even when I was trying. He was patient with me, caring and kind. Now he get angry all the time, to the limit of rage. He argues with everybody everywhere. He is verbally abusive, had selfishness close to narcissistic behavior. He has fits of rage and scared me a few time by acting physically threatening. It's impossible to talk to him because it's never him but the world him wrong. He put is bad behavior on me,because I did something wrong supposedly. He is extremely paranoid.

When I met him he was splitting his film in 2 dosage: 1half am the other afternoon and the 2mg of xanax in the evening. A few months later, im not sure when, he was splitting the film in 4 and taking 4times in the day and his 2mg of xanax. Last, 2months ago, he told he that he start cutting his film in smaller pieces so that he can take a dosage every hour.
I have never done opiads so I couldn't see the signs of the addiction, even if they were fragrant. I started suspecting that he was abusing his medication because of all of those changes. He is literally a different man but every time I have try to talk to him it ends up with, I did something wrong to him and that he is the victim when he is the one victimizing me.

He is the love of my life but I can't help him. I feel so helpless I don't know what to do. He doesn't see a problem. But for me It's so bad the point that I am ready to walk away, for myself and him. Because it's unbearable and emotionally painful to be around him. And I love him to much to be a accomplice and unablure in his road to self destruction I love him too much. I can't and will not watch waste his life away. I will rather walk away from him.
What can I do? how can I help him? Can I save this relationship?
this is my last hope


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 16, 2017 11:32 am 
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Hi Beautiful,

I saw the tagline of your post and felt compelled to chime in. I too have almost lost the love of my life--several times, in fact--because of my drug abuse. When faced with that idea, that my wife might leave me, it broke my heart but wasn't enough to stop me keeping secrets and beginning the hard cycles all over again. Even when I got on Suboxone. Initially, I was underdosed and would run out weeks early, only to use our credit cards buying kratom from a local head shop. I was never, nor do I ever see myself becoming what I refer to as a "syndicate" user, meaning the heavier illegal drugs of dubious manufacture and procurement like heroin. Closest I've come is weed, but that's right next door to legal these days, if it isn't already in your corner of the world. I was a Norco man, through and through. Couldn't stop myself even when I knew it was actively killing me. And even on Suboxone, I have had a hard time not running out early, keeping that a dead secret from my wife even though the stakes have grown to add my one year old son to the pot of things I might lose if I can't get my shit together. The last time my wife and I had a confrontation about my abuse, I was again heartbroken it had happened, but I knew that I had blown it. More, I knew that if she didn't want to give me another chance, that she had every right to just walk away. I hoped that she wouldn't and told her so, and in the end, she didn't. As much as you might love this man, right now, he's a blind fool. He's protecting the only thing he is able to truly care about right now which is his access to his drug of choice. As long as you pose a threat to that, you're always going to come in second at best. Leaving him might well offer him the perspective he needs to see the hold and power this all has over him right now, or he might see it as being left alone with his chemical true love and blitz himself into oblivion. I'm not trying to be dark or cynical here, only let you know that you are participating in a competitive relationship right now and will be until he can get his priorities straight. And you deserve better than that. Just as my wife and son deserve a better husband and father, respectively, one who will not draw them into debt trying to preserve his chemical dependence. I'm trying to be that person, trying to learn, even in recovery, what role my medication plays in my continued well being other than a less deadly way of feeling good. I wish you all the best in this, whatever decision you might make. But if the relationship has gone abusive and you wonder whether or not you should get out, I'd ask you one question: If you woke up one night and discovered your house was on fire, would you try to put out the blaze with your kitchen faucet or get the hell out? Not all houses burn to the ground.

Bunsonbyrner


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 16, 2017 10:53 pm 
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bunsonbyrner wrote:
Hi Beautiful,

I saw the tagline of your post and felt compelled to chime in. I too have almost lost the love of my life--several times, in fact--because of my drug abuse. When faced with that idea, that my wife might leave me, it broke my heart but wasn't enough to stop me keeping secrets and beginning the hard cycles all over again. Even when I got on Suboxone. Initially, I was underdosed and would run out weeks early, only to use our credit cards buying kratom from a local head shop. I was never, nor do I ever see myself becoming what I refer to as a "syndicate" user, meaning the heavier illegal drugs of dubious manufacture and procurement like heroin. Closest I've come is weed, but that's right next door to legal these days, if it isn't already in your corner of the world. I was a Norco man, through and through. Couldn't stop myself even when I knew it was actively killing me. And even on Suboxone, I have had a hard time not running out early, keeping that a dead secret from my wife even though the stakes have grown to add my one year old son to the pot of things I might lose if I can't get my shit together. The last time my wife and I had a confrontation about my abuse, I was again heartbroken it had happened, but I knew that I had blown it. More, I knew that if she didn't want to give me another chance, that she had every right to just walk away. I hoped that she wouldn't and told her so, and in the end, she didn't. As much as you might love this man, right now, he's a blind fool. He's protecting the only thing he is able to truly care about right now which is his access to his drug of choice. As long as you pose a threat to that, you're always going to come in second at best. Leaving him might well offer him the perspective he needs to see the hold and power this all has over him right now, or he might see it as being left alone with his chemical true love and blitz himself into oblivion. I'm not trying to be dark or cynical here, only let you know that you are participating in a competitive relationship right now and will be until he can get his priorities straight. And you deserve better than that. Just as my wife and son deserve a better husband and father, respectively, one who will not draw them into debt trying to preserve his chemical dependence. I'm trying to be that person, trying to learn, even in recovery, what role my medication plays in my continued well being other than a less deadly way of feeling good. I wish you all the best in this, whatever decision you might make. But if the relationship has gone abusive and you wonder whether or not you should get out, I'd ask you one question: If you woke up one night and discovered your house was on fire, would you try to put out the blaze with your kitchen faucet or get the hell out? Not all houses burn to the ground.

Bunsonbyrner

Thank you for you input. I'm really struggling with my decision because I told him yesterday that I can't be with him til he gets help. One part of me doesn't want him to feel abandon or that he is alone in this dark hole that is addiction. I've had my battles with addiction(xanax at one time, then coke then extasy) so I know that feeling of dispear. When you feel like your all alone and no ones care. But the other part of me hope that maybe, just maybe loosing me would be enough. Reading what you said about how suboxone was his greatest love opened my mind to a behavior that I didn't recognize til your words. I'm still asking he is an addict? I still doubt because he is so adement. I have bipolar disorder so when I did bring up the subject he would always use "my mood issues" to defend himself and make me believe that it was in my mind!
IS HE AN ADDICT? HOW BAD DO YOU THINK IT IS?
In what other way can I get through him?
I don't wanna quite on him, cause that could have been me.
I love him. A part of me want to save him but my rational self tells me that you can't save someone, they have to do it themselves.
IS HE REALLY ADDICT REALLY BAD?
Can you explain why he does take 8littles pieces during the day?
Is it because he is an addict?
I have seen some physical signs:
Runny nose and stuffy nose all the time for the last year
HE can't smell he said and had 1surgery before on his nose
To pee he would sometimes have to stand there 5mins before he can
He started having veinsros behind his knee
Last time I notice his skin tone was kind yellow(and I know that sign of liver failure) but he just brush it off
He has been complaining about one of his leg that goes numb(which I know is nerve damage)
What about the 2mg xanax he takes? I'm 33 and he is 40 but I'm so ignorant about this "category" of drug.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 12:27 am 
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Blaming your concerns on your bipolar disorder is classic gaslighting, causing you to doubt what you've observed by playing on insecurities. Men do it to women all the time. I'm sure I've done it to my wife and didn't realize it because I'd argue that half the time, it isn't deliberate so much as it is a survival instinct kicking in to protect that inner addict from having to lay down access to that all important drug of choice. Have you seen or read Lord of The Rings? Nerdy, I know, but telling my wife about my Norco addiction and knowing that would be the last dance I'd have with those beauties was a lot like Frodo trying to chuck the ring into Mount Doom. And I didn't have a Gollum with me to accidentally carry out the last act. I realized, when I saw what I had left to lose--my family, my life--that I didn't want Norco as much as any of that. I feel like Suboxone can be a similar dance, if the addictive behavior isn't dealt with. I'm going through that now. And I'm bipolar as well. Opiates were my one stop shop for physical and emotional pain. I would check my eyes every morning when I was on a bender for signs of yellowing, knowing all that Tylenol would eventually toast my liver. I stopped well before 40, but where he's at, it's no joke. I mean no offense by this, but something they tell you in rehabilitation is that behind every addict is a codependent enabler; someone who loves the addict and stands by saying, "it can't be as bad as all that, can it?"

Yes. Yes it can. And it sounds very much like it might be. The best expression of love you could give this man right now is to not stand by idly and watch him die. If he wants to do that, he's going to do it anyway, with or without your help. I'm not saying you should go find someone else, but thinking that you alone can fix this is dangerously naive. If and when he gets better will be his decision, unless he finds himself hospitalized or in police custody, but even then, it's still largely on him to make lasting change. I hope and wish the best for both of you, having been at some level at the same place you now find yourself. I almost lost my wife. Twice. She stuck through it, but she also stuck to her guns, set up strong boundaries with me, recognized that I had molded her into my codependent enabler and together (as well as apart) we flexed our new muscles and broke the chains that were on us at the time. I've since forged new ones--as addicts will--but I know that their weakness is in honesty and open communication. If you don't have either of those things with him right now, take a moment and consider what it is you do have. Consider what he means to you, but also why. Can you love him enough to let him go?


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 1:12 am 
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Additionally, and sorry for going on at such great length and saying such hard things, but to my knowledge and experience--and I'm not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV--but Suboxone alone is not going to cause yellowing of the skin, or liver issues. That is more likely from IV drugs, from any prescription opiate coupled with acetomeniphen (Tylenol), alcohol, or some decidedly deadly cocktail of two or more of the above. The veins you mention would seem to indicate intravenous use of something, which technically could be Suboxone. A reasonable number of addicts will come to Suboxone and for whatever reason, whether it isn't strong enough or just not the feeling they're going for, begin to divert or sell their script to finance their drug of choice. When I run out of my Zubsolv (another brand of Suboxone) I have purchased from such folks. I'm curbing that habit, as it's dangerous for both buyer and seller, not to mention illegal as all hell. But I don't think Suboxone alone is behind the strange behaviors and symptoms you've noticed, if I understand you correctly. When I first got on Zubsolv, it was utterly life changing. A friend describes it as having to take the worst piss of your life. You're holding it and holding it, can think of nothing else until you get that first dose and it's like finally getting to pee. You can think about other things. You can live! That is, until Suboxone becomes the drug of choice and the pharmaceutical idol worship begins all over. I'm not getting religious here, but there is an aspect of worship that I believe exists between addict and Substance. Anyway, just another two cents to add to the pile of pennies I already laid out. I hope with all of my heart that the two of you grow old together, living happy, healthy lives in each other's arms forever more. I really do. But if he can't be there for you in the way he needs to, meaning he's giving as much of himself for you as you are for him, then you are getting short changed on probably the most important transaction of your life.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 8:07 am 
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Hey beautiful.

I can't personally answer all ur questions. I have no idea why he's splitting his doses into 1mg eight times a day. I've not really heard of that before. I can't imagine a doctor advising him to do that either. Does he get his buprenorphine legally (I'm sorry if u said earlier, I can't remember)? The whole dosing eight times a day is weird to me. I have no idea why he'd want to do that unless he's just wanting to keep dosing more often because he's used to taking something throughout the day like he probably did in active addiction. Unless the addict has pain issues, a doctor doesn't recommend dosing more than once a day because it keeps the addict mindset of needing to take something all the time. Does he have pain issues? Even if he does, eight times a day is excessive imo.

If ur man is still using, until he's ready to get bk into recovery himself, giving him an ultimatum won't really work in the long run. It's so much deeper than telling him if he doesn't stop ur going to leave. It doesn't mean he doesn't love u or want to stop, but addiction will win every time until he's ready. Parents in active addiction of course want recovery so they can be a better parent to their children, but that's not always enough when someone is facing addiction. So if a parent can't get clean for their child, u can see what I'm saying about a relationship. I've been through that and it's not as easy as stopping because ur going to possibly lose a significant other. So threatening to leave, imo, may not push him towards recovery IF he's using again. Now if u need to leave for ur own sanity, that's totally understandable and I doubt anyone could blame u, but asking him to choose can turn out the opposite of how u want it to.

I can't really determine if ur guy is using other opiates or substances besides his suboxone. The signs u mentioned don't really convince me he's using again. He may be overly taking his buprenorphine, he may be using again..... I just don't know. Does he do anything for his recovery like counseling? Why not just ask him? Why not sit down and have a huge heart to heart with him? That's what I would do if I were u. U deserve honesty and u deserve answers :)

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 12:16 am 
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The problem your boyfriend is having is with opioid addiction, not with a specific opioid. Speedballs are a combination of heroin and cocaine, so he is probably only using suboxone in between other opioids to prevent him from getting sick. Taking one mg at a time is really not doing anything for him if he is using 8mg a day. In his addict mind he is hoping to get a little rush from each dose of suboxone, but that's not how the medication works.

Buprenorphine, the active ingredient in suboxone, is a tool for addicts who are ready to be in recovery. I was given the choice to take it instead of detoxing fully and going into an inpatient form of treatment. My son was 13 at the time and it would have negatively affected his life if I had been gone for 30, 60, or 90 days. Instead, I went through 60 hours of withdrawal and then was started on suboxone. I went from being a craving addict in withdrawal to feeling like a normal person who was no longer obsessed with pills. But that was because I was ready to be in recovery.

Buprenorphine can be misused by people who are not ready for recovery. The positive is that buprenorphine alone will not cause an addict to overdose. Mixing it with xanax or other CNS depressants can be deadly though.

The mood swings you say your boyfriend is experiencing are what make me think he is still in active addiction. Addicts in recovery on suboxone can experience mood swings here and there, or be irritable, but not like you're describing. Best case scenario he is trying to recover on his own by doing a self-styled program complete with 1mg of suboxone an hour. But that's not the way it should be done. Worst case he is just using the suboxone in between other opioids. If he is IVing other opioids he is probably IVing his suboxone too.

You may very well need to leave him if you want some calm and peace in your life. While he is in active addiction you will never come first. He may love you and want you to come first, but he will need to seek recovery before he can be that loving person.

I'm sorry for your situation.

Amy

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 4:17 pm 
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Hey there,

Sorry to hear of the unfortunate and difficult situation you and he are both in.

When I was on suboxone, I dosed twice daily because a full day's dose made me too tired, and by hour 12 I'd be feeling a little lousy already. My doctor was fully supportive of twice daily.

You said:
"Runny nose and stuffy nose all the time for the last year". That suggests to me that he's snorting something regularly. You can get running/stuffy nose issues during opiate withdrawal, but it would not be ongoing like you mention.

I know from my own experience & that of others that drug sniffers often complain about constant nasal "allergies" or a "cold". It's a lie to others and sometimes ourselves, that it wasn't all a side affect from sniffing drugs. In my experience the longest the nose issues lasted after taking a break from sniffing drugs was a few days or a maybe a week or 2, not a year.

Sometimes 2 people that can be right for each other, just simply are not right for each other at the right time. All the hope and optimism in the world wont change it if that's the case.

I've been in primarily unhealthy, somewhat abusive relationships. People deserve better than that.

I line I like to say:
Whether you're an a-hole on purpose or by accident makes little if any difference.

We all have to be our number one. A great line was shared with me recently:
Like they say on the airplane: even if you have kids, you must administer your own oxygen mask first. We're no good to anybody if we dont take care of ourselves.

You have to put yourself first, whether you stay with him or not.

I've put many others first for way too long, and have paid dearly.


Hang in there and treat yourself well.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 10:12 am 
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Many great comments. I'll just add that I sometimes see patients fall into the pattern of dosing too frequently. I'm convinced, from knowing the pharmacology of buprenorphine, that there aren't significant differences in the chemical effects of buprenorphine whether taken once, twice, or 20 times per day. The people taking it every hour are responding to a placebo effect, and participating in a cycle that started with their drug of choice.

They THINK that each dose of buprenorphine is doing something, when in reality the blood level is above the ceiling threshold the entire time, so each little dose is doing nothing at all. I'll point out to those patients, when I hear what they are doing, that a dose of buprenorphine gets absorbed over 3-4 hours! I also point out that while dosing that way isn't 'physically' harmful, it defeats the whole purpose of being on buprenorphine-- which is to extinguish the cycle of using.

The habit can be hard to break once it is established. But it is a pure 'habit'-- just a behavior, without any real chemical stimulus.

It can be hard to decide how to handle patients who use buprenorphine incorrectly. Some docs, including the ones working in my hometown, kick people out of treatment for practically anything. But I wonder about the ethics of pushing an imperfect patient back to active agonist addiction. Would it be reasonable for an oncologist to refuse chemotherapy to a patient, just because that patient swore over the phone, or smoked pot?

One last comment about the boyfriend... understand that opioid dependence is usually a chronic illness. People have periods of sobriety, and sometimes leave active addiction behind. But the susceptibility is always there, and relapses are not uncommon. Don't expect love to cure addiction, anymore than it can cure any other illness. I'm glad my wife stuck around through the hard times, but frankly I couldn't blame her if she had decided to leave. Those of us with addictions sometimes bring pain to those who love us.


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