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PostPosted: Sat Jun 24, 2017 8:56 pm 
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I admit I don't have a lot of experience on internet forums except for one I've been on for years regarding a hobby of mine. At least there questions are clearly cut and dry. Mostly questions and replies about my hobby. But this forum is proving to be a little different. I don't have very much knowledge about "trolls" or people that are being manipulative on purpose to cause drama or whatever. And I'm having a hard time distinguishing real pleas for help and those meant to disrupt the flow of information. Is it an agenda against buprenorphine treatment? Is that it?

Maybe I'm more gullible than I thought I was. I don't understand why anyone would go out of their way and take their time to purposefully mislead others just to cause problems... I just don't get it. Is this a common issue with "recovery" sites? The last time I joined a forum, I was chased off because I spoke out against Kratom. I couldn't believe the attacks I got for sharing my horrible experience. Why are people so mean? I thought I was doing a service by being honest and yet some people actually threatened me physically.

I've had a really rough life, one filled with deep and dark depression and anxiety. I'm not saying my life is any worse than anybody else's but it's been really hard on me. One way of coping is trying to help people or reach out to those that 'sound' like they're on the edge. It helps me feel better about myself. But recently, it's been backfiring on me and I don't understand why. One of my friends has a teenager that has been getting into drugs and I've tried to speak up about the possible dangers and consequences. I was doing it because I cared and don't want anything to happen to her. Now she barely talks to me anymore and has been really mean to me on Facebook because of it.

And now here, I've ran into my first little snag. There has been someone posting about feelings of wanting to hurt themselves. For days now I've been suffering from insomnia because of it. I haven't been able to sleep until late this morning, I finally crashed out for a few hours. It's brought back memories of a friend that I lost to suicide. I saw the signs and waited too long to say something. My God, it's been haunting me for years, and all of those unresolved emotions are rushing back. I haven't wanted to deal with them and now that I'm sober, I'm finding it more raw that ever and I just want it to go away... please I just want it to go away. The guilt, the pain, the regret, all of it. I'm so sorry that I didn't say something in time. If I could do it over again I would do it differently, I swear.

I have read quite a few posts about people feeling cold, numb or just no emotion whatsoever on Subs. I wish it was that way for me... because I'm feeling the weight of the world right now. It's not normal for me to cry for hours on end and not know why I'm crying, and yet I can't stop. I 'feel' everything!! And every hour I break out into a hot flash were I feel like there is a furnace burning inside of me, and I sweat everywhere profusely for several minutes. Then afterwards, I feel the slightest breeze on my skin and I feel cold for a little bit before going back to normal. I know it's not good for me but I've been avoiding social activities because of the sweating and the emotions. I can't watch television because it's so depressing. The whole world seems to be writhing in pain.

All of those years wasted on pills is catching up with me. I'm 42 and I so desperately wanted a family... a wife and kids, the whole package. But all I have to show for it is loneliness, a dwindling list of friends and a biological clock that is laughing in my face. I'm a caregiver to an elderly parent that has stopped wanting to fight against all of his health problems. We've become very enmeshed over the years and I feel like I'm the only one left fighting for life in this household. And I'm just completely exhausted with it all. It's tough enough just trying to put my life back together, but I feel responsible for my parent's health and happiness. It feels soooo heavy!!

All through my life I've battled being overweight. I lost a 100 pounds in the last few years and was feeling pretty good about that. Then after I admitted myself into treatment, my appetite has come roaring back like never before. I stepped on the scale the other day and I've gained 31 pounds since 4/10/17... 31 pounds just like that. I've been craving cookies and ice cream like you wouldn't believe and I just feel like I can't stop. I've gone back to hiding cookies and candy bars again, like I was a kid again. I'm 42 years old and yet I'm hiding food so that nobody will know how much I'm eating!! I fought so hard to lose all that weight and it came back so quickly and easily... it's not fair!! I know I don't have anyone to blame but myself, but it just doesn't feel fair.

I wish I could go back onto my Xanax. I've been dealing with so much anxiety recently but I don't have any of me medicine to take. I was prescribed Xanax for about 8 years and was slowly tapering off of it when I went into treatment. I had worked down to 2MG's of Valium a day because it's longer acting than Xanax. It was going well and then they just stopped it. Told me I had to make a choice, as if I actually had a choice. They stopped my Valium, the pain pills, my Tizanidine for muscle spasms, all of it and now I'm having to learn how to live life without them... and it's a lot harder than I thought it would be. I feel every emotion to the extreme. I really wish I could just be "numb" like so many people have talked about it. Because it just feels like too much right now.

Well, if you've read this far, thank you. I try to be happy and positive as much as I can, especially when there are those around me that are hurting. But I've realized that I have to start taking better care of myself. I'm going to therapy, I'm doing the SMART recovery meetings, going to my church's outreach program for addicts and those with depression. I'm doing all the work. It just feels like so much. A part of me wishes I could take some Oxy or Morphine... I know it's bad but I want to feel that relief again. The combination was always so soothing and I know that after only 20 minutes after swallowing the pills, everything would be alright again.

Of course that's just a LIE I tell myself. The truth is that living for pills was a nightmare that nearly took my life. I won't go back, ever. I just won't. Not after all of this struggling, and suffering, and fighting. It's just not who I am anymore. Maybe I am grieving that old life. Even though it was bad for me, I did get a certain amount of comfort from it. I know it sounds kind of corny, but I almost feel like having a funeral for my past addicted life. I need to say goodbye to it forever, one last time. I don't know what I'm saying. I'm just really tired and worn out. And sometimes the things that people post here are 'triggers' for my anxiety. I know I can push through it.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 12:02 am 
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We are not that kind of site where you'd get bashed or threatened for speaking your mind. Would it be too much to ask the name of the site regarding the Kratom? Just curious, no need to divulge if you don't want to.

Your input here has been very much appreciated. Answering the new members questions with good answers helps us mods to step back and let the members do the posting. Most new people prefer to hear from another member, not a moderator. Some view us as management or authority types and instantly have a resentment. Not many, just enough to get us to post less and hope the membership responds back instead. We get it. No addict likes authority even though we are far from that.

We will always have Suboxone bashers here. Always have and always will. We mods developed a thick skin fairly quickly and try to respond kindly. If they are indeed trolls then they get banned. But we don't back down from a discussion about the alleged negative effects of Suboxone. We will defend it fiercely so the right information about it is in plain site. People are entitled to their opinion but we don't allow the rules to be broken.

Please try not to be offended by some offhand remarks. We all have been through it.

Glad to have you as a part of our forum!

rule

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 12:43 pm 
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I was never 'educated' on online forums either, it can be a culture shock if u aren't prepared. I was a member of a NA site years ago. I actually started moderating some of the meetings. There would be trolls come in and antagonize us about drugs. I remember once they pretty much shunned a person who was on buprenorphine. I remember thinking to myself, damn I wish I had some type of recovery medication that would help my cravings I'm having. I relapsed and didn't gain bk recovery until years later. Then after I'd been on suboxone for a yr or so I found this place just by googling a question I had about buprenorphine.

Once I started here, I really started understanding trolls and their rude manipulation, ppl who felt bupe was cheating or they just plain had issues with others I guess. It's not all the time but those ppl are out there. It makes sense, think of all the ppl out there who's on the internet, ur going to have craziness at times. The internet links us with some outlandish characters. But what I have kinda figured out is how to ignore them. I've also developed a type of sixth sense with spotting things that seem 'odd or far fetched'. U just have to not take things so personally sometimes. I had someone insult my grammar a few months ago. I guess because I use 'u ur urself bk' stuff like that they think I'm illiterate lol. I just try to let it go in one ear out the other. Some ppl have nothing better to do than start drama or pretend to be someone they aren't.

Thank u for explaining urself and ur history. My mother just got diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. I knew she was in pain all the time and I had noticed her fingers were starting to look curved inward. I know when time passes she'll be unable to completely take care of herself and I will be the child that steps up and takes care of her. So it's great of u to do that for ur parent.

Oh and about that numb on suboxone stuff..... I've never felt numb on bupe. It's hard for me to believe others do but maybe it's different for different ppl. I have full on emotions all the time, just ask my family and fiancé.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 1:55 pm 
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Hey OM...

I'm very glad to hear you talk about yourself so that we can get to know you better. I'm personally sorry
for not getting your situation. And I'm very sincerely sorry that I added to your pain.

It's good not to be cynical about people and to be trusting of their motives. And for the most part that should serve you well. Trolls are rare, fortunately.

One thing that's helpful is to realize that you don't have to take things too personally. Nobody knows who you are, beyond your Internet name. No one can harm you physically, unless you reveal your real identity. I'm sure you'd never do that.

Recovery forums are pretty much like all other forums. Most people are here to be helpful to others as well as to get help for themselves. Most of us belong to both groups at various times, with an emphasis more on getting help in the beginning.

Subs do not numb a person out. If anything, they free you up to feel your feelings by allowing you to live an almost completely normal life. I was numb when I was addicted to my DOC. Subs have brought me....and I'm certain virtually all of us...back to life.

Very grateful for that..

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 5:56 pm 
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Rule - So right before I decided to get into treatment I spent a little time over at http://www.addictionrecoveryguide.org/message_board/ I was posting in the "Other Drugs" section after an older gentleman was trying to convince a teenager to try Kratom to help with withdrawal pains. I insisted that she didn't and I let him know that I thought it was inappropriate to advise a minor to use drugs of any kind, let alone a substance that is highly unregulated and potentially dangerous. He took it as a challenge and threatened to kick my a#$ if he ever saw me. The sick thing is, this guy had made a previous post in the "Other Addictions" thread in which he talked about being addicted to pornography... with "young people". He disgusted me and made me angry so I let him know it. He was banned and they offered me an apology. I accepted but my time there was done at that point. It just wasn't a good fit.

Jenn - Really until that other forum and then here, I had never even come across what a "troll" was. I've had to get used to a lot of abbreviations that mean all sort of things, and put up with people being jerks just for the sake of being jerks. I simply don't understand why. But there was a line in one of the Batman movies, I think it was the Dark Knight. It was about the Joker portrayed by Heath Ledger. "There are some people who just like to watch the world burn"... or something to that effect. It makes sense given some of my online experiences. It's so sad. These people could be getting involved in any number of positive, fulfilling activities. But to waste away and cause needless harm on a site where people are desperate for help, I just can't wrap my brain around it. It's not like I'm some old fart either. I'm pretty tech savvy, just not with forums I guess.

Godfrey - In this particular instance, something very traumatic was triggered for me and I was having problems coping with it. You made a comment based on a misunderstanding, but that's all it was. I appreciate your comments and I'm not the kind to hold a grudge. From this point moving forward, it never happened, and if it did, it's in the past. I'm cool with that and I hope you will be, too. I sincerely appreciate your private message, thank you my friend. :D

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 11:56 pm 
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OpenMind wrote:
I admit I don't have a lot of experience on internet forums except for one I've been on for years regarding a hobby of mine. At least there questions are clearly cut and dry. Mostly questions and replies about my hobby. But this forum is proving to be a little different. I don't have very much knowledge about "trolls" or people that are being manipulative on purpose to cause drama or whatever. And I'm having a hard time distinguishing real pleas for help and those meant to disrupt the flow of information. Is it an agenda against buprenorphine treatment? Is that it?

Maybe I'm more gullible than I thought I was. I don't understand why anyone would go out of their way and take their time to purposefully mislead others just to cause problems... I just don't get it. Is this a common issue with "recovery" sites? The last time I joined a forum, I was chased off because I spoke out against Kratom. I couldn't believe the attacks I got for sharing my horrible experience. Why are people so mean? I thought I was doing a service by being honest and yet some people actually threatened me physically.

I've had a really rough life, one filled with deep and dark depression and anxiety. I'm not saying my life is any worse than anybody else's but it's been really hard on me. One way of coping is trying to help people or reach out to those that 'sound' like they're on the edge. It helps me feel better about myself. But recently, it's been backfiring on me and I don't understand why. One of my friends has a teenager that has been getting into drugs and I've tried to speak up about the possible dangers and consequences. I was doing it because I cared and don't want anything to happen to her. Now she barely talks to me anymore and has been really mean to me on Facebook because of it.

And now here, I've ran into my first little snag. There has been someone posting about feelings of wanting to hurt themselves. For days now I've been suffering from insomnia because of it. I haven't been able to sleep until late this morning, I finally crashed out for a few hours. It's brought back memories of a friend that I lost to suicide. I saw the signs and waited too long to say something. My God, it's been haunting me for years, and all of those unresolved emotions are rushing back. I haven't wanted to deal with them and now that I'm sober, I'm finding it more raw that ever and I just want it to go away... please I just want it to go away. The guilt, the pain, the regret, all of it. I'm so sorry that I didn't say something in time. If I could do it over again I would do it differently, I swear.

I have read quite a few posts about people feeling cold, numb or just no emotion whatsoever on Subs. I wish it was that way for me... because I'm feeling the weight of the world right now. It's not normal for me to cry for hours on end and not know why I'm crying, and yet I can't stop. I 'feel' everything!! And every hour I break out into a hot flash were I feel like there is a furnace burning inside of me, and I sweat everywhere profusely for several minutes. Then afterwards, I feel the slightest breeze on my skin and I feel cold for a little bit before going back to normal. I know it's not good for me but I've been avoiding social activities because of the sweating and the emotions. I can't watch television because it's so depressing. The whole world seems to be writhing in pain.

All of those years wasted on pills is catching up with me. I'm 42 and I so desperately wanted a family... a wife and kids, the whole package. But all I have to show for it is loneliness, a dwindling list of friends and a biological clock that is laughing in my face. I'm a caregiver to an elderly parent that has stopped wanting to fight against all of his health problems. We've become very enmeshed over the years and I feel like I'm the only one left fighting for life in this household. And I'm just completely exhausted with it all. It's tough enough just trying to put my life back together, but I feel responsible for my parent's health and happiness. It feels soooo heavy!!

All through my life I've battled being overweight. I lost a 100 pounds in the last few years and was feeling pretty good about that. Then after I admitted myself into treatment, my appetite has come roaring back like never before. I stepped on the scale the other day and I've gained 31 pounds since 4/10/17... 31 pounds just like that. I've been craving cookies and ice cream like you wouldn't believe and I just feel like I can't stop. I've gone back to hiding cookies and candy bars again, like I was a kid again. I'm 42 years old and yet I'm hiding food so that nobody will know how much I'm eating!! I fought so hard to lose all that weight and it came back so quickly and easily... it's not fair!! I know I don't have anyone to blame but myself, but it just doesn't feel fair.

I wish I could go back onto my Xanax. I've been dealing with so much anxiety recently but I don't have any of me medicine to take. I was prescribed Xanax for about 8 years and was slowly tapering off of it when I went into treatment. I had worked down to 2MG's of Valium a day because it's longer acting than Xanax. It was going well and then they just stopped it. Told me I had to make a choice, as if I actually had a choice. They stopped my Valium, the pain pills, my Tizanidine for muscle spasms, all of it and now I'm having to learn how to live life without them... and it's a lot harder than I thought it would be. I feel every emotion to the extreme. I really wish I could just be "numb" like so many people have talked about it. Because it just feels like too much right now.

Well, if you've read this far, thank you. I try to be happy and positive as much as I can, especially when there are those around me that are hurting. But I've realized that I have to start taking better care of myself. I'm going to therapy, I'm doing the SMART recovery meetings, going to my church's outreach program for addicts and those with depression. I'm doing all the work. It just feels like so much. A part of me wishes I could take some Oxy or Morphine... I know it's bad but I want to feel that relief again. The combination was always so soothing and I know that after only 20 minutes after swallowing the pills, everything would be alright again.

Of course that's just a LIE I tell myself. The truth is that living for pills was a nightmare that nearly took my life. I won't go back, ever. I just won't. Not after all of this struggling, and suffering, and fighting. It's just not who I am anymore. Maybe I am grieving that old life. Even though it was bad for me, I did get a certain amount of comfort from it. I know it sounds kind of corny, but I almost feel like having a funeral for my past addicted life. I need to say goodbye to it forever, one last time. I don't know what I'm saying. I'm just really tired and worn out. And sometimes the things that people post here are 'triggers' for my anxiety. I know I can push through it.


Sorry. This posted before I actually replied, so Openmind, just know that I'm working on a reply to you right now.

So, the first thing I want to say is that I haven't read any of the other replies, just your original post. So if I say something that repeats another poster, it's because I'm responding only to your post without reading other replies.

I've been traveling (by car) almost nonstop since Wednesday, aside from stopping less than 24 hours at a time at a few friends houses. So no down time. I feel like I've let the forum fend for itself while it's being manipulated by someone with less than awesome intentions.

This says nothing negative about any of the other moderators, but I have more experience with trolls than the other mods. This is only because I have been here longer than most in mostly a pretty active role, most of the time. And because I've rubbed at least a couple of people the wrong way, so I've been targeted by more than one troll. Because of the experience I am decent at figuring out who is trolling and who is not. JennJenn also has incredible instincts about who is sincere and who is not. I hope that she is as appreciated here as she should be. I'll be making a post soon about my own depression and bad thoughts that caused me to leave the forum recently for a couple of months. Jenn kept this forum going in my absence answering posts and generally holding down the fort. More on that in another post coming soon.

OM, it is not your fault that you have been emotionally affected by someone who came here to manipulate members of this forum. Coming here with an open heart is admirable and shows a strength of character in you that no troll could ever have. I am sorry that I haven't been around in the last few days to offer more protection and mitigation. I want to share a few thoughts about trolls that I have learned in the past 5 years.

The reason people come trolling here, most of the time, is because they have a grudge against buprenorphine or MAT (Medication Assisted Treatment). They could be a person in treatment who is against MAT because they believe that abstinence is the only true recovery. Some are probably in the treatment industry who wish to discredit MAT because they are part of a program that is heavily 12 step oriented, which is against MAT. They might be the relative of someone for whom buprenorphine was not a good fit. Maybe a relative who failed at buprenorphine based treatment, or someone who wanted buprenorphine to be a complete enough miracle that they did not have to put any effort into their recovery. The possibilities are fairly infinite.

Another component of a troll is immaturity or an inability to interact normally with others. Trolls are often bored. They enjoy manipulating people and are sometimes even psychopathic or sociopathic. They don't care about the feelings of others for one or more of several reasons: immaturity, an inability to empathize, a personality disorder, enjoyment of drama and troublemaking, etc.

There are some typical signs of trolls: being argumentative, mischaracterizing buprenorphine or outright telling "tall tales", immediate hostility toward moderators, an inability to have an adult discussion. Another thing I look for is several different threads started by a new poster. If they are blatant, they will start criticizing the medication right away. They will focus on side effects that they allegedly suffer from. They will use the word "zombie", say they are emotionless on suboxone, or talk about how buprenorphine gets them "high". When confronted with actual facts and evidence they will quickly change the subject. They may say they are interested in one subject, say strabismus of the eye, but when the conversation is furthered or their thoughts are refuted with evidence, they will change the subject or complain of being bullied for having an opinion.

Let me talk a bit about the subject of suicide claims. First of all, we have all heard that when we hear that someone is suicidal, we should believe the person and try to be supportive. Certain professionals are required to report any such claims and provide the suicidal person with resources. Let me remind all the members of something. None of the moderators or members are purporting to be professionals. Even those who are professionals in some kind of mental health capacity are not equipped to provide mental health support in the setting of this forum. The best we can really do is write: Call the suicide hotline at 1-800-273-8255. This forum is anonymous. We are not set up to provide services to those who may be considering suicide. And someone who is suicidal is beyond our reach and abilities.

Another reason that we can't take suicide threats to heart or get involved in helping anyone who could be suicidal is because trolls will often use suicide threats to manipulate good-hearted folks on the forum. It is a useful tool for trolls. These people want to suck regular members into drama. They will use a suicide threat to deflect, to make anyone arguing with them feel bad, to stop mods and other members from confronting them, and to draw sympathy. Saying "I've had suicidal thoughts" is like a forum "get out of jail free" card.

When someone complains of suicidal thoughts, but has seven threads going on about suboxone making them high, go cross-eyed, burp excessively, joint pain, etc., I don't believe them. To me, that's just one more sign of a troll. We had a poster claim to have suicidal thoughts during a long post about why suboxone is terrible. Some of our members thought the egregious parts of that post shouldn't be addressed because we needed to show our support to the poster. The fear was that the OP would see a critical post and be more likely to proceed with a suicide attempt. I kept tabs on the OP and he didn't sign back into the forum for over a week and then wrote other argumentative posts.

Is there anything wrong with taking seriously a poster who mentions suicide? Absolutely not! I have reminded posters before that they are valued and loved and that they would be missed terribly if they made a choice to harm themselves. I have a heart too! It's probably a bit more jaded than some others, but I make an effort when I find a person who seems truly despondent. I also have to acknowledge that some sick trolls use the subject to manipulate others.

What I am sorry for is leaving you and other members who have honest, open hearts hanging when it comes to offering some guidance about the poster who recently mentioned suicidal thoughts. I just let it go when I am sure that the poster concerned is a manipulative troll. I should have weighed in. Members and other mods are certainly not required to listen to me or believe that I am correct. And I'm not omniscient. I just want to mention a few experiences I've had here as mod.

There is one troll that comes here and starts spewing names and other filth at me if I respond to his post. There was one who tried to ban me from posting on his thread. There was one who posted that he was suicidal, and then weeks later came back allegedly as the mother of that poster and told us that her son committed suicide. Never happened!!!

Then there was the woman (I think) that was a seemingly normal member for a long time. But one of the mods at the time got pregnant. It was a happy coincidence that the member also became pregnant! However, she was pretty vague about some pregnancy details. The mod that was pregnant figured out that the member was copying many details of her own life. We eventually set up a bit of a sting and caught her in a lie. She was banned. A couple of months latest a new member started posting prolifically The guy was a retired baseball player. Using some IP address information I figured out that "ballplayer" was actually the same poster who had pretended she was pregnant!! I was floored! I hadn't pegged her for a troll and yet she pulled the wool over all of our eyes. She had been a member of the forum for months and months and gave advice to many people, but we ended up not being able to believe a word she said. I don't even think she was a troll with bad intentions, just a lonely, lost soul. But she ended up hurting a lot of people and making all of us doubt ourselves. It was an ugly lesson to learn.

Openmind, I encourage you to keep your heart open as well as your mind. The vast majority of our posters are truly here for fellowship, information, and problem solving. And part of the moderators' job is to weed out trolls as best we can. You shouldn't have to feel that you're on your own in that process.

I'm so tired right now that I'm falling asleep writing this. So I will respond again soon. There are other things I want to say to you. :)

Amy

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 26, 2017 4:14 am 
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Amy, you're proving to be one incredible woman!! Thank you from the bottom of my heart for that lengthy reply to my post. I know that took a lot of time and concentration. I also think it was healthy for the forum as a whole to get a little insight into what it's like to be a moderator here. I had no idea this "troll" thing existed until recently. Now that I've experienced it first hand, hopefully I'll be more on guard next time and protect myself a little better.

I think it's obvious by now that I tend to live with my emotions on my sleeve. And while that makes me a great empathetic individual, it has led to a few instances of heartache on my part. Despite everything I've been through, I always want to believe that most of us are good at heart, and I try to show people the kindness and respect that I would want to receive.

I'm beginning to see just what an amazing service you and the other mods are doing here. It's got to take time, patience, energy, devotion, motivation and even self-discipline to do the work you're doing. And all because you really want to help. I know you don't get a penny for it and you certainly don't get enough thanks. Well, I want you to know that I see it. I respect your character, your ideas, your writing, your willingness to be concerned about my welfare on this forum... I see it all. And I thank you for it.

I've been suffering from insomnia for days, but I've let out a lot of emotion today, and I feel relieved after reading your comments. You've put me at ease because I know you and the others here "got my back". I think I'm ready to sleep for a bit. Good night for now. - OM

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 26, 2017 8:22 am 
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I was fooled by ballpalyer after the fact, I think he/she came bk as fisher or something. I believed everything she said until Amy told me. I felt so stupid. I guess I got my feel early on from one of the forums best trolls lol. But that one wasn't mean, just lied. So there's all kinds.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 26, 2017 10:53 am 
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We all felt stupid! Yes, that poster came back several times in different forms. To be honest, she could be here as a completely different poster today and we would have no way of knowing for sure. There are some people who are banned and they come back as a different member. Sometimes we can tell right away, but other times it's more difficult. Still, there are members of the forum that I trust completely without being able to verify who they are.

By the way, when we chose a new moderator, that person has to give certain pieces of information that can be verified. While we don't usually attempt to verify anything, we could if we felt that something is off.

One tool that the mods here used to have is that we could often pinpoint the location of a poster through their IP address. So if there were new member after new member from Kansas City who displayed many of the same trollish characteristics, we would just ban them right away without waiting around for them to start trouble.

We no longer have that tool, so mostly we are making these decisions via instinct and evidence of trollish behavior. Everyone gets a fair shake when they come here. We give folks the benefit of the doubt. Mostly it works.

OM, I will get back to you later today and tailor a post to you, specifically.

Amy

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 26, 2017 12:21 pm 
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And it makes things even more confusing when a troll is nice! I know it's hard to believe that a troll can be nice because we all usually have this image in our head that a troll is just a mean trouble maker. That's not always the case, u have one every now and then that just lies and isn't truthful about recovery or even addiction at all. What the person is getting out of that, I have no idea, but it's mind games.

U also have ppl that'll come in from another website that's similar to ours. They'll possibly try to provoke ppl into things, again who knows why. Me and Amy can go on and on lol about trolls. I honestly do think we have a sixth sense type of thing at spotting them. Well..... or we're just overly suspicious :)

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 26, 2017 3:29 pm 
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Amy-Work In Progress wrote:
OM, I will get back to you later today and tailor a post to you, specifically.


Amy, you've been wonderful. You don't owe me anything, and I hope you don't feel responsible for me getting caught up a little... that's totally on me. I've reread your above replies a few times and I get the sense that you're feeling regret about how things went down. I'm a big boy, it was an important life lesson for me to learn. But to be honest, my online behavior is just an extension of my real world personality.

I'm involved in outreach occasionally, and it's not uncommon for me to try to help people that end up using me in one way or another. I'm not saying that happened here, in this instance I felt triggered because of a traumatic experience that I never worked through or tried to resolve. It was just under the surface this whole time and I had no idea about it's hold on me until I was right in the middle of it. That's my bad.

One thing I wasn't prepared for was all of the regret I'd feel after getting sober. I mean, I knew I had wasted a big chunk of my life but the weight of it has been finally sinking in. Those are years I will never get back, no matter how hard I try from here on out. Another big one has been my self respect. It's been missing. I'm starting to get some of it back now that I'm going to therapy, SMART recovery meetings, and a special group at church for those dealing with depression & anxiety, grief, addictions, ect. I'm doing the hard work and trying to give myself the credit for that.

But in the process, I'm seeing just how many mistakes I've made for the sake of getting high, and it really hurts. Not having any substance to turn to for comfort means it's all on me. It hasn't been like that since before I even started. And that goes back to high school. I'm 42 years-old. That's a lot of regrets. That's why I just decided to start typing. Everyone's been really cool and I appreciate the replies. But I'm kind of typing just to get it out even if nobody is reading it. I know I've mentioned before, maybe in a private message, that I have quite a bit of time on my hands right now. So it's been helpful to come here and just read for hours on end. It helps me to not feel so alone. Of course, it's also possible that I've been pushing a little too hard. And maybe I should take a break now and then. Keep things in balance, you know?

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 22, 2017 4:10 pm 
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OpenMind wrote:
I admit I don't have a lot of experience on internet forums except for one I've been on for years regarding a hobby of mine. At least there questions are clearly cut and dry. Mostly questions and replies about my hobby. But this forum is proving to be a little different. I don't have very much knowledge about "trolls" or people that are being manipulative on purpose to cause drama or whatever. And I'm having a hard time distinguishing real pleas for help and those meant to disrupt the flow of information. Is it an agenda against buprenorphine treatment? Is that it?

Maybe I'm more gullible than I thought I was. I don't understand why anyone would go out of their way and take their time to purposefully mislead others just to cause problems... I just don't get it. Is this a common issue with "recovery" sites? The last time I joined a forum, I was chased off because I spoke out against Kratom. I couldn't believe the attacks I got for sharing my horrible experience. Why are people so mean? I thought I was doing a service by being honest and yet some people actually threatened me physically.

I've had a really rough life, one filled with deep and dark depression and anxiety. I'm not saying my life is any worse than anybody else's but it's been really hard on me. One way of coping is trying to help people or reach out to those that 'sound' like they're on the edge. It helps me feel better about myself. But recently, it's been backfiring on me and I don't understand why. One of my friends has a teenager that has been getting into drugs and I've tried to speak up about the possible dangers and consequences. I was doing it because I cared and don't want anything to happen to her. Now she barely talks to me anymore and has been really mean to me on Facebook because of it.

And now here, I've ran into my first little snag. There has been someone posting about feelings of wanting to hurt themselves. For days now I've been suffering from insomnia because of it. I haven't been able to sleep until late this morning, I finally crashed out for a few hours. It's brought back memories of a friend that I lost to suicide. I saw the signs and waited too long to say something. My God, it's been haunting me for years, and all of those unresolved emotions are rushing back. I haven't wanted to deal with them and now that I'm sober, I'm finding it more raw that ever and I just want it to go away... please I just want it to go away. The guilt, the pain, the regret, all of it. I'm so sorry that I didn't say something in time. If I could do it over again I would do it differently, I swear.

I have read quite a few posts about people feeling cold, numb or just no emotion whatsoever on Subs. I wish it was that way for me... because I'm feeling the weight of the world right now. It's not normal for me to cry for hours on end and not know why I'm crying, and yet I can't stop. I 'feel' everything!! And every hour I break out into a hot flash were I feel like there is a furnace burning inside of me, and I sweat everywhere profusely for several minutes. Then afterwards, I feel the slightest breeze on my skin and I feel cold for a little bit before going back to normal. I know it's not good for me but I've been avoiding social activities because of the sweating and the emotions. I can't watch television because it's so depressing. The whole world seems to be writhing in pain.

All of those years wasted on pills is catching up with me. I'm 42 and I so desperately wanted a family... a wife and kids, the whole package. But all I have to show for it is loneliness, a dwindling list of friends and a biological clock that is laughing in my face. I'm a caregiver to an elderly parent that has stopped wanting to fight against all of his health problems. We've become very enmeshed over the years and I feel like I'm the only one left fighting for life in this household. And I'm just completely exhausted with it all. It's tough enough just trying to put my life back together, but I feel responsible for my parent's health and happiness. It feels soooo heavy!!

All through my life I've battled being overweight. I lost a 100 pounds in the last few years and was feeling pretty good about that. Then after I admitted myself into treatment, my appetite has come roaring back like never before. I stepped on the scale the other day and I've gained 31 pounds since 4/10/17... 31 pounds just like that. I've been craving cookies and ice cream like you wouldn't believe and I just feel like I can't stop. I've gone back to hiding cookies and candy bars again, like I was a kid again. I'm 42 years old and yet I'm hiding food so that nobody will know how much I'm eating!! I fought so hard to lose all that weight and it came back so quickly and easily... it's not fair!! I know I don't have anyone to blame but myself, but it just doesn't feel fair.

I wish I could go back onto my Xanax. I've been dealing with so much anxiety recently but I don't have any of me medicine to take. I was prescribed Xanax for about 8 years and was slowly tapering off of it when I went into treatment. I had worked down to 2MG's of Valium a day because it's longer acting than Xanax. It was going well and then they just stopped it. Told me I had to make a choice, as if I actually had a choice. They stopped my Valium, the pain pills, my Tizanidine for muscle spasms, all of it and now I'm having to learn how to live life without them... and it's a lot harder than I thought it would be. I feel every emotion to the extreme. I really wish I could just be "numb" like so many people have talked about it. Because it just feels like too much right now.

Well, if you've read this far, thank you. I try to be happy and positive as much as I can, especially when there are those around me that are hurting. But I've realized that I have to start taking better care of myself. I'm going to therapy, I'm doing the SMART recovery meetings, going to my church's outreach program for addicts and those with depression. I'm doing all the work. It just feels like so much. A part of me wishes I could take some Oxy or Morphine... I know it's bad but I want to feel that relief again. The combination was always so soothing and I know that after only 20 minutes after swallowing the pills, everything would be alright again.

Of course that's just a LIE I tell myself. The truth is that living for pills was a nightmare that nearly took my life. I won't go back, ever. I just won't. Not after all of this struggling, and suffering, and fighting. It's just not who I am anymore. Maybe I am grieving that old life. Even though it was bad for me, I did get a certain amount of comfort from it. I know it sounds kind of corny, but I almost feel like having a funeral for my past addicted life. I need to say goodbye to it forever, one last time. I don't know what I'm saying. I'm just really tired and worn out. And sometimes the things that people post here are 'triggers' for my anxiety. I know I can push through it.


Dearest OpenMind,
We started together here on the Forum. I feel a special bond because of that. I've read many of your kind, caring & helpful posts to others. I commend you for that. Maybe even a bit jealous that you were able to do that so early in your recovery. I've had to stay in the back ground to work on my own issues. Doing searches & reading reading reading. But you were right there helping others. Now I feel like I can possibly help you. I'm sure going to try because you deserve it!

First off, congratulations on losing 100 lbs.!!! That's an incredible accomplishment. I've struggled with my weight since in High School. In my 40's I joined Weight Watchers and had success, finally. They now had small sweet treats that I could buy and fit into my weight loss strategy. Sweets have always been my weakness. I lost the weight & am now a life time member. Oh, I still struggle with my weight but I learned tools to help me get that weight back off. Especially if I put it on fast (like you have in the last 3 months). If you can substitute some low calorie sweets for candy bars that will help! Plus, you gained it so fast that if you take control now, it should come off just as fast. Hope that helps.

Regarding your friend that you lost to suicide. You must forgive yourself for any perceived feelings of letting them down. I'm sorry, it must have been horrible. But it was not your fault! You must let it go. Grieve again if needed. In time, you will realize that this was not in your hands. You are innocent here. Please be kind to yourself.

Okay, so you're now 42 years old. I'm 58 dear. You can still have that family & friends & a good life. No, a great life! You're still very young. There's time. Give yourself a break on this one too! You've started a new life now & I like that you feel like having a funeral for your old life and grieve it as the loss that it is. You know that those pills are not the answers! Recovery is the answer & you're well on your way.

Many of us find ourselves in the position of taking care of an aging parent. Yours sounds particularly difficult. All I can say is do the best that you can. What more can you do but your best at the time? You should be commended for so patiently devoting yourself to another! Hang in there on this one.

I'm really sorry that not only did you lose your DOC, you lost your other medications too. I have been on Xanax 1 mg x 2 per day for over 10 years prescribed by my Psychiatrist along with Seroquel for Bi Polar II. I'm much more manic and Xanax has been very helpful for me. Luckily my Dr. lets me continue to take them. I'm sorry you can't. But I know it's not an option for you. Though I am sorry that you lost all other meds too. That must be so difficult.

I'm sorry that some trolls or trouble makers have been a problem for you here. I also have no experience with this type of behavior, nor do I understand it. Please just let it go & take it for what it is. Utter nonsense and has no place on our Forum! Our Mods do an amazing job with that type. I'm just sorry you got caught up in something that has hurt you. You did not deserve it!

Well, I've tried to address some of your current issues. I know you would/will do the same for me. You are a valuable person and I hope we can stay on this path together for a better life for ourselves.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 22, 2017 9:29 pm 
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Openmind, I've been meaning to write a post to you about one thing or another since I wrote the one in June! I view your arrival on the forum as a really fortunate thing for us. The only reason that you may have felt like you weren't sure of some posters intentions is that you have an open heart as well as an open mind. You're just a rare person. No rough edges to wear off, no pretenses, no knife in the back. There aren't very many of us who get to this point of being an addict without having gotten somewhat jaded and wary.

Yet, there is a certain vulnerability we can't help but wear as addicts in recovery, especially for those newly in recovery, that responds so well to your open, honest manner. Many of us have reason to hope, finally, after years of feeling hopeless. We now have the occasion to trust when, for so long, we couldn't even trust ourselves. So it feels good to trust someone like you, who has so eloquently spoken about feelings that all of us experience, even if we don't say them out loud. Sometimes it's so hard to lower our guard, but it's easier when someone shows us a good example of doing just that.

I think another way of saying everything I just said is that we appreciate what you bring to the forum and we're glad you're here. :)

I can only imagine that caring for an ailing parent is taxing, especially if they have really stopped trying to get healthier and are rather resigned to life not getting any better. I remember that when my Great Aunt Be was living with my dad after my mom died, he would get really frustrated that she wouldn't do more for herself. Instead, she seemed resigned to lose more and more of her capabilities, which just made her more dependent on my dad. Of course, when my great aunt moved in with my parents, they weren't expecting my mom to suddenly die within 2 months of the new arrangement. In the end, she needed more care that what my dad could be expected to provide, so she went into an assisted living situation. She was happy there. But I remember the time leading up to her move to the facility as being contentious and unhappy. I'm sure you're doing the very best that you can, OM, and that your parent (your dad?) appreciates that.

Dee is absolutely right, though, that you have a lot of time to still have a family! My husband was 43 when our son was born. We had just gotten married the year before. And my husband had a 16 year old son and 18 year old daughter at the time. So I became a Gammy at the tender age of 35!! You never know what might just drop into your life. Seriously.

I admire the fact that you're doing several things to take better care of yourself. Going to SMART meetings is such a great way of learning better behaviors and meeting new friends at the same time. It seems like there are always new people to connect to in those meetings. And I met a lot of people through my church too. Keep taking care of yourself. Right now that's the best thing you can do. Especially since you're needed here on the forum.

A few weeks have past since you wrote the initial post in this thread. I can tell you feel more at home here and settled in. I want you to know how much you're valued here already! It seems that every once in a while we get a couple of awesome folks like you and DeeKay who we can count on to stick around. I sincerely hope you're here for good!

Amy

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:45 am 
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When I logged in to the forum today, I had a heavy heart. I had found out some more information about my friend's daughter and her fiance who passed away earlier this week from an overdose. Well I certainly wasn't expecting to find such heartfelt and compassionate messages waiting for me. But I'm really happy that they were. I'm genuinely moved by both of them. Thank you so much.

I know that it takes a lot of time and energy to write such long replies. I know my messages tend to be quite long too. I just happen to have the time to dedicate to this site right now because I'm home so much taking care of my father. But most of my friends have moved away and the other ones I had to let go of because they remind me of my life in active addiction. It was really hard to do and I know I hurt some people's feelings in the process, something I never like to do.

But I had to ask some of those people where our friendship would be if it weren't for drugs? Would we have ever got together for any other reasons? Any common interests or hobbies? And the answer for the most part was 'no'. I let each one of them know that I was dedicating my life to a new purpose. My personality would stay the same but my actions had to change... forever with no exceptions. I was open to any friend that was willing to put a life of drugs behind them. I found out very quickly that I didn't have many real friends.

But that's alright. The friends I have now are the best ones I've ever had. They are real, and genuine, caring and compassionate, and enjoy being sober together... with me. When I joined this forum I never imagined that I would possibly meet even more people like that. I figured we would talk about our war stories of the druggy years and that would be it. But I have been finding what I've been looking for for a long, long time. Real connections with wonderful human beings that aren't just surface deep. I think there is real potential at making life long friends here, even off the forum like with a couple of you.

We're all walking around in this life carrying so many emotions, thoughts, experiences and memories, some good and some really bad. I know I've been walking around with a lot of unnecessary baggage and I'm ready to deal with it head on so that I can leave it in the past where it belongs. Thank you guys for helping me to find the courage to finally let go of some of that crap. It's not good for me anymore, never was. And thank you for helping me see strength in myself that I didn't know I had.

Loneliness has made me shut down socially over time. And I really like being around people. But I kind of feel like a plant that has been withering away in the sun. I just needed a little water and some care and attention, and now I feel like I'm coming back to life. The way you describe what a difference I make to you is really overwhelming. I don't know how to thank people for bringing me back to life. But I try to by being here. I take a vested interest in each person's thread and try to understand how I can make that person's life better. Even if it's in some small way. I'll continue to support you all the way you're supporting me.

Thank you my friends!! - OM

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 4:22 pm 
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Well, thank God that you're beginning to flourish instead of withering away. I don't mean to be all selfish here, but you've made such an impact on the forum that if you left it would leave a hole! People respond to your kindness. You make them feel more at home. It is evident that you are making a difference here.

I'm sure that a lot of us are used to putting up a front. Maybe, since we have been hurt, and we've all been hurt, it's hard to show our true selves, even on an anonymous forum. We show shades of who we are, but we're often not brave enough to be completely natural. I think it's courageous for anyone to put themselves out there and be willing to show some vulnerability. And it makes other people who have had it rough feel less afraid to open up.

None of us come here without baggage, and being addicts we often have more than most. As a group we are more likely to have mental disorders like bipolar, anxiety, and depression. Some of us have experienced or witnessed various kinds of abuse as children or adults. During our active addiction we have seen some very dark stuff. It stands to reason that we should treat each other with kindness, but that is not always the case. Sometimes our baggage makes us behave like jerks. And that's not including the trolls who are nothing but jerks!

So yes, when someone comes here ready to give and be understanding without asking for anything in return, it's noticeable and appreciated.

So settle in for the long haul! You will always have a place here.

Amy

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:02 pm 
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Love your post Amy! OpenMind has quickly made himself so very valuable to everyone here. I have such an admiration for him. I'm proud that we started at the same time because I got to know him right away. And for that, I'm very thankful...

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2017 1:02 am 
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You are also making a very positive impact here, DeeKay. I'm grateful for all the members here, but you two are a couple of recent bright spots!

Amy

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2017 2:26 am 
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I do kind of feel like we're all beginning to gel together. We're learning each other's subtle nuances and how we cope with stressful situations in our lives. I'd say overall that we're coming together like a team, and I really enjoy being a part of it.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 2:54 pm 
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OpenMind wrote:
I do kind of feel like we're all beginning to gel together. We're learning each other's subtle nuances and how we cope with stressful situations in our lives. I'd say overall that we're coming together like a team, and I really enjoy being a part of it.


Hey there OM! How are you? I hope things are going better for you now. I'm still plugging along doing the same old "smoking way too much" thing. That's one of the side effects for me that is just debilitating! Otherwise I'm pretty happy with my current dosage. I did have a major crave last Friday. I couldn't believe how strong it was. Good thing I didn't have my doc. I finally just went to sleep at like 7:30 PM and the next morning I was fine. It was scary...

Anyways, just checking in to make sure things are okay! :)

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