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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2015 2:22 pm 
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First I want to say that I am the wife of someone on suboxone. I have never had a drug addition and I am not on any type of drugs so I don't have a lot of knowledge, other than what I Read on internet. Although, my husband's symptoms don't seem to match up with the side effects and need some information desperately. He has been on suboxone almost a year. Is it normal to have the following side effects: sleep all day, mood swings up and down, but mostly down and he is miserable and just nasty, can not function sexually, he can't function at a job, sometimes he gets 1-2 days of this high energy then back to being up in the bedroom and doesn't come out.

Is this normal?


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2015 2:35 pm 
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Jada,

Hopefully, someone with more experience will chime in shortly. I've been on Suboxone for about 9 weeks. I believe it causes me to be a little drowsy during the day, but not so bad that it creates problems (not near the drowsiness I had when I took clonidine for withdrawal symptoms). As for mood/emotions, I find that it has allowed me to return to a more "normal" state. The opioids had "numbed" me so that I had neither ups nor downs. The issues with sexual dysfunction can be a side effect of Suboxone, but there are many other things that could be causing it as well.

Something to consider is that these symptoms may not be side-effects, but just issues that he would be dealing with whether he were taking Suboxone or not. Has he ever been diagnosed with similar things, such as Depression or Bipolar?


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2015 3:09 pm 
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Welcome Jada,
Honestly, he sounds like someone who maybe still useing. On a maintenance dose that matches his tolerance he should e doing much better than what you have said here. This isn'tthe first time ive read something like this. I hope im wroug.
The sex problem has been known as a side effect. Low T in men. He might want to have his levels checked.

These mood swings can e anything as morph has said. But what else is he doing for his recovery? Just sub alone after a short time is fine, but life problems and or useing a drug of choise can ruin the treatment.

Sleeping all day can also be a sign that he could be taking to high of a dose of Buprenorphine.

From what im getting here from you im concerned he may be useing again. Just my opinion. .

He is doing anything else for recovery?


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2015 3:39 pm 
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OMG thank you for the responses. He has been taking the suboxone since july 2014 and does not do any other outpatient rehab. He lies to the doctor and says he goes but he does not. I keep asking if they are weaning him down and he says no. I think my original post is sugar coating the actual problem because he really does sleep all day long and is up all night until 4am or longer. I am up late too because I work nights, but Im off 4 days a week and always flip back to a day schedule. He is 37yrs old and doesn't talk to me or the kids and when he does he is usually nasty. I've been thinking he is using again too, but I thought you couldn't use on suboxone. He told me that even if he tried it wouldn't work - is that right? Its just that now he is not the same person which is why I am reaching out to see if its the medication or like you said using again. When he was using I did not know for 3 years (why because I thought he was bipolar or depressed) then he would withdraw during my vacations and as a nurse I decided to just think hmm what causes vomiting, sweating, flu like symptoms every three months and then bam it hit me... his best friend was using and he was always with him at the time, so I found fentynal patches and pills everywhere in old jeans under the dresser - I flipped my room upside down and couldn't believe it - I was in shock and just had a melt down and sent him a video of me burning the patches and flushing down the pills. I know that sounds very harsh but I lost all self control. It was an awakening for me and that moment led to loosing all my friends and his friends, him to the dr. for suboxone, and now almost a year later here for help. But since the bedroom flipping and suboxone things have been as I said above.. But he faithfully goes every month to dr. The reason he has no friends is because they wanted his medication and I used some unpleasant words to them and now they are gone. He just has the one best friend, but his friend functions fine so that's why I can't understand whats going on. As I mentioned in my introductory post I am trying to get advice and guidance before I leave my home and him in it behind. I don't love this man - I love the man before all this - so my thought is if I understand him I can be there to better support him and not hurt him with words which I have done earlier on.. lately I just go upstairs give him a hug and kiss, tell him dinner is ready and that is it. I have caught him crying a few times but just stay quiet and hug him tell him, Im here if you want to talk - he never does. So, thank you so much for your feedback because It just gives me a sense that I am not loosing my mind here with all this.
Thanks,


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2015 3:55 pm 
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Jada,

I agree with razor, it sounds like him using again is a very real possibility. If he's going to the doctor once a month, he can go off his sub for awhile and use. He can start taking his sub again leading bk up to his next appointment. Now I'm not saying he's definitely using, but this doesn't sound like someone who's been on sub for a whole yr almost. My life turned bk to normal. I got my fight for life bk again. I never sleep all day and I'm not moody in any way. The sexual side effects are very real though, even in women.

Also, instead of using, could he possibly be bipolar or depressed? It could be that also. Keep an eye on him, is he being secretive or anything that mimics how he acted when he used to use? Their are ppl that sell or trade their sub to get opiates to get high on also. Maybe get a look at his sub, is there the right amount in his bottle or box. There are ways to snoop and tell lol. I understand u need and want answers, and u deserve them. Feel free to ask any questions u want. I hope it isn't that he's using again. There are lots of ppl who stop using and when they get on sub, they realize they have an undiagnosed mental condition. That could very well be the issue too. I hope this helps u. Let us know what you find out. I'll be happy to help u in any way I can. Good luck.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2015 5:26 pm 
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I was reluctant to say it, but it sounds like using to me as well (with the possible exception of depression or bipolar). The one behavior I had in common with him when I was using was staying up all night. To an outsider it probably looked like a manic episode, but the morphine would energize me and I would get involved with something and end up staying up all night, and then crashing later and sleeping a long time.

I also agree about the Low T (testosterone), whether it's from Suboxone or other opioids. In fact, low T can cause depression, moodiness, fatigue, etc. That would be a good place to start; getting his Testosterone levels checked.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2015 6:08 pm 
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The reason I'm so passionate about this issue is because I had a family member that pulled one over on us. After I got straightened out and realized what a blessing sub is, I did my very best to get this person in my clinic. It worked and for a couple months, we all thought things were going great. Then too many red flags were going on. Long story short, this person was pretending to be serious and following all the rules. At first, they sold and traded most of the sub to buy their drug of choice. They'd only take sub on days they couldn't find anything and when it was close to the next appointment. Then it finally got to the point where they lied and just took the money they were supposed to be spending on the Dr and meds, and spent it completely on drugs. I never understood why they had such a blessing in their hands but chose to throw it away for a life of withdrawal, lies, and desperation. But honestly, if the person isn't ready, there's nothing anyone can do to make them hit that breaking point.

I hope this isn't the case with ur hubby, jada. I just wanted to educate ya a little bit so that if this is what is going on, maybe u can help him because addicts need help no matter what. In the end, when addiction gets its grip on u, u feel so alone and it's definitely not good.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2015 9:59 pm 
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Jada,
I cant know for sure but he needs to understand that your on to him somewhat. Ive read your other post as well. Addiction is a family disease. Your whole family is suffering unfortunately. And he knows it. You say you have caught him crying. That is guilt imo. He knows things are messed up. He is alone. That is the worst.
You mentioned all his friends are gone, all but the "best friend" who seems to be doing well. Is he really? Im sure he "looks "good when he is around. He could be his last useing friend. Thats what i had the last days of my active addiction.
I was a monster .

To understand all this you have to understand opiate addiction fully. It traps you. Nothing else is important. He isn't working so what is he doing?

Best thing we can do while in recovery is to have a stroug purpose in life. Life changing things. Positive things.

When in this trap we lie. We lie about everything. He lies to his dr. This is not great sign. I think you know this.

Maybe is time to flip that room again. Or calmly tell him what you think. About needing more help. If he is indeed useing
and he can as jenn said you need to show him that consequences are going to be felt.
Believe it or not right now sub maybe the only thing saving his life . With it in his system the full opiates will have a less affect. Unless he has turned to another drug.

Look im just giving you my opinion here from what your posts have said. Its hard to point a finger at someone when you dont really know.

This man isnt the same guy as you said , but he could be again. If done the right way he can have his life back. He has to want it more.

I do hope you can have a calm or not so calm sit down with him, he may just be crying out for help Jada.


Read as much as you can here and also go over to The Talkzone an read Dr Junigs blog. He owns this site and there is so much to learn..

Keep posting..we er all here to help you...

Razor


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 16, 2015 7:57 am 
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Jada

You have gotten some good information from the members here and even Dr J IMO. It could be either depression with guilt or he is using again or both.

I became an opiate addict (pain pills for chronic pain) later in life. My one son, unfortunately, became an addict in his late teens. The first time he went to rehab i was so naive! I thought they got him off the drugs and he would go back to "normal". That wasn't what happened. He struggled for several years until finally getting on suboxone & started working on changing. He is a single dad & had the same job for 3 years with promotions, he is doing so much better. It took working on recovery. Sub is just one tool

There is something going on with your husband because of all the red flags so the question is will he go for help....drugs have a hold on a person that is so strong, it's hard to explain. I hated the drugs at the end of my using but i loved them at the same time...it was awful. It's that saying "there is a fine line between love and hate" and that's what happened to me.

I feel for you because i remember when i was so naive about addiction and had no one to talk to. Have you tried Al Anon? It's for family members of people using drugs and/or alcohol.

In closing i offer these suggestions..ask hubby to sign a waiver so you can talk to his doctor or even go to an appointment with him. Get that psych eval as others have mentioned and above all take care of yourself.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 16, 2015 10:11 am 
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Jada

The situation you described sounds like your husband is actively using and is in and out of withdrawal.
The sleeping all day(if he is even sleeping) is looking for relief sleeping is a way he would do this to not feel the pains of withdrawal. He probably curses the moment he wakes up because the withdrawal sets in. This could indicate the drug is not be available. Look for patterns. The days he's sleeping could tell you rather he was able to get his drug. The depression could be from this up and down cycle of withdrawal. I am assuming you knew he was going to get on Suboxone? I can tell you that theses things are not normal for someone who takes Suboxone, letting the process work.

He may not only be using opiates, but Methamphetamine as well or anything he can get his hands on.
Could figure out a way to get his urine and do a at home drug screen to see what is in his system?
One way to get his attention would be to talk about drugs. Be casual or not..... only you can make that call.

Maybe ask him what his drug of choice is? You stated you are a nurse. One way, to get his attention is to talk about drugs. I don't mean the dare program type of talk, I mean name some prescription drugs or street drugs to get him to open up. try to get as much Intel as you can so you can make the informed decision on what to do.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 16, 2015 2:37 pm 
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I want to offer my story, because I see similarities between your husband and me.

First, let me say that these other posters are probably correct. The big difference between your husband and me when I first went on suboxone is that my mood didn't fluctuate like his. I was emotional and extremely grateful.

When I was in active addiction I slept all day when my son was in school and then I doped up a good portion of the night. I was not working, I only had to pick my son up from school every day. (My husband dropped him off every morning.) So my days and nights were switched.

When I went on sub it was an amazing feeling! Being released from the obsession to use was incredible. However, my days and nights were still backward. And I stayed in my room 95% of the time. I have taken baby steps since then to change my behavior, but it took over a year to return to a normal schedule! I stayed in my room because it was the place I felt safe and secure. My hub and I have separate bedrooms because he works nights too. So I had my phone and laptop and everything I needed in my room. We own a townhouse, so we still saw each other a lot. My son often brought his homework up and did it on my bed, so I wasn't a complete hermit.

The other thing? I did not want to leave my house either. However, I knew that these were things I needed to work on! So I took small steps. I LOVE babies! And I have provided childcare for a good portion of my adult life. So I found a non-profit daycare that always needed volunteers. (The moms of the babies were addicts in treatment, so I also felt like I was giving back.) I started volunteering there for several hours 2 days a week. After 6 months I found a part-time nanny position.

Since that time I have been on several vacations, one was 4 weeks long! My daughter-in-law (I have 2 step children who are in their 30s) just had a baby and I will be visiting and helping with the baby when I'm not working. It's been 3.5 years since I started suboxone and it's taken this long to have a life that looks like a normal person. I am seeking education for a new career as I write this.

I have one request of you. When you talk to your husband, come from a place of caring if you can. I understand that you are frustrated. You deserve to be frustrated! But the man you married is somewhere in the stranger who inhabits your house now. It sounds like your husband has not left active addiction behind. But if/when he does decide to be in recovery, he may not jump into what you consider normal behavior right away. I wish you the absolute best. Please let us know how it goes when you talk to him about it. We can be excellent support to you because we know what we've put our spouses through.

Good luck,
Amy

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 17, 2015 8:28 pm 
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Hey Jada,

First of all I want to tell you how sorry I am that you and your family have been affected by this awful disease. The entire process can be so frustrating to those family members who aren't the one who is the addict, and it is really hard to work through the process from start to finish. Especially when the addict in question may not yet be ready to get sober.

The fact is that there isn't a sure way to tell if he is still using, but it sounds like there is a good chance. IMO, it could also be that he is dealing with some depression or bi-polar and could be over medicated with his suboxone as well. Being on very high doses of subs can cause fatigue and sleeping a lot. The one thing we know for sure is that it is definitely time for you both to sit down and have a serious discussion. As Amy suggested, try not to go after him in anger or frustration, that will only get his guard up and make him resent your questions. I would just ask him point blank how he is doing, if he is taking his meds as prescribed, and tell him that you need to see proof that he is taking his recovery seriously. Be sure he understands that you only want what is best for him and his recovery, and that you are trying to make your marriage work. There is nothing wrong with you asking him to take his meds in front of you every day so that you can be sure he isn't diverting/sharing, or just not taking them in order to be able to use other opiates. The friend situation definitely sounds suspicious to me. It's possible that your husband could be sharing his meds with this friend in return for harder drugs throughout the month. Again, none of this is a sure thing, and he could just be really depressed and need some real help from you and a therapist to get himself pulled out of it. The one thing we know for sure is that this isn't going to get any better if you ignore it. If he wants to make your marriage work then he won't be opposed to doing whatever he needs to do to regain your trust. It won't be easy, and he may balk at the idea at first, but give him your requests and then allow him time (not too much time) to make his decision. If he is really working on his recovery he should be open to the idea.

If you have any other specific questions please don't hesitate to ask whatever you would like. Most of us have been in his shoes in this type of situation and we may be able to help you talk to him in a way that won't make him feel attacked. As uncomfortable and hard as it is, it really has to be done. You have every right to have a transparency surrounding every aspect of his recovery. If you are going to make a marriage work, there has to be some accountability and a willingness to open up about this.

You should also be aware that even if he has relapsed, it doesn't mean he won't eventually get sober. Recovery is a long process and the addict has to be ready to give it 100% if it is going to work. The majority of us don't get it right on the first try, but if the desire is there it will eventually stick. Don't give up hope on him if he is willing to talk about it and give it another try.

I wish you the best of luck. Please let us know how it goes. If you need support at any point along the way just reach out.

Q

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