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PostPosted: Thu Nov 25, 2010 7:53 pm 
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Hi! I've watched a few videos of Dr. Junig's....I was previously a nurse anesthetist and can relate to his story somewhat. I ended up turning in my licenses because of my opiate addiction. I started with opiates in my 20's once or twice, then when in anesthesia residency in the midwest found myself hooked on fentanyl for about a year. I started going to NA meetings but the detox every weekend was killing me and another physician in the meetings told me I needed inpt. txment. I did. I was thankfully intervened by my supervisor at work. (I was finished with the program and on staff at the time). The clinic I worked at has an incredible CD policy for employees. I got paid my salary while in txment even. Unreal! I spent 5 weeks inpt at my own clinic, then they transferred me to a residential house in Wisconsin for 4 months. I had a rough time getting to open up, be honest, find out who I was...I left txment after 2 months and then returned...and completed. So thankful! I took a year off work, went to meetings, was on nothing for maintenance as this was 1994. I then took a job in Texas and did follow up ua's, NA meetings 4/weeks, counseling for 2 years. I was doing well but had no idea how much more I really needed txment to deal with my childhood traumas and undx depression that I was obviously medicating. I ended up drinking, having those really great glasses of red wine thinking that was ok. And soon ended up back on my drug of choice: any opiate available. Did Mx04 subq for a while, vicodin es for a year, got married like a fool, moved to another city with new husband and ended up on fentanyl again at work. Got fired. That was mortifying. Even though I was throwing up after too much fentanyl in the garbage can by my anesthesia machine pretending I might be pregnant. what a sicko!! And then continued to do vicodin, writing rx's, and prepping for a suicide if I got arrested. I then went to a therapist who helped me get into detox. Did detox and then an outpt treatment for 4 months and we moved to the NW (where I am from) and I continued my outpt txment and completed. I had 4 miscarriages, took vicodin again, went to meetings and lied and lied and cried and cried.....I had been going to church and got baptised March 2000 and my addiction was released from me. I didn't have cravings for the first time in my life and I stayed clean and sober for 5 years. My marriage was a nightmare, my husband is a physician and a bully, emotionally abusive, financially abusive, rager...and I was very depressed. I remained sober and clean and continued going to meetings, doing NA/AA work in the women's jail, had a great sponsor, worked the steps, did my much needed 4th step that took 6 hours to read to my sponsor. (I burned it afterwards). Despite our sucky marriage I thought having a baby would cure everything and after I found out my estrogen was low and my eggs scrambled basically we adopted a little girl from China. I was in heaven. My girl and I were together 24/7 and I loved being a stay at home mom with her. We started a 2nd adoption for a special needs girl and we just couldn't seem to finish the paperwork....we talked and said "let's revisit in 6 months". Well, it was providential because the next year, after 3 years of marriage therapy, I left my abusive husband. I took my daughter and moved to the city where we had a weekend condo. The divorce was a nightmare. He is vindictive and despite wanting nothing to do with us in the marriage, he fought me for custody because he knew that is where it would hurt me most. He got custody because of my addiction, although I was clean and sober and my sponsor testified for me. My ua's were clean. It was a true sobriety for me. I was devastated. It was a moment I never thought I'd get through. The emotional pain was severe and I had left my support system, altho people from my church, who knew the issues in our marriage (he has a porn addiction and sex addiction) all abandoned me when I left him. It was a very dark time for me. My parents both got sick, my son's fiance died in a car accident and I lost custody. I ended up relapsing on vicodin.again. I did that for 2 years off and on and made a mess of things. again. I started grad school to get my masters in psychology which was my plan for many many years. I then made a decision to enter methadone txment because I was sick of my roller coaster life on opiates. I couldn't afford bupe at that time and researched both drugs very thoroughly and felt my decision was sound. I have been clean and sober on the Methadone and have been in counseling, going to some meetings. I completed grad school and worked with an agency. I also completed the addictions track at my school because my goal has been to treat medical professionals for chemical dependency. I wrote up a protocol for anesthesia departments about addiction as I had never seen one before. I had also witnessed colleagues die of opiate addiction and I felt lucky to be alive. I feel lucky to be alive. My mom got sicker and had a relapse of her breast cancer and died in february 2010. My ex found out I was on methadone and called my work. Never had I done, or had any employees done, a ua for that agency and when I came back to work after family leave they ua'd me. Then 3 weeks later they fired me. (this state is a no cause state so even though I never signed anything for them to see my ua nor did the lab ask me for a letter from my prescribing dr to prove it wasn't illicit, I am sure that is why I was fired. When I had come back from family leave they gave me a bigger office, said how much they wanted me etc. so it wasn't my work. My work was stellar) I then had to go to court and the judge told me that methadone was just another addiction and she didnt' care what kind of evidence I brought in (I had letters from dr., counselor, and 3 years of clean ua's that I asked to be monitored when providing) and the story ends here where I have to see my daughter only one hour one day a month supervised because of the methadone.
So....this is where I am today. I have been very very angry. I have felt abandoned and hurt and my brother, who is a methamphetamine addict, took me to court over my father who has alzheimers. I won't go into that story but suffice it to say it has been ugly.
I have been struggling to get my private practice going. Work is my solice and I love what I do. But being on methadone has obviously hurt me and now I am day 3 off of it and preparing to go on Bupe. I don't know what the judge will say but i assume it will be better for me to be on bupe then methadone. I want my daughter back. She is mad at me and my ex is not a good guy and does not want me to have a relationship with her because he knows that is what I most want.
I am trying not to feel sorry for myself. I have had an ex husband who has been very vindictive. He has called my friends, people I have dated, my work, my school and using his MD credentials to sound credible and to discredit me. It's a very scary feeling to be this paranoid! But sadly there is a reason.
I guess my question is-is it worth getting off methadone and going on bupe? I am only guessing this is a better option. I have been stable on methadone, although now that I'm off for 3 days I do feel more awake and happier. I do think methadone, for me, has taken a lot of my emotions away, blunted my affect somewhat. I have been on 75mg for about a year..and been on it almost 3 years. All my ua's are clean and I also asked them to be monitored so no one could say I was faking them. I go to meetings, and counseling. I found a great psychiatrist in my city that is helping me to get on bupe. I just went cold turkey from the 75mg and my last dose was Monday at 1pm. I have taken a few vicodins to ease some of the withdrawals and today is my last day of taking vic as I want to see what tomorrow is like if I have withdrawals. I have a few symptoms but not enough to start the subutex. I want to be in moderate withdrawal, yawning, rhinitis, watery eyes, sneezing etc and those are my usual symptoms. Obviously a higher COWS is better but right now it is maybe a 3.
is going off 75mg Methadone going to make it difficult to get on subutex? He deliberately didn't give me suboxone but bupe is a partial agonist/antagonist at the mu receptor so does that mean i can go into precipitated withdrawals with the subutex? I assume yes, altho there is no naloxone in this preparation.
Thanks for any help with this and I'm looking forward to reading others' stories and having the support on this forum.
Also, thanks for reading the long post! Chinagirl


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 Post subject: You are a miracle.......
PostPosted: Thu Nov 25, 2010 9:55 pm 
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China Girl..........
Welcome and thank you for sharing your story. You truly are a miracle to be still alive and I think personally you are making the right decision to focus on YOU so that you can get better and be with your daughter.

Everyone's story is different and even though we can say I was never that bad I always look for the similarities not the differences. Addiction has really grabbed a hold of you and all the things in your personal life certainly are not helping you get where you need to be. I recently went through a divorce and although my story is a little different it caused me to no longer be with my two boys and I ended up living 7 hours away and driving to see them every two weeks, staying in hotels and my addiction to opiates just kept getting worse and worse.

It seems you have done a lot to educate yourself and others about addiction and methadone was a good choice for you at the time. This is only my personal opinion as I am not a doctor just an addict but when I look at the way I have been treated by the medical profession and individuals in the community (pharmacies, AA members..Etc) Methadone certainly has more of a stigma then suboxone does. Most do not know what it is and I have to explain it to them- this includes..Nurses, Doctors and Dentist. I think subutex will work well for you however I have never made the switch from methadone to suboxone. What I have read though is normally the person has tapered to 30mgs or less and waited 3 to 4 days before being inducted on suboxone. Others on this forum have made the jump and will be along to help answer some of your questions.

My own personal opinion is that I would want to take suboxone because of the naloxone. Even though the naloxone is very minimal metabolizes very quickly (I think in the liver) if you had a judge do any research they would see that subutex is pure bupe and is abused more than suboxone especially if someone has IV abuse history. I have taken both and I did not have any problems with either but many doctors will not give you subutex unless you have gained trust, your female and pregnant or need it financially so you can get the generic.

I think you will find that this medicine will really help you with your cravings and w/d. It is an amazing medicine and when I first got on it 19 months ago my life has changed dramatically. I no longer crave opiates at all........I used to not be able to drive by a hospital or an Urgent Care without pulling in with some bullshit story trying to get pain pills.. It did not matter where or what state I was in. My goal when traveling on a weekly basis was to find an emergency room close to my hotel. Pretty soon I think I was addicted to the whole process of checking in, getting called back, seeing the doctor getting an IV and finally some pain meds. I was always successful and I hated it and I am so lucky I am not in jail.

Suboxone has helped me with so much to include my depression. It takes care of my pain, cravings and overall makes me feel normal. I am very happy you have made this choice in your life. Lately I have been debating on tapering and getting off suboxone and I have made a list of the pros and cons of doing so..........am I really ready? This is something I have to make a decision on but I am in no hurry. Suboxone has actually put me in the right frame of mind to be able to make a decision.

I share this positive stuff with you because when I read your story it is as though suboxone was created just for you. I honestly think it will save your life. It will put your addiction in remission so you can take care of you, get your business up and running and prepare you for your ultimate goal of getting your daughter back.

I also have a very vindictive side to myself and I want so bad for you to email me your ex husband's name because I can be even more vindictive... I can cause some damage........do you want to see crazy!!!! All without hurting him (physically). Ok we can sort of laugh but that pisses me off so bad. You have enough issues going on that this control freak who is in a position of authority can abuse it so easily to cause pain. I have a way of dealing with those people and they never even know where it came from but anonymous phone calls and letters are sent everyday to Govt. Agencies, Medical Boards, Homeland Security, IRS..the President... you name it and I am very creative....alright enough of that fantasizing.

I really hope this works for you and you experience the change in your life so many of us on this forum have. As you already know it not just the medicine as many of us go to therapy, counseling or 12 step meetings which sounds as though you already do this.
I am your number one fan right now and I only wish the best for you......you deserve it. I hope you keep us posted.

Jim


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 Post subject: Jim....thank you
PostPosted: Thu Nov 25, 2010 11:29 pm 
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Jim,

I just wrote you a response and then it disappeared....
I''ll try it again.
Thank you for writing. I appreciate you sharing your story and reading mine and taking the time to respond in such a caring way. You made me cry....then you made me laugh my ass off! (The revenge fantasies....Oh, I've had mine, too. If you've ever seen American History X and the horrible sidewalk scene with Edward Norton....well, my fantasy includes that which now makes me sound completely mentally ill!) I've never hated anyone in my life ever until my ex. Oh, well. That does me no good. I work on forgiveness every single day with that man.

Addiction is an amazing thing. Insidious yet it takes you down in a split second. You don't know what hit you some days. i totally understand the driving to urgent cares/ER's....I'd always leave thinking what a loser, addict, junkie I was. I hated myself. But did it stop me? No. Or, writing Rx's and then manipulating so no one would ever consider I would write a fake rx. I fessed up in treatment and I am grateful i didn't go to jail. I've been through a lot and yet managed to stay out of jail and no DUI.

I hope you are reunited with your boys? It is horrible to have that kind of emotional pain. My daughter lives 3 hours away...i would drive down to pick her up half way (before the ex found out about methadone) and she'd come back to the city with me. On Sunday when we'd have to leave she would get so quiet and bummed out. Now she is just confused. Where is here mama? I refuse to stoop to my exes level and I will not talk badly about him to her. She will figure it out one day so i don't say anything to her like he won't let me see you....I just stay calm, focused on doing what I need to do for her. Then on the other weekends I'd drive the other way North 5 hours to take care of ailing parents. My life has been just a crazy time the past 5 years...stress every single day all day. My adrenals are shot!

I am looking forward to being on Suboxone. I believe it will save me. I am not in any hurry to get off of it but my new dr, a psychiatrist who really gets addiction, says it takes 4 months to get your brain stabilized and then he lightly encourages pt to get off of it but if they need it he understands that too. My cravings for opiates are just like everyones...intense and constant when I am on nothing. Even my first five years clean i still had a lot of cravings. And on methadone I did, too, but i didn't want to go higher than 75mg. Maybe I should have. But I had already gained too much weight and was "dead" inside....I didn't listen to music, didn't feel like myself and felt a bit angry all the time. Not dissing methadone because it did its job. I stabilized my recovery on it but now its time to go off of it. I just don't want to get protracted withdrawls from doing it too early since I didn't taper to 30mg. I am just wondering if I wait until I feel the moderate withdrawals that it will be enough to start the subutex.

I want to be happy again. I'm sick of myself and that's with 2.5 years on methadone and off the roller coaster of addiction. I cannot believe I lost custody and the more the methadone gets out of my system the more the reality comes to light and it is scary. No one gets methadone. The stigma is just too much. It needs to be renamed and reintroduced. It does work. I am not saying that at all. It is just crap to hear a judge say what she said to me when I know exactly how stabile I was and that I didn't deserve to need supervision to see my daughter just because of methadone. It's mortifying.

Thanks again, for the post, and I wish you all the best. Happy thanksgiving.
Chinagirl


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 Post subject: Jim....thank you
PostPosted: Thu Nov 25, 2010 11:33 pm 
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Jim,

I just wrote you a response and then it disappeared....
I''ll try it again.
Thank you for writing. I appreciate you sharing your story and reading mine and taking the time to respond in such a caring way. You made me cry....then you made me laugh my ass off! (The revenge fantasies....Oh, I've had mine, too. If you've ever seen American History X and the horrible sidewalk scene with Edward Norton....well, my fantasy includes that which now makes me sound completely mentally ill!) I've never hated anyone in my life ever until my ex. Oh, well. That does me no good. I work on forgiveness every single day with that man.

Addiction is an amazing thing. Insidious yet it takes you down in a split second. You don't know what hit you some days. i totally understand the driving to urgent cares/ER's....I'd always leave thinking what a loser, addict, junkie I was. I hated myself. But did it stop me? No. Or, writing Rx's and then manipulating so no one would ever consider I would write a fake rx. I fessed up in treatment and I am grateful i didn't go to jail. I've been through a lot and yet managed to stay out of jail and no DUI.

I hope you are reunited with your boys? It is horrible to have that kind of emotional pain. My daughter lives 3 hours away...i would drive down to pick her up half way (before the ex found out about methadone) and she'd come back to the city with me. On Sunday when we'd have to leave she would get so quiet and bummed out. Now she is just confused. Where is here mama? I refuse to stoop to my exes level and I will not talk badly about him to her. She will figure it out one day so i don't say anything to her like he won't let me see you....I just stay calm, focused on doing what I need to do for her. Then on the other weekends I'd drive the other way North 5 hours to take care of ailing parents. My life has been just a crazy time the past 5 years...stress every single day all day. My adrenals are shot!

I am looking forward to being on Suboxone. I believe it will save me. I am not in any hurry to get off of it but my new dr, a psychiatrist who really gets addiction, says it takes 4 months to get your brain stabilized and then he lightly encourages pt to get off of it but if they need it he understands that too. My cravings for opiates are just like everyones...intense and constant when I am on nothing. Even my first five years clean i still had a lot of cravings. And on methadone I did, too, but i didn't want to go higher than 75mg. Maybe I should have. But I had already gained too much weight and was "dead" inside....I didn't listen to music, didn't feel like myself and felt a bit angry all the time. Not dissing methadone because it did its job. I stabilized my recovery on it but now its time to go off of it. I just don't want to get protracted withdrawls from doing it too early since I didn't taper to 30mg. I am just wondering if I wait until I feel the moderate withdrawals that it will be enough to start the subutex.

I want to be happy again. I'm sick of myself and that's with 2.5 years on methadone and off the roller coaster of addiction. I cannot believe I lost custody and the more the methadone gets out of my system the more the reality comes to light and it is scary. No one gets methadone. The stigma is just too much. It needs to be renamed and reintroduced. It does work. I am not saying that at all. It is just crap to hear a judge say what she said to me when I know exactly how stabile I was and that I didn't deserve to need supervision to see my daughter just because of methadone. It's mortifying.

Thanks again, for the post, and I wish you all the best. Happy thanksgiving.
Chinagirl


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Fond Du Lac Psychiatry
Dr. Jeffrey Junig, M.D., Ph.D.

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