It is currently Fri Aug 18, 2017 10:07 pm



All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Our Sponsors





Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 7 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Please Read This TL;DR
PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2015 10:13 pm 
Offline
Average Poster
Average Poster

Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2009 5:28 pm
Posts: 27
I've been on Suboxone maintenance for about ten years.

I started taking it for depression, and i pulled that off by getting a poppy tea habit, just for an excuse. Please don't judge me on that, i know it was really stupid and i've judged my own self plenty.

The salient point is that i never had a real problem with opiates, i never actually could tick any of the "addict" boxes, and so the only experience i have with withdrawals is some relatively mild and short term suffering while transitioning to and from Suboxone and pain medications for surgery.

Recently (or recently enough) my wife left me and i have not recovered from that. I lost pretty much everything that mattered to me including my home, my dogs, and of course my marriage and all the hopes and dreams that went along with that. It was, and is, horrible in and of itself because i simply can't seem to get over the loss; absent everything i wanted for my life i haven't been able to find something else i want. I feel empty, meaningless, and hopeless in the most tangible sense of the word. I am alone and isolated and the social services in this area are still in the dark ages, so i have absolutely no support.

Since i didn't have reason to stick around my wife without a marriage to go along with her, i moved back to another state where we had lived before. I *thought* that all i'd have to do is show up at my old doctor's office, and everything would be OK at least medically, but it didn't happen like that. I'd been gone too long, therefore i was no longer his patient, therefore i'd have to register with the clinic as a new patient. But my doctor wasn't taking new patients.

Thence ensued the trials and tribulations of trying to find a Suboxone doctor. It'd be almost comical if it wasn't so tragic. I call the doctor's offices and get as much information as possible so i don't waste time, money, and travel only to discover that it isn't going to work out, not least because i am running out of medication and can't afford to lose time. I admit, i am not very good at this sort of thing and my wife used to do it for me, but the offices (receptionists, or whoever answers the phone), do not volunteer information and often, don't even know the answers to my questions. So the only real way to find out if a doctor is for me or not, is to see the doctor. Which means waiting for an appointment to come around, (as much as three months), traveling to the appointment, filling out all the paperworks and doing the interviews and only then finding out, it isn't gonna work.

From what i have been told by the doctors themselves, the entire southern section of the state i chose to move to is experiencing an epidemic of addiction. Therefore, (it supposedly follows), the doctors are under pressure from the medical board, which is probably under pressure from the DEA, and so everyone taking Suboxone regardless of circumstance or individual concerns, is shoved into one-size-fits-all "recovery" programs of accelerated detox. E.g. i am currently on 8mgs and one clinic wanted me on 6mg, 4mg, 2mg, and then off, in as many monthly appointments. But it didn't matter anyway because the doctor himself told me i didn't belong in his clinic and strongly suggested i go elsewhere, even though he knows every elsewhere is pretty much the same.

Apart from my own predicament, i think this is just terrible because i seriously doubt it works. I mean if the problem is as widespread as they claim, and this is the system in place, then manifestly it doesn't work and they're only just assuring themselves repeat customers. And probably simultaneously giving a boost to the black market in heroin. But i didn't come here to get political, sorry.

Anyhow there are other complications as well, e.g., i also take clonazepam for panic attacks and i've been on that medication for most of my adult life. Sometimes i will get through an entire interview with a doctor and agree to his terms and everything looks fine until he learns this, and then it’s full stop "no, go away". I guess they are scared of lawsuits, because of the explicit warning that comes with Suboxone, so my ten years with no problems doesn't matter.

The next nearest possible place to find a doctor is in yet another state, at least a five hour drive. I started going down the list but started hearing the same crap again about weekly $300 visits, intensive $900/month recovery programs, no clonazepam allowed, and/or accelerated 6-month "detox", and all the wind went out of my sails.

Having been on Suboxone for so long, i had a sizable surplus which has kept me going this far. But what with all the logistical and bureaucratic snafus i am now down to 20 tablets and i am more frightened than i've ever been about anything in my life. At least with my wife around, i could tap into her optimism and perseverance, and i could have hope it would all be OK because it usually was.

Like i said i have never suffered full-blown opiate withdrawals in my life, and the relatively mild taste i've gotten only terrified me of ever having them again. I am simply not constitutionally equipped to deal with it, and don't think that i would make it. Further, no one has offered ANY advice as to what to do on the day i run out of medication, except ironically to go to the emergency room where apparently they will give me 3 days worth of Suboxone before forgetting about me again. So all i can think to do in this impending emergency is to either find a methadone clinic or to obtain something on the street, either of which would be insanely stupid and tragic given that i didn't have such a problem before Suboxone. Also, from my experience with post-surgical meds, it seems that any dosage of opiates equaling the potency of Suboxone and preventing withdrawals, will also stone me and i don’t want to be stoned on top of all these other problems. Nor do i want the stress of doing illegal stuff, on top of all these other problems. Only at this point if nobody will help me, what else do i do except whatever i can do, to save my own self?

My last two doctors explicitly said that an accelerated detox was inappropriate for me, and that furthermore stopping at all is problematic because of post-withdrawal depression. (I hate irony, when it happens to me). They said i need stability and support before i even think about stopping the medication, and they said this before my whole world fell apart. I should mention, on top of all this i am functionally homeless. I have an old RV to live in but i move about... haven't been able to commit to a space to put it because i don't know where i might have to be, in order to take care of myself. Meanwhile my most desperate desire is to just be somewhere, anywhere i can belong, and quietly put my pieces back together.

I'm not opposed to getting off this stuff, i mean if the doctors, the medical boards, and the government are gonna conspire to make it a problem, then i could be persuaded that this is a problem in and of itself to warrant getting off of it. But i want a program for *me*. I want a doctor who understands my circumstances and will at least work with me in my own unique best interests. This shouldn't be too much to ask should it?

Even so, it's not hard to imagine myself in such horrific suffering that i wished i had any sort of help at all. Am i being stupid, for not agreeing to any and all conditions no matter how inappropriate, expensive, and/or seemingly impossible?

I don't know really what i am asking. Obviously none of you folks can find a doctor for me. But i'm getting to the point where i'd even the existence of methadone clinic would comfort me, if i knew where to look for one of those. (They seem to be either non-existent, or a big secret, in any case i don't even know the right questions to ask to find them nor how to express my problem so i don't get turned away even from even the last resort). And i will take any advices offered.

It'd be helpful just to know someone took the time to read and understand my story. Having been refused so many times, having heard so many unreasonable demands, having visited so many blatant profit mills based on human suffering, and at the end of it all feeling utterly abandoned by the medical profession, the mental health system, and even friends and family, my innate cynicism has hit an all time high and my faith in humanity, an all time low. I am so frustrated and frightened i can't even maintain the struggle to save myself; it's paralyzing. I have no interest in calling more doctors only to be told "no" or to wait the two months i don't have for an appointment where i am told "no". But if i don't then in about three weeks i will either be in an opiate stupor, or dead.

Please someone say something hopeful?

-joe


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2015 5:30 am 
Offline
Super Poster
Super Poster
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jun 30, 2013 5:05 am
Posts: 156
Hi Joe,
I was captivated by your post and I'm truly moved by all that you are dealing with right now.
Securing a spot with a prescriber is probably the icing on the darn cake!
Let me remind you, what feels like loss today, will look a little different with even just a little bit of time.
I have been in a similar situation and it forces you back to the basics of survival.
Stability is a priority, but what does this mean for you and what is within reach to actualise this? You are in a unique situation that could be advantageous as far as locating a DR. you are not bound by a postcode so this is in your favour. Even if you decide to stop suboxone, I wouldn't even entertain the idea right now. Joe, while I understand it may all feel so overwhelming right now,harness that energy, focus on finding a DR, one step at a time. All you need is for ONE thing to fall into place.
I'm so impressed by your writing, you express yourself beautifully.
Really glad you have joined us, you are among people who care and I care about you.
please keep us updated on your situation. I'm sorry I couldn't offer you much but there are some very knowledgable people here who will hopefully join the conversation.
Take care x


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2015 12:22 pm 
Online
Moderator
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:48 pm
Posts: 1314
Hey Joe,
Sorry life has beat on you . I get it. Your post was hard hitting. As the last poster has said though you do have options.

You can rebuild Joe. Glad you found us here. So many of us have edn wnere you are now one way or the other.

Joe, you cant go back to where you were before Suboxone. I think you may know this. So, what to do now? The most important thing ,if it were me,would be to find a provider, ANY provider at this point and get started in whatever program they offer. You need your Med. Going without it at this point in your life frankly scares me for you.

This is just my opinion.

Yes, you may very well have to give up your other medicine. The whys at this point can t be changed Joe. I have issuse with my drs too, but this is the system as it is . Some of it may be broken but ive had to live with One Size Fits All" for close to 5 years.. but for right now id find a dr asap. I understand what you want,and there may be a dr out there somewhere who cares about you needs totally. But give yourself some time and get stable with a new provider.

Ill be hopeing and prayn for you Joe. Dont give up man. You can come back.


Top
 Profile  
 
Our Sponsors
PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2015 1:50 pm 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jan 02, 2011 12:35 am
Posts: 2801
Location: Southwest
It really hurt to read your post. I too lost a marriage and had to start over. The main difference was that it was 70% my fault for the relationship to end. My first love of Seagram's Extra Dry Gin kind of got in the way of living a normal life. So what if my gimlets were almost a quarts worth? She didn't understand my needs.

Now with you, I am going to say that you need to go into hyperdrive and start the phone calls. If you can't find a Suboxone doctor to help you, turn left and try for a pain management place. Ask for either Subutex or at the very least a Butrans Patch. The highest strength of the patch is about 2 mg's total for the day but your body will adjust. It's the same ingredient as Suboxone. Buprenorphine. Ask for the 20 mcg patch.

That's about all I can think of for now. No, you don't want to be on pain pills, that would prove disastrous.

Go hit the phone! You will succeed!

rule

_________________
Don't take yourself so damn seriously


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2015 7:28 pm 
Offline
Average Poster
Average Poster

Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2009 5:28 pm
Posts: 27
I know i buried it in verbiage but a central point i was trying to get across is that i don't have the energy to do this. I expended what little i had on the effort thus far. I can't access the energy outside my walls, i can't even access my most reliable energetic source of anger and outrage. It's hard to explain but there's a point where frustration and meaningless meet, a sort of mathematical cancellation of initiative.

And i know, i said my wife left me "recently" and to me it might as well have happened this morning, but i think it is going on about a year and a half since she split. I have tried to move on, i have tried to find something that matters to me, i have even tried volunteering and investing in hobbies, anything to make any sort of fabricated meaning no matter how temporal or superficial. Every day, it still feels like she just left me when i woke up. In five and a half decades on this planet and a whole bunch of really extreme stuff happening to me, this is by far the most devastating event of my life.

I know that i *can* rebuild. It's a matter of finding reason to do that, and then making suitable accommodations like, for starters, an address.

Clearly, no matter how bad things get, they can always get worse. I think that maybe i didn't put as much effort as i could when i had the energy because, given the spiritual void at the center of me, i didn't feel it mattered much if i ended up soaking this empty vessel in heroin or whatever. It was only when i got down to about a month's worth of old pills that i started wondering about the practicality of that plan, and got really scared. Which is paralyzing in and of itself. Understand that in anything i do of this sort, i am pushing past a default state of extreme anxiety. I don't even like talking on the phone because my brain stops working and my words go all wonky. That's just the baseline me, and when fear and grief are piled on top it's just exponentially harder. Soaking in heroin until i die seemd almost enticing by comparison, but apparently only in theory because i chickened out when it got real.

Anyhow please, i am confused on some of the practical matters advised here.

E.g. while i probably can't die as a direct result of opiate withdrawals, i can as a result of abrupt cessation of benzodiazepines. So i mean, even if i reluctantly assented to discontinuing a medicine that helps me with my life, as medically advised it is a process to do so and that takes time. Alternately, even if i did it yesterday and somehow avoided going into convulsions or psychosis, it would still be in my urine when i showed up at any Suboxone appointment in the near future and i would be dismissed without a prescription. So the point of discontinuing clonazepam being to avoid opiate withdrawals, i don't understand how that is supposed to work. It's stuff like this that the doctors just shrug at like "the whys don't matter" and then casually toss me to a predictable and preventable fate, that baffle me to the point of hopelessness and now a third party is saying something similar.

Also i have no medical history on which to request help with pain. The Suboxone made it hopeless to ask, so i've kept my pain to myself. And in my experience going into a doctor's office and asking for a specific medication is the best way to get nothing except a lecture about asking for a specific medication.

Maybe i am misunderstanding things. The fluctuating and extremely weird realities i've been visiting have left me awful confused. I mean, just for instance for most of these past ten years the process was to visit my GP every three or four months, exchange pleasantries, and leave with my subscription. Even the strictest doctor i had, who made me take pee tests and counted my empty packets, did not treat me as a morally bankrupt junkie. Whereas, one of these clinic hacks opined that all four of my previous doctors had "abused" me by providing maintenance instead of detox with urgent haste. He was so certain of this because in his world it isn't opinion, it's objective fact. When reality conflicts with experience, cognitive dissonance barges in and trashes the place.

I am not sure what i mean by "stability", i just know that as it is my life is so wobbly it makes my tummy lurch. But i do have ties to this postcode. I do have friends and family in the area, it's just they aren't helping. Some have the same prejudices as the system. Others who at least tried to help a bit, stopped trying because they ended up as frustrated and helpless as i am, (which is rather scary when i think about it). And i haven't been in an emotional state conducive to socializing. The medication issue itself being a major disruptive factor, (for instance, preventing me from getting a place to park my house), i was hoping my social life would improve once that was settled. It won't, if i don't live near people i already know, with whom i can practice being human again.

So if i were given to prayer i'd request a situation similar to what i had previously such that the medication is not a central focus of my existence, and i can settle down a bit and reassemble something that looks like a life.

I hope i'm not seeming difficult and contrary. Not that i'm *not* difficult and contrary but in this case, it's more the nature of the circumstances.

I meant it when i said that it would help just to know someone heard me, and i am grateful to you for hearing me.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2015 7:41 pm 
Offline
Average Poster
Average Poster

Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2009 5:28 pm
Posts: 27
Haha,, "sub"scription. I could correct it but it's funny.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2015 5:03 am 
Offline
Super Poster
Super Poster
User avatar

Joined: Sun Jun 30, 2013 5:05 am
Posts: 156
Joe, I'm beginning to understand some of the limitations of securing a DR, however It is still very possible and I would at least try to exhaust a few more possibilities. I know it's easy for me to say...BUT considering the alternative, I'm worried what state you will find yourself in if you resign yourself by default and the day soon arrives when your sub has finished.
Honestly joe, imagine how this will feel.
IF you are debilitated by anxiety, fear and grief now, I'm scared of how you will cope adding WD into the mix. If you are not stable it WILL push you over the edge.
I know it feels impossible but you still have some choices and there is still time.
You deserve to have a wonderful life joe and I sense you are an exceptional person.
Please Let us know how you are doing,
Take care because we care,


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 7 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Our Sponsors
Suboxone Forum latest topics RSS feed Subscribe to the entire forum
 

 

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

  • Board Certified Psychiatrist
  • Asst Clinical Professor, Medical College of Wisconsin

Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group