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PostPosted: Wed Nov 10, 2010 11:02 am 
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smat and romeo - thanks for nice posts.

Romeo - no doubt about the advil. I took it a couple nights ago and it was helpful. I worry about ulcers (I've gotten them before from NSAIDS) though so I try not to take it every night. It's funny how we come full circle. When I started pain meds it was because i wasn't getting enough pain relief from advil and a bevy of other meds they tried as first line options (lyrica, cymbalta, Elavil, Neurontin, it goes on). And for a while there was no doubt that the Norco (Vicodin) was way more effective for me. But it doesn't last. It's a road to nowhere in my opinion. And I was able to go a good 4 years titrating the Norco up and down to control my tolerance. But sooner or later even I, with my supposedly superior tolerance to pain meds, punched the last hole in my ticket.

I don't begrudge others who are in chronic pain who have exhausted all options and want to try life on pain meds. But for me, I would have been wiser to use them very sparingly. Could I have actually done that? Who knows. It's moot now. I know now I lost control of those meds, and I can never go back. At least not for my chronic pain. If I break a leg or need surgery, we'll see I suppose.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 10, 2010 11:35 am 
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Your last post could have been written by me, in fact it was like reading my own thoughts verbatim. All I can say is Amen brother.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 10, 2010 12:44 pm 
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filur11 wrote:
I stopped from 0.30 mg - maybe 0.25 (i dont think i really adjusted to the 0.25 though). And yea, there was some w/d`s. But they seemed to be like you described - not major( but still very uncomfortable when you sit in them).
And for me personally, they didnt throttle up alot so to speak from when they first had materialised - and as a note, my mentally cravings for a dose actually seemed to go down after the first 1-2 days. Maybe its because you fear is being replaced with knowledge.
So if you react like me, and stop from 0.30 mg you will feel the kind of w/d wich is uncomfortable, but still allows you to walk around, get some sleep and take time outs with hot showers, for 4-5 days - with symptoms being better not worse from that point.
Tons off good lucks and wishes from here:)


I wanted to flag this real quick in my thread because I think I am having almost the exact same experience. Thanks for this filur11.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 10, 2010 12:54 pm 
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...and sorry to get all nerdy about this, but I thought I would try to inject some math/science into this. In an earlier thread I described a spreadsheet I created that kept track of the dose "stacking" I was taking. I updated it with my final counts. Some interesting observations.

When I jumped off at .3mg, I actually had roughly .7mg still in my system.

Using a crude half life calculation, it takes roughly 5 days to then get down to .1mg, an amount I am going to assume is negligible.

Don't get me wrong - I am not waiving any victory flags here, but the math is lining up with my experience. Here at day 5, around lunchtime, I feel like I can say I feel better today than I did yesterday.

just thought that was interesting.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 10, 2010 1:29 pm 
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matt -

I am truly impressed by your whole taper and withdrawal so far. You really took the advice that you felt would best work for you and made a positive effort to apply it to your taper. I'm so glad for you that it is working.

I think that at day 5 or so you have probably seen the worst of the physical withdrawals. One slight caution that I would give is just to expect that the recovery process from here will not be exactly linear. In other words, you might feel better and better for several days, and then have one not-so-great day. That doesn't mean that PAWS are setting in or that you will have a bunch of crappy days. Just keep doing what works and don't freak out.

Thanks for continuing to update this thread. It's good to have as many stories as we can so people can figure out what works.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 10, 2010 1:55 pm 
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DOAQ - Thanks for that advice. I appreciate it. Even now. I just went to grab lunch, while I was waiting for my order I felt a complete reversion to yesterday hit me. I was literally thinking "darn - I just told everyone I was improving." Then I walked back to my office, sat down, and I feel much better again. I am sure I'll go through this cycle at least 5 more times today at least.

Then I saw your note...

I know you're talking about the mid to longer term, but even this small experience now I think underscores what you're saying. Reading back through my threads I feel like I am getting a little ahead of myself. I need to respect the recovery process.

Thanks again.


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 Post subject: Day 6 - No Sub
PostPosted: Thu Nov 11, 2010 10:58 am 
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Day 6 - No Sub

Yesterday afternoon was definitely ickier than I had hoped. I felt pretty good up until about lunch and then went downhill from there. But I didn't take the Clonidine so that was a step forward.

Last night sucked. Went to bed at 10. Tossed and turned till 3. Then fell asleep nicely. Unfortunately my wife's alarm went off at 6AM and that was the end of that. She felt bad about it. I told her that was crazy talk. I told her she is the one living our life as it is supposed to be and I am the one disrupting it with this drama. She's awesome.

This morning I feel pretty good again (though tired). Head is clear. Slight chills but not too bad. Some light sweating. But I am working away and am productive (aside from these posts of course :wink: ). But I am going to bet that after lunch is a repeat of yesterday. No problem - if so I'll take a Clonidine. That always helps.

My philosophical waxing for today which all can feel free to ignore. My wife commented off hand at dinner last night that she noticed I have been making funny jokes again like I used to do. It hadn't even occurred to her until that very moment. It really hit me square between the eyes. My wife is incredibly supportive. She knows full well how much pain I am in (she sleeps next to me after all), the dilemma I have faced with how to treat it, and the lengths I have gone to try to treat it. I then asked her if I've been "absent" these past few years on the pain meds. Her response was incredible. Her basic response was - NO not at all (an enormous relief to hear). I have been a wonderful, dedicated father to our children. But she couldn't help but wonder if perhaps I HAVE missed out on some of the little, but great things that make parenthood so wonderful. This hit me in between the eyes even harder. What have I missed out on? Looking back, while taking meds, my mind could only possibly process three basic things 1) tending to my family 2) work and 3) my meds. I wasn't exercising like I used to (though I am limited by my pain of course). I lost most of my hobbies. Lost touch with many of my friends and colleagues. And my memories of all the special moments with my kids are there, but blunted. Like a movie I once saw and not a hard memory I can clearly recall.

Some of that is just the wear and tear of life I suppose. But some of it is surely the decision to treat my pain with opiates. It feels good to get my jokes back and hopefully the other things lost will follow as my recovery progresses. I will certainly use these thoughts to motivate me when I hit the inevitable rough patches.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 11, 2010 12:55 pm 
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I guess it was some old addict who said, Sobriety didn't make all my problems go away, they just got really ----ing clear!

My wife too is ultra supportive, she put up with me for 15 years. I got extremely lucky when I married her and NO her name is not Juliette :). We had a very similar conversation a while back. My heart sank down to my knees when I thought of what I had missed or how the memories are not as vivid as they should be, especially when it came to my daughter. All I can do is move forward and be the best that I can be.

Sometimes the new 'clear head' takes a little getting used to. You seem to have a really good head on your shoulders, a great wife and great children...use them all to continue in your recovery. It's worked well for me so far.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 12:24 am 
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matt wrote:
filur11 wrote:
I wanted to flag this real quick in my thread because I think I am having almost the exact same experience. Thanks for this filur11.


You are very much welcome:) It does seem very similar to what i felt - you are prolly better to describe it though. Its hard to be precise without wondering; do i encourage, without rosecoloring the symptoms? And on the other hand you dont want to be like the doctor who says that the w/d when jumping from 2 mg is mostly "psykological". I think what helped me the most was reading day to day journals - it still helps me btw.

You are prolly moving into the "lingering" phase, which for me mostly consisted of high pulse( in hindsight i should prolly have asked the doctor about some bloodpressure medicin - Clonidine?) which would come and go, tendness in shoulders and some headache. Sleep gets a little better. The lack off natural endophines have caused me some mental problems like social anxiety and a somewhat fragile feeling. But that allso seems to be better day for day. A big possitive for me is that time slowly seems to speed up - the first couple of days one hour felt like 5. Now ( day 24) time seems to pass fluid (suddenly 2 hours have gone without i really noticed it).
Thumbs up for what you have accomplished. Lots off good thoughts from here:) :D


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 Post subject: Day 7 - No Sub
PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 11:25 am 
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It's Day 7 - No Sub.

Yesterday afternoon was uncomfortable, but took a clonidine and felt a little better. Last night my sleep improved significantly. I got a solid 6 hours of uninterrupted sleep. Down at 10 and up at 4AM. Then tossed and turned with light sleep till 7 when I got up. But I did take a sleeping pill so it might be a Pyrrhic victory.

This morning more of the same. Feel good. Fully expect that by 1 or 2PM I won't. But nothing I cannot roll with.

I think I am going to pause my posts for 1 week. Try to focus my mind on life. Based on my research and my doctor's counsel, it would appear that this is going to be my state for at least one more week. So no point posting the same thing over and over and dwelling on relatively minor discomforts. I am hoping that by end of next week, the afternoon ickys are gone, sleep is still spotty but improving, and fuller energy levels are starting to return. In other words - feeling overall at 85-90%. Then the next phase of slow, fluctuating recovery begins which will last ??? which will hopefully get me back to 100% or close to it. My doctor seems impressed with my progress and optimistic that I can see this recovery through. I am feeling that way too.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 2:54 pm 
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Matt -

I'm so glad to hear that you're doing well. I am sure that your positive and proactive attitude has a lot to do with that. I think you have the right idea with stepping away from the computer and getting focused on life and staying busy. I don't even think I posted during my first 7-10 days off of Sub. The less I thought about how I was feeling the easier it was to deal with.

I hope things continue to improve for you and that your pain is manageable with non-narcotic meds. Thanks for keeping us updated & I'm sure we'll all be looking forward to hearing from you when you're ready to post again.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 3:46 pm 
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Matt,

Wow, you are doing soooooo great you are amazing :D I will continue to keep you in my prayers, keep up the good work :D

Have a great week :!: :D


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 4:40 pm 
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Matt, I have to give you a very big thank you for posting all of this updates that you have provided. I hope that one day I too will be getting off of Suboxone - or at least giving it a shot. You are one of very few, if any, that have provided such daily, detailed information. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate it anytime people who taper take the time to post. However, you are one of the very few that I have seen that has provided such great detail and if what you are going through is representative of the typical person, your information is beyond useful. I certainly understand if you don't feel you want to continue posting everyday - or if in someway it makes things harder for you. However, please don't feel like you are being boring or just saying the same thing over and over. I think you are providing incredible insight for more people than you might imagine. I would welcome seeing the daily posts continue or at least perhaps you'll consider every other day or perhaps every three days?

I have to say that at this point it seems to me that there have been about half dozen people here that have gotten over the hump and were able to feel good without daily Suboxone. There are also about a half dozen that tried for two or more months and just could not handle it anymore and came back to Suboxone just so they could feel "normal" I am so anxious to see how you do as each and every person who goes through this helps to provide all of us with a clearer picture of what is likely to happen to us if and when we try to stop Sub on our own.

So, thanks again for all of your time and all of your posts. You truly have helped more people than I think you realize. In fact I'm certain of it.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 5:26 pm 
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Hey all - Thanks for the nice thoughts. Don - I am glad the posts are helpful to you (and perhaps others). It's hard to know the line between being helpful and over-sharing. I am absolutely going to stick around and post for the long term. I do want to try to take a break for a week and try to focus on other stuff. But if I feel a material change over the week (good or bad) from my current expectations I will drop in with a post. Also the posting has been a big comfort to me, so I may just want to. Speak with you all next Friday. Have a great weekend!


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 Post subject: No Sub - Day 13
PostPosted: Thu Nov 18, 2010 2:29 pm 
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OK - so I said I'd be back tomorrow but that I would check in earlier if there was a change.

Quick re-cap

Days 8 and 9 - similar to day 7. One improvement was sleep. Got solid 7 hours - no sleeping pills (stopped them for good night 6) but still using .5mg Klonopin. RLS is gone (for good so far). Also I stopped the Clonodine (for good) so that might explain why the afternoons were still a bit tough.

Days 10 and 11 - Big improvement. Head clear, chill mild, feeling decent. Afternoons still more intense but mild overall. Still sleeping 7 hours which is good. Only new symptom - sweating. I started sweating like it's my job. I am not a sweater by nature so this is a tad uncomfortable. Also sneezing like the dickens.

Day 12 - Took a step backwards to days 7, 8, and 9. Nothing I couldn't handle, but a bummer. Still sweating. At least still getting the 7 hours sleep. If I had to pick one thing to be better, it would be sleep. So I am thankful for that.

Now Day 13 - I woke up with what I am 99% sure is a pretty bad cold. One of my kids is also sick and a cold has been tearing through my office. So today really sucks. Woke up with a vicious sore throat, head congestion, and headache. I've never had this in any withdrawal let alone this one. So I think I am having another so-so day with an actual cold thrown in on top.

But hanging in there. Actually at work. But am really looking forward to getting home.

I'll check back in when the cold symptoms pass so I can re-baseline how I am feeling.


Last edited by matt on Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 18, 2010 2:43 pm 
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Oh, that sucks about the cold. That is one thing I truly miss about being on Suboxone - I never got sick. As soon as I got off Suboxone it was back to catching every cold my kid brought home. Lame.

I'm glad to hear you're hanging in there though.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:59 pm 
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Matt,

Glad to hear from you and that you are making it without too, too much difficulty. I can identify with you on the sweating, it eventually goes away.

DOAQ--I rarely got sick while on subs too, I wonder if there is anything to that? Take subs and live a longer, healthier life due to never getting sick again? :)


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 Post subject: Day 15 - No Sub
PostPosted: Sat Nov 20, 2010 1:11 pm 
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Hey All - Quick update

I definitely had a nasty cold. Woke up this morning feeling SO much better. No sore throat, congestion, headache, or cough. Man that was really trying my patience.

Slept about 7 hours again last night which has been consistent all week. Overall, I am feeling quite good today. Even the sweating and sneezing is starting dissipate along with the chills. But we'll see how this next week goes....

Just wanted to make sure everyone knew that my tough day on 13 (and maybe 12 too) was a bad cold on top of the diminishing PAWS. Didn't want to scare anyone.

I'll check back in around day 21.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 20, 2010 1:34 pm 
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:D Hey Matt,

Glad to see/hear your feeling better :D Keep up the good work :!: :!:


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 10:12 am 
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Hey matt,

How are things going?

This just popped in my head yesterday and I thought you might be able to use it. I remember my addiction counselor telling me that a component of withdrawal was the loss you will feel over quitting your medicine. For a lot of us, it has been our best friend, it has been with us constantly, we look for it in the morning, afternoon and evening. It would comfort us and so on and so on. He said it's like losing a loved one and that we will usually grieve that loss. Sounds crazy, but I know it to be true for me.

The 5 stages of grief are--Denial, Anger (I know that one well), Bargaining--Justification, Depression and finally Acceptance.

I just wanted to give you a heads up in case you're finding yourself a little lost at times. It helped me to remember that part of my withdrawal was grieving the loss of my 'best friend' in the whole world.

Stay strong, bud. Keep moving forward!


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