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PostPosted: Mon Nov 28, 2011 8:39 pm 
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Romeo oh Romeo Thanks for being honest. I look at it as another lesson learned and I'm glad your honest about it. I've been on subs alittle over 3 months and I think about pain pills ALMOST everyday. I have a hard time with my recovery I think often I wish I had a joint or man some pain pills would really be good about now. I think this is something we all struggle with on a daily basis. You slipped now get up and move forward that is what you do. Thank God your moving forward and try not to look back too too much. Learn and share from your mistakes and achivements.

Thanks again your human and your "HERE" for a reason. Fight the Good Fight and you will overcome and conquer.

Mel :wink:

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 28, 2011 8:40 pm 
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Wow, dude...that was kinda harsh.

I disagree that slips or relapses undo all the good that's gone before. How does that work? Some kind of magic or something?

I'm not saying that it's a great thing to have happnen, but you can learn from it and move on. It's not like a lapse is a reset button that puts you right back where you were before you ever got into recovery.

In fact, I think that's a dangerous attitude. I wonder how many small lapses have turned into full-blown relapses because someone figured fuck it, I just blew all my clean time...might as well go for broke.

Anyway, I know Romeo and I know he's working hard. And I respect that he's willing to share his struggles here in the hopes of helping others as well as getting help for himself. That takes balls.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 28, 2011 9:34 pm 
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hellmuth1 wrote:
Welcome to the school of Hard Knocks.


I'd hate to live in your recovery world! It sounds masochistic. Do you whip yourself wherever you go?

Replace the needle for the whip. What a life.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 28, 2011 10:01 pm 
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I never said Romeo wasn't the man. I have extreme respect for him and all his posts. Romeo= The Man! I also never said a relapse brings you back to ground zero, but he is developing habbits/relapses that will prolong his recovery IMO. His brain need times to heal and every relapse hurts the healing the process to some degree and he is conditioning himself for a vicious cycle. Remember I am just one person first time through life posting my thoughts today and I don't think "Hey Romeo it's ok get back on the horse and try again statements help". Were talking about a life and death here, so if you think my comments are harsh, they are for the purpose of keeping Romeo clean and living.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 28, 2011 10:49 pm 
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Romeo wrote:
I've seen plenty of newcomers to this site who are on Suboxone and relapse, get back on Suboxone and relapse. Those folks are never urged to quit Suboxone and try Methadone or Abstinence based recovery, they're encouraged to get back on Suboxone and try again.

My question is this, why doesn't my Abstinence based recovery get the same respect that Suboxone treatment is given on this forum? Is it because I've relapsed a few times? If so, then why do the people who relapse while on Suboxone get treated differently than me? Shouldn't we be telling them that "I hope the next time you OD that you're alone?"

Baby Doll and Dannyb24k are two members I remember who were on Suboxone and continually relapsed, I don't remember anyone telling them to quit their chosen method of recovery, which was Suboxone and try Methadone or Abstinence based recovery.

All I ask is a little respect for my decision to go Abstinence based. After all, the third rule of this forum is to show respect for the decisions of others.

I am NOT mad at all with any of the responses I have got, I understand that if y'all didn't care about me, you wouldn't even post in this thread. I just ask the same respect be given my decision of Abstinence based recovery that is shown for recovery with Suboxone.


I can't believe I just read this after all this time.

I actually agree with everything you're saying Romeo. It also made me think of a couple of things. It would be fantastic if there was a 100% recovery based forum that didn't specialise in one "style", and all methods and tools, NA / Suboxone / methadone / SMART / Scientology / New Life etc co-existed with harmony. I'd be one of the first people on there.

Unfortunately though, there's a fair bit of competition between recovery methods out in the world at the moment, and it's totally unnecessary and counterproductive. Suboxone & methadone do get some "stick" from 12-step groups at times, as you know. This can make people on Suboxone defensive, as we often feel a lack of acceptance in the wider world, and a need to defend the idea that we're "not clean". You can see the same defensiveness in threads about Dr Drew and his view on Suboxone. Sometimes it can feel like we're fighting an uphill battle. The really dumb thing is, Suboxone isn't even a competing recovery method! It's a tool that should be able to co-exist with any other recovery method or pursuit, and a tool that can help people achieve complete abstinence, as you know.

This place, I've noticed, definitely flies the Suboxone banner, and defends it as a legitimate tool. It is suboxforum after all. I think that's fantastic.

You're right about respecting each other's recovery decisions. I think the reason you hear people support Suboxone is just because more people have experience with Suboxone based recovery, and they know it works. I wouldn't encourage someone to try a method I know little about. But I would try not to discourage either.

IMO you've chosen a more challenging, but potentially much more rewarding, choice in recovery. And that should be respected.

And stop calling them relapses!

Hellmuth, I know of a couple of people that died thanks to the old-school table thumping recovery style, so excuse me if it doesn't ring well. Do you hear doctors talking to critical patients like that? They don't because it doesn't work. It gives people heart attacks. I know you meant well, but this isn't the place for the old jail head 12-step table bashing.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 28, 2011 10:59 pm 
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IMO you've chosen a more challenging, but potentially much more rewarding, choice in recovery. And that should be respected. Agreed


Hellmuth, I know of a couple of people that died thanks to the old-school table thumping recovery style, so excuse me if it doesn't ring well. Do you hear doctors talking to critical patients like that? They don't because it doesn't work. It gives people heart attacks. I know you meant well, but this isn't the place for the old jail head 12-step table bashing. Disagree, 4 relapses? Obv the Romeo its ok approach isn't working, not saying my style is the cure either, but I just spoke what was on my mind, sry if I offended anyone. Just want everyone to live a happy life and I know relapses and addiction isn't part of that existence.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 1:25 am 
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hellmuth1 wrote:
Just want everyone to live a happy life and I know relapses and addiction isn't part of that existence.


Well telling people their recovery has failed doesn't make for a happy life at all.

Secondly, based on what he has told us, Romeo hasn't relapsed.

This is the most compelling definition I've seen of a slip vs a lapse vs a relapse.

Quote:

Understanding the Loss of Abstinence through a Banana Peel Metaphor

Slip and Slip Prevention:

Say, you are walking down the street and you see a banana peel. When you see the banana peel and realize its slippery potential, you might walk around it in order to avoid a slip. In this see-but-not-slip scenario, you are preventing a slip (Slip Prevention). If you hadn't been paying attention, you would have stepped on the banana peel and slipped - i.e. lost your balance...

Lapse and Lapse Prevention:

Say, you are walking down the street and you are not paying attention. So, you step on the banana peel and as a result you slip up - i.e. you lost your balance. Reflexively, you flail your hands and gyrate your torso so as to regain your balance.

And voila! - you did not fall even though you slipped. You regained the balance and prevented a fall. In this slip-but-not-fall scenario you prevented a lapse (i.e. a fall) (which constitutes Lapse Prevention).

Relapse and Relapse Prevention

Say, you are walking down the street and you are not paying attention. You step on the banana peel and slip up, i.e. lose your balance. You flail your hands and gyrate your torso - but to no avail. You are not able to regain your balance and you fall (i.e. lapse).

As you try to get back up on your feet, you might fall again (re-fall, re-lapse). The three reasons you might fall again while you are trying to get back up are a) you got too hurt and it is too painful to get back up, b) you lose your balance as you try to get up and fall back again, and c) you are feeling a little shaky and unsteady on your feet and as you have nothing to lean on or support yourself with you fall back down again.

If, however, you look around, mindfully size up what you need in order to safely get back on your feet, if, perhaps, you first calm down, maybe rest, and possibly ask for help to prop you up as you plan to steady yourself once back on your feet, you just might be able to prevent another fall (re-lapse) (which would constitute Re-Lapse Prevention).


Review: Slip vs. Lapse vs. Relapse

The Disease Model of substance use does not make a distinction between a lapse and a relapse.

In fact, a slip - a craving, a potentially transient loss of psycho-physiological balance - is synonymous with a relapse.

Lewis, Dana, and Blevin (1994), in their review of various prevention models, note that the Disease view of addiction "defines the client as either abstinent or relapsed" (p. 171).

This catastrophized, all-or-nothing view is based on the idea that "because it is so difficult to fight against the powerful and uncontrollable forces of the disease, the relapse is seen as a probable event" (Lewis et al, 1994, p. 171).

What a truly disempowering and dehumanizing prognosis this is, I have to say.

Abraham Twerski (the founder of the Gateway Rehabilitation Center) provides a vignette that has the beginning of the Banana Peel metaphor that had the promise of elucidating the distinctions between the slip, lapse, and relapse.

Unfortunately, his own experience of not being able to regain a loss of balance that led to a fall (see below) led to a conceptual denial of an important prevention U-turn opportunity to Twerski's clients.

Twerski (1997) writes that one day he had a package at the mail to pick up and since his car battery was dead he decided to walk to the post-office on a winter day. Twerski writes: "I tried to watch for slippery spots on the sidewalk, but, in spite of my caution, I slipped and fell hard" (p. 118). Twerski continues: "I knew that whether I fell because of the deceptive appearance of the sidewalk or my negligence, I was not going to get to the post office unless I got up and walked, pain and all."

In the next paragraph, Twerski continues: "In spite of my painful fall, I was two blocks closer to my destination than when I had started," and adds "This is how we can view relapse. Regardless of its pain, relapse is not a regression back to square one" (p. 118)



Recovery isn't always black and white, relapsed or clean. Nor is "clean time" is no measure of someone's wellness.

As long as a person is moving forward in their recovery, a relapse is not failure. Only Romeo truly knows whether his recovery is moving forward, and whether he survived a slip or a lapse, or a relapse, and whether it has affected his overall motivation. Many people come back from a relapse with renewed determination to stay clean. Despite "restarting their clean time" (which is no signifier of wellness anyway), many actually grow from the ordeal. And focusing on the loss rather than the gain only perpetuates a "relapse" mentality.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 4:37 am 
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Thank you everyone for your replies and insights, I appreciate all the comments. Invariably, I've learned at least a little something from all the comments.

Tear, I LOVE the slip-lapse-relapse thing-a-ma-bob. After reading it, I realized how I've been conditioned to fear a slip-lapse-relapse as an end of the world event, then I instinctively try to hide that event because of the shame and guilt associated with it......FUCK THAT NOISE!!!!

Yeah, I slipped, I fucked up, I had a momentary lapse of reason and I'm tired of feeling like a complete fucking idiot because I slipped up.

Here's the truth too, this pattern of slips I'm showing while quitting opiates is the exact same pattern I exhibited when I quit cocaine. I had forgot all about that, my wife reminded me of that the other day. I would get some time under my belt, then I'd go hit the blow because I forgot the pain associated with it. I repeated that cycle several times and as of today, I haven't used cocaine in years and years and years. It seems to be my pattern of quitting?? During early recovery, I need those reminders of the pain of taking the drug again. After a while, the memory of the pain sets up in my head where I don't need those "external" reminders.

I know that slips-lapses-relapses on opiates can be quite dangerous, deadly in fact and I am in NO way advocating for ANYONE to go out and slip up, or worse. This is MY path of recovery folks. It's a long ass, twisted, up and down path, but it's mine and I'm definitely further ahead today than I was yesterday and that's the important part.

BTW, my clean date in my heart is June 4th of 2010, the day I quit Suboxone. It is and will remain my clean date because it is the first time, in my adult life, that I was able to not use drugs for longer than 24 hours. It was on that date that I decided to enter into sobriety and to truly try to live my life wihout any kind of narcotic.....that's why that date is so important to me.....it represents a fundamental shift in my thinking and I will never, ever forget it!!

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:47 am 
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Romeo wrote:
It's a long ass, twisted, up and down path, but it's mine and I'm definitely further ahead today than I was yesterday and that's the important part.


Life in a nutshell. :)


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:50 am 
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Romeo - I'm curious, are you still seeing your addiction counselor? I thought I recalled you saying you were going to go back to him/her. Did you?

Also, did you ever go out and pick up at least one of those addiction workbooks so that you can work on how to address your cravings and triggers?

You keep talking about how you want to learn from these "lapses", and you talk and talk about it, but I don't see you DOING anything. In the past you've admitted that you didn't want to actively take part in your recovery, or something like that. You admitted you weren't ready to work hard enough - again, something like that. I'm not quoting you, it's just that I seem to recall you saying something like that.

Personally, I think that with this continued pattern of "lapses", it is indicative that you NEED to start to work on something HARDER. Hell, Romeo, at least go out and get one of those fucking work books! What is holding you back from just doing something that simple?? All you have to do is some reading and a few exercises - exercises that might save you from your next "lapse". Don't you want to prevent that? Or do you?

Put your money where your mouth is, so to speak.

I'm not trying to be mean, I hope you know that. But this pattern you are illustrating is getting more dangerous all the time.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 8:10 am 
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The main thing I'd be concerned about it that the relapses seem to be happening closer together. It was about one month between the last two lapses. That is something really worth watching, because if you're not careful, increasing part-time lapses can become full-time using.

I've heard Romeo say he's attending NA meetings, reading his basic text and talking to his sponsor regularly, so there's a lot of effort going in. Hatmaker is right in saying it's time to start doing more, even looking outside NA for some new tools.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:01 am 
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Tear, thanks for that slip-lapse-relapse thing. I think that going back to day 1 thing is part of what ultimately led me to leave NA years ago. Every time I smoked a little weed or drank a glass of champagne at a wedding, I would have to start the clock again at day one and get a white keychain. In the meantime I had days, weeks, months even a year without using drugs for the first time since I was 14. I was really changing. I was dealing with life and problems without automatically picking something up. But I was a perpetual newcomer, couldn't be a key holder, etc. even though I was living a clean honest life and was working the steps.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:45 am 
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Hey Hat, I hear ya. What I don't speak of much is the work I'm doing associated with NA. I still go to meetings most every night. I probably hit 5 meetings a week. In conjunction with my step working guide, I read my Basic Text. The Step Working Guide is basically the 12 steps of NA broken out where each step has a series of questions ( 50 or 60 questions) that I'm supposed to answer. Once you get done with Step 1, you review it with your sponsor. Once you get done Step 2, you review it with your sponsor, etc.

I'm guessing that the step working guide is similar to one of those addiction workbooks that you speak of.

OK, so here's what hit me last night. This happened after a couple of friends PM'd me and were very honest with me. Ugh, I feel like I'm going to confession or something like that (yeah, I'm Catholic). OK, time to man up Romeo, let the truth out......grrrr......this is difficult......OK.....here goes. Looking back at all of my slips, they have ALL been caused by serious pain. Pain that I have inflicted on myself by acting dangerously. Slip #1, #2 and #4 were emotional pain caused by friendships that I got way too close too someone, way too quickly.......YIKES, here's the sucky part where I don't want to scare people away......all those friendships were with women. NO, it doesn't have anything to do with my stupid screen name, my screen name is just my dang middle name, I thought my my middle would be pretty unique where I wouldn't have to type a bunch of 1's and 0's everytime I logged in. Anyway, slip #3 was caused by physical pain, I decided, at 43 years old, to hop over the edge of our pool like a teenager would to go retrieve a beach ball, I broke my finger when I hit the ground and that was slip #3.

I remember very clearly, after my first slip, a good friend of mine telling me that I needed to establish boundaries in my friendships, but I didn't know what the heck they were talking about and I was too proud to ask for an explanation. Well, not long after that, another friend told me to establish boundaries in my friendships, once again, I didn't quite get what they were driving at, so I let it go. Finally, another person mentioned how I needed to establish boundaries in my friendships and by this point I was like, "whatever." I've been warned, 3 times by 3 different people who I respect greatly to get some boundaries in place in my friendships, but I chose not to understand what they were saying.

Well, it hit me last night. Boundaries in friendships are things you do to protect your health.....in my case, my mental health and my sobriety. Why I missed something so simple is beyond me.......no it's not, on some level i probably knew what I should be doing, but acting like I was was more fun!!!

The core of slip #1, #2 and #4 was ME putting myself into a position where I basically knew I was headed for trouble, but because it FELT good, I continued on. Is that addict behavior, or what??

The crazy thing is, I'm friends with a lot of women, it's a very specific personality type that gets me into trouble and I kinda knew about this issue going into slip #2 and #4, but didn't stop.......my addict thinking overrode my actions.

Uh Huh, it's time for me to pay a lot closer attention to the friends I make and WHY I make those friends. Getting a handle on this shit would have prevented slip #2 and #4.

BTW, the question was asked about my time between slips. The time frames are 9.5 months, 2 weeks, 105 days, 90 days.

So, to sum up, pain that I could have easily avoided has caused all of my slips. One the one hand, I feel pretty frickin' stupid for not listening to the advice of those who love me, one the other hand, I'm just glad I finally got the lesson. Gosh I'm stubborn.

Crap, this is gonna sound all mushy and stupid and crap, but I REALLY appreciate all of you on this forum so much. This forum contains some of the most awesome people I have ever met and I'm blessed to be a part of it.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 1:02 pm 
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No, Romeo, the Big Book is nothing like these workbooks that I've previously described to you. I'm suggesting these so seriously to you because even with all of your soul searching and learning you say these lapses have taught you, it's my opinion that you haven't changed any of your behaviors. In other words, I'm not hearing about any SPECIFIC NEW ACTIONS TAKEN ON YOUR PART TO PREVENT THESE RELAPSES FROM HAPPENING AGAIN! And I believe that's why they keep happening. You are not instituting any new plans or behaviors on your part. That's why I'm trying to get you to do something new, yet very simple. Just one little workbook that has the likelihood of helping you to identify your triggers and deal with them BEFORE they turn into a lapse/relapse (whatever you want to call it).

That's all I'm saying.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 1:27 pm 
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Oh, I thought the workbooks you were talking about were basically reprints of NA stuff, that's why I wasn't too interested. I've already got a bunch of the NA books and whatnot and I figured they were all the same?

I can get these workbooks at a Barnes and Noble type store??

BTW, you're right, to a degree, as far as my behaviors. I've changed some of them, but for the most part I've been in this kind of learning mode. I've been learning about recovery and I basically know what I SHOULD be doing, but actually doing it is another thing entirely.

Again, I think part of this is that I'm staring at an elephant, it's my job to eat him, but the task seems so frickin' huge that I don't know where to start. I've taken bites here and there, but then the scope of the job sits in again and I get frustrated and say eff it and go back to what I know best, being me.

Hatmaker, you're getting under my skin and if you keep it up, I may just go eat that elephant to shut you up!!! LOL

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This is rather complicated and certainly above my knowledge and abilities to "fix". I've "known" Romeo for just about as long as I've been stopping by this place but there is simply no way that I could ever know everything there is to know. Even if I did have the information and the experience and ability to provide direction, can that really be done over the Internet? So, as I say, it's rather complicated. That said, several things really jump out at me, the biggest one being the resistance to using Suboxone again. I guess I just don't get that. Do you want to be free of opiates? Is that the major, number one goal? Or is the goal to be free of opiates without using Suboxone or by doing it "your way"? Because it really seems to me that you have wanted to do it "your way" for a long time now. To that I have to ask, "How is that working out for you?" I don't want to be harsh - just snap you back to reality here. I have read about you deciding to try naltrexone - not from a doctor but by ordering it over the Internet. You then wanted to "test" the naltrexone by taking opiates to see what would happen - as if all of the FDA testing to bring the drug to market was not good enough for you. You ordered Clonidine over the Internet rather than get it from your doctor. I see a lot of someone trying to treat his addiction his own way.

What I don't know is, did Suboxone work for you in the past? Did you relapse like this when you were on Suboxone? Because the thing is, if you didn't... if Suboxone kept you from relapsing or slipping or whatever, why would you not go back to it? I agree with you that we should "honor" your choice of treatment. However, should we still honor it if it's not working? That's the problem. It would be great if you were not having all of these problems without the Suboxone. I'd then say, great, man! Good for you. But that's not the case. Yeah, you've gotten clean (your words - certainly not mine) after stopping Suboxone, but how many relapses come with that "being clean" of Suboxone? What happens to other people really does not matter. Just because others have relapsed while they were on Sub does not mean that you did or that you will.

I can't tell you how much I admire you for coming here and being honest about all of this. That is so awesome of you to do - to put yourself out there and subject yourself to review by everyone out here. Many people would not do it and would actually do what you considered - just keep your mouth shut about what has happened. That is huge of you to do. I'm just concerned that you are missing the whole point of the "game". To me, the whole point of all of this is to not abuse opiates. That's the goal. Somehow you seem to have changed the goal to be not abuse opiates while not utilizing Suboxone to do it. Again, I have to ask, how is that working out for you? Now, if you had these same problems while on Suboxone, then clearly you do need to keep searching. If not, why would you not do what works? Whatever that is. Hell if dancing in your underwear on your front lawn kept you off of opiates 100%, I'd say DO IT. Whatever works!!! I just don't get having to stay clean "your way" or without Sub. Regardless, what you ARE doing clearly does not seem to be working - so good Lord, please don't keep doing it and expecting different results. Whatever you are doing needs to be changed. Obviously I think that change needs to be back to Sub. If not, you need to change something - perhaps the books Hat talks about, perhaps seeing a new councilor, perhaps trying a new treatment program. I wish I knew what would work for you. All I do know is if what you are doing is not working, you can't just keep doing it. Once you find what works, KEEP DOING IT - no matter what it is. If it works, then it works - that includes taking Suboxone. I'm not saying you have to like it, just do it.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 6:58 pm 
Hey Romeo! I can't tell you enough how your honesty inspires me! In my opinion, honesty itself is one of the biggest keys to a healthy meaningful recovery! And you strive for that continually....I think it's wonderful and speaks volumes about who you are and what you stand for! So thank you for that!
Tearjerker....Your post about the question of the slip, lapse, relapse terminology was fantastic! I think somewhere in this thread of Romeo's, I mentioned this very thing....how I question the semantics involved in this stuff. Your explanation rung of so much truth for me. I loved it! Thanks for sharing it! I also feel that your insights into this subject are right on the money!
Romeo...I'm pretty sure I was one of those three or four people who brought up the subject of setting boundaries within your relationships some time after your first lapse. I'm glad that it has started to make some sense for you. It's something I work on myself, too.
Hellmuth....I don't know you, so I hesitate to make a snap judgment. But I have to say that I think your replies to Romeo were a bit out of line. I agree with Tearjerker....I'd hate to live in your recovery world. To say or imply that all the work Romeo or anyone else has done in their recovery is eradicated, that all their sober time or all their days of abstinence are essentially worthless and that they're back at day one of recovery after a brief period of drug use, is so self-defeating, depressing and hopeless sounding that that alone would be more likely to lead one to relapse again, not strive harder to get back on their feet and get back into their recovery.
I also back Romeo 100% on his thoughts about not getting enough support and credit for working an abstinence-based recovery program. In my opinion, it's pretty damn easy to sit at the computer and tell someone who is struggling with abstinence-based recovery that they need to read this, go to this meeting or that, see a counselor and do some workbook or whatever, when their own brain is saturated with opiates (including buprenorphine) and in some cases, other drugs, whether it be legitmately prescribed benzos, muscle relaxers, psych drugs, or even illegal drugs like pot. Not to mention good old alcohol. In my opinion, until and unless you've walked in someone else's shoes, you can't possible completely 'get it' when it comes to grasping what it's like to truly be abstinent of ALL mind and mood alterting drugs. I know there are some who will take great offense to what I've just stated and that's okay. I don't say these things to offend anyone....just in an attempt to make a point that I feel is not addressed often at all. Yes, we are all addicts and we all 'get' that aspect. We all 'get' how difficult it is to recover. But as long as we're on bupe, we can't fully understand what Romeo or others like him are going through.
I also don't think that when we have a slip or a lapse, that telling someone "you'll be okay" or that "you're learning from each of these events" is detrimental. I mean, those of us who have tapered down to microgram doses of bupe or have gotten some time off bupe....we're in a different place than those who are on 4 or more milligrams of bupe a day. We just are. We don't have the benefit of being saturated with bupe....and that means that the real hardcore work really is just starting, in my opinion. Being on therapeutic doses of bupe is great....It gives us time to work through some of our issues, to find ways to identify triggers and so forth. But the real test doesn't fully start when we're still feeding ourselves a nice steady stream of opiate on a daily basis. For that reason, it's a lot harder for me to hear and appreciate fully the advice of someone who's not anywhere near where I am. Not that their wisdom is worthless....not at all. Anyone in addiction remission is learning and practicing things of value. But it just isn't the same, in my opinion.
To close, I just want to say again....Romeo, you're doing well, as far as I'm concerned. Perfection is not the goal. Learning to live life on life's terms is the goal, at least in my opinion. And that is what you are striving to do. At times, life just can feel like it's too much to bear. You obviously have your own personal sources of pain. They may be different than those of others. But for anyone, other than perhaps your wife or the dearest of close friends, to presume to know how best for you to work through them, is quite presumptuous in my opinion. Obviously, the way NOT to work through them is by turning to drugs....but you know that quite well. I think it's also presumptuous to feel that by reading your posts over the internet, that we somehow know that you're not DOING enough...that all you're doing is talking, talking, talking about doing stuff, while continuing to make the same mistakes and then blowing them off by saying your 'learning from your mistakes.'
You're a pretty smart, pretty highly-funtioning guy who is maintaining your professional life and your family life. You haven't done anything so egregious and stupid to jeopardize your life. I take your lapses very seriously and I worry about you....I absolutely do. And I hope that this will be your last mistake with drugs. But as I believe Lillyval suggested in a different thread, recovery is usually not a linear process. And as you said, for you it's a twisted, turning road with some bumps along the way. But you are moving forward. Sometimes you take a step back and you hate it, but you get honest with yourself and with us, and you turn it around as best you can. And I respect that....probably even more so because I get it, as my road is much like yours!
Just keep taking this seriously and keep trying to achieve that ultimate goal.....Get some more time under your belt with no drug use and you'll get there. I'm totally, always praying for you and rooting for you.
Thanks again to you and the others who posted some really good stuff in response to your update!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 8:59 pm 
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donh wrote:
This is rather complicated and certainly above my knowledge and abilities to "fix". I've "known" Romeo for just about as long as I've been stopping by this place but there is simply no way that I could ever know everything there is to know. Even if I did have the information and the experience and ability to provide direction, can that really be done over the Internet? So, as I say, it's rather complicated. That said, several things really jump out at me, the biggest one being the resistance to using Suboxone again. I guess I just don't get that. Do you want to be free of opiates?


When a person sets out to taper, their goal is to get off Suboxone, and stay off Suboxone. And there seems to be a lot of pressure in this thread for Romeo to give up on that goal the moment something goes wrong.

The majority of people use when attempting abstinence, most more than once. It's like a kid falling off their bike while. As long as they don't get any serious injuries, they get back on that bike and ride more carefully. But still they often fall.

Is it really our place to tell Romeo to give up on his goal and put his training wheels back on? Only Romeo can make that decision for himself. When I was trying abstinence, I hit a point where I was falling so much I started to do some damage. It was then I knew it was time to go back on Subox, heal and regroup, to try again another day.

Romeo's no dummy. I believe he'll know if & when he gets to the point of needing Suboxone again. Until then, it'd be better to encourage him to stay safe and keep learning.

donh wrote:
Do you want to be free of opiates?


Buprenorphine is an opioid.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:24 pm 
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I meant to include this in one of my last posts, but I forgot, so I'm just gonna shoot this out here real quick.

I do NOT hate Suboxone, not even close. I know that if it weren't for Suboxone, I would have NEVER had a chance at getting off pain meds. Suboxone enabled me to do something that I honestly never thought possible, it allowed me to try living drug free and I will always have great respect for Suboxone.

Next, I usually don't include MY time on Suboxone as clean time because I abused my Suboxone for the duration of my treatment. I never shot it or anything like that, but I always took more than I was supposed to, I always ran out of subs the day before my doctors appointment, I NEVER took my Suboxone and just forgot about it. I ALWAYS took it and I always waited for that little bump to hit me around the 38 minute mark.

On this forum, we usually refer to addiction as being active or not. Most would agree that when they're on Suboxone, they're not in active addiction anymore and I agree wholeheartedly with that. In my case, I was still in active addiction while on Suboxone, but I was not in destructive addiction. *sigh*, did that make sense??

Anyway, to those of you on Suboxone, please don't take offense to the terms I use while describing my addiction and my time on Suboxone. If I have offended you, please accept my apologies.

It's my opinion that the vast majority of people on Suboxone are clean.

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Be kind to yourself. Our character defects do NOT define who we are!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:01 pm 
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Whips are cool! I never asked any of you to live in my world, I simply said that Romeos relapses are ruining his journey through recovery and could end up in possible death. He can def do this and all he has to do is not take another drug for the rest of his life and keep doing the right thing each day, and he will know what the right thing is, judging from all his posts he has a huge heart. So no more drugs and keep plotting along doing the right thing each day. Building your recovery up one brick at a time. Is it hard? Hell yeah! Is it doable? I firmly believe FUCK YES. Patience. Each day he will be adding one more brick to his house of happiness if he just follows these 2 simple rules. 1. no more drugs ever again, no god damm excuses, man up! 2. Do the right thing (love and support your family, be kind to people, help others, just be the best person you can be and give back to society as much as you can) I am not saying you have to donate all your money or work for charity, but just do the right thing. Things will eventually fall into place, and if not, at least you can feel good about doing the right thing. Thats my recovery plan, I hope this helps someone out because this advice IMO is fucking gold!


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