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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 4:42 am 
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Something happened today and it was pretty strange for me.

I'd made arrangements to meet up with someone earlier this afternoon because I was a bit bored with study and wanted to get outta the house. I went downstairs picked up my car keys, then I thought ... nah ... put my keys down ... I thought Got nothing else to do ... picked up my keys started walking to the door, started pulling the handle ... then I thought nahhhh ... turned the handle back, stalled ... then went yeah opened the door, paused for half a minute then thought ... fuckit, closed the door, locked it started walking towards my car then half way down the drive I stopped dead in my tracks, turned around, took two steps towards the house then I stopped ... waited for a minute then thought ... nah fuckit ... turned back around went to my car ... Got to my car unlocked it, opened the door and stood there with the half open for about 3 minutes ... people were looking at me funny as they walked past but I didn't really notice or care ... then I think nahhh close my door then open it again, falter, then plonk my ass down and close the door ... I sit there for 10 minutes with my hand on the key in the ignition then realise I've left a guy waiting for me, turn the key, belt-up, drop the park brake, rev up and start lifting the clutch .... then I think nahhhhhh FUCK THAT ... park brake up ignition off get out run inside ... have my Suboxone, read a book. I'd spent at least 30 minutes in that ordeal.

After a lil while I get a phone call from my dealer asking where I am. I make up an excuse.

It's just weird for me ... It's incredibly rare for me to start to make movements to use and not go through with it. This might be the only time I made the right choice without there being some other person or event involved - ie a girlfriend watching over or a drug test the next day.

It's been a couple of months since I had a slip ... I noticed I was getting into a cycle of using about every 2 months, usually because I seem to get cravings around this time. To be honest, the last 2 weeks cravings have been building up. I feel em as an anxiety in my chest that's accompanied with using thoughts, and no matter how much I notice it and try to fight it, this feeling creeps in that using is somehow acceptable? I also get a bit cranky and cynical, and fuck the world. Dunno if people can relate.

I may be changing though, because that last time I slipped a couple of months ago ... I actually arranged to score and was at my dealers, when all of the sudden I thought "what am I doing?", turned around and went back to my car and was about to drive off until I saw an old using acquaintance turn up at the place, and that was enough to tip me back.

Some people might view this as a sign of weakness ... That I'm still getting cravings on sub is a sign of a weak recovery, and that's fair enough. Whatever. I'm kinda seeing progress. It's pretty much unknown for me to turn around when the wheels are in motion.


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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 8:05 am 
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thats incredible! usually when people get that far, they go through with it at any cost. just like viewing a glass half full or half empty, it is up to the individual. but really, all that matters is how YOU view it. i personally think it took alot of strength to walk away. umm, drive away!


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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 10:29 am 
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Hey TJ,

Congratulations on not using, I know the chaos that was swirling through your head as you were trying to do the right thing and it's not an easy task to unlock and unload yourself from an incident like that.....way to go.

In my experience, you're going to have to be extra careful in the minutes, hours and days following that near miss too. You got all revved up to use and sometimes it takes a little bit to really "come down" from being all revved up. It's like you woke the dragon up and it's going to take a little bit for that SOB to go back to sleep.

I understand your 2 month cycle of slips that you were getting too. I was on about a 3 month cycle for a while. I had many of the same thoughts and feelings that you mentioned as my drug use neared. IMO, those thoughts and feelings appeared because weeks prior, I had already opened the door to a relapse and it all just became part of the mechanism of a relapse for me.

After having been through a few relapses, I can now pick out those "feelings and thoughts" pretty quickly and come to terms with the fact that I may have opened the door to a relapse again and believe me, that door is a LOT easier to slam shut when you catch that shit early.

You already know this about me, but I'm gonna say it anyway.....I find talking out loud or writing about my "secret" thoughts helps to minimize their impact on me. It's like it gives the logical part of my brain a minute to evaluate what the hell I was considering doing AND by telling someone else what I was thinking of doing, it provides me with some accountability. I don't seem to quite have that accountability to myself to not use, not yet anyway.

Lastly, I also found when I first got into recovery that everything seemed so damn complicated. NA threw so much crap at me that it overwhelmed me and I was basically just sitting there paralyzed because I didn't really know where to start. I don't know too many people who have the recovery knowledge that you do and I honestly wonder if all that crap up in your head is just too much?? For me, the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) principle has been working pretty well for me so far.

I think you are changing and I wish you the best of luck in your continued pursuit of being clean.

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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 10:43 pm 
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WOW tear, great job!!!!!!!!!!!


seriously, Romeo nailed it. ONCE you've ya know, 'made arrangements' thats usually it..........its OVER, your gone in a flash.....


So, great job at 're-directing yourself!!!!!!!


Just wanted to drop you some encouraging words. I think you are improving :) :) :)
who cares what anybody else thinks

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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 2:42 am 
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wow tear-'. for the most part of what you wrote" i thought i was reading a faulty towers comic show :lol: Good Job

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PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 2:53 am 
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Romeo wrote:
In my experience, you're going to have to be extra careful in the minutes, hours and days following that near miss too. You got all revved up to use and sometimes it takes a little bit to really "come down" from being all revved up. It's like you woke the dragon up and it's going to take a little bit for that SOB to go back to sleep.


You are not wrong there ... I've had what felt like victories, ... then a couple of hours later thought "woohoo I've proven I don't have to use! Let's celebrate and get high". These challenging periods come in waves I've found ... usually last a few days.

So yeah it's an insidious beast this addiction thing.

Since yesterday though I haven't been too bad. Maybe there's been a niggling lil sensation when I look at my car but that's it. Except I'm left with this weird emptiness. I think it was the feeling I was trying to medicate. I keep thinking of things I can do and then thinking "nahhh that's boring", and even if I'm doing something interesting it isn't really fun? Everything seems a bit bland. Seems like I'm in a bit of a rutt and can't put my finger on what's missing...

Thank you everyone for your input ...


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:06 am 
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Thursday night of last week I lapsed on cocaine. IV cocaine to be exact.

It was like Romeo said. Two days before I had this episode where I nearly scored. The next day I felt okay. I almost felt like the challenge was over. The next day I was ...fine... I was driving home from meeting an old friend who was not a drug user, just an ex-partner who I hadn't seen for years and who was struggling in her own way. I was driving home, and I had an option to take the road through the "bad" part of town, or go around it. I chose to drive through the bad part. The moment I made that decision it was as if my heart was set on doing ...something... I hadn't had my Sub dose that night yet.

What ended up happening was a night of absolute chaos knocking around with some really messy coke-shooters who hadn't slept for many days. It was just chaos and ended up with me taking the guy's girlfriend for ransom because he'd run off with all our stuff. I went from having my shit together to complete old behaviour the moment that drug hit my brain. And I'm incredibly lucky not to end up in the cells or being stabbed with a dirty fit. It was just crazy.

I'm trying to figure out what made me want to do it. I think part of me missed the old chaos and excitement of that world even though I really hate it. But it was something more. Over the last couple of weeks I've been getting progressively depressed, and I've been using study as a distraction to push me through. I've kinda gotten in a rut of going to school doing work, studying, going to bed ... wake up and repeat. I haven't really wanted to see friends because the thought of doing anything I'd normally find interesting has seemed boring or depressing, which probably contributed to some kinda loneliness even though there are people in my life if I choose to contact them.

I do think that this new anti-depressant I've been on,which has been working wonders in my life and made me feel for the first time in years like my moods were ... "normal" ... I do think it'd started to poop-out, and lose its effectiveness gradually. I figured if I refused to believe it that it wouldn't happen, so I just immersed myself in more study to get by.

Since it's happened I've felt quite suicidal and been thinking of jumping in front of a train, which is probably why I've been going to NA meetings just for something. I haven't been going to school. Luckily I haven't had any clients thrown my way because I probably haven't been up to it. I kinda don't know what to do but I'm hoping things will get better. Maybe I will see my doc.

ANyway, that's where I've been.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 6:41 am 
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I feel gutted for you. I think you knew it was gonna happen. That's what I hate so much about this addiction thing. You can tell yourself until you are blue in the face that this is not gonna happen, but the addiction voice is always there nagging away at the back of your head. You came on here and posted about what had happened on Wednesday and then how you were feeling like you can get through and don't have to use. But underneath you really knew you would let it happen. I feel upset for you because I go through this all the time and I fucking hate it. Did you drive though the bad part of town on purpose? Knowing it'd lead to the inevitable? Some of you know that me and my husband are addicts struggling to stay clean. But I find I do things that ultimately are setting us up for the inevitable. And he does the same too. It's horrid. It's sneaky. So, anyway I just wanted u to know that I kind of get what happened to you. I hope you get through it. And when you figure out a way tell me about it so I can do the same. Good luck.
Ps I think I just realised truelly that I am powerless to this beast!


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:13 am 
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Babydoll wrote:
You came on here and posted about what had happened on Wednesday and then how you were feeling like you can get through and don't have to use. But underneath you really knew you would let it happen.


Hey BD.

I don't know if it was like that. On Tues I genuinely thought I'd fought it off and it would get easier. It's weird but when I wasn't on Sub, cravings would build up over a week, peak in intensity then go away. While I'm on Sub it's different. Cravings seem totally dependent on the level of Sub I have in my body. It's like my body's adjusted to being on 12mg again so I'm starting to get withdrawals before I have my next dose. It's in the later part of the day before my next dose that I start to get cravings.

I did take that way home I think because I wanted to use, because I hadn't had my Suboxone and it was late.

The big issue is that if I keep doing this using once every couple of months ... I am seriously never going to get off Sub. But at the same time being on Sub in a way makes it easier to get away with doing it once every couple of months, so it's a catch-22. SOMETHING has to change because I'm not going to taper off until I can at least prove to myself I can get 12 months without using.

Something else weird I noticed is that I normally stay on top of organising my stuff, on top of my study, work, cleanliness etc etc (now that I'm not using MOST of the time). After I used on Thursday, I realised that I'd totally let everything slip in the week leading up to it. My place was a mess, my clothes were dirty. Something was going on.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:23 am 
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Tear, i just re-read your last post - please don't be too hard on yourself. I do undersdtand when you say you feel suicidal etc. but look its happened. just have to make sure it does not keep happening. ie doesn't keep happening day in day out. and as far as i can surmise from your post it was just that one stupid evening. You are strong and be proud of the fact that most of the time you are better than this addiction and it doesn't have you using every day. I feel like a hypoctric saying this to you as i am not the best person at staying abstinent, but i just hate to read you sounding like you are a failure. just brush yourself off and keep going. God life does get boring and repetative and dull and the same day in and day out, But i would have that life than the life of chasing my next score day in and day out. keep stong and its ok that you have lapsed. its not the end of the world, and nothing to feel ashamed about. maybe you should speak to your doctor about your depression - you seem to have realised your were slipping downhill in that respect recently and it needs to be addressed. Lots of love C x x


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:32 am 
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you were posting at the same time as my last post. hope you get through it. c x


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:54 am 
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Thanks bd I'm on my phone now will be brief.

Don't really know why I've been getting like this except that some of the things I did and the person I became "on it" has left me a bit . It was no different to a usual night on the stimulants from back in the day but it's made me realize how much I traumatized myself as a person by doing all the things I used to do.

Thanks again bd for being understanding. I hope you are okay and staying strong. If you are struggling to get any stability are there rehabs where you are at that take people on sub and let you work their program on sub?


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 2:11 pm 
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Hey Tear - sorry you're going through a rough patch right now.

Reading through your posts, I remembered this article that I read some time ago:

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the ... more-drugs

The basic premise is that people of high intelligence tend to do more psychoactive drugs because they tend to seek out more novel experiences. Hmmm.

Many of my cravings are rooted in boredom, and depression is certainly an influence or an exacerbating factor in that boredom. If I am bored, that is one thing. If I am bored AND I'm looking at my options to alleiviate my boredom through the lens of my depression, ie nothing that usually interests me seems fun, then the guaranteed vacation from my head that drugs will provide seems almost destined.

So, boredom, yeah, it's a trigger. It helped me at some level to know that it's not uncommon and that to some extent it's a feature of many intelligent individuals. But how do you use that info to make a positive change?

I noticed that you said something about your inability to "fight cravings." Dude, me too. I cannot fight cravings. They are like any feeling for me - the harder I try to ignore or supress it, the more insistently it will make itself felt. I have to acknowlege my cravings with somewhat stupid self-talk (shit, I'm having cravings). I have to let the feeling rise in me and have to tell myself "this is a craving" (yes this sounds totally basic and dumb but for whatever reason it works). I have to sit and let myself be in the middle of that feeling and breathe through it but NOT ACT. I have to tell myself that it's a feeling and that in and of itself it can not hurt me; it just FEELS shitty. That's the hardest thing, not indulging the craving or suppressing/fighting it, but letting it be and exploring it, knowing that it will rise and that it will pass if I let it pass.

There is a part of me feeling the craving, and part of me observing myself feeling the craving and I have to identify more with the observer for this practice to work. I try to look upon my self and my struggle with kind eyes, with love. It takes practice, but it works.

I also noticed through your posts that looking back you can see that you were decompensating. You felt that your new medication wasn't working as well as it had been, you were slipping in your self-care habits, you were bored and empty, you were isolating and trying to lose yourself in your studies.

What can you do differently in the future to stop a chain of events earlier? Can you make it ok for yourself to ask for help before shit goes really wrong? Can you come up with strategies to help you cope in more effective ways? One of my first signs of my depression coming back is that I start to sleep too much and slack on personal appearance so I've given my husband permission to call me out on that. I don't like it, but it works. I also isolate myself, so I have certain people who I've asked to check in on me to make sure I'm not becoming a total recluse. Community is important, the sense of mutual responsibility to other people makes it harder to suffer alone.

Please don't jump in front of a train. You are awesome; you are one of my faveorite people here. I admire your unique way of looking at things and I know that if you keep at this, you will find the path that works for you.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 2:58 pm 
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Diary, that's some wonderful advice. I understand exactly what you mean about sitting with the cravings, identifying them, feeling them....you explained that very well.

Tj - I'm so sorry you're having a rough time. I think the above advice is the best I could ever offer myself. I can only add to try to have the confidence in yourself that you can do it.

Hang in there, my friend. I'm always wishing you the best.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:39 pm 
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TJ,

DoaQ gave you some stellar advice. She's the one who taught me a lot of the techniques that I use in my recovery.

Recently, I've been talking about how "centering" myself helps me so much. Part of centering myself includes doing exactly what DoaQ talked about, letting the craving come, experiencing it and then feeling it pass. That whole process of going through a craving used to throw me so far off center because I would get angry at it, I would fight it and sooner or later, that would cause me to use. Learning to go through the craving while being easy on yourself is kinda tricky at first.

Learning how to use my "compassionate observer" helps me to go through a craving while being mindful of keeping myself centered by being kind to myself and being patient with myself and loving myself. I know, I know, it all sounds pretty goofy, but it works.

Don't jump in front of a train, that's taking a permanent action to solve a temporary problem.

You yourself said you felt like you were changing and I think you are changing. This process of change you're going through may be difficult, but it's not impossible. Hang tough, man.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2012 3:52 pm 
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So...How are you doin TJ?

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 10:33 pm 
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Don't fret. You're not alone, I think it is normal to have frequent cravings, I certainly do. You must not entertain these thoughts or give in or have the "fuck-its". These are certainly troubling behaviors and I think your best bet is to be honest, open-up and talk to your Suboxone Doc. about the monkey on your back whispering lies into your ears.

I think we have some things in common, actually. I have cravings all the time and am on a very high-dose of Suboxone, so there's no option of moving up. Fortunately, I don't entertain these thoughts and have a list of things I've memorized to do to take my mind off of the craving. I know this seems easy to do but I know that it's not. I commonly struggle and generally have a relapse after months, not opioids but usually alcohol or maybe amphetamines. Not to say I'm better than any one else because I don't relapse on heroin or Oxycontin (anymore). I just don't even consider that an option even when relapsing. You're not alone and maybe you could benefit for a dosage adjustment if possible?

Keep your head up.



KeefSom


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