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PostPosted: Sun Sep 13, 2009 7:08 am 
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My VERY best friend can't accept she is an addict. She has no history of opiate addiction as far as I know. The last couple months(three) she has been snorting 30 mg of oxycodone, a couple times a day. She is a wonderful mother, and very good at hiding this. In the past month, I have found her doing up to 180 mg(snorting). The other week she went through wds(cold turkey) so her friends and family wouldn't know while she was in nyc...She swore she was done! done, done done!!well when she spent the night last night, she was kicking , agitated, runny nose, the whole deal. Suddenly I realized she was "opiate tolerant" again and addicted again, asking if i knew of anyone. Nope I will NOT enable her!. She had gone clean and is now back in full force.

She claims she can get clean on her own and I know she has once before, but as soon as she stopped opiates she started drinking(especially in nyc around her friends). Well. she never drinks. I told her she was drinking because she didn't have the opiates and finally got her to admitt: it helped her through the end of withdrawal etc

Luckily, one of her friends had told her about subutex, and she asked what I knew about the drug. She thinks that because she can kick for 3 days ...why would anyone prolong the wds. She admits to only feel "normal" when on opiates. She recently lost her dealer and i think she is scared that she exhausted her resources.

I'm trying to explain about maintenance, because this is something i know a great deal about, being that I have been on Methadone on and off for seven yrs and have been clean since then. She knows I know a good deal about addiction and never wants to talk about this disease. She still doesn't understand the power yet, because this is relatively new to her. She wonders why i feel "normal". This is when i tell her about maintenance and how it works. no cravings, feeling"normal" for an addict...just the ability to function. I will be on some thing indefinetly. She is slowly on the road to losing her part-time job. She just does not understand maintenance aspect and thinks methadone is dirty.(also she travels a lot and doesn't want to stand in a line everyday etc.)

This is where sub can help. I know she doesn't want methadone and wants privacy of a monthly script. I have a feeling when she runs out of OC , she will be much more receptive about listening to me, or research herself for that matter.
As soon as wds start she will vanish and come back "normal", but as I mentioned before her resources are exhausted ( to my knowledge). This will soon become a disaster and I don't know when is the best time to bring up maintenance. Should I let her find out she is addicted without telling her? Let her hit bottom? I can't do that. She has way too much to lose.

I love this person with all my heart and it is taking a chip away from mine slowly ever day. any thought or advice, anything would be much appreciated for I am sad and confused, clueless, helpless, and momentarily at a lose for words. this is my story..sorry if I rambled, but I am heartbroken. I need advice on when to and how to introduce the concept of main and bup. and I would love anyone if they have similar experiences to share. She is so stubborn and thinks bup is bad LOL....but not snorting OC?!! lol..ughhh,HELP. explaining the concept of maintenance is what i will have trouble doing.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 13, 2009 7:10 am 
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looking back i should have posted this in a different room.........sorry


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 13, 2009 8:47 am 
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indigochild wrote:
The other week she went through wds(cold turkey) so her friends and family wouldn't know while she was in nyc...She swore she was done! done, done done!!well when she spent the night last night, she was kicking , agitated, runny nose, the whole deal. Suddenly I realized she was "opiate tolerant" again and addicted again, asking if i knew of anyone. Nope I will NOT enable her!. She had gone clean and is now back in full force.


Are you sure this is the best way to help your friend? Being in withdrawals and having your cries for help fall on deaf ears because "they don't want to enable you" is pretty much one of the worst experiences one can go through. Tough love during withdrawals is definitely not guaranteed to solve an addiction. I know you're desperately trying to help here, but there's other ways to do it. An addiction is a very complex disease* and refusing someone their DOC will only bring resentment. You will only be reducing her tolerance because her addiction - her obsession to use the drug - will still be there, and the second she gets her hand on some OCs you can bet your ass she's gonna vacuum clean them with her nose.

* I'm using the term as a manner of speech - really don't want to go into discussions about whether addiction is truly a disease or not.

indigochild wrote:
She claims she can get clean on her own and I know she has once before, but as soon as she stopped opiates she started drinking(especially in nyc around her friends). Well. she never drinks. I told her she was drinking because she didn't have the opiates and finally got her to admitt: it helped her through the end of withdrawal etc


Just a small point on this one. Why is drinking such a problem? If it helps her with her withdrawal then it's all good. As long as she doesn't replace one addiction with another (ie. become an alcoholic), then three cheers to her. I find it's one of the worst ways to deal with wd's, but to each his own.

indigochild wrote:
Luckily, one of her friends had told her about subutex, and she asked what I knew about the drug. She thinks that because she can kick for 3 days ...why would anyone prolong the wds.


Well, in my opinion, she's partly right. Her habit seems to be a short one, and she probably could afford to tough out her cold turkey wd's. IF she can do that AND never use again, then it would be much better than going for long term maintenance since the latter will prolong her habit. Hovever, that's a pretty big if. Most people cannot stop their addictions in the earliest stages (when it is the easiest) since they think they've got a hang on it, and don't admit that they're addicts, as you quite rightly pointed out. They think that "hey I'll use for some time, then all I'll have to do is to weather out a couple of days of wd's and it will be as if I never used". The reality is that this pattern is repeated a couple of times, ending with a full blown addiction. The easier the wd's, the easier it is to keep using since you still think that "I can stop any time I like". The novice addict simply doesn't understand that he's already addicted and how hard it will be to get out of. People who've been addicts for quite some time know how hard it is, and for many people it's a one way street.

indigochild wrote:
This will soon become a disaster and I don't know when is the best time to bring up maintenance. Should I let her find out she is addicted without telling her? Let her hit bottom? I can't do that. She has way too much to lose.


I think you are right in proposing Suboxone to her. It will definitely help her feel normal and she could work on curing her addiction in the meantime (by going to meetings, counselling, etc). You should definitely NOT let her dig her hole and then going "I told you so" when things really get bad.

Make her understand that she ALREADY is addicted. Ask her whether she could stop using today without ill effects - if the answer is no, then she's physically dependent. Ask her whether she thinks she needs the drug (to feel normal, etc.) - if the answer is yes, then she's psychologically dependent. Ask her if she imagines the rest of her life without touching any opiates. Ask her any question to let her see that she's not as in control as she thinks she is. Explain to her that there are only two ways out: stopping OCs and never use again; or start suboxone maintenance and never use again. Tell her that chipping does not exist for her at this point and that once she's addicted, using only once after she's been clean is playing with fire.

If she's unconvinced about suboxone, point her to some websites about it*. Tell her that she'll feel normal all the time since bupe is an opiate. Tell her that she wouldn't need to chase a high, but will feel normal all day just by taking her dose in the morning. Tell her also about the blocking effects of suboxone - that she will be dissuaded from using OC because of it, and also because of the reduction/elimination of cravings thanks to suboxone. Tell her about all the benefits and then point her towards the liquid taper method discussed on this messageboard, to show her that if she takes things slowly after starting suboxone, she can stop without major wd's.

Hey man, in the end, you can only do so much. As the saying goes you can take a horse to the water... It is your friend who must make the decision. You can only try to enlighten her about addiction, how destructive it is, and how it already has its grip on her. Point her to suboxone as a way out - a way of feeling normal the whole day while you work to get your life back on track.

* Caution: there are a lot of anti-suboxone websites/message boards on the net. Steer clear of them. Opposing views are healthy - but not if they dissuade your friend from trying something which could save her career/life from addiction.

PS: thanks asshole, I've just spent half an hour trying to help some random stranger on the internet :lol: :lol: :lol:


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 Post subject: thank you
PostPosted: Sun Sep 13, 2009 10:39 am 
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stregol, pm sent
and thank you for taking the time for this a-hole LOL. u r truly selfless and an inspiration for me to give back and help others.
I will discuss some of this soon with her....very informative...I will keep you guys posted on this topic:)


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 Post subject: FINALLY GOING:)
PostPosted: Mon Sep 14, 2009 8:37 pm 
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tomorrow...........damn im happy> i hope everything works out. she exhausted her resources and can't cop anything so she is on board and wants therapy :D


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 1:40 am 
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So what happened?

My experience is you can suggest, but not force, and generally they won't do it till they are good and ready (see also: rock bottom or f***** up)


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2011 9:19 am 
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Wow, I don't know who this guy stregol is, or if he's even on these forums anymore, and I don't usually like to be so blunt but, but he sounded like a real horses ass. He sounded like either a real horse's ass of a person, or he sounded like a real in his reply.

Unless I'm missing something, I'm stunned he was never admonished or at least corrected on his foolish "advice"! I can relate to a knee-jerk (read: irrational) inclination to play devil's advocate, but some of the things said here just seem too ridiculous...

Example: he seriously called for the OP to reconsider whether her decision to NOT hooking her friend up with a new dealer "was the right thing to do"?!? :x

And as opposed to WHAT, exactly?? Saying "well, ok if you need it THAT badly.." Jesus!! :shock: While there was the addendum of: "but there are other ways.." he doesn't suggest or even mention a SINGLE "alternative strategy" (even if he HAD I doubt many would suggest or allow for the arranging of a more consistent availability of an addict's DOC)!

It upsets me even more since the whole point of this person's thread WAS to hear of alternative strategies!! :x

Well yeah stregol, whatever happened I'm (as I'm sure the many actually HAVE real insight as to the nature of addiction would agree) she's pretty damn sure it was the right thing to do, seeing as how the ONLY real chance her friend had of even THINKING about quitting was to run out of her DOC

I won't even get STARTED on the whole "what's wrong with drinking?" bit... But I WILL point out that, out of your multiple transparent attempts to hedge your arguments bets and seal its cracks it against possible criticism, makes even LESS sense than the rest.

"Oh what's the problem with medicating WD with alcohol??? As long as 'afterwards' she doesn't go back to using!" :roll:

First of all, you KNOW what happened "afterwards"! She already freaking TOLD you what happened- she ALREADY went back to using, didn't you catch the part where the OP said she never drinks and only did so to self-medicate immediate w/d symptoms?? o_O

Or did rush through it to get to the part where you critique the poster and the actions they took at their every turn without having "wasted" any time on actually COMPREHENDING this person's dilemma? -.-

Because according to you, if she HADN'T gone back to using, then turning to ALCOHOL to temporarily self-medicate sobriety and its discomforts would have been ok! This is akin to saying: "if he HADN'T been killed on his way home that night, it means his drinking to help him 'drive better' would have been ok!"

Again: :shock:

Not to mention, it SHOULD have been obvious to someone who OBVIOUSLY considers themselves a worthwhile source on addiction and recovery that the behaviors of the friend this person was describing were those of a full grow addict.

Sorry to bump an old thread like this guys, but reading it as a new member here for advice and info, I can't help but believe there will be others who do the same, and if this person's nonsense is still uncontended, they might mistake it for good advice.

I'm sorry if you still resent those around you for letting your "[ADDICTION'S] cries fall on [their] deaf ears". If that is your story, I hope you've let go of some of that resentment since the day you posted that. If not, I suggest now is the time to re-examine those feelings.

While like I said, I get you playing the devil's advocate here, I'm sorry to say that to me, you come off more like the :twisted:

No offense, I say that only in hopes that doing so might help persuade any impressionable addict who may come across this thread to see you- or rather, the advice you gave- that same way too.

Likewise I apologize for all the harsh things I've said here and I hope I haven't gotten myself in trouble over this, but I felt it more important to protect both new visitors to this forum AND the forum itself from any perceived endorsement of such potentially disastrous "mis-advice"...

/long rambling rant :oops: :P


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 Post subject: detaching...with love
PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2011 10:24 am 
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Hi Indigochild....

So sorry about your friend. It is such a powerless feeling to see this and not be able to do anything. this is where detaching with love comes in....you have tried to 'talk' to her...she's not ready...when we get sick and tired of doing what we do is when things will change, as you probably know, and sadly we can't force her to get there quicker. You can care and love her without having it take a "chip" out of your own life and recovery....you take care of you, continue to support and listen and remain nonjudgmental as you are doing and when she is ready she will come to you.

It's all we can do. Hopefully if she has exhausted her resources this will be her 'bottom'. It may not. She may find other ways...I remember a social worker who was married and had three kids in treatment with me....really a great woman...she was a chronic relapser and heroin was her DOC. she was clean in treatment for four months, got discharged and when i was being discharged she was coming back in....she had taken off and was prositituing to get heroin...it was so sad and scary. I remember thinking "I'd NEVER do such a thing"....well sadly for us its all "yets"....we don't know WHAT we'd do if we went back out...its something I think about all the time if I ever get a craving...which I don't hardly at all on Sub.

Take care of you...and continue to talk to her if you want...but if you find ourself exhausted or giving up what you know you need for recovery then just remember to detach again! Detaching doesn't mean you don't care, it means you care about yourself enough to keep that your priority...you can't help her if you're sick....

Hope things turn around for your friend...you sound like a great friend and she is lucky to have you.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2011 10:39 am 
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Indigochild:

The best thing you can do for your friend is to be there for her. Support ANY effort she makes to get clean or get on the right path. It is not a good thing to enable, but there is no need to be cruel about it. When put in a position of being asked to enable, respond by encouraging your friend to find a better way (i.e. get clean instead of find a new dealer, etc)

In my experience very few people who are pushed into recovery before they are ready do very well. It's just the nature of the beast, as they say. Everyone has a different "bottom" but I am a firm believer in the idea that recovery from addiction is only achieved when the addict hits bottom. And you can't force "the bottom" on someone. They have to find their way there themselves.

You're a good person for trying to help. Be a role model for her, and perhaps she'll get better.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2011 7:44 pm 
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is something wrong with my pc or the way I am signed in? Indigo child amd Stregol had this conversation back in 09 and looked like it was a done deal... but now seeing comments for this year?

Is there something wrong with the time line here? or am I missing something?


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2011 9:32 pm 
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No, birdie, you're seeing things right. This is a very old thread that someone brought back to life. It happens sometimes I guess.

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 Post subject: OMG...
PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2011 11:18 pm 
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I can't believe this thread I wrote in 09 is on top! LOL anyway, there is good news to this story. My friend eventually hit rock bottom after she came back from NY. She went on bupe but didn't take recovery seriously. She got cocky, jumped off bupe @ 16mg after 3 months of therepy. As soon as the WDs started kicking in, she started taking agonist. Things of course got worse! Three months later, she was begging the doc to take her back- he did and she has been on bupe maintaince till this day!:)She happens to be over tonight too! weird, how this old thread got pulled up?- but at least there is a happy ending and now she knows more about the disease of addiction and about long term therepy/maintainence. life is good today :D
BTW- I bought her JJs book on Guide to Bupe....i'm still trying to make her watch all his vlog...i'm making progress and she is too(obviously) but know understands how serious this is.


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 Post subject: thanks slartibartfast
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 4:04 am 
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for correcting all that drivel (I see know) from stegrol..i will make an effort to correct any mis-info in the future no matter how old the thread. I'm just glad everything turned out A OK and thanks for all the others that responded to this old thread. I'm glad I can give a happy ending :D It can be rare to hear a happy ending with this disease!


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 9:16 am 
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Thanks for the update, indigo. That's awesome news about your friend! I'm so glad she managed to lived through her active addicted safely until she got onto suboxone and took control of things. Good on her! You must be one hell of a friend to have supported her throughout all this. Good on you, too.

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