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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2018 5:35 pm 
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Hi everyone,

Most of you know my story I was on 8mg for 6 years, then decided to taper off. I went through a living hell I have never been through so much in my entire life. I didn't understand why, and when I heard people saying it was easy I thought they were lying to be honest. I made it off well I would say forced myself off after about 3 months of tapering. I was so tired.. mentally and physically it was a total nightmare. After about 2 and a half to 3 months after my jump I made the decision to go back on Subutex. My family thought I made the biggest mistake, but I had hope that by going back to a low dose I would suffer a lot less.

Anyways I went back on Subutex for the past 8 months I have been on 0.30 micrograms daily. The other day I thought to myself why don't I just give it a try, and go back if it doesn't work out. I have worked hard to overcome my addiction. I will admit that last time I got off I was highly addicted to subutex and in my opinion that is why the withdrawals are so bad. I worked hard all these months trying to only take the minimum, and changing my way of thinking. I am currently 4 days off of subutex, I have a very fast metabolism btw. At 24 hours I was able to sleep like a baby. Then, at 48 hours I did have restless legs but I was still able to sleep for about 3 hours. At 72 hours I slept like a baby for 7 hours, and had NO RESTLESS LEGS..NONE!!

To me that is amazing because last time I struggled horribly with restless legs. I feel good and this is the truth, only problem is a little sweating and yesterday my back hurt not bad though. I am not on any meds if your thinking I used a benzo to get off I didn't. The only thing I am taking is clonidine a tiny piece you can hardly even see. Because you can't take much clonidine or your blood pressure will get too low. This is the truth and anyone that remembers me on here knows that I speak the truth. I am going to work, and I feel really good. I am in shock that it is true that you can get off with almost no withdrawals I never believed it before until now.

The best advice I can give is do a slow taper, I know it sucks but its worth it. Oh and I don't believe that it matters how much your taking once you get below 1mg. I think it's whether your still mentally addicted to it, I know this from my personal experience. And just in case someone has something to say about that this is my experience not everyone else's. It is different for everyone obviously. But I believe once you are under 1mg take your time stick at that dose for a few months then jump. Give your body time to recover before you make your jump its all worth it.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2018 6:31 pm 
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subtaperingnow wrote:
Hi everyone,

Most of you know my story I was on 8mg for 6 years, then decided to taper off. I went through a living hell I have never been through so much in my entire life. I didn't understand why, and when I heard people saying it was easy I thought they were lying to be honest. I made it off well I would say forced myself off after about 3 months of tapering. I was so tired.. mentally and physically it was a total nightmare. After about 2 and a half to 3 months after my jump I made the decision to go back on Subutex. My family thought I made the biggest mistake, but I had hope that by going back to a low dose I would suffer a lot less.

Anyways I went back on Subutex for the past 8 months I have been on 0.30 micrograms daily. The other day I thought to myself why don't I just give it a try, and go back if it doesn't work out. I have worked hard to overcome my addiction. I will admit that last time I got off I was highly addicted to subutex and in my opinion that is why the withdrawals are so bad. I worked hard all these months trying to only take the minimum, and changing my way of thinking. I am currently 4 days off of subutex, I have a very fast metabolism btw. At 24 hours I was able to sleep like a baby. Then, at 48 hours I did have restless legs but I was still able to sleep for about 3 hours. At 72 hours I slept like a baby for 7 hours, and had NO RESTLESS LEGS..NONE!!

To me that is amazing because last time I struggled horribly with restless legs. I feel good and this is the truth, only problem is a little sweating and yesterday my back hurt not bad though. I am not on any meds if your thinking I used a benzo to get off I didn't. The only thing I am taking is clonidine a tiny piece you can hardly even see. Because you can't take much clonidine or your blood pressure will get too low. This is the truth and anyone that remembers me on here knows that I speak the truth. I am going to work, and I feel really good. I am in shock that it is true that you can get off with almost no withdrawals I never believed it before until now.

The best advice I can give is do a slow taper, I know it sucks but its worth it. Oh and I don't believe that it matters how much your taking once you get below 1mg. I think it's whether your still mentally addicted to it, I know this from my personal experience. And just in case someone has something to say about that this is my experience not everyone else's. It is different for everyone obviously. But I believe once you are under 1mg take your time stick at that dose for a few months then jump. Give your body time to recover before you make your jump its all worth it.



Wow! Congrats to you and thanks for sharing!

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2018 12:14 am 
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We all love reading stories like yours. It gives those few members who are so very afraid of withdrawals some real hope of getting off it, that is, if they want.

Congratulations on your success and I hope it sticks long term. Always remember you're an addict and only a pill away from heading down that dark road. Like AA says, "One Day at a Time".

Thanks for posting!

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2018 10:04 am 
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Subtaperingnow! (Ur still in my autocorrect and I got a new phone lol).

I’m so happy for u and I’ve thought of u from time to time. I remember ur struggles and I’ve been pulling for u to have the outcome u wanted. U did it smart and showed true patience. I think ppl get confused with slow and steady tapering..... it literally takes s-l-o-w tapering. I’ve read ppl talk about how slow they tapered and come to find out they were just talking about a couple months, it takes plenty of patience and u did it.

I’m so glad u came bk to post ur story and since ur 4 days in, I hope u keep coming bk occasionally to update us. That would be awesome because it’s extremely important for others to know about ur journey :)

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2018 7:42 pm 
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It is definitely a journey Jenn, and you were there for me through it the last time. Yea a slow taper not 3 months like I did.. I think tapering as low as possible, then staying at the same dose for a couple of months is the best way to do it. I stayed at 0.30 for 8 months I did not drop the dose at all. I jumped from that with little issues, so I believe it's whether your mind and body are able to produce neurotransmitters on its own.

I am currently half way through day 6. When I posted I was already done with day 4 and half way into day 5. My last dose was Sunday morning at about 7am, so I would be half way through day 6 right now. I slept good last night, and the only problem is sweating. I keep thinking the restless legs are gonna come back, but at the 6th day I think I'm good. I had them for one night and that was on the 2nd night. I didn't make a big deal out of it either I just gave it a try, I think having fear will destroy your success on getting off of Bupe.

I feel calm no anxiety and at peace with the process. I do have gabapentin here from last year, but never needed it. I only take what I need to, and that is the mindset you need to have. The addiction side would say you need it all.. but we don't and I did the same thing last year I only took what I needed, but I still went through a lot because my body wasn't ready. I do want everyone to know that I have been on subutex, and only subutex for all these years. I never did any other drug nor do I drink.

I have lived a straight life for years, but with subutex I felt the need to take it for energy. That was the problem I was addicted to it. This time I honestly didn't even want to take it, because I didn't feel better when I took it.. that proves that most of the withdrawals are in your head it's 90% mental. But that is just my experience from the process. And I said most of the withdrawals not all because your body does become accustomed to it.

Thank you for this wonderful website, I know it has helped many and helped me when I was struggling and needed support from others that understood.


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PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2018 6:57 pm 
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2 weeks off :)

Not much to say really, I am doing great. Only problem I have had is lower back pain, and it's more annoying than anything. If I'm up moving around it seems to get better. It starts early in the day when I get up for work, and gets better thru the day. To me that is absolutely nothing though, compared to the pain I endored last year while tapering.

I'm off of bupe and doing good mentally and physically, I worked really hard to get to this point. Patience is the key, and it's hard to have patience during this process especially when tapering. But that was the only choice I had either suffer, and keep suffering or do it right and not suffer. If you think you can get this done quick think again, you will be back on bupe if not back on drugs. This is no joke you can not cheat your way out.

I have absolutely no cravings at all nothing.. I just feel normal in a good way. Oh and no restless legs baby I only had them on the 2nd night that was it and it wasn't even bad.

Have a wonderful day everyone!


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PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2018 10:01 am 
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Congrats on your journey!!!

I would like to know how the heck you managed to get a dose of .3 MICROGRAMS ?!?!?? LOL I would LOVE to eventually be able to get down that low before getting off completely but I am a little confused on to how it would be done.. Aren't the subutex in tablet pill form? Do you crush the pill into powder and then take one tiny grain of powder from a crushed pill? Im so confused LOL

Sorry if you stated this elsewhere, When I read the "Microgram" part I was like WHATTT?!??? 0.0003 mgs?!??? :lol:

Nonetheless, You are AWESOME!!!!!!

Jessica

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PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2018 7:38 pm 
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No, I didn't crush it into powder or anything like that. I just broke them up, obviously if you have the small ones you couldn't do it. But I just broke them up into 4, then 8 and so on. I might have been off by a tiny bit, but not by much I had the size pretty much memorized. If I accidently took too much off I would spit a little out.

When you do taper off DONT give yourself a strict schedule.. it is not worth suffering then ending up back at square one. If you are having a hard time tapering down stay at the same dose as long as you need to. The longer you taper the more likely you are to recover. Once you can get yourself into the micrograms I would stick at that dose like I did until you feel ready.

In my opinion once you get into the micrograms it doesn't matter what dose you jump from what matters is whether your body can produce its own neurotransmitters. Last time I jumped from half of what I just jumped from, and suffered horribly the suffering never ended and only got worse. I ended up back on bupe, because I couldn't take much more. I went too quick not realizing I would suffer months after I jumped.. like I said the PAWS only got worse NOT better! I wish I knew what I know now last year I could have saved myself from pure hell.

Anyways thanks, and I hope this helps you if you do it right and not give yourself a strict schedule you will make it off with minimal withdrawals.


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PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2018 11:32 pm 
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subtaperingnow wrote:
Hi everyone,

Most of you know my story I was on 8mg for 6 years, then decided to taper off. I went through a living hell I have never been through so much in my entire life. I didn't understand why, and when I heard people saying it was easy I thought they were lying to be honest. I made it off well I would say forced myself off after about 3 months of tapering. I was so tired.. mentally and physically it was a total nightmare. After about 2 and a half to 3 months after my jump I made the decision to go back on Subutex. My family thought I made the biggest mistake, but I had hope that by going back to a low dose I would suffer a lot less.

Anyways I went back on Subutex for the past 8 months I have been on 0.30 micrograms daily. The other day I thought to myself why don't I just give it a try, and go back if it doesn't work out. I have worked hard to overcome my addiction. I will admit that last time I got off I was highly addicted to subutex and in my opinion that is why the withdrawals are so bad. I worked hard all these months trying to only take the minimum, and changing my way of thinking. I am currently 4 days off of subutex, I have a very fast metabolism btw. At 24 hours I was able to sleep like a baby. Then, at 48 hours I did have restless legs but I was still able to sleep for about 3 hours. At 72 hours I slept like a baby for 7 hours, and had NO RESTLESS LEGS..NONE!!

To me that is amazing because last time I struggled horribly with restless legs. I feel good and this is the truth, only problem is a little sweating and yesterday my back hurt not bad though. I am not on any meds if your thinking I used a benzo to get off I didn't. The only thing I am taking is clonidine a tiny piece you can hardly even see. Because you can't take much clonidine or your blood pressure will get too low. This is the truth and anyone that remembers me on here knows that I speak the truth. I am going to work, and I feel really good. I am in shock that it is true that you can get off with almost no withdrawals I never believed it before until now.

The best advice I can give is do a slow taper, I know it sucks but its worth it. Oh and I don't believe that it matters how much your taking once you get below 1mg. I think it's whether your still mentally addicted to it, I know this from my personal experience. And just in case someone has something to say about that this is my experience not everyone else's. It is different for everyone obviously. But I believe once you are under 1mg take your time stick at that dose for a few months then jump. Give your body time to recover before you make your jump its all worth it.



Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes! (I am channeling Stephon from Saturday Night Live :lol: )

Sometimes I don't understand how we can miss this. Opioid addiction has a huge mental component. Think back to when you were in heavy withdrawal and how depressed you felt. That feeling that life is over without our drug of choice. Buprenorphine blunts that feeling, taking away both the active withdrawal and the cravings. But why would anyone think that they won't eventually have to face that?

How would an opioid addict get better without addressing the mental aspect? But if they haven't and they go to taper off buprenorphine, suddenly it's the medication's fault. It's the fault of the doctor who put them on the drug. NO! It's what addiction is! There's a physical component and a mental component!

You get it subtapering! You were forced to realize that you needed to address the mental to make it through the physical.

This is the reason we are always talking about the necessity of working on recovery. We don't want to see the people who come here and talk about how insanely difficult it is to get off buprenorphine. Because most of the time these are the same people who haven't worked on the mental part of addiction. They think they will be on buprenorphine for a certain amount of time, never doing much in recovery work, and expect both their taper and life afterward to be a piece of cake. Not likely!

Addiction will catch up with you somewhere if you don't do the work.

Amy

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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2018 7:17 pm 
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Amy,

I didn't think I needed to work on anything when I was tapering last year. But, I was totally wrong and it took me a while to even realize it. When you don't work on the mental aspect of it, you end up going in circles. This is why most end up back on drugs, or worse. When I went back on Bupe my family kept saying why would you go back when your already off.. they thought that if I went back on it I would never get back off.

That wasn't the case tho, I went back on to work on myself. Now, they finally understand why and can see how great I'm doing. My mother was by my side last year so she knows what I went thru, and even she is shocked that I didn't really go thru withdrawals this time. It's the addiction side that makes the withdrawals so bad, not suboxone and I'm glad I finally know this. It took me awhile but I figured it out, and I appreciate the help along the way.

Everything you guys said was the truth. You can not recover without doing the work. And the mental part is worse than the physical because for me the mental part only got worse over time whereas the physical had gotten better.


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PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2018 11:14 pm 
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I am beyond happy for you, subtaperingnow! The fact that your family is finally understanding your journey and your process is so helpful. I know that it can feel lonely when your people doubt you and don't fully support you. My sister and my husband, it seems, don't really want to understand. Or maybe for them it's just another way that I don't measure up. Anyway...

As you know, your success doesn't mean that you never have to think of your addiction again, but it certainly means that you have given yourself tools that work for you and that you can rely on.

Would you mind sharing some of the ways that you tackled the mental aspect of your addiction? You are in a great position to be really helpful to others here who may be struggling.

We are so glad that you came back to tell us about your continuing journey! You've made breakthroughs that many others who come here don't know they have to make. You are a good example for so many people.

Amy

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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2018 9:01 am 
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This is a life long battle, so of course it's something I will always have to work on. I changed my way of thinking. Before, I thought bupe gave me energy in reality it didn't. That was really difficult to overcome, because once you train your brain to think a certain way it takes a lot of time and consistency to change it. I also tried to figure out what the root cause of my addiction was.

I just never felt good enough, and would always go above and beyond to be the best at everything. I realize now that I am good enough, and if not for everyone else atleast for myself. I stuck at the same dose while trying to work on myself not putting pressure on myself to get off of bupe, but to take that time to change. You have to find happiness, and no one is always happy. But, to feel content with life is where you need to be.

I look around at everything I have built, and I am proud of myself I don't look at what I don't have I look at what I do. I bought a house I have a beautiful healthy family, and I have a great job. I understand if things are falling apart in life, it is hard to overcome an addiction. This is why most need a positive environment, things to look forward to. Looking at life differently not the glass half empty but half full.

Use suboxone as a tool if you are tapering off take your time look at the cause of your addiction, and it is imperative to be content and find happiness in life without a pill!! If I knew this before, I would have never jumped off suboxone after only 3 months of tapering. But, I guess I had to experience it all myself. I hope this can help people out there that are struggling. Do not listen to your family, only you know what's best for you.

Trust me it's not worth going through what I did, use suboxone as tool to recover mentally from your addiction!!!


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PostPosted: Thu May 10, 2018 10:15 am 
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Sorry if you said it before, but can I just ask what possessed you to jump off after only 3 months of tapering when you had been on it for 6 years?? If you were on it for 6 years you must have known that would not be a good idea?? Did you do any recovery work in the 6 years you were on initially or were you just coasting by? From what I read on your posts it seems like you didnt realize you needed to change until after you had jumped off the first time?

I am happy that you see the error in your past ways as I feel that learning from our own mistakes is the best way we can improve ourselves. You said you were "addicted" to suboxone. I just want to clarify if you meant you were actually "addicted" by 'thinking it gave you energy' or just "physically dependent" ? I think this is a huge issue for people on suboxone who are still struggling in their recovery.

So many people take extra subs when they are stressed or 'want some relief', only to find that it didn't do anything and it is only feeding the addictive nature inside of us. Many of us on suboxone still need to learn how to cope with negative feelings without looking for a substance to make us feel better. This is exactly why I will never allow myself to drink alcohol or smoke weed ever again. In my own personal opinion, that is just feeding the beast! As addicts, we have to learn that we will NEVER be satisfied! We will ALWAYS want more and more and more (and more and more.....). Once you realize this and stop searching for a "quick fix", you can begin to recover. There are no shortcuts.

I think it is amazing that you had a dose of reality slap you in the face to get you to open your eyes on how to truly recover and live life without suboxone. I think your story will really help those who have the same thought process as you previously did.

Please keep posting with updates of your withdrawl and how you are getting through it! It is very inspiring and will help so many people wanting to get off successfully!
Jessica

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PostPosted: Fri May 11, 2018 4:23 pm 
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Jessica,

I lacked patience before, I just wanted to be off. Plus, I was suffering worse while tapering so I just decided the best thing to do is jump. Really what I should have done was slowly go down over time. It is different for everyone one person can taper down and have little issues while others suffer horribly. And I'm gonna be completely honest I pretty much just coasted by before.

Suboxone was just my drug that kept me stable really, but all it was to me was a drug. I was able to feel decently good legally.. I was addicted to it. Although I couldn't admit that before, I will admit it now. I used suboxone to cope with the negative things in life, instead of learning how to deal with it. I look back now at how ridiculous it is and how it was all in my head..

Almost anyone can make it through withdrawals physically, but most including myself can't make it through the mental aspect of it unless you have already done the work to recover. If people think they can get off without the work they will and mark my words WILL be back on suboxone if not back on drugs!


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PostPosted: Sat May 12, 2018 12:11 pm 
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Congrats again subtaperingnow. The only disagreement I have with your last statement is you saying you were addicted to the Suboxone to help cope with feelings. It may only be a word but let's call it as it is, a dependency, not an addiction. Look up both words and you'll probably agree. Unless of course you were taking vast amounts of Suboxone over the prescribed amount without the ability to stop or lessen the dose. Then it would be addiction. I know it sounds like a little thing, a word. But words are powerful and we don't want people thinking Suboxone is an addicting drug, which it isn't. We use it as a transition to a better life w/o addictive behavior running our life. It allows us to live normally with just taking a daily dose to maintain it. Okay, you get my point. Thank You.

Something else I'd like to point out is you said everyone is different and that is spot on. One member here stopped taking Suboxone by not just tapering down but at the end only taking a small amount when they felt w/d's coming on. After awhile they got less and less and she just stopped taking it like you with barely any discomfort at all. So yes, it can be done a few different ways. Glad you found one that worked.

Keep posting your progress.

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PostPosted: Sat May 12, 2018 6:54 pm 
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How are you measuring micrograms?
That’s a millionth of a gram.


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PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2018 12:23 pm 
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Rule, I think what subtaperingnow is saying, and please correct me if I'm wrong, is that he still was psychologically addicted to the suboxone. Some people, when they taper off buprenorphine, are not still psychologically addicted. They have gotten to the point that they are just physically dependent on buprenorphine, like you said. Dependent.

There is another large group, however, that maybe thinks that they can just go on suboxone for a while and that it will cure their addiction without them having to deal with the psychological components of addiction. We know this group by their resistance to advice, their blame of the medication, their extreme difficulty with the tapering process. They are often the "squeaky wheel" of the forum and we spend a lot of our time as moderators dealing with them.

Subtapering was one of them, although certainly not among the worst, the first time he tried tapering and jumping. The reason it was so difficult for him, he acknowledges, is because he didn't do the recovery work. He wanted to just skate by without putting in any real effort. This second time, the taper is working well for him because he faced up to the psychological component of addiction and worked on that.

Those of us who got on suboxone super ready for recovery, sometimes we are already there, ready to break the psychological aspect of opioid abuse as well as the physical. But some people need to work on that still or they will have much more trouble tapering and stepping off buprenorphine.

Subtapering was not addicted to suboxone because suboxone is addictive. He was addicted to suboxone because he hadn't done the work necessary to break his psychological need for opioids. Yes, most of us are simply dependent on the buprenorphine. But there is a group who still needs to do some work to change their psychological addiction to simple dependency.

Does that make sense?

Amy

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PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2018 12:46 pm 
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I agree with you Amy and know many people that take more than their prescribed dose to "feel" something, which definitely points to an "addiction" to sub, instead of just being "dependant". Some people use it to feed their addictive nature, even though we all know Suboxone just does not work like that chemically. There are still lots of people out there who take it as such.

I haven't re-read the entire thred but I think that's what the OP meant, taking it not as prescribed and using subs to feed the need of wanting something to calm him down, like we all did during active addiction.

Jess

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PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2018 4:08 pm 
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I do see where your coming from rule. But for me I would definitely call it an addiction. I was taking it all day long. Now, I did take small amounts though so that I could take it more often. I remember not feeling like doing my school work because I was tired this was college btw. Anyways, I would take it then didn't feel like it did anything and would take it again before I would even start my work. To me that was an addiction it got to the point that I had to take it to even do anything.. So while suboxone is for recovering I was abusing it. I never shot up or anything I'm afraid of needles thank god, but I did snort it a few times if I'm being completely honest.

So I went from that to trying to taper off, without dealing with the actual addiction. It's a big deal that I'm even admitting all this. I would always try to hide it, but I finally faced up to it all. And I had no idea that the mental aspect would take me down not the physical and you guys know I went through it physically. Amy explained it better than I probably could. I looked at suboxone as something I could abuse legally.. I really wasn't trying to use it as a tool. And I had no idea that I needed to work on myself to that extent. I thought I could just taper off, and be fine.

I finally used suboxone for recovery, and without it I know I wouldn't be where I am today. I'm 3 and a half weeks off of suboxone, and the only issue I still have is back pain it shoots up my spine. I feel great other than that, I am not taking the clonidine I only took that the first week. I take absolutely no medications now, and I do not struggle at all. The only thing I take is over the counter Aleve, which doesn't do much for the back pain. But I know the back pain will go away at some point. I do not struggle mentally, and I still have my drive and energy to get things done.

I think I'm actually doing more without the suboxone. So a little back pain is nothing to me compared to the mental part like anxiety and depression. I don't have anything going on mentally so I'm thankful that I worked hard to recover. It's a never ending battle though, but as long as you put in the work you can make it.


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PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2018 4:53 pm 
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Rob,

I was taking subutex the 54/ 411's if your using the strips, or the new suboxone pill they have out you will have a harder time. The 54's are large enough to break into smaller pieces. I would break them as evenly as I could and as small as I could. Like into 4 then 8 and so on, and I did the math as I broke them. If your tapering off, I would do it as slow as possible. Use that time to work on yourself. If your suffering mentally or physically I wouldn't decrease until you feel better.

All that will do is prolong the suffering. You would think staying on would prolong it, but from my experience doing it too fast prolonged my recovery. I was off suboxone for 3 months last time, and the suffering only got worse. I made that mistake, and I would like to save others from going in cycles. Just put in the work to recover mentally. Oh, and drink meal replacement drinks I still drink one everyday. You can get them cheap at Walmart. I would not try supplements that say they help with anxiety or depression almost all have not been evaluated by the FDA.

Trust me I have tried them all, and they didn't help only thing they did was give me more problems. The best thing you can do is slowly taper, if you don't you will regret it after your jump. Drink meal replacement drinks every single day. And take clonidine that is the best thing for you during this process. It is the only medication that truly helps, and does not have withdrawals. I hope this helps you.. remember patience is the key.


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

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

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