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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 5:47 am 
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Everytime I come to the forum and look at the recent posts there are so many people tapering, wanting off
the subs. Most everyone is asking for help or sharing their experience with the taper. Most people I read
about are having a hard time with the taper and are going down to almost nothing before jumping off.

It seems like almost everyone is trying to taper off the subs and there are very little posts about staying
on the subs and what good it has done them. This is what I don't understand.

I have no doubt that these people tapering really want off the drug and are very serious about their recovery.
I have been on the subutex for three plus years and I am no where near ready to get off. Sometimes I wonder if I am doing something wrong? After a 29 year addiction to hydros...I did all the things you did
and hurt a lot of people...especially my family. The subutex is the ONLY thing that has ever worked for me.
It immediately took away the cravings for my doc...and made me feel normal again. I know exactly what would happen if I were to get off..I would be right back out there trying to get the hydros. I don't want to
live like that anymore. I am finally FREE and I can function everyday without having to take 20 pain pills.
It has been a miracle in my life. I don't care if subutex is a class 3 narcotic...or the fact that I am still
""on something""...for the first time in my life I feel normal..that black cloud has gone away. So I just
think...why quit something that is the only thing in my life that has ever worked?? So do I really think I can
get off of it and stay clean???...heck no!

I just wondered if there are others out there who feel like I do? Comments appreciated.

Thanks,
Slipper

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 7:04 am 
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slipper wrote:
Everytime I come to the forum and look at the recent posts there are so many people tapering, wanting off
the subs. Most everyone is asking for help or sharing their experience with the taper. Most people I read
about are having a hard time with the taper and are going down to almost nothing before jumping off.

It seems like almost everyone is trying to taper off the subs and there are very little posts about staying
on the subs and what good it has done them. This is what I don't understand.

I have no doubt that these people tapering really want off the drug and are very serious about their recovery.
I have been on the subutex for three plus years and I am no where near ready to get off. Sometimes I wonder if I am doing something wrong? After a 29 year addiction to hydros...I did all the things you did
and hurt a lot of people...especially my family. The subutex is the ONLY thing that has ever worked for me.
It immediately took away the cravings for my doc...and made me feel normal again. I know exactly what would happen if I were to get off..I would be right back out there trying to get the hydros. I don't want to
live like that anymore. I am finally FREE and I can function everyday without having to take 20 pain pills.
It has been a miracle in my life. I don't care if subutex is a class 3 narcotic...or the fact that I am still
""on something""...for the first time in my life I feel normal..that black cloud has gone away. So I just
think...why quit something that is the only thing in my life that has ever worked?? So do I really think I can
get off of it and stay clean???...heck no!

I just wondered if there are others out there who feel like I do? Comments appreciated.

Thanks,
Slipper






ps....I did not mean to offend anyone who is trying to get off the subs. I think it is wonderful that you feel
you can get off and stay off. I just don't know when I will ever get there?....

Slipper

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 9:56 am 
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Hi Slipper!

That's the major difference in us, I was more than ready to get off the subs, and your not. And that is perfectly ok you realize your not ready to do that yet, if ever. If you want to remain on them the rest of your life that's ok too! No one will ever judge you for thinking that way!

I hit my rock bottom, and even went below it. Lost lots of things and got on subs to save my life. I was on subs about 3 years after about 15 years of abusing every drug there was. Got into NA and AA meetings, saw a counselor for a long time, and it just got to the point I knew I was ready, and I knew using again just wasn't an option for me any longer.

Plainly put, I just got tired of the entire game of taking pills or other substances. I got tired of all of it and never want to use again. You could put a full bottle of any drug in front of me right now and I would turn and go the other way, or hand them back to you. That's how sure I am using is no longer part of my life!

You may or may not get to that point in your life. If you do, great, if you don't, that's great too and remain on the subs. You have to do what's right for YOU with this Slipper. It's YOUR life and YOUR decision to make.

My sub doctor wanted me to go off them after about 6-9 months and I refused and told him I knew if I stopped them at that point I KNEW I would go right back to active addiction again right away. Just like I know right now that lifestyle is completely over for me now. I know that deep down and remain committed to that life now. He let me remain on them and trusted my judgement. which I was very thankful for.

Stick around and let us know how your doing. Your not the only one that isn't anywhere ready to stop the subs. Many others here that aren't ready either, and may not ever be ready. We understand your decisions!

Karen xoxo


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 5:12 pm 
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I'm all for life long or long term sub use, especially for previous IV heroin users because their risk of release is super scary and dangerous. For someone like me, NOT to downplay my addiction, but I took 60-90mg of oxycodone a day. Never enough to OD (I realize that may sound naive), never, ever mixed pills or alcohol. I just simply liked the way they made me feel and eventually just needed to avoid withdrawal. I'm fairly confident in my ability to stay clean. And really, sub aren't without side effects. I feel like my emotions are slightly numbed, moreso than when on oxycodone. And I also feel scattered. I'm not able to concentrate well at work, etc. I genuinely want to know life without meds. If I continue to relapse, I will consider long term maintenance. But as of now, I'm using medication to help me avoid withdrawal while I attend therapy and work through my issues. Hope that helps!

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 9:53 am 
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Hey Slipper,

I'm sorry I haven't responded to your post sooner. I had a nice long post typed out for you the day you posted this, hit submit, and it disappeared! Don't you LOVE it when that happens?

I really think the biggest reason we don't see more posts by people who are using suboxone long term is because they just aren't having any problems that they have questions about. They have gone through the first few months of treatment, dealt with the induction and getting stable, and are feeling good and comfortable with their treatment. You will always see more posts by people who are having problems, and the biggest percentage of those who have problems with sub therapy are those who are trying to quit!

I would love to see more threads that would be of interest to long term maintenance members. I just don't have any good ideas for posts that would be of interest. Maybe we can brainstorm a bit here on this thread and figure out some topics that you, and other maintenance patients, would like to see discussed?

As for you feeling like you are doing something wrong because you don't have a desire to get off the subs. That's completely silly! You are doing nothing wrong! You are the only person who knows what you need. Nobody else can tell you whether or not you should taper. You have to do what is right for you to keep yourself well. And if you never get off the subs, that is just fine!

I really think part of the reason we are seeing an increase in taperers is because of the shift in thinking from the doctors themselves. I know there are still a percentage of doctors who want people on long term maintenance. But in my experience, the ones who are jumping on the band wagon recently are not in that camp of thinking. My first doctor, and almost every other doctor in my area, refused to keep patients in treatment for longer than one year. That opinion is bound to trickle down to the general public. When they see the doctors saying you should only be in treatment for X amount of time, they think they are doing something bad if they stay on it any longer.

Keep your chin up slipper, you are doing fabulous! I look forward to hearing your ideas on new threads!

Q

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 10:43 am 
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Hey Slipper,

I am a life long suboxone user. I am also a relapser. So I know that I need to be on suboxone for the rest of my life. I am a mother, wife and employee and I do NOT think I could do a good job at any of those with out the aid of medication ( Suboxone). I am an addict, and I do not see a cure for addiction except with medication. Suboxone is that medication. The only hope that I have is this....
Suboxone is expensive, going to the doctor is expensive, getting hasseled at the pharmacy sucks. I think this is the main thing that I would say weighs on me every month when I have to get a refill. I truly wish that it was cheaper to get on and the pharmacies were more educated on addiction medication.

But even with these minor hassles, it is only MINOR when it comes to the alternative..


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 8:35 pm 
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I agree with everything Raudy said. But you are correct, the majority of threads lately seem to be about getting off of Suboxone. Dr. Junig just posted a new thread about just that. Perfect timing IMO.

Like others have said, I too sometimes feel a bit numb, and or foggy. But all it takes is for me to be really busy and I'm good to go. If a person just sits around and focuses on how they feel on Suboxone, well, you're going to come up with quite a lot of things. Keep busy and you won't even realize you're on it.

If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 9:05 pm 
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So, here i am almost 3 years into this,and ive never been in better shape. Ive become a workaholic in a good way. Our house has never looked better.I seem to be able to wake earlier,need less sleep and have many new interests. I owe it to my new life in recovery and.......SUBOXONE. ya all 5mgs of it. Yes at higher doses in the begining id have that tired thing too. But the more i moved around the better i was. I do not post much but read every day here. I see many trying to taper an jump. I have great respict for them and wish them well. This is indeed a process. And as time gos by, some feel there time has come to come off and live drug free. Me, well ive thought about it once in awhile. But ya if it aint broke dont fix it! Thats just how i am today. Been a great 34 months. The recovery world was new to me. I learn something everyday. Im lucky. I found this forum and Dr J and all the great people here. You Mods do a great job i should add...im ramblein here. Good lucky everyone...ill be around...raz..55


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 4:36 pm 
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Long term maintenance user here (buprenorphine these last few years.) Buprenorphine has allowed me to attain Full- Sustained Remission; on Agonist Therapy - This means that I have not met any DSM criteria for any chemical of abuse dependence or abuse in more than two years. Agonist therapy (including partial agonists and antagonists) are considered recovery according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, so there naysayers! I have no plans of getting off, I see people taper in arbitrary amounts of time for what boil down to arbitrary reasons and they quickly begin the vicious cycle of addiction and end up in some sort of institution, staying under the radar but are living miserable lives by their own reports, or dead by overdose, suicide or high-risk behaviors associated with opioid addiction. Some people taper and do fine, but I haven't run across one who hasn't succumbed to the cycle listed above or make their way back to methadone/buprenorphine and regain their life..Usuallhy much more thankful for their medication now that they've seen just how helpful it was for them and where they ended up quickly without it.

If when I'm way older or god forbid I have some severe chronic pain issues buprenorphine can't deal with, I may consider switching to methadone. If an newer medication comes out (probably not an implant), I might consider that as well depending on what it is. But call me a 'lifer,' I've been called much worse. At least with buprenorphine I have a life that I am able to maintain!

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:56 pm 
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I feel as though I could just copy and paste what others have already said here lol.

I have been on Suboxone just over 2 years since I had gotten off of it for a shade under a year. It has treated me very well this time and that's due to changes I've made in my life and recovery ideas. I truly believe that suboxone works differently when used in combination with some solid recovery practices and just taken and try to figure the rest out on your own since we're all so smart lol.

Anyways. It has allowed me to whole heartedly get my life back to tip top condition. I am now married to the greatest/non-addictive, and supportive wife and that's something I thought I'd never get because I was "married" to opiates. I have a great job, hobbies, good friends I can trust with anything, family stability, trust from others, and many many other gifts thanks to this medicine. I don't want to put it all on Suboxone like I said earlier though. It took work on my end. Going to many many meetings, meeting new clean friends, and basically changing my entire life. I feel as though some of my personality has changed but we are who we are ya know?

Finally. I will say this. Suboxone can make you or break you. Use it wisely. I don't plan on stopping anytime soon, but anything can happen. That's just how I feel as of today. I haven't thought about using opiates in over 2 years and to me that's incredible! I also continue to take suboxone because I don't want to possibly die from using again. I have way too much to stay clean for today.

I don't experience the side effects that I've heard many speak of and nor have I ever felt anything drastic.... That being said... I do notice SOMETHING different. I don't know if it's just a post active addiction version of me that I need to get used to or the suboxone. I can't remember anything short term a lot of the time (dumb stuff) aka forgetful.... And I just feel like a much more lame version of who I used to be even before drugs. Could it be recovery and fears? Yes. But I just feel as though something isn't there that used to be. Hard to explain.... But I attribute some of that to the suboxone.


Great drug, saved my life, and I'll be taking it.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 9:06 am 
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I want to post more, but I don't feel much like sitting here very long right now, so I'll just say this:

I have wondered the same thing...noticed the same thing too Slipper. I hit "new posts" button and see all the people tapering, asking for help to get off..and I leave the site without saying anything, or posting at all...because none of this relates to me. I can't align with anyone who's trying to stop suboxone...because I, in my best interest, feel I should stay on it.
And even moreso with what just happened in my family 2 days ago. For anyone who doesn't know, my brother passed, and they "suspect" it's a massive heart-attack due to drug overdose.
That's not the cause, yet, still pending. But that's what they think...and I really don't want to find out what happened. He's gone...that's all I need to know about the situation..
But if I wasn't on Suboxone right now...well, I don't wanna think about what I might do.

but I do feel the same way...and I'm glad to see a few of the "lifers" posting here...sometimes I feel so alone in my journey..because I think I'll be a lifer on Suboxone. I have absolutely no desire to get off right now...that may change in the future, but for now....it's not broken and I'm not fixing it.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 10:24 pm 
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I'm very sorry for your loss, Jonathan. It's so difficult when someone dies so suddenly, especially family.

Amy

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 8:16 am 
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Can't help but read these posts and feel the need for subs, I miss the normalcy, or at least the last definition I had of it. I'm 11 days in today, feel better, but my body is still sending me all kinds of messages, instructions, questions, etc. regarding what it's now missing after 17 years of adjustment. BUT, I do know I am more engaged, more cognizant of everything, something I only became aware of after 3 days(a year ago)without the subs. So my whole motivation was to have that awareness again, I simply didn't realize what the subs had done to me, I also had that YEAH when I went on them 6 years ago. It was a miracle, changed my life BIG TIME. With me at least part of it was psychological because I was now doing it legally, and it more meshed with my spirit, I had come to feel awful about always seeking and scoring.

Now I have to say this, with only 11 days in the euphoria of my new reality, is beginning to not have the same exciting effect on me, and that scares the hell out of me because I don't want to fail here. My wife never fully understood the 'normal' thing, and her accusations really used to piss me off, which lead to another dose I didn't need. Yep, I was using the subs to escape, to numb, and they worked. I was happy with my normal, I had gotten down to using only 2mg a day, all day. For the record, 2mg is where I jumped 11 days ago, and it has been one hell of a ride.

I pray I find something concrete to build this foundation on, other than just being clean. Does anyone understand that? I mean, being able to say I am free of my DOC, yet I feel something missing from my life, a true yearning, does that really make me a better person? I know condemnation has to be one of the worst things to happen to an addict, it only pushed me further, and made me feel like I wasn't doing my part. I never missed work, I made a good living, I was ok with my program and not ready to begin thinking of jumping. Can anyone relate to this, expand on it? This part has really troubled me from jump street.

Good luck, stay in the zone where your most ok, nobody knows you better than you. I think the biggest factor is YOUR people who SUPPORT you/us.

Thanks for allowing me to ramble.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:31 am 
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RYD2LIV,

It sounds like your "pink cloud" time may be coming to an end. When we first get off drugs, everything seems so new again, so exciting, exhilarating, but then reality has a sneaky way of creeping back in. Now is when the real work of staying clean begins. Have you considered doing any kind of recovery work? Have you thought about working with an addiction counselor, going to NA/AA, trying SMART recovery?

You mentioned how you feel something missing from your life, that's completely normal. In NA, they call it the "God shaped hole." IMO, #1, you're missing your drug. #2, you have no idea how to live without drugs. I was in the exact same boat, man. I white knuckled it and stayed clean for 9 months once off Suboxone by holding on by my finger tips, but then had a series of short slips. Those slips taught me that I wasn't doing enough, I wasn't doing something right. I got my butt into NA, got back in touch with my addiction counselor, learned some recovery techniques and more importantly, practiced those recovery techniques and wove them into my daily life.

From reading some of your posts, you sound to be in and around the same age bracket as me. I spent 25 years of my life on drugs, I had thoroughly trained myself how to live on drugs. When time came to live without drugs, Phew.....I needed help. Maybe you need some help, too?

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 04, 2013 12:09 am 
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Didn't check date, but great post romeo. You made me look at an angle I never really saw or thought about. That when folks start subs and say that they are "a shell of my former self" and things like that.... I feel like it's lack of recovery and straight up damage from active addiction. Many getting clean their first time that go straight to suboxone, have no idea what active addiction has really done to their ideas, attitudes, thoughts, emotions, ect. Some things just don't go back to the way they were. So in essence, there are parts of you that are gone forever now, but not because of suboxone. Although I do believe that while suboxone allows us to lead a more normal life.... Their are some days I feel like the sub does SOMETHING to me emotionally and what not. I can't put my finger on it though lol.


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 Post subject: Re: Dear slipper
PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:28 pm 
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Slipper, if you're totally honest with yourself about your reaction would you say that it instills a slight feeling of fear? Because I know that's what it is for me when I see all these posts about people tapering, planning to taper, or just saying how badly they want to get off and discuss it with their doc soon. When we see maintenance posts that have positivity we may feel supported, I feel comforted to see one after a string of ones about tapering.
And I don't mean to assume how you feel specifically or criticize people posting about going off of it, I just understand the reaction and i think with a treatment so controversial and fertile ground for strong opinions about it, we have this need to not be the only one, to not be alone. And the fact that this is a support site with a lot of pro-sub opinions, definitely many more than we may find out there in the world, perhaps it's not so much the comments of tapering as it is the environment in which it's posted. Like it's easy to think, wait if there's so many people HERE who feel done with subs and/or things associated with it, then am I gonna be all alone? I can't think of a better or more particular way to describe it but that's my best shot for right now.
As someone said above, also it may make maintenance patients feel like they are doing something wrong because it IS great that so many people are ready to be more independent in their treatment, however it doesn't mean that that's for everyone right now or ever, and it doesn't mean that it's not also great that others still on maintenance are doing well in their productive, content, functional, meaningful lives and recognize they still need this treatment if they wanna avoid de-railing everything they've worked for. If it makes you feel any better I'm not ready yet either, and I've been on it over a year and a half.

The important thing to remember is that duration of Suboxone aid is personal, different for everyone. And why the guilt? If everything was going great on this med before and you've haven't been relapsing, why the negative feelings - because some others are getting off? Because the doctor tells you most his patients go off after a while? These are words, they are other peoples actions - which means that nothing has changed, there is nothing different in your life or health from before you heard someone's news to after. Just try to remember that.
Good luck :)


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