I took laxatives for over 2 1/2 years and I can tell you exactly what to do if you would like to stop taking laxatives. I ended up in the hospital twice and at the end I was taking over 50 pills every few days.
1) you need to be mentally ready... this won't be easy. If you would like to have kids someday you need to stop NOW. If you've already had children, then you need to stop for your family. And if you don't desire having kids you still need to get better for yourself. Every time you take them you're hurting your heart. You need a certain about of water and sodium in your body and when you go to the bathroom you're seriously hurting that balance. A doctor could explain this better
2) don't expect a bowel movement for a few days (I think it took me 5 days). Immediately begin a very strict diet of high fiber foods. I recommend Fiber One cereal (one cup a day... I believe that's two servings), black bean soup, popcorn, and anything else high in fiber.
3) next - drink water, drink water, drink water. Also, hot beverages worked really well for me. Every morning I would have two cups of hot chocolate. Then I would sometimes have another cup later in the day. I realize this may be a lot of sugar so try tea, coffee or low-sugar hot chocolate as well.
4) At the beginning allow yourself plenty of time to have a bowel movement in the morning. If you drink hot beverages in the morning soon your body will begin having a bowel movement everyday at about the same time. Remember you are training your body all over again to have bowel movements.
5) Stay on a strict high fiber diet for one year... yes, ONE YEAR. I'll notice if you begin to slack you won't have a bowel movement for a day or so. Don't mess with your body - you've messed with it enough! It's time to get healthy for you and your family.
6) Continue to eat Fiber One cereal (or another extremely high fiber cereal) every morning for years. It has now been about 9 years since I stopped using. I no longer need high fiber in my diet, however, I should begin eating more fiber just because it's good for you.
You can do this!!!!!!!! It is no fun living like this. I'm holding my 2 year old son right now and I never would have been able to have him or his brother if I had chose not to get better.
Oh, last thing... don't eat much of anything else (other than foods high in fiber) for the first year. This may seem impossible, but I will tell you it wasn't that bad. If people ask questions just tell them you're on a high fiber diet to improve your health. Don't get me wrong, I ate frozen yogurt and other foods, just not that much. Once you begin having bowel movements you'll be able to tell how much fiber you need on a daily basis.
I wish you the BEST OF LUCK!!!!