View Full Version : Feel Worse Than Ever

John 808
12-30-2003, 11:22 AM
Hey ya'll,

Alot of you know me and know my story. If you don't, a quick synopsis- I have been addicted to pain meds on and off for three years ending up with a 25 a day habit after the birth of my third child (have three little ones five and under). I went to a sub doctor and was put on subutex about seven weeks ago. Recently, stopped the sub and went a hydro binge (went through about 300 in two weeks...I know...YIKES!). Went back to the sub (four days now) and after reading some other's struggles getting off the sub, feel like I am trading one addiction for another. So, talked to my husband and he talked to my sub doctor today. They first discussed the Xanax issue- my sub doctor says NO WAY to me taking Xanax, my pshychiatrist says I need it as I have severe anxiety disorder. Now, I have taken Xanax for nine months and have never abused, never had a desire to abuse, it does nothing for me but calm me down when my anxiety "kicks in." Back to my sub doctor, he told my husband that benzo's are the most addictive drug there is and they should be banned and no addict had any business taking so if I wanted to stay on the sub program, I would have to get off the Xanax. Then, they discussed the sub. My husband asked would it be diffucult to get off and would I have withdrawals? His answer was Yes and Yes to both questions- so what's the point of the sub? Next issue, he told my husband I needed to be put in detox/treatment. I have heard horror stories of treatment centers- does anyone have any experiences with detox. My husband is now convinced that is what I need. I have cried all day- I feel more depressed and in despair than I have felt in a very long time. I actually told my husband how unhappy I was and didn't even know if I did the right thing in marrying him- now where did that come from????? I just need some advice- sorry for the pity-party as my husband calls it but he has no idea what I am feeling- I don't even think I do? What would ya'll do if you were me? HELP!!!


12-30-2003, 01:49 PM
Oh Michelle - what a nightmare you must be going through. I know that you absolutely do not want to go to rehab because of your kids and because of some of the stories you've read. I can't believe this doctor... I told you what that other doctor told me (the addictionologist) which is that NOBODY should be on xanax and that it is just achohol in a pill form. Whether it is or isn't, I just know that without them, I would still be freaking out ALL of the time. I used to wouldn't even drive on the interstate because I was so scared so I would go back roads and a 30 min drive to work would end up being an hour and 20 minutes. Also, I used to wake up in the middle of the night thinking someone was breaking in. I lived in an upstairs appt. (w/my husband at the time) and I would get up about 8 times a night to go look out the windows to make sure we were safe. Now, I don't seem to have these 'unrealisitic' fears because of my benzos and like you, I don't abuse them either. I know how you feel because when I walked out of the first doctor's office, I felt like I had no hope for getting clean because he wanted me off of Xanax and everything and I knew I couldn't stop the Xanax. I just needed help getting off of hydros. I swear, that day I cried all day long thinking I would end up killing myself because I had no hope in getting help for my addiction. But, I went and found another doc the very next day and he's the one that put me on sub, etc. I promise you I know that hopeless feeling. You have to come up with viable options. What can be done to help you get clean? Can you find another Sub doctor? In reality, was the sub working for you that well anyway? And why didn't he put you on Suboxone instead of Subutex? Unless you have a reaction to Suboxone, Subutex is not to be prescribed for maintenance as it does nothing to block the effects of opiates. (from my understanding) Also, your husband needs to go to Alanon, desperately. He needs to understand that this is a disease and you are not a bad person!! Also, be patient with him since he doesn't know much about it and don't take his words personally. (easier said than done). O.K. Back to your options - I know people personally that have attended AA and NA meetings and it has been the key to their success. I mean they attended sometimes two meetings a day in the beginning and about 4 a week after that. Even if you go into rehab, you are going to need these meetings. Remember, everyone says and i believe this that this disease is bigger than we are. We 'are powerless over this illness'. You can't do this alone and I know you want to so desperately. You could try to take sub just for a few days to get through the worst of the hydro withdrawal (which after four days, you are probably already getting there) and then stop taking them. The cravings will be hard along with the depression and everything else but that's what the meetings are for. Does your husband want you to attend meetings? Do you think this is a possible plan that he's willing to agree to and that you are willing to agree to as well? Maybe you can tell him that if you go this route and you fail, then you will go to rehab. I know rehab has helped a lot of people too. I think the worst part about it is that sometimes (and I do mean sometimes) they don't prescribe the right medication for the withdrawals and since you are through the worst part, maybe it would be beneficial? Do you think that it is an option at this point? I know that you said your husband can't take care of the kids the way you do but you do know that he will at least love them and take care of their basic needs. Nobody cares if their hair isn't perfect all of the time. We are talking about your life here and your children need a mommy when they grow up and if you don't get some kind of help, they won't have one. I know you know all of this.... the thing that will help you right now is to get a plan on how you can get better. If you want to stick with the sub route, then maybe you could go to another doctor, even if it means driving a few hours? I'm really, really sorry that you are having to deal with this right now. I promise, there is light at the end of the tunnel and there are options that you can chose from. I'm praying so much for you and please, please write as often as you can.

12-30-2003, 01:56 PM
hey michelle-
i personally neverwent to detox for my alcoholism but my husband did for his hydro addiction. he said detox itself wasn't too bad. he was drugged up on ativan the first couple of days so he would sleep through the worst of the withdrawal. he said his days were pretty structured, meetings with counselors, group, etc. however, the one thing he was upset about was at discharge they kinda just open the door and say good luck, here's an aa/na list. what they didn't tell him (as he tells it) is how long the cravings last (months) or how deep his depression would be. needless to say, he relapsed and is now on a mmt program which i have to say is doing wonders and has given me back the man i married (for the most part-sex is still an issue). anyway, i'm rambling. and it's time for me to leave work. hope this helped. have a good night, i'll try to get online when i get home.

12-30-2003, 02:02 PM
Thank You Michelle sounds like we are in the same boat with the exception half of the 120 are for my wife so she knows what the scoop is my children are young so they are doing well and are well taken care of and loved very much Thats the hardest part for me the kids I want to be a strong Daddy for them and I am as long as I'm medicated! I hope you can work things out with your husband and yourself.

John 808
12-30-2003, 02:08 PM
Thank you so much, Banker!

I just wrote to someone on another thread and encouraged them to continure posting even if they "mess up" because it makes you feel so good to here words of encouragement and you are always so supportive and make me feel better (well, just a little today :) )>

I took 16 mgs sub Sunday, 12mgs Monday, and 8mgs today. I have had an upset stomach, am very emotional (crying, crying, crying), a little lethargic, not sleeping well, and haven't had the sweaty feeling as of lately, but I am today. I think I may drop to 4mgs tomorrow and maybe 2mgs the next day and quit. We'll see what happens. I am just so mad at myself and wonder why I cannot be happy- I have everything a woman could possibly want. My children, my husband (who if fairly supportive and loving- doesn't full understand), my ability to stay home and raise my children, financially blessed, and so on...so what is wrong with me? Even before I began abusing I don't think I have been completly happy- I think that is one reason I ended up abusing. I just can't make heads or tails of any of this. I know I have not been relying on God's strength and I don't know why??? I haven't prayed in days...why??? I just feel like I am in a big black hole and I have no idea how to get out and to have these three little innocent faces asking me why I am crying and why am I sad, just kills me.

I just don't think I am cut out for rehab- I just don't think I can do it. And if they take my Xanax away...I will definately have a nervous breakdown. Atleast right now.

Thanks again for responding so quickly and I hope you are doing well. I am so proud for your month. Before you know it, it will be two and then three. YEAH FOR YOU! :) Keep up the good work and God bless,


12-30-2003, 02:12 PM
mechelle please dont let my experience with sub ruin your chances with it.everybody is different and you might not have any trouble at all gettin off sub so dont lose the fight before it starts.if you can take the sub every other day then that is great and a good start as i could not do this at all had to have it every day no matter what.use what you have left on a every other day schedule and keep lengthing the time that you take the sub by one hour every week if you can and you can do this.i have felt a little better today but not much but a little is better than none to me.i feel for you and now is the time to set down with the man and come up with a plan and stick to it.NO MATTER what you do there will be some w/ds to everything so just count on this when you are makin the plan.how much sub do you have left and how many hydros do you have left.nothing will work until you decide to make a change so if you are not ready then there is nothing nobody can do at this point-spark

John 808
12-30-2003, 02:16 PM
Thanks, too, Drew. My children are all five and under and like you, I feel at my best when I am on the pain meds. That can't be right though. Gotta get something worked out. My very best goes out to you and your family!

Laney, thank you as well for your input on detox. I think the doctor used the term "hospitalized treatment." He was even telling my husband about this great clinic in Oklahoma..hello..we live in Mississippi. So, sounds like he has plans for me to be in there awhile. Don't think I can to it! Thank you though and best of luck to you and your husband. Hope "everything" gets worked out :) !

God bless each of you,

John 808
12-30-2003, 02:25 PM

Wasn't just thinking of you alone- the sub doctor flat out told my husband it was not going to be easy and there would be withdrawals. I have about 40 8 mgs of sub tablets and 120 hydro's (10/325). I have stuck to the sub and am going to try that route- I HAVE TO MAKE IT THIS TIME- HAVE TO! If not, my husband said we would have no other choice than to put me in the hospital and like I said they were talking about a hospital in Oklahoma. I cannot be away from my babies that long. I have no other choice than to get it right this time. I am sick of this cycle- it has taken its toll on me emotionally. I firmly believe my brain is messed up. I cannot continue to live like this- so it is do or die this time.

You hang in there and I am glad you are feeling a little better. Hey, question, I have been having alot of "tingling" in my fingers, hands and arms. Did you do that? Just curious. My thoughts are with you, Spark. I truly appreciate your concern and if you need mine..just let me know.


12-30-2003, 02:52 PM
Michelle - I can relate about the not praying issue. There have been times when I feel so badly about myself, I don't feel 'worthy' to pray. And then sometimes when I've been really depressed, I think that it wouldn't help if I prayed anyway. Now, you and I both know that it does help to pray and that God listens to us. The reason I felt this way (and I think you are feeling this way too) is because I was terribly depressed. You said you have everything you wanted but are still unhappy... you know some people's depression stems from a true chemical imbalance that has nothing to do with their situation or what kind of childhood they had. Are you currently taking an anti depressant? I'm surprised that your phsyciatrist would prescribe Xanax but not an anti depressant. Some doctors think anxiety is a symptom of depression and that soemthing like Zoloft or Lexepro (or any of the tons of other kinds out there) will help and it has helped me too. Let me know and keep your chin up... just like Spark said.. you need a plan and you need to stick to it. Michelle, remember what I said about you having those 10 in your purse, well..... what are you going to do with the 120 that you have? The biggest question, just like Spark said, is are you ready? If so, you know what the answer is! If you are not ready, your time will come. I didn't stop and/or seek help until I was ready.

12-30-2003, 03:36 PM
My heart just goes out to you! I had 4 children under the age of five when I had to battle addiction. And I so agree with Banker. This is a disease - you cannot do it alone. I finally threw in the towel and went to AA - it was the turning point for me.
I had years of being clean and then developed another addiction - 3 years ago -to ativan. ( a dreaded benzo) I blame my doctor for being so stupid as to put me on them without warning me of the dangers. But I have successfully - again using AA philosophy and help + expert medical help - got clean. My 3 mg of ativan were changed to 30 mg valium and I tapered off slowly.
Dont despair - but dont try to do everything at once. First deal with the opiate addiction - it is easier to do than getting off the xanax. There seems to be some great advice offered here - and you should - with help - be able to get off without having to go into rehab. For what its worth - I hear very little good talked about rehab. Addiction is a life long disease which you have to acknowledge and then deal with. Once you have admitted it - which you clearly have - seek help from people who have already been thro it - and take control of your life again. Only you can determine when you are ready to do this. And I hope its now. Dont try and go it alone. I know the guilt you carry because of your children. But - this time - you have to put yourself first and get clean for you! If you get well - everyone will benefit. You cannot do this for your children - you must do it for you. If you remain addicted then you will lose out as will your children. So - for now - its you who is important.
Tackling the xanax is for the future when you have kicked the opiates. Xanax - being a benzo - takes a long long time to taper off. 1 mg xanax = 20 mg of valium. You cannot do cold turkey and you will look at months of slow tapering. Dont worry about anxiety. Some people say that xanax actually causes anxiety and when they gave it up were very surprised at how the anxiety just left them. The benefits of benzos disappears after a few weeks use - then tolerance sets in and the drug then just produces dependency and some unpleasant side effects. The efficacy of the drug has disappeared a long time ago.
Michelle - dont despair - you have shown great self knowledge. I think you are in a strong position now to finally kick those opiates. Take advice from everyone here - everyone supports you. Always remembering that you are not bad or weak - you are desperately sick. But you are lucky - you can reach out and grab the tools for getting better. Addiction is a life long illness - but one which is very treatable. You can have your life back but must remain ever vigilant - on a daily basis. But - you are never alone - there are literally millions of us out here - all leading happy productive lives - one day at a time!
Michelle - I just wish I could reach out and help - all I can do is offer a hand of friendship at this difficult time. I have been exactly where you are. I am now living a happy life with 4 grown up well adapted children, I have a wonderful husband, a part-time job etc etc. It can be done! There is proof of that all around you.
Wishing you well - make 2004 the most memorable of your life by taking control again. You have everything to live for...............and it really does get better - beyond your wildest dreams!

12-30-2003, 03:52 PM

I did my very best to warn you against using other opiates while your taking suboxone. It really messes with your brain. Depression, anziety and feelings of hopelessness are exactly what I experienced when I took oxycontin for a few days. Please don't do this again. It is going to take a week or two before your brain adjusts again. Keep looking until you find a doctor who can meet your needs.

John 808
12-30-2003, 06:39 PM
Thanks ya'll for all your responses. Yinsky, I appreciate the time it must have taken to write such a long, but touching post. Thank you!

Some of you will not agree with what I am going to do, but I have to give it one more try. I have talked with my husband for hours about what to do. He is leaning towards hospitalization, but I just can't agree to that yet. He and my doctor talked about a hospital in Oklahoma and my doctor said we would be looking at a three or four month stay. I just can't do that. That is motivation for me to try one last time to get clean on my own- well, I will have a little help. My husband is fully aware now of everything that is going on and I am going to start attending meetings once a week at a local church for addictions. I just cannot imagine being away that long from my babies. I will get clean for that reason alone. Don't mistake that I don't want to do it for me- I want more than anything in the world to be free of this insane hold these pills have over me! I know I can do this- my brother beat stronger addictions cold-turkey and there are people on this board who have done it. I do have the sub to taper with or the hydro's to taper with. I have yet to decide which way to go and would like your advice on that- PLEASE! I realize I have to choose one or the other and stick to it. It is like I said earlier- this time, it is do or die. I am so ready for a happy, healthy life.

I do take Lexapro for depression and ofcourse, the Xanax, as needed. I will address the Xanax issue once the pain med issue has been dealt with. I was somewhat of an insecure person as a teenager which led to me being a perfectionist as an adult. I put way too much pressure on myself on how I look, my weight (if I get a pound over 110 and will go without eating until I drop it :confused: ), my house (it has to be in tip-top condition), my church activites (can never say "no" and am always cooking for someone, filling in for Sunday School classes, etc), just added pressure on myself. I have got to learn that everything will never be perfect- including me. I think that has led to alot of my unhappiness and depression. I get "down" so easy! Anyway- I am babbling I know. I am just trying to make some sense of all of this. I have cried so today that my eyes are actually hurting.

Please give me your advice on the best way to taper- remember, I have about six weeks. I DO NOT WANT TO BE HOSPITALIZED! Please help see me through this and help me not to fall- I'll need ya'lls support more than ever.

I wish the very best for each of you and your daily struggles. Congratulations to all of those who have beaten this ugly battle and I hope in a few months I can be one of them! God bless,


12-30-2003, 07:52 PM
Hey - you sound so much better! I'm so glad. I could feel your overwhelming feeling of hopelessness in your first post. I can tell that you can see a light at the end of the tunnel and I'm so glad. Michelle, please, please don't take another Norco. My vote (for whatever it is worth) is for you to continue to taper off of Sub just like you said before. 2 mgs per day. You went two weeks without taking them and I believe that is going to help you on the withdrawals from it. If you start feeling withdrawals once you stop them... which should be in 3 days, I think... then maybe take 1 or 2 mgs as needed which hopefully would be every other day and then every 3 days but only take it if you feel really, really sick. If you can stand it, try not to if you really don't want to take sub anymore. I'm so glad you are ready! You are also very lucky to have a supporting husband. Even though he might get frustrated, that's only normal with the fact that he simply cannot relate to what we all deal with. Also, while you are going through this and feeling this depression, you might want to consider talking with the phyciatrist about either upping your lexepro or changing because you are going to need something that really helps fight depression and right now it doesn't sound like it's helping you. Just a thought... maybe once you get in these meetings... your depression will ease up with the help of everyone there and their support and the 12 steps. I'm VERY proud of you! Even though I'm a firm believer in meetings, I haven't started going yet. I'm still a chicking poop. I have a counselor that I see every single week and I've been going to her for about 4 years. She has been helping me with the addiction piece since she didn't even know until about 3 months ago. She is wonderful... she calls and checks on me. It's like she really does care. I also have a wonderful friend who knows EVERYTHING and she listens to me ALOT about how I feel and what I go through. However, the Sub is working so well, I just really don't even want to take hydros right now. Like I said before, I really like the way I feel now better than when I was abusing. I'm afraid that I will be one of the 'lifers' on Sub which is something I will be o.k. with since I'm not continuing to ruin my life. I don't know... I hope maybe one day I can get off of it but I try not to think about it right now and just focus on being happy again and not thinking about getting pills 24/7. Also, give it your all with your new plan and please trash the hydros. We have no control over them, Michelle. With the help of your na/aa group, you can be successful and I'm praying so hard for you that you will. You will have accomplished so much and you will be so proud of yourself. I promise, you will have a different outlook on life. No matter what, don't stop posting on here. Take care and keep us posted. One more thing... think you can try maybe 2 or 3 meetings a week instead of one? In the beginning, I'm just worried that you will need more than once a week. But hey - going once a week is a heck of a lot better than not going at all so if that's all you can do for now, then you are still doing wonderfully! Remember what someone else said (I think Phil)... Imagine your goal, visualize it, and see in your mind how beautiful it will be when you are your normal self again! Actually, I bet you will even be happier than before you started the drugs. Sorry this is so long... I'm just so happy that you have a plan!!!!! God does listen and answer prayers!

12-30-2003, 09:08 PM
bein that you are already usin the sub i would stay with it but began the taper on it tomorrow.use it every other day and lengthin the time between doses as much as you can.i think it was bodymech that said usin other opiates while the sub is still on your brain really messes you up and i agree 110% on this as it happened to me and i have preached on here about not usin opiates while the sub is on the brain as it will make you a complete zombie.i see no reason why you should have to go to rehab unless you want to as you can beat this if you reallly want to,but you have got to want it now.give the hydros to your man to hold and if you decide to taper usin the hydros he can controll the pills.since you are takin the sub i would use it until it is gone but you need to start taperin the sub tomorrow and stick with it.get down to 2mgs per day for 2weeks then 1mg then .5mg then c/t the rest of the way.no matter how you do it there will be w/ds so just prepare yourself for this and let husband no about w/ds so he can help you thru them.like i said before nothin will work not even inhouse rehab unless you are ready to make the change.you are in my prayers girl and i know you can do it and im pullin for ya all the way and if i can help just let me know.as you know im still fightin my own battle but i do see light but it is very far away but i see it-sparky

12-31-2003, 06:17 AM
Hey girl, I know I am gonna have to do something to get offf the pain meds as soon as I recover from the next surgery! Lots of folks say dont beat yourself up too bad cause I DO have a legit reason to be on them right now, but I know in my heart that I will have to go through a tuff time to get off them, and I dont know how I will deal with the pain if it does not go away after this next surgery, I do know my ortho doc thinks Im addicted to the meds ,he told me that,but he is giving them to me right now because I am one week out of major surgery and 3 weeks away from 3rd surgery. I have asked him to help me tapper as much as possiable and he just said it wont be easy ,and I know that, but I really hope I can do it without detox, just like you I have read too many horror stories about detox! I really hope to tapper down to crumbs ,like our friend Philster did, and then tackle the withdrawals cause I know I WILL have to face them sooner or later. Maybe a good Detox program with the Activan for w/ds would really really help, but too many detox programs that I have read about just want you to bare with as much as you can and they just monitor your vitals? I have never been to detox so I do not know, but I would be, let me say I AM very interested in what you decide to do, so please let me know, and you take care of yourself and I hope your spouce can understand what you are going through cause I DO KNOW how important that part is anyway! And try and stay away from the hydros if ya can, I know easier said than done,lol!!! Stay Strong!

12-31-2003, 06:35 AM
Thats a pretty intense thread...Ok the 'straight dope'..as they say..Detox is not the worst thing that could happen to you.
But-your weaning off the sub is not going to work.Way too fast-and you'll be on the hydro's immediately.
Detox is compleately anonymous..no one will know..a private institution(out of state/vicinity..if you are worried.What im saying is:this doesn't just go away..we are addicts..and this disease doesn't discriminate.
Detox(ive been in 5 programs) also does not mean its over-its just a jumpstart.
My husband is a teacher..a wonderful one i might add-that is highly respected in our community and had to go to detox several times.He ran into staff members that he knew-and there was complete anonymity.They are professionals..like your psych/dr.
There is no shame in getting off drugs/its worse trying to keep up the double life..as i well know!
Im trying to be honest and helpful-not judgemental-you have depression issues that ecaserbate the addiction.
Look into some differant programs..choose the right place for you..private hospitals may keep you on your xanax,etc...or use a substitute.
If this all seems too much-please find a new sub dr. and don't worry about about trading one addiction for another-this is a step toward recovery.
If you want the xanax and want off the sub-detox is the way to go..off the opiates and on the psych program.
Hope this helps..

John 808
12-31-2003, 07:39 AM
Hey ya'll- thank you so much for taking the time to write words of support and encouragement. Sometimes, I can't wait to get upstairs to the computer because I know I will feel better after reading all of your posts.

Good to hear from you Ric! I wish you the very best in your sugery and recovery- I would try not to even worry about the pain med issue right now (I know that is hard to do). You have so much legitimate pain to deal with right now. My prayers are certainly with you.

Well, everyone posted to stick with the sub and I decided to taper with the hydro's. My reasoning is that the sub stays in your system longer and I am going to ask Phil to help me with a taper and stick to it. I have cold-turkey once and I can make it if I make through the first 72 hours physically and my husband and I will just have to time it where I will take my last few crumbs on a Friday so he can tend to the babies. After that, I will have to find some meetings or a sponsor to help mentally and my husband is going to try to put a block on the computer to keep internet pharmacies out of my reach. It is do this or ship off to a hospital for three months and I CANNOT AND WILL NOT DO THAT- I will fight this with every ounce of being that I have and I will beat this because I will not leave my babies for that long. My five year old woke in the night with a 103 fever and then my one year old has learned to crawl out of her crib, so she was up half the night and they both want their mommy....what if I wasn't there? My husband could sleep through a tornado- he never hears them cry- what if I wasn't there and my five year old was left crying in her bed with a 103 fever- forget that! I will do this- I have to do this- I have no choice but to do this. So bear with me guys...I'll probably be on here alot "venting" alot and needing your support.

Phil or anyone else who has any advice on a taper- I have 116 Norcos (have taken 4 since 2:00 am- which is great for me- I would have normally had 10 by now). I NEED SOME ADVICE! I don't want to clean up this morning and the house is a wreck since my one year old can climb out of her crib and desroy things...I am going to have to make myself get up and get going. Oh and my father called wanting to talk- they sense that something is up. I don't think I have the heart to tell them though- I think I will let them think I am tapering off my sub. It would break their hearts. I suck as a daughter, huh? I have disappointed them one too many times.

Take care ya'll- thanks for your help. I know I may be choosing a path that some of you disagree with, but, I have to try what I feel like is going to be the easiest. I hope ya'll don't fuss at me too bad! :)

I hope you, Spark, feel better today! Heather, thanks for your advice! Banker, continued success on your journey to a healthy life! If I forgot anyone, I am just tired and starting to cry...so let me go.


12-31-2003, 08:02 AM
It's o.k... you can do it. Your reasons for choosing the hydros make sense and we are all behind you. Hey, I was thinking about you on my way to work today and thought about something that might also work. If you husband had FULL control of all of the credit cards, that would also eliminate you ordering online. The $$ issue had a lot to do with me quitting because I could not continue spending all of the money. If you don't have the money to spend, the only other way you can get them is through your docs and I would consider calling them and telling them that you've had an allergic reaction to hydro and not to give you that anymore... Just an idea. That's what I did to my Gyno so I couldn't get anymore from him. My other doc, I simply told the truth to and that was a horrible experience... admitting to someone that you've lied to them. It was horrible! Anyway, I got through it though and you will get through all of this too. I'm VERY proud of you for doing this without having to be on Sub. People who just stop abusing without sub/meth are amazing to me and I have so much respect for. The sub has been REALLY easy for me to stop so I don't feel like I've accomplished very much. Again, i'm alot happier though. Anyway, one years old and climbing out of the bed? What are you doing to do? My 18 month old doesn't climb out yet... Thank goodness. I'd be in trouble! Keep up the wonderful work!!!! I know you can do it and remember what everyone says... take it an hour at a time if you have to.

12-31-2003, 09:17 AM

I just read you post and certain parts of this really bothered me.
So we went on sub at about the same time.
I'm not sure why you went off sub and back on a hydro binge. Could you explain more of that (or maybe you did, I just haven't read the full thread yet).

OK, then you got re-upset after getting back on the sub because you feel you are going from one addiction to another. Is there any possible way that you can look at this switchover from a positive perspective rather than a negative?
I used to look at this (and still do sometimes, Michelle) just like you.
It's going to be tough to withdraw from or get off, so what's the point.
I'm still a slave to a drug.
And especially reading alot of posts on here lately; the fear and anxiety of knowing this.
Is it possible NOT to worry about the future with suboxone? If it's working for you, helping you in the long run, gotten you away from taking 300 pills in such a short time, I can only see that as a good thing.
Also, try to remember that everyone's chemistry is different. Some may have a very bad time getting off suboxone, others not so bad. It varies about as much as those either getting sick or not when they first start suboxone!
It's not too predictable.
But even if you're facing horrible withdrawals next year - well that's next year and if you spend 365 days worrying about the day you're going to stop, it's counterproductive.
I try and think positively right now - it's a new year. I'm not chasing pills. I have an appointment with my Dr. in an hour (soon it will be monthly if i want it to be). So that's one issue, and it's an issue that's increasing your anxiety.

2nd, is there anyway you can find another sub Dr. I think your Dr. is being very unreasonable in conflicting with your own psychiatrist and not allowing you to take xanax. YES, xanax and the benzos are very addictive, and whether you abuse them or not, you will ppossibly have worse withdrawals coming off that, than you would with suboxone!! But why do you have to fix something it it ain't broke??? You are being prescribed xanax for a medically necessary reason, and first for your Dr. to tell you it's illegal to combine with xanax - that's a lie! It's not appropriate for a Dr. to lie to his patient. But even if he knows it's not illegal, it's easy to see that he will not prescribe both to you.

We're actually in such similar positions, except noone is pressuring me to get off klonopin. All I got from my sub Dr. was a warning that if I take too many klonopin, it can be very sedating (which I've learned) but 1-3/day he said nobody has ever had a problem except if they were taken in in mass amounts and sub. A few fatalities.

It also bothers me that your Dr. has told you that xanax is the most addictive subsance and they should be banned. That is a bit judgmental don't you think? A Dr., a psychiatrist is prescribing them to you and I'll be he know more medications, in general, than the sub Dr. And it does not sound like you're addicted to the xanax, if you stick to taking them as prescribed by your Dr. Only you know that. There are alot of addictive substances in the world; should everything be banned? Perhaps food should be banned.

I don't now, I'm in an aftercare treatment program, taking suboxone, taking klonopin, talking openly about it amongst some very experienced Drs. counselors, psychiatrists, addictionologists, and noone sees any red flags here. They all see that I'm doing really well, and I feel really well, in general.

Ok, so just because sub will be hard to get off, does that mean that there is no point to the suboxone. I don't think I have to go into a long thing about all the benefits of sub, where you are now, and where you were then. Pretend - pretend that in the future that getting off suboxone will be do-able and manageable.

Your Dr. wants to put you in a detox center to detox from what - both? or just the xanax? I'm sorry, but to me it seems that this Dr. is creating more problems for you than you really need right now. No, treatment centers are not really bad at all. I would recommend being them depending upon what you are detoxing from - at least for a little while. But, my opinion is still, find another suboxone Dr. Give it a chance for a little while. Try to stop worrying about it for a little while. You've only been oon it a short while (like me). And don't worry about taking your xanax - as needed.

Perhaps you're upset with your husband for letting this Dr. convince him that the best thing for you to do is what this Dr. says. No, I'm no Dr. but I think you could find a Dr. that will work with you - not against you.

Now I'll read the rest of the thread. I apologize for talking so much but this Dr. irks me and he's upsetting Michelle instead of helping her.


12-31-2003, 09:24 AM

Why are you weaning yourself off of the suboxone now. Are you trying to quit on your own and figure out the tapering on your own thinking that it will solve at least 1/2 of your problems?

Please try and find a new sub Dr. Explain honestly what you have been going through.

And don't worry about having to get off the xanax, period. In fact, don't worry about having to get off anything immediately. It is NOT a good time for you to cut down on anything IMO, the xanax or the suboxone.

IMO, all you need is a Dr. who will allow you to take what your psychiatrist prescribes (have you Psych. write a note as to why it is importnat for you to continue to take low doses of xanax).

I understand why you are feeling despair right now, I really do. If your Dr. was putting the pressure on me as he is on you, I'd be feeling the same exact way. Scared and despairing.

Please try and find another sub Dr. Don't mention it to him so he won't just cut you off immediately. Look around. Do some interviews. Meanwhile, don't worry. Don't stop either medication



12-31-2003, 09:39 AM
Ok, just finished the thread, pretty heavy duty.
I'm sorry, I disagree with you plan of action.
gonna say what I see.
You're going back and forth with what you're going to do.
first it's a quick tapere with the suboxone you have left.
Then it's you decided to detox with hydro.
There's a right way and a wrong way to detox from substances.
From i've heard, detoxing with hydro is not the right way.
how many people here have told you that it screws with your head by going back and forth.
Mostly I agree with bodymechanic-find a dr. that you CAN work with and do things properly and under medical supervision.
You don't need to be hospitalized to detox off of sub.
You need a good taper plan, that is very very slow, and so far I've never heard of anyone going into detox to detox off of suboxone.
I don' believe they even have an in-patient protocol to detox off of suboxone.
As for xanax, if you wan to get off that because it's made your life unmanageable, with or w/o the suboxone.
Detox in a hospital for benzos for a week is sufficient. You won't feel great afterward for awhile, but for the acute detox, there's no way you need to say anywhere 3-4 months!

Anyway, again, bodymechanics advice, find a Dr. you can work with. Philster and all of us want to help and support you but none of us are Drs. And in your case I think because you are dealing with 2 addictive substances - you need a Dr. preferably one that will let you take suboxone AND xanax and then if YOU want, you can get off of both of them (if that's what you choose) ONE at a time.


12-31-2003, 09:49 AM
I could have written that post about perfectionism! Oh - it hit right home to me. A perfectionist and a people pleaser - that was me to a t! And I still have to fight it and just accept that I am just like everyone else - just human and full of human frailities! All I can do is my best within limits.
So - dont be too hard on yourself.
I am not going to give you any advice about tapering and getting off opiates and benzos. That is for you to decide and you are getting plenty of advice here about all that.
I just want to say that I agree totally with you about going into an institution. I was threatened with that too - but could not bear the thought of leaving my kids for so long. And - after all - what was to stop me leaving the institution after months and just using again? It comes from within yourself - you can do it at home - I dont think for one second that going into a detox/rehab centre will do anything except leave you poorer financially. You have to make the decision to do this for you. Going into a detox centre will not do this for you. Perhaps you could come to some agreement with your husband about the situation .................
And again I would say to you that you cannot do this alone. I went to AA and got wonderful support and the tools to help be cope etc. You have to find something and people who suit you. An addiction group/AA/NA - whatever - but you need other people. And not on the net - it is not enough - you need full human contact. People will help you get thro those difficult days of withdrawal - just one day at a time.
Michelle - never forget that you are not weak or bad - you are a wonderful human being - there is only one person in the world like you! You can take control of your life again and fulfill your role as mother/wife and whatever else in life you want to do. You are at perhaps the most important crossroad in your life. Look on it as a challenge. You can and will do it.
So - Michelle - dont waste time anymore in thinking about it - just do it - you will never ever regret it!
I am here if you ever want to talk.

12-31-2003, 10:21 AM
hi michelle-
hope your day is better today. there are a couple in okla. my hubby was in one for 28 days when he was a teenager and a good friend of mine just got back after 90 days. the one my husband was at was extemely hard core but he said it worked as long as you wanted it.
i hope you get your sub dr probs worked out and have a great new year. the only advise i can give you is don't get down on yourself. you are a good person. being the perfectionist wannabe myself, it has been hard for me to come to terms with accepting me for who i am. the only person who expects me to be perfect is me. i set unrealistic goals and expectations for myself and beat myself up when i can't get them. but, you know, life goes on. i can either wallow in the self pity and selfish feelings and get drunk, or i can accept things as they are handed to me for what they are and be content and happy. today, i choose the latter. also, remember, you can start your day over at any time.
tons of hugs for today!!!!!
laney :bouncing:

John 808
12-31-2003, 01:18 PM
Hey ya'll,

Murph, you were having yourself a time there with all that posting! :) I appreicate it more than you know, seriously! Thank you and to you again, Yinsky. You are right in that I have got to "ligthen up" on myself!

Well, after reading all of your posts and talking with my father (I did end up talking with him and after receiving his full support and help) I decided to stick with the sub. I know it sounds like I am being wishy-washy, ya'll just bear with me as I have been severly confused and depressed. I only took 4 Norco's and have not taken anything else and will not take the sub until withdrawals set in. From then, I will begin to taper off the sub. I talked to another addictionalogist today and he said he would not continue my sub and encouraged me to enter a detox program. So, that just re-affirmed I am going to taper off. I am ready to be pill free....then, I will deal with my depression issues. I don't know if the Lexapro is helping (been on nine months) or it may once I am off of everything.

So you guys, I have about 40 eight mg tablets left. I am sure for the next three or four days, I will have to take it every day because I took those 4 Norco's (by the way, THEY HAVE BEEN FLUSHED.) Atleast tapering with the sub, my liver will stay intact- hopefully. I am going to continue my Xanax for right now- there is NO issue with abuse with that. I take half of what my doctor prescribes me to. I do plan to taper off of that when the time is right.

I think alot of my problems stem from depression- had it bad after my babies were born and before I ever started abusing. So, let me get off everything and get this depression in tow and maybe I can begin a happy, healthy life.

I cannot tell you guys how determined I am to do this. I love my children more than life itself and (all of you may disagree) but they are reason enough alone to stop this vicious cylce.

MARK MY WORDS, I WILL BEAT THIS! I WILL GO DOWN KICKING AND SCREAMING BEFORE I LET THIS HAPPEN TO ME AGAIN! Bear with me, and Spark, if your reading, how would you handle the sub taper. Any advice is much appreciated.

Thanks to all of you for your concern. I am going to get my life back and with your help. God bless,

12-31-2003, 02:28 PM
Yeah!!! I'm so glad you flushed them! Remember, they are poison to you! That's the way I try and look at them. I'm so, so happy that you are so determined and have your mind made up. I wouldn't worry about Xanax... you're not addicted to them. I definitely need mine and I can relate with you about that! I have a feeling that 2004 is going to be a wonderful year for ALL of us here trying to beat this disease. You just made my day by saying all of the things you did and I'm SO happy you flushed them. That's some MAJOR will power. See, you said you didn't have any but look at you! :-) VERY proud. Have a wonderful evening and a happy new year!

To everyone else - Sadsister, Murphy, Chef, and especially Spark (I know I'm forgetting everyone else) but be careful tonight and have a wonderful new year.

12-31-2003, 02:35 PM
Michelle, you give me so much motivation. I have major depression issues too--my whole life, but have also had crises that have set me back (suicide of my first husband) so I have alot I need to continually work on. That's what scares me the most is having to face those issues when I am off the pills, but I am on Prozac and hopefully that will help. I used to be on Wellbutrin too and that was great, but then I had a seizure. thank you for your openness--it helps me more than you know.


12-31-2003, 05:35 PM
Hi Michelle :)

I guess i got carried away posting before. First i didn't read the thread so I just responded from the gut, then I did read the thread and had so much more to say. But just to let you know, I posted so much because I really CARE about you and what you are going through. If I had a medical degree, and would come over there and work with you to your advantage, not create more & more anxiety in you. Anyway, I do care, that's why i wrote so much.

Also, Sadsister, Murphy, Chef, and Sparko my friend, you all take very good care and it's hellpful knowing I have a little family in cyberspace who I can share my feelings and feel open enough to share them with me. Let's all have a a very good year - with or without suboxone.


John 808
12-31-2003, 06:52 PM
Murphy, your posts really helped me today...I hope you didn't think I was being "ugly." Actually, I just got a little "tickled" that you kept posting- I know that you care and it means more than you know to me. Please, please let me know if I can ever help you in any way. Sounds like you are doing good and I am so proud for you. I hope 2004 brings you the very best! :)

Banker, yep, down the potty they went- boy, what I could have bought with that $100- oh well. It may be a little harder in the long run being that the sub stays in your system longer- I have no idea what I am in store for with withdrawals, but I am not going to think about that right now. I just know in a couple of months I want to be off everything except my Xanax and Lexapro- we'll deal with that later. One step at a time! I hope you have a great and safe night and best wishes for 2004...you deserve nothing short of the very best!

Rosietee, post me anytime you just want to talk. I know exactly how you feel. Me, too, with the depression. As a teenager, I was real insecure and basically was a big time "follower" (don't know why I didn't get hooked on drugs or alcohol back then- never really did them except dring occasionally) but I followed the crowd. That led to trying to be perfect as an adult maybe to cover up some of my insecurities- I don't know. I just know after I had my first child in 1998, depression kicked in bad and then I turned around and had another child in 1999 and mind you, they were both premature and very sick babies. I was a basket case. That's when my pain pill abuse began- after my son was born. It has been a ugly cycle since then. I had another child in 2000, so chalk another one up to bigger and badder depression. I never really gave my hormones a chance to settle down in all this, too. I feel for you and am terribly sorry you have had to deal with a suicide- I know that makes things ten times worse. I am here for you whenever you need me- it just helps to talk with someone that you know is dealing with the same thing you are. The anominity(sp?) is nice, because you can really spill your guts and not have to worry about anything- ya know? Just know I am here for you and I will probably be on here posting alot here in the next few weeks as I am about to begin this taper. My prayers are with you and hang in there. Take care,


P.S. Spark, Ric, Lisa, Heather, Phil, Chef, Banker, Murph, Yinsky, all you guys- have a great New Year's Eve and may God bless your upcoming year with all that you deserve. I have a special place in my heart for each of you! (If I left out someone..I am sorry..trying to type with a one year old in my lap :) )

12-31-2003, 07:40 PM
michelle, thanx for the prayers, just had to lol because I have a 1 year old in my lap too! happy new year-i'll post more tomorrow. Trying to decide when to tell husband.

luv you guys,

01-01-2004, 05:25 AM
Hey Michelle---I haven't been on the "boards" in a couple of days and your post caught my eye. I seem to be ALOT like you, having the same issues with my weight (I only weight 110 too, but FREAK if i think my size one jeans aren't fitting right) those dam pills seemed to make me "Super-MOM" for my 14, 13, 12 and 2 year old. Well in reality, they made me a very, very depressed person. Look back about 2 months ago at some of my posts, full of hopelessness and dispair. You've GOT to get determined and stick with it. No matter what....i can so relate because my hubby was threatening detox and believe me I DO NOT WANT TO GO THERE AGAIN!!! I was treated in 1996 for alcohol and cocaine addiction and was only in until the physical symptoms were gone and then attended a very intense out-patient program for close to a year.
I just knew that i had to do this on my own. You seem to be swayed on either staying on sub or tapering off of the vikes. I have never been on sub, so i have no idea what the w/d are like. What ever you decision, i will give you the support you need....i do not work so i am able to hop on and off the computer all thru-out the day. Just stay determined and i know you will accomplish this. We really sound so much alike that it is scary :eek:
So as we start this new year, you have a goal....just take it one day, one minute at a time if you have to.
I never even thought about sub, because i take zoloft and xanax at night to help me sleep. Once in a great while i will have to take the xanax during the day, because i get massive anxiety attacks. I don't care what people say about the xanax, i never abuse it and it really helps me when i get myself worked up. You are right just to worry about the pain meds now and everything else will just fall into place.
So, Michelle, don't get so down on yourself, just make a good tapering plan and stick to it no matter what. I will be looking forward to hearing from you.
You are stronger than you know...i will pray for you.
Happy New Year....this is gonna be the year for you, Michelle.

01-01-2004, 07:16 AM
Yep - Michelle and everyone else - Lisa has said it all - 2004 is going to be a great year for us all!
Happy New Year everyone

John 808
01-01-2004, 07:30 AM
Lisa and Yinsky,

Thanks for the replies. I have no other choice than to taper with the sub because I flushed the hyrdo's. Lisa, the sub is a form of an opitae the binds to the receptors in your brain and tries to heal some of the damage all those pain meds have done. You do not feel "high" on it and it helps some with depression. My concern about the sub is, since it is a form of an opiate, I will experience withdrawals and it stays in your system alot longer than the hydro's, so I am unsure of what I will be facing when I run out in the next few weeks. But, it doesn't matter, this has to and will be done! Bottom line! So, ya'll bear with me the next few weeks- I'll probably be experiencing a wide range of emotions, but you in particular have motivated me so much! In discussions with my husband about the hospital versus doing this by myself things got "heated" and I was crying and I said, "I can do this...Lisa did it!" He was like, "Who is Lisa?" :) But, you have convinced me it can be done!

I gotta scoot, we are headed to my grandmother's. Check in with ya'll tomorrow. Hope everyone had a safe and sober night last night and God bless each of you in 2004,

01-01-2004, 08:02 AM

So fill me in on where you are with the pills. What strength are you taking? How many each day? How often or at what interval? That would be a good start.

I'll help you all I can!


John 808
01-01-2004, 08:28 PM
Hey Phil,

I have about 40 eight mg tablets of subutex left and about 40 .5mg tablets of straight buprenorhpine (sp?). I took 16 mgs last night and 12 mgs today.

I actually started the sub in late October. Started at 8mgs for the first week and then dropped to 4mgs for the next three or four weeks. I craved so bad that whole time (don't think I was on a high enough dose???) and eventually stopped the sub and went on a little hydro binge (well, I shouldn't say little- went through 300 pills in about 2 and a half weeks). In doing that, I think I really messed up because I have been a wreck since then. My husband went to talk to my addictionalogist because he was so concerned- that is when the whole issue of going to the hospital or tapering off came up. The reason I have to taper off is- my sub doctor WILL NOT keep me in the program if I continue to take my Xanax. I have anxiety BAD and feel like I need that more, in addition to an anti-depressant, Lexapro, so after running into a brick wall with another addictionalogist (he also wanted hospitalization), I concluded that I will taper with what I have left and BEAT THIS THING!

I can taper down pretty easily to 4mgs and even take it every other day. I will just have to find some meetings or something to help me mentally. I don't acutally know how to taper with this and what I will be faced with when I am finished. Spark's situation with it has me a little concerned as he had a pretty rough time coming of the sub. What do you suggest? Thank you for your help- you are always the "go to taper guy!" :) (A compliment!)

Thanks, Phil!

01-02-2004, 05:08 AM
Hi Michelle, I am so sorry to hear you are having such a hard time with the Sub. I want you to know that you are in my prayers along with your family. Stay strong, you can do this, I have faith you can! Rehab wasalso hard for me, I couldnt stand to be away from my kids! Thats probably one of the reasons it didnt work well for me.

01-02-2004, 06:53 AM
Hi to all - how is everyone? Michelle - what's going on? How is your taper plan? You sound so much like me about being mad at the drugs. You remind me of little 'ol Scarlett. It's great! I know your moods are going to be up and down - Mine were BAD at first. Remember, one day I was LOVING the sub and the next I hated it and myself. We are all here for you and you just type away whenever you need to/and or want to. We need to here from you!!!!

Kimbee - What was your experience w/Rehab? How did you end up on Sub? Can you tell us your story when you have time? Also, do you have children, husband, etc? Are you still hanging in there on the Sub? I am still at about 8 mgs and feel really, really good. I just have no plans to get off of it. I had my doc appt. this a.m. but my 5 year old is sick and I can't go. I only have 4 more pills yet so I HAVE to go on Tues, no matter what. That kind of stinks... that I can't just have it called in but I think this time he's probably going to give me more to last longer. I think he's glad I'm on it 'cause he knows I'll have to stay on it a long time and that makes him more $$ but I still don't care. It's still amazing and has really saved my life right now. How many mgs do you take? Let me know and take care...

01-02-2004, 07:21 AM

I'm not sure I can help you taper with the Sub. I'm rock solid with hydro and could probably help with methadone but Sub is an area I haven't gone or read much about in regards to tapering. Methadone is such a different animal as its half life is so-o-o long that you have to go extra slow. Rule of thumb is a 5-10% taper over a 3-5 day time span.

======================================== ===================
OK I just read the half life of the main component of Sub (buprenorphine) is 20-60 hrs. Very similar to methadone, which means you have to go extra slow.

OK I found this schedule for a person tapering off 80 mg of methadone. I know itís not Sub but it has a similar half life so we can try a similar approach

For the meth WD,

step 1 - decrease the total daily dosage by 5mg each 3 days until down to 45mgs/day.

Step 2 - decrease the total daily dosage by 2.5mg each 3 days until down to 20mgs/day.

Step 3 - decrease the total daily dosage by 2.5 mg each week until done.

This should provide a mild taper.

If you use this logic with the Sub you are on and your taking 4mg per day, start something along these lines:

step 1 - decrease the total daily dosage by .25mg each 3 days until down to 2 mgs/day.

Step 2 - decrease the total daily dosage by .25mg each week until done.

Slightly different as you canít probably get a .125 pill or cut a pill down to this size. If you use a pill cutter you should be able to get the correct dosage for this. I hope this helps but again this is a bit unfamiliar territory so itís a learn and go program Iím afraid.


John 808
01-02-2004, 10:44 AM
Thanks Phil- you are such a help to all of us! How long have you been clean? I am sure your "story" is on the board somewhere, but you have been here alot longer than I have. I hope you have a great, new year. God bless you and everything you do!

Hey Banker, doing okay today. I imagine I will be okay until I have to start reducing the sub. Right now, I am just going to get "settled" for a couple of weeks. I appreciate so much your help through all this and you know I will need it even more in the near future. :) My hubby is home sick with the flu and is calling me- so gotta go.


01-02-2004, 11:20 AM
michelle when your kids are all grown and have kids of their own and your a grandmother you will look back at this addiction and just be so proud of yourself for having won. your children are treasures. it will be difficult to hold back tears. i know you can do this thing.

John 808
01-02-2004, 12:44 PM
You are so right, Roc! I know people say you have to get clean for yourself and I do agree, but to think of having to go to a hospital so far away for three or four months and not see my children....to me, that is reason enought to quit! That is how much I love them. I appreciate your kind words and hope this new year brings all that you deserve! :)

Take care,

01-02-2004, 03:17 PM
OK Michelle you asked about my story so here it is again, nothing big compared to most but for me it was not so good lol
======================================== ====================

It all started back about mid 1999 for me. I was a runner, ran about 4-5 marathons a year, about 50-65 miles a week, nothing special just did it for exercise and to compete with myself. Well after 20+ years of running it finally caught up with my back and I was diagnosed with herniated discís. I tried all sorts of treatments, epidural steroid injections, muscle relaxers, non opiate pain meds, etc.. Nothing helped and the pain was becoming intractable. To the point of not being able to walk well, tie my shoes, put my pants on and so on. Finally I started taking 5mg vicís and that helped. I took it as prescribed and all was well for several months. Well I noticed once that when I accidentally took 2 pills by mistake (took one, then another when I forgot I took the first one, duh) well I got this warm fuzzy feeling just consume my body. It was great, a buzz unlike I ever experienced. Then the next day no hangover. I smoked Pot when I was in college but the high from Pot was no where as good as opiates.

Well I got to the point where my back started coming around so I stock piled the vicís, soon I had enough for many weekends of fun. I started taking them just on every other Friday night like it was the weekend martini. Then I started taking them every Friday, not a bad deal and never withdrawal. Then I went to every Friday and Saturday, still no withdrawal. Then I upíd the strength to 10mgs pills (Norco 10/325) So I got to taking 20mgs on Friday and Saturdays every weekend. Then it was 25mgs, then 30mgs Fri-Sun. Then it was 40 mgs Fri-Sun. This is when come Tues Iíd get very mild withdrawal, upset stomach, diarrhea, chills/hot flashes, nothing bad, but uncomfortable (no where near full withdrawalís) that would last until Thurs. Come Friday back at the pills. Well this finally escalated to not just weekends but every day. Once I crossed from weekends to every day I was lost. I was taking about 40 mgs every day, 20mgs in the morning and 20mgs at night. I finally got so scared I couldnít stop and the guilt was so awful that I finally went cold turkey from 40mgs per day. It was not pleasant but not too bad. The usual restless legs, chills, hot flashes, aches, crawling skin, sleep problems sour stomach and so on. But not to awful bad. The worst was day 2-4, at about day 7 or 8 I was almost normal. Well I lasted drug free for about 4 months before I fell off my house roof and crushed my foot. I was in a cast for the next 6 months and what did they prescribe for the pain, 10mgs Norco with a bunch of refills. Well I was off and running, followed almost the same scenario as before and how the use and consumption escalated. This time it took a real turn for the worse. I also messed up the back as well so I was seeing a Dr in my health plan who gave me 4-5 refills for 180 10mgs Norco at a time. I would stockpile what I didnít use then when I got to the every day use again I started consuming what I had stockpiled in addition to new refills. I was taking about 20 10mg Norcoís per day (10 in the morn and 10 at night) but I was going through more then I could get my hands on so my stockpile dwindled to very low quantities. Thatís when I had the Dr assign me to the pain management group and they put me on the duragesic patch 25mcg (time release fentanyl) I changed the patch every 48 hrs and it was the equivalent of taking around 15 pills a day so this was a great bargain and solution for my pill consumption. What this did is keep me from getting the withdrawals but no real buzz. Well I had them supplement the patch with the Norco 10mgs and I would get a prescription for 120/mo. That was great as this would give me the buzz I was looking for. This eventually worked itself up to where I was consuming more then I could get so I had them up the patch to 50mcg, then 75mcg then finally 100mcg. I was also taking about 6 10mgs Norco each day on top. I found out this was the equivalent of taking around 500mgs of Hydro per day. Well I got scared that I would never be able to get off this train and the guilt was so overwhelming. I was also terrified of withdrawal so that kept me taking all the drugs longer then I would have expected me to take. I finally started melting down and freaking out. I came very close to admitting myself into rehab detox, but I was too scared, even with the assurance of meds to assist in the detox process. In my mind coming off 40mgs per day was not fun, but coming off over 10X greater amount would be death in my mind. Iíd never be able to do cold turkey. I finally confessed to my PCP (Primary Care Physician). I did my homework on the NET and found out from various sources how to taper. I documented my process and schedule and presented it to my Dr, he was impressed and we came to agreement that we would follow the plan. The plan was aggressive in comparison to a normal taper so for the next 8 weeks as I tapered I suffered through mild withdrawal every stinking day of the 8 weeks (like having the flu every day, no let up). We agreed that if I cheated the plan I would have to stop the taper and go the rehab route. Well I stuck to plan and suffered every day. I finally got to the last week of 2002 and I was at about 20mgs per day (down from 500mgs per day) Iím the impatient type and I knew I was so close and could not taper any longer, so I talked to my Dr and did more NET searching and found all the drugs used in an inpatient detox program. I documented the types and strengths and schedule for a 5 day detox. Once again he agreed with my plan and prescribed the meds for me. On 12/31/02 I took my last pill and implemented the at home detox program I created. Well the next 5 days were not very nice but I got through it. It was nearly 3 weeks before I started to feel like my old self, and it was almost 6 weeks before I had energy and mental state back to near normal. When I hit the 8 week mark for drug free I felt really good. Every month after I feel better and better. Now Iím almost 11 months drug free and my life is wonderful and I really donít think I have ever felt better. Iím so happy itís too hard to describe. My wife of almost 28yrs is glad to have her old husband back and my two girls (20 & 17) really love the old dad being back. They knew what I went through as I kept them in the loop (up front and honest), it also scared the hell out of them and they are really drug aware and resistant to follow my path. In the scheme of things my trials are not nearly as long or difficult as others but I have taken a few paths to addiction and a few different paths to drug free, so I can honestly speak from experience. I was also 45 when this happened in my life so drug addiction in not age discriminate, we are all at risk no matter what age. I bottom line is I did not think this would happen to me.


John 808
01-02-2004, 05:58 PM
Thanks Phil for sharing your story with me! Congratulations on almost a year of sobriety- that is wonderful. I wish I were in your shoes- one day I will be, I just know it! I have a hard time imagining that I will ever feel normal and even feel good being off the pills. I seem to think, the "fun" is about to be over forever. Even though the lying, the guilt, the doc-shopping, etc. is MISERY, I cannot convince myself things will be good one day. I am doing this because I want to and because of my children- I don't want them to grow up without a healthy mother. I'll take your word for it that things will be great again. :) Thanks again for sharing and helping- you are such an asset to this board!

Take care,

01-02-2004, 07:47 PM
Thanks Phil for sharing your story with me! Congratulations on almost a year of sobriety- that is wonderful. I wish I were in your shoes- one day I will be, I just know it! I have a hard time imagining that I will ever feel normal and even feel good being off the pills. I seem to think, the "fun" is about to be over forever. Even though the lying, the guilt, the doc-shopping, etc. is MISERY, I cannot convince myself things will be good one day. I am doing this because I want to and because of my children- I don't want them to grow up without a healthy mother. I'll take your word for it that things will be great again. :) Thanks again for sharing and helping- you are such an asset to this board!

Take care,
Hang in there. You are such a special person and great mom.

01-03-2004, 05:55 AM
Hey Michelle---How are you doing today??? I have been thinking about you, i remember being in your same shoes..knowing i had to get straight but it just seemed virtually impossible. I know it is going to be rough with your kids and hubby but you can do it, i know you can. Keep me posted, vent whatever, you have to, just make your goal and stick to it. Read Gregg's post on how much better he feels just 6 days off of pills. Michelle, you are an awesome, caring mom and person and i am praying for you to receive the strength you need to get thru this. Your children are still young enough where they won't really even realize what is going on, so don't feel guilty when you aren't feeling in tip top shape. Get lots of rest and prepare your body by eating well and taking vitamins. I will check back later....

01-03-2004, 06:19 AM
Michelle - just want to add my twopence worth! I agree with that Lisa says above. Dont forget that getting off opiates (even by way of c/t) - by whatever means you choose - is neither dangerous or life threating - just very unpleasant. In the scale of things -and looking at Greg - what is 6/7 days when you view the big picture? I went c/t - could not bear the thought of slow torture! (And I was so fed up with being sick - and - I couldnt bear the thought of more weeks of sickness while I tapered - especially looking after my 4 young children! I just jumped and never ever regreted it) After the first 3/4 days - it all starts to lift and get better - its like a miracle. Whatever you choose - we all support you in your efforts - so, Michelle, just get going!!!!! The time to talk is done with....... action now?
You have a big heart - be courageous - go for it now!
Your kids will finally get their mum back again! Now - doesnt that thought just spur you on? This time next week - you could be drug free and getting "high" on life! Think about it! Too much time already wasted on giving opiates too much of a place in your life. Time now for real living. I wish you all the best.........

01-03-2004, 08:36 AM
Things will be better. You will see that once your head is free of all of those chemicals, things are o.k. You just HAVE to make the decision if you REALLY want to be done with the pills. If you want them...that is your decision. If you dont want them....QUIT taking them. I was on the same amount of Norco as you were, and yes, the detox was GOD awful, but I had made the decision that I would never put myself through the hell of a detox again. My kids deserve better and I deserve better. I did it. I am now over 2 months clean and I have never felt better in my entire life. I am serious. I have a new outlook on life. I used to never believe people when they said "I feel better than I have ever felt" after getting sober I thought it was a load of CRAP.......I just wasn't there yet. I had to go through the rest of my CRAP to get there. When it comes to drugs...nothing is instant except for the high. You have to think of it this way, it took you three years to get where you are right now. It is not going to be over night to get you back to "normal" When you are addicted to ANYTHING you always want "Instant Gratification" but it doesnt work that way in the world of reality.
Trust me...do this detox and get it done and OVER with. That way you have the rest of your life with your kids.


01-03-2004, 08:54 AM

I have just spent the last 1/2 hour reading this thread . I am soooooo sorry that I have been so busy that I have been away from here. My hubby was on vaca and it has been crazy. Any way. I read all your posts. I truely feel for you. I understood everything you posted regarding having to be the best at everything. I am 37 years old and used to be the same way. I have 3 kids 13,10,9. Michelle, I almost went into detox.
Where I am, It would not of been that bad. But, the counseling class I went to was the extension to the hospital that the "dtox" group would go to after being released. The good thing that I saw was that the people seem to bond w/one another and hellp eachother thru. Detox here was 1-4 weeks. Michelle this is all such a viscious circle. I know you chose subox. I am on that too. I do not know if this will help you, but here is how I think about things to get me thru. I am leary about staying on this too. It has been 4 months. I want to be drug free also. This Xmas was the first one in 4 years that I did it on just subox. My kids just told me, it was the best yet!! I look at this as a "life saving drug" for me. If I stop, I could relapse anda go to jail. Jail or subox....those are my choices. You are okay w/ xanax b/c of anxiety. That is okay. If you could do everything w/the subox and not crave, wouldnt that be okay?? Maybe if you found the right dose, the subox would be okay for you. They are now using subox for depression I have read. I think it has helped me for depression also. I also think...people need meds for blood pressure, cancer, diabetics....we do not think anything of that. That is my way of thinking. This drug kept me w/my family and also helped me to get some things back in my life. Confidence, energy, a will to get back into life. Michelle, and everyone else, this is a fight for our life. We must do what ever we can to win. Subox is legal!! Michelle, I do not know where you get the vikes....I sounds like maybe on-line. I know, I have been there. It is also becoming dangerous to do so. We never know what will happebn next. No matter where you are getting them, I am sure it is hard to keep on a the supply. I know, in your posts, you are past this and have made a choice for the subox, :), I am just remarking b/c I have been gone for awhile. Thank goodness you have a family that is there to help you. Chin up, chest out. How ever you succeed, I am behind you and I am listening to you and really understand you. I wish you the best!!!! Shell

Michelle, I just read the post unde "got to say something" where you stated that you had to take the xanax due to anxiety and it was a life savor. That is how I think of suboxone. YOu are okay w/taking the xanax, as you should be, it has helped you. If the subox helps you to "stay Clean" so be it. IF you find the right dose, and the cravings go away and the energy stays and blah blah blah, then, good for you! Please, do not be so hard on your self. Give yourself a BIG pat on the back! My hubbie was just reading some of this. He just said "wow, this is like reading our lives" Sometimes I think it is good to have our significant other read this. He said it really helps him to understand even more. Shell

John 808
01-03-2004, 09:43 AM
Thanks nomore and Shell,

I know this thread has gotten a little long and intense. By problem, Shell, is the sub doctors here in my state won't let me take the sub and the Xanax and I truly have severe anxiety. So, they said I had to choose the sub or the anxiety/depression medicine??? That is why I am tapering off the sub. I can't see myself not being treated for my depression and anxiety. UUGGHH!! I can do this though- it may be rough for a few days, but I am determined as I don't want to be put in the hospital for months away from my children!!! You guys just support me when I hit the rought spots and am on here feeling like it is the end of the world- okay? Thanks to you two!

Take care and congratulation to your sobriety,

01-04-2004, 09:54 AM

Although the thread is gotten long, it just shows how many of us really understand and want to support you. YES!!! you can do it. One day at a time. What a shame, to have a catch 22 w/the meds. It is a shame, thru-out my readings, I have read that some sub docs allow xanax w/sub at low doses. I truely hope everything works out for you. Shell