Discussions that mention methadone

Addiction & Recovery board


I've been thinking of tapering, so I wrote Phil and will see what he comes up with, in the meantime, I've been reading about meth vs. sub, and I made the call to our local clinic that offers methadone and subutex (bupronephrine sp???), and after talking to the director, he says that given my length of use, that the methadone would be the way for me to go...he also said it takes a little longer, and the subutex is good for those who have used for shorter times, but the cost of the sub is $400-$500/mth. vs. $190/mth. for the meth. However, the meth takes longer...

Part of their program is that you are given a counselor to talk to throughout the ordeal, a medical doctor that checks vitals, etc., and no lines, or waits, and lots of discretion. I asked him if the meth would give me a "high," and he said it probably would initially, so I said "well, being an addict, then wouldn't I be tempted to increase my doses?" "Very good question," he answered, but that is where your counselor comes in...so it doesn't sound like it's very regulated, and I think it's doled out in monthly quantities, yet requires regular check-ins. It's very close to my house, and I'm in a working situation that would give me the time to do this, but...

I just don't know, if 120 isn't enough to taper off, and I know I can't do it c/t, then what? I've read both good and bad about the meth, especially Seabee57, but if what this guys says is true, then maybe it could work for me?

Well, after talking to him, and then checking on my "delivery," which I get tomorrow, I know I won't be able to flush 120 of them away...what happens if you mix hydro with meth or sub? I know in my heart of hearts that the right thing to do would be to get rid of the 120 despite the cost of them, but if I go talk to the clinic director on Monday, I will be honest and tell him about the 90 or so I'd have left by then and see what he says.

My mind says "try the methadone way," but something scares me about that and something scares me about even going in to the clinic and something scares me about getting the 120 and something scares me about the Sub (probably the "high" blocker), and now I want to take the call back, the post to Phil back, get my order and just carry on as usual. Irrational, I know...but I am so scared of saying "I'm ready..."

Thoughts on the methadone, the subutex, or a taper? And no holds barred, either...lay it on me!

Worrying and waiting,

DallasAlice
DalAL;

Don't worry about the erratic though process, its part of the deal. Not to worry about asking for a taper, its a free charge lol

If I was you I would forgo the taper, and do the Sub. Not Methadone but Sub. That’s just my gut and what I've read. The Methadone I think requires you to visit a clinic every day where the Sub is by prescription and you don't have to visit a clinic each day. This to me is a big convenience and a pain to have to go to a clinic each time I needed the methadone. If I'm wrong someone just correct me please as the methadone treatment may have changed since the introduction of Sub. Also the Methadone I think has a longer half life then the Sub and it would be more challenging to taper of the Meth vs. the Sub, although each having a long half life will be a challenge. But you may never want or need to get off the Sub (i.e. Our friend VeryLucky and others) Its very much like a treatment such as for diabetes, its just something you may need for the rest of your life and there’s no harm no foul in that.

Hope that helps, Sub is my vote.

My thoughts and prayers are with you as you work your way back. I'm also proud of you for not giving up, remember you can't win if you give up. As long as you try eventually you will succeed!

your Pal DalAl

phil
I am on suboxone and it is wonderfull, and as far and the information that i have on sub, it is used all opiate type and lengths of addiction. I have herd that if your addiction requires more that 60 mg of methadone you may have to taper some before starting or, go on meth. I am curious if the reason you think that methadone is the way to go is because you may get a buzz from it? I too have had the same thoughts. You can use the lortab on methadone, some folks will say it wont work, but it does, I have personally abuse methadone and lortab at the same time. Hop down to the PM board where they prescribe the done for cp and give the tabs for break thru. The sub is very expensive but if you have had to buy street pills or internet, is it really that much more than what your paying now.

I truly you hope you make the right choice for the right reasons and not let your addiction guide you.

Teresa
Well, I am sure that you have read some posts of mine, in regards to the Methadone. I don't like it and I don't think it is the way to go. I was offered Methadone when I was coming off Heroin and I said NO. I wanted to be clean not prolong the addiction process. Withdrawals from Methadone are extremely uncomfortable. I just wanted to withdraw and get it over with. I am not familiar with sub. however, I would not suggest Methadone. I know that some people swear by it but, I can't in good concious say that would be the way to go. Methadone was prescribed to Heroin addicts to stop the increasing crime due to thier drug use. If you regulate a Heroin addicts use and keep them HAPPY they are less likely to commit crimes to get the money for drugs. It does not do anything to help us through the process. I have been told that the % of addicts that come off Methadone successfully is very low. They either stay on it for a very long time, or go back to using other drugs as it keeps as high. I am happy to hear that you are reaching out to get in the solution. You are very intelligent to weigh your options before making your recovery plan. We all have different circumstances in our lives and we need to find a plan that works for us. You are taking the first step to freedom. I'm there. :) :cool:HAd to put my sunglasses on as your life is getting brighter...lol
Hi.
I just came home from a sub clinic(live-in) and there was virtually symptom free withdrawals for 9 out of ten( I was the other 1,but I was on several other meds).
Most of the stories I have read about Methadone are loooooong drawn out re-lapse and dosage change stories.My friends been on it for weeks and weeks and keeps doing the merry go round.
DO THE SUBUTEX.
I had to flush all my lortabs,morphine,and cancel re-fills on my lortab....F them...the incredible feeling you could be having a week from now totally clean is better than any handful from your 120 could give you.I too,had "reservations" about quitting and flushing.The people on this board helped me make my decision.
e-mail me and I'll give you my Ph# and I can answer any Q's you might have.

Baseball65
Hi all,

First, thank you all for taking time away from your own addictions, struggles, recoveries, and the day-to-day activities of what we call our lives to write your thoughts, support and encouragement for me to do what I know I have to do, but can't figure out how to do it. Your compliments alone make me "high!" :)

I tend to think that the poster who said they were curious about my leaning towards the meth is because of the potential high...you're absolutely right, that's very much a part of it. Does that mean I'm not ready yet, though? That I really can't say...I'll say I'm "on the fence," and like Humpty Dumpty I will fall off one side or the other, but whatever I do, be it sub, meth, more failing attempts at tapering and c/t, that will be my first decision. If I keep on keeping on with the script I got today, and forego following through with any type of plan to stop, then I suppose that, too, is a decision...and obviously the wrong one, but a decision nonetheless, and maybe if that happens, I will be saying to myself that I'm not ready...the quandry is, I think I am ready. I am sooooo in debt, and I am so tired of trying to keep up with the facade of my "life," and although it's been 23-some years since I've been without a drug in my body, I am so very curious what life without drugs is like.

Michelle, you are in a funk right now, I know, and you haven't posted lately, but I so hope you will give me your input on the sub...didn't you have some side affects that bothered you while on it? Also, weren't your doctors telling you that you had to be off the Xanax before you could do the sub? I'm sorry if I've mixed that up with someone else...Murphy perhaps? I am wondering how you are doing as July 12th draws closer, and I hope you are out there still reading because I don't know if you know how much you really did for me that first night I posted...you literally kept me here this much longer, and I need you to know that. I was holding 210 pills in my hand and a bottle of vodka in the other and typing to you when my hands were free at the same time.

I've neglected to put much emphasis on the benzo I've been on for 15 years. I take 45 mgs. a day of Tranxene for my Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome and anxiousness, and I've tried to quit it many times, and I make it to day 5 or so, and then, oh boy...it's like every electrical switch has been turned on and every circuit in my body is being short circuited. I'm sure many of you know what I mean. The amt. of Tranxene I take is probably equivalent to taking 20 mgs. of Valium, but it's been a part of my life, too, and I don't know if I can be on it while on either the Meth or the Sub, so please anyone with the experience of opiate and benzo addiction, your input would be so appreciated. The cost of it is $120/mth. and my dr. said I will need to be on it for life. I would like to prove him wrong

Truth be told time...I did get my 120 Norcos today and have 113 left since the 9 hours they've been in my hands. I am only being honest when I say I know I will be taking them over the weekend and before I go talk to the clinic director. And if I were going to a meeting, I'd time it just right so that warm, fuzzy feeling would be hitting just about when I stand up to say whatever it is one says there, and I'm sure I'd think I was witty and charming--yet any addict would see through me instantly. Maybe that's why I think I can get away with all this until recently...non-addicts think I'm fine, and an addict would know in a heartbeat that nobody feels that perky after only 2 meals and 3 hours of sleep in two or three days. Here I am with "a jury of my peers," and that is why I spill so much because I know you know, but this jury hasn't handed me down any sentence, and you've been wonderful to me...

Sarandipity, I look at you through the eyes of Diego at his tiny bird Frida, and in your words I see you and feel your sincerity, and as the depth of a love isn't fully known until the moment of parting...I will not separate from this place.

Love you guys,

DallasAlice

p.s. Rockingham...if you see this, you said on my first post here that if I had any questions on methadone, which you thought I'd be a perfect candidate for, you'd be willing to answer whatever questions I have--well I certainly have questions now, and would love to hear from you.
Oh DallasAlice...I'm already seeing the similarities in us. I don't know a damn thing about methadone vs. sub, etc...'cause I've never gone that through that. BUT...as far as benzo's...I've been on them off and on since having my first child 8 yrs. ago. I've been on xanax (evil, evil stuff as far as I'm concerned), librium, valium, and now klonopin. I literally can't funtion without it (unless I'm pregnant, and then I'm not on anything.....mental, ya think?!). I've always been able to wean successfully off of the benzo's..even when I was taking 3 mgs. or more of klonopin or xanax. At this point, I'm not even concerned with my usage of the klonopin...I do not abuse it, but I need it to function (I have major panic attacks...and as you know....night terrors, insomnia, etc). My biggest concern has always been the drugs that I ABUSE....being the Norco's. I too would receive 120 of them...but they would barely last a week. Yes, I'm off of them now, and yes...I went cold turkey. It was a horrible experience, but I had to do it...the pills were controlling my life. Being a religious person...it's a sin to have anything control my "being" other that God, Jesus, and/or the Holy Spirit (I know, you probably don't want to hear about the religious stuff from me~ LOL!). I will say though...I did go to rehab once for the xanax....it was after my first divorce and I would take 4, 5, 6 of 'em at night and down 'em with a 6 pack of beer. After 4 months of living like that, I checked myself into rehab. Withdrawing from benzo is HELL, much worse than opiates by any means. I guess I learned my lesson, because to live...I still have to take them. I NEVER abuse them...in fact, I take less than prescribed. Mostly because I'm so scared. But once again, even since the "rehab" episode...I've tapered off of them 3 times...because of pregnancies. It wasn't hard at all then. I really don't know what point I'm trying to make here, other than I feel your pain and I so appreciate your honesty. I admire you so much...and you wouldn't be here with us if you didn't have the desire to kick this horrible addiction. I CAN be done...and I know in my heart that YOU CAN DO IT! I'm ALWAYS here for you...and I promise to check in daily....by the way, your childhood/past is SOOO similiar to mine that it's scary. I've been down that road too, hon. I promise, we can talk more later...maybe it will help us both.
DallasAlice,

I have been sitting in front of my computer trying to decide if I should even try to advise right now- being that I am NOT "out of the woods" just yet and still having a pretty rough time. But, you asked and I'll share my experiences with the subutex. Yes, I was on the it but no, I did not take it exactly as I was supposed to. I stopped the subutex and went on "hydro binges" three different times in the seven or eight months I was prescribed the sub. With that being said, my "condition" right now may be not be an accurate one, but again, will share what I am going through.

The addictionologist that prescribed the subutex to me did tell me that it was "illegal" to take the Xanax (which I was prescribed several, several months prior to seeing this doctor) while taking the sub- I still do not know if that is correct being there are people on this board who take the sub and a benzo??? I wasn't too worried about it though, because I rarely took my Xanax and felt like it wouldn't be a problem. After my refills expired, I called the doctor and asked to set up an appointment (although had seen him once throughout this and talked to him on the phone three or four times) so that I could discuss switching to the suboxone after it was suggested by some here since I still had cravings on the subutex (there is a difference between the two). His first initial question was, "Have you taken any Xanax?" knowing that I had stopped it for the most part (and had been drug tested by him), I told him once maybe every week or so when my "nerves" were really doing a number on me and he basically said I had to "join his program" for him to see me and discuss further options (which meant he wanted more $$$$$ out of me- in my opinion). I said I couldn't do that being that "his program" was four nights of week from 6:00-10:00 pm- the whole point of me going on the sub was to be at home for my family! It rubbed me the wrong way and I have never heard from him since (which appalls my current addictionologist).

Fast forward a few days and I sought help from the addictionologist I am seeing now as I was back to trying to wean myself off with Lortabs because I went into severe withdrawals from the sub. The addictionologist I see now said he will not prescribe the subutex/suboxene because from what he has seen and studied, it does more harm in the long run UNLESS one plans on staying on this for lifetime maintenance (so, AM NOT KNOCKING those who take it- if it saves there life- GREAT- seriously!)! My point was, I didn't want to be on it for lifetime- I am only 30 and wanted to be completely clean! If I had known how hard it was going to be to get off the sub, I wouldn't have gone that route, but that is beside the point now.

I had physical withdrawals for about two weeks- not as intense as hydro withdrawals- but just lingering (shakes, sweats, upset tummy, no appetite, and insomnia). But, I also felt "hopeful" and "happy." Now, after the physical withdrawals began to subside, the depression and lethargy slowly crept up on me and each day it is a HUGE battle for me- still! Granted, within all of this, I found out about this "health situation" which is probably contributing to my "worries" and depression, but the problems were starting before my bad news (which I go to the doctor for this Wednesday).

I know that I have been quiet lately, but I am just not real good right now and would hate to be "gloomy" for those who are doing well and would hate to give anyone "bad advice." Which I may be doing now- forgive me if I am! I just don't want you or anyone to think I am not thinking of all of you- I just am struggling right now- that's all!

I think though, the sub may be the route for you to take being that you have had a drug issue for so long. It may be ideal for you. I have always been "leary" of methadone- don't know why??? I would go the sub route before the methadone- that's just me though. This may be something you have to take for lifetime or atleast take it a couple of years and allow yourself to "break the habit" mentally of taking pills everyday- ya know? That's a big part of it- the mental games!

I am proud of you, Dallas! You are making such good progess and it makes my heart happy. Bear with me though for the next few days- I may be just quiet or not having the "right words" to say- don't know if I even did tonight but I think you have and will continue to get lots of great advice from others. Just keep moving forward and realize how many steps you have taken in the right direction so far! You are doing exactly what you need to be doing right now- exploring your options and getting advice and talking
with doctors- great!!! :)

Hope you sleep well tonight and I thank God you are doing so well!
Michelle
methadone w/d is not bad at all if it is done right slow,over a long period of time...im on 60 mg of methadone...i was on buprenex,same as suboxone/subutex for 4 years...it id just as hard to get off of.....all opiates carry w/d's any way you look at it you are going to pay for what you have done...make a game plan with your counselor...what works for some,might not be right for others...meth is good mainatance and so is sub...they are both opiates....chef
Hi Dallas Alice:

Well...........here goes.......I have been posting here and there on these boards for a couple months now, and have briefly summarized my own little addiction/recovery story. If you remember, I am the person who hit rock bottom by being arrested (forged prescription) and was looking at going to prison. At that time, I had been using for a long time, about 15 years, and using a lot, up to 50 or more pills a day. Yes, that much. It was mostly Lortabs and Percocet (my personal favorite) with all kinds of "party favors" in between. At the end of my addiction, I was washing the pills down with a nice cocktail, perhaps a gin and tonic or brandy and coke. As much as I HATED my life and myself for what I had turned it into, I could not stop. I tried over and over and over again. I would try to taper, I was never very good at this one, very difficult for me to have the discipline to set aside my pills to take only at a schedule, planned time (yeah, right) If I could that, I wouldn't be at this spot in the first place. My family did an intervention on me, I entered rehab and relapsed shortly after getting back home. Obviously, my heart wasn't ready to give it up, or to work a program. After I relapsed, my life became even more of a big lie, because of course I had to pretend I was still clean and that the rehab had worked. That went on for several years, until my husband started to notice some old behaviors and would "confront" me. I would always assure him..."Oh honey, don't worry. I may take something here and there, but it's nothing like it used to be." Big Fat Lie. Of course, we are master manipulators when we are using. Once again, my addiction had grown into an uncontrollable, all-consuming problem. I can see that this post is already getting lengthy, and I really don't want to bore you, so I'll try to get to my point (yes, I do have one)

After my arrest, I entered another rehab. In addition to battling my addiction, I was also battling depression and shame, and guilt, and humiliation, and feeling like the lowest of the low for what I had done. My self-esteem left much to be desired. After several days in the rehab facility and being detoxed, the physicians and staff were not real happy with how things were going. My vitals were not what they wanted to see, all kinds of weird things happening even with all of the usual detox meds. A doctor talked to me about methadone, I knew absolutely nothing about it. At this point, I felt so horrible, physically and mentally, death would have been my first option. I'll save the dramatics for another time. After talking to my husband, I agreed to give it a try. It has worked so well for me, it's difficult for me to listen to people trash it. It is so incredibly hurtful to hear another addict judge my choice of recovery method, especially when they don't know my whole story. I have never mentioned that I am on methadone on these boards, you are the first person I am telling (and now for all to see). Regardless of other's opinions, this is how I see it. Methadone absolutely without question saved my life. My husband will agree. I was a lifelong user, could not remember life without drugs. I had tried everything else to no avail. In my case, methadone was offered as a last resort. I also have a legal situation hanging over my head. I am on probation (for a long time) and am on weekly drug screenings. If I relapse, at all, take one pill....I am off to prison. I am a wife and a mom to 2 beautiful kids, and the thought of that looming in the distance is downright frightening.

I hear all of your questions, and I will try to answer them the best I can. (I hope I remember them now) As far as going to a "clinic" every day, that is only in the beginning of the treatment. I love it when I hear someone talk about "the inconvenience" of having to do that, yet most addicts would crawl on their knees across a state line to obtain a nice supply of their drug of choice..I know I would have, no questions asked. Anyway, I looked at it as a type of discipline, like having to go to the gym every day, like it or not. Where I go, there are no lines, no embarrassment, no "low-lifes hanging out in the parking lots." The staff is highly professional, the 2 doctors that run it are known for having a very high success rate. Let me assure you that I have seen every kind of person in this clinic, businessmen, a pharmacist, a first grade teacher, a lawyer, a new mom, you name it.) Addicts come in all shapes, sizes, and from all walks of life. I too, must see a counselor as part of the treatment, and although it took me a long time to open up to her (my own personal hang-up) that relationship has proven to be a huge help in my recovery. I think some people feel if you're on methadone, you don't have to "work" on your recovery...just not true. My clinic encourages attending meetings, group therapy, and one on one counseling. The treatment program also requires physical exams, random drug screening (must abstain from any and all illicit drugs) The program has all kinds of requirements that you must follow in order to stay in the program. Lets see...you mentioned something about feeling the methadone at first. In the very beginning, I felt the methadone "kick in" about 1 hour or so after taking it. That feeling wears off with time, just like anything you take, you get used to it. The amount of your dose is monitored by a physician, who is closely monitored by state and federal guidelines. The doctor will adjust your dose according to how you are feeling. Where I go, every few months we are tested for some level (can't remember the name of the test). It's a blood test, and it will show the level of methadone in our system, right before we dose, and again 3 hours after dosing. This will ensure that you are being properly dosed! If the level is too high, you are getting more than you need, and most likely the dose will be adjusted (usually determined by a conversation with you and your doctor). If the level is too low, again, the dose may be adjusted. My clinic is very strict about making sure you are getting the proper dose in order to stay clean, that is all the methadone should do.....it should not be giving you a buzz or getting you high, if it is......most likely, you are getting more than you need. Each clinic handles this issue it's own way.

Your question about taking Lortab with the methadone.....if you take Lortab and you feel it...you are probably not on a high enough dose of methadone. I have had 2 surgeries while on methadone, and because methadone should block your brain's receptors from feeling narcotics, you have to be administered 2-3 times the usual narcotics used in surgery and or a procedure. This is done by the physician who is in charge of your methadone treatment getting in touch with the physician in charge of your surgery. They come up with a dosage plan for the surgery and aftercare, so that you will have proper pain relief after your surgery. I have gone through this a couple times, and have used the pain meds just like I was supposed to, and then I was done, no relapse. The methadone should be dosed at a level that you do NOT feel a narcotic of you take any. Again, another reason for routine blood level tests to ensure your best chance at recovery. By the way, the clinic I go to has an extremely high success rate (about 95 percent). Not too bad.

I know I could go on and on, but my little one "needs me". Look, my feeling is..keep your appt with the clinic you called. Any information you gain cannot be a waste of time. The more you know, the easier your decision may turn out to be. I will be here to answer anything at all. I have been on methadone for a while now, and it has been truly successful for me. It has given me my life back, I feel normal again. I do not feel high every day, just normal. I have no cravings, and if I would, I have a staff at my disposal to help me deal with them. Try to remember to do what is best for YOU. Don't let other's opinions and sometimes ignorance limit your choices. As addicts, we should do nothing but support one another in each other's recovery. We are not keeping score as to who suffered more with withdrawals, who relapsed again, who isn't ready yet,or who is fortunate enough to be off the drugs. We are all in or have been in the same boat, by sharing thoughts and experiences, we gain insight into what can be our own future or destiny. I want to tell you how proud I am that you even made that phone call, really. That is a big step, whether you realize it or not. Just take things a day at a time, and remember to use this board as a resource and hopefully support. Please feel free to ask me anything at all, I offer whatever I can to help you, and will always be honest in doing so. Take Care. Fondly, Jen
Jen .... you stated that it makes you mad when others judge your choice of recovery. I am one of those people that you have judged. I think it is important for me to let you know that I do not judge any one's recovery program. I was an active addict from the time I was 16, until a few years ago. I am in my mid 40's. However, I don't believe in taking any drugs to get over other drugs. I was addicted to Heroin for numerous years. So, I am not saying Methadone is bad, or trying to influence peolple not to go that route. I just believe that withdrawals from all drugs is the answer. I do not judge anyone for thier methods. All I can share on this board is my personal experiences and I have gave my life to the helping of addicts get clean, I work in a recovery house for women, so from my experience Methadone is a maintenence program, it does not help you get over the physical, mental or emotional component of addiction it just prolongs the enevitable. I do not judge people and I am not trying to come across as atagonistic, however as someone that has dedicated her life to helping other addicts I can not in good concious tell people that Methadone is good. I am glad that it is working for you. Just as you will share your story, about the benefits of Methadone I will share my story about my personal experiences of Methadone without judgement.
TO JEAN AND BC, BOTH, RE. YOUR "AGREEING TO DISAGREE"! :-)

(and to Dallas Alice, of course)

I like the way you both represent opposite ends of the spectrum for choosing a recovery route. Kinda like watching one of the those "dueling divas" political talk shows, where both sides come out swinging! LOL! ( A sort of "Meet the Press"...or rather, "Meet the Drugs.") As long as you guys are still friends, afterwards! :-)

Your posts are just PERFECT for Dallas Alice to mull over! And, although I'm not yet quite ready to make such a decision, myself...you've both given D.A. such clear reasons for each alternate approach. (Ultimately...we all have to do what feels "right" for us. But hearing each side first-hand is so helpful )

Back in the "if it feels good, do it" Woodstock environment of the late 60's and 70's (my era...creak, groan! LOL), I had a friend, whose two pals were put on Methadone. At that time, I have to say, you DID see what I'd call "seedy-looking, unsavory" types hanging around the places that dispensed the drug.

But, NOW, in 2004, I wouldn't recognize a Methodone clinic if I LIVED in one! LOL!
They have become so discreet they are invisible...in the same unfortunate way that OPIATE addiction has now become such a silent plague...SO invisible and invasive, that the wholesome, young mother standing in front of you, in the pharmacy check-out line, could easily be waiting for her Lortab.. or Vicodin..or Percocet refill. (Hey! THAT'S why she looks so happy...merrily chatting away with the customer behind her! LOLOL! And, I should KNOW...having stood right behind her...on that very same line...feeling the "merriment" of anticipation!!) Sigh!

At any rate, my point (it IS here, somewhere!), is that there is now a newer and larger...but less visible... clientele for drugs like Methadone, and the newer--less understood--Suboxone and Subutex. And, thanks to posts like yours, Jen, and Banker's..and many more...I've had the chance to hear stories on all three medications. There really are choices now!

Now...BC....you are on the opposite fence from Jen. And, reading in detail your educated and experienced approach to the problem, I can understand why you advocate not using ANY of these choices. But--here's my question: After learning of Jen's almost miraculous turnaround with Methadone--how completely her life has become such a happier one....I'm now wondering if there are any circumstances under which you might suggest to a long-time drug user that they try Methodone or Sub. What if they have been unable to stay off drugs, constantly relapsing (even after detox, meetings, etc)...or if they HAVE come off drugs--but cannot (even with their previously successful antidepressants) break through that incapacitating, long-term depression, often experienced in the months a person detoxes. (It's been shown that people who have successfully battled clinical depression with antidepressants during their lives, may have a much tougher time getting "chemically okay" again, after stopping all the addictive drugs. For some reason the brain's receptors can be blocked longer. Or more permanently. Drat! Can't remember the source of this...but I've read it in several books.)

How do you feel, BC...is it possible in cases like that--when depression is no longer relieved--that Methadone or Sub can be viewed and used as a "life-time" maintenance drug? I know that the medical profession is still "out" on this question, because not enough time has passed to do long-term testing of these drugs. But, do you believe that no matter what the particular case, we must "inevitably" stop taking these opiate substitutes?

I'm really curious as to both your opinions, as my own clinical depression--even though very successfully kept at bay, after years of trial and error with antidepressant combinations)--comes raging back whenever I've tried backing off the 4-6 Vics a day (or, in some months, two 40 mg oxys a day, instead) that I take. So--at some point--like Dallas Alice--I might consider one of these "opiate substitutes" as a long-time maintenance choice--rather than live with a depressed brain chemistry that has been disturbed to the point that it will never again return to "normal", even with my former antidepressants.

Okay! I guess that I'm not totally convinced that being 100 percent "clean", wins out over living life with a bleak, anxious depression that never quits!! (In fact--I KNOW it doesn't!! :-)

Incidentally. for me "being clean" would mean: not needing to plan my life around where, when, how...and how many (!) pills I need just to stay free from withdrawal symptoms. Not thinking, "whoa....I can't go down to W. Virginia to visit my friend the end of the month....I have no idea if my pills will be available so early." Or..."If I take this pill right before the concert, I can relax and enjoy the music so much more...or should I save it for afterwards, when I'm expected to invite my friends back for coffee....???" Last example...and my own personal 'favorite'...'cause it happened on last year's winter ski trip out West, ruining what is my most favorite activity in the world: skiing! Mid-trip, I suddenly realized just HOW low my "supply" actually was...and started planning my days with these thoughts like..."I've only got a scrap of the oxy left for the day....but if I don't take it now, I won't even be able to get my ski boots on, I'm so lethagic and depressed. Oh, forget it, I can't even make it to the CHAIRLIFT. I'm gong back to bed." Fun vacation, eh?!?! :-) What a ludicrous way to live my life!!! Aaarrrggghhhhh!!!

Well, this post has gone on much longer than planned...this is what happens when I talk to myself!! LOLOL! Any, input, tho'??

Thanks for wading through all this. And, now I need to get busy and to take my mind off worrying so much about my little Lhasa's leg operation tomorrow morning--hmm..."Little Lhasa Legs"---I like the alliteration!!) LOL!! :-) Anyway...I'm going to sit down at my table right now, with all my colored pens...and deep busy by making a card for my friend's birthday, tomorrow. (I do enjoy this sort of fun hobby...but then I get so disgusted at myself that almost my first thought was: "ahhh... I have just enough pills to take half of one to make this card-making "extra" fun!!) Can you believe it--how utterly pathetic, eh?!?! And all it's really doing is warding off withdrawal. :-(

Really sorry for the rambling. I don't blame any of you if you don't understand a word of what I've said..or what the heck my question is!!! LOL!! :-)

have a good day, all, :-) lynn
Quote from Twinlynn:

Your posts are just PERFECT for Dallas Alice to mull over! And, although I'm not yet quite ready to make such a decision, myself...you've both given D.A. such clear reasons for each alternate approach. (Ultimately...we all have to do what feels "right" for us. But hearing each side first-hand is so helpful )
So--at some point--like Dallas Alice--I might consider one of these "opiate substitutes" as a long-time maintenance choice--rather than live with a depressed brain chemistry that has been disturbed to the point that it will never again return to "normal", even with my former antidepressants.

Incidentally. for me "being clean" would mean: not needing to plan my life around where, when, how...and how many (!) pills I need just to stay free from withdrawal symptoms. Not thinking, "whoa....I can't go down to W. Virginia to visit my friend the end of the month....I have no idea if my pills will be available so early." Or..."If I take this pill right before the concert, I can relax and enjoy the music so much more...or should I save it for afterwards, when I'm expected to invite my friends back for coffee....???" Last example...and my own personal 'favorite'...'cause it happened on last year's winter ski trip out West, ruining what is my most favorite activity in the world: skiing! Mid-trip, I suddenly realized just HOW low my "supply" actually was...and started planning my days with these thoughts like..."I've only got a scrap of the oxy left for the day....but if I don't take it now, I won't even be able to get my ski boots on, I'm so lethagic and depressed. Oh, forget it, I can't even make it to the CHAIRLIFT. I'm gong back to bed." Fun vacation, eh?!?! :-) What a ludicrous way to live my life!!! Aaarrrggghhhhh!!!

Anyway...I'm going to sit down at my table right now, with all my colored pens...and deep busy by making a card for my friend's birthday, tomorrow. (I do enjoy this sort of fun hobby...but then I get so disgusted at myself that almost my first thought was: "ahhh... I have just enough pills to take half of one to make this card-making "extra" fun!!) Can you believe it--how utterly pathetic, eh?!?! And all it's really doing is warding off withdrawal. :-(

lynn


Twinlynn,

I, too, thank everyone who replied and particularly these three gracious women (BCBurnaby, Jen, and Michelle) for giving and sharing so much information and so many different perspectives for when I go in to that clinic tomorrow--or being the addict that I am, Tuesday maybe. After all, just got that script on Saturday, and that brings me to this next point, I understand exactly your thought process on the vacation, the skiing, and the card making. I do EXACTLY the same thing--can't go out tonight, but next Friday (because I'll have my pills by then), I gave up a weekend getaway w/my last boyfriend because I didn't have enough to not only enjoy it but to keep the w/ds at bay. What you wrote is exactly my "schedule." The activities may be different, but the timing of the pills and amounts vs. the specific activity is what I do exactly, right down to every detail and thought you mentioned.

My last b/f dumped me because he couldn't understand why I'd choose staying home alone instead of going out if I didn't have any pills...well, he didn't understand w/ds. He also, and I'm sorry if this is "TMI," but why I chose the "Big O" from the pill rather than from being intimate--boardies, do you know what I mean? More practically stated, I was numb all over and no amount of "activity" was going to send me to the moon! I can understand his frustration at me, but if he'd been me, boy would he know "frustration!"

I have read and reread this thread and all this great wealth of information...and I had no idea there was so much to think about and digest. For example, Michelle says there's Subutex and Suboxone and there's a difference, so now I have that to throw in the mix; however, this clinic only offers the Subutex (I think?). And the point you made about the new and improved methadone clinics, well that's the first thing the director told me. He said back in the "old days" they were a somewhat degrading place to be with the lines of heroin addicts waiting for the handout, but this is actually a restored Victorian house downtown complete with antiques and new furniture! He made it sound very nice and "homey" actually.

Cost is a factor, too. Right now I spend $120/mth. on the benzos, and somewhere between $300-$400/mth on the vikes. At this place I can get a reduced rate on the Meth at $190/mth. vs. $400-$500 for the Sub (for some reason there's no cost reduction for the Sub), but the 'Meth-way' takes longer to do [he said 3-6 mths.] than the 'Sub-way' [1-3 mths.] so who knows how the long-term cost would equalize. Of course, since we haven't met yet, those timeframes are only approximations. I don't have health insurance, so that's a non-issue. They do take credit cards, and I may have some available credit left somewhere so I've at least chosen to spend it at this clinic than the pharmacy, I think. The benzo issue might be a part of the decision making, as I do think I am on that for the long haul, but maybe not forever.

After reading all this and hearing so many different ideas and experiences, I think the best way to approach it is with my list of questions in hand, sit down for the 2-hr. intro he said we'd do first, and tell him absolutely everything I've told all of you and then just ask him what he thinks the best route for me to go is. Then I'll take that info home and chew on it for awhile and share with you all and hopefully get some more much-appreciated and so very valued opinions and thoughts from you guys, and ultimately I have vowed to myself and now to all of you to make a decision to quit one way or another via either Meth or Sub. I absolutely know I can't taper or c/t...been there, can't do that.

To all of you who have spent the time to share with me and write me the long posts I need as well as the shorter posts of support and encouragement, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving me what I need to be armed and ready to go in and talk to this man...for the first time, a real live person will hear this and that alone will be awfully strange.

Love,
Dallas Alice
I did suffer from clinical depression caused by years of drug abuse for which, I was perscribed Effexor XR. I don't want people to miss understand, I do not have to agree with your form of recovery to support you. I simply wrote that post as I felt that Jen thought that others judged her because they disagreed with her methods. It is not for me to judge. I do lots of service work for NA and sponsor a number of addicts in recovery, two of them use Methadone. I support them and care for them like any other addict. I just think that switching one drug for another is robbing Peter to pay Paul. I think that if you feel Methadone will help you through your recovery process, it is for you to decide however, I don't want anyone to think I judge them for thier decision because I disagree with Methadone. I judge no one. I in the years that I was an addict, and the years I have worked with addicts have never seen, ever, anyone come off Methadone successfully without returning to the drug of thier choice, or another drug. I never meant to disagree with any one and I did not want to start a debate. I wanted to get the point across that everyone has different experiences, it does not mean I judge anyone that has a different view from our own.