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Help! Trying to kick hydrocodone addiction =-(
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Help! Trying to kick hydrocodone addiction =-(

My name is Kina and I am what some would call a "functional addict". In reality, I am as dysfunctional as they come. I am a real person with real problems, who obviously does not know how to deal with them. My purpose in coming here is not for self-gratification, but rather to put my problems out in the open, as this has been a secret for far too long. They say the first step to recovery is admitting that you have a problem. I see many blogs by ER and ED doctors and nurses about the drug seekers they see on a daily basis. Part of me wants to be angry at them, for being so crass and uncaring, but I can also see their perspective, too. They are real people as well, with real problems, but they aren't popping hydros just to get through the day now are they? NO! I envy them. I envy the people who go through life on a daily basis with a smile on their face without needing a chemical to alter them enough to make them think they are happy.

How did I get to this point? It hit me like a train. I knew better, yet I continue to go down this destructive path I have created for myself. It all started with a major surgery, resulting in a death sentence for my child. Many complications arose during my pregnancy, pre-term labor, polyhydramnios, 3rd trimester bleeding. I had an obvious issue, placental seperation, but upon my water breaking at home at 31.5 weeks, I was admitted to the Labor & Delivery Unit, to sit there for over a day until my child went into distress. I had been begging for an epidural for 13 hours because the pain was unbearable. My voice was never heard. I did not even have an IV in my arm. It had blown 30 minutes prior. So the anesthesiologist had to come in and find a vein then I was rushed to the O.R., put completely under, only to wake up to hear that my premature infant was on a ventilator after 20 minutes of CPR, and likely would not make it through the night. I clung on to hope. Hours turned into days, days to weeks, weeks to months. My severely brain damaged child fought for his life for months, surgeries, and finally was able to come home despite me being told he never would. My doctor made a mistake, a tragic mistake. I had nurses at the large childrens hospital he was transferred to tell me that it was flagrant malpractice and that I needed to consult an attorney. Did I call one? Yes. Did I follow through? No. As much as this could have been prevented, I am sure that this Dr. knows that his poor choices led to my son's demise. I know that he lives with it every day. Or at least I hope that there won't be a next time. Sure, I could get sue happy. I could probably get a lot of money. But no amount of money in the world will erase the day that I woke up to find my son blue and unresponsive. The baby boy, my firstborn son, that i was supposed to protect, i had FAILED! All the medical training under my belt could not work my fingers to dial 911 that day as I ran out the door screaming for help, my 3.5 month old son, at only 6 lbs, laying him down on the concrete stairs as I desperately tried to do CPR and save his life. It will never take away the memory of seeing the blood already pooling to one side of my baby's face, knowing that it was too late, but hanging on to every ounce of hope that the EMTs would arrive and save him. I remember the police officer having to literally pick me up off of the ground so that the medics could get to him. I don't want their money, I just want to forget. I want to forgive him, and I want to forgive myself. But for now I just pop pills.

I was placed on potent painkillers by this doctor upon discharge from the hospital. For legitimate reasons, I took them. And I took them as prescribed. Only he made a huge mistake. He gave me 60 of them with 4 refills. 60 alone without refills would have been plenty, but perhaps he was "compensating" me with pills for the emotional pain he had caused me, and I, took advantage. I found myself taking them even after the pain had subsided. I took them to wake up in the mornings, I took them to stay awake at night. I took them just because, and I still do...

Over the course of 13 months, I have gone through every avenue to obtain them, even having some dental work done that I had put off, I didn't care about the fact that I was petrified of the dentist, I only cared that I had them. I dabbled in something called Dilaudid as well, that a family member had for back problems, and when that ran out, back to the hydrocodone I went. I am now at the point where I take 5-6 at a time, sometimes 6 or 7 times a day. And now, rather than go to the ER drug-seeking like some pill poppers do, I got (un)lucky and found someone who sold them on the street. Sad thing is, I am so ashamed of my habit, that even the person I buy them from thinks I am buying them for a friend. That "friend" is the real me that no one knows about. I do not spend hours on end in the ER making up pain to get them. I do not waste their time or mine to get 15 or so 5mg pills that I know I will fly through in a day. Never have. I make decent money, yet I spend close to 2000 a month on these things. Money that could go to something useful. I am ashamed of myself. I need help. I just don't know how to stop. So I have decided to tell someone, and maybe, just maybe I will get the help I so desperately need. I am scared, when I try to quit I have horrible symptoms, sweats, muscles drawing up, pure hell. What do I do? How will I be treated if I go to the dr and say that I have a problem?

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781991_tn?1237968379
Welcome.  Believe it or not, there are many many of us like you.  You are not alone.  Believe it or not, even though you just posted your story on an internet forum, you just made a huge step.  Clearly you knew what you were doing was wrong, but that's just part of it.  Saying you want it to stop is an even bigger part.  

First off, let me say that your story is so touching.  I'm so sorry for your loss.  I don't wish that upon anyone.  There isn't a single person here who doesn't blame you for your actions because...let's face it...all of us at one point handled our problems this way and your problem for lack of a better word was a "doozy".  You'll never be able to gain closure from your baby living this way.  Being sober and dealing with it for real is the only and best way.  So your goal now, however you decide to reach it, is to get to that point.  

Be ready, because as touching as your story is, you will recieve plenty of advice.  So, my advice right away is to take every single bit of it in.  Write it all down.  You know what withdrawl (withdrawal) symptoms feel like.  Does this mean you've tried to quit before?  Or did you just run out for a little bit and found more?  If this will be your first real try at being clean, naturally it isn't going to be easy, so take it slow.  The best way to get sober is quitting cold turkey.  It's the hardest, but the best, because it immediately starts the path to cleanliness.  You've had a pretty strong habit, and the heavier the habit, the harder quitting is.  First and foremost, telling your doctor is the absolute best thing you could do.  Most doctors won't treat you like scum and will be more than willing to help.  Be honest with them.  They will suggest that you taper down with the drug they prescribed you.  Do you think you are able to do this?  If you don't have the self discipline to take X amount of pills a day without taking your normal amount, then do you have someone who can hold the medication for you each day and only give you so much?  Although cold turkey is the best way to go, as much as you were taking, it could be dangerous for your body to do so, this is another reason why telling your doctor is a good idea, because you need someone to be totally concerned with your health through this time.  If you notice your doctor is upset or doesn't seem to want to help or says you should keep taking the medication for a long time, then it's time to find a new doctor.  Chances are your doc will help just fine, but just in case, be prepared to find someone who will care and be dedicated to helping you recover.

So we've covered quitting cold turkey and tapering.  Tapering is a good 2nd option after cold turkey, because if you do a good solid/slow taper, stick with it, it won't get rid of the withdrawl (withdrawal) symptoms, but it will greatly reduce how horrible you will feel.  If doing cold turkey, on this site there are health pages with things like the Thomas Recipe that will help you take the vitamins you will need during those rough withdrawls.  You will get so many tips from members.  Hot baths, vitamins, excersise, and doing anything to keep your mind off of all of this.  You will notice a big change in how you feel within a few days.  And from there it's a day to day battle where you will feel at least a little better each day.  Then the physical withdrawls go away and you have to be prepared to deal with the mental part which will include cravings and just the fact that your mind is used to taking these meds.  That's where aftercare comes in.  Aftercare includes anything from this web site, to those close to you, to group meetings like na/aa, to even having a professional sponsor.  In many cases, aftercare is just as important as not taking any drugs.  It can mean the difference to staying clean or relapsing.

There are other options out there for you, but I think what I've covered is the best advice.  Make sure you explore all options.  If one thing doesn't work, don't be discouraged, you're trying.  Try something else.  Eventually you'll find your "sober niche" that will work for you and you'll be able to stick with it.  One thing about us addicts that is different than those who have been clean all there life is this....once you become clean again, you learn to appreciate life more.  It's like people who have had a near death experience or recieved news that they have a terminal illness.  They go out with a new appreciation in life.  That's the reward in all of this.  

You posted pretty early in the morning, I'm about the only member up at this time due to my job, so be patient in your waiting of answers.  If you don't recieve many the first half of the day, post a question again.  Feel free to keep asking and keep us posted as much as possible until you find the answers you are looking for.  Good luck and may God Bless you!

Barry
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805369_tn?1238190191
For your kind words. I knew the risks of cold turkey, so I thought, but thank you for confirming. That is what scares me the most. The fact that I am at such a high dose, could that mean severe consequences for my health if I stop abruptly. The withdrawl (withdrawal) symptoms I felt were actually when I was running out and I limited myself to about 12 pills per day. I am not given these under a drs care but rather finding them myself. I have hit a dangerous point. I know that the amount that I am taking of tylenol is like asking for death. But then again I am scared that I will hurt myself if I stop abruptly.  I hate waking up and feeling like **** for 45 mins or so until the meds kick in. I wake up in sweats, wishing that I could sleep just a little longer so I didnt have to take them. I dont know how in a years time I increased to such a high dosage. I took them to stay awake because I was afraid to sleep. My son died while we were sleeping. Its  scary. I appreciate all of your advice, it meant a lot and it is so nice to be understood. God Bless You!

Kina
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781991_tn?1237968379
I completely feel for you.  It seems like you have a good job, so I'm assuming you have at least decent health insurance?  Chances are if you quit cold turkey you will be fine in the long run health wise.  It just may not be good for your health.  Although you still don't get the meds from the doctor, they will still help.  Just got to be honest and up front to them.  I'm not sure they will help you taper since they will probably not issue you a prescription for your drug of choice just so you could do so.  Do you have any of these meds left currently?  If so, then maybe you should taper with what you have left first then quit all together.  If not....if I were you, I'd just go the cold turkey route.  I was up to taking 20 or more 10/325mg hydrocodone a day, so I've taken the 6 or 7 pills at once before like yourself and I've ran out before as well and gone through the withdrawls several times and although you feel like you wanna die, I was fine everytime.  In my case, it was that first day I was without that was horrible, and on day 2 I would feel a TON better.  

The issues you are having as far as being afraid to fall asleep because of your baby is really unfortunate and really serious.  It's possible that quitting this medication could be pretty rough on you mentally, so that's another good reason to see your doctor.  You really may need other medication to deal with that.  Because quitting pain killers cold turkey is a large issue in itself.  To have to deal with the loss of your baby during the recovery just makes it that much more difficult.  I'm sure you're tough enough to handle each one of these issues individually, but it takes a rare person to deal with both of those things at once.  With that said...talking with a doctor is probably a requirement in this case.  Plus, once you've gotten past the bad physical withdrawls, aftercare will be very important for you.  

So, I'd talk with your doctor and just prepare yourself for quitting cold turkey because I don't see a doctor prescribing you pain meds to taper with.  But, if they see fit, they may help you with some anti-depressants.  Just take care of yourself and deal with one thing at a time.  Deal with the addiction first and once you have a good handle on that, then you'll be ready to deal with the problems going on in your life that stemmed from unfortunate events with your baby.  At least you have a wonderful little angel looking over you.  I'm sure you're in great hands.  Don't forget we are also all here for you.  Again, just be patient and I'm positive you will get some great advice.  Take care and God Bless.

Barry
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I think BQ77 gave you wonderful advice hon.I just want to say from the bottom of my heart,I am so truly sorry about your loss.I cannot even begin to imagine your pain.I also,like BQ77,would suggest that you get help from your doctor with this.The additional mental stress caused by w/ds,added to what you are already going through,is going to be rough.Keep posting here.You will find so much help and support.Take care and good luck.Keep us posted.Lifting you up in prayer......Kim
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600086_tn?1238422589
I just want to say welcome.  You have made a very important first step.  I am very proud of you for that.  I just want to add one thing.  Personally, I have had 3 preemie babies.  I too have done CPR on my son.  I was lucky.  He was able to get help, it just as easily could have gone the other way.  I know I felt, and still do, tremendous guilt.  I had guilt that my body gave up on my babies, that it wouldn't hold them so they could be born full term.  Although my head knows that I did everything I could as a mother, there is so much misplaced guilt that comes with that, and I am sure, you are feeling that as well, even though anyone hearing your story understands that you are a good mom who did everything she could and who loved her baby so fiercly and still does.  I have begun to see a counselor to work through these guilty feelings.  My suggestion to you is, instead of spending 2,000 a month on drugs, go see a counselor and work out your underlying issue.
Again, remember you are strong and there are so many people here who will love and support you.  You are worth saving.  Stay with us and in no time at all you will be a success story.  Good luck, send me a message anytime.  We all want you to get through this.  You CAN and WILL do this.....
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760862_tn?1243100904
My heart goes out to you over the loss of your precious innocent little baby.  I will keep you and your baby in my thoughts and prayers.  I can feel the anger, frustration and hurt in your words.  I sympathize with the painful circle of hurt you are going through now.  As stated above, w/d's are individualized and we each exprience some similar problem's but, it's different for each person.  Also stated above, dont' give up, try, try and try again until you find the right treatment for you, as with w/d's being individualized, so are treatment's, what works for one might or might not work for you.  Being able to talk about what is going on with you is so important, liberating and takes a huge burden off of you.  When I talk through my problems and get them out in the open I feel like a huge weight has litterally been lifted off of my shoulders.  My suggestion is to make an appt to see a therapist and tell him just what you told us here.  Be truthfull and lay it all out there on the table, your therapist will not only be there to listen for you but, he can also be a liason for you.  He would be able to set you in the right direction by helping you find a medical doctor and if you want he would even help you talk to the medical doctor and help you explain what has happened to you  and what got you to this point and be another support person for you.  By the therapist, doctor and you working together, you may not have to quit cold turkey and go through w/d's they may be able to work together and find a medicine that isn't a narcotic that will help you taper off of the med's safely, also if you are needing an anti-depressant than he can help you with that to.  I am a talker where my mom and family calls me a magpie, I am like a balloon filled to the brim with hot air with a hole poked in it and I just keep going and going and going.  anywho, enough about my talking problem.  but, i find that it really helps me to talk about things so, this is just another suggestion for something to maybe try until you find your "niche" that helps you in your recovery process.  I wish you all the best and will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.  like i said i am a good talker and a good listener also, so if you ever want to shoot the S*^T (w/d's make me nervous and once again I need to talk constantly or pull my hair out, so i choose to talk) if that happens to you, i know how to listen....................................until next time............montanagurl
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Avatar_f_tn
You have gotten some great advice from really caring and understanding people. I also want to say how sorry I am for your loss. In my opinion, the worst tragedy that can happen in life is the death of a child. I can't think of anything worse. As a mother your story actually made me cry. I can't imagine going through that. Until I became a mother myself, stories like this would touch me, but now I have a whole new understanding on what it would mean to loose a child. I just could not imagine it. I know you say you feel guilty, but you did not do anything wrong. You did the best you could to protect your child. I am sure you were at that hospital as much as you could be when he was in the NICU just as any good mother would of been. You brought him home and cared for him like the loving mother you are. It is unfortunate what happened and I am so sorry for you. If you have good health ins. it would be very beneficial for you to see a Psychiatrist or a Pschologist. A Psychiatrist can give you meds to help you through this,like antidepressants or anything else they think you would need. They can also help you get off the narcotics hopefully painlessly as possible. They would also refer you to a therapist to talk to because you really need to work through your feelings. A loss like that takes a while to recover from and it is always good to have a therapist help you out. It is better to talk about things than to hold the feelings inside. You have made the first step by letting it all out on here, but you really need a professional to help you out with all of these issues. I really feel for you. Please take the advice everyone has offered and get some help. There are so many good doctors out there that can help you. What happens if you get caught and get thrown in jail, or better yet you know you are doing damage to your liver with that amount of acetaminophen. You are not supposed to have more than 4 grams a day or 4000 milligrams. You are way overdoing it. If you notice your eyes or skin turning a yellowish color then you are really in trouble. It would not hurt to get a liver function test done as well to make sure there is no damage that can't be undone. That is why doctors always say you can't take more than 8 vic's a day if they are the 5/500.
One more thing I wanted to mention, many jobs have hotlines you can call for mental health. If your job offers that it may be somewhere you would want to start. They are not allowed to tell your employer anything about you, it is kept totally confidential.
I wish you the best,            Audrea
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805369_tn?1238190191
Never in my life have I felt so much support!  I did not know with all of the posts that are made on a daily basis, if mine would be responded to. WOW! Just getting this off my chest makes me feel like I have taken a huge step and weight has been lifted off already. I was asked by a few people if I had any remaining and I do, probably about 90-100. I used to count them, but now I hate them so much that counting them makes me feel ashamed and obsessive, I have lost the will to even pull them out of the bottle and see how many are left. I will admit I was alarmed by someone saying that a dosage this high, withdrawl (withdrawal) could be dangerous. Does this mean I possible need to taper down for a few days? I seem to be ok if I take 3 or 4, without sweats and muscles feeling like rubber bands. Its just taking 6 or 7 to feel the more euphoric effects and I honestly don't even want to feel those effects anymore. I know that I have done this to myself and that it wont be some cake walk to get off, and as much as I wanted to just flush them all, I know that I cannot even move if I dont take the 3 or 4 to feel "functional" to get through until I can see the dr next week. I have been tempted several times to walk into the ER, but unfortunately, I Google everything and have read the unsympathetic pompous ER nurses who have blogs online and how they completely de-humanize their patients, ESPECIALLY the addicts. my brother passed away 29 days after my son did, from a heart attack, due to damage from drug abuse. I dont want to die. He had gotten clean but the damage was done. He had his first heart attack at 39 and passed away at 47. I am almost 28, and I cant do what he did, I know better. He started with pills and went on to shooting pills, then coke, and eventually all he could do was smoke crack because if he went IV again he referred to it as a "bloodbath" He went to work as a computer engineer daily high on crack. I feel truly blessed to have found all of you here. I know that I am going to need so much support in this journey and had to admit that I cannot do it alone. I am so grateful for all of the prayers and positive energy, you people have shown me more compassion, all the while recovering from addiction yourselves. That takes a true act of selflessness on your part and I am lucky to be a part of this. May God Bless You ALL and please continue to keep me in your prayers, as I will keep each and every one of you in mine!

Kina
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271872_tn?1238593991
Oh girl, I'm so sorry for your horrible loss!
I can never tell you I know how you feel.
I can tell you I am an addict who knows THAT pain.
I just came off Fentanyl. 17 days now. Feel pretty good, too.
I would hate to give you advice about a taper because I always failed miserablly.
You & I and most of on this forum have used drugs to not feel the bad things that have happened to us!
Didn't start out that way, now did it.
I was addicted from my first pill. I took that pill for real pain.
Then...something WONDERFUL happened.
I forgot I had been abandoned by both of my parents. Had been sexually abused & thrown away like garbage.
Little did I know I was going to visit Satan for years to come.
Both my brothers are addicts, too.
Hey MOM! GOOD JOB!
My little brother went to prison over Meth.
My other brother tweaks all the time & is 40 something & is alone with no wife or kids.
Never had a real relationship.
I'm always jealous of those "overcommers".
You know the ones who are strong as steel inside. They have a Mom Or Dad like that, the say "screw you!" "i'm not gonna let you ruin my life!"
I have never been like that. I have always taken things to heart.
You have lost a child & you are still here! You MUST be strong, girl.
That's all I gotta say.
You hang in there!
Bigalspal
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