Addiction

Information, Symptoms, Treatments and Resources

Blank
Members Recovery Experiences

Members Recovery Experiences

We talk a lot about detox and the beginning of recovery  but what happens after you have gotten clean and the physical symptom's are gone .Then the hard part starts staying in recovery .Here are some of our members experience's that have had a least 6 months clean .How did they cope when thing got rough ?How important is long term recovery care ?I hope this helps some of our members down the road to recovery!!!

KIMS EXPERIENCES

.I abused vicodin for many many years.I started taking them for pain because of back problems and not long after started abusing them,running out of my script,buying them from dealers,doctor shopping.I actually had one of my dealers tell me about the methadone clinic,so like I lived most of my life back then,I jumped right into the clinic,eyes closed tight.I had no idea what methadone was,at the time didn't care,just knew I wanted off the roller coaster ride of hunting down pills everyday to keep from being dope sick.I was on it for about a year the first time I decided to start tapering.Didn't make it the first time,went back up.Tried again and failed again.went back up.The third time I got down to 25 mgs and to be honest,something in my head just clicked.I knew it was now or never for me.I wish I could explain what it was that 'clicked',but I'm just not sure.I wanted to quit for a long time.I HATED going to that clinic,but I was just always so scared of the w/ds.I think it was around my 4th day off that I got on the computer,which I had NEVER been on before,and found this site and that night I actually dragged my behind to a meeting that was across the street from where I live.I couldn't even sit through the whole meeting,so I came back home and got back on the forum.I had tried and failed so very many times in the past to stop the pills,never made it past day 4.When I stopped the methadone I was physically sick for 6 weeks and I didn't quit.The difference for me was absolutely,without a doubt,AFTER CARE.I needed to learn how not to just physically put the drugs down,but how mentally not to pick them back up again.I needed coping skills and I needed support from others who had been in my shoes.I had never reached out before,this time I did.I am now just a little over a year clean from EVERYTHING and life is good again.I needed to put as much effort into getting clean as I did to getting high.Put as much effort into working my recovery as I did to chasing those pills.After care is what helps me stay clean.

AVIS"S

I had pain issues that would be where my problem begin .I was introduced to tramadol about 10 years ago .I loved it I had a doctor that would prescribe it to me a very regular basis however I new after the first 20 pills .I had a problem but of course I justified it by saying I had pain  .Of course I was taking them when I didn't have pain to.When I moved that was the end of the tram (for now ) .I went maybe 5 years without abusing anything .Then in 2002 things got bad again  I had some more pain issues and this time I had a doctor who would give me just about anything I wanted .I did this for a few years then when I moved again I managed to go a few months clean when I found a new doctor in my new town to feed my addiction this went on until I finally realized what a big problem it had all become .I didn't want to do anything but take my pills.When my son was diagnosed with cancer in 2006 i new it was time to clean up my own life .I quit smoking first pills next .The first time I manged to get clean for 6 months but here is the thing I was so sure I could do it on my own with the members from the forum .I was never going to use again .Yeah it does not work that way .I ended up relapsing I thought I would be able to control the pain meds we all know how that goes.I smartened up quick after three weeks I got right back on the wagon .This time I have done it differently.I see a therapist we have gotten down to the root of why i use .I have learned my triggers so sometimes I can keep myself out of a situation that would put my sobriety at risk .I talk to people instead of letting things get bottled up .I learn as much as I can about addiction and recovery .It is day DALIY thing .I realize that at all times I am one pill away from using and that I will do whatever I can to make sure I always stay one pill away .I have also learned that there can be emergencies when you might need short term pain relief this happened to me when I had surgery last year .The pills were given to hubby .They were given to me as I needed until Motrin would worked and then remainder of the bottle was flushed.
Its now been 2 and a half years since I smoked and a year and a half since I have used .I take it one day at a time everyday .
EAGLE'S
First, after my multiple relapses I still wanted to clean up. It had been obvious that I needed a long (lifetime) break.  Tapering wasnt my thing no matter how many times or what stategies I tried. I did much net research. Even some literature. I also OD'd because my tolerance had dropped so much from my efforts and I just jumped back in at previous dose and almost bought the farm. Woke in one of those ER moments. Awfully close to being toasted. My sons were at bedside and proved to a shock that I needed. I have two great guys and a decent wife. At least she stayed with me! Really a lot to live for. So I talked to my Pastor .... he is good......and I found this site.  I consult with my Pastor and spend a lot of time here helping some and insulting others. The MedHelp involvement is wonderful and reminds me how far I have come, but also how close going back could be. Keeps you on your toes.  I might mention that the others on this forum that have been around lend unconditional support and very often a lot of laughs..........and I am proud to call them friends.  Their personal advice through PM's and also posts has been invaluable.  And has cintributed to me staying clean this time. And for the longest time since 1969.......
CATHY'S
since the age of 21 i was pretty much addicted to something.  almost 6 years ago i quit a coke and weed habit c/t.  my husband was also addicted and quit...we had the support of our pastor and a group of ppl at our church that we could call...we had group meetings at our house 3 times per week and counselled with our pastor regularly...about 2 years ago i found hydros for my tmj pain.  then when i started having to go to the street to get my pills i started to get oxycontin, then i started snorting them...i was beyound addicted.  this went on a year and a half...i quit a 240mg habit of oc c/t.  it was rough for the first week or so, but once agian i turned to my church and my pastor..  i also found this website, and stayed on here 24/7 in the early days...i also attended na for a period of time.   i strongle recommend aftercare to all in recovery.  many times i think that aftercare is the difference in success and failure in longtern recivery...
SARA's
started using at 13 yrs old.......Started drinking, along came pot and then pills.  Went thru 3 marriages and still didnt figure it out.  I started hitting the pills real heavy after my dad passed away.  I have a bad hip and used that to the max.  I lied to the doctor for years to get my pills and i didnt care who or what got in my way...I was in love with them.  My health started to fail, my blood pressure was going up, i was swelling up, had kidney issues and my life had fallen apart right before my eyes.  I started thinking about my 2 girls and the love of my life, my grandson....I was going to die and it was just a matter of time before i took that lethal dose.  I thought about my girls and knew they would want an autopsy and my dirty little secret would come out and they would be left to deal with that.  My grandson would have to tell people my grandma OD'd.......I couldnt do that to them.  I had tried to quit so many times but this time was different......I just knew that i had to stop.  I made a plan and the day came and i just jumped.  I found this forum and the support i found was out of this world.  I also knew i had to take a long hard look at ME.....i had to figure out why i chose to numb myself up for so many years.  I started out with baby steps and the longer i stay clean the bigger the steps i take.  It isnt always fun to take a long hard look at yourself but it is vital.  You have to face your fears.......I meet with some recovering addicts once a week.  We get together and just talk......Aftercare is very important.  I have lost alot in my life but at the same time i have finally found me!!!!  I am clean 11 months today as i sit here and write this......."Go with a spirit that fears nothing"  We all have the key that unlocks the chains that keep us down.  Stay strong          sara
Gizzy's
 have always had an addictive personality and experimented with lots of drugs, but when I found cocaine it brought me down so fast and before I knew it, i was hooked and my life completely changed. Cocaine consumed me and it did not leave my thoughts and as I built tolerance I started using more and more. After 5 years of heavy use, I made a small hole in my nose, my mind was shot and I was extremely unhealthy. I tried to quit, I went to N/A for a bit, tried to get in rehab, but kept relapsing and gave up. I prayed for death one night and soon after I had my 3rd and final overdose after being on a 3 week binge. I went into convulsions, my body was dripping sweat, and I started gagging on my own vomit. That is when I popped 2 ribs out of my back and was left on the floor for 6 hours unable to move until I got the ambulance. That was the night i accepted there were 2 options, quit or die. I chose to quit and try to get my life back.

Although I have had a couple relapses since then, they were short lived and I am almost 5 months clean again. At first I would not believed anyone that I could have been happy again and take back my life and improve myself. What helps me the most to stay clean is talking to other addicts, reading success stories and reaching out for support when I need it on here. Looking back now i don't understand how I let myself go that far down, but since those days life looks different now, it has colour and hope. I now accept I am powerless to cocaine, but I have become a strong man through all this and today I wake up knowing how lucky I really am.

Although some dont agree this site is recovery care, it`s the ONLY thing that has worked for me. I learned more about myself and reasons I used by opening up to close friends and posting on here. I learned tools to stay clean, I learned how different drugs affect the brain and most of all I learned that I am not alone. This is my recovery care and i thank all of you from the bottom of my heart, I would not be clean today without these posts:) Keep fighting the good fight everyone, time will heal our wounds so take back what is rightfully yours.
Lisa's
 Both of my parents died from their addictions when I was young. Both myself and my brother were exposed to drugs at an early age as a result. Between being left home alone for days on end with no food or money, having been tossed to different strangers homes and being left there so my parents could go out on their binges for days on end. Drug raids, random people in and out of our various apartments, and multiple foster homes, lets say we both learned what drugs could to do someone before we even hit puberty. Because of these events, I managed to not go near any hard core drugs pretty much my entire teenage life and well into my adult life.

I drank socially and smoked pot maybe twice, I didn't like how it made me feel. It wasn't until I was 24 that I had my first pill. I had a major toothache and my then Fiance (David) went and got me two 5mg percocets from a buddy of his, also while getting himself a couple for no reason. He had done them before so knew what to expect. I remember being petrified because I didn't like things that made me not coherent and I didn't know what to expect. Within a half hr I could feel the effects of the perc and I loved it. My toothache almost went away completely but the feeling I got was like nothing I had ever experienced. We both stayed up all night watching tv and we just loved how the pills made us feel. THat was it right there, that one toothache, that one pill, that one night changed my life forever.

We started to get percs on the weekends. We would get like 6 pills and take 2 on Fri each, 2 on sat each and 2 on sunday each and this was enough. Then it got to be like 10 on the weekends, then before I knew it, we were getting pills on the weekdays after work. I remember when I first realized I was in w.d if I didn't have the pills, David would say to me that he was w.d'ing if he didn't have the pills and I thought he was crazy. I didn't want to believe I could be addicted. Granted, I was waking up and so tired and didn't want to get out of bed unless I had pills to do it, I still didn't put two and two together. I started to get worst as time went on. We both realized we were going through w.d if we had no pills, so in the beginning of each week we would get enough pills to last us the entire week, which turned out to be about 20 pills a day, EACH. We were then introduced to Oxy Contin by our neighbor. He was David's "Friend". We thought we were catching a break with the price and mgs differences, but being introduced to Oxy Contin was the beginning of the end for us.

We were married in Oct of 05, it was a beautiful wedding that I couldn't even have dreamt of and we were both high during it. I had only taken what I needed to so I wouldn't be in w.d, but David did not, he took way too much and I later found out he was also taking xanax as well and he literally dipped out at the alter while we said our vows. It was hard to explain to family and friends why he did that. My best friends father, who rode on the trolley to the wedding with David, had to wake David up more then 3 times because he kept dipping out in the trolley ride over. It was mortifying.

To sum up my rather long story, what started out at one 5mg perc, eventually turned into 12 oxy contin 80mg pills a day, EACH. David bought houses and sold them after rehabbing them completely, so that is how we managed to afford our rather large habit. We had our home completely paid off, deed and all and had to re-fi so we could have more drug money. We became isolated and non-social. We both lost all our friends. We never went to family functions and lied to everyone about why. We were broke all of the time. In July of 06, David and I went to his family's vacation home and I woke up on Saturday July 8th to the screams of my sister in law telling me she could not wake my husband up and that he wasn't breathing. I instantly knew what happened and I was no where near him to possibly know, I just could feel it. I got up, literally flew down 3 flights of stairs and saw him there, cold and blue, my worst fear had come true, he had overdosed. I did everything I could to revive him and nothing worked. We called the paramedics and he had already been dead for 45 mins before we found him.

That was the most horrific thing I had ever been through, I knew I had to stop. I had to tell everyone at the moment what I thought happened because I wanted them to be able to save him, but it was too late. He had combined too much Oxy and xanax.

The next month was pure hell. We had both never w.d for more then a few days at a time, and I had to detox from almost 960mgs of Oxy Contin a day, all while attending his funeral and being with is family. It was indescribable to say the least. About a month and a half later, I relapsed and just didn't care. I took my addiction to new heights and got myself to about 15 80's a day, some days I took near 20 and a couple days, I took 20 in one day. '

The recovery! I found this website in July of 07, I finally knew I had had enough and looked into getting help. I was so scared and so lost I had no clue what to do. If it were not for this site, I wouldn't have even tried to get myself help, but the people here were so motivating and understanding. It felt like a god send. I went to a buprenorphine dr and got myself the bup shots and did that for 3 days and then detoxed the rest until I was completely clean. It worked for me and I remained clean for almost 3 months. I ran into my dealer and again, relapsed. I was devastated, but realized I wasn't looking into aftercare. I wanted to get clean and that was it, I didn't care about the help I would need to stay clean. Many, many addicts mistake getting clean for being the hardest part, but it isn't. Yes, it ***** and its not fun, but once you have really gotten yourself clean you will see that the w.d is the easiest part, its staying clean that's the real test. My second go around, I looked into meetings and also started to see an addiction counselor. THat changed my life. I realized that its a life long battle. I can't go near pain pills, even though I don't even like percocets, I know if I took one right now, I would fall right back down that hole. It took me so long to get out of it. I was in such a fog. I stopped paying my bills completely and was in danger of losing my home. I now have it up for sale because its so behind in mortgage payments. I almost let those pills ruin me completely. I let them take my husband and still couldn't stop. I think everyone needs to hit a rock bottom before they want to stop. I think there is a huge difference in trying to stop and actually wanting to stop.

All of our stories are different and personal, but somewhere along the line they all match up. Each and every one of us fell powerless to our DOC. Hopefully, any new members that come here and read our stories can get out before it gets really bad. I wish I would have known what I do now. I wish I could have stopped myself and my husband before I lost him
WORRIED'S
I think since my teenage years, I always experimented with drugs...never addicted to anything..but always enjoyed trying things..and was a social smoker as well.  I do believe that some have addictive personalities and we are born with it...what we end up doing with it may have alot to do with our environment..or life choices..also when your world is not the place it once was, when things come crashing down around you and you dont feel safe anymore..those prone to using..or those with addictive presonalities..can turn to substance abuse to cope...and that is what i did.  it was my divorce when I was 33 that triggered my abuse.  Picked up smoking full time then quit at age 40...but unfortunately I am still addicted to the mints and trying to do sumpin about it!  You would never thing nicotine could be so tough!  As my back conditioned worsened, lortabs were given to me.  The first few times I tried them they did nothing for me..in fact I did not like them...then one day..when the timing was right..I took 1/2 of a 10 mg and felt great!  I felt that empty hole go away and boy did that feel good.  later, at the end of my hydro addiction, it took 3 to get that same feeling and I was up to 80 -100 mgs a day.  Chronic pain and addiction is tough..but when the pills make you feel more miserable than the pain, something has gotta give.  For me it was the pills as the pain is not going anywhere.  I found other avenues of pain relief including yoga, heat, ice, ibuprophen, injections, and I even invested in an infrared sauna..love it!  I think if people do not seek support, like meetings, they are more apt to fail in that first 90 days..AA has a saying..90 meetings in 90 days as this is the time it takes for the brain to heal enough to where we feel like we can cope...the time it takes for the fog of depression and lack or motivation to lift and nrg returns.  People who try to do this alone, most often fail it seems.  And when an addict is sick and tired of being sick and tired..when they are just totally over the chase for the high they will never feel again...they will seek cleandom and do what it takes to hold onto it.  Off to work and good luck to all in the first 90 days...and also to those in the later phases, cos the battle is always there and recovery is ongoing.
Florida_Guy737
I was a jock all my life and just took it for granted that my bod would keep up.  In my late 30s while running my daily 7-10 miles, I fractured my knee (just broke).  Pretty painful stuff so they scoped the knee and said I messed it up pretty bad.  The docs started me with lortabs (never even heard of them before this) and started liking the feeling.  Long story short, within 5 years, I skipped to percs/patches and had completely stopped working out.  The docs even suggested knee replacement and methadone treatment.  

I finally said forget that and tapered for 3 weeks, quit, started exercising and dieting.  The exercise was extremely painful the first 6 months but how do you eat an elephant (one bite at a time).  Anyhoo...dropped 30 lbs, picked up some lean muscle mass again and can honestly say that I'm actually lifting stronger now than in my 20s...

I'll be hitting 15 months clean time soon (a milestone) and be looking forward to my 18 month and eventually 2 years.  I read that 2 years, everything should be pretty much back to normal...w/e that is :-).

This forum has really helped me stay clean...thx to all of you 4 sharing.

Guy
About this page
Rating
Tags: Addiction
MedHelp Health Answers