Pat- I'm glad you've got a call in! As for thyroid, a lot of doctors don't check your Free T3 and Free T4, which are the thyroid hormones that your body uses. They test TSH, which is thyroid stimulating hormone and is produced by the pituitary. Sometimes the range for that is too wide. I take a combination of Synthroid and Cytomel (T3) and the addition of cytomel seems to help with energy and depression. You might want to see if you can get a doctor to check your Free T3 and Free T4 levels to make sure they are optimal. It can make a big difference for energy. Just some info!
FMN, you might benefit from Coenzyme q-10 (100 mg/day, if possible), and Korean ginseng to help boost your immunity. Just make sure not to take the ginseng PM, and use an Asian variety rather than the American:
"Immune system health
Asian ginseng is believed to enhance the immune system, possibly helping the body fight off infection and disease. Several clinical studies report that Asian ginseng can improve immune function. Studies have found that ginseng seems to increase the number of immune cells in the blood, and improve the immune system's response to a flu vaccine. In one study, 227 participants received either ginseng or placebo for 12 weeks, with a flu shot administered after 4 weeks. The number of colds and flu were two-thirds lower in the group that took ginseng."
I bought some Korean ginseng at Walmart for about 5 bucks (100 mg capsules).
I'm discovering that there are a lot of beneficial herbs and supplements that work as good as or better then the chemical poisons that the pharmaceutical companies pedal.
Another negative side effect of tramadol is heart palpitations. I noticed that they have stopped completely now since I got off trams. I thought maybe it was because my thyroid meds were too high (200 mcg daily), but it wasn't.
Mandy here. Im doing better today. Even though I was 2 for two on my days, I am back to zero. I am still debating on the tapering slower, its such a psychological crutch, that Im amazed that even though Im fine( mostly) physically, Im a emotional time bomb. I went to Na last night and badgered a couple friends into listening to me and my fight, which led to listening to them and thier own battles. Its interesting that when you come out your really not alone.
This forum helps tremendously. Im committed to having talks with both my ( sponser person ) who I talk to each onth but not daily or even weekly. And my ex-husband who says he ( because of his past and adoption issues will always need me) I told him I feel the same since he helped me with this. I am really trying to keep, maintain my support system because its EVERYTHING TO MAINTENENCE for me. Getting off was one thing. STAYING off is a whole other war.
Thanks for listening, Im hearing alot about ginsing, does it seem to help with withdrawels or?? I wish Id have known that.
Im off to torture myself at the Training, track, and gym. Tonight I have people Im talking to and getting together with so I dont get tempted to ( fix) my muscle pains,.. I really want to get back to my old athletic self, I just think I have to adjust to tolerating pain, and letting myself grow. I keep trying to everything ALL AT ONCE.
Patience, acceptance for yourself is a big key.
Take care--FMN !!! We all need your advice here!!
Hang in there AMY!!!!
I have been in and out as I went CT, and I also had heatstroke last summer which delayed my going off the meds until I was feeling safe, and healthy enough to deal with the double agony. Honestly--heat stroke was worse so staying off meds so I dont numb myself is really important to my butt. I run myself ragged, I have to let me body tell me sometimes.
"Hey!! Im tired!!"
Not sure about all the W/D affects, Mandy, but ginseng maybe will give you a boost in energy. Perhaps worth a try. I used another herb which helped get me through the worst of the W/D. It has some psychoactive (opiate and stimulant) effects that got me over the hump: kratom. I wanted to be careful to not just switch dependencies. Email me if you'd like to learn more:
Interesting how many people have thyroid problems. I always wondered if my autoimmune thyroid issue was triggered by past addictions. Mine seemed to get triggered when I quit smoking and drinking. Seems like years of damage to ones body could set off an autoimmune reaction.
Possibly JG525. There is one school of thought that says the mercury in fillings contributes to autoimmune thyroid disease (hashimoto's thyroiditis) because the thyroid gland is said to concentrate the mercury. More likely, though, there is an hereditary element. My mother and brother both have the same condition. I lost thyroid function years before I became addicted to tramadol. That said, it is quite possible that certain substances can bring it on sooner. It does make you wonder if thyroid disease is on the rise or just diagnosed better. Thanks for the interesting discussion. :o)
I dont know if 8 hours is a "normal" time frame between posts. ( could be my computer) ..but i just wanted those who are out there reading...to know..we are still here... the fire is still burning... i guess i came here because i was looking for some light..just know that everyone has different time zones..crazy lives, etc. the fire will always be here..im trusting that..so please hang on, hang in... so much love and wisdom and strength here... you are not alone. we are all in this together
in gratitude, Love & peace..
desperategranma- who cares if it is a normal time frame or not? one of us will probably always be here, thanks to time zones - and either way, just writing know that others are there can give us hope enough.
it is intersating, the link between thyroid problems and addictions...i wonder if hormones have a play on the chemicals in our brain, making some people more susceptible then others? Then again, I think tramadol is a drug in and of itself that it doesn't matter who you are or what you are doing in life, it's gonna get in you and tear you down, little by little.
I took 6 tabs today, but I hope to be down to 4 by tomorrow. I have to backtrack and wean myself back down from the dosage I received while in the hospital, which is taking way too long...and to think I was suppose to be on 3 tabs at this point.
I am just posting as another update and hopefully as help to someone thinking that they can't quit tram. I just can't believe how much better I feel now that I haven't had one for about a week and a half. The thought to take another one comes and goes as quickly as I remember the hell that w/d was. NEVER again will one of those things enter my home let alone my body! I didn't realize the chaos it was creating in my body even when I didn't realize it. I feel so "normal" now and it feels fantastic. My energy is back, my positive outlook is back. I actually love life again and am not trying to numb myself all the time. Even when I start to feel stressed, I think about working out and doing positive things to help through the stress. I was on an anti depressant and have stopped taking it (somewhat by accident b/c I haven't gotten my refill yet). I don't feel like I need it at all. I'm up tonight b/c I can't sleep (still a side effect that I'm working on from my tram issues, but also a life long prob.) but I don't want to just cry all night. I'm just not sleepy. Such a new feeling for me. I was always afraid of not sleeping b/c it meant I was up with my stress and no release. I now look back and realize a lot of my stress came from money issues. I was a stay at home mom and enjoyed it, but the lack of cash flow was so stressful that I couldn't enjoy the kids. I just started a new job and have found just the little bit of extra money that I am making and the change of pace being back in the working world has actually made me less stressed. I thought I would be crazy overstressed with both working and being a mom. I've actually found that my husband has picked up and helped more than I gave him credit for. Life has taken on a whole new positive outlook for me. I just hope it can stay that way. Here's to healthy living! :) You guys can find a new life after tram too. I do think that for me the new job (as a distraction from thinking about pills) was a HUGE help. Whatever you can find to distract you might help and talking, talking talking to anyone that you trust and coming here helped me realize I wasn't alone!
Things I DO NOT miss about taking Tramadol:
1. Hiding pills in various places around the house and car in case my 'stash' was found
2.Lieing to my husband (and the world!)
3.Being so wired from taking so many pills that I would snap at my own kids(and husband)
3. Dreading walking into FedEx knowing that they knew what was in my package(I always picked it up so it wouldn't get delivered to my house while my husband was there-another sneaky lie)
4. The w/d and hangover I felt every morning
5. The ups and then the downs as it wore off
6. My forgetfulness
7. The FOG...you all know that one
8. The panick that I would get caught
9. The lies
10.Scary weight loss
11.Chemicals flowing through my body, bad chemicals
12. The recklessness while on these pills
I'm sure there are more things that I will think of, but, for now, that is what I have.
Amy you are right..."normal" how can i even use that word in my vocabulary these days.....for some reason..feeling low and seeing no activity for those hours out here made me feel lonely & vulnerable and i guess I was really giving myself a pep talk....i got stuck on that...my apologies.. the note about thyroid is interesting..as i have hypothroidism diagnosis for 20 years now..and taking the levoxyl....hang in there..we know there is hope. ..yesterday was a very hard day for me...i went to the yard and started digging up dirt ..old perennials..for 3 hours until i was so exhausted..but it was a great distraction..and helped lift the depression a bit.
Jill..congratulations ..you sound awesome!! what great inspiration ..to keep on keeping on
Bode...great list..in particular #6 & 7...and i would add..counting the pills...counting to make sure im going to have enough or the horror of realizing im short.
Chess- It definitely seems to be hereditary for some. I have Hashimoto's too. My grandmother had a goiter, but outside of that I don't have a strong family history. No mercury fillings for me either, but I wonder if some of the chemicals in cigarettes have similar toxins. I quit almost 4 years ago. I've heard things about flouride too. We just don't know what a lot of the environmental impacts are from the way we raise animals, pollution, drugs, etc. I'm not saying any of it is true, but who knows? Autoimmune illnesses seem to be on the rise in general.
Pat- Just make sure your thyroid meds are optimal. Lots of people are undertreated with a T4 only med like levoxyl and do better when they add T3 (Cytomel) or use natural thyroid meds. Or sometimes more T4 is okay. Have they checked your thyroid levels recently? I just know they can be thrown off by weight loss, gain and shocks to the system like stopping a drug.
We just found out that my stepdad has a cancerous tumor on his lung and in his trachia. I'm at the hospital now and he's been taken for a nuclear test to establish the stage and spread of it. He's been my second dad since I was 4 or 5, so really sad for my mom and I.
Chess, this reminded me of something I read recently, to the effect that we cannot complete the process of grieving until we 1) let go of what we have lost, and 2) accepted what is now in its place. (I added the numbers.) Many times I have thought about the first part. The second part...that's what can be difficult if we allow it to be so.
Giving up a drug that we have relied on for whatever reason necessitates grief. We have to grieve what we have lost. And then, we must accept what we now have in its place.
For me, that is a huge part of healing. And it is also part of the reason I stay here with this amazing group. You all help me do that. Watching you do it helps me do it.
Jenny, prayers to you and your family this morning. Goodness. I am so sorry.
Bode, awesome list. It definitely helps to remember why we hated this crap enough to quit it. Thank you for sharing.
Amy and others, I too have thyroid disease. Graves Disease. I have a gut feeling it's related to the tramadol (autoimmune disease triggered by STRESS). But can't prove it.
Pat, the lights are ALWAYS on here. I'm one of the insomniacs who inhabit this awesome space during the strange hours. Haven't been writing as much because of illness. But I'm here.
Jenny honey..my heart goes out to you..i am so sorry..I am here for you...printed out what you said about the thyroid and going to ask my dr. if he can test for it. ..
Fmn...how are you feeling ..are you seeing any light at all..is this damn illness giving up the ghost yet?? Sure hope so.
sorry again..for my comment about time between posts..i know the lights are always on...i only have to read back over the past few years to know that fact ..that was just me feeling a bit alone and vulnerable at that moment.
Love, peace & strength.
Pat, it's been the craziest thing. I feel better for a while, and then WHAM...fever goes up, coughing fits resume, and the body aches are insane. Kind of reminds me of the tramadol withdrawal days! In fact...this morning I actually had the "brain zaps" again -- those weird electrical surges that shoot through the head and down the chest. Talk about a trip down memory lane...I wondered if it was some remainder of the tramadol effects triggered by the illness. I have to remember, I was on this drug for WAY longer than I've been off it.
Sweetheart, don't apologize. I come here often looking for Signs of Life when I'm feeling out of sorts. That's one of the beautiful things about this place. Those signs are always here. There is always a candle in the window, and that is so comforting.
Ok...that's it for me for now. Gotta go take some ibuprofen for the fever and lie down. Tomorrow will be a better day.
Thanks guys. Fmn- I hope you get your Free Ts checked to. Not sure what you've had to have done for the Graves...did you have RAI? I remember that graves means hyper usually as opposed to hypo.
Well, not good news for my family. My step-dad has small cell, fast growing lung cancer. He can't do chemo because of his health and aspiration (?) related to COPD and hyetal hernia. He can't have it removed either. So, that leaves radiation. They'll meet with the oncologist to see what stage it's in tomorrow. Not sure if they'll do the radiation or not. Depends on how it effects quality of life.
I am so thankful I came across this site. My tramadol bottle came up missing. I was actually looking for a site where I could buy cheap tramadol. It is interesting what I have been reading. I have not had any for 2 days and have been feeling agitated as well as having much pain. I have had no energy the last 2 days and I have begun sneezing a lot. I am glad I read the things I have read here. I would take 4 50 mg at one time and chew them to give me automatic results. That would last me the whole day. So, I will not order any tramadol but tough it out. So, there is forgetfulness with taking tramadol? Interesting, that may be what contributed to me losing my wallet and losing my tramadol bottle. Thanks for the site
Jen- so sorry about your Dad. (Mine died of lung cancer) I think you will enjoy every minute you spend with him---savoring, savoring those moments, the smiles, the love and gratitude you have about his presence in your life now and in the past.
It is a wonderful experience to be with someone at the end of their life. I am doing this with my mother right now. She has a rare and aggressive neuro disease that is taking her away quickly.
I am so glad I am sober, clean and PRESENT for both her and myself
Bode- GREAT list! thanks Hon.
Pat- you are loved. Your needs are ok, Sweets....we are all pretty much the same
my 23 y o daughter went on a business trip to Bankok last week....she was amazed at the number of people who live in cardboard houses..on about a dollar a day ....direct quote "Mama...they are HAPPY...happier than the people in Switzerland (where she lives, now) and in America..with all the wealth and material things and freedoms.....but basically people are pretty much the same"
what a kid
see the blessings in life?
my cup runneth over
you guys Rock!!!
FMN- speedy recovery, Hon
chess- thanks for all your well researched info...it is a great addition here, very informative
Mandy- good work, Hon...you push yourself hard, don't you. love? I am impressed with your awareness about the support network piece...it is tough staying off...putting the pieces in place to displace a VERY consuming relationship with the drug
Keep Going Amy..you are doing GREAT!!
Jill- yes!! work creates structure for me.....I encourage ANYONE to have a reasonable amount of structure in their life as a part of the strategy toward a life free and clean of Tram
see what you are learning, taking this counterintuitive risk? sometimes we just really don't know, do we....
And the Great one said
"come down to the edge"
And the people said
"no, we are afraid"
the Great one said
"Come down to the edge"
And the people said
"no, it is too high, we might get hurt"
And the Great One said
"Come down to the edge"
so they came
He pushed them!
and they FLEW----
and never knew fear again
Pat-so true! #13. Counting pills. I will definately NOT miss that!
Also, I often feel the same way when I come on here and there is no one writing for a while. You are not alone in your thinking! And, like FMN said, the light IS always on here. I do agree. You are so lovely, Pat. Keep going, keep going.
Jenny-I'm so sorry for the bad news. We are praying for your dad.
FMN-I think of you everyday! I hope you get better soon. I can relate to what you said about grieving...I think I am 'grieving' my loss of T's in a way. Although I hated what the T's did to me, it's still a loss as weird as that sounds. I cried my eyes out 2 days a go over something really rediculous(it seemed unbearable at the time) and I think it's my brain allowing my body to cry...I NEVER cry. I'm supposed to be strong. But I cried like crazy. My husband was wondering what was wrong with me! The next day, I felt better. Like something was let out. Strange feeling for me.
4leef-a shining star to me! Seriously. I love the quote from your daughter, and the poem, how beautiful.
Freedomfree-you are in the right place. A great place. Tell us how you are.
Glad you like it Bode, just sipping a little K and peppermint tea this morning. :-) Have NO desire whatsoever for trams. Your quote about counting--and no doubt, calculating--is somewhat humorous looking back. After reading it, I was curious about how many I actually did have, so I went to count again (4.75 tabs left, ha ha). Ah, the power of suggestion.
My 86 yo father takes one everyday and doesn't even realized he's hooked. I won't tell him because I believe W/D will do him more harm than good at this juncture, and because he hasn't upped his dose. I saw the receipt from Kroger, and he only pays 3 bucks for a month's supply!
About 11 days tram free now. No more W/D symptoms or feeling of dependency at all. I don't think I was too badly hooked this time. I've come to the conclusion that trams might be okay for very short term pain, like one or two days tops, but should be completely eschewed by those who have been addicted to ANYTHING before. Being honest with myself, I never did take them for pain (they really didn't even work as well as Tylenol for me in that regard), but to get buzzed.
So sorry to hear about you Step-Dad, Jenny, smoking is one of the most hideous addictions of all. Sergent 'Nick' is cruel master indeed. Takes so many young lives.
FMN, try some peppermint tea for the congestion, has menthol in it.
Received this in my mailbox this morning and wanted to share it with the group:
"When you go outside on a beautiful day and step into the sunlight, do you have to try to enjoy the warmth? Or is the warmth of the sun just part of what is there, and you are a part of it? Similarly, real meditation is effortless. It is the fulfillment of natural relationship, not the attempt on our part to create relationship. Your being itself is meditating, as it is a natural part of the whole.
The day will come when you will understand that if you are just present to your own body, you need not do anything more. The catch is that it takes a long time to realize that, for all of your efforts, you have done nothing except produce the sensation of having accomplished something. Authentic meditation could simply be described as a moment in which it is enough to be what I am.
The essential pain in our lives is born out of the idea that we can take something from the moment to complete ourselves. This action actually separates us from the moment, and keeps us from being present to the beautiful, quiet energy that naturally occupies the body. When you are in relationship with this natural energy, you will see how unnatural it is for you to take something from the moment in order to make yourself feel whole. Everything that you have always wanted is always being given to you, and meditation is the enjoyment of the gift."
Today I am grateful...as I come on this morning and read the posts from all my friends.. the comfort is incredible.
FreedomFree .welcome, welcome to this amazing place..you will find so much healing, wisdom and good solid information as you journey into "no-tram-land"... I wish you peace and and peace...with your battle.
4 Leef...you sound so healthy sweetie...and you are right..what an amazing girl you've raised..she sounds so wise beyond her young years..I am sorry about your Mom..but dear God isnt there something to be said for being "present" for yourself and for her ..as she makes this passing to the other side...that is so awesome!!
The Poem was absolutely beautiful..thank you for sharing...and know that YOU are loved so much.
Bode: i found this and i dont know the authenticity..but i thought it was interesting:
"Another chemical theory is that crying helps to release endorphins into the bloodstream. Endorphins are chemicals that act as mood-elevators and pain relievers" Keep crying honey...on the Trams..i havent been able to cry ..i mean really have a good cry...Im convinced that there IS a release that takes place when we do it..so im looking forward to that day.
Started my AD's yesterday...we will see how that goes..came clean to another close friend..got such love and support..
Have a good day and good weekend fellow warriors..so much love and peace to you all.
Chess- I have been reading about Guy since you have introduced him on this forum...I SO MUCH enjoy his message. I LOVED the piece on presence...how that is what we are looking for, that feeling of being complete and enough...just as we are....that our mistake is in trying to 'take something' from outside to ADD to it....that we lose the sense of oneness, completeness....(something like that) SO TRUE and so well said
Repetition is KEY for me....I used to say " I read that book"....like cruising through some material was enough...with this brain, my friends, I need to repeatedly expose my mind to new ideas...some days I write a phrase on a 3 by 5 and keep it in my pocket...as I reach for my pen I see it through out the day and am reminded of the concept...it helps my brain bend toward new patterns of thought like a flower twists toward the sunlight
Jen- let us know how things are going in this situation with your Dad, Honey...is next month your month for baby?
Bode- you are amazing! What a privilege it is to be a part of your journey
FMN- it is a loss...so true...I NEVER went ANYWHERE without them...so there was a subconscious awareness AT ALL TIMES about them...this is a loss..like walking around naked....exposed to life without the little whites..."where is my BLANKEY?!?!"
Pat - glad you are starting an AD..fri is your appointment, no? Glad you are risking with your friends and sharing...good for you! that was the pathway out of shame for me...most of them said 'big deal' about the drugs but 'how can I help you, Honey?' whew! rather than the picture I had in my mind that they would (face aghast) say I never want to have ANYTHING to do with you......(guess that was my projection of my self hatred, huh?) reality can be SO MUCH KINDER...but I have to let it in...........
the thing about my mom's illness and impending death is that...as I think back upon my childhood I have no memory of touch, or being held by her ever...neither my father...but as she drifts away...so do her defenses...Yesterday she let me rub her back because it was sore...then she held my hand as she laid in her bed in the nursing home....I enjoy having this experience with her...I know I am fortunate in my experience with my career that I have worked with many people 'making the transition; out of their bodies at the end of 'this thing called life' so I have a comfort with it and have always felt it to be such a privilege to be present with them...it is work, much like birth...everyone does it eventually..we never know when...knowing and preparing for it is very helpful...but it is still difficult...I have cried a lot going through this with her..but, like Bode says, the tears are SO WELCOME after the artificial 'shut down' from Tram is gone...an authentic presence feels so much better
Wow, I've been reading all of these posts for sometime now (a few months at least) and they've all really helped me get through this. I wanted to start by not giving a story or anything, but by simply stating that my loving girlfriend and soon to be wife (if all goes well) has helped me through my tapering process immensely. Without her I don't know where I'd be. I've never had a substance abuse problem, EVER before this, and really never thought I would. But after approximately a year on these pills, I have finally tapered and stopped. I started taking them in March of 2009 when I was studying abroad in South America. They were very easy to obtain once I had the first prescription and it seemed like a miracle... My stomach felt better, I had more energy, and I didn't fear the anxiety of daily life. As with everyone, my usage slowly increased and by the time I got back to the U.S. five months later, I thought I was going to die without them. I quickly found that you could buy them online. The reverse culture shock that I was experiencing obviously had so much to do with these pills as I was withdrawing from them. I was depressed, achy, etc, you name it, I felt it. So one bottle turned into two and pretty soon after moving across the country for the girl I loved and still do to this day, I committed myself to working out daily and cutting the pills down. I was doing a great job, but before I knew it, I had reverted to taking even more, sometimes up to 15 or 16 a day, possibly more; I really lost count until it got down to the end of each bottle. My girlfriend found out about my deep, dark secret, one that no one knew about and she confronted me about them. I lied and almost lost the only thing I truly cared about, the girl I met right off the plane in Argentina, the same one I spent five months gallivanting around with through the streets of Buenos Aires, and finally the one I drove from California to Virginia for. I've never fought so hard for something in my life, she consumed my thoughts, every single one of them. I've never fought so hard for something until now. I vowed be completely honest with her. These damn pills are nothing more than a poison, and my withdrawals have quickly gone from feeling sorry for myself to complete anger and rage at my naivety. I have been fighting this battle so much hard for the last month of tapering, constantly, day in and day out. I dropped from my highs of 800mg/day down to approx. 400mg/day instantly, the point at which I was suffering a little but nothing too bad. In that month did a pretty fast taper to 150mg/day and then to 50mg/day for one or two days down to nothing at all. I am at 48 hours free of Tramadol at this moment. I have a few questions and if anyone could shed some light on them it would be great!
1. Should I expect anymore of the opiate-like withdrawal symptoms to show up? I've been taking Lopermide HCL for diarrhea, 5htp capsules, usually like 4-6, 100mg capsules per day, and sub-lingual Vitamin B12 tablets.
It's really strange, but so far I have yet get the brain-zaps that I've had before when going from a high dose to nothing, and I'm wondering if this will show up or not...
2. I slept descent last night, maybe 7 hours worth without too much waking, maybe once every two hours or so. I am taking 3mg Melatonin before going to sleep, Highlands Restful Legs sub-lingual lozenges, and usually a couple teaspoons of a generic for Nyquil. Will sleep become a problem the further I go without Tramadol?
3. I've worked everyday since I've been tapering, well the days that I am scheduled, and even a few overnights here and there. I am a residential counselor at a school and have constant daily interaction with students/staff. Will I find it hard at any point to be around people, going to work, etc? So far the only things I've suffered from are some anxiety before work and lack of energy, i.e. getting really tired at the wheel on the way there, my shoes feel like lead boots, etc...
If anyone can give me a heads up on this stuff or anything else I should be looking for or that I could be doing to get a jump on common symptoms, please let me know! The only other symptoms that I've been dealing with, especially in the last few days are lack of focus, foggy mind, and really lack of articulation. Normally I have no problem with a range of vocabulary and no problem expressing myself or giving directions at work, but the last few days have been a challenge!
Right 4-leaf, trying to ADD by running around in circles and getting nowhere. Another thing we do--mostly unconsciously--is compare, compare, compare, and is part of why we always feel that we're lacking, or live in fear that we won't somehow measure up. That's SLAVERY!
You're welcome, Pat, you guys have inspired me to do research and, as a consequence, helped me find many things helpful to myself. Like safer ways to lower cholesterol.
I'm convinced that many pharmaceuticals are poison, and that there are much healthier substitutes out there for what ails us.
Awhile back a friend of mine, who was normally quiet and sensitive, joined the marines. They screwed up his head so bad, he had to go to a mental hospital. While there they put him on powerful psychoactive drugs. I accidentally ran into him one day and he was making weird motions with his hand. The drugs were actually damaging his nervous system! We walked together for a spell and I told him he should try to ask his doctor if there was a way he could reduce his meds. He was too far gone to hear me. Thought is was so sad because he was a good guy.
That's why I try to encourage you all in here to get off the poisons that these devilish pharmaceutical companies promote, especially those chemicals that keep us from facing and dealing with what me must. I've come to think of you all as family. :-)
4leef- Next month was when we were supposed to start trying for a baby. I don't know how that will play out now. Needless to say, I'm not feeling like making one right now! But, if I knew my step-dad would be here awhile, I'd love to have one with him still here.
His oncologist has recommend chemo. Risky for him, but the doctor thinks it's worth it. He's scared right now and doesn't want to do it, but will hopefully change his mind next week when they meet with him again. Otherwise, two to three months left.
Thanks for thinking about the baby thing. It's something I feel selfish for thinking about now, but it was my plan LOL. It may get a little sidetracked.
Hey finally _Free! Congrats! I am 10 days off Trams after 10 YEARS on! Talk about finally free!
The brain zaps usually occur when you up the dose, not taper. I wouldn't expect any.
If you're sleeping okay, you've beaten the odds, because that seems to be the biggest post tram issue other than general malaise and depression. Try to avoid Nyquil, it's loaded with alcohol which could add to depression and morning fogginess.
The overall WD is about 7 days, but minor symptoms can occur for up to a month, but don't assume that will happen. I feel pretty good after a month long taper. I put up with the WD stuff while tapering and I guess it was the right way to go (for me) because the post Tram problems have been fairly minor. I've been sleeping okay, no major complaints. Hard to believe after 10 years of usage!
One thing I have to add-I've been exercising every day-and I hate it. But it's DEFINITELY helped my sleep. The one day I didn't was the worst sleep I've had since going completely off. So now I force myself on that stairmaster (I watch a movie while I'm on it!) and it's become part of my recovery. It also helps me feel less foggy as well.
Wummick - Wow, 10 years, yea I guess you are finally free!!! I really appreciate all the advice! I guess I was a bit worried because what I am feeling now is nothing close to what so many people have described as the general withdrawal symptoms after two full days off the tramadol. Apparently the tapering helped me greatly too.. I must admit I was really, really nervous for the first days with zero! I dealt with a lot of physical discomfort and pain during my taper period, so maybe that part won't come back? You'd think 48+ hours would be enough time for the most difficult withdrawal effects to appear, right? I know it's just a waiting game now, but I've got work everyday this week and have since last Saturday. Saturday and Sunday coming up are over 22 hours combined of work, so I guess that was my main concern. As soon as I feel a little less lethargic I am going to start working out again, it was really something I loved to do. Mentally I feel down, and definitely have mood swings. One minute everything is fine, the next I'm in the endless abyss of no return. It's just a really uncomfortable feeling I guess. Anyhow, if you have any insight into the next few days, I would greatly appreciate it. Once again, my main question is when do the withdrawals seem to be most intense within that seven day period?
Thanks so much, and congratulations, my victory seems minor compared to 10 years!!!
FinallyFree, congratulations!!! At 48 hours tram-free, you would probably be experiencing more pronounced symptoms if that were going to happen. Sounds like the taper was a good route for you to go, and that is probably why you're feeling so few of the hellacious WD effects that can accompany a cold turkey approach. Your attitude sounds great, and that will help you tremendously should any symptoms show up at this point. So glad you are sleeping. The loperamide has a sedative effect, in addition to helping soothe the angry opiate receptors in the intestines. It was a life saver for me during the first week or so.
Exercise, distraction, and nutrition are key, in my opinion. Feed yourself good quality foods -- plenty of H2O, quality proteins. B12 is a miracle worker for many of us. As for the articulation issues...you and me both, my friend! I was plagued for weeks with memory and word-finding problems. But take heart...it's short-lived. All the transmissions in your brain will resume normal function very soon.
The mood swings are also a very normal part of the healing process. This drug really grabs hold of the emotion centers in our brains. It takes a bit of time to re-establish equilibrium, and it can get a little stormy at times. Just hang in there. When you feel down, angry, overwhelmed, or otherwise out of balance, just take a moment and reflect on the fact that it's a healing symptom. For me, that was helpful. I tended to react too much to the emotions, which only made them worse. Just observe, realizing they are fleeting, and part of the healing process. Breathe deeply if you feel anxious or angry. When you feel sad, exercise can really help. The chemicals in our brains that help us feel that precious sense of well-being are released in higher quantities when we exercise. It can definitely help.
I am amazed at the strength and courage of all of the warriors here. What a tough battle we fight. But through sheer determination and strength, we are winning one day at a time.
Just checking in. I did refill the last refill. And am planning to just talk to my sponser. And my support system. Its not ultram but the last of the vic that my dr. gave me, and something called clonidine and robaxin I think? So if I chose to taper slower with all the work, teaching, writing, racing and other things that I need to keep me distracted.I will have something to detox with the 2nd time.
Thing is, I dont feel like I need much if any of it. I do at times. But asIve said earlier, my psychological battle is the hardest right now. I have also recently had my ex significant other coming back into my life and Im under no presupposition that its because he forgives me at all for my bad choices. I just only get anxious and obsessive about thinking I ( need ) a pill on hand when I cant handle people. I feel so many emotions, and FMN : I really like how you put it, : "Notice the ranges of emotions as a healing process or part of it". When I go through things yesterday like, my ex wanting to be in closer after the horrid break up, I have to remind myself to be a bit selfish sometimes, to protect my investment.
I am as many of us, now in the begining stages of recovering, and the ocd does have a pattern.
One of the benefits of posting continuously--is seeing the pattern to my compulsiveness and knowing it will pass like, FinallyFree: was talking about.
Knowing to, sit down take a deep breath and remember it will pass.
Thanks all, god bless and HANG TOUGH!!!
Wish me luck on only using the remaining pills for a dire freak out, or big, big WD symptom. Ive never managed having them on hadn very well. Who has. Im impressed at those who can do that. I had to CT. Because I have two gears, go fast zoom, zoom, or stop and sit.
Pacing ourselves seems to be very important I realize now, that this will be a challenge for at ( LEAST ) a few months to not accept, or ask for refills I DONT NEED.
I am working on my discipline. Wow.
I have been lurking for a long time, watching your progress. There is so much GOOD support in this place. It is so great to see those who have waded through the desert, coming back to serve as guides for the pilgrams who follow behind. We are all, after all, just pilgrams finding our way through the pharma jungle created by those manufacturers and marketing companies desiring to become fat off the suffering and indebtedness they have saddled us with.
Guides like FMN, Jenny, and others, beautiful caring support. God bless you guys.
Withdrawal from this drug is absolutely no fun. My heart goes out to those of you still trying to decide whether to continue your tapers or to jump off cold turkey. From my own experience, as long as I was taking the drug, it had it's hooks in me and I felt desperate to keep a supply ahead of me. My heart goes out to all still suffering. There IS life after tramadol. It's just hard to see that in the valley of tramadol despair. You can make it though. You'll see.
On that first day when I decided that I WAS DONE, that I didn't need to ever take tramadol ever again, I counted up the days of defeat that I had accumulated over the more than 6 years of daily use of tramadol. And I determined that TODAY didn't need to be dictated by yesterday's failures. So just for fun, i tallied up my WIN-LOSS record. And if you were to go back into my early posts, I declared that I was on my way, that my win-loss record was 1 WIN - 2,190. LOSSES.
I light heartedly remarked after 60-90 days that my win-loss record of 60 - 2,190 wouldn't qualify me to coach a U8 girls soccer team. But it's tiny moments after tiny moments. And then one day you realize that you are no longer keeping track of the moments.
Anyone who has counted pills and suffered regular withdrawal while ON this horrible drug like I did, probably knows the worst of what I came to learn was acute withdrawal.
No two people are alike, so my experience won't be like everyone else's experience. But see, I am a real addict/alcoholc. Generally quite functional (I thought) through each of my addictions, but addicted easily to all drugs I have ever tried. I should have known when my doctor moved me from hydros to the new "non-addictive analgesic, tramadol" after hip surgery that I would have problems. But I continued taking this RAT POISON for six more years.
The original surgical hip pain (the reason I was prescribed Trams) had long since vanished, but I'll be damned if I didn't begin to have PAIN in places in my body tha I didn't know existed. So like some of you, I went "hat in hand" to my doctor evry so often, so he would renew my prescription for the (by then) needed poison. Tramadol CAUSES PAIN. Our bodies develop TOLERANCE to the drug, such that it takes more and more of the drug (over time) to make us feel BARELY unwell at all. In the end, it hardly matters why we began the journey. It's a chemical dependancy/physical addiction in the end for most of us. So we keep taking more and more just to feel LESS UNWELL.
I planned vacations away from home around my RX cycle for YEARS. I had RX day circled on my calander every 21 days and I lived for that day when I could leave work in the middle of the day, drive to the pharmacy, and pick up my much needed new "supply" of my drug. and for the next several days, I took more than my prescribed "dose" just so I would feel LESS UNWELL for a few days out the 21 day cycle. And by days 15-21, I limped along in constant withdrawal, feeling fluish, unable to sleep, and basically experiencing withdrawal for several days every 21 day cycle.
Insanity they say, is doing the same thing over and over in the same exact way...and expecting different results. I suppose I exhibited some insane attributes. But I choose to think I was simply addicted. Hopelessly addicted to the drug that was promised to be the safe alternative to "real opiates".
By the grace of a higher power, I am clean today, but there has NEVER been any drug that I began, that I didn't become addicted to without much trouble. I pray to God that most people reading this cannot relate. But for those "special" addicts like myself, I offer some of the secrets I have picked up in the 15 months I have been OFF TRAMADOL:
(1) You won't be free of tramadol until you stop taking tramadol. You can come at this slowly or you can jump off quickly like some us did. But the reality is that the PAIN of acute withdrawal won't end until you put 5-6 days between yourself and the last lovely white pill.
I have successfully quit smoking, drinking and tramadol. But if you are a real addict like I am, you will not be able to taper off any of these things. I am convinced that I am defenseless against that first drink, that first cigarette (that still calls my name), and yes, the first tramadol. Because, see, I don't seem to understand that word "moderation". Give me a small stash of tramadols and one of those WTF moods, and I am off to the races again. I pray that nobody understands where I am speaking from..
(2) Suffering DOES have an ending. The hope that waits before each one considering "jumping" is that withdrawal won't last forever. In fact, I suspect that most of us KNOW about EVERY symptom we will go through (again) when we say goodbye to this drug. If you are like me, you have experienced withdrawl every RX cycle anyway. I determiend for myself that if I could only put a few MORE days together than I had regularly in the past, I could reach that ENDING of acute withdrawal.
(3) WAR, I recall 15 months ago reading some of Emily's early journal entires. And I came across someone named Cadillac Jack, who told me that "unless one developed a warlike attitude toward this drug, the battle could not be won. So I considered our friends in the military, how they must prepare for any battle. Not a casual thing entered into lightly. Taht first week ofr December 2008 was the hardest week of my adult life. You see, it took every ounce of strength I could muster to defeat this drug. That's why I can't candy coat this. It is WAR that we must do with tramadol.
(4) Tramadol will not go gently into the night. It desires to posses every user. I recall one tramadol coming on here over a year ago now, who was trying to whip T. He had been a heroin user and he told us that this was more difficult to quit than heroin. It has taken your name and if you are like I was, it has kicked you to the curb and told you, you will not win. That is the FOE each of us faces. And it is out of my respect for the power of this horrible drug, that I became such an apoligist for standing and fighting an all out war. Respect but do not FEAR the FOE.
Fred, It is AWESOME(I could cry!) to have you come back now and then to give us all your words of wisdom and experience. You always gave me hope and still do. You are a beautiful writer and express what I wish I could!! Thank you for being here for me and everyone else. I've missed you so much. You and Emily were there for me when I first came here March 1, 2009 when I was in the worst struggle of my life. You helped to SAVE me.
I am free from T's since Jan. 13th 2010 and free from suboxone for over a week. I feel well, besides a bit of lethargy. I am sleeping at night and able to work everyday with anough energy to support twenty three 3 and 4 year old children(wewf!!) and then come home to my own young children. I am exercising, trying to eat well and my relationship with my husband has made a 180 degree turn. Being in therapy with a wonderful doctor has helped immensly. She has reminded me that I can only control me. I can not change anyone else. I can only change me. And I have.
I am thinking of all the Tram warriors here today and pulling for you.
FMN, I really appreciate all of the kind, thoughtful words. I am going onto 72 hours now tramadol free. At this point I'm not expecting anymore of the acute withdrawal symptoms to pop up, maybe some less pronounced ones later in the coming weeks, but no more 'opiate' like withdrawal symptoms. Aside from having a little bit of trouble sleeping around 5a this morning, I had a full night's rest. I did have some RLS symptoms last night, but a hot bath and some of the restful leg tablets solved that for the most part. Still taking the 5htp capsules approximately three times a day as well as lopermide for my bowels. Mentally I'm a bit on edge, a little more worried about things, and everything seems about 10 times worse (at times) or 10 times better (at other times).
Fred, I thought you put together a great post as well. I wasn't able to finally give the pills up (which were never needed in the first place I'm sure) until I began to believe that it was a battle. It was the tramadol or everything I loved and desired in life. There was no in between. At no time in the fight is there a, 'well, you can have 4 tramadol per day, keep your beautiful girlfriend and go on with your life happily'. It was her and every wonderful, amazing thing in my life or the pills; the same ones that made me stress constantly about any bit of extra money I had, the same ones that I always worried would run out at an important time in my life when I needed them the most to avoid sickness, and the same pills that turned my life upside down from each subtle lie that I had to make to avoid confrontation. Tramadol did something to me, it made me hide things and conveniently leave things out that I would have never done before. I have always been one of the most upfront, most honest people anyone could ever be around, but I slowly found myself having to retrace and hide every footprint I didn't want anyone to see or get a hint of. It was a terrible feeling. If, at some point during a conversation with my girlfriend, my attention would turn from her to staring into blank space, 9 times out of 10 it would be me thinking about something to do with those damn pills. Whether it was how to get off of them, or how I would hide my next few steps, or how I would simply get more before I ran out, the concern was always there. It was a burden I carried with me for so long, that no one knew about, that no one COULD know about. All I can say is enough is enough. At 3 days off of Tramadol, I am not going back. I have not craved a pill and to be honest I am having trouble putting other ones into my body. I am not on any other prescription meds, and am not looking to be anywhere in the future, but even the thought of putting the natural supplements and lopermide into my system makes me cringe.
I guess I finally do feel like I am free. Thank you all for your support and even before I ever posted here so much of the mystery and guess work was taken away by all of your thoughtful posts!
Grateful Dad..welcome...I hope you've seen Fred's post above...wow...thank you Fred..Bode is right..incredible insight and wisdom and such honesty..Fred .I am fairly certain I possess similar addictive qualities that you do..while others out here may only stuggle with the Tramadol ..I have addiction to food, alcohol and tranquilizers in addition to the trams...Many years ago during 60's &70's i was addicted to amphetamines...got off that merry go round....i would say that I've taken other opiates like hydrocodone and oxy for back injury..by the grace of God..i hated that stuff and got off it immediate..the dr. said the Tram was every so much kinder and gentler and not addictive. He now knows better..I've started my withdrawal journey..with taper..for me this seems to be the best way..i've had the withdrawal symptoms..but addressing them with supplements - some parts of the Thomas method...antidepressant, and actually maintaining the xanax to help with the anxiety part of the withdrawal i'll deal with getting off the xanax after the trams are done...I've come clean with my dr. which has been a good thing..he now monitoring me and making me accountable to him..I am seeing a psychotherapist who has experience with addiction. When I told her about my addiction..she didnt bat an eye..(im expecting others to express the same disgust with me that I have with myself) I've shared with a very few close friends who are being supportive (the secrecy/shame part of this will keep me using and beating myself up) that is why it is important to get support. . Others have suggested the importance of exercise...and I agree...just that my body is so tired from the battle..im trying to rally the energy...i will though..Fmn has suggested good foods..healthy foods..lots of water...B12... Im on heavy B regimen..as well as L-Tyrosine.. For me..this room..these precious warriors out here helped give me the courage to take these first steps...I've been approximately 3-4 weeks now taper..i expect to go 2 more months until im completely clean..perhaps sooner..and I wont judge myself for taking this time..im not counting my pills right now..because i have not deviated at all from my taper...only to take less..rather than more occasionally. i know when this bottle is done..the refill qty will be filled by 1/2..and i will go from there..others have suggested i move my taper along quicker..if there are days i can..i will..but i cannot judge myself for how im doing this..the important issue is i AM doing it. and when i feel lost and vulnerable and wanting to use more I only need to come to this post and i get the strength and encouragement to continue on.
So..I've said enough..im so damn wordy..i do apologize ..it's like journaling in a way..but public journaling and not necessarily everyone needs or wants to hear me go on and on..but..maybe there is someone out there reading who shares my story and can have some hope...if that is case..then these words are worth it..
God bless all of you ...waging this battle..Like Fred said this is WAR.....this drug will not give up easily...so i Pray i will not rest on my laurels or feel smug as i have my little victories..i only know that the Tram is sitting over in the corner waiting to pounce on me again..and believe me this drug knows my every weakness...it has poisoned my mind to believe that i cannot survive without it...WELL SCREW YOU TRAMADOL!!!!!
Love, hugs, strength, courage, peace...
and for all the newcomers..(i am still new also) you are in the right place..keep coming back..read, write if you will..so much help out here..just ask..folks are here for you.
I haven't posted in a while but I have been reading the posts every day. I completed day 30 yesterday. Yay for me. I feel just about 100% "normal" again. Still a little foggy in the head - but hey - maybe that is my normal and I just forgot after being on the whities all of these years. LOL
Pat - you are sounding so much stronger lately. I think your AD meds are helping you because your "tone" in your posts are more positive and war like. Good for you.
Finally Fred - please post more often. Between you, FMN, 4Leef, Bode and Grandma Pat, your words help me everyday and I have learned so much about myself and my addictive behavior and how to prepare myself mentally for the times when my brain tries to trick me into thinking I need to go back to my old ways.
Thanks again everyone and stay strong over the weekend.
Susan...DOUBLE YAY!!! Congratulations...you inspire me to keep going..thank you...you know how the days..go...one day..not so great..next day...feeling better..a roller coaster ride to be sure.....Have a wonderful weekend...I can't wait to get to 30 days out like you...go sister!!
Pat- I agree. I think the AD is helping you! You're doing great. Sounds like you've fought a lot of battles over the years. I always knew if I touched amphetamines, I would be addicted to them, so it was one thing I never did...partly because of access. I was a major problem drinker and smoker and quit when I was 26. I was also very into coke and some party drugs for awhile in my early 20s and got VERY lucky that I stopped running with that crowd and by default stopped the drugs! Somehow, tramadol reminds me more of a speedy drug than of pain pills. Or maybe a mix. I don't think pain pills would be my first choice. I've always been more into food than I should be, although not to the point that I'd go to OA I don't think. Honestly, my primary addiction was probably cigarettes! Everything else has been filling that space because I haven't been working a program for that and my drinking. Thank god I quit though.
Gratefuldad- You can do this! Sounds like you have a child or more, so try to focus on them. Others here have been in a worse space.
Fred- Great to hear from you. I've always believed I'm an addict through and through too. I'm trying to live life without substances now.
I am still working with my psychiatrist and therapist to get off my AD and klonopin at night. My klonopin I've tapered to 0.75mg this week. So far, so good. I'm down to 10mg of Prozac after getting off the Effexor. I've decided to stay on that for now or possibly try 5mg with the stuff with my Step-dad. Seems counter-intuitive to go off it when someone you love might die soon. I'd just be right back on it.
We found out that chemo is the only viable option for him and that it MIGHT be okay with his COPD and hyetal (?) hernia. He will try it next week. With no treatment, he'd die in 2-3 months. If the chemo works, it could mean a year or more.
If anyone one here smokes, get help. I know how hard it is to quit, but it is a real killer. I was a hardcore smoker, like my stepdad and quitting was harder than tramadol or alcohol or any of it. My stepdad wishes he'd quit sooner though and hates that after years sober, this will be what gets him.
Sorry...not to nag anyone about their addiction! I get it :).
I too have been following this groups for a while now. I'm (was) a 12 year Tramadol user....I had tried to occasionally get off them or "take a break"....no luck. Its hard to explain, but its almost like something snapped inside me last December and I just opened my eyes and said I just don't want to live like this anymore. My patterns were identical to alot of the good people here in terms of stressing as the bottle got closer to empty, stressing when it was time to go back to the doctor to ask for another prescription. Finding myself turning the car around to go home because I forgot to take some pills with me ( regardless of how far away I was ). Simply needing them to get through life. Ive forgotten what it was like to really "feel". To have up's and down's.....instead of that even keeled "drone" that Tramadol turns you into.
I'm on day 22........it took a two month taper, and some ridiculous withdrawls......but here I am. I'm still scared, embarassed, dissapointed in myself, but I am slowly starting to feel a little excited.....the fog is lifting, and the future looks much brighter. Ive followed many of the suggestions I have found here to get me through the worst of it...the exercise, suppliments, healthy diet.....all have worked like a charm (for me so far). Sleep is still a battle......my pattern has been to fall asleep for an hour or two, then wake up "wired". I end up watching TV until I fall back to sleep......My average has been 4-5 hours a night for about a month. I broke down and called my doctor last week and spilled my guts about coming off the Tram.........she called in a script for Ambien. I took it for three days this week and slept pretty well...at least 6 hours. I would still wake up (with that wired feeling) , but I forced myself to stay in bed until I fell back to sleep. As a side note...when I called the doctor and spoke with the nurse (who has been there for years) I asked her if she ever heard of insomnia being a side effect for patients coming off long term Tramadol use....her exact words were "well....no...not really"....can you believe that crap. I just wanted to see what her answer would be....I could tell she was full of $%#*. Talk about trying to cover your butt.....
I hate like hell that I had to resort to another prescription medication, but I was getting desperate. My wife is a saint, she has been there for me every step of the way with nothing but support. I am beyond lucky when it comes to her. I have decided to try again to sleep unaided (no Ambien) tonight. I have tried Meletonin, Chamomille tea, Valerian Root, Benedryl, Kava Kava, cough medicine, everything I could think of "over the counter" to try. I know everyone is different but if there is anyone else out there who had sleep issues for this long....I'm wide open to suggestions!
Thank you all just for being here....my heart goes out to each and every one of you....I share in your pain, and applaude all of your efforts......there is great strength here!
Bodegrl, You are doing SO fabulously. YAY Bode...and congratulations on being off sub for a week as well.
Jenny, I have to tell you, I just stopped smoking myself three months ago after decades of smoking. There are some "transferral lessons with stopping any addiction, so here are mine.
The night before my quit date, I was fairly sure that there was no way in the world that I would make it until noon without a cigarette. I was crying like a baby already over the loss of my old friend(s) smokes. To NEVER smoke again. Uggh!
Now the physical withdrawal from cigarettes is nothing compared to tramadol withdrawal. But the anxiety and mental craving with cigs is horrid. At least it was for me.
I tried to practice what got me through those first days off tramadol. Staying in the moment. Noon seemed like a long way off. Tomorrow was a place I couldn't even visit, and forever...not a place to even consider. I was not at all sure about five minutes from the present, but I was at least capable of NOT smoking in the moment.
And you guys know the story...moments turn into twenty minutes...which turns into an hour...and eventually you compile 24 hours. That is dang near a day. Weeks and months tend to take care of themselves if we take care of the tiny moments we call the present. And you can quote me on that one.
Finally Free, Congratulations on 72 hours. Keep adding moments. I'm not convinced you are out of the woods, though for your sake, I hope so. Tramadol withdrawal is funny (not ha ha either) You might have 2-3 days of progress and then the next day you will have worse symptoms than the day before. But our only hope is to keep putting those moments between you and the last lovely little white pill. I believe in you Free.
Susan, Thanks for your kind words, but honestly, you guys are doing a pretty good job taking care of one another. I will never be far away, but I may not post here every day. Remember though, I am just a PM away, okay?
Addictions/dependancies - I don't believe that everyone who tries tramadol will become addicted. (but we know who we are that have become addicted, yes?) However, I am convinced that every person who takes tramadol will become DEPENDANT on the drug. EVERY one will develop a tolerance to this drug. And EVERY one will slowly find that where 1-2 pills a day seemed adequate at the start, our bodies become tolerant to the drug over time, such that it may take 3-4 to do what 1-2 USED to do for us. ETC, ETC, ETC.
I have utmost compassion for folks who need to order on line. who have had their tolerance to this drug increase to the point that the doctor prescribed dose of 8 pills/day isn't sufficient. To avoid feeling like they are in that nearly constant state of withdrawal, they turn to pills.com to satisfy their ever increasing need.
I know a bunch of people were up to 20-25 pills per day. I saw one woman on anotehr forum state that she was up to 75 pills/day. Work up a taper plan for that woman, huh? So, yes, i have nothing but the utmost compassion for people whose tolerances have shot up.
I havae shared this befoe, but it's been a while so I'll say it again.
There are really only three paths for every tramadol user to take.
1. remain at the same dose and experience withdrawal symptoms constantly. (trust me, this *****).
2. increase your dosage to accomodate our ever increasing tolerance and drug need, or
Good post, Fred. I think what makes trams so addictive is that you don't go back to a 'baseline normal' after the most potent effects of the drug wear off. There's something that lingers, a fog or heaviness that betrays the initial energetic pulse. You almost feel listless and lethargic, so you reach for the bottle again. Also, there may be a lucky few of us that cannot tolerate much tram because of the serotonin effects.
So... I've reached 96 hours, well in 10 minutes or so that is. I slept last night without using anything for restless legs, just used the melatonin supplement I've been using. I slept pretty well despite the waking up a few times every two hours or so and got a total of about 7 hours. Yesterday was a bit stressful at work and stuff, and I was feeling a little more anxious than usual. Today though, I woke up and besides the morning grogginess I actually feel okay about most things. Still no cravings for the tramadol!!! I am looking back on things and just shaking my head... What an absolute waste of money and worrying. I spent so much time figuring out how to hide the problem, that I couldn't even see for myself how far it had branched out and spread its disease into every other part of my life. I know I still have a while to go, and I also realize my other problems definitely haven't gone away. The issues with rent, cell phone, etc, are still here and very real, but I can almost breathe a sigh of relief that the extra burden I carried for so long is gone. There are so many things I will not EVER miss about being dependent on those pills... I will never worry about hiding a bottle in a suitcase, counting the few pills I have left and wondering if they are enough to feel just 'ok' during my normal day, and I will never miss deceiving those around me that I love the most because of something so ridiculous. No one should have to live that way, and I simply refuse to do it again! Thank you guys so much for the kind words of encouragement! As I said in a post above, you all really took so much of the anxiety involved with tapering and withdrawal away before I actually had to experience it all!
Hi chess, Fred, pharma, Bode, Jen, FMN mandy and Pat!!!
read every one of your posts with anticipation and enjoyment. thanks for the time and energy to post. it means a lot!!
welcome Finally, and allgood ---this is a place of healing and grace.
grateful dad- keep posting and reading...you can do a 'search' on weaning here and glean some excellent strategies. Read Bodes messages, too, she had a very successful wean with subuxone. We are here for you!!
I am 1 month clean today. I was 1 month clean then had a 5 day relapse. I got some extra help as the anxiety and depression after the C/T 5 days of holy heck were overwhelming for me...now that I got the help I feel like things are REALLY going well. Thanks everyone for...well...everything. I am so grateful.
stay strong and know that you are loved!!!!!
Congratulations to all of my friends here on their days away from the trams...I am so excited and happy for all of you..i know it's up and down.. and thank you from my heart for contining to post..i get so much inspiration from everyone's stories and suggestiions. saw my therpist last night..i think that we are a fit..going to try some hypnosis...she's also a critical care nurse..masters in psych..and certified hypnotherapist.. she spent 2 hours with me..and is on board with my tram withdrawal..that will be the main focus of our work..talking about accessing our higher self thru the subconscious/unconscious..really all very positive and i left there feeling hopeful...yesterday i had no desire for more trams...actually less...the AD is kicking in i believe...im not going to delude myself into thinking that this will be easy..i know it wont..hasnt been..but today i am hopeful.
Bless you all...this forum is the reason I've started on my healing journey...
Pat- I am happy for you that you feel good about this therapist. I am glad you will have her presence while you traverse the rest of your wean---to clean. Good for you!!
I am particularly thinking, today about Fred's statement that Tram's are harder to w/d from than heroin. I've read that sentiment on this forum, before, too. When I think about that, I realize what a big deal this is. How aggravating to me it is prescribed so freely. Just like a heroin addict, I spent a significant time while using in low to higher levels of w/d almost daily. The weird thing, too--is that Tram INCREASED pain for me. I'd get 6 hours, or so of relief but my receptors were on fire at various points in the day. Sometimes no rhyme or reason to this pain, either. Very strange. I did not realize this until about day 10 off Trams when I noticed my pain receptors calming down. I was using ibuprophen along with the Tram. now I use 1/2 the ibuprophen and a few tylenol everyday and enjoy much more pain relief than I did on heavy Ibupro and Tram, go figure.
How can that be?
I am glad it is over
I haven't had a craving for several days, now---whew!
I hope everyone out there is enjoying a wonderful eve
take care and Know
that You are Loved
Ok, so here I am again. I am so ashamed of myself. My MO seems to be that I take tram for a few days, go thru the withdrawal, can't stand it any longer and have to go thru it again. I have been taking 15 a day until Friday, when I took only about 10 and my last dose was at 130 p.m.. I took 2 tabs late yesterday afternoon to try and sleep, because my WORST night is usually the first night when I have restless arms so bad I just about jump out of my skin. Can you guys help me? I don't know if I am counting from Friday or yesterday and don't know how much it set me back? Also, since, each week, I have 3 or so days of time off of them, how bad will this be? I am so embarrassed and really don't want to do this ever again! I usually take them for 5 days at a time and then go thru WD.....so crazy! I know! I just feel awful that I have done this again. Please tell me what to do and how much I hurt myself taking the two yesterday??
Day 13 without Trams. Although I realize many of you cannot taper due to severe addiction problems, I just wanted to alleviate some fear that may arise from reading the most dire posts. I tapered for a month. My withdrawals were uncomfortable, but hardly comparable to a heroin withdrawal I'm sure. I took Trams for around 10 years daily. I do not mean to suggest that some of you are not suffering enormously, especially trying to cold turkey from very high doses -that must be unbelievable. But if you are a steady user in the 50mg-400mg range you may have an easier time than you expect. Fun? no. Tolerable-yes.
I only offer up this observation because the fear of WD's kept me from tapering for many months after I discovered this forum. I experienced some of the problems I had read about (once I began my taper), but not all of them. I never stopped going to work, in fact the distraction was helpful. Evenings were the worst, but I only experienced a couple of really sleepless nights.
I know I may be in the minority, but there are a few of us who have tapered successfully without suffering too much. It was certainly not a fun experience, bad enough that I will never take Trams again. I felt quite depressed at times but the taper helped me avoid the most severe symptoms. I never got up to the high doses that some of you are dealing with, and I'm sure that was a huge factor in my success but I did use it very steadily for over a decade.
Again, I offer this only to folks that are in a similar situation to mine. I would not presume to understand the ramifications or experiences of the folks that are using 15-20 Trams per day, and my sympathies go out to them. I thank God I never got up to that level but I can easily understand how it could happen.
I am feeling pretty good. My wife is proud of me, and I am relieved to be free of the guilt that dogged me for many years. I hope I NEVER have to sneak around the corner while shopping to pop another pill, or hide emergency pills in various spots around the house and my car. I had so many little stashes it took me a few days to find them all when I performed my final "toss-out". This last year I was getting dizziness and "brain-zaps". It was crazy. I longed for the day I would be free of this drug and now it's here. Yay!
Hello all....i'm new here. My first post......Been reading all the posts here...THX so much 4 telling it like it is. I've been abusing pain pills and now i'm addicted physically and mentally. I use Trams,Hydros and Tylenol 3's. I am weaning off because I tried to go CT and it was agony!! I couldn't even stand up....I layed on the bathroom floor to be close to the toilet....you know why....then I chewed 3 pills....20 minutes later 2 more then I felt back to normal, all W/D symptoms gone. Then I went back to 10 a day. I'm sure this is a familiar story huh? I was taking 8-10 pills a day (a combination of Trams,Hydro's and Tylenol 3's) then I went to 6 a day (stomach cramps...on the toilet!) and sleep trouble, some aches and strong Cravings. It has physically been tolerable...not comfortable..the cravings are the Worst! After a week I went to 4 a day for a week and now i've been on 2 a day yesterday and today. I only have Trams and Hydro's now and I don't know how to taper these. I dont' know whether to take 2 trams one day and 2 hydros the next or 1 of each......now i'm having more W/D's and it feels like my skins on fire....all my nerve endings are raw. I'm scared of the jump off.....should I go from 2 to zero or do 1 a day for a week...hmmm. Any words of wisdom from previous experience?
One more thing......I keep reading about Restless Leg Syndrome....what is that? Involutary muscle movements and pain in the legs? My feet and legs feel like they're on FIRE!! Could this be a part of RLS? Or has anyone else ever had this "Fire Legs and Feet" while withdrawing?
Hi BigDreamz. WD symptoms vary wildly, I'm so sorry you are going through it. Suffice to say whatever your symptoms are they are most likely related to the WD, and will eventually go away. In my experience the longer you taper the better, as long as you're consistent. Take two pills for several days until it feels comfortable or at least tolerable, then it's time to taper to one. In my case I actually took 1/2 pill for a few days, and then stopped. The trick is to let your body adjust to a lower dose without depriving it completely. When I was down to 1/2 pill I would wait till the evening so my sleep was less affected. When I finally did my last pill it was pretty uneventful physically, but mentally I was depressed for several days. After about a week I started to feel more up. Many people here including myself recommend talking to your doctor and getting an anti-depressant like Prozac or similar. It may help to treat the underlying issues that got you hooked on Trams in the first place. You don't have to stay on them forever, but it will possibly smooth out the transition.
Pat-so happy you found a therapist that you like. Please keep us posted on your experiences. I found that having a doctor help me through this last stint of detox was unbelievably helpful. In addition to posting and reading here of course!
4-leaf-you are doing beautifully. Very positive sounding. I love that you are doing so well. You are such a positive influence on all of us! 1 month clean? Thats amazing!!
Everyone else-I am reading all your posts. I know some are really realy struggling and not sure how to go about quitting, etc. I have done CT and a slow taper. For me, it depended on where I was mentally. This time, I could not quit without some help. So I quit T's and got on another med that I tapered very slowly. For me that did work in a less painful way. Though, that does drag it out and poses a risk of becoming hooked on something else. But I knew that I declared war(as Fred mentions in his posts) and was determined to be truly FREE which is why it worked for me.
The first time(s) I quit I did do CT and it was absolute agony and H-E-double hockey sticks. BUT, it did get better, slowly but surely and I was done. What I didn't know then was, I hadn't truly declared that 'WAR' and I went back to the evil T's 6 months later.
This time I have truly declared war in that fight. My battle will be in staying clean. After quitting in the past, I must have thought I was done fighting once I felt better. Now, I know from experience. The fight will continue forever. This time, I am READY! Sometimes, experience is a good thing.
I just wanted to say that I don't think for most people the withdrawal is comparable to heroin. I didn't find it that painful, nor do I crave tramadol the way people crave heroin. I know it varies a lot, but I did a really fast taper and was okay. I was fatigued, but worked. I just don't want people to read things like that and not stop. It was worse when I was tapering. Once I stopped, it was over in a few days. Except the depression, which hit 7-10 days later.
Thx Wummick! I took your advice and I have an appointment with my Doctor tomorrow to talk about antidepressant medicine. I took 2 Trams yesterday. 1 in the morning and 1 more about 5pm. I slept well lastnite and woke up w/o W/D. I'm starting to feel a little W/d now that i've been up for 3 hours. (Burning skin,the runs,a few aches in my muscles but not too bad at all) I will take the taper advice i've read here and take 2 a day for 3 days and then 1 for 3 days then 1/2 for 3 days then FREEDOM! Taper has sure worked for me, the W/D's have been tolerable.....Thank God! For me Cold Turkey was too horrible and I felt DEFEATED when I gave in and took pills to stop the torture of W/D's! I know God has intervened in my life once again and He gave me the desire to wanna get off these pills and He gives me the strength everyday, day by day to get clean. I know God led me to this group for all your Wisdom and Strength and Experience! It was here that I learned that I could taper and I read some great taper plans here. I'm Grateful......the Sun is on the Horizon for me. I have HOPE again because of all of you!
hi everyone, im so pleased i found this help topic. well i dont really know where to start, im a married mum of 4 children and i was prescribed tramadol 8 years ago for an illness. I had an operation a couple of years ago and my doctor decided to stop prescribing me the tramadol as she said i didnt need them anymore, yeh right!! i was totally addicted and believe me the hardest thing was facing up to the fact that i was a tramadol addict. I had to admit to my doctor that i needed the tramadol to feel "normal" and she agreed to taper me off them, that didnt work as i couldnt handle the withdrawls and i soon found a seller online to sell me tramadol. I gave up going to the doctors for help, she couldnt understand why i was getting bad withdrawls etc, i got the feeling that she didnt really have a clue what i was talking about. I have tried to go cold turkey several times, i gear myself up for it then can only manage 4 days and im back on the tramadol, i have never felt withdrawls like it in my life. Sweating, insomnia, crazy restless legs, running to the toilet, feeling like you just want to curl up in a ball and die, no energy, anxiety.,,,,,,etc. the list goes on n on. I now take tramadol not for a high like some users but just to make me feel normal and get on with my daily things, i desperately want to give up and stop this horrible drug but i just cant hack the withdrawls, if only there was something i could take when going cold turkey to stop me having such bad withdrawls but my doctor is hopeless and now that im buying the tramadol online she is under the impression that im off them altogether now so i cant go to her for help. I hate myself for being so dependent on tramadol and want to stop not only for my own health but for the sake of my kids as well. I really would appreciate any advice as to how i can kick this habit and get my life back again. Can i buy anything over the counter at a chemist that would help with withdrawl? my husband has no idea that i am buying tramadol online which i might add is very very expensive and im hiding money and i hate lying to him i really desperately need some help and people i can talk to,
thanks for reading this
Hi Bev1974. If you can just hang on a few more hours or so, some very helpful people will log on and share some wonderful advice to help you.
It sounds like you have conquered step #1 and that is to admit that you are out of contro with Tramadol!! Congratulations. It sounds like you tapered too quickly if you were feeling so ill during the process. I tapered semi-quickly, I was uncomfortable, but not miserable and I could work and mantain my family. My husband didn't and still doesnt know my secret so I understand your guilt about lying to yours.
Be patient - help will arrive soon and help launch you into your transition of a tram-free life!!
Hi Bev- I'm sorry for what you're going through. We've all been there. There are some otc things that help. Like immodium. Do you take anything for depression? That is where many of us find we need help afterwards. There are both otc things for that and prescription. Sleep is probably one of the biggest issues. I've been taking Calms Forte, which helps me, but I'm also on klonopin (trying to taper off that).
If you can be honest with your husband or a doctor or psychiatrist, it will help you immensely. Addiction is not something most of us choose.
Bev, how many trams do you take a day or feel you need to take? First, though, do not blame yourself; it was the doctor's ignorance that got you hooked; many seemingly are misinformed about how addictive they are. Tramadol addiction can sneak up on you before you even realize you're addicted.
Hello Bev...Welcome! Search this site for Tramadol discussions and then within that topic search tapering and withdrawal, that's what I did and I got some GREAT info on how to taper (how many pills I should reduce and how many days to stay on that reduced dose before I reduce again) I've been tapering from about 10 a day(over a few weeks time) to 2 a day right now and my withdrawals have been minimal and tolerable. I tried Cold Turkey at first too....AGONY right?! I feel tapering is the way to go because people here say it isn't safe to stop Tramadol abruptly. You should post how many Trams a day you take and how(swallow,chew,snort...ect)the strength and how long you've been taking it. I think I read 8 years. There is hope........Keep on posting!!!
Hi Everyone...Just checking in to send you all lots of hugs and love...and congrats on fact that you are all here..getting & giving help...not been doing great..but i need to check in here..because everytime i do..someone reaches out...and that is the lift that i need... it's a process this withdrawal business... 2 steps fwd..1 step back, etc. just the depression for me primarily..just waiting for the AD to kick in. Fmn, Jenny,Susan,Bode,Chess,4-Leef..Pharma, Grandmagirl ...thank you all so much for the gifts you bring to this forum..For those struggling..please stay with us out here..check in. and you will get the help and encouragement that you need to wage this battle.
Bev, I believe that I could have uttered every word you have stated above. You gotta love the doctors who decide to wean you off this addictive drug, yet they probably lack all but the most cursory knowledge of TRAMADOL, the dependancy one developes to this drug, or the withdrawal involved with one who is taking it.
Like others asked above, I am wondering how many you were taking per day. Nobody here is being nosey, it;'s just that it helps other to help you better if we know your experience. You will find someone here who has been about every-tram-where in the world. I am also curious to learn whether you have ever tried to taper. Finally, if you were on, say 8 pills/day, were you able to stay on your prescribed dose evenly, or did your daily dose somewhat depend on how many pills you had on hand?
Keep coming back OK? You will find people here somewhere on the continuem of wellness where tram is concerned. Your experience can be validated. You are not crazy. You can overcome this power drug.
Frank- welcome- wonderful post! I used (and still use) clonidine for sleep...it is a blood pressure pill that is used in opiate withdrawal and works VERY well for the symptoms of anxiety and insomnia. My MD happily prescribed it and is keeping my Rx open for a while. You might find it helpful-- although a word of caution...I do not know your medical history so your MD might have some considerations there. You have done a nice job getting through the difficult early w/d. feels good to be free, doesn't it?
Bev-- welcome to this place of healing. You have already received much feedback here. We are glad you found us. Everyone has their own experience here-- but we can relate to your fears and concerns about the wicked w/d. If you can taper that is MUCH less agonizing than a cold turkey w/d. Another option is to approach an MD in your area about suboxone as a taper drug for tramadol w/d. you can goggle suboxone doctors in your area. THESE MD's are experts in the field of opiate w/d practice (not like your MD that prescribed your trams to get started) I have worked with many heroin addicts and when they use suboxone they do very very well. the SUB is tapered with the MD's continued supervision. Another option is to plan a taper of tramadol using formula's shared here on this post. A few have asked how much you are on and when you reveal this you might just get some more specific recommendations. There is not one way to do this and it is important to keep posting and reading here....I read for many hours those first few days in w/d. There is also much discussion about the anxiety and depression that seems to 'settle in' about 7-10 days after Tram is out of the system. Again experience is individual on this but I struggled with this so much that I relapsed for 5 days...then back clean again (there was w/d after 5 days, mind you)
yuck...what a horrible drug... I got on some medication for mood regulation and it is helping tremendously. Don't be mean to yourself, please. You have done a fabulous job sharing, very insightful and right on target... as sandia said ...we have to accomplish coming to terms with the truth about our addiction before we can wage the battle of both withdrawal and recovery. We are here for you!!!
Bev- i'm a mother of four and loved tramadol. I have been clean since December. To be honest I was taking about 15 a day. I was getting prescriptions from my doctor plus buying them online. I had been taking them for about two years. I had a seizure the first week of December and it scared the crap out of me. I had the seizure because I took about 20 trams that day. When I got home from the hospital after my seizure I climed into bed with my laptop and looked up anything about tramadol. This is one of the sites I got. This is the site that gave me hope and my life back. After reading for a couple of weeks and getting some good advice I knew I could do it. Yes it was hard that first weekend. I had bad w/d and it sucked. However, each bad moment was one step to the other side. No matter what, it's going to be uncomfortable. But when you get to the other side it's the greatest feeling in the world. After 5 days of w/d, depression started surrounding me and thats when I immediately started exercising. I've been doing some type of exercising everyday and that has been keeping the depression away. Good luck and I will be praying for you.
I know there are some who are scared and worried about quitting and what the w/d's will be like. I have done it 4 times. Twice CT, once tapering and once using another drug to get off of Tramadol. Each has its positives and negatives. CT is awful, but will be over faster. Tapering is a bit gentler(still painful though), but it is dragging the whole thing out and takes incredible self control. Using another medication was helpful for me, but some people can get hooked on that other med if their not careful and then you still need to taper off of that med. Anyway you choose, it will be a challenge. But you CAN do it. You can!
Everyone has their own experiences getting off Tramadol. For some, its one week worth of feeling uncomfortable and gets better from there. For me it has been agony quitting this drug, but even still, it DID get better. It just took me longer than I hoped and maybe I'm just more sensitive! So, just know that everyone is a bit different and has taken different amounts for different lengths of time.
The bottem line is, that once you deicide how you will quit, know that you will have our support. We will be here. No matter what. This is one of the most courageous things anyone can do. Know that you are in good company and are supported and loved.
This place is full of beautiful people. This place helped to save me. I love you guys.
For those of you trying to quit smoking, I found something that might help: Mulungu bark tea.
Health Benefits of Mulungu
"Although the mulungu herb is not very well known or widely used in North America, there have been many clinical studies and much research undertaken that scientifically supports claims of its healing properties. Mulungu is found to be a natural tranquilizer comparable to the chemically based sedative diazepam. It calms nerves, eases anxiety, stabilizes the central nervous system, lowers blood pressure and steadies the heart’s rhythm by sedating overactive neurotransmitters. Mulungu also effectively kills pain, kills bacteria and has strong antioxidant capabilities. Furthermore Mulungu, unlike kava-kava (which is an alternative plant based medicine found to actually cause liver damage) is not harmful to the liver and in fact has proven to tone, balance and strengthen that organ. Because of this, mulungu is now being used to treat hepatitis.
In both Brazil and Peru medical professional are using Mulungu successfully as a treatment for epilepsy. One of the latest studies indicates that it may be used for nicotine addiction because it has the properties to block nicotine receptors. Mulungu has also shown helpful in stimulating milk flow in lactating females."
--Don't know about mulungu helping with Trams, but for that you might want to try kratom (another herb) to help get you through the worst days. But as bode points out, we don't want to substitute one addiction for another.
Also, since trams have antidepressant properties, St. Johns Wart might be a viable substitute for the post tram W/D blues (depression).
hi everyone, thankyou so much for all of your replies and for taking the time to read my post. Im so glad that i am not alone and that you all understand how i am feeling, i have no one i can talk to about this, i cant tell my husband, he wouldnt understand and would be angry with me for buying tablets from the internet, i cant go back to my doctor as she thinks im nuts lol and to be honest doctors dont seem to be very clued up on tramadol addiction. I am currently taking between 7 and 9 50mg pills per day, and believe me that is just to feel normal, i know if i had more i would prob take more but i can only afford so many a week, when i was getting prescriptions i was taking around 15 per day, BAD i know but this drug just takes a hold of you and before i knew it i was addicted, i hate the thoughts that i am doing this to myself and i feel so guilty when i look at my beautiful children, the hardest thing i find with cold turkey is lack of energy, tramadol makes me feel like ive got some get up and go and get on n do things but without it i feel so tired and just YUK!! ive tried immodium and over the counter sleeping remedies but i cant sleep when i stop tramadol, my legs just drive me crazy. I want to stop this i really do but im so scared, and ive tried to taper so many times but end up taking more when i feel yuk! thankyou to everyone
Petunia..awesome..clean since December..CONGRATULATIONS!! i appreciate your advice about the exercise..to help with the depression...what a gift you give yourself..and your family..thank you for posting.
Bev: My experience is like the others said above..i dont think im being overly dramatic when i say that this forum is saving my life as well. It was where I Started...All of these amazing folks out here ..gave me the courage to move forward. One thing is..if you can find anyone..a friend..maybe seek out a psychotherapist...someone you can talk to in person..about this. I've told 2 friends who've been amazingly supportive and didnt leave. We shame ourselves and beat ourselves up..which only keeps us down and at risk for going back into the pills to numb the shame and guilt. It does take a tremendous amount of courage to do what you are doing..talking about it..admitting that you need some help...please give yourself some credit..there is so much wisdom out here..so much care...keep coming back and posting...I am relatively new here.. but i can tell you..you are so safe here and not judged... i wish you strength and courage and all that you need to wage this battle..
we are here for you..
thank you for posting..
Ok, so I'm still doing this! YAAY....but the nighttime thing is unbearable. I slept last night in 3, 45 minute increments. That was it! I'm on day 3 or 4 I think. It helps me a lot to read the posts here. Maybe that will give me the strength this time around. Something has to! I feel so restless at night, partly because I am so tired during the day that I can barely do anything, and that keeps me from being tired enough at night to sleep. PLUS, withdrawal seems to keep everyone awake for a few days. I think that even a few hours of sleep would make me feel better. I am emotionally exhausted, not to mention physically. Eventhough I have experience with this from before, it seems different each time. Kind of like it is different for each person. I want to feel better SO badly that I would do just about anything to make it go away, and the answer I usually come up with is to go back on the tramadol. That thought almost makes me gag right now!
I am taking sublingual B12, but I'm not exactly sure how much a day I can safely take. Does anyone know? Or how about something else for some energy that doesn't require prescription? I think I would have a little more energy if I could just sleep! Don't know how to make that happen either! I have soaked in a bath with epsom salt before bed and taken some vitamin-type things to help with restless legs, but nothing seems to help. Any advice there?
Thanks to everyone here who posts. You make it more bearable to go through this. I'm gonna make it this time!!!!!!!
"Any form of measuring yourself by the unkind action of another towards you is like looking into a badly fractured mirror... and then blaming yourself for the shattered image you see therein"
Hello everyone!! This is my first day on 1 a day. I'm feeling pretty well. I went to a 12 step meeting yesterday to start to learn about how I can stay off pills for good. I felt really comforted just being there.....a lot of great advice. They told me to eat sweet, sugary things like fruit and suck on hard candy or anything sweet just like they suggest for Alcohol and Heroin cravings. It has something to do with the way sugar is metabolized in our bodies....if i remember correctly. They also told me to PRAY, PRAY, PRAY and ask God to remove the obsession and compulsion to take the pills and to help me get off the Trams completely. They all told me the cravings will go away and from reading other people's posts here, they do go away! I'm gonna keep going to NA because I have admitted to myself that I am an addict and I need a program of recovery to stay off pills. I speak only for myself.....some people can stay away with their own willpower but not me!
BigDreamz, the cravings DO go away! Those of us who have made it a decent way into this crazy experience can promise you, they go away. Look forward to a day, in the not-too-distant future, when you will experience ZERO cravings. That is a really good feeling.
Take heart...we all have been where you are (well, sort of!), and we are here for you 1000%. No matter what your experience is, you can share it here. No fear, no shame, no judgment.
Yeah, willpower wasn't enough for me either! I tried. Lots of times. Didn't work. My broken brain overpowered any willpower I may have had, and the seductive tram voice that whispered, "just take this pill and you'll be NORMAL!" always turned me to jello. I was an addict. I am an addict. But I'm no longer a prisoner to that little white devil pill.
However. I am struggling, friends. If you pray, please pray for me. The depression is terrible. Not just terrible, I mean *really* terrible. I am holding out hope that it will improve. There has to be some way to deal with this, but I am truly at a loss as to what that might be. I've been down the AD road too many times to count. I fear that may have made it worse. Add fear to the depression, and you get the picture. It's not pretty. Today is the worst day in a LONG time for me, and I have come here for hope. Because all of you give me hope.
BTW, my depression existed long before my tramadol addiction. It's not the result of withdrawal, so don't let this scare if you if you are new to the board.
It is really shoving my face into the concrete. Hard.
I'm 17 weeks pregnant and have been taking tramadol for 61/2 months.It started out legitimately for pain.The doctor never told me they were addictive and now I'm having a REALLY hard time stopping even though I know I HAVE to or I'm going to hurt my baby if I haven't already and of course that's the LAST thing I want to do.I'm trying to taper off but I don't know how far to go
Thx forget me not!!! Knowing that the CRAVINGS will go away sure gives me Hope and renewed strength! Also I had major depression most of my life starting at the age of 14 and have been on MANY anti-depressants. The only one that worked for me was Wellbutrin. Have you tried that? I just got back on them yesterday and I already feel a little of that increasing sense of well being AND an energy boost because thats how it is.(I'm sure not all people feel All the other AD's made me extremely tired and that fatigue of the body and mind kept me going back to Trams and many other pain pills and other drugs. I am praying for you and believing that God will lift you out of that deep, dark depression. Soon!
4leefclover....thank you for the kind words and the suggestions!!
Just an update for folks on what I am experiencing on day 27 without Tramadol. All of the physical withdrawl (other than a screwy sleep pattern) have mostly gone. My moods are still a bit up and down, but more up these days. I found the "Restfull Legs" medication at a local pharmacy, and they work like a charm. I take them before bed, and I keep them near if I get up in the middle of the night. They really calm that screetchy feeling you get, like you just cant sit still. My wife really appreciates that....much less tossing around. I stopped the Ambien last week....(after three days).....last night I almost slept 8 hours (albeit broken sleep). I actually felt rested.
Still taking Fish Oil, Ginko, 5-HTP, and B12
Feels like things are getting better slowly but surely........I hope everyone here is well and fighting the good fight! It can be done.......
PS: Tramahater .....Try the Hylands "Restfull Legs" its about 8 bucks at pharmacies or health food stores....Sublinguial tablets. They have a website also..............
Hi all! Day 15. Fairly stable at this point-but I don't want to get cocky. I had a slightly down day last week, but my sleep is surprisingly good. Again, the exercise seems to help. I'm just about to hop on that damn stairmaster machine. Ugh. Still, shouldn't complain-it's been a lifesaver.
I'm not craving Trams at all. I do miss the lift they would give me in the afternoon, but a Starbucks double-shot seems to do the trick instead. I've stopped all sleep aids at this point as well. Not even ibuprofen, which was ruining my stomach after taking for many years in a row. My goal is to train myself to sleep naturally again, and so far it's going pretty good.
It's so cool to hear about the progress many of you have made just since I started posting and tapered to zero. Wow! You are proof to those who are desperate and/or afraid to quit or taper that it can be done! It's almost like a virtual circle of friends holding hands to support those that are in need. "we did it-so can you!".
Life IS better without the Trams. I DO feel better. So will you!
We must catch those negative thoughts about ourselves in action in order to challenge and dis-identify with them. Wayne Dyer once pointed out that negative emotions often lead us into a vicious circle where they intensify as we become more demoralized. Demoralization leads to a feeling of futility that keeps us from acting in ways that would break the spell. We feel a kind a heaviness where even the simplest tasks are immensely difficult. What to do? Force yourself to proceed, even if it feels like you're moving through a thick gel, and watch the spell begin to break!
Fmn...so many prayers..so many hugs..sending your way...i truly identify as i was plagued with depression prior to the trams..
Ken..thanks for the link on Guy...a kind of heaviness is an understatement for me...i feel paralyzed sometimes.like i cannot move..and the tramafog..has me picking up a piece of paper on my desk and putting it back down.. my work is suffering terribly..but i will move thru it..because by not doing that..the paralysis cycle continues..the depression gets worse..im trying an ad..doesnt feel like it's kicked in yet..but i realize it takes time.. i wont give up..or give in...Thanks for all the support eveyone..Fmn..please hang on honey...we are here for you.
FMN- Hi Honey! Things sound pretty tough. I am so sorry to hear you are struggling. What is getting in your way, Sweetness?
Is this heaviness connected to something? I used to have an inferno of self-hatred burning in my solarplexes. It burned for years and I fueled it with shame and guilt (those are highly flammable items) I had to do the work of honest self appraisal with someone who had also done that work. I also did therapy with a very spiritual person. I began looking at the 'parts' in me. I would close my eyes (her along with me) grounding into the earth energy and bringing down the Light from above my head--
then I waited.....and these visions happened where the parts of me I had neglected, dismissed and abandoned, really.... began showing themselves......she told me to thank them, every time....the first thing I heard going inside was a megaphone at my ears saying "you are a liar and a phoney" whew!!....there was a baby crawling out of a pit of tar..and I am convinced the tar was shame..I took that baby on my lap and reassured her I would NEVER let her go....my addict was....well.. maybe I'll tell it later.....but I was able to 'integrate' all these parts of me and learn to appreciate them....and my lifelong depression lifted.... It took a lot of courage...but I could not go on any longer in that same cycle I had going for so long.....
does this help you? I don't know how to help....
I certainly can relate and hope it lifts, soon
to everyone out there....NICE WORK on addressing this difficult withdrawal
enjoy the peace and freedom!!
no more bondage!!
all is well
You are Loved
Right 4-leaf, a big part of it comes from a negative self-image. Why are we so hard on ourselves? Because others told us--by words, expression, or manner--that we somehow weren't okay? We may have been forced to listen then, but why do we still listen now?
That brings us to the second part of it:
Thinking about what others are or might be thinking about us!
It's part of the 'negative imagination' that is born of comparison, unconscious comparison. We're terrified that we won't measure up!
That leads us to seek the approval of those who may be more 'damaged' than ourselves, which is ridiculous. Many do not consider that they can just as well use such 'shocks' to shake themselves awake, rather than push them deeper into darkness.
hey Chess - I ordered some mulungu tea today...on your suggestion...I am terribly addicted to nicotine gum (my blankey)
I think I am ready to let it go soon...thought the tea might help THANKS!!!! Your suggestions and words mean so much
from Guy to Herbs you are a great resource on this forum
great work Jason and Frank!
all is well
you are Loved!
Thanks 4-leaf. :-) You guys are great. It's so refreshing to find a place like here without pretense. Let me know how the mulungu tea works out or if you need to find a vendor. Better nicotine gum than cigarettes.
Still here! 5 days!!! Day 3 or 4 is when I give in usually, so WHOOHOO! Kicking butt and taking names! Still have arctic circle-insides but I think I'm going to live now! This one has been rough. Maybe I'll remember it this time when the cravings hit....and they WILL!
hey everyone -
it's been awhile since i've posted here...things have been kinda topsy turvey here with my schedule and work. Right now, while i'm tapering/withdrawing, i'm not sure if working so much is a blessing or a curse....the former because it takes my minds off things and keeps me occupied, but a curse because my performance is severely lacking and i dont have the opportunity to take a few days off and just cold turkey like i've been so tempted to do here recently. Someone came in the pharmacy tonight to pick up an rx and told me their name and it took me 5 minutes just to figure out what they said....it was beyond humiliating. i picked up every RX but the one with their name on it, the fog is that bad.
Today has been by far my worst day...I'm down to 3 tablets, or 150 mgs. I've been getting the cold sweats, as well as a bit of restless legs at night. I've been taking Kava, 5 htp and a phenergan at night to keep me asleep through it all, and thats been working out pretty well...we'll see what happens tonight, though.
My muscles ache - ACHE. As do my bones. One minute, my body is on fire, and the next I'm freezing. I'm keeping the sinus symptoms (flu like, really) to a minimum with some regular sudafed as needed, and am taking 200 mg's caffeine and l tyrosine in the morning just so I can make it out of bed. b12 sublinguals and b6 lozenges (actually made for morning sickness) have been my saving grace (YES they do make a difference!!!!)
I kept a half pill of tramadol in pocket all day today at work, like a stupid security blanket - just in case. But not my whole pill bottle, which is the first for me. It made me feel better knowing it was there (unlike that panic you get when you run out and go OH MY GOD what will I do I have to get some have to have to!), but when I got home tonight and realized it was still there...
I was so proud of myself. I had this joyous moment where my heart danced...and the amazing thing is...
I felt it. For the first time, i actually felt something. It was wonderful. I may not have declared full out war yet against this monster, but i'm defeating him...slowly but surely.
Tomorrow I do another 3, then I am down to 2. I am doing a very quick taper this time, because despite my hospitalization, I still want to make my goal of being free by easter. Yes, it means worst withdrawals after that 400mg IV daily...but I WILL DO IT.
Chess, thank you so much for those guy finley quotes. He's been a lifesaver to me, as have all of you.
Keep it up guys - we can do it together!!!
ok, i figured out how to get to the latest thread--sorry, i'm a bit...compromised, like most others here :/ here is my "first" post (i'd posted it elsewhere, on closed threads, accidentally):
hello, all. echoing many others, i've come across this site/journal in quiet desperation; i am posting this quick post to determine whether i'm posting in the correct area. i'm on about 400mg tramadol/day for five years--the maximum daily dosage--and am very depressed, lethargic, and just...in a severe malaise. i've tapered to this amount over a month. i know what i am in for after reading posts here--and from mini-withdrawals i've experienced over the years. the worst part, for me, is the stomach pain, cramping, and stomach-"nervousness." it's as if the tramadol has masked some kind of severe peptic ulcer, though i realize it's most certainly just a part of the withdrawal hell. i'll close here, in case i'm posting on an old thread. if i'm in the right place, will someone kindly let me know? the "good" news is that i am unemployed, so i have *time* to do this without the incredible burden of having to function at work, which i can't imagine doing. i am waiting for my next unemployment cheque to pay for some rxs i have waiting (clonazepam, prozac, soma), which i've taken for many, many, many years (clonazepam prn, prozac 40mg/day, though i became so lax about taking it when on tramadol, that i'd all but stopped it after being on it for 14 years).
hate to be a party pooper, the way I got off of opiates was by checking myself into a detox facility in a local hospital.Followed up by 12 months in a treatment center followed up with daily maintenance in a 12 step fellowship going on 7 years now free from active addiction, When the pain gets great enough there are hundreds of thousands of people all around the world who embarked on the journey of recovery and freed themselves from active addiction..... God Bless
jclean, You are NOT a party pooper. Congratulations on getting and staying clean man! Keep coming back to share your experience strength and hope, k?
Evanrude, welcome. You made it to the active thread, which by most accounts is the longest running active forum dedicated to tramadol addiction and recovery.
In a way, I would have to agree with you, "it is a good thing that you are unemployed", for the limited reason that it is a whole lot easier to withdraw from tramadol when you don't need to get up and work all day. For me, it was the restless legs and insomnia that kicked my butt.
The good news is that acute withdrawal doesn't last forever. There is an end to this. Stay in teh moment and keep posting to say how you are doing.
FMN, I wish I could wave a magic wand to lift your anxiety and depression. Maybe I missed it, but are you under a doctor's care? (I kinda hope so.). When I have dark days/times, sometimes what gets me through is the knoweldge that tomorrow just possibly be brighter than today. Not all surprises are bad.
Good things will surely come to a person like you, who has a heart of seeming gold.
Everyone else, I am not ignoring you all. I am just sleepy and need to hit the hay.
Evan- You are definitely in the right place and you are well positioned to come off the tramadol. I took a touch more klonopin at night to help me sleep when I was withdrawing. I was taking 1.5mg at night at the time. I went up to 2mg, but now I'm down to .75. My lowest dose in many years! Anyway, that and clonidine helped me sleep. I worked with a psychiatrist for this. At the time, I was on Pristiq, then Effexor to taper off. I'm now just taking 5mg of Prozac because I had a hard time with the Effexor withdrawal.
Anyway, I was taking about the same amount of tram as you and did a rapid taper and stopped at 150mg because the taper was a pain. After that, I was better in less than a week. Except the depression. But, I have 100+ days now and depression free (with my small prozac dose anyway!).
thanks, guys. you know, and this may sound strange, but i think everyone will understand, i'm getting "excited" about doing this; i'm actually looking forward to it. don't get me wrong though, i realize the abject hell i'm in for--i really do. but i always kind of expected to pay this kind of price for tram--dunno why.
when one could buy vicoprofen on the internet, i'd get 180 tabs and do them all in a month--purely recreationally--and stop, no taper, cold turkey, when they ran out. nothing. no withdrawal. and, as i've written, never even the slightest withdrawal from the 60mg/day (schedule II drug) methylphenidate i've been on for six or seven years! this is the first and only, i hope, time i'll have to deal with this kind of thing.
even smoking, which i still do, is child's play in terms of quitting, compared to what i'm in for with tramadol.
anyway, like so many, i'm very grateful to have come across this thread; the sheer isolation one can feel around this type of thing--to say nothing of the shame, or merely not knowing what to do/expect--probably prevents most people from even pretending to consider taking this plunge. i only regret that i i didn't do this in feb or jan, as i've been unemployed since then.
i'm so lucky to even feel able--be able--to do this; to do it under such ideal circumstances (i.e., NO responsibilities/work [except for walking my 11-year old westie, whose energy mine pales next to lately]); to have the "helping" drugs i'll have; to have all of you (prob. most important thing of all); and just to have the will to do it--and the realization that i'm truly psychologically and *physically* dependent on this drug.
someone was talking about the importance of saunas/steamrooms/baths. i know this will be important--as i'm already in the freezing extremity stage just after my meager taper to 400mg/day. however, my landlord was just bitching about my energy use (been so cold lately), and is raising my rent. so i don't want to spike my natural gas right now by taking lots of HOT baths. i'll look into getting a temporary gym membership. lol, everyone will think i'm a scientologist, taking magnesium and vitamins and hanging out in the sauna :)
finally, i have to sort of agree with the laments i've read around here about tapering (v.s. just doing it). i mean, i think titration is very important when one is on particularly high doses over a long period, but i feel as if--for me--tapering further (from my 7 or 8 50mg tabs/day to any fewer) is like wading into a frigid pool of water (as opposed to just diving in). you know? i mean, even at the 400mg/day i'm on now--AND having the luxury of taking a 20mg ritalin with a cup of good espresso whenever i want--it's all i can do to just take my bloody dog on a walk--and i love that little dog more than life! god, i sound so f***ing spoiled, pathetic, weak, self-indulgent, self-absorbed--and i am, i'm sure. but getting off of this drug, FWIW, is at least one thing i'm doing right. right? i do also look forward to seeing what life will be like without tramadol--i mean, after the horrible part (which i pray won't last a long, long time).
hoping my EDD check arrives today, so that i can pick up the remainder of my withdrawal project supplies. i was thinking of staple-gunning cotton batting to my walls and ceiling, but won't be able to afford that. but i'm sold on the b-complex, sublingual b-tabs, l-tyrosine (which i've used to augment the ostensible diminishing of dopamine levels when one is on an SSRI/SSNRI for a long time), and a mineral supplement
thanks again, everyone! will keep you posted--believe me i will! :)
Jenny ..Congrats on 100 days!!!! You go girl..that is so awesome.
Tramahater - 5 days...and you're still going...congratulations..
Fmn..thinking about you sister...praying that you are having better day. Please check in when you can and let us know how you are doing.
Amy...bless you as you continue your taper...sounds like you are staying strong..but I do relate to the fog..i know my bosses are wondering why im "mia"...and not producing...very stressful ..
Welcom to JClean & Evanrude..you wont believe the strength & support you will get from this forum.
Hey Bev..I've seen others make comments about the sneezing..I havent personally had the experience..but Im sure someone will address this for you. I hope you are doing ok...
4Leef..love your piece about the work you did to help get rid of the shame/negative....i think (i know!) the trams have blocked my ability to be spiritually connected. i used to meditate, pray ..do positive affirmations, yoga, etc...before my affair with tram began. as i encountered some personal tragedies in past few years..rather than tapping into my higher power.to help me get thru ..i've tapped into the trams and xanax. subsequently i fear i have a bit of grief work to do once off tramadol.
TWINSMOM: are you still with us?? someone inquired about your dose..only to help address your concerns..not to judge in any way shape or form...please stay with us..good information and help is here.
Bode girl..love u hope you are well!!
Ken..root canal...been there...they gave me tylenol with codeine..which took care of pain and i hated it thank God
Fred...ii so appreciate the wisdom, strength and experience you bring to this forum...thank you from my heart.
Grandma Girl...havent seen you lately..you were the first one to welcome me to this forum...i will not forget that or you..thank you..i hope you are doing ok.
Also, Pharma...havent seen you but trust all is well with you.
For everyone else out there reading..dont give up..please ...this is a place where no shame is allowed..period! We can't continue to beat ourselves up and manage to get off this drug..the self loathing will drive us back to using... post your story..ask for help.. we're all in this together.
Hey everyone! I'm still doing 1 a day for the 3rd day now. I don't think i'm gonna do the 1/2 a Tram for 3 days because my W/D's are very minimal (restless and achey and waking up out of my sleep) and taking 1 a day is starting to fuel the fire of craving. I've been going to 12 step meetings and praying for God to ignite the desire to be pill free again cuz it's fading! TWINSMOM I pray that you are doing ok....please post when you can.
TRAMAHATER way to go!! You inspire me! Are you still fighting the cravings? JG525 it's sooo encouraging to read you have 129 days. How long did it take to lose the cravings? The craving are almost too much for me right now.
Thanks FinallyFred.... The pain and suffering of the physical withdrawls were inhumane it literally took me a month before I actually slept. I was on 100mg of methadone for five years as well as just about anything that I can get my hands on favorite was opiates... and if it can fit in a syringe even better. Once the fog started to lift and I began resting at night and FEELING again I was coming to the realization that this was only the beginning of a life long process.The hardest thing for me to get my head around and accept was the whole "addiction is a disease concept" as bad as it got for me and let me tell you getting to that point took 23 years of doing different drugs and I include alcohol as a drug I still had trouble accepting that maybe just maybe the real problem was between my ears they told me that this was a disease of personalities,attitudes,and a general negative outlook on life rooted in fear,insecurity, and low self esteem and the main ingrediant are obsession and compulsion. Thats the way it was explained to me and once I started working steps I began to see things in myself that helped me to accept that I have this disease. Pain is necessary for recovery suffering is optional. God Bless, J
well, i think my quit date will be monday. i have everything i need, including the what i'm sure will be invaluable comfort that perusing this site's stories will provide. i'm excited, scared, "proud" in a way (that i'm finally realizing this and doing it--well, intending to anyway), and, well, basically am just looking forward to be free of this, my one addiction (other that smoking, which though hard to kick, has NO real withdrawal--it's all psychological (for me) and nostalgic "i want to be smoking with an espresso..." blah blah. nothing like tram. sigh. i can't believe this is my life sometimes.
evanrude- nice plan....keep posting! I read for hours in the first few days of withdrawal, and posted a lot too. all my shifting strategies in those first 5 days. I had quite a bit of trouble with the gastric thing and ended up in the ER- leaving with the recommendation to take omeprazole and zantac every day. that was Jan 3rd my 4th day in c/t withdrawal. I've taken them every day since. They helped my symptoms. Then the restless legs. I got a heating pad and took epsom salt baths....
there is more but some of the memory is fading except my overall assessment that it was a wicked ride...as far as cravings?
for me...the cravings are pretty much gone....but they lasted for weeks and I did have a 5 day relapse 34 days ago clean, now......(I had w/d symptoms after 5 days back on.....) but not nearly as bad
Jclean- you are so right about addiction. attitudes, outlook, negativity and OLD IDEAS...which do not serve me anymore
honesty is mentioned several times in the beginning paragraphs of How it Works
you are sounding quite insightful about yourself...and I find... that is The Work
Keep Going All
Jen- congrats, Hon!
Pat- hang in there
and I LOVE Amy's song
For venturing from the land of giving in and arriving at the shore of addressing this monster head on.
Jclean and Clover, you have some good streams of thought going.
Addiction IS a disease.
I pray that for some of you, you have only become dependant on the tramadol chemistry.
For you, you will push on through 5-6 days without the lovely RAT pill, never look back, and be done.
Withdrawal from this drug (or most drugs) is pretty similar regardless of why you started or whether you admit to being addicted, or just cop to being dependant on this drug. Tramadol took us each down much the same however.
And for all of us, the only freedom comes by not taking ANY of the drug moment after moment, hour after hour, day after day.
Cause I am fairly sure that nobody reading these words will EVER successfully come to a point of taking tramadol like a "gentle man" or "gentle woman".
It's not in this drug's nature to take only part of you. The drug will continue sinking it's hooks deeper and deeper in you until we become nothing more than a tram-a-bot. Tolerance means that over time, it will require more and more of the drug to make us feel just as NOT unwell as we were the day before. I don't believe moderation is a quality that comes to mind when I consider tramadol use. At least it wasn't that way for me.
We can ease into this withdrawal by a righteous taper. If that eases anyone's withdrawal, God bless you. I support and will encourage anyone, trying any way to come off this drug.
But for some of us (ME), I could no more taper tramadol, than I could learn to "drink like a gentleman". I knew how successful I would be on a taper (not), because I couldn't even stay on a regular daily dose...without always borrowing tomorrow's pills today. Every day, having nothing but the best intentions. And then I would cave and take tomorrow's pills again, on top of todays. And I knew withdrawal symptoms at the end of everyEVERY rx cycle. Preceeded of course my meaningless counting.
Here's a typical last 7 days of EVERY RX cycle. by that point, I might have had 35 pills left to last 7 days. "Five a day", I would remind myself. And some time after supper, I would take my 9th and 10th pills for the day and count once again. "25 pills left for six days now", I would remind myself. And by the last two days, I had tapered to 2 pills/day I couldn't sleep (I still had to work), I was in full blown withdrawal, and I was so relieved when I could pick up my next tramadol RX, that I would "treat myself" to 10-12 rather than the prescribed 8 pills/day. And I would start the 21 day cycle all over again. I don't believe I have ever recounted an average cycle in such detail before, but there you have it. That was my life for SIX years. Unitl in late November 2008, I found this place and asked myself, how many MORE of those "last days of every rx cycle" did I want to keep doing? It sucked. And some how, I figure that I am not the only one whose life revolved around tramadol.
I quit in December 2008, not because I was a hero or a stuf. I quit simply because I could no long continue doing the REGULAR WITHDRAWAL every 21 days. I could no longer essentially be worthless at work the last few days of every RX cycle. I felt like I had a bad case of the flu every 21 days, but I really was lost and without hope of ever breaking the grip this drug held over me.
I came here and saw that what I felt was not unique. I saw that if I could simply NOT put the pills into my mouth, moments would turn into days. And maybe, just maybe, I could string together enough days to eliminate the HOLD that this drug held over me for more than six years.
So I camped out at this site for 5-7 days. I posted often and read everything written about the battle I CHOSE to undertake.
Looking ahead frightened me. But I learned that I could "do" "now". And that was enough.
The most common question people ask those first few days is "how long will _____ last?
Acute withdrawal seems the worst the second through fourth days after taking your last tramadol and things evened out for me by the fith or sixth day.
After acute withdrawal, there were "weeks and weeks" of burry vision, lack of focus, and a side order of depression. But what kept me going was the knowledge that every day i didn't put a white pill in my mouth, I was one more day closer to COMPLETE freedom. If there was a kinder easier way out, i would bottle it and make a mint. But I have not found that easy softer way.
Eventually after "weeks and weeks" have passed since that last lovely white pill, you just realize one day that you have none of those post acute symptoms any more. And that MY FRIENDS is a beautiful thing.
I DO know that for me, addiction is a disease. And I expect that in big and small ways, I will spend the balance of my life coming to grips with this disease of addiction.
There seem to be two natures to old Fred. Though I am booze and drug free today, there is part of me at times that wants nothing more than to climb into a bathtub with a handful of pills and a bottle of wine, and take a vacation from feelings, from responsibilities, from stress, from fears, from me. But I simply cannot allow myself to go there. Cause I have been through enough of this addiction and cure stuff to know that the ending is not nearly as lovely as that first mouthful of pills or swallow of booze.
The reality for this person is that I will never be "cured" of my addictions. Like the big book says, (paraphrased) the best I can hope for is a daily REPRIVE and that reprive is DEPENDANT on my spiritual condition.
I liked the words to the Aborigine song Emily posted. It reminds me that "I am not it". That there is a bigger picture out there, life and purpose beyond what I see from inside these four walls.
Take a deep breathe warriors. We will be fine. You'll see...
Bigdreamz...thank you! It's been rough, but you can do it. To answer your question...I do not crave feeling "good", but I have craved something for the very "unwell" feeling that I have felt for a week. It's like I crave something to take this away, but I know what that is, and I am not willing to do it this time. It only serves to start this whole bunch of junk I have endured over the last week over again....nope, not interested! If someone filled my house, floor to ceiling, with tramadol right now, and I had to wade through it to get to my bedroom, I STILL wouldn't put one in my mouth. That's how determined I am.....get the picture???!!!
You're going to be fine. I promise you that. I can't tell you when, but you will be FINE!
Fred, I have a question for you. I was reading this forum last year (before I joined) when you had maybe a month off of the tram, and by reading and some determination, I stayed off of them for about 6 months. I wonder, after this amount of time, do you crave? Do you still think, on occasion, that you might could have "just a few" and not take anymore? That is what gets me EVERY time. I get through the worst part, only to tell myself that I can do it "one more time, without WD and consequence!" I always did the bargaining thing that you have described. I'll take a few more today and not as many for the next 3 or 4 days! HAHAHAHAHAHA! Right! It was a cycle that I don't want to live in anymore, but I seem not to know how. But my history dictates that that is what I will do this time, and that scares me to DEATH. No matter what I tell myself now, I know that these feelings will end, and I will make another deal with myself after awhile. I realize how nuts this sounds, but I am trying to be prepared for when it might happen. Right now.....there is not a human being on this planet big enough to force one down my throat, but I know that that feeling subsides, and I want to be prepared! What did you tell yourself in the beginning that helped when the urge came?
Thank you for your contribution here! You have been a huge help to me, personally, and I am sure you have helped many, many others! A BIG WHOOOOHOOOOOO to you, Fred! Well done, sir!
A big thanks to Emily and everyone else here. This forum has helped me daily since I started this one week ago today!!!
Fred...thank you from my heart..i get so much from your posts .your honesty and wisdom and encouragement...means a lot. for me taper is order of the day and i've been very successful so far..next week I go down again to 2 a day...saw my dr. yesterday and i had a moment of panic thinking about it..but it passed quickly.. for me the biggest problem is the fog..very hard to be focused...but im praying that will get better over time.."fit spiritual condition"...absolutely..and that is what Im missing (as i mentioned in earlier post, hard to be spiritually connected when the tramadol fortress will not allow my higher power to enter) ...Praying for all of you out here reading, posting, waging the war..sometimes you may have no idea what your post will mean to someone out there reading..it can change their lives and start them on road to recovery. so please keep posting...keep reading..
Love to all..peace and hugs..
Wishing you call courage, strength & hope
TH, I'm glad something I said hepled. You are helping others too, ya know? If we each just share from the heart, the next person might get fed.
Do I still crave tramadol? Um...not enough to want to subject myself to the tram-a-go-round again. You should know that I have spent decades either addicted to a drug, wishing I could stop, rationalizing why I didn't need to stop, or suffering horrible withdrawal from my drug(s) of choice at any given time. But I carry my sobriety in a delicate basket - knowing that the pilot light is always on. No, a few pills or a few drinks or a few cigarettes wouldn't probably hurt. But we both know that it wouldn't stop at a few. And "just a few": will have either of us back off to the races pretty darned quickly.
As I said above, there is part of me at times that wants nothing more than to climb into a bathtub with a handful of pills and a bottle of wine, and take a vacation from feelings, from responsibilities, from stress, from fears, from me. But I simply cannot allow myself to go there. Cause I have been through enough of this addiction and cure stuff to know that the ending is not nearly as lovely as that first mouthful of pills or swallow of booze.
Besides, I'm getting too OLD to know for sure that I have another quit left in me. And that MONTHLY withdrawal stuff was getting REALLY old, wasn't it? I still keep a VIVID memory of worrying whether my doctor would be in on "rx day" to refill my order. Cause it was a damned safe bet that I would be running on empty without any spares by the time rx day came around again.
After acute withdrwal, it really is encumbant on us to begin to explore WHY we are seemingly adverse to lifing life on life's terms. We need to find our own NEW ways to address physical pain, emotional hurts, fears, resentments and other triggers. I ha some physical pain that I chose to live with rather than requesting a perscription from my doctor. Because it's a fair bet that he could prescribe water to me, and I'd figure out a way to abuse it.
I still attend a 12 step meeting EVERY week and I have for nearly nine years. When I first began those, I asked my sponsor how long I NEEDED to attend those darned meetings. I don't think his response was original, but he told me that I NEEDED to attend AA meetings, until I WANTED to attend the meetings. Then I didn't NEED to attend them any longer. The way i figure it, it is pretty cheap insurance against taking that first drink again. And there are TONS of transferable skills for living without other drugs too. 12 step meetins are usually as cordial and caring as this forum...except the coffee is better and people really smile. :)
I drank and used because I am a frustrated perfectionist. Not that I ever COULD be perfect - far from it. But in so many areas of my life, I have always felt like I needed to excell. (academics, athletics, appearance, vocationally, relationally - in all things I have never been happy with my performances unless they were GREAT. And even then, I saw flaws.
For example, I could paint a room in the house and see only the flaws in the job. Someone else would see the room and compliment me on a fine job. I am capable of entirely DISCOUNTING all compliments and remaining foucsed on what was left undone, imperfect, etc. And I drank and used because most of the time, my BEST wasn't as good as I expected - perfection. So I drank and used to numb the fact that I wasn't what I expected of myself - EVER!
So today, I really MUST figure out how to live with my IMPERFECT self. Cause if I don't figure that part out, resentments and fears will build up. And all of a sudden, numbing myself doesn't sound like a crazy idea at all.
Quitting an addiction is the easy part. Living life as a drug free addict is the challenge.
Helping others alway get's me out of my self. Try opening a door for an elderly man or woman struggling with packages and see how you feel.
"Just as true emptiness holds all things, true silence bears all
things. Whatever is brought into this silence, whatever it touches,
is gradually silenced... not by an act of domination, but through
a peaceful integration of a lesser peace into a greater one."
hey guys, it's been a while since ive posted. lately things have been pretty miserable for me. they say an addict needs to hit rock bottom in order to want to change....well, last night was rock bottom for me. driving back to my hometown last night, i was literally crying most of the way. it was last night when i truly realized that i wanted to die. i was seriously contemplating running my car off a bridge.
the good new in all of this, is that i finally WANT to be done with tramadol. i know i've been saying that before, but i really believe this time i really want to get clean. ive been severely depressed as of late, so i finally went to my doc and told him about it. (i didnt mention the tramadol, which i know i should have. the only person who knows about my tramadol addiction is my ex girlfriend who, thank god, answered the phone last night when i needed to talk to someone). the doc gave me some SSRI anit-depressant. ive heard terrible things about people having seizures while mixing SSRI's and tramadol, so i'm literally scared to death to take the damn things. i'm taking about 5 pills per day right now (250mgs), and am hoping to be clean by may 10th, which is when i have 9 days off of work.
i desperately need some advice and support right now. i know that i'm in a really, really terrible place in my life right now. i thought the type of depression i had last night would be gone by this morning, but it's not. should i take the meds my doc gave me and risk having a seizure? are there any OTC meds that i can take to help with depression that won't induce a seizure? any advice would mean the world to me. thanks everyone.
Welcome Ty...so sorry that you are hurting so bad...but coming out here to post is proactive..so it sounds to me like you want to get help and get of the "tram-a-go-round"...I too have been dealing with severe depression..i've been on 150mg Tram a day and started an antidepressant 2 weeks ago - my has prescribed the trams and the anti depressant..he was not concerned - I also asked the pharmacist and she said she knew lot's of people who were on Tramadol and antidepressants. I am on a low dose 200mg Wellbutrin .. . This is my experience..you have to be comfortable with what you are doing..i really get that. I did not take the antidepressants for a long time because i was concerned about interaction..but the depression got so bad i knew i had to do something. Folks out here have talked about exercise..and I agree...if you can get out and walk or bike or hike or swim..anything...this will help..but it needs to be consistent. I am a relative newcomer out here..so I really cannot offer much advice or information. But I can offer my support and remind you that you are not alone...there are so many of of fighting this battle. I've been tapering..down from 250-300 mg per day..been on 150 a day for a month..Tuesday I start 2 pills a day... I would never have begun this journey had it not been for this forum out here and the support and encouragement. I am working with a therapist & my doctor..doing lots of supplements ... Im sure that there will be people on here at some point this weekend who can offer you some good advice..just hang in there...keep posting. I believe...as everyone says..that it will get better..wont be easy..but it WILL get better over time. glad you have support with your ex girlfriend..that is important.
Wishing your strength & courage & peace.
Thanks for your response, Fred. The reason I asked (or one of them) is that I always thought that the rough part was the "acute WD". I even told people that if I could get through the first few days, I could do it...no problem! RIGHT! Now I see that it may be the opposite. That many people may be able to do a week, but when life comes back without pills, well....you get the picture?! It's life on life's terms. It's...if you do the same things, you'll get the same result. That's what I am trying to avoid this time! I lived that perfection-chasing life too, and it's a killer. I could never catch up. Or be the nicest person, or have the best day, or treat EVERYONE like my world revolved around them. Then in my 20's, I found a way to do that.....vicodin! BAD MOVE! Long story short.....I asked my doctor for something non-addictive. NOW....this is THE doctor who sent me to rehab years ago. Know what he gave me???? Yep....tramadol. So here I am like everyone else! I am not blaming docs, though I think some are careless. My doc truly does not believe its habit-forming. I can't change his mind, so it's time to find a new doc! First question....."Do you think Tramadol is addictive?"
Welcome Ty, Hi Pat, thanks Fred good goin' tramhat.....the reason I don't call you 'hater' is because I think you can be 'bound' to anything you hate or love. (that doesn't go for loving people, ideas, principles...etc but 'things')
Ty- suicidal ideation is very serious. I don't think you'll risk a seizure with 250mg tram a day....although I would like to know the dose of effexor that you have prescribed.....also know that effexor is difficult to wean from....it must be reduced over time, sometimes fairly gradually BUT suicidal ideation must be taken very seriously. I am so glad you wrote about your experience here. (where is pharma?) and I recommend you ask both a pharmacist and an MD about the risk of seizures before starting the AD....also...would some therapy or a 12 step program be helpful (or both?) the day I learned that I need all the help I can get was a very important day for me......please keep posting.....
tramahat- nice post about perfectionism...you are so right...it's a killer
Hi Pat- keep going Girl....
I haven't had a craving for several weeks.....yeah! going to AA and alanon regularly. I feel so much better off the tram.
Also...I am taking Lamictal now for mood stabilization and it is helping me tremendously...should have done it years ago but I was adverse to psychotropic meds for many reasons (for me...I cannot assess anyone elses need here)
That is the One Good Outcome of my tramadol addiction
I am grateful to be off...and to have learned some very important lessons
chess- thanks for Guy stuff....always inspiring.
and know that You are Loved
Thanks 4leef! I am glad to see you're still doing well! I am on my way!
ty....honey, your doc can't treat you properly if you aren't honest. I can't give you info on drugs mixing with one another, but I know that SSRIs with tram is bad, bad, bad! BAD! Like...do not do it! But your doctor needs to know more than you may be telling them. And the suicide thoughts.....that is nothing to be playing with AT ALL. If you are depressed to that point, you need to talk to a doctor quickly and let them help you! I (we) will help you here, but you sound as though you need more than that???
I have had many customers combine an antidepressant with tramadol.I always warn them of possibility of an interaction but they still take them together.The tramadol dose in most cases is not over 300mg/day and the antidepressant is citaprolam in most cases.I do not recommend effexor and tramadol together.
Again they are listed as an interaction with tramadol.
I think as long as the dose of antidepressant is low and the tramadol is quite low there is less chance of seizures but who can predict.It is best to stay away from these combinations.
Bupropion increases dopamine not serotonin and in smaller doses may be more compatible,but itself has been known to cause seizures.
It is generally not recommended to combine antidepressants and tramadol because of its snri effects.
One can start the antidepressant after stopping the tramadol.
ty1987: It is dangerous, pure and simple. Why risk a seizure or worse? I've read that a serotonin flood isn't pretty or pleasant. You would be playing Russian roulette. If you don't feel comfy with your doctor, best to try another. You shouldn't be ashamed to come clean because he/she is not there to judge you, but to heal you, and has likely heard it all.
Hello people,I am pretty new here but reead alot especially in the last month,I will try to make this as short as possible,Im a 35 year old male, who has managed to have 2 back surguries been prescribed,oxycontin,lortab,vicadin you name it,no problem,But tramdol has shot me to hell.
I always have had what I call an addicted personality(not sure if I actually do or not) In college I drank on the weekends,i mean really drank,but have NEVER felt the chains like i do on tramodol. I use to think when I drank back in my 20's how bad it was and how giulty I felt the next day.well now Im learning(although I know alcholism is very serious to those affected)for ME,it was nothing. I could always get by the work week by saying"on the weekend im going to let loose" I did that for about 10 years.After college I met my significant other and we moved in together and all was well,although even back then I was just discovering if I took 4 trams instead of 2 they gave you almost an opiod buzz like oxy did but they were also much much easier to get from a dr.
Even after my second back surgery jan of 09 was not phy.hooked yet. was I an addict ? im sure I was. to make the long story short,and and my significant other of 8 years ended the realtionship this past december and since then ive been using 30 a day. minus a day here or there until I get desperate enough to find another way to get them. One of the biggest things for me is not only the acute w/d syptoms but the flood of "real emotions" that come even on the first day. emotions I have not dealt with since the break up.Then I read alot of stories here and although It helps alot to now people are going through the same things,I start to worry how the heck am I going to make it through day 28,when I cant even get to 3???
I have pushed and pushed the enveplope to my pharmascist getting early refills to the point my dr has called me and told me I need to set up an appt before he will approve any more refills.I hate all of this.I dont even want to THINK about how much my addiction probably caused the end of my relationship,its just too painful...I know the relationship needed to end years ago,but i stayed for comfort.then replaced it with tramodol.I took my last dose at 8pm last night on march 13th.thanks so much for reading this.!
Tramadont, from what I've read here it will be pure hell to suddenly quit after taking 30 trams a day. You need to come clean with your doctor, and see if he/she can help you taper. And though it may seem that a relationship with another is to blame, the most important relationship is the one we have with ourselves. Never be ashamed to be honest with yourself, or seek help when you need it. That is in fact a very courageous thing to do.
I've been MIA for a few days because I RELAPSED!! On my last day of 1 a day for 3 days I took 2 instead and then I caught a little buzz off 2 (probably from tapering) then I threw my hands up took 3 more because I'd already messed up! Then I took 5 the next day too....running off guilt and shame! But I went cold Turkey and today is day 3. I'm definately in WD's. I'm sweating and aching and can't sleep.....I don't have to tell anyone here about the condition of my stomach and intestines....you KNOW what's happening to me!!
Today is my oldest daughter's 15th birthday so my family's coming over for a party. Takng one to calm
the W/Ds.But I am still full of HOPE because God loves me and He will continue to give me strength to get free from this cycle of destruction. I'm grateful that i'm not "off and running" again!! That's God's power and mercy that I still have the desire to stop because normally a relapse lasts at least 6months to a year for me!! I'm glad your'e all here walking in this desert place w/me!
Ive tried to taper and I never can get past the first few days. Honestly I have found that once I accept Im out,and there is no way of getting anymore,it is much easier than to ponder and scheme and use time and energy while im the throws of cold turkey withdrawels. last time I made it 3 days and I really was okay,but then my mind started ticking and ticking thinking of ways to get some more early and those last few hours were brutal waiting for pharmacy to call back.when in reality it seems to be less stressful just to accept im out, Im done.and thats it. '
Im already in withdrawel now at almost 20 hours without,but I did manage to go walking for 20 minutes just to get moving cause i cant stay still anyways. My energy is up,and what is always been my pitfall is just waiting to get through the 5 days or so and telling myself on day 5 i will "feel" sober or whatever,,,this time Im trying to look at it like Im sober now...it will only get better from here..
Tramadont.....It WILL get better from here. No matter what point we are at, it gets better after the pill taking stops. The first days are no fun, and the hard part is staying clean. I used to think that the first few days were the hardest, but like you, I would make it through the tough part, only to start right back up when I figured out a way! My wheels were always turning about it. It's honestly easier for me to be OUT of pills. If I had tried to taper, and some do successfully, I would have been OBSESSED with my next dose. I was always going to use my "next bottle" to get myself off of them, but that never happened. I had no self control. No discipline when it came to pills. Tapering does work for some, but to me, facing weeks and weeks of "some sort" of withdrawal never seemed right for me. I needed to get it over with. Make sense?
Bigdreamz.....don't be hard on yourself. It happens. Keep trying, and keep that faith!
exactly tramahater....I am out but with each and every bottle I always say" oh i will take 20 THEN start a taper" each and every time,until guess what? Im out! what I cant get over is how easy this stuff is to get early,maybe its just my pharmacy but they let me refill it like 180 every 2 weeks. I think I have finally pushed it to far as I knew I eventually would,because My dr's office called and said I needed to make an appt to talk about "it".
Some pharmacies have it figured out, trust me. But some, like some docs, do not know the danger of it. IMO....pharmacists know way more about drugs, their interactions and their safety than docs do! Just an opinion.
So are you completely out of pills? No more refills? How many days have you been out if you are?
All addicts will eventually push someone too far with this kind of thing. We are always pushing for an early refill, or going off cause our doc is out on "the" day we can refill or whatever...you get the picture?!!! I just got fed up with taking pills for a few days and then having to endure withdrawal EVERY time. It stopped being worth it last week. I am done! A few days of energy and good mood are NOT worth what I have had to go thru for the last week....NO freaking way!
I got my last refill was 180 last monday and took them all up by saturday(last) night...but keep in mind I am only suppose to take 2 a day.the pharmacy let me refill the 180ct script every 2 weeks.I did get a call from my physician last weds after the last refill and he wanted to make an appt for me before another script would be given...so I all but know what that means...im in trouble with him. but i knew all along I would be because for the last 3 months I have taken 25 to 40 per day. Although I do have a refill on the bottle there is no way in hell im going to try to get it especailly after the dr has already called me. I would imagine I would be pretty upset not knowing if I could or not get it refilled only to have the Pharmacist call me and tell me no. honestly I think the dr found out through the pharmacist how many i was taking,and truth be told he proabbly cancelled the remaining ones anyways...believe me its better not having to think and think about ways to get it,after I accept im out.
But then again im only in the fist 24 hours...by tomorrow who knows!!:)
I know what you mean. I can call in a refill now anytime I want. I choose not to today. Maybe tomorrow I will not feel so strong and will need help, but for now, NO WAY! I don't try to predict the future. That gets me in trouble. I am in the position now that I HATE! The horrible WD is over. I am at the point of not feeling awful but not feeling good. Just okay. The thing I know is that I don't want a repeat of this past week. It has been pretty miserable. Alot miserable, actually! I just hate this point, because it seems to go on forever. I have "waves" of happiness and feeling good, and in 3.5 minutes I am back to just okay! This part just seems like it goes on forever for me. It could take weeks and weeks before I am somewhat normal, but I know that I will get there eventually if I don't pick up a refill!
I hate to say it, but you are probably right. Your doc is onto you. The best thing you can do is let it go. Don't push. In all honesty...your pharmacist is probably worried about you and told your doc to try to save your life. He may have just done that!!! 25 to 40 a day is a bunch. You are lucky you didn't have a seizure. I had one driving once. Not pretty. I have a rod in my arm now from that bad decision! All in the name of tramadol!
Yes tramahate i know all to well what you mean. I know 25 to 40 is alot.I use to take 4 at a time,but moved up to 6 three to four times a day,and it adds up. And your going to think Im nuts but I have had a seizure about a year ago,I dont remember it,but my partner saw me have it and it scared them to death. I quit then for a month or 2. Honestly I have not had a problem quitting until this past december once I started using each and every day since december I have taken alot,now if i quit I also get sick too. but there is no other way,Ive tried a taper 15000 times and I cant do it,I I iwsh I did have the willpower that some here have,but I dont.
I hope you've stick around especially since you've made it to the point I would love to be at! no chills...thats the worst for me so far...the dang chills!
Yes...that is bad. Try a heating pad or a heated blanket. If you don't have those, put a regular blanket in the dryer. That will give you some temporary relief. Also, take a bath as HOT as you can stand. That will keep me warm for awhile.
This is just my opinion...ok? Don't anyone go crazy! If you keep taking 25 to 40 a day, you will have another seizure at some point. It's just a matter of time. I could sometimes feel my mouth and body jerk at 12 a day. I know that tolerance builds slowly, and you didn't start out with that many, but it will get you again. I'm speaking from experience here. Tram has a LONG half life, so when you keep taking them at the same doses for days and days, it builds up in your system and when you least expect it.......BAM seizure!
BUT...having said all that. I hope you are done with them and don't ever go back now! Just remember how badly you feel now, right? Chills, sweats, stomach stuff, rls. Am I getting close? It feels awful to go through this for nothing. I have done it more than once, and I feel like a nut when the WD starts again and I know I did it to myself ONCE AGAIN!
I don't know if i am writing in the right place, but I too am trying to recover from Tramadol. I am starting to see how way out of control my use is getting and it scares me. The thought that I depend on something SO MUCH scares me. Today will hopefully be the last day I take them. I have been through withdrawal from Tramadol before so I know what I am up against and I am scared. Has anyone else had problems breathing when they withdrawal? I was diagnosed with asthma, but have only recently connected the two.
I start a new job tomorrow so hopefully this will be a distraction. The sweating and chills (and the breathing problems) are the worst... Any suggestions on how to make this a little easier? Has anyone tried an epsom salt bath? I am going to get some tonight so its ready when I get home from work tomorrow.
Please help! I am going through this alone, just moved to a different state to start things over and my boyfriend hasn't moved down with me yet so I'm doing this 100% by myself. Any suggestions or support are VERY welcome!
Reading over all these posts, you all are SO strong and I admire that.
Thank you all! <3 p1nkee
Take epsom salt baths...a must!
Get all your comfy clothes washed so that when you are at home you can relax and not have to worry about chores.
Also, you will take lots of baths, so get all your towels clean.
Immodium....GET SOME! Also tylenol, advil, bananas, crackers, soup, gatorade, B12 sublinguals, multivitamin if you can stomach it. Gatorade saved me! I would definitely suggest that!
Heating pad or blanket or both if you have them.
I used lots of pillows, trying to get comfortable
Since you are starting a new job, I know you can't take off work, but I could not have worked and done this! You may find that you have to taper. I have no tapering advice. I have not done it. You might want to call your doctor for some medical-type suggestions. The insomnia is bad. That will be rough while trying to work, in my opinion.
Thank you so much! Even hearing a response is so helpful.
I've tried stopping quite a few times, but it usually ends after 1 day and a half. I can't deal with the uncomfortable feeling and sweatiness. I know I really need to do this now, so I am determined. And I am so happy that I found this site. My boyfriend knows everything about my addiction, but there is only so much he can help with. He's never gone through it or even taken tramadol. So I am very thankful to have found you guys!
On my way out the door with my new shopping list! Will keep you all posted!
Hello p1nkee,and welcome I just started posting today too for the most part.and im at the end of day 1. so far so good,and by that I mean well im not at my wits end yet,I hope i can sleep tonight...I do wish you luck and hope everything goes good with your new job.
tramahate I know and I really agree with you,that is how addicted I am,i know the stuff could send me into seizures and still took it,now Im starting to worry the cold turkey w/d will make me have them!! I just passed the first 24 hours..Im okay..Im trying not to worry about how bad tomorrow or the next day could be. All that matters is I feel okay for now.Alot of people I have talked to cant believe Im out of bed after cold tukey stopping after 30 a day for the last 3 months.who knows tomorrow could be that day ! I hope not though. I think im going to turn in now to bed,I hope everyone that is trying to stop and quit like me will have a good night..and tramahate you have helped me especially this first 24 hours...I hope to find you on here soon!
BigDreamz, Welcome back. I must say, you have done well after a QUICK relapse and return. Frankly, that is miraculous to CHOOSE your way back so quickly.
NOTICE - nobody here is perfect. ASll of us have failed when it comes to tramadol specifically and quite possibly addictions generally. It's OK to post about our failures. This is a no judgment zone. If this place were perfect, it sure wasn't after I arrived. RELAX, SHARE, BRAG, CRY...work on getting well. Because the day may be coming soon, when I will need you to be well for me when I fall next time.
P1nkee, Welcome. You will succeed but OMG, starting a new job the same time you are beginning CT withdrawal? Epsom Salt Bathes may help as may some of the other items listed under "Thomas Recipe". No doubt, you will feel "umcomfortable". If you can get a little sleep each night, it will bode better for you.
If you wake up tomorrow and you still haven't used, you will have 2 days +. At some point, you need to take encouragement in knowing that acute withdrawal won't last forever. Definately probably the worst will pass by the 4th or 5th day. So as you keep tacking on another moment or another hour, you should start considering what you have accomplished as an INVESTMENT.
Month after I month I suffered withdrawal symptoms when I ran low on pills every cycle. If ONLY someone had told me that I could be FREE from this tramadol, if I could just figure out a way to stop taking them for 4-5 days. I have experienced SUCH a wonderful wellness these past 16 months since being off tramadol. Even if withdrawal had been twice as bad as it was, I would do it ALL over again just to be DONE with this terrible drug. Invest 4-5 days of feeling like hell to get your future back.
Tramadon't - good luck to you man! I was so familiar with alll of THAT drama you described with running out of pills, counting pills, calling for early refills, yelling at the pharmacist, planning trips out of town around my pill supply (and always being EMPTY by the time I got back into town.) Once you get free - you will haave SO much not to miss.
ty-just a super quick note to tell you that i've been on the quintessential SSRI--prozac--for over a decade, and was doing up to 25 tramadols a day. i am not telling you that it's not dangerous, but "serotonin syndrome" is very uncommon, and i really don't think you need to worry. indeed, i have increased my prozac dosage to 40mg/day in anticipation of getting off of tramadol. i noticed long ago that when i took my prozac regularly (being on it so long, sometimes i don't take it for a week or so, if i run out or what have you), it totally diminished the "fun" part of tramadol. i inferred from that that prozac might also inhibit some of the not-fun tramadol effects (i.e., withdrawal symptoms), and i'm sure i'm right. good luck to you--i am about to take the plunge tomorrow or the next day, so i'll be jabbering on here a lot :O
What disturbs me is that more and more, psychiatrists and physicians are serving as drug pushers for the pharmacutical companies; they're even pushing this crap on our children. This is bad for us and our country in so many ways. In general, we've allowed big corporations to make us ill, then provide the cure! Look at the obesity problem, for example. TV constantly bombards us with unhealty snack and fast food commercials. Soft Drinks in the supermarket are much cheaper that healthy fruit juice! Vegetables are more expensive that proccessed foods. They also keep us agitated to spend, spend, spend--tell us what we need to buy to be whole and happy and, especailly, to spend money we don't have causing us to go deep into debt. To add insult to injury they sell us toys from China that poison our children!! It's no wonder we're depressed.
Thus, we get caught in a pernicious circle. While we're narcotized and complacent they fleece us, outsource and in-source our jobs, then send us the bill to bail out the very criminals who are responsible for the fleecing and the wrecking. It really amounts to a kind of 'rape.' There should be no mystery why we lack the energy and motivation to turn things around, and why we're reaching for antidepressants and seeking escapes like never before: Alcohol, Prozac, cigarettes, tramadol, Xanax, Valium, et al.
I want to thank all of you at this site for helping to wake me up to what's been going on both inside and outside of my own small world, and inspiring me research alternatives for these poisons they're telling us to put into our bodies. Don't get me wrong there are a lot useful, necessary, and beneficial drugs (such as antibiotics and hormone replacement meds); however, there are many natural (and better) remedies and substitutes for the outrageously expensive (and in some cases even deadly) snake oil that's pedaled.
Just saw a program where they put a 5 year old child on 4 different psychoactive meds--can you say "guinea pig"? Makes one question all the so-called 'wisdom' that so many rely on the medical profession for.
Sorry, didn't mean to vent on you all this morning,
I took about 300mg of tram daily for the full months of Jan and Feb and then decided I wanted to quit. The past two weeks have been hell. It's like having the flu plus a bad hangover and at night when you want to sleep there is this guy at your bedside who will poke you with a sharp stick when he detects that you are getting comfortable. This goes on all night and you get up the next morning to do it all over again.
I only took this medication for two full months and wasn't taking 20 pills/day for 5 years as some of you have and I'm still suffering like this and worse than some of you major abusers. How is this so? I'm worried I have permanent brain damage from this poison. For the past 14 nights I'm up at least 3 times every night since when I lay down and about to drift off my brain does not like that and my restless body symdom kicks in with the poke of the sharp stick and there's no use lying there any longer. Please tell me that all this will subside one day. I just do not understand how I seem to have worse WD symptoms than others who are far worse abusers.
JT it does seem that everyones case is different, I was taking 25+ a day for the past 3 months. andtoday is my 2nd day cold turkey. I m counting on this not lasting past 1 week. So far it has not been too bad,and I mean it not pretty but Im not as bad as I have been other times I have quit. I know at night especially when you want to sleep you are tired,but you cant doze off,and then you when can,you start tossing and turning,and wake up feeling worse than you did the night before...it does make things so much worse. Have you tried melatonin? it helps some times,but not always.
I did manage to squeeke out 4 hours of sleep from 6 am to 10 am...I did feel better yesterday on the first day,but I knew the 2day on would get hairy!!! Im going to do it this time...Im never going to get back to the person I was just a few months ago unless I go through this hell now...I even managed to go walking this morning,hopefully I will sleep better tonight...
Hi JT. It will subside. Were you taking anything else that you have stopped? Two weeks really isn't that long, when it's tramadol we are talking about. The sleep is the LAST thing to return for most and for me! The restlessness at night literally makes me dread bedtime! And that makes it even worse. I get anxiety as it gets dark, because of how bad my nights have been. If you read a lot of the posts, you will see that most everyone has trouble falling and staying asleep for awhile. Some even resort to sleeping medication for a bit. I can't because I was dependent on them once, so I stay away from that!
It gets better. I have been off for about 10 days, and although I am better, I am still just "ok"...not good or normal! The really horrible WD is over for me, but the lingering post acute withdrawal lasts awhile.
thanks for the advice everyone. i'm going to see my doctor in about an hour and come clean about everything. the past few days have been the worst of my life...the depression is getting so bad. i need to do something, and i'm going to get off these f*****g pills
so day 1 is almost complete. first day of work definitely took my mind off the pills for a while, but now that i'm home and by myself and the chills have just started.... well, i don't have to tell you.
trying hard not to dig into my stash right now... but i am contemplating on tapering. its not an option to miss a day of my new job, especially working in the medical field. i'm debating on this vs. just to keep trekking on.
what would you guys do? should i just keep going?
how is everyone today? and thank you for all the good lucks that were posted last night! your support is awesome
Chess, VERY well said. I couldn't agree more. And I want to thank you, too, for inspiring so many here (like me) to do our own research into various natural/herbal/non-pharmaceutical approaches to health issues. Also...Picked up Guy Finley's "The Secret of Letting Go" at a bookstore this week. And I am really learning a lot about myself. Extremely good, important things. I would recommend that book to everyone I know. We can all benefit from its wisdom.
JT...brother, my heart goes out to you. We all understand. We've been there, and we will walk with you through this crazy WD process. YES...it gets better. At two weeks you are nearing the end of acute WD, and things will improve rather dramatically for you soon. One night you'll lie down and wake up six hours later, having slept without being poked by the guy with the stick! I loved that analogy. So true, so accurate.
After that, you may experience a few weeks of some varying degrees of sleeplessness/fatigue/depression. You may not. Some of us do. I did. Others here have gotten through the acute WD and been home free afterward. I would think that your shorter time on tramadol will correlate with a speedier progression through the post-acute stuff. I will pray for you, that it will be so.
Warriors, I admire and respect all of you so much. Fighting the good fight, winning it the only way it can be won -- minute by minute. You are my heroes.
I've been fighting with the depression. Still fighting with it. But I am not giving up. Some days it kicks my @$$. It's a bad deal, but it's the way it is. I trust it will get better in time.
I made it through today without refilling my script. (today was THE day!) I called my doc and told him that I am done and won't be asking for anymore! That is a step that I always refused to take. Secretly, I think that I didn't want to mess up my chance for later??? Well, it's over. I don't want to have a few days of pills, only to go thru WD at this time next week. It's been a ROUGH week!
that is HUGE tramahater!!!! congrats!
that is the biggest, if not one of the hardest steps. and there is so much truth when you say that secretly you didn't want to say anything for fear of messing up your chances for later. even though i want to quit, i do not want to say anything to my dr. and honestly, i think that is the reason why.
thank you for inspiring the rest of us!!!!
Tramhater, I can completely relate to the "not wanting to mess up chances for later thing".. I was on a pain management contract for um, way too long. And the ambivelence is mind numbing. Back and forth Id go, like a clock pendulum then faster and the faster, till I finally told them I needed to be done and find another way to deal with a bone formation thing. So I decided to do it. But I did also have a refill, and Im tapering, which has been only using as needed.
This is my second time gloing off. I realize that I have been using that garbage to ( not feel ) and I just need to work on making decisions. The tri-atholon stuff is going miraculously well!! And my other stuff too, I am inbetween assignments at work and I do worry alot about my down time, I am open to any ideas people have as to deal with that. I have alot of energy and just need to realize how to manage my time. With work,and other. I am dealing with half the script left. I am planning to dump it at some point this week and just dont know when. I dont want any accidents, of any kind that have to do with draggin this out. I get very uptight about life deciding. It seems to be the trigger that sets me up for failure, so I am working on trying to do it week by week. I was at day by day but now at least I feel like I can look out a small bit further. It seems at first when you go off the stuff you have tunnel vision, and your scope is so narrow. It is broadening a bit but since IM not completely off it. Im not really confident enough to say, I can manage it yet. I do think some people in my life have really assisted in creating a disbelief that I can do anything myself. My family, my ex. I think sometimes taking all that stuff led us or me at least to think I did need something or someone to get by. Faith is what is needed. Alot of it.
I know this is the second time. I just really want to be done, and get down on myself when I dont completely follow through. I know Im on my last time. I just tapered this time instead of CT so I still have alot of ambivelent feelings to cope with.
Good luck all.
Thanks to everyone for your comforting words and encouragement. All of you are so kind and positive. Isn't it great to come to a place like this and find kindred spirits? I know things will get better. I mean...the day you stop taking tram is automatically the first day of recovery and you can go nowhere but up from there. Then this Summer you are going to be on the beach in the Sun having a fantastic time and this will all be a bad memory and lesson learned to never be repeated. Good luck to all of you.
I had a half day today at work. And since I write, and have some homework I thought I would pop back in. Yes, the summer, I want to get soo much to a place where I am broadening out my view to the months to come, where I can feel healthy. ( Healthier ) and be able to have a plan for my future, I know in these times, there are so many ways to go about work, family things, and all of our own individual hopes, dreams, and goals.
I want to be at peace, and have faith that there is that place, this is sort of how I see it. That quiet, safe, still and energizing place in this corner of my mind where I can go to prepare for the mental challenges. I tend to really push myself, and Its hard to be calm. But this forum really helps me to see the bigger picture. Even when I go back and read older posts. I am working on a plan of when I will go back to work.
The brief story behind that, is I had a terrible break up,( fiance ) the first time I went off my stuff. And then I got a new job in January, but without my um ( pills ) I wasnt ready for the stress. So I gave my two weeks. Then I felt like dog do about myself for getting to wound up about going back full time, being so low, saddened about my relationship, and just the stress of a new job, I actually gave my two weeks. Then I slipped, and now Im back to not being dependent but I did slip and its a fast slope if we dont catch it in time. I want to try to figure out what went wrong,????
I just gave my two weeks, and went back to all my other things I do. And unemployment. I am feeling that I may be ready to go back to a job, ( maybe not sales) But I feel like such a failure to not only freak out at the stress, and break up then quit. Its been a month and a half, and I went to a couple A.A. meetings, and I know I desperately need to come up with a real strong "war plan"..
Has anyone had trouble with life stuff, after?? Like taking on things. I dont know how I would handle the stress because I freaked and didnt give myself a chance to. I have starting anxiety my counselor says. Ive always been this way which is part of the reason I ended up on that garbage anyway.
Any input is appreciated. Im scared to just jump into life again. I could theoretically go get a job, if I think Im ready, most my physical symptoms are gone, just my mental issues. Which sometimes I ocd about pills. But I do better and I know without them. I just get worry warting over the job, and I have a new person on the radar that seems to be gently leading somewhere. Somewhere good actually. I just wish I wasnt such an anxious person. I have to maybe practice yoga--or maybe um.. Go bungy-jumping to make full time work not look ominous....
Mandy...full time work is a huge commitment.One has to put other activities on the back burner while holding down a full time job.But we have no choice because we have to eat and have stability in our lives.Most of us are defined by our jobs.
You have so many things going I wonder how you could fit in a full time job.Perhaps part time is better for you because of all your other interests,but one usually does not make enough money working part time.
You really are a busy little lady who wants to do it all and when you can't you are probably disappointed in yourself.
I remember when I was younger I took on too much and could not say "no" and was constantly going working full time and volunteering at the diabetic clinic,giving speeches at meetings.
Do the things that will benefit your life and pace yourself...take time to breathe and rest a little.
Perhaps a new sweetie will be perfect for you and together you will make a happy and successful couple.
Once you have a concrete goal like saving for a house or something you will be able to buckle down .
Don't be afraid to jump into life again..Don't be afraid of anything(except pills) and live your life the best that you can
Anybody that can run as many miles as you do can do anything they want.
You know how much determination and guts it takes to finish a run.
OKay Im at the end of day 2 cold turkey..and today was rough,I know from here on out until day 5 is not going to be pretty( ive been using 25 + pills a day for a few months),but I have resolved that I have to go through this if i ever want to get better. I admire everyone here who is doing this quitting thing and has a family and career or school going on,I dont think I could handle that at all. I took a very very early retirement this past summer(im 35) and I live alone,so I think that helps me during thit awful awful time. The worst part of my w/d has always been the raw nerves and anxiety..I cant watch tv,I cant read and cant sit still i cant work in the yard. i just pace and smoke...honestly I dont think I can do this for 2 weeks,god I hope this ends before then. I hope everyone here has a peaceful night,and tramahater, great for you for doing what you did today.. your at day 10,,,,I would LOVE to be at that point.Just remember what the first few days were like! I think I will attempt to go to bed and get ready for day 3!
Mandy, I think the trouble some of us have "after" is that we have numbed with pills for so long that we (me) forget how to do things without our little white helpers! I am having to learn a lot about my everyday life now, not to mention the big things. Just daily stuff seems like a chore! But we have to jump back in eventually. Look at it like doing something for yourself that is positive!
Chess, Nice rant. I couldn't agree more with everything you have said. I have also observed that when in the course of a battle, it is empowering to take a realistic look at some of what brought us to this point - and get a little angry.
JT, Could you clarify how you have gone about "stopping" this drug? If you are tapering, I ccould see ongoing withdrawal for the duration of two weeks. However, if you stopped entirely and have not taken ANY more of the drug, the RLS should begin to greatly subside. May I ask why you started taking this drug? (I'm not being nosey, just trying to figure out whether ongoing RLS could be related to a prior condition?
Sometimes neuropathy in the lower extremity is caused by low back disc issues or even diabetes. I'm just thinking out loud here...
Tramadon't, Thank goodness for four hours sleep. Insomnia and the accumulating sleeplessness that first 4-5 days is rough.
Tramhater, congratulations on ten days off the drug. Your posts are so encouraging to the really new comers arriving here.
P1nkee, Congratulations on making it 24 hours without any tramadol. Now you are contemplating going back onto them, at a lower dose...tapering, I think you said. I will try to be gentle with you P1nkee, but yesterday, you did say, "I've tried stopping quite a few times, but it usually ends after 1 day and a half. I can't deal with the uncomfortable feeling and sweatiness. I know I really need to do this now, so I am determined. And I am so happy that I found this site." I pray that you continue to endure the temporary suffering that is set before you P1NKEE, for the PRIZE of being free from this drug by the end of this week.
Don't contemplate Wednesday or Thursday. Just stay focused on this moment. Can you decide NOT to use tramadol right now? If you feel temped to use these again, jump in the shower and make yourself a sandwich and then see if the urge has passed. If you are determined to BEAT this drug, please please please, dump/flush your stash too.
I quit smoking a while ago and I found that if I could just distract myself for a couple minutes (set your watch) the intense urge passed. I understand that we are talking about different forms of addiction, but I am just hoping to strike on something that might help you.
I'll leave it to others here to comfort you if you cave. Think of the hours of time you have now invested. At some point, is't the investment too great to throw away, only to sail this SAME course weeks or months from now.
Click on my ICON and go to my profile page. Click "read all" (journal entires) and distract yourself reading my early journal entries. Something there might help you out (I hope).
FMN, I continue to say little prayers concerning your depression. Are you able to get out and go for any walks outdoors. I find the psychic benefits usually outway the cardio benefits as I walk by flowers, yards, landscaping, dogs walking owners, etc. etc.
Also...Picked up Guy Finley's "The Secret of Letting Go" at a bookstore this week. And I am really learning a lot about myself. Extremely good, important things. I would recommend that book to everyone I know. We can all benefit from its wisdom.
Thank you for your kind words FMN. That's a great book. Guy will take you to your dragons and help you slay them. It's running away that makes them stronger--remember the bogey man under the bed? It's like that.
Presently researching DHA and DMAE for fighting mental fog and fatigue. Don't know if either will help with AD or 'brain zap' effects. But I think mulungu tea may help those in the acute withdrawal phase sleep better at night. 4-leaf might proffer some valuable input here.
I thank everyone for their feedback and encouragement,
Hello everyone! I just rolled out of bed,I actually slept 9 hours uniterrupted sleep,cant say I had very pleasant dreams but I still did sleep! I cant tell you how long it has been since I have slept like that,even on the pills. I took a melatonin and I guess it worked,I actually feel like I can tackle this day now that I am well rested.
"Catch the 'devil' behind the twelfth tree [before he can advance]."
For any addictive behavior there are 3 steps toward slipping back: temptation, entry, possession. Presence in the moment will prevent the temptation from advancing to possession.
"Nothing is too hard for God"
Vernon Howard ( www.anewlife.org )
"We must learn to see that our true dwelling place is not that
mind filled with the incessant chattering of our thoughts, any
more than the ceaseless chirping of branch-hopping birds is the
same as the deep and quiet forest in which they dwell."
This has been discussed here before but I can't help but throw it in again. My almost 15 yo Siberian Husky is coming to the end of his life. There will be no more treatments, surgeries, meds, etc...it' s time to just let him go. The vet, concurring with this decision, said he would give us some pain med and tranquilizers to help him through if he seemed to be suffering or was extremely anxious. So, lo and behold, I go to pick up the meds, and what did he give me but TRAMADOL! Aaaaaaaaaargh!
I have been blessedly free of tramadol for 5 months now, and I can identify with what many of you are going through like it was yesterday. I would never give that poison to my beloved dog.
My hopes and prayers are with all of you,
Nice to see you again Lillyval. Thanx Pharma9 for the great response. Yeah, its the taking on everything that got me in trouble last time. And I do think the ( happy, happy, joy,joy,numbing) had alot to do with it. Learning to take things a step at a time. And yes, who ever said it.. GET ANGRY--at what brought us here.
Lillyval, good for you for not giving it to your little doggie, man I do hope it gets something though.
I am on like day two or three of weaning,. I will attempt to flush the rest in a day or two. By the week end I may need to work on my focus, howmuch I can take on. And maybe journaling about my work. I think I may go back part time. I never had to get unemployment in my entire life till this year!! Part the economy, part-my addiction, and part all my many activities. Since I put so much work into them I want to reach these goals. They are my passion, I guess though Ive always been somewhat frugal and would rather be active, then rich. Just somewhat of a hippie chick.
I am not so unique to my other athlete friends, but yeah, I think maybe going into part time, and a new "sweetie" as someone said, may actually be healing. This relationship actually feels, um healthy.. Respectful, and at a pace I can handle.
That being said I have to find a pace that works for me, I made a sort of new years resolution, that now that Im getting off all this garbage, to go back to work I actually enjoy. Ive been pretending to like my job for years. Cant stand it.
Maybe I need to face the reality that sometimes work just stinks, it gets in the way of my goals. LOL However, I can ( if I really look )
Maybe find a job I like somewhat.
Thnx. I have a hard hill work out, on my tri-bike, and a hard run too. Today, Im starting to work on visualization techniques, to help face down the extreme pain, that comes after these trainings. Gotta love to hate it.LOL
Day 3 cold turkey..this is hell..I am expecting today and day 4 to be bad,on the 5th day I hear it starts to get better. In the mornings I feel alot better,the afternoons and evening are the worst,tomorrow will be big for me because I have not made it to day 4 since december. I am starting to get to angry at the pills but also myself for doing this to myself.I hope it gets better soon!
I'm praying for you TRAMADONT......praying that God will give you strength and power to make it through. I'm still struggling myself. My 5 kids are on SpringBreak for 2 and a half weeks so i'm using that as an excuse to not continue cold turkey. I'm taking 2 in the a.m. and 1 in the pm to keep the W/D's to a minimum. I don't wanna be in bed in full W/D's and make the kids fend for themselves.... i'm a single mom. I was trying to be FREE from this before their break but this addiction is stronger than my human willpower.
God please help all of us here and give us whatever it is we need to be free from this addiction thats stealing so much from us. Give strength and comfort to those of us who are struggling with W/D's or cravings. Please put back together anything in our lives that this poison has destroyed and give power to those who are already free so they can stay free. Thank you God!
Thank you so much Bigdreamz! I know what you mean and I totally understand. I was trying to get off this in feb then march 1st,but I really have no choice except to go Dr Shopping,and I am not even up for that when I know It will just lead me eventually back here in a month or 2 back to square one. I ve been there too many times. I am confidant I will make it,I just am discovering life again even on day 3. when I was using so many pills a day since december i just laid in bed all day watching old movies and letting life get by,I forget what life was even like before that. and that was just 4 months ago!!! its crazy.im trying not to think too far ahead cause that always makes me anxious...im further that I was yesterday and the day before.I just pray I have a peaceful night of sleep,as I do everywhere else here on this forum!!! goodnight all..day 3 finally coming to a close!
What is addiction? Is it when you continue to take a substance because if you were to stop you would be sick? Is it that you enjoy so much how it feels to take said substance that you can not stop? I've been trying to get to the bottom of this. I was taking Tram to relieve the symptoms of Ankylosing Spondolytis (arthritis of spine). I just quit taking the devil pills and felt like sh*t so kept popping them and they also made me feel fantastic...or so I thought. Does this make me an addict? Am I an addict if I were to order from the Internet only? Am I an addict if I sit on my front porch in aticipation of the FedEx truck as I've heard others do? What officially makes one an addict to a substance?
I want to say good luck to tramdont, and to JT50.----I know that confusion. I was given the meds a year ago for a legitimate injury .. However, when it healed. I just liked the numbing of feelings. And withdrawels I was afraid of. I think there are different levels of addiction. But dependance isnt the same as addiction. My dr. states its just math, anyone who has to or even doesnt have to who takes these opiate type things, will become dependant. I think when addiction sets in, there are alot of genetic components, and behaviors that are like, you obsess about them. You need more and more.
Its not the same as someone who can use them for the purpose of pain only then stop. They may have withdrawels too, but non-addictive types just dont turn on as easy as an addictive brain to the fix the opiate seems to provide. It is a LIE. A BIG LIE.
Because like people have said, you will just have to face this down the road, and you will miss alot of "real life" if you keep hiding out and using. Its a temporary thing. And, REAL LIFE.. Is soo much better!!!
Yes lots of prayers. So we all stay strong. If you can get past day four again THATS AWSOME!!!
Im done this is my dump time. Wish me luck.
I went down from 4---3---2,
And tomorrow I start over. Like I said before. I havent been on these contstantly, but its been in and out since months ago.WD stink. They are scary. And my psychological issue is to distract myself as much as I can. Without overdoing it this time....
Im doing this a seconds time.
Heres praying it sticks...
For all of us!!!
Hello Warriors All-
Tramadont- it is grueling those first few days. Every cell in my body was cryin' for the drug. On fire, then freezing with some bizarre and uncomfortable stomach troubles, too. Most important for me was support, both here and in my life. Also coming to terms with the truth about my 'condition' I was addicted and a 'slave' to this drug. Every day I was in mild withdrawal before my first dose and didn't know it. my mind and eyes were veiled in the Tramafog and although initially stimulating tramadol caused irritability and inner restlessness and emotional disturbance. someone very wise, on this site said w/d is the opposite of everything the drug did 4 u when you first started taking it.....you know, the lulling lie....if it gave you energy, then your energy will be drained in w/d-- if it relieved pain..your receptors will feel inflamed for some days....it made me not want to eat, then when the dose started wearing off, all I wanted was sugar! Anyway you are doing great, one moment at a time....there is a wall of pain now....we all went through it...on the other side of that wall is a blissful freedom and an emancipation from this monster....also joy and peace...no more life revolving around the 'little whites' I believe in you!
tramahat- great news, 10 days....great to see you posting and encouraging others. I admire your courage and honesty. I did the same thing. called my MD and told him I was addicted. he was not that helpful and he did explain a wean but I was already 3 days in....so I just kept going....I used a heating pad every night (still do) and got a prescription for clonidine...a blood pressure med that is non addicting and helps with w/d....chess told me about mulungu tea...i ordered some last week and I believe it helps tremendously for sleep...nothing else has for me, anyway...
mandy- keep posting ! I like hearing your awareness of the numbing of feelings....yesterday I cried a good cry (never been much of a crier)....it was cleansing.. not depression or self pity but a real connection with my consciousness...letting out...releasing stored pain....wonderful!
bigdreams- 5 kids!! wow Hon--a plateful,there... it is all good...follow your heart....you have the willingness and awareness to do this deal as you are able...I don't think causing further damage to the family helps us be fortified enough to get through that wall
be kind and gentle with yourselves PLEASE
time will pass YOU WILL BE FREE
and pain is often the price of freedom
all is well
You are Loved
Chess, Thank you for the really postive lines and quotes. Powerful satuff.
JT, You asked about the difference between addiction and dependancy.
As much as possible, I try not to get focused on whether I was addicted to or simply dependant on tramadol. There are no good or bad guys or gals here. It's not a moral problem...it's just a chemical problem. It doesn't matter whether you order your drug through a local pharmacy or over the internet. It doesn't even matter WHY you began taking this stuff. If someone feels better about calling themselves "dependant" rather than "addicted", I surely wouldn't argue with such person. The point is not what we call ourselves, but what we are willing to do about it.
Check out a clinical distintion I found on one website if you wish though, http://www.anxietyzone.com/index.php?article=13289.0
Here is what I know: Over time on this drug, we develop a tolerance to the drug which requires more and more of the drug to do less and less for us. Some may disagree, but I don't personally believe that tramadol is suitable as a long term maintenance pain medication for chronic pain. Most long term users find that they will either begin to feel withdrawal symptoms (if they stay t the same dose) or they will need to increase their dose to compensate for tolerance.
I don't believe that most of us continued taking this to feel a high. All I wanted to feel in the end was to feel not unwell. All I wanted was not to feel what I came to understand were withdrawal symptoms whenever I fed my body less T than it screamed at me to take.
JT, a day or so ago, you said, " I only took this medication for two full months (January and February, I believe you said) and wasn't taking 20 pills/day for 5 years as some of you have and I'm still suffering like this and worse than some of you major abusers. How is this so? I'm worried I have permanent brain damage from this poison". JT, I recall that you first arrived here about ONE YEAR ago the first time raising similar questions and concerns about your tramadol use.
I don't know how long you have been taking this rat poison, whether you want to stop, how many you take, whether you are a "major abuser", or whether you are addicted or simply dependant on the drug. The only question that really matters is this, "do the negatves for your taking this drug over time outweigh the pluses you preceive you derive from using the drug" or not? If not, do you want to stop using the drug? Hey, I know that for six years I didn't want to stop, so I get that not wanting to stop stuff. In my case, it wasn't actually that I didn'twant to stop, but rather it was that I didn't know HOW or that it was even possible.
Nobody here will attempt to dissuade you from taking this drug as long as you want/need to or keep you from taking any dose you wish. When you do decide you want to quit more than anything else in the world, come back and we will be here to walk you through your journey. Sincere best wishes JT. My heart does out to you.
Tramadon't - I was so happy to read that you had a good night sleep last night. I am jealous - nine hours?! And congratulations on your determination. Remember - you know have an investment that you and only you can control.
Good morning everyone...I slept pretty good for being 72+ hours in cold turkey w/d(but whose counting right)Today is day 4 and im okay for now. not great nor did I expect to be these first few days. Thanks everyone who has posted such good and informative and motivating things,This place has helped me so much. I look forward to the day i can dole out advise to people just quitting this stuff. the longer Im off this stuff the more I see how acute my condition was while I was using,I never let myself go into even mild w/d while using,I would take em 4 or 6 at a time 24 hours a day,and that includes waking up in the middle of the night to pop 6. so I am grateful I am doing as well as I am here on day 4...I wish everyone luck and love and healing today!
Fred, you are correct...I first visited here about a year ago. What memory! At that time I also took it for the two months of January and February and found this site after concern about the drug. What I read here frightened me and I quit taking it but had hardly any WD symptoms. But...this time it's horrible so I don't get it.
I though I would do an experiment and take it during these two first months of the year because that's when my pain is worse and...to tell you the truth...it's the most depressing two months of the year for me, with Winter blues and all and wow...I'll just take these here little white devils and cruise right through until Spring...lol. Instead of hibernating like a bear all Winter I'll just make my brain think it's Spring and barrel right through.
Well...the experiment is finished and my two months of being souped and happy all the time is not worth pay time at the end. From my calculation...each month on the tram train equals one week of flu+hangover+nosleep when you leave the train. That's not very good tradeoff. Thanks for your support!
Hey all! My entire town has been without power for almost a week so I've had no access to internet except from my iPhone when I'm in an area with wireless reception. I can't read all the posts from this tiny thing but I will when we get power back. It's been crazy, no work, no schools are open, trees and wires down on every road. Have been camping out in my own home- no water or electricity for almost a week! I'm just happy I'm not in withdrawal anymore or this whole week would have been unbearable!!!
I just wanted to check in and let you all know that Im doing well. Tramadol free since Jan. 13th and med free since March 2nd. I'm finally feeling back to my old self. Some days are hard but I'm managing so much better. I have much more self awareness now.
I am always thinking of my friends on this site, old and new. I want to help those who are struggling just as so many here have helped me through some of my worst days. I have so much appreciation and gratitude for those who have been my lifelines on here. I will always be grateful.
For those on acute withdrawal: it does get better. You CAN do this. Everyone here is pulling for you.
JT I know what you mean!!! I have been taking these things off/on since 2007. And even then I NEVER took as needed,I would get 60 and take then even in those early days all in 4 days. and when I stoped no withdrawels at all, then I would wait 3 weeks to get the refill and do the same,I know over time My body got use to it. I expierienced My first w/d xmas of 2008. when I went on a binge of about 400 pills in 6 weeks. That was the first time I took it constant ever. and went through 2 weeks of bad withdrawels. and since then I stopped for a few months,but this past december I got burned and the dr,gave me basically an unlimited supply And I took them constant for the last 3 months so of course I should be in bad withdrawel now.
Bodegirl, A week without power? that stinks,I feel for you girl! thanks for the words of encourgement.
I just wanted to add something else crazy about this poison... When I would be in acute withdrawel for 2 or 3 days,and then finally figure out a way to get my refill early,I would take 8 or so and within an hour I would feel peace calm warmness, you all know the feeling,but then over the next few days of my binge I would be chasing that feeling the first dose gave me,but it never came. Honestly this at that point I would get so mad because all I felt was jitters and wanting to withdrawel from "life" and go to my room, I chased and chased that feeling that first dose gave me. WHen I was taking 30 a day all I felt was irritability and the constant counting and re counting..it is total madness!
I think most drug addictions are like that. You start out taking it to feel 'good,' and end up taking it not to feel bad! With tramadol you're told it will be easy to go off them, then are shocked when you realize you're experiencing withdrawal. Then you google 'tramadol withdrawal,' and find this site, only to learn you're not alone.
Just wanted to post to all of the folks struggling right now...... some positive points.......
"What a long strange trip its been"
I'm on day 35 free of Tramadol......feeling muuuuuch better now! Ive noticed my mind is clearer, my moods have stabilized, and the withdrawls have all but gone. Some nights my sleep is still a little sketchy, but its getting so much better. I "Feel" now......I'm no longer a medicated "drone" manipulating my moods and my life with the evil T. I can tell you that was the most difficult thing I have ever gone through. I was just praying for time to go by so I could just start to feel a little normal again.....after so many years on the drug, I can honestly say I had lost myself. I forgot what normal was like for me....scary. To all of you going through the struggle.....there is light at the end of the tunnel....very bright light! Hang tough, don't give in....if you stumble, pick yourself up; dust yourself off and get back after it. You will be better, stronger, and happier.
Day 4 cold turkey if almost over thanks goodness,today no doubt has been the hardest physically. every day gets worse and worse physically hopefully soon the withdrawel will calm down. I hope everyone has a peaceful night and hang tough because this is the hardest stuff to get off of!!!
Hey everyone! Hope this finds you guys doing well! I am on day..........12? I think. Things are going well here except for sleep. YUCK! I am probably getting about 5 or 6 hours, but it is split up into sections. When I wake up during the night, I feel like I am never going to get back to sleep, but I do at some point. It is maddening, but I know it will get better as long as I don't take another pill!
Love and hugs to everyone fighting the devil drug!
Tramhater, yes, it does get better and better. Congrats on 12 days.
Tramadont, I am liking that screen name you selected! It makes me crack up every time I see it!
JT, thanks for clarifying. We are here with you, pulling for you.
Bodegirl, no power for a week? How the hell are you making coffee over a fire? No water either?
I will never forget a winter one year twenty years ago when I was living near a lake near Bellingham, Wa. We were pulling our water from the lake but things got so cold that Winter that the lake as well as our water line froze for more than two weeks. I chipped a hole in the lake and would haul five gallon bukcets of water up the hill to our house so we coudl get by. Bode, you learn what water needs are the ESSENTIALS, huh?
Let's take a break and try to LAUGH at ourselves for a change. Has anyone got any homerous "pill counting" stories to tell?
ive eventually ran out of tramadol, i havent had any for 2 days, i feel like **** to put it bluntly, ive no energy wotsoever, im finding this extremely difficult and keep crying, how sad am i? ive no-one to talk to about this and its driving me mad, i couldnt sleep at all last night it was awful, ive 4 children to get sorted out and have to pretend that everything is awful, my husband definately wouldnt understand if i told him, and i cant tell a friend as i feel i dont trust people. I am finding this really hard, my whole body is aching i have took ibupfren and immodium to try and help with withdrawl but to be honest nothing is working, its constantly in my head, in big capital letters from the minute i open my eyes till i eventually fall asleep TRAMADOL, god what i wouldnt give just to have 2 tabs now to make me feel normal, i hate feeling like this, im not a very strong person and i hate HATE HATE the way that tramadol has took over my life, how did i get to this point???
i just want to be normal. I love my kids with all my heart they are my world and its soooo hard coping and trying to act normal as if nothings wrong around them, I am meant to be taking my eldest out this evening to a concert it was planned months ago, how am i gonna do this??? i could cry just thinking about it, i cant get motivated to do anything. I cant let her down and im panicking about this evening, i have a fuzzy feeling in my head and my body just feels so weak, god help anyone that is feeling the way that i am right now, my heart goes out to you all
Well day 5 cold turkey! ugh what did I dream about last night and the night before? pills!! I am the very definition of an addict.
Bev I know what you are going through cause I am too. what has helped me more than anything is to not ask what got me here for right now,just accept I am to that point and if I ever want to get better I have to endure this painstaking grueling hell if I EVER want to get back to the old me. its not easy its, hard as anything I have ever done and I have done alot of hard things in my life. I have had to struggle with a zillion questions about myself in these past 5 days,like what brought me to this point,how did I let it get that far etc.. but I have to chase those thoughts away because its too stressful in an already stressful time. I hope you find peace anyways you can,just take thought in knowing every minute without pills is a minute closer to feeling like your old self again.
JT - I don't think I could answer you question about addiction better than Fred did, but your comments did make me think of one thing: There's the physical addiction - the wreching, aching, nervous, flu like symptoms....and then there's the psychological addiction which you described as sitting out on the front porch waiting for the Fed Ex guy, etc. I think it is possible to have one without the other, but I think most people here have both. You started with a legitimate condition and prescription and then got slammed by the physical withdrawals. But then in a subsequent post you mentioned being "souped up and happy" so maybe there's a psycholgical component there, too. I guess it's up to us whether we want to call ourselves an "addict" or not. As for me, they could put my picture in the dictionary next to the word addict I'm such a clear cut case.
Bode I'm so sorry as your fellow Conn. girl that you're going through all that! We, up here in the north, up on a mountain, have been blissfully unaware of your struggles. I am SO proud of your Sub taper and the fact that you are still here sharing your experience, strength and hope. You have inspired me to start posting again.
Bev - I feel for you. I went through this with 2 kids that I tried to act "normal" in front of. I know it's hard but in the long run you are going to be so much better for them when you are free of the poison. Keep posting here and we will be here to support you. As for tonight if you had the "flu" would your husband take her? A lot of people came here saying they couldn't tell anyone, but many eventually did and were much better off for it. Maybe even tell a doctor? I will pray for you.
Hello Fellow Warriors-
Nice Work getting through those first few days....it is a rough go but IT WILL NOT KILL YOU...and continued use of Tramadol just might....at the very least it leeches everything meaningful from life. It is a bondage...a parasite and it's not going to leave without a fight. I would just think of all my little cells having a tantrum cause there is no drug to ply their receptors....it's like ripping away a beloved security blanket from a child...both physically and psychologically....I began to attribute all of my ability to cope and succeed to the drug...nothing was really MINE anymore....
IT GETS BETTER....eventually things calm down. Be Kind and patient with yourself....I tried to treat myself as I would one of my children who was struggling with some big issue or illness. Tenderness and compassion are key. Hey...you are doing some powerful work in your lives right now....something to be proud of. You came to recognize this problem...you took the time you needed to really let it get your attention and now you are actively FREEING yourselves from this madness
I found that I needed to get some help with the subsequent anxiety and depression that ramped up for me around about day 10...I think of the first few days of holy heck as the w/d from the opiate part of tramadol and the next several weeks as the w/d from the effexor antidepressant component of tramadol....it takes awhile and the help I got from starting a mood stabilizer from a psychiatrist made a big difference....everyone has a different need here and your experience out from those first 5 days may very well be different than mine...BUT I would encourage anyone out there struggling with depression and anxiety lingering around to get as much help as you need......nice to know there is plenty out there...as well as unconditional love and acceptance here
I have several weeks free now and things get better and better.....keep going!
all is well
you are Loved
4leef,great words of encouragement! I at the end of day5,and it was not quite as bad as day 4.that onw was not pretty. I cant wait for the W/D to end though it must be coming soon,I dont think I have been this long without tram since 4 months ago before I started this last 3 month binge. I just cold allll the time. I seem to have energy I just cant focus on anything. its really wierd,but Im glad I have at least 5 days under my belt,someone please tell me the w/d will end soon!
Lilly, It is so great to hear from you and know that you are doing alright. (hugs)
4leef and Chess, I do appreciate and soak up your words of gold fitly spoken. I do hope you each will keep on returning for months/years. We need your voice here.
Tramadon't - Way to go with five days! You are doing so fabulously and yup, the acute withdrawal sympoms should start easing off. I think you mentioned that today seemed better than yesterday?
Our bodies are marvelous and wonderful things but I sure don't understand them much. Most people say that coming out of where you stand, improvement may be two days better and blam, a day of set backs. Don't be shocked if that happens.
There WERE a couple of silly symptoms at about five days out. I recall being very emotional at about day 5. I cried at the rocks. It sounds silly now. I guess my emotions had been bottled up for more than six years. I thought, "so this is living life on life's terms, huh?" I also expereinced unusual uncontrollable sneezing as I was coming out of the tramadol hold. I went back to work as a lawyer on day seven and YES tramadon't, the lack of focus I had was horrible.
I was like that for "weeks and weeks". Lack of concentration and focus. Unable to make decisons. Work piled up. I was basically a pretty butt in a chair for a few more weeks there. I could yak and read email, but I was unable to pull the pin, move issues forward, and still very much in a fog for weeks after ward.
I would have preferred that tramadol left me suddenly at the five day mark and that I could report no ongoing symptoms. But yeah, it doestake weeks and weeks for this horrible drug to be entirely OUT.
When you think about it, many of us surely did allow tramadol to have it's way with us. I for one - swallowed tramadol with wreckless abandon for a very long long time. I suppose it's fair that we give the demon drug time to let loose of us entirely.
Bev, I am so sorry you are feeling the way that you are. The only encouragement I could offer is that withdrawal won't last forever. It was unclear whether you plan to stay free of this drug or are just waiting for another rx? I so TOTALLY understand the feeling of simply having to go back on the drug - as much as we hate it. So if you just needed a pick up until your next rx arrives, draw close, keep reading and know that you are loved. If you have decided to make this withdrawal - your last (hopefully), we will support you with that as well.
An old timer in AA used to say that "the secret to AA is knowing that we are defensless against that first drink.": I think that could be said about tramadol as well. Cause I am pretty sure that even after being free of this drug for 16 months, if I were to take 1-2 trams tonight, I'd be begging, borrowing and stealing TRAMADOL tonight and you'd probably not hear from me again for a long long time. That is how defenseless I consider myself against taking that first pill again.
As I age, I realize that the things I do today, really will impact my health tomorrow. When I was 20, I figured I was bullit proof. I could consume any drug I wanted to take and I was invinceable - bullit proof, too young to be have anything I did implicate my later day health.
Today I am fairly sure that I have another drunk or drugged up state left in me. I'm hard wired to go there. I just can't allow it to happen. Because at this point in my life, what I don't know is whether I have another QUIT left in me.
It's really no big deal I suppose...
It's just a matter of life or death..
Grab hold you weary pilgrams. There is life after tramadol.
just wanted to check in and give & take a little advice....i came clean with my doc on monday, and he pretty much told me my addiction to tramadol was all in my head. he compared coming off tramadol to quitting smoking. its really sad/pathetic that there are still a ton of doctors out there who don't know s**t about tramadol, or even that it is addictive.
yesterday was my first full day without a pill. i was doing a pretty rapid taper, basically taking 1 less pill every day. i know for some that may not work, but i think it was the best decision for me because i knew that i'm now in the right mindset to get off tramadol. if i had done a slow taper, all it would have taken is one little slip-up and i would have been back to square one.
getting sleep has been my biggest problem the last few days. physically i'm exhausted but still can't seem to sleep. very frustrating.
advice i have to other people coming off this stuff is you NEED to get some exercise. i know for some of you that may sound impossible, but you need to force yourself to do it. it has worked wonders for me. best of luck to you all.
Good morning everyone! its day 6 cold self turkey and I did sleep pretty good last night,in the past when I quit sleep was impossible but other than night 1,I have slept pretty good and I am sure that has had an impact on how I have had the willpower to cope during the days,and yes TY I have forced myself to go walking everyday maybe that is the difference this time.today I dont feel dead like I did the first 5.but im still freezing,Im also taking one a day for men,with alot of vitamins that may also be making a big difference too. the only thing is im still obsessed with the pills and that my friends is my biggest fear because I was like that with alchohol,I never classified myself as a drunk,all through college I drank on the weekends,,never more but when I did drink I drank to the point of black out. and all during the week all I could think about was waiting for the weekend. I know that the pills I can never take agian,so I just dont want to spend each and every day of my life obsessing and craving those things!
I guess I should just take it one day at a time,and so far today im pretty good! and Fred thanks for your advice,it makes me feel less crazy for tearing up at the least thing.and yes I have been doing that too.lol Hope everyone has a great day!
HI Everyone..It's been a bit since I've posted but really feel the need to check in as im needing some support...Unlike many of you Im tapering..went from 5-6 pills a day now down to 2 a day...for next couple weeks. it seems to be working for me..i will say that the first day i went to 2..i had a lot of anxiety and depression, breathing issues...chest heaviness..muddled brain.. Im on an AD ..dont think it's kicked in too much and occasional xanax for the anxiety...it seems the conventional wisdom out here is get off as quickly as you can. maybe i should be doing that..have a lot of fear around it..but in past 2 months of taper..i have not exceeded or backtracked ..and gradually lowering..I have a lot of business travel coming up in next 3-4 weeks and i need to be somewhat functional. by time im done with my last trip should be completely off the crap.. Im working with a therapist..who is reminding me to be kind and gentle to myself during this process..the self-hated & criticism is a set up to get back to more numbing with the trams. but this week has been hard..I had root canal yesterday...she did not recommend pain meds only tylenol & ibuphrphen...YAY...im agitated with my family..i know they wonder what's going on but i just can't put this on them now...the sleep is starting to be slightly disrupted...and i cannot make a decision to save my life...it's awful...
I want to acknowledge all of you continueing to post..and tell you that i get so much comfort .
Frank..I am encouraged by you comment about having your mind become clearer...and congratulations for 35 days fee..I also relate to your comment about being lost..and what will that look like when you find yourself again..
Bode Girl...no power..that's hard stuff...but how awesome you are to be tram free since 1/13...thanks for your always uplifting and encouraging posts
"need to quit" Welcome ...you are definitely in the right place..no exaggeration..this forum is saving me..the folks out here are incredibly articulate and supportive ..and informed about the perils of tramadol..im sure you will find a lot you can relate to
Tramahater - CONGRATS ON 12 DAYS...no small accomplishment
Bev - God bless you ..i cannot imagine what you are dealing with while having to care for 4 children...but look at the strength it took for you to come out here and post your feelings..hang on to that strength...and ask for help..we are all here for you.
Lillyval - Thank you so much for your encouraging words...you appear to be a "seasoned" warrior ...im hoping someday to be there as well
Tramadont - Congratulations to you...I truly relate to lack of focus...all i do is shuffle papers around on my desk..and try to appear busy..completely indecisive...and basically lost... You are doing an awesome job!
Fred - as usual..I get so much peace from your posts...your wisdom and "bent" on this addictive stuff is really valuable for me..as I've dabbled with 12 step and presently considering going back.. Thank you from my heart.
Ty - congrats and thanks for the reminder about exercise..i have not done that and it can only help...
Ken...Did you have your root canal? Hope you are donig good.
Fmn & Susan..miss your guys a lot...
To all the warriors out here reading and posting..again.. this forum is changing/saving lives...I have absolutely no doubt about that. Thank you all for being here..for your support...for the love...and kindess..and for the reality you bring to the table.
Remember this is a ":no shame" zone.. we can be honest and know there is no judgement...
Wishing you all peace, courage, love, ...
Gratefully taking one day at a time,
Pat- You are doing awesome. I know and understand the depression and anxiety and being some what agitated. I have read all of your posts and have been lifted time and time again. Taking the time to get off this stuff is ok. Whatever works. The fact that your loving yourself and being kind to yourself while going through this battle is great. Your a great example to me. Thank you for being here.
Ty - I so identify about your trip to the doc. My original doc who gave me the unlimited tramadol scripts denies to this day that tram has any withdrawal effects. I have been seeing another doc for my addiction and even he said on my first visit "that stuff's pretty weak isn't it?". Luckily he did agree to treat me, and I have been off the poison for 5 months now.
For anyone out there who has been trying and failing for months to get off tram I would recommend seeking addiction treatment - even if you have to insist, like many of us here, that tram is a "real" addictive drug. I know lots of people here have gotten free by themselves, or with support at home, or with 12 step programs - but if you've tried everything: tapering, going ct, medications, remedies, etc. - and you just keep relapsing PLEASE seek some help. I am so, so grateful I finally did.
A note on tapering... I found by personal experience and having read hundreds of post here over the months, most people can taper down relatively easily from high doses to 100mg/day. For some reason that seems to be the threshold. Once you get below 100mg you pretty much go into withrawal in between each dose, and tapering down to lower doses seems to just prolong the agony. I know this isn't true of everybody, and I've seen a couple of people taper down to miniscule doses successfully. But for many coming off of very high doses, 100mg seems to be the "jumping off point".
I have been off tramadol since December. My mom died at 2:41 this morning. I watched her take her last breath. She was and is the greatest woman I have ever known. She died from a brain tumor and I'm sitting here and can't believe she's gone. My husband got the kids off to school this morning and is being so supportive but I'm actually sitting here wishing for the first time for 2 tramadols. I have not wanted any since December. Oh God!! I'm going off to cry!!!!
Petunia..i cannot believe that you had the encouraging words for me above while going thru this amazing pain...i am so sorry dear...so sorry... I can't say that if I were in your place that I would want just what you are wanting..please let me know any of us know how we can help you... crying..feeling that pain..and grieving without the tramadol....that is a big order...You have a lot of courage...and this is huge...go easy on yourself.. cry many tears..there are others out here who may be going thru similar losses who can help...my heart is hurting for you.
sending peace, love and hugs.
Oh, Petunia. I am so, so sorry. Words fail. My heart aches for you.
It is a season of loss among our warrior clan.
Yesterday I had my 14-year old Shih-tsu put to sleep. Her long and brave fight with cancer is done. She is free.
Once again, my heart is broken. Just as it was when my 15-year old cat, Sara, died, when loved ones have died, when I found out Cindy was sick, and when I realized there was nothing more that could be done. This world has never seen a shortage of broken hearts, and it never will. That is no consolation, of course. My pain is the pain of every person who has ever lost something or someone beloved. It is the pain of every person who has had to make that easiest decision with the most suffocating certainty. The pain of everyone who has loved something and watched it suffer the consequences of nature's laws. I know my pain is not original. It's nothing noteworthy. Yet it rips me down the middle into rough halves, unequal and jagged, paper-thin in invisible tornadoes of grief and torrential tears that fall one by one, instead of in sheets and waves, as I wish they could.
The decision was easy. I held her and talked to her throughout the process, wanting my voice to be the last thing she heard as she was set free from her sick little body. Now I look at photographs of her when she was healthy, running and playing and sleeping in the prime of her life, and it seems almost like a different dog. The one I buried yesterday under the rose arbor feels like the real Cindy. That is why I know I am not thinking clearly. I know better, but it doesn't change the way I feel right now.
I read something recently, even mentioned it here, about grief having two equal components, one being the acceptance of what we have lost, the other being the acceptance of what we now have in its place. Of what remains. I always get the first part pretty easily. It's the second that I never seem to ever arrive at.
What remains where she was is just emptiness. The memories are not what remains. They are just what I remember of my years with her. The memories have nothing to do with what remains. It isn't the dog bed that still has her toys in it. It isn't any of the souvenirs I have of her life, long and good as it was. It isn't anything, because it is just the opposite. Because I have lost her, what I now have in her place is exactly nothing. It's the void. How does a human being ever accept a void? This is what I can't understand.
The nightmares I had about what it would be like to give her up didn't come true. They were based only on fear, and they didn't materialize, even though I nearly fainted a couple of times because events unfolded in reality exactly as they did in the dream during the beginning. Right down to the girl who came in to place the IV. I haven't slept in days, and of course, that didn't help matters. When it was time to let her go, it was amazingly peaceful and gentle. And I did what I needed to do, which was hold her and talk to her until she was gone. She was brave until the end, just as I knew she would be. She did what living things do. She fought to live until something made it impossible for her to keep fighting. Until something stronger came along. And she gave up with grace.
Accepting what remains. I just don't get it, and I may never get it. I can't accept emptiness. I have never done it and don't know how to do it now. My instinct is to try to fill it up, and I will exhaust myself trying and failing.
Time doesn't heal pain. The forces that push us to survive also allow us to grow around the pain, just like a tree will grow around a stone, all the way around it sometimes. The stone never becomes part of the tree, though. The two will always remain what they were. It is just the way of things.
They coexist because they must. Because the universe put them in the same place and they shared that space, either by choice or by necessity.
The universe put Cindy and me in the same place twelve years ago. She was a shelter dog on her way to death all those years ago. It wasn't her time. I was a girl who needed to learn about unconditional love. It was my time.
Through the years, I grew around her. Or she grew around me. One of us was all but enveloped by the other, until we were nearly inseparable. Nearly.
The tearing apart leaves both changed forever. It always does.
I am thankful to God for both the tree and the stone, even though cutting one from the other leaves both with enduring scars. The skin will grow back thinly, and eventually, the pain will age from razor sharp and thin to the dull, rounded ache of hearts that have seen many seasons come and go.
Fmn..through your pain comes the most exquisite presentation of love, life and loss...absolutey beautiful, haunting, sad, poetic...left me breathless...To say Im sorry seems very small in the magnitude of what you are feeling..but know that I am sorry......Thank you for intimacy of your share.
Peace & love to you sister.
FMN...I remember crying when a stray cat whom I adopted passed. Before being put to sleep, she came to me (maybe to tell me 'thank you and goodbye') one day while I was on my back working on the water heater under the house and laid down on my chest. I knew she was sick, so I stayed there for quite awhile and petted her. When I took her to the vet, it was discovered she had advanced feline leukemia.
Petunia, I am profoundly sorry for the loss of the greatest woman in your world, your mom. Sending comfort you way as you remember better days with your mother.
Even though we may have warning of the end - there really is NO way to prepare for the hole that is left after a human soul of a four legged variety leaves that place they have occupied.
FMN your post touched me so. We lost two life companion kittehs in eight months last year. I still have my dear Kiggy's 8 x 10 picture at my computer. And I still do grieve for the place she held in our hearts until last May.
No, I am not a big believer in that phrase, "time heals all wounds". That and ever other suggestion that it can will be OK after we say goodbye to a human loved one or a four legged friend falls so short at a time like this.
The beginnings in life seem so much grander than the endings. We imagine the beginnings will be with us forever or so we behave. As we take puppy crewing behavior and kitten craziness for granted or even worse - for scolding.
Time itself seems our enemy. I so regret the days I wasted in an emotional fog. Though painful, I would much rather feel love and loss than to fog all emotions out and pretend that they do not exist.
I interupted this post to lay down beside little my boy cat just now. This evening and the hurt expressed here reminds me of the brevity of life. Every force of nature seems to move us all and everyone we hold as dear...toward the end.
Too soon, the puppy chewing and kitten scraching turns to quiet long naps. With much more napping andblankets in the end than either crewing or scratching. And as activity slows, as maturity and wisdom sweep over both animals and humans alike - then yet just a little while more and life passes the tipping point. And our souls cry out for the former years of chewing and scratching of so long ago.
No FMN and Petunia, there is no filling the emptiness that was so elequently described by you, FMN. I derived alsolutely no comfort from "the rainbow bridge". What I did find a small measure of comfort in eventually was in my own private writing. Alot. I still have the 36 page life biography of Kiggy that I take out and polish up once in a while. It will never serve any purpose except to memorialize my own sweet girl for my own comfort and ease. And that is fine with me.
We are the composite of all experiences and loves we have had the good fortune to know while on this planet. I can read in your writings how Cindy blessed you FMN. I am so utterly sorry for your loss FMN. You have me using up both ends of the tissue box tonight.
FMN, go to my profile page and check out the pet memorial I was motivated to create last summer. Like most of what we do in grief, it served no earthly purpose other than as an outlet for my grieving. Sometimes the best we can do is put one foot in front of the other. Because indeed, there is no filling the emptiness brought by loss. You will also see a photo of my new baby kitten girls there on my profile page. I didn't plan it this way...
But six months after our Kiggy died, we came to adopt two six month old tuxedo kittens...who are scratching and clawing like new kittens do.
And it turns out - they were born on the same day our Kiggy left this earth.
hey emily i need help getting off the tramadol im 22 year old male and ive been taking them since i was 19...and not for pain basically cause they make me happier person but not so much anymore i feel like a junkie and i never thouhght it would come to this and now my dads and little brother is addicted to them cause my grandma get a 120 every 2 weeks and she dont really take them i do and my brother and dad does i dk what to do i just wish they never existed
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