Addiction: Social Community
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642313 tn?1244071722

A Theory??? Addiction Recovery and this Website

I have a theory.  Now hear me out and don't get me wrong.  First I wanna say that if it wasn't for this website and specifically, if it wasn't for certain members here, I don't think I would have made it to my Day (7).  Really, I woulda broke down out of sheer duty to work and family with a:

                               "I have to function, I'll just wait till a time with less stress in my life."

But No.

You folks (and one person in particular): (1) Underscored how really bad this stuff is (2) the cold sober truth that it can be done but that it sure as hek won't be easy (3) I am not alone (4) the longer I wait the harder it will be (5) life gets better

Now here's the rub.

What if obsessing over the problem by daily visits and posts here on this site well after a reasonable withdrawal period, what if co-miserating with others in similar circumstances merely reinforces a psychosomatic feedback loop and thereby exacerbates the perception of symptoms that wouldn't be there if you just stopped thinking about it so much.  If you expect to be miserable and in pain you will be.

Its been been 7 days for me, and its still not great, but hey I can't complain.  I feel Okay?!?.  The mind is a powerful tool.  It can be used for or against you.  But if every day we wake up we start here on this site, we reprogram our mind to expect pain and misery or at least the dull malaise and if every night before we go to bed we do it again (by visiting this site) aren't we merely reinforcing expectations?

What if as an experiment, we decided to convince ourselves that we are healed and healed completely.  That we are normal.  What if we swore off the site for three days.  It would be easier for me cuz except for one or two of you I haven't really bonded with anyone.

I just want your thoughts on this, I'm not asking you folks to quit corresponding with me.  Frankly I kinda look forward to hearing from you guys n gals each day but think about this.
Let me reiterate that I am so grateful for find this place on the web.  But food for thought.  Now go think happy and healthy!
32 Responses
521742 tn?1255107015
I understand what you are saying and this is a topic that has been mentioned before. I guess for some its easier to stay away but having a support system of some sort is so important to recovery. Helping others to get through it is my biggest reason for coming back. I felt so alone and had no where to turn when I was stuck in the quicksand of addiction I want others to know they have options.
Avatar universal
I think it's all in how you look at it. I do not find for me personally that this site makes it harder.and in fact, when I have felt very weak and had the thoughts of using again creep back into my mind..the friends I have made here have reminded me why I need to keep going.I have been here for 10 months and besides meeting some very good people..I have been also able to help and give back. However, I do not think that staying on this site is good for everybody. Some need to get through whatever it is they need to get through and be done with it and for others ..well, we simply feel the need to give back and help people like we were helped. I have battled drugs for so long that somehow I feel like my suffering wasn't all in vain because I understand what people are going through . I also think though that some people may leave a bit too realy thinking that they have it beat only to relapse and end back here. There is much encouragement here and the times when the cravings hit etc..seem to be the worst when we least expect it and think we have it under control...
563594 tn?1309583132
when I started on this site I was taking up to 20 norcos a day. This site made me have panic attacks worse than I'd had in years...then I started tapering...panicked even more, daily... then cold turkey with the help of people here convincing me I'd be ok, I'd live and thats all I cared about. :) Here I am...55 days later!! I feel SO much better, and I know this site made me scared and panicked at first but in the grand scheme of things, saved my LIFE. So, I agree with you, and disagree...lol. :) good post...
563594 tn?1309583132
ah, and YES the mind is a powerful tool. I know it made my w/d's less miserable for me. I know I'm still a little messed up mentally, but you just keep telling yourself~ TIME HEALS ALL.
642313 tn?1244071722
I just sent a message to someone and I wanted to post it here.  I have read your responses to my query inititating this thread and here's a follow-up.

If you make your "disease" the center of your world, your primary vocation or preoccupation, it will consume you!!!!  In fact calling it a disease, I think is part of the problem!!!!!!!  Look Iused to rock climb without rope and jump off cliffs into Lake Meade.  It was pretty stupid!  Once I hurt myself really bad.  But when my daughter was born I stopped all the risky sophomoric macho ****.  Some might same that my risk-taking behavior was genetic, a predisposition toward such activity, dare say I,... a "disease".  Bull!!!!  It was just stupidity.  So too was taking pills.  Not a disease, just stupidity.  But if I pretend its a disease that does two things: (1) it legitimizes the behavior and transfers culpability from me to the fates (genetics, bad luck, free radicals); and (2) it allows me to linger on the problem leading me to believe that I must live under its shadow for the rest of my life.  I say walk away from it all.  Turn your back on yesterday's problem and attack the rest of your life with a vengeance!!!!!  learn from your mistakes yes,  but don't let those mistakes consume you.  If this website and others like it keep you chained to that disease mentality keep you in the clutches of "I have a problem and its name is "Prescription Meds"", believe, me you will have a problem!!!!!

But then again, this site did help me conquer MY withdrawal period!  But has it helped me conquer the problem?  Heck, its only been 7 days for me!  I might not even know what the hell I am talking about!

That's why I am so curious about some of you with a hell of a lot more clean time under your belt.  Tell me what do YOU think???

642313 tn?1244071722
Some of you are absolutely indispensable to a site like this.  Those of you with firsthand experience and common sense advice and genuine empathy.  I too empathize with the desire you have to help others!!!!!!!!!  I feel like that too.  It is compelling to know that you might be able to help someone here.  You folks helped me!!!!  Now imagine if everyone took my advice and logged off for good!  When I first signed on there would have been no one there to help me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So at best, I am a walking (and posting) contradiction.

Avatar universal
Dont be sorry.  Your thinking.  Speaking.  Nothing is wrong with that.  You know I want nothing but healing for you.. but I have to respectfully disagree with this not being a disease.. And Im just realizing it is.  If it wasnt and it was just a matter of going through a phase or acting stupid none of us would really be here.. I am sure for a very small percentage of people it is.  I know people who have used, here and there, throughout their lives but are not addicts.  But for most of us, with long long histories of abuse its been a constant jump on the train, jump off, back on, back off.  I would LOVE to think to myself that this is over and Im fine now.. but I know from my past, and again, I am just realizing this, that it doesnt work that way.  Every time I have quit drugs I always get through the bad part - the withdrawal, the physical stuff... and just when life gets good and I feel great and normal, that's when I think to myself Ah, one pill wont hurt, I do have a headache.  Or Its just one Saturday, whats a bump of cocaine going to really do.. And then it begins again and here I am for the first time in a very long illustrious relationship with drugs realizing all of this for the first time.  Non addicts will take their meds only if they need them and not think about it afterwards.  I will not.  I hate realizing I am an addict but its the only thing that I am positive is true right now.  Black and white with no gray area.  Like many people I am sure, I have been doing one drug or another since I am 16 years old.. thats not a stupid decision, thats an addiction.  All my best wishes to you.. you know I got nothin but love..  
Avatar universal
I absolutely agree with you 150 %.......I can't even elaborate.  I mean 150% says it all.

Excellent Post.  I mean EXCELLENT !!!!!

636538 tn?1223529336
OK Nauty, I'm probably gonna annoy you again with this dictionary entry for "disease," and as you can see, it would not be difficult to apply at least two of the definitions to what people addicted to drugs and/or alcohol go through.

I do think that xru has some very valid points, but until we throroughly understand our brains (and nano-scopic functions of our bodies) and all of the chemical functions and possible abnormalities that may occur in one, I am holding off on saying whether drug addiction is not a disease, obesity is not a disease, alcoholism is not a disease etc.  

Certainly each person has choices to make regarding using, but what genetic, biologic and/or chemical factors predispose one person to abuse and another to simple use?  I don't know and, so far, neither do the scientists studying such things.  yada yada yada......I know.........

Main Entry: dis·ease  
Pronunciation: \di-ˈzēz\
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English disese, from Anglo-French desease, desaise, from des- dis- + eise ease
Date: 14th century
1obsolete : trouble
2: a condition of the living animal or plant body or of one of its parts that impairs normal functioning and is typically manifested by distinguishing signs and symptoms : sickness , malady
3: a harmful development (as in a social institution)
Avatar universal
I take way a lot of flack for this, but ......I don't believe it is a disease, unless proven a fact and not theory........

There.....I said it in all little words.......are you proud of me or just trying to annoying me?

617347 tn?1331293081
for me it's a disease while abusing , not after. I have to adapt myself to the new situation of living clean of pills , but no way i'm feeling in the middle of any disease now.
495284 tn?1333894042
why does everyone have to use such big words??  I had to get out a dictionary for some of them!!!!!

I tend to use the word "addiction" over disease.  Im not sure i really buy the disease thing either.  If you have MS or cancer or something like that that is a disease.  Everything has to have disease at the end of it anymore.  The word is used way to much in my opinion.            sara
642313 tn?1244071722
Look, we as species have evolved, and we are obsessed with compartmentalizing things into neat little boxes in order to make sense of a complicated world we don't really understand completely.  That's a disease,...that is not.  Drug Addiction is no more or no less a disease than cancer or MS or obesity, or risk taking.  In my view, we all start out with a set of genes that define the initial probability(s) for everything.  Then environment comes along and either dampens or enhances the proclivity for behaviors or circumstances.  And then, well stuff happens.  Ya get prostrate cancer or breast cancer or your a risk-taker or a pill popper.  Thing is the very act of living is the slow and subtle progression of a very long disease, namely aging and death.  I didn't start this post to argue whether or not drug addiction is a disease.  I started because whether or not it is or isn't, once you make up your mind to quit, once you've gone through  a reasonable withdrawal period,  You HAVE TO STOP OBSESSING OVER THE PAST AND THE PROBLEM!!!!  We have to stop feeding our brains with input suggesting we still must suffer because Bornagain12 still hurts, I must too,.... because JoeShmo24 is on day 44 and still feels bad so to will I.  I never had anxiety, but on this website I learned that that comes with the  "Sub Package" of post withdrawal and sure enough I now have anxiety!!!!!  How much of it is real and how much of it have I "learned" from you folks????
642313 tn?1244071722
I am going to put money where my mouth is and I am going to leave this website for one week.  For one week I will live without obsessing on my recovery,... on my so-called post-withdrawal symptoms.  I will not feed my brain with reinforcing data and testimony as to the inevitable,.......... written by others.

Take care all who helped me (and you did!).  I will report back in a week.
642313 tn?1244071722
In the interest of full disclosure, I have come back to Med-Help.  In my last post of about a week ago I had reported that I was going try to avoid the sight as an experiment.   I wanted to report that despite some serious effort on my part, the whole mind over matter thing did not work.  Despite my best effort, my symptoms persisted.  then, some good days followed by some bad days....  BUT I am happy to report, that today after 20 days of quitting subs, I finally woke up without that odd queasy weirdness in my stomache that over the day turned into a crescendo of anxiety and restlessness.  The anxiety is mostly gone and the lethargy and listlessness appear to be gone too.  I credit two things for that (1) TIME; and (2) Exercise and I mean all out hardcore exertion exercise, get you blood flowing, get your heart rate up there, get those endorphins kick-started.  Now just in case I did everything else too, I wrote list of so-called secrets that I hoped would help easy withdrawal and expedite recovery.  I suppose some of those things on the list helped too.  

I aplologize if I offended anyone, but I wanted to know for myself what was real and what was suggestion.
617347 tn?1331293081
hey, so you're feeling great, right ?

congrats then. each one of us has to deal and find our way, you didn't offend at all ( not me , sure ) .
642313 tn?1244071722
Yes yesterday I thing I turned a corner and today again I feel good
Avatar universal

a lot of double-talk, but you hit the nail on the head with your post.  I could not heal as long as I was here are reading the daunting outlook of my addiction existence.  When I finally went cold turkey so-to-speak.......I could not even think of looking at the forum, let alone talk to anyone.  Misery does love company, and If I had stayed on the duration.....it would have been much worse.

I am undecided whether this forum was of help to me or not.  Yes, I have met some great and fun internet friends.....I got a grip and understanding as to what was happening to me....I din't understand why everytime I didn't have any pills ...I got this horrible flu?  Well, sometimes not know may be better.  I've heard of doctors literally lying to a patient they know is in narc. withdrawal, say after a surgery, or say an elderly patient that is clueless about addiction and withdrawal, or anyone at that matter......the doctor will just tell them they have a flu and to ride it out a few days, that this sometimes happens after procedures....bla bla.......I believe the patient is better off not knowing.  If the doctor knows its not life threatening then why not.......Stating to the patient that they are in Narcotic withdrawal could make the experience 1000 times worse......get what im saying?.....

So, i guess what I am trying to say is......Yes.  I totally believe that the forum is for informational purposes and not for withdrawal.

176495 tn?1301280412
without doing a great deal of studying and only some brief reading of  xru's original note, I find myself agreeing with Nauty.  Don't get me wrong..a lot of people helped me a great deal with identifying wht I was dealing with and this place provides a great place to share and learn and I look at it more for that than anything else.   I've learned more from this forum about drug addiction (I share Nauty's thoughts re: disease) than I have anywhere else.

642313 tn?1244071722
Thought(s) on my conclusion(s).  About this Site....

Here's the thing, I already knew, that I was addicted to pain killers.  I already knew that withdrawal is real.  What I didn't know was the physiological aftermath of quitting and what to expect.  On Day 4 of my withdrawal, I was crawling outta my skin and writhing in misery and out of desperation I came here.  I learned all kinds of symptom attenuation strategies and all sort of coping mechanisms to minimize the misery.....  I also met people who made it thru very much the same thing I was going thru....  Most importantly I learned certain specifics about my DOC (Subs) of which I was completely ignorant.  This site informed me and I think prepared me for what I was facing and how it might develop.  But on a good day, just after riding a bike for some distance I got to thinking about all this mind over matter stuff and the power of suggestion.  I posted this string.  Then I decided to put my money where my post(s) were and I swore off this site for a week.  I also did everything humanly possible to convince myself I was normal again.  It didn't work.  A week later I go back on to report this result.  Now it appears that about three weeks into withdrawal/recovery,  I am finally starting to feel normal again.  Why???  Quite simply TIME, good nutrition and Exercise, exercise, exercise.  (this is my guess).

This site helped me stick to the fight  just an hour longer, just one more day, just another week.  I sought out two sorts of people, those, in my shoes but more advanced in their recovery, and real success stories, that is folks who are closing in on a year or more clean and happy and healthy!!!  Those folks helped guide me thru my personal fight wirh this thing.  They gave me conviction and courage and hope.  I tried to stay away from people who seemed to wallow in self-pity and recidivist professional quitters who seem to relapse and re-quit.

I will admit that sometimes I found myself feeling bad for folks just coming on to the site like I did and just starting this healing process, and in, or about to enter, withdrawals.  I couldn't resist offering my own a bit derivative insight into making it better.  But mostly, I suppose I was selfish, concerned primarily with me and my needs.  And the conclusion I have formulated from all this is that YES,..... this site is a tool for healing and recovery, it has made my time in that hell somewhat better and overall it makes for a positive difference.
Avatar universal
Whatever works for you or whatever you think might help is well worth the try. However, we are all made up differently, what works for some may not work for others. Recovery is not a walk down a straight path. It is a complexity of trial and error. Where some are able to walk ahead steadilly others may have to crawl. You may be able to jump over the first hurdle or more but as you go forward the hill you are climbing seems to grow higher and higher. Your sense of purpose, your will to succeed, your inner strength all have to take hold and you must make every use of them to propel yourself forward. If you fall or stumble, don't quit, just remember you got that far so why not another day and another and another. Ninety nine percent of the people here will give you support as much as they can. That is good but the reality is that you and you alone must make that journey and you have the final say on how far you can go. When you stumble reach out, there will always be someone here who will hear your call and will be there for you but that is all. This may sound a little trite, even childish but they are actually very big words and every addict should stand by it when they start withdrawal. The owrds come from a children's story about a little train and the words are, "I think I can, I think I can." Just change the word "Think," to the word ,"Know," and you have the words,"I know I can," and then put them to use.
563594 tn?1309583132
I'll admit that this place scared the h3ll out of me at first. I knew about w/d's already, didn't know so much a PAWS, and I for SURE didn't know a darned thing about Xanax, and other benzos. When I was on here still addicted to painkillers, I was a panicked mess every day, to the point where my fiance didn't want me coming on here anymore. I stayed and made it through that. Now facing the Xanax taper, which has been even more miserable than the vicodin withdrawals... of course I'm sure the PAWS is kicking in with me also, being at 70 days clean from vicodin today. I'm very thankful for all the wonderful people I've met and who have helped me through this mess I've been in for so long. Heres to hoping the rest of this xanax taper can go as smoothly as possible and I'm going to for sure quit reading the benzo site that gives you an A-Z list of  'possible' w/d symptoms. I want to be healthy and I know this forum has helped me along in my mission to do so :)
563594 tn?1309583132
whoops,  going back and reading this post, I already responded 15 days ago. lol, I pretty much said the same thing twice :)
617347 tn?1331293081
i can only agree  wih you, xru, that this place is also for healing and recovery, i know for sure i wouldn't be in the same position now without it and the people i have found here ,  have been the best help i could have found ( not only a forum to cope information  but  a forum with  "living" help  for me day by day in this time..)

i like what you said , mangee, "i know i can , i know i can " (making  suggestion  work for good...  talking about suggestions  :))  yes, now "i know i can" thanks to having found this forum and for a while i will stay here as long as i think it's still helping me...
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