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Addiction: Substance Abuse Community
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1310633 tn?1430224091

10/7/09 Sober Date: Can't Get Away from Narcotic Pain Meds

*This is long, sorry*

I'm not sure how to put into words exactly what my situation is, so I'm going to ramble for a bit and see what comes out (looking for advice):

I produce kidney-stones and pass them on a regular basis (I have an incurable condition called Cystinuria which causes me to make & pass large kidney-stones). Over the years, I became addicted to the very pain med's that were making my condition somewhat tolerable (Dilaudid & Norco), as passing stones with pain-killers is preferable to without. I voluntarily went into treatment to get off said opiates, and have been clean (I haven't self-medicated/used narcotic pain-med's since just prior to 10/7/09). That being said, I've been to the hospital and had narcotics introduced into my system to aid in the passage of stones since then, but I've had no unsupervised narcotic pain-med use since my sober date (all administration has been by hospital nurses/doctors).

The program tells me to be accountable. The program tells me to change the people, the places, and the things I used to do. The program tells me that in order to not use/abuse, just DON'T DO DRUGS. However, I can't get away from pain-killers (due to my condition), and every time I go to the hospital and they administer narcotic pain-killers (either Dilaudid or Morphine), I feel bad for somewhat enjoying the feeling I get from the med's. That being said, I'm getting the med's for legitimate reasons, as kidney-stones hurt like a Muther-F'er and it would be next to impossible to tolerate the pain without them, but does it make my clean date ‘dirty’? Does the fact that I like the euphoric side-effects of the pain-med's they’re administering, make me less ‘sober’?

I always identify as a 'recovering addict' when I enter an ER, and I try to go to the same ER every single time I go to the hospital (I don't want to appear to be doctor-shopping or seeking). Most of the ER staff (nurses & doctors) know me and my 'recovery situation', and they know to treat me with Toradol initially, but if the pain is too far gone for Toradol to have positive effect, they switch to narcotics. In all honesty, I wish I could never have a kidney-stone ever again, but unfortunately, it’s the hand I’ve been dealt and I can’t get away from it and subsequently, the pain-med's I require to get through it.

Sorry to ramble... I told you up front that I'm having difficulty putting this into words.

So, my sober friends on MH... what are your thoughts?
5 Responses
271792 tn?1334979657
Do you have a sponsor? If so, what does he say?

I can only tell you about me. I am not a martyr. If I had legitimate pain and needed, really..really..really needed to take pain medication, I would. But, like you, I would everybody and shout it from the rooftops. The more people that know, who know me, the more I can tell if I am being accountable, also as you said.

The one thing that does concern me is that you are getting that "euphoric" feeling. Is it possible they can cut back the dose so that you only get pain relief? that feeling would scare the hell out of me. Also remember that this disease is cunning, baffling & powerful. It can trick us into thinking things are going on that aren't. I am not saying this is what is going on with you but that is why I surround myself with recovering people.

I am glad you are talking about this and hope you continue to do so here and at meetings. It takes people around me to recognize when I am going in the wrong direction.

Now I am rambling...LOL

Avatar universal
HI well it sounds like your in quit a jam...but to me your doing the best you can with the hand you have been dealt...your not abusing and it sounds like your only using wile in the hospital ....there will be times that even as addicts we will have the legitimate need for pain control and narcotics will be used...as long as your keeping it at the hospital I personally dont see a problem with it...your being mindful that it could develop into a problem so it probably wont ...if your forced to take it at home give it to someone else to hold and give it to you as directed ...I dont see red flags till I here of someone self medicating after being a pill addict ...Im a firm believer that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure so just keep your guard up....deep down inside you know if you really need the meds or your just taking it for a buzz because it is available to you weather it be in a hospital or not let you conscious be the judge if you really need it or mabe could get by on a lesser med like toadol or motrin its good your thinking about it though good luck and God bless.....Gnarly        
1310633 tn?1430224091
Yes... I have a sponsor, and he's well aware of my situation, and says the same things that both you and Gnarly have said... stay accountable.

As for cutting back on the dose, Dilaudid has a way of making you feel 'heady', no matter how low the dose. It's an unfortunate side-effect of the drug.

I get them to give me Toradol (completely non-narcotic), but sometimes the pain is just way more than the Toradol can handle, and they HAVE to switch to either Morphine or Dilaudid. Both of those have a euphoric side-effect, no matter how low the dose (unless the dose was INCREDIBLY low, but in that case, there would be no pain-killing effect and therefore, a pointless administration of said pain-killer).

I'm just keeping my fingers crossed that "they" (medical science) comes up with a pain-killer that has ZERO euphoric effects, that will actually manage sever kidney-stone pain (as well as other types of pain).

Thanks to both you and Gnarly for your responses and support!
199177 tn?1490498534
You are clean there are going to be times you have to take meds .You are being accountable .I have had to have two sugerys I had to have pain relief. I have made everybody aware and the very few I had when I left the hospital where given and administered by my husband .
I have had my fair share of kidney stones they are terrible and mine were small so just keep going to your meetings keep being acountable and you will be just fine .
Avatar universal
If the program your talking about is a 12 step program then look in your basic text under medication. Take as prescribed,dont abuse,and stop when not needed. The not needed part is up to you. For some (like myself) they will always be needed. Like ibkleen said "were not martyrs". Find someone who understands your pain AND your addiction. N.A. has kept me responsible for my use and has absolutely kept me "clean".
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