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Addiction: Substance Abuse Community
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Avatar universal

Getting off hydrocodone

Please tell me how long it takes to get off hydrocodone.  I've been on 3 years and been tapering down until I got to 7.5-375 for the last 2 months.  I finally went cold turkey and it has been 3 days of pure hell!  How much longer ANYONE!!!!!!!
16 Responses
Avatar universal
Your at the worst of it now, in a day or 2 you'll start to feel better. Then the sleep and stomach issues might linger a little longer. I'm at a month clean now and feel pretty damn good! Hang in their
2 Comments
When this is over I'm to have back surgery and I know he will give me pain medication which I will refuse.  I've heard once addicted always addicted.  Is that true?  I'm scared to death about having the surgery which will be in about 3 months from now. I'm on my 3rd day of withdraw and feel like I'm going crazy!  This is the most horrible thing I've ever gone through.  It feels almost at times bugs are crawling all inside of my body and I have taken so many baths my water bill will be out of site but I don't care!  The hot water helps so much but doesn't last.  My appetite is not!  I cannot eat much but soup and I almost gag trying to get it down.  Anymore advice I would appreciate.  You really feel like you want to die when this is going on.  I pray and pray and pray that God will help me and it is so bad I can hardly stand it.  Do you think it will be soon that I will start feeling better.  The last pill I had was at 9 am on Tuesday and today is Friday at 5:00 pm.  Any encouraging words help.  Thanks so far what all you said.  I'm so desperate right now!!!!!!!!!!!
Hello AbbySue. Yes, it will start to improve slowly. Like someone else said on here...you just got to be ok with not feeling ok. I'm can tell you that I'm slowly getting clearer in my mind and I still have sweats, shivers, stomach issues, but hey, I did this to myself so I need to correct it. I found if I don't concentrate on myself or my withdrawal, I feel better! Just try not to drive yourself nuts over your feeling. I know that's harder to do than say. I also know the feeling of desperation your feeling!! Don't worry so much, I promise you will start feeling the improvements soon! As far as your surgery goes...I would urge you to not take any narcotic as that's how I got hooked after my shoulder surgery. Maybe write down your feelings now in a journal as you go thru withdrawal so you can remember the pain! Maybe that will help in the future as I for one would never want to go thru this ever ever again!! I also had the same feelings of wanting to just die in the beginning of this journey to recovery but those thoughts are fleeting now and replaced with hope!! I'm so sorry for your suffering now but just know that...This Too Shall Pass!!! Keep going please...your worth it!
Avatar universal
Welcome abbysue! Congratulations on tapering and a big congratulations for 3 days. Please don't cave!!
You have reached the peak! It will only get better days ahead from here. What are the symptoms that are over the top? We will support you through this. Let's us know what is happening and if you have tried anything.
4 Comments
I've started having the bathroom issues now and still hurt from head to toe.  Today is day 4 and I still don't feel very well.  I made myself do my dishes, get dressed, put on makeup, fix my hair, make my bed and the whole time I felt like I was going insane with pain.  This has got to stop soon or I'm going to loose my mind!  HELP!
Hi Abbysue, good on you for keeping on.  Have you taken anything to help with running to the bathroom such as Immodium. Can you take over the counter NSAIDS or paracetamol for the pain. Also hot baths or showers help many add Epsom Salts to the bath.
I know it's hard, buy you are doing the right thing by being active. Something is better then nothing.
Today is day 5.  Still having bathroom problems but getting better.  I'm still aching but I can see things are getting just a little better.  I made myself clean my house a little.  Trying to not just sit all the time.  This is a nightmare!  Maybe it is day 4, All I know is the last pill I had was Monday at 9 am and now it is Saturday and I haven't had any pain medication since that 9 am pill on Monday.  I don't have anything to take and can't get out.  I look like I need to go to the garbage dump!  I look awful and don't want getting dolled up to get any medication for the bathroom issue.  Anyway, thank you so much for talking to me.  It is the hardest thing I ever had to do.  How long before you began to feel like a real person?  I realized that I've been on pain medication for approximately 2 1/2 years and it could have been 3, forget.  Anyway I realize I don't know who I am!!  Does that make sense?  It's like you've been controlled by pain meds for so long and acted upon how you felt that when you have to be you, you don't know how to be you!  I know that sounds ridiculous but that is how I feel.  Hope your doing ok.  I really do!  Thanks for everything.  I just wish it over!!!!!!!!!!!
Hey AbbySue. Good morning! It's a beautiful day. You are making it. I know exactly what your feeling as I'm still feeling that way. It's like I forgot who I really am, but others in my life can see my improvement cause I keep asking! I also feel a little stronger each day but man this is a struggle. Just keep it up, your worth it. Lots of water and exercise seem to help me a lot but it's hard to be motivated I know! Got to fake it till you make it!! Take care and try enjoy the day as well as be thankful for your blessings!!
Avatar universal
I just read your other post. Please just stick with this one.
I'm glad your heart issues have been resolved.

Awesome job, giving the pain meds to your sister. The diazepam will help please though make sure you take it as prescribed and not long as theses can be a nightmare to withdraw from.

For the restless legs, yougo to your dr and see if clonidine is suitable for you to take. Clondine is an old BP medication which is now used in opiate detoxification.
3197167 tn?1348968606
Welcome to the forum, AbbySue☺
You are doing SO good, but I know you don't think you are.  Days 3 and 4 are typically the WORST days....when you really feel like you're in the pit!
It WILL get better.  Some things you might not know.....you will have what is called "rebound pain".  Your pain receptors are used to being covered by the pain meds and now they are freaking out because they aren't getting what they have been used to for 3 yrs.  Give yourself some time to heal and then re-evaluate your pain.  It may take up to 30 days or so to truly know your pain levels.  You will begin producing endorphins naturally as your brain and body heal.  To boost endorphins, you can eat chocolate, laugh, listen to music, eat something spicy, sniff some vanilla or lavender, take a little ginseng, exercise, have sex, and also take the amino acid supplement L-Tyrosine (if ok with your doctor).
Some things you can do to get thru this first week or so:  take Imodium for your tummy/bowel issues.  Soak in hot Epsom salt baths. (or hot showers if you don't have a tub). Take these hot salt baths as many times a day as you want/need to. They help A LOT!   This will not only help with the pain, but put much needed magnesium into your whole body.  It also helps to leach out the toxins.  For restless legs, you can wrap hot towels around them, a hot pad, compression stockings (if put on properly), or there is a natural homeopathic medication sold most places called Hyland's Restful Legs. Short walks help A LOT...and you may have to force yourself to do this during this first week.  Listening to music is VERY beneficial...in so many ways.  I read your history on another thread so know you'd love listening to praise songs and songs that feed your soul.  
If you have other withdrawal symptoms that you need help with, just get on here and ask.  The forum is full of people that have gone through exactly what you are going through and someone will have a suggestion for you.
Hang in there girl....you are right in the middle of the worst part...and you WILL make it to the other side.  Making yourself do dishes, get dressed, put on makeup, fixing your hair, making your bed...just WOW AbbeySue!! For Day 4 that is simply AMAZING to me!
Giving your left over meds to your sister was a GREAT idea...so much wisdom in that!!  Let us know how you're doing....post as much as you need to.  While the forum has been awfully slow, I promise someone will answer you.  Wishing you continued endurance and perseverance♥
1 Comments
Thank you so much!  I'm so very sick today and I didn't say I was 70 years old!  My b/p is really high from the pain and I feel like I'm not going to make it but I keep pushing with every ounce of strength I've got.  The potty problems started today.  I've gone from Monday until today which is Friday and I'm still quite sick and my nerves feel like they are jerking right out of my body.  I'm alone with no one to help me or I can talk to.  I haven't told a person about this except my sister and she is coming over today.  In a way I don't want anyone here but in other ways I need to talk.  I cannot tell yet that I'm any better and I've had nothing but Tylenol and Advil to try and help the pain it has been so bad.  I haven't slept since  Tuesday night and it was a couple hours here and there.  Nothing to speak of.  I just want to die!  My b/p is 178/98 which is to high.  All I can say is HELP!!!!!
3197167 tn?1348968606
Clonidine is a commonly used medication during withdrawals from opiates.
The added benefit is that it is also used to treat high blood pressure. (a lot of people experience temporary high blood pressure during withdrawals.)  
Just go to Wikipedia and read the first paragraph on Clonidine.
Can you call your doctor and have them call in some clonidine at the pharmacy for you?  It would help you IMMENSELY!  Not only with the high blood pressure, but many of the other symptoms you are experiencing.  (it will help with sleep, too)
As for the not sleeping (another VERY common withdrawal symptom), you can try some of the herbal teas such as Sleepy time or one by Traditional Medicinals that is REALLY good (organic too) called Nighty Night.  It is loaded with plant botanicals that help to promote sleep.  You can also buy some valerian root in capsules (or passion flower, lemon balm, or chamomile).  I used ALL of them...haha!    
As for the pain, unfortunately the rebound pain is one of the hardest things to endure.  Taking the ibuprofen and acetaminophen may take the edge off some.  I found that using Advil Liqui-Gel caps worked best for me.  Something about their bio-availability worked better for me.

Keep your eye on the prize....this won't last forever and you are right in the middle of the worst time...days 3-5 typically.  And just think, once you get thru this, you won't EVER have to do this again.
Keep talking to us.....keep posting.  You're DOING it!!
P.S.  REALLY consider having your dr call in some clonidine, ok?
1 Comments
Hey AbbySue, you are doing great! I'm on day 16 of a horrible horrific withdrawal from Percocet, clonazepam, and Lexapro! It is a wicked concoction I'm coming off, but I'm making it! I want to lend an ear if you need but just know you can do this for real! My body and mind are feeling it big time but I refuse to put anything in my system that will affect my natural state! Total body reset! Keep going, it will get better! Also, very solid advice above!
Avatar universal
Today is day 5 and I got up after sleeping 5 hours, getting up going back to bed and sleeping another 2 hours.  I've lost 7 pounds and for the first time I felt like eating.  I fixed myself a scrambled egg and toast and coffee.  Was eating it and started getting sick!  I feel some better but still a headache and just don't feel like doing much!  This has been the worse thing I've ever been through.  All through this I've written a journal of how I feel and what I'm going through so I can look back on it and help others that are going through what I've been through.  I realize I'm not out of the clear but I feel about 25% better, which doesn't seem like much but to me, especially of how bad I felt it is a blessing.  I've been listening to Christian music and it has really helped.  I'm just wondering how much longer this will last.  I have a one day a week job and that is coming up  on Tuesday but I don't know if I will be able to do it.  What do you all think about that?  What does everyone do that has jobs and obligations like I have but just can't and couldn't do it!  I had to lie (which I hate doing) and tell them I had the flu!  That is horrible but I'm ashamed even though I didn't go out here purchasing these pain killers.  They were prescribed by my Dr. and she knew I was in bad pain with my back.  I do have a question for anyone that can answer it.  I'm suppose to have back surgery in about 3 months and I know they will give me pain killers.  The question is once you've been addicted to pain killers does that mean always addicted.  In other words if I took a pain pill only if absolutely necessary (2 or 3) am I addicted immediately because of the addiction I had?  If not that means I will have to have major back surgery with no pain killers but when I think about it I cannot go through this withdraw again!  I guess I need to tell my surgeon about being addicted, but would still like an answer to this very important question please.  I want to thank everyone for all the support they have given me throughout these 5 days because I don't think I could have gone through this without all of you.  Thank you and I will probably still be on here just to talk and give you all an update.
Avatar universal
Hi Abbysue, it's so good to hear you're feeling slightly better. Just keep taking it a second, a minute a day at a time. Who knows how you will feel on Tuesday, but Im fairly certain it won't feel as bad as last Tuesday!
Avatar universal
Hi Abbysue how are you?
2 Comments
Well, I've lost about 8 pounds, can't stand to eat so I've been eating soup.  Still going to the bathroom and today I can't say I'm not better, but boy oh boy my body is still aching like no body's business!  I don't sleep very well.  If I get 6 hours I'm lucky.  I slept 2 hours last night, was up several hours and finally after soaking in the tub of hot water I went back to bed and slept about 4 more hours.  I still don't feel good but trying to be as active as I can and it isn't easy.  I'm suppose to go to work Tuesday and can't see it happening!  Any feedback would be appreciated.  Thanks.
Hi Abbysue I know you can't see it now but you are doing awesome for keeping on! You are getting up and perserving, this shows how strong and capable you are.
The hot bath seems to have really helped. Have as many as you are able.
When Tuesday comes and you still feel unable to go to work, can you call in sick?
Avatar universal
AbbySue, I went through the exact same thing.  I went off of codeine on March 2.  I had the same symptoms.  I was able to get some clonidine from my doctor to help with the withdraw.  It helped IMMEDIATELY!  I still felt bad but not nearly AS bad.  It is a month now and I feel physically ok.  Withdraw lasted about 10 days or so, but much better when I got the clonidine. You are almost there. Dont give up!  You are worth it!!   You should be starting to feel better very soon.  Each day is a little better than the last. Praying for you!  
1 Comments
Thanks wonbyone.  Today is day 7 and last night no sleep!  I'm not having the best day but I realize it could be worse.  The 2 main problems I'm having is  RLS in my legs that won't quit!   I'm not sleeping worth anything!  Last night I went to bed at 9:00 and there was no way I could sleep even if I wanted to.    I already have RLS and it seems worse than ever!  My main complaint is not sleeping and nervous pain in my legs to where I can't control them.  Needless to say, I'm miserable.  I take requip which is wonderful for RLS.  I've been on it  for years and it really works!  I've had RLS since I was 18 years old and I'm now 70.  Only problem is it isn't working.  I have some gabapentin here that is for nerve pain and was wondering if it would help.  I may take a capsule tonight.  I can't think I'm so worn out with lack of sleep!  Any suggestions?
Avatar universal
Hi, Abby, I didn't read everyone's responses, but at 7 days, you are barely out of the acute phase. This is going to take time. Several weeks, til you get some normalcy back. You were on opiate for 3 years, it's going to take more than a week. And you mentioned that you are 70, unfortunately, the older we are, the harder it is. Sleep and level moods are the last things to normalize. There is someone on here who always says about withdrawl: you're going to have to be okay w/ not being okay for a while. I remember not even expecting to sleep when I was in early wds. For rls, I have heard that Hyland's restless legs helps. Also, bananas (potassium.)
2 Comments
jifmoc, thank you for your comments.  Today is 8 days and I'm telling you I have to force myself to do anything.  I just went shopping for groceries and you would have thought I did 30 minutes of intense exercise.  The pain is one thing I'm not understanding.  I can't tell if it is legitimate pain or pain from the w'draw!  I'm weak, still feel terrible but compared to the first 4 days I'm great if you look at it in that perspective.  Believe it or not I'm still running to the bathroom about 3 times a day instead of 10 times a day.  I have absolutely no energy and it is so discouraging.  I hate feeling this way and yet I know I have to do this!  I wouldn't go back for anything but the pain is still quite bad!  I slept 2 hours last night was up about 3 hours and then went to sleep for another 3 hours.  That is good.  Normally I sleep 2 or 3 hours maximum.  This may sound ridiculous but it almost feels like I have bugs crawling through my legs.  I've lost 10 pounds which I don't need to loose!  I have no appetite but make myself eat something.  Nothing sounds good to me at all!  So if I'm understanding you this could go on for another 3 weeks?  Oh My!  Is that how long it took for you to feel normal again?  I'm just worried because of my age I may never feel normal again!  Any comments to my ridiculous comments would be appreciated.  I feel like I say the same things over and over, but this is all new to me and I'm so mad at my Dr. right now I could scream.  She had the nerve to tell me the other day that she didn't think I could ever get off pain meds because of the pain I have in my back.  I'm getting ready to have an injection in my back to relieve this pain.  BUT, that isn't the pain I'm talking about here.  I know back pain from this pain I'm having.  I feel like I get on here and complain to much but when your my age and days go by you feel like your loosing part of your life.  After all none of us know when we will die and meet our maker!  Again thank you for responding and I do appreciate it so much!
I have a very stupid question that is bothering me!  Is there anyone that has this symptom from w/d?  I sneeze all day since I gave up Hydrocodone.  I start sneezing from the time the day starts until it ends and through the night since I don't sleep over 3-5 hours a night.  Today is day 9 for me and I am sneezing my head off!  I don't have allergies, cold, no symptoms of a cold, absolutely nothing to indicate sinus or cold but just sneeze constantly!  Strange, isn't it?  Need comments please on this.
Avatar universal
Hello Hello AbbySue. Your doing awesome. Yes, all your symptoms are exactly the same as mine. I am over 3weeks in and I still sneeze, lack energy, and have the stomach issues. Just remember, this too shall pass!!! Eat lots of bananas, that seems to help my legs some!! Take care!!
Avatar universal
Yup, sneezing and yawning and everything you said is totally normal. Opiates suppress absolutely every function we have, so that's why when we stop, everything starts acting up again, like a plugged in machine. I can't say for how long exactly it will take, but patience is the key. This will all pass. It's usually a symptom at a time. Little by little. None of these symptoms will kill you, even though they're awful. I don't know if you mentioned if you were an addict or not but if so, I strongly suggest getting into aftercare (meetings.) That will help more than you know.
3 Comments
Well everyone, I needed to post something before I leave.  I'm on day 10 and the main problem I'm having is absolutely no strength.  I can hardly get up and function at all.  I have no energy and feel like I'm dying slowly!  I don't say that lightly.  I've been eating bananas to get potassium and trying to get up and do something but I can't!  I feel like if I do I'll fall in the floor.  Can hardly get from one room to the other.  It is scary and worse than I can write.  I'm still not sleeping and I feel like I'm going to faint sometimes.  I'm very light headed.  You have to remember I'm 70 years old and maybe that is the problem.  Maybe most of you are young or younger but let me tell you that this has taken a tole on my body.  I'm going to see my Dr. in 2 hours.  Believe me, if she even suggests I get back on Hydrocodone I think I'll give her a tongue lashing!  I still won't take it for anything!  I've never hated something in all my life than pain medication.  I'm beginning to believe it is the devils tool to capture people and cause them nothing but heartache and problems.  Everyone talks about this clonidine and I'm not sure about it because you can become addicted to that from what I've read, but I may have her give me 3 Ambien pills to sleep at least 3 nights.  I desperately need sleep.  I'm up every night and sleep very little like I said above.  Sleep is such a vital part of repair and I'm not getting it.  I'll have to say I'm very concerned about all this (not understanding the severity of how I feel after 10 days)!  Everyone of you have been my angels and how I love and appreciate every one of you, I mean that!  If you have any suggestions before I leave to see my Dr. please feel free to leave me a message.  I will check back just before I need to leave.  Again, thank you and God Bless each and everyone of you is my prayer.
I am so glad you are going to the dr.  With the symptoms you've been describing is has been a concern.

Clonidine is definitely not addictive. We're you confiding it with Clonazepam?
No.  I'm taking carvetilol (not sure of the spelling) for blood pressure.  I've been taking it some time.  I take one in the am and on in the pm.  I've had 5 heart stents, but my heart checks out and no blockages, so this has to be something low in my body like potassium or lack of sleep or maybe my electrolytes are low.  I'm not sure but from reading everything you have all posted I should be feeling better by now and I'm not.  With my heart I believe it is a lack of sleep.  We need sleep as much as we need water.  I have probably had 27 hours of sleep in 10 days.  I looked back on my journal and I have had 2 hours, sometimes 3 each night except last night I had 6.  To go 10 days with 2-3 hours sleep each night isn't good for anyone much less an old woman.  SarahOz thank you honey for posting before I leave.  I have a little less than an hour and I have to leave.  You have been so great to talk to just as everyone has.  I wish all of you the best.  I just pray that I will get through this battle because I know I cannot keep this up!  I'm worn out so badly that I cannot function.  Will  keep everyone posted.  God Bless!
Avatar universal
Well, went to the Dr. and she has put me on extra b/p meds along with what I've already been prescribed.  It was very high when I went in.  She is concerned about my potassium levels and electrolytes.  I have very little energy if any.  I told her just exactly how I felt and I double dared her to even mention to me about getting back on Hydrocodone.  She didn't, she actually said "I'm proud of you, good job. It won't be but maybe another week and you'll feel better!"  Did my heart good.  She stayed in the room with me a very long time and we talked a lot.  One thing that was going on was I had a urinary infection which doesn't make you feel so good.  She really took the time with me and talked to me freely.  So, I guess I'll know the results in a day.  If there is anything to report I'll let you know.  I want to help others when I get through with myself.  Can you tell me how to go about it.  I've always been on this page and not sure how to find someone new to this seeking help and advice.  When you receive you should give and that is what I want to do.  Thanks everyone.
Avatar universal
What a relief it is that you have gone to the drs with that high BP of yours and all your symptoms. Please if you feel like this again, get medical attention straight away. I so hope you don't. But I just had to write it. Did you have bloods done to check electrolytes out? Sounds like you have a wonderful dr.
If you see a post on here and you feel to respond then do so!
1 Comments
My Dr. did blood work immediately.  She is great!  Question?  I've been told at first the first 3 days are the worse, then the first 5 days are the worse and now it takes weeks!  I'm in for the long hall but which is it?  My Dr. said to me  probably another week I'll start feeling better.  To be honest with you I cannot tell if this pain I'm having is legitimate pain or still pain medication w/d pain.  How do you tell.  I hurt pretty bad.  It is hard to know what kind of pain your having.  It almost seems like at first but not as bad of course.  My Dr. gave me Ambien to sleep.  I asked for just 3 pills.  I felt that if I could get a good night sleep for 3 days in a row I would feel better.  Just a guess.  All I know is I expected to be over this by day 10 for sure but I'm definitely not!  It is hard for me to sit still.  Plus I almost start feeling down somewhat.  Not depressed but just down if that makes any sense.  Inside of my heart I keep saying to God, "Will this ever end or will I be like this forever?"
Avatar universal
Again, all these symptoms are NORMAL. Especially at only 10 days. I could barely get off the couch at 10 days and I'm a lot younger than you. I was so weak, I called it the boneless chicken. That's how I felt. As I said, it takes weeks to start to feel some normalcy so please be patient. Good job on taking care of yourself.
3 Comments
Hang in there AbbySue. It will get better. I am inspired by you doing this. You are strong although you might not feel it now. Keep going, it's got to let up some soon!
Well, guess what?  My Dr. gave me 3 Ambien upon my request because I told her I had to sleep.  Last night I slept 9 hours straight through and woke up feeling so much better.  Not saying I don't still have many symptoms but one think I asked my Dr. was how much longer will I go through this and she said another week.  That means by the 20th I should start feeling much better.  I rely on what she said because she has helped me in so many ways.  I think she blames herself for giving me the pain meds but at the time my b/p was 210/110.  She knew it was from pain and was more concerned about my b/p than anything and I was taking a lot of b/p medication but when your in pain sometimes the medication doesn't work. When I told her what my b/p had been running she was quite upset.  She told me I should have come in sooner and I told her there was no way.  It was all I could do to get off the couch and do my dishes, etc.  So if she is right it does take about 14 days to start feeling fairly normal.  For me it has been 11 days and looking back I cannot believe I was able to got his far.  So according to her it will be approximately the 20th or before until I see big results.  She usually knows what she is talking about.  She is a good friend and a wonderful Dr.  We use to go to church together but I am going somewhere else now.  I'm believing I can go to church on Easter Sunday (which is coming up in 2 days.)  By the way Happy Easter!  He is Risen!  I hope what I've said will help someone.  Don't know if I need to get on a different page to let others know my story or just stay on this page.  This is all new to me and I just seem to go to the bottom of the page and comment from where the last person talked to me.  Don't know I'm doing this right or now.  Thanks again everyone.  I've written approximately 36 pages of my experience.
If you go to the community ie Substance abuse and click "ask a question"  it will give you a new thread. I am finally catching on after 6 weeks.  I left you a note too on your profile page.  You can inbox people to leave a private message or you can leave an encouraging note that others can see. i have inboxed many to ask specific questions and have a conversation.  Also i have asked a new question to begin a new topic and start a new thread of comments.  You are doing great.  Clonidine helped me with the physical symptoms almost immediately.  My doctor has also become my friend and that is a good thing in my opinion.   Clonidine is for withdrawal and can ease the symptoms. My symptoms now are more the depression than the sick withdrawal feelings.

I also was getting my vicodin prescribed for me.  i no longer see that doctor.  I think he did me more harm than good.  I may ask for ambien for sleep.  My sleep is awful and I feel tired and irritable without a good night sleep.  Restoril is what I take now for sleep, it helps some.  i dont want to get hooked on a sleeping pill .

Hang in there  friend.  This will be all over soon.  I also go to church and rely on our savior.  He IS risen indeed and is on our  side.  We are all in this together!! Have a blessed Easter and inbox me or start a new thread if you need to talk. I will try to help you if I can!
Avatar universal
At the top of your profile page you will see leave a message (thats an inbox private) you will see a number if you have a message.   or leave a note, thats an uplifting note that people see.  to the right of what should be a picture (I havent put a picture because I too dont want people to know of my substance addiction) but to the right you can update your status and say how you are feeling that day.  I personally get more response if I start a new thread (a new question) Hope I am helping!  
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A list of national and international resources and hotlines to help connect you to needed health and medical services.