Blogs


Notices

Desperate for change!

Old 02-25-2010, 01:32 PM
  # 1 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Missouri
Posts: 5
Desperate for change!

Hi everyone, just a quick introduction here. My name is Jen and Iím a 30-year old wife and mother in the Midwest. I have been addicted to opiates since 2003. Except for the 2 times I was pregnant, I have been using them consistently. It all started with Tramadol. Even though itís not a narcotic, it is still very addictive and I have averaged about 20 per day for years. Iíve had prescriptions from a doctor from time to time but for the most part, I have always purchased the Tramadol online which is extremely easy. A short questionnaire and credit card number will get a bottle of 180 pills overnighted to me.

The last few months, I have noticed that I no longer feel any kind of buzz from the Tramadol. They have usually made me feel a bit giddy and have always given me boatloads of energy. But lately, I get nothing. I have to take at least 15 per day just to NOT go into withdrawals. The w/d from Tramadol is pretty horrendous and while I have never had w/dís from any real opiates, I think it is about the same, judging from all I have seen/heard/read about opiate w/d.

So lately, trying to sustain my energy level so I can be Superwoman Ė wife, mother, full time office manager, housekeeper, church girl, etc Ė I have started dabbling in some heavier stuff. Mostly 40mg Oxycontin, a few Percocets, etc. But now I am getting to the point where I have to have the Tramadol plus something stronger just to get me through the day. I have even been taking Ritalin for an extra energy boost. So far today, I have already taken 8 Ritalins and it's not even 3pm yet. They are okay but I hate the anxious feeling they give me when they wear off - and they wear off VERY quickly.

I love opiates simply for the euphoric, invincible, speedy feeling they give me. When I have taken the right pills, I am the most productive person in the world. I enjoy doing housework, my tasks at work, everything - just about anything I do makes me happy. I've often wondered why I simply can't just feel like that all the time with no medicine involved.

I think I am in deep trouble because I am just head over heels in love with the feeling that only Tramadol and opiates can give me. I don't drink, don't smoke and have never been one to do any street drugs. I HATE downers like Valium, Xanax, etc - can't stand them! The only time I am willing to take a downer is if I am getting ready to go to bed. I can't keep my eyes open if I take even a quarter of a Xanax during the daytime.


I am desperate to stop being an addict. I would do almost anything to not have to rely on medication to get out of bed in the morning. I have even contemplated wrecking my car on purpose so I can be hospitalized - I keep telling myself if I can go a few days without pills then that will be a good start and I will be able to make it. It's pretty sad that I am even entertaining these thoughts.

But I really donít even know where to start. We wonít have health insurance until June so I canít go see a doctor yet. Rehab is not an option Ė I would lose my job and we donít have the money. I work about 45 hours per week and donít have any vacation time until July. Calling in sick for a few days wonít work because I just missed 3 days last week due to a ruptured eardrum. My boss is GREAT but is a stickler for good attendance.

When I am home, I have to take care of my husband and 2 girls (7 years and 15 months), do chores, laundry, etc. So I donít really have an opportunity to just go disappear for a few days to get the worst of it over. My husband is also addicted to Tramadol. On the outside, we look like a perfect, church going, hard working family Ė nobody would ever look at us and think we were addicts. I am so ashamed. My husband and I have a great relationship but we know we need to stop taking Tramadol. We just donít know how to.

Does anyone have any suggestions for us? The few times I have stopped taking drugs has been absolutely horrific. I canít imagine trying to come to work with w/dís. When I have had w/d's before, it was all I could do to even stand up and walk across the room let alone go to work, exercise, eat healthy, etc.

I donít know if we should wait a few months until we have insurance and vacation and try to detox then or if we should just try to do something now. But even though we might get a few days away from work, we still have responsibilities at home that can't be passed along to anyone else. I am getting severely depressed and am desperate to get off pills forever. I want my life back.

But honestly, I donít even remember what it feels like to not be on pills. I have myself convinced that life will suck without anything to enhance my mood and give me energy. I know for a fact that life used to be pretty good without drugs but I am scared that I will never feel good again without them.

Does anybody have any good advice, personal stories, etc for me? I hate the thought that anyone else has to suffer like this but at the same time it makes me feel better to know I am not alone. There are plenty of good people out there who are in the same boat I am in.

My friend told me the other day to Ďjust stop taking pillsí. I tried to explain to her that it was damn near impossible to go cold turkey and still go to work, do stuff at home, etc. She said ĎWho cares if you have the runs for a few days? Just get over it, it wonít last for very long. You need to put your kids first here, stop being a drug addict and be a good momí. Ouch! That hurt to hear her say that. I wish it was that easy, though.

I wish so incredibly hard that I could just tell myself I'm done with the pills, stop taking them, grit my teeth and just get it over with. But it's so easy to hop online, order a bottle of Tramadol and have it sent to me within 12 hours - it's cheap and not even illegal. I just don't think I will ever be strong enough to stay away from the poison that I love so much.

I've tried the Thomas Recipe before but that did little to ease the agony. I've looked at things such as Kratom and don't know how that could help. But if it will then I will try it without thinking twice. Suboxane is not an option due to lack of insurance. We have a methadone clinic here but I imagine it's obscenely expensive.

NOBODY can understand this hell unless they have been there and done that. I wish it was as simple as loving my girls, I really wish the love I have for them would cover a multitude of symptoms. But it doesnít. I love my family more than life but that doesnít help me stop being an addict.

I am willing to go to NA, too. But that is not going to help me with the initial phase of w/d. All the 12-step meetings in the world cannot alleviate the cold/clammy/hot sensations, the restless limbs, head zaps, indescribable fatigue and lethagy, insomnia, etc. If a normal person were to look at those symptoms, they would probably think it was no worse than having the flu. There is just no way to convey the horrendous feeling of w/d. There are no words that are strong enough to even touch upon what it feels like to stop taking opiates. I'm pretty sure it is the worst feeling anyone can possibly have.

All I know is that something needs to change. I just want to be me again, whoever that is. I really don't even remember.

Thanks for listening,

Jen
JennyT is offline  
The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to JennyT For This Useful Post:
DownInIt (02-25-2010), KenL (02-26-2010), least (02-25-2010), prettypoison (02-26-2010), Shellslove (02-25-2010), Stereosteveo (02-26-2010)
Old 02-25-2010, 01:51 PM
  # 2 (permalink)  
Administrator
 
Dee74's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Australia
Posts: 204,045
Blog Entries: 1
Hi Jen

I've never taken tramadol or opiates, but I spend a lot of time in our Substance Abuse forum - the thing about waiting a few months is...it's not going to get better.

You can nip this in the bud now...or you can watch it grow.

I think you need to get professional advice about this now - insurance or not.

Visit our substance abuse forum too - you'll find a lot of folks down there as well who know what you're going through.

Substance Abuse - SoberRecovery : Alcoholism Drug Addiction Help and Information

D
Dee74 is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Dee74 For This Useful Post:
DownInIt (02-25-2010), Shellslove (02-25-2010)
Old 02-25-2010, 01:54 PM
  # 3 (permalink)  
CindeRella is proof that a new pair of shoes can change your life!
 
Rella927's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Spreading my wings
Posts: 7,163
Welcome to SR Jenny! I have not been where you are but I do know that others in these forums have. Please check out our Substance abuse forums-you find others that can share with you.

Glad that you have joined and hope that you find the answers and help you are looking for
Rella927 is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to Rella927 For This Useful Post:
Dee74 (02-25-2010)
Old 02-25-2010, 02:06 PM
  # 4 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Missouri
Posts: 5
Wow, thank you for the welcome - that was fast! I have been looking through a lot of the threads on the substance abuse forums and can definitely see that there are a lot of people on here that can relate.

I know I am not supposed to ask for medical advice so I'm not, per se, but I just don't see how I can see a doctor or get treated with no insurance and virtually no money (of course all of our disposable income gets spent on pills). My credit sucks so I can't get a loan and we don't have any family in the position to lend us money.

Although we both work very hard and pay taxes so that other people can have health insurance, we don't qualify for Medicaid because we make too much money. That doesn't seem fair to me but there's nothing I can do about it. I just wish I could take a percentage of the tax I pay to the great state of Missouri and use it for my treatment.

I have looked into free clinics in the area but most of them have income restrictions and very long waiting lists for even a basic appointment.

So I just feel very... stuck.
JennyT is offline  
Old 02-25-2010, 02:27 PM
  # 5 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: NH
Posts: 12
Hi Jenny,

Sorry to hear about the rough times you're experiencing, but I wanted to let you know that it IS possible to overcome a tramadol addiction. And I would encourage you to do so immediately. As Dee said, things will only get worse if you continue down this path. Last December, I had a full on grand mal seizure from tramadol abuse that landed me in the hospital and don't want to see this happen to anyone else. Yes, the withdrawals are horrible; they brought me to my knees every time I tried to quit cold turkey (the brain zaps, monumental depression, etc). But eventually, a dr. set up a taper schedule that worked for me (I gave the pills to my girlfriend so I wouldn't abuse them). Please, insurance or no insurance, see someone about this. At 20 pills a day, you're above and beyond the maximum prescribed dosage...not to mention, risking your life.

Just wanted to let you know that I understand what you're going through and that there's light at the end of the tunnel for you and your husband both. I too fell victim to the simplicity of ordering from online pharmacies and thought that since it wasn't illegal and tramadol isn't a controlled substance...what was the worst harm I could do? Well, the answer to that question came in the form of a life-threatening seizure which could of left me with brain damage or god knows what else. Point being, I was extremely lucky.

Please get help. And welcome to SR. This site has been an INCREDIBLE source of inspiration for me and I wish the same for you.

Take care,

JD
DownInIt is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to DownInIt For This Useful Post:
Dee74 (02-25-2010), least (02-25-2010)
Old 02-25-2010, 02:31 PM
  # 6 (permalink)  
Administrator
 
Dee74's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Australia
Posts: 204,045
Blog Entries: 1
I'm not in the US Jenny so I can't help you with specific suggestions. Others here may have ideas for you.

I think most people will tell you though that trams (and oxy and ritalin) are all pretty hard to get off on your own, and like I say it's likely to get worse, not better if you don't do something.

NA is free though, and I hope you and your husband at least look into that

D
Dee74 is offline  
Old 02-25-2010, 02:34 PM
  # 7 (permalink)  
bona fido dog-lover
 
least's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: SF Bay area, CA
Posts: 96,439
Blog Entries: 32
Please see a doctor, or go to the ER for medical advice on tapering off the tramadol. You said you don't like 'downers' but sometimes they are given to ward off seizures during withdrawals. Please see a doctor for advice on tapering off before it gets any worse. If you go to an ER sometimes they have charity care where you don't have to pay. Please make an effort to get medical help in getting off the tramadol. It's your life we're talking about!
least is online now  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to least For This Useful Post:
Dee74 (02-25-2010), DownInIt (02-25-2010)
Old 02-25-2010, 03:19 PM
  # 8 (permalink)  
Friend
 
Shellslove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: East Coast, Killa
Posts: 372
I totally heard myself in this post Jenny. My DOC was Tramadol too and I know what a nightmare this can be. I was on that same rollercoaster as you (online purchasing, energy and highs, crashing lows and w/ds.) I don't have children but I can imagine how difficult it is to take care of others when you're having trouble with yourself. My fiance is an addict too Jenny (not trams, harder stuff) - but we are now in recovery together. As others here have mentioned, you really need to see a doctor and please don't C/T without seeking medical supervision. You are on a slippery slope that could end up in seizures, and that really scares me for you and your kids. My Dr told me that the w/d is so horrific b/c as well as the opiate like properties of the trams they have SNRI (anti-depressant) properties. Think about the number of these things we take everyday - that's dangerous enough, but it can be even more dangerous to suddenly take this away. BUT it can be done SAFELY with medical supervision and either a taper plan or an alternative medically planned detox. Have you looked around at state funded assistance, free health clinic services, Medicaid etc?

Welcome to SR! You're at the right place!
Shellslove is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to Shellslove For This Useful Post:
Dee74 (02-25-2010)
Old 02-25-2010, 05:08 PM
  # 9 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 200
Your post was properly spell-checked, grammatically sound and thorough.

Interesting.
MeAndOnlyMe is offline  
Old 02-25-2010, 05:59 PM
  # 10 (permalink)  
Friend
 
Shellslove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: East Coast, Killa
Posts: 372
^^^?
Shellslove is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Shellslove For This Useful Post:
NoelleR (02-25-2010), Stereosteveo (02-26-2010)
Old 02-26-2010, 08:12 AM
  # 11 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Missouri
Posts: 5
Originally Posted by MeAndOnlyMe View Post
Your post was properly spell-checked, grammatically sound and thorough.

Interesting.
Thank you for the observation! I tend to be a stickler for all of the above.

Before I became an addict, I always assumed that 'druggies' (as I used to call them) were dirty, uneducated, poor people with no teeth and really nasty hair. I didn't think that people who did good in school, went to college, got a job good, had a nice family, etc would even entertain thoughts of using drugs. How very, very naive and callous of me.

The only difference between me and the stereotypical junkie is the fact that I am so, so good at hiding it from everyone around me.
JennyT is offline  
Old 02-26-2010, 08:36 AM
  # 12 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Missouri
Posts: 5
Originally Posted by Shellslove View Post
I totally heard myself in this post Jenny. My DOC was Tramadol too and I know what a nightmare this can be. I was on that same rollercoaster as you (online purchasing, energy and highs, crashing lows and w/ds.) I don't have children but I can imagine how difficult it is to take care of others when you're having trouble with yourself. My fiance is an addict too Jenny (not trams, harder stuff) - but we are now in recovery together. As others here have mentioned, you really need to see a doctor and please don't C/T without seeking medical supervision. You are on a slippery slope that could end up in seizures, and that really scares me for you and your kids. My Dr told me that the w/d is so horrific b/c as well as the opiate like properties of the trams they have SNRI (anti-depressant) properties. Think about the number of these things we take everyday - that's dangerous enough, but it can be even more dangerous to suddenly take this away. BUT it can be done SAFELY with medical supervision and either a taper plan or an alternative medically planned detox. Have you looked around at state funded assistance, free health clinic services, Medicaid etc?

Welcome to SR! You're at the right place!


Thank you for sharing that with me! I had a seizure the 3rd month I was on Tramadol, way back in 2003. Of course it wasn't enough to stop me - how freakin sad is that? I have noticed a HUGE difference in the quality of the Tramadol from back then compared to now. I think it used to be a lot more potent but that could all be in my head, too. Back then, I only had to take 7 or 8 per day. It was only in the last year and a half that I have started taking 15 - 20. I know a lot of that has to do with my tolerance but I still think that Tramadol made today is much weaker than in past years and it stopped giving me the Superwoman feeling quite some time ago.

Can I ask you how long it took to get back to your normal self? Are you happy again with life in general now that you are off the drug? I think I am trying to find someone who will tell me what I want to hear; I know that is kinda pathetic but I am craving some kind of reassurance that I will feel better down the road.

I wish we did qualify for Medicaid but our income level is too high. My husband just got a great new job in January but he is not eligible for health insurance until he has been there for 6 months. My job, although it is a great one, doesn't offer insurance because it is such a small outfit. I know that the money we would save from not buying pills would more than cover insurance premiums for us. I think our plan is to order a few more bottles of Tramadol, get a little money together, buy independent health insurance and then go see a doctor who is willing to help.

I greatly admire people who can go cold turkey but I am simply not one of them. I don't think we will pursue methadone - I don't want to trade one addiction for another - but surely there is something that can help us out.

Again, thank you so much for sharing your experience. Congratulations on getting your life back in order!
JennyT is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to JennyT For This Useful Post:
Shellslove (02-26-2010)
Old 02-26-2010, 11:15 AM
  # 13 (permalink)  
Friend
 
Shellslove's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: East Coast, Killa
Posts: 372
I thought the grammar comment was some kind of 'knock.' Addict thinking, caring too much what others think of me, paranoid that they're judging me and reflecting it on others! Gotta move past that...grrr..!

Unfortunately it's not a surprise to me that the seizure didn't change things for you. I've gone through he!! and back with my addicition but wasn't ready to quit, until I was really ready ---regardless of the physical and mental turmoil the pills caused. They made me 'happy' gave me 'energy' -- I could do anything-- until I couldn't. I don't know much about the manufacture of medications, but I would bet the potency is not the issue. Tolerance, as you know, is the nature of the opiate beast. We take more and more and they 'work' less and less. Over time the rushing energy and peace of mind falls away - but the cold sweats, racing heartbeat, insomnia and nausea worsen - at least for me. I'm embarassed to say I was taking 50+ of those bad boys at the height of my addiction, and the obsession was the worst part. Counting pills hourly, Calling fedex and some guy in timbuktu 7x a day like a crazy woman, screaming about how irresponsible they were. I paid extra for early delivery damnit! G-d knows I do not miss that feeling. By some miracle I never had a seizure, but the constant muscle twitching and 'jumps' as I like to call them were no party.

I can't tell you when it will 'hit home' for you or how long it will take, I can only tell you my experience. I wanted off the damn tramadol so bad and everyday there was a new excuse - big presentation coming up, vacation with the family, not enough money. I was spending upwards of $500/monthly on those effing pills, but I still couldn't find the money for treatment. And like you every week I told myself, okay just one more bottle...I'll save up enough and finally have the money to really get help and quit! Never happened for me - not until I realized there was no excuse I was willing to make to NOT save my life.

My p-doc and I decided on Subutex therapy. He also prescribed me an SSRI to 'lessen the blow' from coming off that much tramadol. I have about a 15 yr+ history with opiates and really I was scared of the w/d I knew all too well, I was scared to quit and stay quit. I've had ups and downs with my decision, but overall this worked for me while I worked on my recovery. The Subs weren't a cure, but they have bought me time. Subutex worked for me at a time when I needed it, 18 months+ later and faced with the inevitable taper off this medication, I do wonder daily if I replaced one drug for another. And until I was able to treat the sub therapy as a tool in my recovery and not just another DOC, it may have been just that. I still do have times when I struggle, I know that I am an addict and I always will be-- I don't blame that on the Subutex, I blame that on addiction. The obsession is hard to break, but for today - I will not pick up.

No matter what route of recovery you choose, I do hope you seek help sooner rather than later. It could mean your life.

(I think it was in your original question too. I was on tramadol for I think about 2 1/2 years. Before that I ran the gammet of opiates and stimulants, but the tramadol took me down.)
Shellslove is offline  

Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:54 PM.