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Coming clean to family that I'm addicted to drugs

Old 05-14-2013, 04:22 AM
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Coming clean to family that I'm addicted to drugs

It's my second post and my first day here. From what I've seen already it's a very close community and I feel lucky to have found it.

Bit of background, I'm a 31 year old female from Australia and I've just admitted (on Sunday) to my family and friends that I have a problem with prescription and OTC drugs.

I'd been addicted to codeine for a few months about three years ago but managed to quit pretty much cold turkey with the help of prescribed Valium (which I'd never had before). The codeine withdrawals sucked for a few days but I got through it and even managed to come off the valium fairly easily a couple of months after that. This was all around the first half of 2010.

I knew enough about myself that certain triggers (pretty much anything emotionally difficult i refuse to deal with) would be enough to send me back to codeine but I was pretty strong for a few months, and so proud too.

But an emotionally abusive relationship was in my life, I couldn't get over this person no matter how badly he treated me and the back and forth got to me so acutely that i gave in on Xmas eve 2010 and bought some codeine tablets just to make sure I wouldn't ruin Xmas for my family from my emotional state.

Fast forward to now and it's only as at feb this year that I finally extricated myself from the abusive four year relationship. But in that time, 2.5 years now, I've been a slave to codeine and Valium and though I wanted to stop so many times, something bad (or probably not so bad, it's just in my emotional state everything felt worse than it was) would happen and it gave me another lame excuse to keep going.

I can't keep going with it anymore and I think that's why I broke down over something quite trivial but which ruined mothers day for my family and resulted in me finally coming clean about my secret addictions. They knew about my others, cigarettes and a tendency to gamble but as these are legal it wasn't as necessary to hide.

As I posted on my first post, I'm lucky to have my family support and that of one close friend that I've confided in. It's been the hardest thing in the world for me to admit to others...every night in the darkness I could admit my nasty secret to myself, but when the sun came out in the morning I brushed it aside and reached straight for my pills.

Tonight my mum and I saw a doctor to get some sort of plan, unfortunately he does not specialise in addiction at all but we have a tapering programme set for the next couple of weeks with blood tests, psychiatrist and psychologist appointments to be made. I feel like I need to detox though, but will give his recommendations a try.

I half feel like if only I'd kept it to myself I wouldn't be hurting my family or worrying them so much but at the same time I feel relieved. But also guilt, shame, anger and a sense of weakness. I hate myself most of the time. I know my username is silly but the truth is I'm someone who needs help and is **** scared about what's to come or how to react around my family now.

Just wondering how others have felt when they've first admitted addiction to their family and friends? What were your experiences? Any feedback will be very much appreciated
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Old 05-14-2013, 06:46 AM
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Welcome. I think it's important to bring our issues out into the open. I understand how insidious and sneaky opiate/sedative addiction can be. How did I feel when I admitted my issues to my family and friends? To those who clearly care about me I felt ashamed, happy, and sad all at once. Above all though I felt relief. To the people who said "you don't have a problem" I felt mixed emotions. Some of those people just didn't know the extent of my alcohol/drug use. Some of them are clouded by their belief that the can keep using, etc. It's complicated. The bottom line is that I feel relieved that it's out in the open. Scared and relieved.

Hang in there. Don't give up, don't forget to smile.
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Old 05-14-2013, 06:55 AM
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I didn't tell anyone in my family except for my husband. I was so very vulnerable when I finally decided to stop drinking and I felt that an unkind word or look from someone would put me over the edge. I decided to show my family, through my actions, that I was changing.

I think it's great that you talked to your dr and that you have follow-up appointments coming along. That's a great place to start and I hope you continue to read and post here at SR.
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:04 AM
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Welcome Princess. In my experience, most family members and friends are supportive when a loved one admits to having a problem. Not fighting the addiction would hurt your family; telling them about the issue and fighting to remove the addiction would probably making them very happy.

As a side note, can codeine be bought in Australia without a prescription? Another Australian member mentioned buying codeine.
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:19 AM
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to the family! I first admitted to my shrink that I wanted to stop drinking, then I told my dad. Both were very supportive. I didn't tell anyone else tho as I drank alone so no one knew of my problem.

You've come to a very supportive place here at SR. I'm glad you found us and joined the family!
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Old 05-14-2013, 02:21 PM
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I know how you feel darling. I have been sitting here after that first sentence staring at the screen for a while now. There is so much I want to say but am having a hard time putting it all into words. I only have a very, very few days clean at this point and so much is going through my mind. I wish I could give you a big hug and tell you everything is going to be o.k. Truth is I could use the same.

I know how hard it was for you to tell your family, it was for me when I told my mama and daddy. I felt just like you did. I did feel a great relief, it felt good to be rid of that burden I'd carried so long on my own but I also felt sadness and guilt. I felt I'd broken their hearts and that nothing would be the same again, I was wrong. I'm sure their hearts were broken but not because of the shame of their son being an addict but rather because their son, their baby boy, was hurting, was sick with a serious problem and desperately needed help. It hurt them that I was hurting and in ways they couldn't truly understand.

The important thing is that you have loving and supportive people to help you through this very difficult time. You can make it. I keep telling myself that too........everyday. Have faith.
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Old 05-14-2013, 02:28 PM
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Good luck Princess! I think you did the right thing. It sounds like your family loves you very much and wants to help you get better.

You should be proud that you had the guts to admit you have a problem, its a strength to be able to admit it not only to yourself but to your family.

Your on the right path!! Prayers for you!!!
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Old 05-14-2013, 04:58 PM
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Originally Posted by FeenixxRising View Post
Welcome Princess. In my experience, most family members and friends are supportive when a loved one admits to having a problem. Not fighting the addiction would hurt your family; telling them about the issue and fighting to remove the addiction would probably making them very happy.

As a side note, can codeine be bought in Australia without a prescription? Another Australian member mentioned buying codeine.
Thank you to everyone for posting, I'm so lonely but to wake up and find these messages of support and understanding its helped me feel like I'm with friends. So thank you all for sharing your experiences with your families, it means more than I can say (or write )

Feenix, in Australia, well at least in New South Wales (the state I live in) codeine is available over the counter in combos with either ibuprofen or paracetamol. I've been using nurofen plus which is the codeine/ibuprofen one and the shame of carefully mapping out which chemist im going to visit every day hasn't stopped me from doing it. There are several within my area and each time I come up with some lame excuse, hoping its not the same pharmacist on. I've always got the fear that in the back of my mind one pharmacist is going to say to me "no, we know you're that girl who shops around, we ain't enabling you anymore" but even though I'm sure some suspect I'm an addict, I've never had a problem buying them.

My doctor has prescribed me panadeine forte to alleviate the chemist shopping in the short term - its got codeine with paracetamol, becaus of the damage ibuprofen can do to the stomach he felt it was the best option for now. My mum has the boxes hidden and will be giving the doctors' prescribed amount each day. In late June we'll most likely be looking at detox and hopefully rid my body of the codeine, Valium and tobacco (not allowed to smoke in detox here).

We're having a family meeting tonight, I guess I need to be proud of myself for being really honest with them but I wish I wasn't hurting them so much. It kills me to know that they're not sleeping well and their horror at what I've been up to.

Sorry for the long post again, the words just seem to pour out of me and before i know it have written nearly a book - this is the first place I've felt like I can be me after holding the truth in for so long

Peace, love and thoughts with you all here, together we can do this
Mia
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Old 05-14-2013, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by chrisc68 View Post
I know how you feel darling. I have been sitting here after that first sentence staring at the screen for a while now. There is so much I want to say but am having a hard time putting it all into words. I only have a very, very few days clean at this point and so much is going through my mind. I wish I could give you a big hug and tell you everything is going to be o.k. Truth is I could use the same.

I know how hard it was for you to tell your family, it was for me when I told my mama and daddy. I felt just like you did. I did feel a great relief, it felt good to be rid of that burden I'd carried so long on my own but I also felt sadness and guilt. I felt I'd broken their hearts and that nothing would be the same again, I was wrong. I'm sure their hearts were broken but not because of the shame of their son being an addict but rather because their son, their baby boy, was hurting, was sick with a serious problem and desperately needed help. It hurt them that I was hurting and in ways they couldn't truly understand.

The important thing is that you have loving and supportive people to help you through this very difficult time. You can make it. I keep telling myself that too........everyday. Have faith.
Chris, a massive hug from me to you from the land down under - I cried reading your post, every word resonated completely with me. You have a few days clean and that is a major accomplishment, please be proud of yourself - I think we get so used to thinking of ourselves and actions in such negative ways that we can't see the good in us anymore. Drink, drugs, they seem like secret friends who have been there for us in the worst times - but they're not, and for you to be able to push that away is such an achievement. Its baby steps for now but each of those steps really does mean something good. I wish I could say something to help you feel better, just know you have my support and I know that you can do this. You really can. We're in it together.
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Old 05-16-2013, 09:20 AM
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Good morning Princess, at least it is morning here in Georgia, I see that it is nighttime in Australia so I hope you have a good night and a better and brighter day tomorrow. Thank you for the BIG HUG! I...can..hardly...breathe. I really needed that.

I really wanted to get this off to you yesterday but for some reason the words wouldn't come. I started and stopped, deleted and started again. I don't have a computer at home (I know..hard to believe) and I tried to use my awful old cell phone to post last night but it was hopeless. But I am here now....

I do not have any friends. You were absolutely right, drugs and alcohol became our friends. As my addiction became worse and worse I shut myself off from what few friends I did have. All I needed or wanted were my pills, they were my life, my everything (Sounds sick to say but it's true.) and every second of that life was devoted to them. You know, finding them, taking them, counting them over and over to make sure I had enough to last me till I knew I could get more. I didn't live I just existed.

Now it is time for us to live again.

I hope that you are doing well. You can do it, you can beat this thing. You are still young and still able to have the life you've dreamed of. Have faith and hope and ....i wish you love.
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