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Opiate addiction Support for coping with Opiate addiction and Opiate addiction treatment.

 
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  #51  
Old 12-03-2012, 16:12
brettjv brettjv is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Caitlin, thanks for reminding me ... exactly how much I *HATE* living on that fucking roller-coaster ... which you described so well

Last time I 'went out' after 3.5 years clean ... I did like 12 pills, and then switched to subs from the doctor. Dumb choice in retrospect, I should've just let the opioids alone, but then ... I'm an addict, always will be.

Anyways, once I started messing with pills again, the FEAR set in almost instantly of ending up back on that roller-coaster of sorrow and ruin and debasement ... I just was like 'get back on subs, and you won't have to worry about it' ... so I did. 8 months later when I stopped, I ended up regretting that decision for a bunch of reasons, but not NEARLY like I would've regretted 8 months back on oxycodone. Mainly cause it was cheap, and I didn't lose my job or house or anything. Nor did I make any 'connections' or acquire 'friends' ... that I would later have to rid myself of.
  #52  
Old 13-03-2012, 03:49
Caitlin23 Caitlin23 is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Well Congratulations on getting off. It's a rough road and it sounds like you've made a lot of progress. Dont get down on yourself in regards to how you kicked... the main thing is that you quit. Which is more than I can say for swim. After 2 and a half years on the juice and even after going thru all that crap mentioned earlier, she messed up and got back on the dope. Currently on day 3 of a really way too quick taper... we'll see how it goes. Stay positive & take care!!
  #53  
Old 13-03-2012, 09:06
supercat supercat is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Good god I envy you for having to ask that question. It largely depends on the type of addiction you suffer from, which is related to which drug youre using. Psychological addiction is often considered less severe than physical addiction because there is no dangerous withdrawal from the drug. I have experienced both and firmly assert that psychological addiction is much more difficult to overcome. It does not stick to the timetable imposed by your bodys metabolism that dictates the length of withdrawal. Instead of knowing you only have to face a certain number of days before you feel tolerable, you have to acknowledge that your desire for the substance will honestly never completely go away. Add the fact that you can mitigate withdrawal symptoms with medication, but the symptoms of psychological addiction typically have no cure because they are manifested in parts of the brain for which we have an incomplete understanding, for instance long term memories with respect to forming a persons understanding of the world. Along with that are highly debilitating symptoms such as depression or other mental health issues, sometimes as severe as schizophrenia from a drug considered totally harmless (weed has been proven to precipitate this illness) An important point that is often left out of discussions on addiction is one of the most discouraging to addicts, namely that we just dont know enough about addiction. Its a disease with no known cure and it can and does end lives.

To be psychologically addicted is a very hard existence to describe. I have tried to capture the feelings in words but repeatedly find myself unsatisfied with what I feel is an incomplete picture.

You start off the same way anyone starts off with drugs. The most common first time drug use is with alcohol or marijuana, both being considered relatively safe and accepted. You either like the experience or you dont, its very black and white. I hated my first experience with alcohol because I got violently sick and spent the next day with a horrendous hangover. I even recorded myself demanding that I never drink again. Your experience, good or bad, is irrelevant. The fact is that you have discovered that your subjective experience of the world can be altered more than you ever imagined. Deep down this is very interesting. Its compelling too, but perhaps not noticeably so. Youve started what is known as an incubation period, which is the time it takes before you become dependent upon the drug. Alcohols incubation period is very long, about ten years, which is why people sometimes dont develop alcoholism until they are in their thirties and forties. Once you start this period, youve tripped a switch, and your addiction will continue to develop, getting progressively worse, any time you use a substance. An important fact to include is that studies have determined that roughly 1 in 10 people are addicts. Drugs dont make them addicts, they are simply born with a different brain chemistry. Mental health issues such as ADHD, anxiety, social phobias, and low self esteem are very common among addicts. Also notable is an addicts high threshold for excitement. Everyday activities typically seem boring, and lifes not fun unless youre the one getting sent to the principals office. Addicts have a hard time sticking to rules and keeping themselves from regularly acting out. They are impulsive. This is not to say that everyone with these characteristics is a future addict, nor to imply that all addicts have these problems. In my case, acting out was a significant problem, and getting attention was something I spent a lot of resources on. I was relatively socially uneasy, and found myself often feeling depressed because life's basics didnt come easily to me. Low self esteem was normal. At the same time I had an outstanding performance record at school and took home a fair number of honors, had no trouble being accepted to academic programs, and was a diligent thorough worker, a perfectionist. The symptoms I exhibited, including things as unremarkable as my difficulty pacing myself with food, books, and anything else that when I eventually finished I would with I had paced myself. I'd be unable to eat just a little bit of candy, and would always eat the whole bag regardless of the consequences. I didnt pick up on it at the time, but this is the exact same behavior that would eventually be key to my drug use. Anyway, once you have experienced intoxication, your curiosity will drive you to try it again. Eventually you will have a collection of positive experiences that will shape your view of the substance. Typically the high from a given substance is much more potent and enrapturing in early experiences, as no tolerance has developed yet and the psyche is experiencing something it is unused to. In an addict, these initial experiences are very profound, potentially life changing and extremely immersive. The addiction will never ever forget these experiences, and will use them to solidify ones subjective reaction to the drug. From this point on these initial uses are all that you are capable of associating with the drug. No matter how devastating the negative experiences will become, the mind tenaciously refuses to let go of the memory. An addict will subsequently create a myth that the next use will be great, or that their negative effects are tolerable. The first several years of drug use are often very romantic, and they become astoundingly difficult to let go of because the drug use is compensating for your shortcomings. Theres no such thing as social anxiety in the presence of stimulants. Everything you werent, you suddenly are. A small amount of money can transform you into a charming, confident, witty, intelligent person, capable of being the life of the party or the focus of all the girls. You have a response to every question, and something to say feels like its being fed to you through an earpiece. Where you might have lacked self confidence, you suddenly love yourself. In a way its the power you feel that addicts you. You can suddenly talk the bartender into giving you a free beer. People envy you and you are very aware of this. Inevitably, though, the drug wears off. At first we can sigh with satisfaction at the thrill of the night, clean ourselves up and go to bed. We might not even repeat the experience for a long time. On the other hand, if we still have a half full bag of drugs, we almost invariably find ourselves concocting excuses to have another go at it. Maybe this time during work. We'll convince ourselves that it will be fine, and it often is. Work flys by and your tips are much higher. Gradually you consider the drug appropriate for everyday use, while simultaneously problems are surfacing. It might take some time to develop health problems, but at this point you are very aware of a phenomenon called tolerance. The dose that made your night a dream barely does anything. You have to use more of the drug, more often to sustain the effect. Effects are becoming less enjoyable, and you begin to recognize painful withdrawal effects if you cant contact your dealer. The increase in drug used begins to manifest itself as a toxicity within the body. Your immune system is weakened to dysfunction, and sickness is more frequent and lasts longer. Your sex life might be in decline despite your stud of an alter ego. At some point, without realizing it, you cross a line that marks where you cease to be envied by anyone and start to be pitied. You can't tell, but its now obvious youre on drugs, and you develop a habit of making inappropriate jokes or generally making people uncomfortable.You probably have lost weight, meaning your features will be more skeletal, and you'll typically neglect self care, so you could be aesthetically displeasing in addition. There is no way whatsoever that you will attribute any of these problems to your drug use. You see your superman self when you look in the mirror. Either consciously or not, you will pawn your accumulating defects off on whatever you happen to have to blame. Sooner or later you will run into trouble with the law. This might hurt your professional life, and its likely that you have already been fired once it became obvious that you had a drug problem. Your financial situation is suddenly out of control, but you find a way against all odds to keep your supply of drugs open. Somewhere in this process you were likely seduced by the promised potency of the needle. Eventually you shoot your first dose, and once you have there is no coming back. What was a bad drug problem before spirals into a catastrophe. Injecting took your previous addiction and doubled it. Besides opening yourself up to more health risks, you end up using more of the drug than ever. Tolerance doesnt spare the needle, and before long you approach and often pass the lethal limit. Your careless with your dosing and rarely if ever use drugs intelligently.

At this point you are probably aware that drugs are a significant problem, and you acknowledge that you are unable to quit. You might not seek help for a long time after this realization, so hang in there. You realize that youve lost a potentially devastating portion of your life. You abandoned your goals long ago. You lost your home. Youre financially a disaster. But the most hurtful loss is the loss of your family and friends, who eventually will grow tired of trying to help you and will no longer contact you. It might be a particularly wounding moment when you are turned away from your parent's house for the first time.

Through all of this you needed to build up several skills to survive. The most important one is lying. As soon as you let someone know about your drug use, you run the risk of them trying to intervene. This is unpleasant. Its a cliche, but you have to be able to lie to yourself, and that becomes second nature. You dont really think about it, but you cant trust yourself at all and have to (but dont) keep yourself from risky situations. You may or may not have experienced an non lethal overdose, and if you havent you arent that far from it. Depending upon the situation, more serious criminal activity might be an option. Besides dishonesty, you need to know how to find your drug, and that improves your ability to rapidly asses people you meet and accurately guess their motives, personality, and how helpful they will be to you. One or two instances of being robbed or cheated has made you hyper vigilant of shady dealings. You learn how to determine potency of different purchases, which is a matter of life or death. You become extremely comfortable with your drug, unconsciously believing it is a close friend. Use becomes so second nature that you rarely give it a thought, and youll defend your drug as safe even in the face of your deteriorating health.

Eventually, what started as a social activity will completely change into something you do on your own in private. Most of the people you used with previously have moved on from drugs, and you have very little use for company who will use your supply, primarily because you have no interest in socializing and care about nothing at all besides staying high. Right up to the point you decide to seek help, you remain incapable of admitting that your drug is problematic and that you most certainly have a problem, Once youve used to this degree, stopping can be physically dangerous, as physical withdrawal can result in seizures and death.Even with detox medications like valium, your looking at the better part of two weeks consumed by absolute misery. This could be much longer if a drug like methadone or seboxin is prescribed, since they will replace the drugs action while you taper off slowly. You face the most uncomfortable feeling coursing throughout your body, known as akathesia, making you want to move, and when you move making you want to be still. This will deprive you of sleep and force you to give it your full attention until its gone. Physical pain of various degrees and flavors will be present, and unfortunately painkillers wont be an option. To make it simple, imagine the utmost physical discomfort gripping your body for days, slowly receding to the point where you can start your real recovery.

You chose from several recovery options which include inpatient rehab centers, 12 step support groups, different support group styles, therapy, concealing, slowly beginning healthy activity, and so forth. The most common is the 12 step, but it gets extremely annoying when you employ two different treatment philosophies and they repeatedly contradict one another. 12 step programs make the weak claim that they are not religiously inclined, even as they recite portions of the bible and employ as many references to god as a sunday sermon, all of which not so subtly imply that god is a single omnicient entity capable of creating and managing the universe. He is assumed to be invested in each of our lives, and refrains from using his power to cure you until you have developed total acceptance of this particular god. I find this all worth mentioning because it certainly has the potential to offend or even alienate people who have slightly more up to date religious views. In any case it is possible to ignore the reliance on religion and simply get support from a group of people who have gone through what you have. This is short of totally effective but it can be helpful. You are sentenced to a severe obsession with your drug for many months to come, where your mind and body call, cajole, and tempt you to just get high one more time. You will make hundreds of plans that facilitate you using your drug. The process is more difficult than any other type of recovery because once again you cannot trust yourself, and frankly are not even on your own side. The statistical probability is that you will experience one or more relapses, going back to your drug. Its discouraging in the extreme that having a relapse instantly erases your progress and puts you right back in the spot you were before you quit last time. Studies conducted on relapse behavior have exposed an interesting phenomenon about relapse, namely that the severity of the addiction is not diminished, regardless of how much time the user has been sober. It doesnt matter if you have ten days or ten years, as soon as you pick back up, you will use with the exact same intensity that you left off with. You will be denied the bliss of starting over. This is compulsive and highly dangerous, because if the body is unused to the substance, ingesting it with the fervor and in the excessive amount that you left off with can lead to an easy overdose, and this is not an uncommon phenomenon. As you slowly make progress and obsess over using less intently, you have to also deal with Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrom. This will cause difficulties like physical unsteadiness, disturbed sleep patterns, depression, a pervasive mental fog, and a number of other unpleasant maladies which will last for up to two years before abating. If you are able to reach the two year mark, there begins to be substantial improvement in your neurotransmitters, meaning that you will start to experience positive emotions from normal healthy activity. Sex becomes as appealing as you remember it, and you have occasional days where not only do you forget about drugs, but you also maintain a fairly good mood.

It has been reported that the longer one stays sober, the easier it becomes. This is paired with the observation that you cant force yourself to forget, and for the rest of your life you will be spontaneously triggered to have a nostalgic desire to do it just one more time.

I have a habit of creating posts that are a good deal beyond the 'too long' mark, and approach upsetting, ridiculous, and possibly comical dimensions if one considers them for what they are, side effects of amphetamine use! I base all this info on personal experience and several books I have read. I have been trying to stay sober for two years and have frequented rehab centers and various sober living communities, but no matter what, I cant keep myself away from amphetamine. Ill try tomorrow though.

supercat added 12 Minutes and 24 Seconds later...

Thats a post and then some. Actually thats a post and then way more than some. I see shit like that and there is no way I would consider reading it. So if you read that monster, let me know if it makes sense! Lord knows I wont re-read it!

But here are two additional thoughts: Drugs are only one of many serious addictions you can develop. People quite frequently suffer from compulsions such as gambling, overeating, sex, and so forth, all of which deserve mention and can be very serious.

I consider cigarrettes to be in a class of their own. The definitely produce both forms of addiction, mental and physical, and its purported to be the most difficult addiction to overcome, but smoking has almost undetectable effects and produces no high, but yet I want one quite badly at the moment and plan on pursuing this inclination. It would be very difficult for me to reverse this decision. Also I am quite willing to ignore tangible risk of premature death for something that tastes foul, smells worse, carries a social stigma, and is unattractive enough that its required to disclose the habit in online dating conditions. Addictions always charge you something you should never pay. Food for thought.

supercat added 5 Minutes and 18 Seconds later...

I suppose this also reveals newb status by its slight irrelevance to the OP. Consider forgiving a tweaked out malnourished person such as myself. Im really out this time. No more talking. Im departing. Closing the laptop.

Post Quality Evaluations:
very accurately describes the process of addiction ... great job!
really descriptive, accurate explanation of addiction. good post. more paragraphs would be great though.
Very detailed and vivid description of addiction, fantastic post
I think you explained psychological addiction to a T. Awesome post!
very good information it hit home

Last edited by supercat; 13-03-2012 at 09:06. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
  #54  
Old 13-03-2012, 15:23
brettjv brettjv is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Hey great description, SuperCat ... spot on mate!

Next time though, maybe breaking it up into smaller paragraphs ... that makes a long post like this one ... a lot easier to read through

Oh, and I have one more to add to your list of other addictions ... anger addiction. Someone very close to me suffers from this ... so to me it's very real, even if 'medicine' wouldn't see/classify it as such. This person has a need to regularly go through the process of extreme anger ... followed by crying, followed (usually) by contrition over the way they acted ... it's very much like an addiction. They also maintain a lot of resentments towards various people ... it's kinda like the resentments are their 'dealer', they can always be called upon to provide the 'high', when it suits them to do so.

Last edited by brettjv; 13-03-2012 at 15:32.
  #55  
Old 13-03-2012, 15:48
tmull12 tmull12 is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Its fun until you wake up every morning withdrawing and needing your dope feeling like complete shit. You cant do ANYTHING without opiates once your addicted. Your not gonna eat, sleep, be active, social or just about anything in the world will suck because dope has you by the balls. Never try heroin, worst mistake of my life. Also if you are addicted to roxxies, opanas, vicodin etc. do not do dope because its stronger and cheaper. Eventually youll hate your life only bangin dope to stop withdrawals and dont ever get high anymore.
  #56  
Old 13-03-2012, 20:32
supercat supercat is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Quote:
Originally Posted by brettjv View Post
Hey great description, SuperCat ... spot on mate!

Next time though, maybe breaking it up into smaller paragraphs ... that makes a long post like this one ... a lot easier to read through

Oh, and I have one more to add to your list of other addictions ... anger addiction. Someone very close to me suffers from this ... so to me it's very real, even if 'medicine' wouldn't see/classify it as such. This person has a need to regularly go through the process of extreme anger ... followed by crying, followed (usually) by contrition over the way they acted ... it's very much like an addiction. They also maintain a lot of resentments towards various people ... it's kinda like the resentments are their 'dealer', they can always be called upon to provide the 'high', when it suits them to do so.
Anger didn't addict me as much as it just showed up at the wrong times and built upon itself until I was consumed. I think I would have to actively want the anger to consider it addicting. It sure used to be a problem for me though, and as soon as I was prescribed mood stabilizers it vanished and hasnt been heard from since. Im a legitimately chill dude now. Party on wayne.
  #57  
Old 13-03-2012, 21:21
Gutterballz Gutterballz is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

A slave who is in an abusive relationship at the same time.
  #58  
Old 14-03-2012, 00:47
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Opiate addiction is like a living hell once you get over the honeymoon period and the honeymoon period usually comes to an end either when you run out of money and realize you need opiates to stay well and not get dope sick or when the novelty wears off and again you realize you need it rather then just want.

SWIM found that no activity other then shooting more dope, hustling for money or going to score dope was in my line of thought as for leading a normal life that was right out the question it was only when SWIN started on a methadone script that SWIM started doing normal things again but still methadone has its own downsides and is even harder to get off then smack imo
  #59  
Old 14-03-2012, 03:55
brettjv brettjv is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Quote:
Originally Posted by supercat View Post
Anger didn't addict me as much as it just showed up at the wrong times and built upon itself until I was consumed. I think I would have to actively want the anger to consider it addicting. It sure used to be a problem for me though, and as soon as I was prescribed mood stabilizers it vanished and hasnt been heard from since. Im a legitimately chill dude now. Party on wayne.
To be clear, when I said 'your list', I didn't mean your personal list of addictions you have ... you listed few things there that 'people' in general can 'get addicted to', so I was just adding that general list

It's funny though, how everything becomes 'about us' when we're addicts, isn't it?
  #60  
Old 14-03-2012, 05:55
Relapse_Rollercoaster Relapse_Rollercoaster is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

To put it quite simply.....NO! You cannot live a truly normal life, and are always worried about running out, and being sick. It is shackles & chains in my life. Affecting every single aspect of it. It is debilitating and far from a good time.
  #61  
Old 14-03-2012, 08:48
Black Transit Blues Black Transit Blues is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

If addiction really is a disease then I think it relates most closely to obsessive compulsive disorder.I have actually seen this debilitating illness in the flesh so to speak,

Years ago I knew a girl who was a Heroin addict, but it wasn't her only problem.Unless she was dead set on the nod this chick could go maybe five minutes tops without washing her hands.

She had horrible rashes all over her claws from constantly washing them, put quite simply she was "addicted" to washing her hands - it was very painful to watch.
  #62  
Old 14-03-2012, 18:23
supercat supercat is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Quote:
Originally Posted by brettjv View Post
To be clear, when I said 'your list', I didn't mean your personal list of addictions you have ... you listed few things there that 'people' in general can 'get addicted to', so I was just adding that general list

It's funny though, how everything becomes 'about us' when we're addicts, isn't it?
The act of getting high is selfish to a point. You're trying step outside the world everyone else is a part of, and do nothing but make yourself feel good. When it gets to be the only thing you care about, then the only thing you care about is yourself.

I think your right, any mind state can be addicting.

Have you heard of that show about strange addictions where they show people who compulsively eat lint or something?
  #63  
Old 15-03-2012, 16:37
brettjv brettjv is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Yup, I agree SC. And I've heard of that show, but never watched it. Sounds ... interesting. Everybody has their issues, let's face it

And allow me to also add ... OVER THE LINE!!!

@BTB ... I think of addiction as a chronic disease because 1) it's a persistent malfunction of a bodily process or organ (i.e. your brain), and 2) the symptoms and outcomes are quite predictable and consistent across nearly all individuals.

Obviously, it's not a communicable disease, there's no 'germ' or actual infection involved, but it's just as much a disease as schizophrenia, cancer, copd, diabetes, RA, heart disease, etc.

I.E. there's no infectious/germ component involved in any of those, but they're considered 'diseases' cause there's some necessary component of your bodily functioning ... that simply doesn't work right anymore, and the symptoms are consistent and predictable. That's what's going on with addiction as well.

Last edited by brettjv; 15-03-2012 at 16:49.
  #64  
Old 16-03-2012, 02:10
Black Transit Blues Black Transit Blues is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

To play devil's advocate, I know there is a British Pychiatrist who writes under the psuedonym of Theodore Dalrymple, who has written a book called "Romancing Opiates".

I have not read the book but I have seen excerpts from it, and he scoffs at the idea that opiate addiction is a disease.Dalryple claims that ultimately opiate addiction is a lifestyle choice and that people stay clean when they discover something better to do with their spare time/money.

He states that opiate addiction is really an existential problem not a medical one, and that medical intervention is really a waste of time.As some one who in NA terms has been an active addict most of my adult life I don't think that his position is entirely indefensible.

The idea that addiction is a disease is appealing to us addicts because to some extent it absolves us of responsibilty for our actions past or present "hey man it's not my fault i've got this disease" - I've heard it at NA meetings.

I'm not sure anologies with a disease like schizophrenia really hold water,you can choose not use drugs, if you couldn't no one would ever stay clean - you can't choose not to have schizophrenia the anti psychotic meds either work or they don't work - you are really irrelevant to the diseases progression.

Is addiction a disease? I think there are kernels of truth on both sides of the debate.
  #65  
Old 16-03-2012, 16:57
brettjv brettjv is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

To be sure, there are defensible points to be made at both sides of that debate. I'd say it's highly tenuous to argue that one has a 'disease' PRIOR to their indulging in opiates to excess.

However, once one has actually done so, I don't think there's any doubt that one has changed normal brain and bodily function into a state of dysfunction, at least insofar as the tendency to have obsessive thoughts about continuing a detrimental behavior ... persists, and the potential in such persons to become quickly re-addicted (in no small part because withdrawals come about much quicker than they do with opioid-naive persons) if the drug is consumed in the future ... also persists.

In the end, it's mostly academic. As long as you realize that you once you've made yourself an 'addict' (or an alcoholic) through excessive use, you will have a 'condition' that persists the rest of your life (even if the obsession goes away, the potential for quick re-addiction does not) ... then you've grasped what's 'important'.

Whether or not this is technically a 'disease' I'll leave to the experts, but it is most certainly a 'chronic condition', much like, as you mentioned, OCD is.

As far as 'what we tell ourselves' ... I think it's highly beneficial in the long run for our recovery that we're 1) able to forgive ourselves for what we've done, and 2) have a handy euphemism to describe our collective 'condition'.

If the 'disease' definition helps stop an addict from being too hard on themselves in the service of recovery, then I think it's a 'good thing'. If they use it in service of saying 'fuck it, I have a disease so I'm helpless' ... then it's a bad thing. But even without their grasping that particular definition or word, people still say fuck it, all the time, so ... I think overall it's a handy descriptor, regardless of whether it medically 'qualifies' in every doctor or scientist's mind.
  #66  
Old 08-04-2012, 07:29
usually0 usually0 is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

I only read a few, but so many people seem to imply that opiate addiction makes choices for you. To a non-user this seems kind of a ridiculous scare tactic meant to scare people. I find it hard to believe. Although I've used a few opiates to get high, I don't know what it's like to be addicted to them because personally I don't really like them, there just good for a buzz when I don't have any weed.

But I've been addicted to ciggarettes and understand how addiction really controls you, but I don't think my addiction was making choices for me. For example, I'd spend lots of money on ciggarrettes instead of other things, I'd sneak out to smoke, I'd pull missions to the convience stores and stuff, but how does it make me do things? I don't understand that. All of my decisions while addicted to ciggarettes are my own decisions, I stand by them. While someone might say why would you split you food money up for ciggarettes? I would say that it was my choice because I valued ciggarrettes almost as much as I valued food, I needed both. Now I wouldn't say nicotine made me spend money onn cigs, I did it because I wanted too.

In all of this, I firmly believe you still have concious control under an addiction. If you didn't then addiction could used in courts to show that defendants weren't in control of their actions, the addiction was. But, I don't think that's true. Although, I don't have experience with opiate addiction, it just seems irrational to conclude addiction controls your behaviours and makes you do things.

Another example, I use methylphenidate almost daily for ADD, while I take it to get high once a week to get high. While it's not an addiction, I'm not planning on stopping either. But I'm 100% sure I'm not going to buy methyphenidate off the streets or rob a pharmachacy to get some pills. That's just not what I want to do, I don't see how my view on that can change. Then again, I've never ran out of pills either and stop frequently so this will probaly never be a problem, but even if it does, those two options I'm considering, I'd just stop until I get more, or not run out in the first place.

usually0 added 1 Minutes and 31 Seconds later...

I'm not jsut posted to be a devil's advocate. I just want a mature discussion, so feel free to tell me why I'm wrong, because I don't understand. I think this will help the thread starter understand opiate addiction a little better.

Last edited by usually0; 08-04-2012 at 07:29. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
  #67  
Old 09-04-2012, 15:57
brettjv brettjv is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Trust me, usually0 ... once someone is addicted to opioids, they certainly no longer feel like 'they' are making the 'choice' to use opioids anymore. You have to understand that you get VIOLENTLY ill for at least a week when you stop after any considerable 'run' on this type of drug. It's the most miserable thing most people will ever experience unless they get cancer or get hit by a car or something along those lines.

Once you're hooked on opioids, the die is pretty much cast. You can no longer wake up in the AM and just kinda go "Oh, hey, should I do dope today, or should I just ... not?!?"

It ain't like you can just arbitrarily decide not to use. You feel like you absolutely MUST, otherwise ... well, I'm going to re-iterate this again ... if you're really strung out, running out of your shit and getting dopesick is friggin UNBELIEVABLY miserable. It is INCREDIBLY difficult to simply 'will' your way through and just 'stop'. Why do you think 'rehab' is such a booming friggin industry, and why our jails are chock-full of drug addicts? It's because the choice has to be made FOR THEM, and they must be locked up ... otherwise, they're not capable of stopping.

Feeling like you no longer have the option to NOT use ... that's ... uh ... kinda the definition of addiction, know what I mean? If you still feel like you truly have a 'choice', take it or leave it, that kind of thing? Then you aren't addicted. YET.

And BTW, the excuse of drug addiction is 'used' in courts every fucking day by defense attorneys. However, the law is the law. Being an addict is not considered a 'valid' reason to hit someone over the head and steal their money. It simply CANNOT be 'acceptable' as an 'excuse' for breaking the law and hurting someone else ... it'd be anarchy. But that doesn't change the fact that the person's addiction WAS EXACTLY why they hit that person over the head and took their money. The two are not mutually exclusive, in other words.

Let me ask you this ... if someone hadn't eaten for a week, and they felt like they were going die if they didn't steal some food, so they stole some food ... would you 'accept' the idea that the person had no choice anymore ... they did what they did because they were starving? Because when you're addicted to opioids, it feels exactly the same way to you. Like it's a life or death situation ... that is the 'message' being sent your conscious mind from your primitive, survival-based brain parts. It basically feels identical to how you'd feel if you hadn't had any food or water for days on end. That's how powerful opioid addiction is. Literally.

And just because a court of law would still say 'too bad, you're not allowed to steal food' ... doesn't mean that the person's desperation wasn't directing their actions, and that they felt like they had no choice but to do what they did. Your need for dope becomes like your need for food and water once you're addicted to it. In fact, people sacrifice eating so they can have their dope ... happens all the time, everyday.

In fact, you ever heard of those experiments where they hook rats up to a morphine IV, and they put two buttons in their cage whereby every 8 hours or whatever they can pick the button that gives them a shot of morphine, or a food pellet ... and within like a month or two, they ALL end up dead of starvation, without fail?

That oughta tell ya something about the power of what we're dealing with here ...

And before you say something like "but hey, those are RATS ... they aren't PEOPLE ... they aren't smart enough to know better!" ... you should also consider that a) rat's probably don't have 'emotional/psychological issues' like people who turn to drugs so often do. Rats also probably don't commit suicide cause they're depressed, that kind of thing, and b) Not all people die like all the rats die. That's evidence of some degree of 'power' we have over the situation that they do not. However, many people most certainly do die from addiction ... ergo, we are not ALL so different from the rats, after all.

Last edited by brettjv; 09-04-2012 at 16:48.
  #68  
Old 09-04-2012, 22:42
Khrysus Khrysus is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

It just snuck up on me. One day i'm telling myself, "I'm not really addicted, I can stop when I want to.." To making my main goal everyday making sure I have enough pills to get through.. It's sad really. Through away my friends, my girl, my life on these dumb pills because I wasn't strong enough in the head and I needed some kind of personal escape from my already depressing life. And I just took it too far.. Selling my stuff just to buy overpriced pills.. Severing friendships for them, only making time for these pills that run your life once you get addicted, and so you don't have to experience the horrible withdrawal symptoms.. I finally had enough.. I'm done and i'm currently going through withdrawal and telling myself that life with pills isn't a life that anyone should want. It just makes you feel like your doing great when it's really only the pills that make it feel that way..
  #69  
Old 10-04-2012, 09:32
eisenheim eisenheim is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Addiction is definitely over-dramatized in the media and presented a way that demonizes the users, rendering them as evil zombies incapable of any desires and intentions other than the desire to get high. From what I've seen in reality and experienced myself, however, that is simply not the case. Addict is an addict is an addict is simply not true. Some people have been given potent opiates during surgeries yet they have not turned into drug-seeking zombies. Some people have experimented with opiates. Some people have used for long periods of time and experienced accordingly painful withdrawals.

Some people have (SWIM being one of those people) intentionally induced mild withdrawals to feel what it's like. Those same people have concluded that withdrawal is unpleasant and can be compared to a painful heartbreak combined with physiological issues (insomnia, sneezing, chills, sweats) combined with anxiety similar to anxiety from a bad trip from psychedelics.

SWIM should say that he experimented with opiates for about two years but he was rather smart about it, taking breaks whenever tolerance rose. The drive to use can be compared to the urge for sex -- SWIM can suppress it or control it. Hopefully this explains the rationale of addicts.

Again, some people rape others but it doesn't mean all people with a libido are rapists, does it? Being exposed to opiates sort of introduces an "opiate libido". Imagine if sex was illegal, flirting with women was illegal, looking at women was illegal. That's what it feels like to be an opiate addict.

It feels like being gay in 1940s.

Last edited by eisenheim; 10-04-2012 at 09:58.
  #70  
Old 10-04-2012, 21:09
ratgirldjh ratgirldjh is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

my rat wants to add her story here since she has been chipping and is now stopping and feels the need to write it down to make her remember...

my rattie girl was in her early 30's and newly married to another artist and bass player in a local band. since my rattie and her husband were pretty much both rich kids with inheritances she had money and a nice artist's loft to make art in and nice cars and everything was cool.

they both loved the idea of the beatnick lifestyle and got interested in reading william burrough's books and then of course wanted to try heroin to see if it would improve their art.

already they did coke. everywhere around them did coke on a regular basis and my rattie and her husband shot a lot of coke for a period of time. this got to be pretty bad for them and they got bored with it finally and so enter heroin.

at a party they met a guy who was handing out balloons as party favors. they took theirs home and shot them. they fell in love immediately with what they later remembered as 'the black velvet world' that heroin seems to weave around them. immediately the next day they set out looking for more and of course having money they decided to find it wholesale. lol

sooo... they got a bunch of tar. this continued for quite a long time (years) until little by little their money ran out. both of their families got sick of never seeing them and they had to start selling their possessions. neither of them had really ever worked much more than in college or high school and neither had job experience really - so they didn't even think of finding jobs! they got by by selling jewelry they made and some of their art work.

things got too tough. they had to move into a shitty apartment after a few more years and by this time all they did was score and do heroin and nod and then run out and get more. they ran out of money and so they started selling to get free dope.

by this time the friends they had for ever had given up on them and they had new 'druggie' friends. all activities involved scoring, selling or doing heroin. my rattie girl even worked as a dominitrix to get quick money.

their veins wore out and the started doing IM shots and they both got a lot of abcesses.

several times they quite on methadone (by doing it 7 - 10 days) and then would always end up going back to the H.

finally they got robbed at gun point in their apartment by some street kids who knocked her bf out and broke my rattie girl's nose - however she did not give up the dope. but they had to move into a school bus on her dad's land behind a pool hall because they got kicked out of their apartment over the robbery. (another step down)...

after this they realized they needed to stop. so they went back on methadone for the 10 days and stopped again and were clean. a few months being clean they were doing good and things were starting to look up. their families were talking to them again and they were making art and still selling jewelry but now were actually serious about it. and they got an apartment again.

then my rattie girl's husband died suddenly from an infected abcess from the IM that they had been doing before.

this threw my rattie girl into a downward spiral and all she did is H and more H and finally had to be rescued from her apartment by her father and taken to his house to be taken care of! she went on methadone and stayed on it for a couple of years and slowly got her life back together.

after this she went to LA and kicked methadone and proceeded to get addicted to speed... but this is a different story with a much better outcome

it all boils down to: it starts out fun but then it is a living hell. unless you want to always be thinking about heroin and where, how to get it etc.. and be forever chasing that first high - IT NEVER IS AS GOOD AGAIN AS THAT FIRST TIME>>> don't do it. it ruined my rattie girl's nice life and she lost her husband because of it

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a heartfelt and personal post...thank you for sharing it

Last edited by ratgirldjh; 10-04-2012 at 21:16.
  #71  
Old 11-04-2012, 06:54
Puppydog09 Puppydog09 is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Addiction for me is about a substance-whatever that is, taking over your life. You think about it constantly- have I got enough? When can I get more? Who can I get more from, the lying, the cheating, the constant thought that you need that drug. It's all encompassing, it takes over. That's how it is for me!
  #72  
Old 11-04-2012, 17:13
brettjv brettjv is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Quote:
Originally Posted by eisenheim View Post
Addiction is definitely over-dramatized in the media and presented a way that demonizes the users, rendering them as evil zombies incapable of any desires and intentions other than the desire to get high. From what I've seen in reality and experienced myself, however, that is simply not the case. Addict is an addict is an addict is simply not true. Some people have been given potent opiates during surgeries yet they have not turned into drug-seeking zombies. Some people have experimented with opiates. Some people have used for long periods of time and experienced accordingly painful withdrawals.

Some people have (SWIM being one of those people) intentionally induced mild withdrawals to feel what it's like. Those same people have concluded that withdrawal is unpleasant and can be compared to a painful heartbreak combined with physiological issues (insomnia, sneezing, chills, sweats) combined with anxiety similar to anxiety from a bad trip from psychedelics.

SWIM should say that he experimented with opiates for about two years but he was rather smart about it, taking breaks whenever tolerance rose. The drive to use can be compared to the urge for sex -- SWIM can suppress it or control it. Hopefully this explains the rationale of addicts.

Again, some people rape others but it doesn't mean all people with a libido are rapists, does it? Being exposed to opiates sort of introduces an "opiate libido". Imagine if sex was illegal, flirting with women was illegal, looking at women was illegal. That's what it feels like to be an opiate addict.

It feels like being gay in 1940s.
Not entirely sure the point you're making, but I think I mostly agree

I will make a few comments though ... there are also people who never touched opioids (and sometimes NO drugs, basically) before that surgery you speak of (or whatever led them to legally start taking them), and DID end up raging addicts anyways. We see it reported on this board frequently.

In your list of w/d symptoms, you left one thing out ... friggin PAIN. Maybe you never had bad enough w/d's, but I'm here to tell ya, when in bad w/d's, you friggin HURT like a motherfucker man. Especially in your back.

Lastly, I don't wanna sound like a smart-ass, but ... you're 20 years old. Talk to me when you're 40, let's see how 'smart' this opioid experimenting has turned out to have been

I didn't start messing with opioids 'til I was in my early 30's, and it took me like 7 years before I was legitimately hooked ... playing around with them recreationally is easy at first ... but I'm here to tell ya ... by doing so, you're changing yourself ... your setting the proverbial stage for the development of serious problem a little further down the line. It's NEVER 'smart' to screw with opioids for 'fun'. Please trust me on this ...
  #73  
Old 12-04-2012, 16:00
Black Transit Blues Black Transit Blues is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

Eisenheim - I agree with brettjv, messing around with strong opiates is not worth the gamble.

I am always suspicious of absolutes and I am sure if you searched around this big bad world of ours you will find people who have managed to use opiates for decades and never evolved into "complusive users" they have been able to use opiates to relax in the same way your average Joe Blow drinks beer/wine.

I am also pretty certain that as a proportion of the worlds population that have used opiates for recreational purposes there numbers would be very low.In simple terms the probability that you will remain one of them is very low.

This family of drug has an addiction profile similar to Tobacco, sure there are a small number of people out there who can have the odd cigar every now and then but are not addicted but most people who smoke Tobacco get addicted to it.Sure the strength of the addiction can vary, some smoke five a day others fifty (I read the other day that at his worst David Bowie was an eighty a day man) but addicted you are.

Opiates are the same, most people who use them more than a handful of times do end up with a habit, not all end up shooting whole weights every four hours, some end up worse than others, but they end up with a habit that is very hard to break.

Black Transit Blues added 24 Minutes and 38 Seconds later...

I must add this is where the analogies between the two drugs end. Tobacco addiction can certainly shorten your life and possibly make the last few years of it thoroughly miserable, is enough of a drain on the finances to be a concern if you do not earn really big money, and can be a cause for slight embarrassment in polite company,other than these negatives and the fact you will never be as fit all things being equal as a non smoker - life goes on as per usual.

Opiate addiction for a variety of mainly obvious reasons starts to completely fuck up your life from the moment it starts to bite, and if you are shooting dope can end it any time in not much more than the blink of an eye.

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Well reasoned post

Last edited by Black Transit Blues; 12-04-2012 at 16:00. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
  #74  
Old 12-04-2012, 18:07
ratgirldjh ratgirldjh is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

love your post supercat

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would better have been a rep comment... oneliners are frowned upon...
  #75  
Old 12-04-2012, 18:53
brendog brendog is offline
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Re: Whats it like to be addicted?

I'm on day 7 no opiates after a 8 month run/relapse. I'm kinda losing my mind though. i haven't had more than 3 hours sleep at a time all week. somedays none at all. i feel like I'm out of the woods though, but i NEED a solid sleep. even after popping 150mg of dph, nothing. normally 50mg of dph would knocked me out for minimum 8 hours. between days 3 and 5 all i could do was call some friends or my girl and cry like a child. kinda embarrassing. i tried to go for a walk a couple times and BARELY made it back home. it took all of my will and strength to not collapse in the street. anyways good news is i still haven't drank in a year and a half. this time i need to make sure i don't relapse and pick up a habit again, cuz i CANNOT go through this again, i just don't have the strength.

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