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Heya, Guys. It's me, Tonnie. I wish this were one of those "___ Days Clean!" messages but alas, no such luck.
I need some help, I know that. But I feel I've exhausted every avenue available to me, as well as tried the patience of my loved ones. My husband of 17 years has given up on me, and I understand completely. My daughters (15, 15, & 14) don't know I'm using again, but they do know I work hard and barely have enough money for cigarettes and gas; they know something's up. I have an 8-year-old son, Andrew, who is the sole reason I'm alive to write this.
A few years ago when my only sibling, my brother Steven, became addicted to oxycontin after a successful surgery, he made the terrible decision to end his life (via shotgun.) The pain that brought to me was so enormous that I cannot stand to do that to my son. Every time I try to gather the courage to act, I imagine what that little face would look like when he was told of the news. It stops me and I am sickened to realize how close I came to hurting that little guy who loves me more than anyone in the world. One one hand I feel he'd be better off without me and on another I'm sure I truly make his life richer; it's confusing.
I honestly don't know if Andrew is merely too young to realize what a loser I am, or he accepts that I have a problem of some sort and loves me just the same. It is for him that I know I have to beat this thing; does anyone know what I mean? I just, you know, I want to be there for him in his life, be a good part of it, make it better.
It may sound strange, but there are NO doctors in Chattanooga who can or will write a prescription for Subutex or Suboxone. Nor are there any within an hour and a half's drive. I did find one in Louden, TN and my husband took me there about four months ago. I found the Suboxone to really help with the withdrawal process, but I blew that, of course. I began just using the Sub whenever I couldn't find or afford any oxys, and now I am out.
I am a waitress at the local Waffle House (tell me THAT's not rock bottom!) I make $2.28/hour plus tips which average $40./ night. I pay $25. apeice for 40mg. oxycontin, which I take daily. If I have it, I'll take 160-200 mgs. of Oxycontin a day. But usually I can afford only the one, which only keeps the withdrawals at bay. This is the drill: I get off work at 6:00am and come home and ready Andrew for school; I drive him at 8:00. Then I get exactly $7.00 in gas to get to my dealer's house and spend $25. for an oxy (on a typical day I can afford only one.) I pick up a pack of smokes on the way home (knowing I'll run out by the day's end, but not being able to buy more than the one pack.) The extra two dollars is Andrew's lunch money. My entire day consists of me snorting and taking orally this one (or two) tablet(s) - seeing how much I have left, worrying I won't save enough to see me through my next shift, etc. God knows that days off are the worst - no work is no money for me, and - well, does anyone know that terrible feeling of waking up and realizing you have nothing to get you through your day? That crushing sense of desperation - oh, I can't put it into words. To say that the amount of oxycontin I have directly affects my daily activities is a horrific understatement, for it controls every single aspect of my life.
Guys, I'm so tired of living this way. Perhaps the only thing worse than this would be the terrible, untolerable withdrawal symptoms, for I would surely not be able to work in my job while going through withdrawal. I just remember when I was forced to go cold turkey some months ago, I remember that terrible smell of - what IS that smell, anyway - of night sweating, perhaps. The feeling that the skin on my legs was crawling away from the rest of my body. The realization that even though the bathroom is only a dozen steps from my computer chair, it was out of the question to muster up the energy for even a shower. Counting minutes, not days. Oh man, I just don't think I can do that again. We told the kids I had the flu back then, and I made it 12 days completely clean. But of course I didn't have to wait on tables and feign cheerfulness like I'd have to do if I tried it now. What a nightmare that would be. Does anyone know what I mean?
Last year I went to an inpatient (10-day) detox program in which I stayed clean for (surprise) exactly ten days. I've attended AA and NA meetings, the former with which I was met with mixed feelings and the latter which proved only a good source of "scoring" for a time. I KNOW these are programs that work, and I enjoy the fellowship of the things. But they never had any lasting benefits for me. I tried the "clear" goal in Christian Scientology which seemed like "the stuff" but was in the end fruitless (Tom Cruise I'm not.) I tried calling the doctor in Louden, TN who'd originally prescribed me the Subutex, but the nurse said that since I never kept my next appointment with him (months ago) his quota of 30 patients was already met indefinitely. I was put on a waiting list I'm pretty sure was promptly taken out with the day's trash.
Guys, I don't even know what I'm asking, I'm (such a loser, what a tremendous loser) I'm just looking for a good word, I guess. A thing I can say is that when I read posts from the good folks who are taking Lortab or Vicoden (hydrocodone), whether it be 5, 7.5, or 10 mgs, I do have a message for you. Please, please get a comfortable taper going and stop. All oxycontin is - well, it's like a Lortab that doesn't wear off for 10 - 12 hours. And oxy isn't such a great leap from hydro - it only takes one, and your mind starts making up reasons to switch and when you've switched, it's a whole different game. All the rules are different - the cost, I mean you'll pay amounts you never thought you would for this stuff. And your way of thinking changes - your mind does a beautiful job of convincing you that you're doing nothing wrong, not really. And your body will no longer respond to one ten milligram Lortab; it'll take at least four, preferrably chewed.
You know, I'm not sure there's any help left for me; if I were a street sign I would definitely read "Dead End." But anyone who's in the "early stages" of hydro addiction, you let YOUR sign read "Stop!" Then do it. Please, I've got no ulterior motive here; nothing to gain whether you use or not. Please know that I'm trying to stop anyone from going through this terrible, terrible process. I turned 41 last Friday but from what I estimate as my life expectancy, I may've just as well turned 91. I am not a stupid person, please hear this. Nor am I easily led, nor do I come from a family with an addictive history - nothing. This was just something I did with my brother for kicks; we'd take a few and listen to Elton John - how harmless was that? The last picture taken of him had to be taken with a wide-angle lens... it's amazing just what a close range shotgun blast can do to a body.
I wish I was asking for advice on a particular treatment - anything - but I don't know what I have left. I think my husband is going to tolerate me until Andrew turns 18, but we have separate bedrooms and barely speak. He says addiction is a choice, not a disease, and he will likely never believe otherwise. It is beyond my parent's scope of reason that I would be using the same drug that killed Steven, that made me their only child. They are understandably disgusted and this is perhaps the one thing we still have in common.
I'm sorry if this wasn't the feel-good post of the day. I swear, I didn't want to bring anyone down. Maybe some "recreational user" will see his or herself in this post and refuse to let this happen to him or her. Or maybe someone will give me some words of hope - I was kind of thinking of a taper, but sure do wonder how you get from, say 40mgs to nothing without losing your mind. I just can't leave half a pill alone to "save" for the next day. I want to, I swear I do, but I take it anyway. This disease is such a mystery to me still.
I apologize for the lengthy post; there was a lot more inside me than I'd realized and I thank you so much for taking the time to listen. Congratulations to those of you who are winning this thing; you've certainly earned my respect; what winners you are!
As was said once and is always relevant,
"God bless us every one."
Your Friend,
Tonnie M.





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