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Addiction & Recovery Message Board

Addiction & Recovery Board Index

Hello all who read this. Just introducing myself and describing the nightmare I have been through as a result of addiction to drugs in general (I've been addicted to almost all the street drugs available here in the UK and far too many pharmaceutical substances for all of my adult, and a large chunk of my teenage, life), and in particular, opiates/oids.
Two years ago I had finally had enough of Heroin and Crack Cocaine and referred myself to a local CDAT who put me on Subutex (Buprenorphine). I got addicted to Heroin about 10 years ago because of my addiction to Crack Cocaine: I started using it to cope with the 'prang' (come down) that comes part and parcel with smoking Crack. I had a choice, I could have gone on Methadone, again, but was told that Subutex was far safer than either H or Meth and that the withdrawal symptoms created by the cessation of Subutex use in relation to H+Meth were negligible and, if one tapers very slowly, could be virtually non-existant. I bit their hands off and began my Sub use with impunity. For most of the first year I messed about using H now and then along with Crack. After around a year, however, I began to get loads of side effects from the Sub and thought it was because I was messing about with it and by then had been through 2 rehabs (yep, unbelievably I went into my second rehab on 8mg of Sub and walked out 4 months later still on 4mg per day...long story) and had had enough of my lifestyle so got stable on the Sub alone. The side effects remained-insomnia, loss of appetite, intense anxiety, paranoia, and amnesia to name a few. This continued for around 10 months. I was on my second CDAT because of moving around, homelessness, and eviction, however, they really helped me get stable by way of prescribing me a small dose of Temazepam to counter the SEs and managed to get me housed by a council in the lovely bungalow I live in now. The downside of my being housed ( I have been properly homeless far too many times and for too long and got housed mainly because I developed epilepsy through Crack addiction)was that I moved into the catchment area of another, notoriously negligent, CDAT. Without any reference to my history they stopped my Temazepam and the SEs came back with a vengance. I was desperate and 23 days ago took my last dose of 8mg of Sub. 3 days later I was in hell. Having only had experience of H withdrawls (WDs) I exoected to start feeling better after a week at most. How wrong I was. After 14 days I was still feeling acute WDs and thought it would never end. All of the stuff I had been told about the substance was spurious. I was livid with anger. I felt as though my dealer had become a pharm company that were plying me with a drug much worse than H (Methadone is the same) and had got me on it by way of lying to all and sundry about its effects. I was getting absolutely no support at all from my CDAT and was stuck at home alone contemplating my life and ending it there and then. Such is the debilitating nature of Subutex withdrawal and general opiate/oid addiction.
Tonight I am awake once again at 4:30am. I did sleep last night for the first time in 3 weeks so am getting better. Be warned though. If anyone reading this is thinking about substituting Sub for H, it is a good idea as it got me off the street but DON'T STAY ON IT FOR TOO LONG. Get off it ASAP or you may end up in the same boat as I was. It is a short term, detox drug, not a maintenance drug. I have done my research and liased with addicts who have fell foul to this substance in the same way that I have-I am not the only one.
I sincerely hope that this post helps people for that is why I have compiled it.
God bless

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