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Addiction & Recovery Message Board

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So bittersweet...
May 8, 2007
Hi there, my first post on this part of the forums...

I've been taking both Effexor XR and Ativan since 2003 now, since I was 17 years old. It's really bittersweet because, at the time I was such a wreck... I was hurting myself a lot (I used to break my knuckles on anything hard enough I could hit over and over, cutting myself, etc). After a few months of the Effexor, I never once hurt myself again... but it's been four years since I've been on this stuff, and I hate it.

I don't want to stop taking it, because I'm afraid of what I might be like.. what if I go back to my old ways? I've heard people saying that things like Ativan are one of the hardest drugs to stop taking, but to me it's very easy. I get 90 a month, and I always run out because I've become so dependent, that sometimes I take 2 or 3 in order to keep anxiety attacks at bay. But Effexor... Just a few hours without it, and my brain feels like it's being electrocuted, and I find myself totally incapacitated.

Not only am I on those two drugs, but I've also been taking Tylenol 4's for almost two years now. These too I always run out of, because instead of being able to take 3 a day for the RSD in my foot, I end up taking 4 or 5. This leaves me about a 5 day window at the end of the month without them where I just want to go crazy! My body aches, I feel depressed, I can't eat... I hate it.

And when the withdrawal symptoms finally go away, I'm back to the doctor and getting my prescription again, and then it starts all over again. I really was looking into trying Oxycontin for my pain, since it's more of a long-lasting painkiller instead of short-term like the T4's... but I don't want to feel addicted to those either... it's hard enough with the Codeine withdrawal's but I don't know what else to do. Without any painkillers, I'm in such extreme pain.. Even with them, I'm in pain.. I don't go anywhere. I leave the house once every other week, and it's always for a doctor appointment. And I feel like a zombie all the time on these pills.. but I feel even worse without them.

I have come a long way, as I used to take 300mg of Effexor a day, and now I'm down to 150mg. And Ativan's I can live without having the withdrawal... The worst physical feelings are Effexor withdrawal, but the worst mental feeling is the Codeine withdrawal.

I don't even know why I'm writing all of this... I guess it's just to really admit to myself that I am in fact addicted to these drugs, but I am not ashamed of it... because they have helped me, and I've come a long way.

Also... My father is a very heavy drinker. He drinks a lot of beer, as soon as he gets home from work, he starts and doesn't stop until he goes to sleep... It worries me so much, because I worry about his liver. But when I tell him, I always bring up the fact that I'm addicted to cigarettes... which are killing my lungs, so I understand how you can't just quit. (Especially since he's been drinking for I would assume over 30 years, and I've been smoking for only 3).. but it's just so hard to watch and deal with, I hate it...

Addiction really is not a fun thing to go through, or witness.. and I notice it in so many people these days. Not even just drugs or alcohol, but other things like food, video games (I admit, I am addicted to video games.. I play one certain game from the moment I wake up, until the moment I fall asleep.. atleast 10 hours a day). My friend is addicted to eating, but he doesn't gain weight (Lucky..) but you wouldn't believe how much this kid eats!

My friends always get on my case because of the pills I take. My best friend is hardcore anti-drugs. He is against all types of pills, he won't even take aspirin for headaches.... so it's hard to relate to someone in person about my prescription drug addictions, because I'm the only person I know who is even on one medication...

It's bittersweet also to come on here and hear about so many people with addictions, but at the same time.. it comforts me that I'm not alone..

So thanks for listening... and hopefully one day, I will be able to be off all of these medications for good!

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