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Hi underground,

Thanks for your stepson had other issues, however, the severity of w/ds simply sent him over the edge. While I was in the throws of the worst of the w/ds, I was able to understand why he did it though, and forgive him. Everyone's experience with methadone w/ds are different...mine were so bad, I think, because of the high dose I was on, the rapid taper, and the length of time I was on it. The clinic I went to would only taper me down 1-3 mgs. a week and at that rate, it would have taken a couple of years (at $350/mth too), so spending $18 grand was a lot, but I just wanted my life back.

And Corissa, it is a great drug that really does work for opiate addiction, but I wish I had known more about it before I went into it, and I really did feel I had researched it was people's personal experiences that I wish I'd heard. Folks just really need to know what they're getting into with methadone. It's really not something to consider taking if you want to use medication only temporarily to treat opiate addiction; in fact, most people at the clinic I went to had been on it for anywhere from 10 to 30years and many addictionologists will tell you it's a lifetime drug. It works, but I just couldn't stand being bound to that drug and the clinic anymore...not being able to go out of town, having to go every day....some people drove 2 or or more hrs. a day to just to get there, holidays, blizzards, sick as a dog with whatever, having to bring their little kids with them, you name it...every day.

Underground, in hindsight, if I had known then what I know now, I would definitely have gone the suboxone route. Because I was on methadone, I must have called at least 20 rehabs before I found one that would take me at the high dose I was on; the rest would only take people who were on 30-35 mgs. of methadone so they could be switched over to suboxone to finish the detox. One thing I've heard repeatedly from doctors and people who've gone through it, is DON'T do the 24-hr. rapid detox (I think it's 24 hrs...maybe 48?); I'm not too clear on the actual procedure...I believe it involves sedation and an IV nutrient solution...but I've heard the w/ds are just as bad as going cold turkey.

The worst thing about the prolonged withdrawals is the chronic dr. said it could take up to 2 yrs. for it to return to "normal," but I guess when a person is on a drug that strong for that long, well, it's not likely their body chemistry will ever return to completely normal. He'll only give me 15 ambien a month because of my history and because it can be habit-forming...what I can't get him to understand is that one ambien only gives me two hrs of sleep at a stretch, so I usually don't even bother taking them. He's tried a couple other things, but no luck with them either. I will admit I bought some benzos off the street and that's how I first slept for 4 hours straight. Seems another prolonged symptom is still having a very high tolerance to drugs. I've since had 2 scope procedures done where they usually use a drug called Versed (sp?) to induce a "twilight" kind of sleep where you're awake but unaware of what's going on, but I had to go under general anesthesia since the versed didn't take.

Good luck, and I really recommend the longest, slowest taper you can afford to do...but if you have to just jump in and go for it, get as prepared mentally and practically as you can (have someone to stay with you, stock up on the things you'll need, and get ready to hunker down for one hell of a ride), and focus on the freedom at the truly is so, so worth it.

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