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Welcome to my blog. I hope we can help each other endure the pain of the addiction of a daughter or son.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Suboxone Treatment

I was advised that at the levels my daughter was using heroine that she should be observed taking her suboxone for the first few weeks. I watch her take one dose. Her friend watches her take one at noon and she takes her own dose in the middle of the night. Overall she looks pretty good and is trying to keep busy.

Without my alanon experiences I would have insisted that she stay here so I could see the 2 am dose. Or I would have called or who knows what. I was very upset on her third day when I saw her looking very groggy. That is when I called Tom from recovery helpdesk. He said that an observed dose is typical at this stage and that she might even be still using some but that it is likely to resolve if she has the dicipline to keep up the suboxone. ( Well, that is quite a concept!) Actually I have a girlfriend from rehab that told me her daughter tried suboxone several times but that she finally got off heroine when she was willing to come home and have her Mom give her all her doses. I give her exactly the right amount each day. So, she could be diverting one dose but not all three. I will tell you how it goes.

Also, she had cut back from 10 bags of heroine per day to 5 before doing the detox. I saw her during the detox and she looked pretty bad like she had a bad flu. She threw up some. Her muscles and bones hurt all over. She also was taking 50 mg of xanax every 4 hours to keep from screaming into the night. She procured those xanax on her own. The Dr. did not perscribe them. Incidentally, although I was certainly leary about this, I do know that they give the addicts xanax and a lot more when they detox at a medical facility. She knows it too as she has done it about 8 times.

I went to an alanon meeting tonight. I have not been there in several months and the meeting has gotten much smaller. I wonder what happened. It has been a great meeting for the last 5 years. tYou may wonder how I go along with suboxone and alanon. Well, modern alanon and aa is supposed to allow any drugs taken as perscribed by a Dr.  That being said, I have tried the tough love approach and the AA approach and the alanon approach each for long periods of time and got no more than 6 weeks of sobriety. This latest harm reduction, keep my detachment with love but assist in recover as much as I can approach has yielded 9 months clean with a recent relapse.

I do not kid myself though. She stopped herself but she was just lucky not to be arrested. I hope that she did not share needles or put her health at risk in other ways but she probably does not even know all that she did. I actually wanted her to go on methadone or preferably a rehab followed by methadone.The longest periods of sobriety that I have seen in heroine addicts have come from methodone or total aa dedication. Her bipolar disorder does not lend itself to group sharing and participation. That is a fact.

I am not advocating this path but people should know that it exists and many have found sobriety or a law abiding relatively productive life in this way. At this point, I would be very happy with a safe, law abiding, relatively productive life for my daughter.


  1. I left you a long message but it did not seem to post...let me know if you got it?

  2. Whatever method works is a good method. I am not against anything that helps, and since each person is different there have to be different approaches to recovery. I think for Keven its being immersed in a program plus accountability (ie. go to jail when you have a dirty test). I am glad to hear that Beth is making progress and will pray that she continues to. You are a wonderful mother and she is blessed to have someone understanding and supportive and knowledgeable on her side.

  3. I just went to Al-Anon for the first time in a very long time last week and prior to that I think I went to 4 or 5 meetings.

    I heard people speak and also a few people after the meeting and their kids are on different treatment - methadone, etc. I really didn't think that it could be much of a bad thing.

    I guess after years of not believing it was a disease I do finally believe it is. My Sister had (she passed away) Cancer and never would we have thought she shouldn't get her treatments to try to save her life.

    If I were to get Cancer because I smoke even though I know how stupid it is and how it will probably kill me, I would hope that even though I essentially caused it myself that Doctor’s would offer me treatment.

    I guess it truly is a personal decision but everyone is different and some need more help than others and we shouldn’t try to fit all addicts in the same box.

    Hang in there and it is huge that she came to you for help. 9 months thankfully is a long time for someone to experience some joy without their drug of choice. Hugs!!!!

  4. I didn't use to think "harm reduction" was such a good idea but I now feel differently. My counselor and sponsor both agree that there is a place for it. In addition, I read the book, ""In The Realm of Hungry Ghosts" and the author made a very good case for the "harm reduction" program. And I agree with Barbara, whatever works!

    In prayer for your family.

  5. Madyson, I did not get your post. Please email me at Barbara you are just the most encouraging soul I know in spite of the sadness you have known. Tori, I am glad you went to alanon. You will find comfort there and tools to help you focus on yourself.VJ, I am glad that you have an open mind. You have been very sweet to me. I pray for you too. I read the same book and found it scary. More positive information can be found at pathways to recovery. You can google it and read about the work that is being done in the harm reduction area.

  6. My son has been on suboxone since May of 2010. It really has helped him reclaim his life and stay clean. He does see an addiction counselor every other week as well. It was a real struggle deciding with him to use this drug but he had failed previously when he tried to give up opiates so we both decided this was the right path for us. He is down to 8 mg a day and started at about 24 or 32. He works full time and is now leading a productive life. He still seems to struggle with depression but this road of recovery is just a long one and I'm so grateful that he has come this far.

  7. It looks like a long journey. I think there should be a person who takes care of drug addict when getting the addiction treatment. From suboxone treatment virginia beach center my sister is also taking her treatment and I always make sure she has been taking her dose regularly.

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