Tuesday, 3 May 2011

This Blog...

Needs a new name I think!

Initially I wanted to write about using Ibogaine to stop my cycle of addiction to heroin, but I now seem to be documenting my battle with my addiction and my various attempts at getting clean, and maintaining abstinence...

As such, I want to write a bit about a previous attempt at detox, I got clean around 2006 using methadone. And as this seems to be the only option available to most people I want to say it can be done! 
At the end of the day it comes down to willpower and determination, and unfortunately these are two things that can-not be forced.

So, here is the story of how I got clean (and stayed clean for two years) using methadone and subutex.

By the age of twenty six, I had been using heroin for nearly ten years. I was at this point, homeless and begging on the streets for cash every day to support my habit. 
I befriended an American girl and we used to work together as two people is better than one when it comes to begging.
I guess we hung around together for about a year.. We would wake up, have our morning hit and go begging, get £40 together, which would take a few hours, then go and score, have a hit and go back out do the same again for the evening money. Out of this we would make sure we either saved enough gear for our morning hit (the most important one of the day) or have enough cash left over to score in the morning..

This went on, day in, day out for what seemed like forever, it's soul destroying, everything would revolve around using heroin, and getting the cash to buy it.
It got to the stage where I was so sick of it I decided to go to my GP and get a methadone script and clean up.
I guess the old cliche of having to hit rock bottom is true, as it took me getting to the stage of having nothing to actually want to clean up.
I offered to share my script with her if she wanted to clean up too but she wasn't ready, we ended up having a screaming row and we parted ways.
I literally stopped using that day, and I didn't touch heroin again for three and a half years.
I went through a period of being ill while we found a dose of methadone I was stable on, 120mls I believe.

Within a month I started to reduce my dose, and believe me I felt every drop, Id drop 1ml and wouldn't sleep well for a few days, once I felt OK again I'd drop another 1ml, hence why it took eighteen months to get off the stuff.
I also had to split dose as it never held me for the full 24 hours. This was fine when I was on high doses, eg on 60mls I'd have 30mls when I woke up, and 30mls around 6pm.

When I got down to 10mls I hit 'the brick wall' people talk of, when it's difficult to get any lower, plus having to split dose, 5ml and 5ml twice a day it was getting harder and harder to measure it.
I talked to my GP and we decided to swap me onto Subutex for the last bit of the taper. 
The swap was difficult, because of methadone long half life you have to wait a minimum of 24 hours after the last dose of methadone before starting Subutex or you can go into precipitated acute withdrawals due to Subutex being a partial opiate antagonist.

Subutex (Temgesic/Buprenorphine) Is a strange semi-synthetic opiate agonist/partial antagonist.
It fills the opiate receptors and also blocks them (at sufficient doses) so any other opiates can-not get in.

I stabilised on Subutex after about a week, I ended up on a dose a lot higher than I thought I would need (16mg) and soon after started to taper.
It's a lot easier to taper on subs, once I was down to 2mg you can cut the tablet with a razor, I think I got down to a quarter of a 2mg tab...

When it came to stopping altogether, I was so anxious about going into withdrawals, but I didn't!

I was FINE!

I didn't suffer PAWS, the only problem I had was with depression, I'm prone to depression anyway, that's why I started taking heroin in the first place!

I researched anti-depressants that help after long term opiate use and I started taking Venlaflaxine (Effexor)
It definitely helped, it stopped me feeling suicidal at least!

So... here I am again, well, I'm not on methadone this time, after the hellish 18 months it took to get off it last time I will never touch it again hence the MST.

But I wanted to give people on long term methadone maintenance that there is hope, it is possible IF you have the will power and determination to do it!


Mattyorks said...

How do I tell if you and when your online??

I don't use this site but am gonna do but saying that still can't find out where I can tell that you are online!

Sid said...

I don't think you can on here.. do u mean Junky Underground?

Mark said...

I LOVE being high on methadone -for almost 30 yrs now- so why should i stop using it?
I don't get it;if you love opiates ( like i do) why you wanna quit if you get it for free; once a week i pick it up at the apotheek (-Dutch word) and i'm feeling great all the time :)
Sometimes i wonder if i'm the only one who really love opiates in the way that i never wanna quit!

Ron said...

This is quite a testimony. First and for most I want to let you know you are the most well spoken heroine junkie that I have ever heard from. Was this blog during your run or after? All I can remember is it took me a minute to clear up to be able to write as eloquently.
Anyway, whatever happened to the Ibogaine quest, that is the reason that I began to look over this blog. I'm so sorry Mark that you have to rely on a substance to make you feel well. Damn, denial runs super deep. all I have to say is stop lying to yourself. Wow the nightmare you must live.
Ibogaine is what saved my poor victim ass. The whole damn world was against me and if you felt like I did you would use too. What a Lie I had live for may years, I realized that I was just living a lie when the Iboga spoke to me and told me to take responsibility for my miserable life. And that day I did. No one was responsible for my misery but me. I went to a place that helped me to get off the ridiculously horrible last stages of my addiction to Subutex, what a mistake. It was not until I placed a call to a Clinic in Cancun mexico did I truly get my life back .
I was skeptical at first but I was most impressed when I learned about something called the "Ibogaine Standard". Which is a tool that helped me to make the best choice when it comes to an Ibogaine provider. I felt very safe and I am so glad I made the decision that I did. Okay, happy New Year