THE ATIVAN® BLUES

Doctor appointment
« on: January 29, 2021, 10:28:45 pm »

[Buddie]

Hello Everyone. I just had a doctor appointment with my primary care physician. I felt that I needed to keep him informed with everything that has been going bad with me in the last month or so. As soon as I said that I’ve been taking Ativan for the last month, he was like oh boy, you are in for a rough road. And he said don’t expect me to help you out with that either. I said I wasn’t expecting you to help I just wanted to let you know what’s been going on with me. I said you are scarring the crap out of me – are you telling me I’m going to be in for a rough road for sure or is there a chance I might do ok with a taper. He said he couldn’t tell me for sure but to expect a rough road. He said good luck in finding someone to prescribe it. That is the last thing I needed to hear right now. My wife said he’s your PCP, he’s not your psychiatrist who prescribes the medicine. She said I know you are scared but try to block that out right now. Let’s wait to see what the psychiatrists say. Today was a better day until I got that comment from my PCP.

VALIUM FOREVER!

Update - My Dr. told me I would have to stay on Valium forever - I'm not kidding
« on: October 27, 2020, 10:35:35 pm »

[Buddie]

Well, let’s just say my appointment did not go well. Now that I am done crying I wanted to share with you all what happened.

This was the appointment where I asked her if she would help set me up with a compounded liquid Valium taper. I said that I know I’m on a very small dose (2mg) but that when I tried to go to 1.5mg I had severe anxiety & insomnia. So I wanted to taper very gradually with liquid.

She said NO. She said she had talked to her supervising Dr. and that they both agreed, given my history with anxiety and getting off and on benzos, that . . . WAIT FOR IT . . . I need to accept that I will have to take it forever.

I could not believe my ears. I wish I was making this up. This is an actual licensed medical provider in the US.

I tried to respectfully make my case that I did not want to be on benzos forever, that they were not healthy to be on forever, etc. and that I just wanted her help to get off. And that I didn’t want to add on additional meds to help (she has prescribed hydroxyzine & trazodone). The hydroxyzine doesn’t really work and I’m too scared to do Trazodone for fear that I will become dependent on it. She said it’s not possible to become dependent on Trazodone.

I was in tears and by the end of that horrible call I just agreed to do what she said. Not really of course but just to end the call.

I already have another appt with a different Dr. set up for tomorrow. They originally couldn’t see me till 11/11 but called and said they had a cancellation for tomorrow. I pray this new one can help me.

Addict about to lose EMT job after patient reports him

Job in Jeopardy
« on: January 09, 2020, 08:48:32 pm »

[Buddie]

I’m prescribed 8mg Klonopin daily. I’m an emergency dept EMT. I must’ve had a benzo hangover and a patient reported to my boss to say I seemed drunk. I was sent for a urinalysis and admitted I am in fact prescribed Klonopin. It’s been nearly two weeks and haven’t heard back yet. I have to get off this stuff. Thinking about rapid detox.

Accidental addict’s journey from opiates to benzos to a psych ward to finally joining an online cult

Minutes away from facility for dementia, following 5day detox
« on: October 18, 2019, 05:39:42 am »

Iriswoman

Following a 6day detox, arrangements were made to transfer me from an inpatient psych facility to a long term care facility for dementia. Yes, that’s how severe my withdrawal symptoms were. I know you don’t just catch dementia in a week or two. Thank God, I had enough sense, knowledge of my rights, and just enough communication skills to request a 48 hour release. This psych hospital applied an alcohol detox protocol to a 25 year Rx=compliant dependence on benzodiazepines. A dependency that started with ativan and ending the last 15 years with Klonopin. For weeks now I’ve grown so weary that I’m now begun fighting SI daily, more specifically nightly. For 8 weeks I’ve followed a extreme self/care regime with no outside support, not for lack of pleading, but can’t find any resources. Self care consists of healthiest affordable diet (no processed foods, low to no sodium, sugar, caffeine, and saturated fats) plenty of fresh produce with magnesium and potassium […] foods, adequate hydration, sleep hygiene, CBT skills, yoga, deep breathing, 30-40 min walk as able, no medications except tylenol, and aspirin. I see no pattern of benefit or exacerbation with diet, OTC meds or lifestyle. So frustrated.

I was positive that the “protracted withdrawal” business was over-reported and I would recover within a few weeks. Bolstering my thinking was having successful gone through nasty opiate withdrawal years ago without PAWS, I was certain this would not be any worse…but it is bad. This is hell. Far worse. It’s as if Satin himself reaches up from Hell and pinches random parts of my body and brain, producing unpredictable,bizarre, but always painful or bizarre sensations to accompany a symphony of intense pain and prolonged insomnia.

Tonight, I’m scared. Not just the regular unrelenting anxiety, but thoughts that now seem rational, I can’t do this anymore. The pain, the lack of sleep. I’ve not had more than 1.5 hours sleep at any time for nearly 3 months. I am going out of my mind. And yet, I still have more clarity at times than I’ve had for many years. I DO NOT WANT ANOTHER BENZO but I do want sleep, balance, and freedom from unrelenting spasms and nerve pain. I called every place I could think of and there is no help. Ironic, since the U of A and Banner Health just hosted a benzodiazapine awareness workshop in my town. Ironic because it was a Banner/UofA psych MD that referred me to the 5day inpatient detox. I’m livid when I find myself preparing to die, trying to post notes in explanations to things for my children. Certainly not with intention of self harm but what I believe to be inevitable. I don’t believe it is humanly possible to sustain this distress much longer. I’m having a good enough day today that I can actually type this intro. For that I’m grateful. I’m wearing thin on practicing gratitude and positive thoughts. I am human. I’m at my wits ends. Perhaps quite literally. Forgive the current cliche. I’m 66 with 2 adult children, both out of state and so unfamiliar with psych inpatient procedures and benzodiazapines specifically that they blame me for being so compliant with the docs, the Rx and the detox. They know the person I once was, and cannot imagine allowing such abuse. I understand their ignorance. Unless you’ve been through the inpatient process and know that the facility’s threat of an involutary commitment is most likely (and certainly, in my case) an empty one to elicit compliance and justify the maximim number of days to bill.

I will go anywhere for help and follow any sane, helpful advice. When you’ve gone inpatient and were harmed, where do you turn. Especially, when speech and balance is impaired. I can’t drive, I live upstairs and sometime balance is so bad, I cannot leave my apartment. Some days speech is so impaired, I can’t ask for help. I’ve had groceries delivered on days I can manage the logistics of ordering and receiving. Simple things have become monumental tasks. I contacted every support for mental healt. I’ve been to ER twice and was sadmitted the second time to the Neuro unit to rule out a stroke. Very expensive test ruled out a cardiac event. I won’t go again, as I’ve now read that there is nothing they can do. The offending staff at the shrink’s office did send a cop twice to make sure I was still alive. I was deeply offended. See if I’m still alive? That was it? I don’t want to just be alive. I’d like to go on living. Anyone that doesn’t see the difference shouldn’t be in the mental health business. Always so compliant and so forgiving…this time I’m so very angry. I try to convert this anger to energy to keep up this fight. I can’t do this alone and don’t know where or to whom to turn.

I’d rather be inspiring others than begging for help…but like everyone else…I need help. Btw, where are the @#$% lawyers? Who will pay for all those tests, the lost time. Rehab or as the hospital predicted, a long term care facility. Wow, all those mental health agencies competing for your insurance enrollment…disappear when I ask for help now. I rambled to exhaustion. Thx.

Benzo addicts resentful of opiate addicts

My reaction to an opiod withdrawal video
« on: July 17, 2019, 09:52:19 pm »

[Buddie]

Just got finished watching a Ted talk by someone who had a rough time coming off of prescribed opiates.

He was on stage crying in the middle of his speech, and my first thought was “Cool story bro. Let me tell you about benzodiazepines”.

I know the opiod issue has a lot in common with the benzo issue and I’m not saying that opiod withdrawal isn’t awful or that we should look down on anyone who has had that experience, but it kind of bothers me that for years I have been dealing with something that most people claim is worse than opiod withdrawal, yet no one really wants to acknowledge that it is a problem.

Where is our Ted talk? At least everyone acknowledges the opiod issue and they are taking some steps to correct it, benzos are barely part of the prescription drug conversation.

Re: My reaction to an opiod withdrawal video
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2019, 12:39:49 am »

[Buddie]

Where is our Ted talk?

Excellent question, […]! I’ve been wondering the same thing. Maybe since it’s not readily accepted quite yet that these drugs have been part of a “silent epidemic,” there’s fear in coming forward? Something is holding people back from full public acknowledgment and disclosure. I would certainly like that to end NOW.

I’d be a poor public speaker with horrible stage fright. But to have someone take that step of giving a TED talk would be a breath of fresh air!

This butterfly wants to fly (get shit-faced)

This butterfly wants to fly now ....so stressed
« on: May 27, 2019, 07:23:17 pm »

[Buddie]

Recently I have been under A LOT of stress everything has just piled up and I been having chest pains it then gives me more anxiety and adds more stress and worry. The pains feel like a pinch right where my heart is.

Then recently past few days I have been feeling kind of numb no motivation not much energy just want to be on the couch the whole day.

When is it safe to have a drink I’m 8 months off and I have had a drink just on certain occasions.

Can anyone relate? How do you deal with stress?

Xanax addicted pothead can’t watch TV without bursting into tears

Brain Hypersensitivity and Tension/Pressure Headaches and Sensitivity to TV
« on: May 08, 2019, 11:09:21 pm »

[Buddie]

Hi everybody,

Anyone else experiencing Tension/Pressure that hits you like a wave on the top of your head where it feels like someone is pushing you down? It’s really scary, I get dizzy and can’t walk. I also am really sensitive to noises (had to turn off the clocks in my house). And I am unusually sensitive/emotional to watching TV and news, I just feel very anxious and I cry when I normally NEVER cry, so I stopped watching it.

But, I am a HUGE Game of Thrones fan and it’s been really difficult/scary for me to watch the show because I get so much anxiety and I am scared I will have a stroke in my brain because it feels so weird! I feel like I know what part of my brain is being triggered with each different emotion. Anxiety/Stress gives me crazy Tension/Pressure Headaches, the other emotions feel like my brain is being stimulated with vibrations. Or I have goosebumps/chills in my brain (best way I can describe it), it’s just really weird and scary!

I’m scared to see my friends because I don’t know what emotion will be triggered with what they talk about or ask me, and how my brain is going to react to it! Has anyone else experienced this? If so, how long does it last? And do you have any coping tips or know of an OTC or herbal remedy? HELP!

I’m scared that this is permanent. I have been abusing Xanax for 13 years and started smoking marijuana, heavily for the past 2 years. I have a very high tolerance. The past 4 months I was pretty much smoking marijuana ALL DAY and night since I had really bad insomnia and was taking anywhere from 2 1/2-4 mgs of Xanax. About a month and a half ago I quit marijuana and smoking cigarettes, cold turkey. And decided to start tapering off Xanax by.25mg each week, but I started at 2mgs. And I think I reduced it too quickly and also the withdrawal from marijuana, I feel has magnified my withdrawal symptoms.

I feel like I’m going crazy and turning into a major hermit out of fear. Can anyone help, please? 🙏

Addict thanks Ashton and Benzo Buddies for wasting three years of her life

The Beginning of My Third Year Tapering
« on: April 05, 2019, 12:24:23 am »

[Buddie]

April 2017, I started tapering 2 mgs of Xanax, my stomach was killing me, had all the tests, all came back showing nothing, lucky enough my husband found an article discussing benzos and stomach pain and it all fell together.  I immediately cut way too much, having no knowledge of what I was doing, but I was lucky in that the next day I started researching.  I didn’t find the Ashton Manual or BB then , just enough information to go back up immediately, the word stroke scaring me to death.  Started back down, still way too fast, withdrawals really bad.  Anxiety off the roof, shaky, heart palpitations, muscle pain, and many others.  Mostly in terrible shape.  In October, after lowering about .05 xanax found Ashton Manual, got my pain Dr to help and managed to come down another.25 for a total of.75 Xanax.  Horrible withdrawals, found BB, thank goodness, and decided to crossover to Valium, which also turned into a nightmare, my body just hated it, sedated, sick, had crossover too fast, having xanax withdrawals also.  It was awful.   I made many more mistakes during the next year, this is so hard, not the same rules for anyone.  My main symptom through all of this has been bad muscle pain, still is.  I am writing this for the people who are around a year into this and think they can’t go on, you can.   I am down to 10.56 Valium from 40 mg .  I am now doing a daily liquid micro taper, much easier than cut and hold for me, and just had a three week window, I had never had one.  So if I can make all the mistakes I did and be as miserable as I have been, know you can keep on.  Keep reading all over BB to find the way for you, ask questions, learn, get advice……my best advice, taper slowly, so many of us have run into so many walls wanting to speed this process up, all the heartache, pain and time we would have saved , if we had just slowed down.  Ashton is a fast taper for most of us, it’s a good taper but cut that % down or stretch the time frame out.  You will be glad you did.  I was on Xanax for 3 years, never dreamed this could happen, am sure you didn’t either.  I hope this helps someone, I am not a great writer like so many on here, but I wanted to share, you are not alone in your mistakes, not anything wrong you have done has not been done before and those people still healed.  Good luck everyone, you CAN do this too, it won’t be easy and it is going to take a while.   🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀 […]….read the success stories, they help!