Cult member turns to alcohol to feel normal after benzo taper fails

Where to live? Dilema
« on: May 07, 2019, 04:52:24 pm »

[Buddie]

Hi everyone,

I need to make a major life decision and whilst I have people who care for me trying to help I feel like the only people who can truly understand the factors involved in a decision like this are others who have gone through or are going through b.withdrawal. Therefore any comments on this would be hugely appreciated.

I’m due to move house next month but the area I want to move to is very expensive. The reason why I want to move there is because I have some friends and contacts there, and feel I’d be able to my life forward. Whilst going through withdrawal I’ve been making some extra income with art and illustration and think this city will facilitate being able to take that to a career-level. (Which is also amazing therapy). I have also been producing some music remotely with a guy who lives near there and if I moved closer we’d take the music to another level too. In a nutshell I feel like it’s the place to be to start getting myself back on my feet and feel some sense of ‘living’ and working again, even whilst still in recovery.

I’ve lived in numerous different cities and across two countries for work throughout my twenties but I turn 31 next week and I’d like to put some roots down – which this city feels right for.

One major thing is the fact that since being in withdrawal I have been relying on alcohol to feel ‘normal’ when going out and about. It’s not been regular, I’d say I’ve been housebound on average 5 days a week and then will have a couple of glasses of wine to meet up with family for example at the weekend – that kinda thing. It’s something I’m deeply ashamed of, although now I understand this was due to withdrawal. But, I know in order to make a full recovery I need to steer clear of it, maybe for a year and allow the brain to heal. That’s my goal. To do that living alone seems like the best option, rather than with a housemate. If I’m around people when I’m feeling particularly bad it’s too tempting sometimes to have some wine to ease the symptoms (otherwise literally the symptoms can get so bad people call for paramedics despite trying to suppress/stop them).

It seems the most realistically way to do this self-styled ‘rehab’ is to be in an environment that I can control. I’ve also had bad luck with housemates during my twenties where they’ve always turned out to be slightly nuts and I don’t think I can handle the stress of that again, especially at the moment.

However, the cost to rent a studio place is above what I can afford whilst relying on disability support (due to withdrawal). I’m two and half years into this and hopeful in a year or so I will recover and therefore be able to work again. So my friends and family are encouraging me to get something above my budget, even offering to help financially a little in the beginning and telling me to be positive that I’ll be able to work again soon. But, as we all know from BW it’s unpredictable and it’s one thing being positive I will be able to work again soon, it feels like another thing betting the roof over my head on it.

So here are the options I’ve come up with but I’m just going round in circles in my head trying to figure this out – hence reaching out on here.

Option one:
I rent something suitable for my health, slightly above my budget, accept some help from my father and work hard to get my art and design business off the ground to sustain the payments. Risk: fail to meet payments – have to move again.

Option two:
Share with someone. Cheaper but not ideal for a ‘rehab’ environment or lifestyle and probably not much space to grow the art business (I work quite large). Risk: using alcohol to keep up appearances / stressful situations with housemate/s – have to move out again.

Option three:
Rent a studio in a different part of the country. In my budget we’re looking at somewhere fairly rural/crappy city. Risk: feeling isolated / lack of opportunities and friends. Mental health could suffer.

My closest confident that I’ve known for ten plus years, who’s seen me go through this from day one, got frustrated with me for not being able to just pull myself together and got a full time job so I can afford a studio in this city. My Dad is encouraging me to ‘think positive’ and ‘take the adventurous risk’, but it’s exacerbating trying to explain that just getting through this is being positive, and that it’s a balance between being positive and being prepared for any worst case scenarios/risks.

I don’t think (understandably) anyone fully understands the mental and physical challenges that come with BW. There are days when I just feel I need to be alone to recharge, not putting on a brave face to housemates, and equally I want to be able to go out and do things that lift my spirits (meet gallery owners / record music) when I feel able to. NB – I find travelling challenging too at the moment (and currently don’t drive) so being within a short walking/cycling distance to a community feels pretty key.

I want to live in my own little safe space where I can recover at my own pace, sustainably without financial stress, in a community that encourages some socialisation and a brighter future. It just seems like I can have two of these things, not all three.

Any suggestions from anyone?
(Thank you)

SHOCKING CULT DEPRAVITY

“My hand picked up raw meat from the counter and tried to put it in my mouth… my brain was telling me to eat non-edible objects”

binge eating
« on: September 18, 2018, 01:49:36 am »

[Buddie]

While I was on benzos, I ate a lot. It was another way to cope with stress. (Along with alcohol and isolation). During my w/d alone I lost 20 pounds. I’m 26 days benzo free now and my really difficult mental sxs are starting to go away. Within the past week however, I have been overeating including binge eating. I did have a difficult social engagement on Saturday that I’m recovering from. Have my mental sxs shifted to behavioral coping like bingeing? I’ve also been hiding and hoarding food and eating alone. I’m grateful I’m not dealing with the really difficult thoughts as much but the overeating behaviors are really not healthy. Anybody else experience overeating post w/d? Is it a part of coping? A sign that I continue to heal? I feel if I restrict, the negative thoughts will come back. It’s hard for me to moderate. Thanks for your shares and thoughts

Re: binge eating
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2018, 01:57:05 am »

[Buddie]

Yeah. I lost over 30 pounds (~14kg) from my acute, and when my stomach recovered and I could eat again I managed to put all of it back on in about three months.

Re: binge eating
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2018, 02:09:42 am »

[Buddie]

Thanks for posting, […]. Did you binge eat? Why am I bingeing? I know I’m doing it and I know it’s unhealthy. I’m obese. I don’t need to put it back on. I want to get my healthy weight back that I had before I started any of these f’ing psych meds.

Re: binge eating
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2018, 12:16:48 pm »

[Buddie]

I have constant obsessional craving to binge every moment I am awake. I have been fighting it since end of last year.

It got so bad when I was off completely my brain was telling me to eat non-edible objects, my hand picked up raw meat from the counter and tried to put it in my mouth.

I crave sugar and carbs which I never did prior to this.

Re: binge eating
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2018, 02:02:34 pm »

[Buddie]

It’s like when illicit drug addicts gain weight – new “sober” sensations make things different. Food tastes amazing to me. It’s normal but needs to be controlled. A tip I have is drinking water with red cider vinegar – helps fill you up.

Re: binge eating
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2018, 03:39:28 pm »

[Buddie]

I haven’t experienced this YET in withdrawal, but I can certainly identify with the binge eating when I was still on kpin. I too lost quite a bit of weight when I jumped. I don’t know the answer now, but just wanted you to know I understand am right there with you! Hang in there.

Quote from: [Buddie] on September 18, 2018, 01:49:36 am
While I was on benzos, I ate a lot. It was another way to cope with stress. (Along with alcohol and isolation). During my w/d alone I lost 20 pounds. I’m 26 days benzo free now and my really difficult mental sxs are starting to go away. Within the past week however, I have been overeating including binge eating. I did have a difficult social engagement on Saturday that I’m recovering from. Have my mental sxs shifted to behavioral coping like bingeing? I’ve also been hiding and hoarding food and eating alone. I’m grateful I’m not dealing with the really difficult thoughts as much but the overeating behaviors are really not healthy. Anybody else experience overeating post w/d? Is it a part of coping? A sign that I continue to heal? I feel if I restrict, the negative thoughts will come back. It’s hard for me to moderate. Thanks for your shares and thoughts.

Re: binge eating
« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2018, 03:40:56 pm »

[Buddie]

Yes! Food tastes SO much better to me now! Love the cider vinegar tip. Thank you.

Quote from: [Buddie] on September 18, 2018, 02:02:34 pm
It’s like when illicit drug addicts gain weight – new “sober” sensations make things different. Food tastes amazing to me. It’s normal but needs to be controlled. A tip I have is drinking water with red cider vinegar – helps fill you up.

Re: binge eating
« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2018, 04:29:11 pm »

[Buddie]

I can’t taste or feel anything in my mouth properly.

Sometimes things taste rotten and disgusting.

Gratitude for psychiatry

Benzo Buddies alcohol experiment

5 months. Alcohol experiment.
« on: April 28, 2018, 01:20:38 pm »

[Buddie]

I am 5 months off of 1mg Klonopin after 6 years of daily, as-prescribed use. It should be noted that I wasn’t well-educated about benzo withdrawal until after I jumped, so my taper was pretty fast in retrospect (0.25mg cuts every 1-2 months).

Aside from anxiety/anger, muscle tension and episodic bouts of lethargy, I’ve been in a pretty good place since the start of month 4.

I know it’s frowned upon, but I’ve been having ONE beer every two months or so to see how I react. In my mind, this is the way to tell if/when I’ve completely healed (when I no longer experience negative effects from a single drink). I’ve never been big on alcohol, so I’m not worried about trading one dependence for another or anything like that.

Anyway… Here’s my latest report.

4/27/18
16oz Coors Light at dinner
(I drank it pretty quick and didn’t nurse it)

Tinnitus (only lasted about an hour) 1/10
Muscle tension 6/10 (worse when asleep)
Sleep sweats 3/10 (not as bad as previous times)
Flatulence 5/10 (still not as bad as previous times)
Neuro weirdness (Eyes darting around/coordination issues/brain zaps 5/10 (not as bad as previous times)
Anxiety 3/10 (mindfulness that this will pass and is par for the course helps- no outright panic)
Overall lethargy 5/10

I’d like to point out that the weird “burning” sensation in my legs has completely gone away after having a drink, so that’s exciting.

I definitely feel “hungover,” but nothing crazy. I do know that sometimes a few of the effects lag and don’t show until a solid 24 hours later, so we’ll see what tonight brings, I suppose.

Does anyone else occasionally try this method? At first I was strictly no alcohol at all, but… I’m angry. I’m done. I want normalcy returned to my life. And dammit, I will get there. :P

***I don’t recommend this method to anyone. This is my own experiment but surely I can’t be the only one.***

Re: 5 months. Alcohol experiment.
« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2018, 01:35:26 pm »

[Buddie]

5 months off and feeling pretty good, you are lucky!!!

Re: 5 months. Alcohol experiment.
« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2018, 02:03:42 pm »

[Buddie]

Quote from: [Buddie] on April 28, 2018, 01:35:26 pm
5 months off and feeling pretty good, you are lucky!!!

Thanks! Yeah, I really am. Especially considering I tried CTing about 3 years back. I only lasted maybe 3-4 days before reinstating at full dose because I turned into a monster. It was bad. I have tremendous support from my husband and friends, which has been so helpful.

I try to keep a positive outlook, because I refuse to be beaten by this.

Swift healing to you!

Re: 5 months. Alcohol experiment.
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2018, 08:37:38 am »

[Buddie]

let us know how it goes, I’ve had a couple of glasses of wine since new years. But I had a glass each time over 4 5 hours haha still too scared to drink how I used to. I’m sure we’ll get there we just need time unfortunately.

Re: 5 months. Alcohol experiment.
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2018, 04:42:38 pm »

[Buddie]

Alcohol is called liquid Benzo in this trip. Chose for yourself. You’ll heal faster without it.

Re: 5 months. Alcohol experiment.
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2018, 06:41:33 pm »

[Buddie]

Quote from: [Buddie] on April 29, 2018, 04:42:38 pm
Alcohol is called liquid Benzo in this trip. Chose for yourself. You’ll heal faster without it.

Some truth to this, although I’ve never heard it called liquid benzo. They both affect the same receptors (GABAa), which may be why the burning went away after a drink.

Even at six years off I rarely drink, but when I do I limit it to 1/2 glass of wine as alcohol has led to borderline panic a few hours later, and I am normally never panicky.

Re: 5 months. Alcohol experiment.
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2018, 06:49:27 pm »

[Buddie]

I’ve never been a big drinker and I didn’t have an alcoholic drink until I was sure I was healed. I didn’t want to do anything to derail the slow progress I had towards recovery. Once healed I’ve been able to enjoy a glass of wine or a margarita on occasion. I don’t feel any negative effects from the drink. I am a one and done kind of person, no refills for me.

[…]

Re: 5 months. Alcohol experiment.
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2018, 10:10:25 pm »

[Buddie]

I’m personally too scared to go near alcohol, I’ve heard too many horror stories of it ramping up people’s symptoms and I feel bad enough as it is. I would be careful with your experiment, tolerating alcohol is not the best litmus test for healing. If you have a bad reaction I would wait a good while to test the waters again.

Re: 5 months. Alcohol experiment.
« Reply #8 on: April 29, 2018, 10:12:53 pm »

[Buddie]

Quote
Once healed I’ve been able to enjoy a glass of wine or a margarita on occasion

Me, too. I have a (small) glass of wine maybe twice a week with dinner. No problems.

Re: 5 months. Alcohol experiment.
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2018, 12:42:39 pm »

[Buddie]

I am scared to even use rubbing alcohol on my skin.

Ashton worshippers replace benzo addiction with food addiction, pile on the pounds

Can't stop eating
« on: March 06, 2018, 12:17:44 pm »

[Buddie]

My brain is telling me to every minute of every day.

It is not like hunger but a sort of panic stricken compulsion that I am unable to ignore. I can’t get any control over it.

I am gaining weight fast.

I don’t know what to do.

I have never experienced anything like it. I lost half my body weight a couple of years ago and don’t want to be fat again.

I think it is tied to my being completely unable to feel any senstion from inside my body including feeling full.

Re: Can't stop eating
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2018, 02:49:32 am »

[Buddie]

I went through a similar phase. I ended up gaining a fair amount of weight which I then had to work back off. And like you, I had lost a bunch of weight (102 pounds) the year before I withdrew.

Maybe go for a nice long walk (without taking any food). Or make sure all the food around the house takes a good hour or more to prepare (no ready-to-eat foods or snacks laying around).

Re: Can't stop eating
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2018, 03:24:15 am »

[Buddie]

I understand what you mean when you say you can’t feel sensations on the inside of your body.

For awhile I was so numb internally I wondered if my heart was still beating. I would have thoughts that would make meme panic mentally but I couldn’t feel any physical response. My body felt dead.

I wonder if your hunger signals are simply misfiring and miscommunicating too. Hunger (or lack thereof) is signalled by various hormones like leptin and ghrellin. I would say that amidst the chaos of benzo withdrawal, the signal to release those appropriately has been temporarily affected.

It could also be that your body is under a lot of stress and is working very hard so is interpreting the need for excess energy.

I would focus on physical exercise where you can. In terms of eating, all you can do right now is try make healthy balanced food choices. Think protein and fibre every meal to try keep your GI low. That should aid satiety and feelings of fullness. And then try and eat as frequently and as much as you know to be healthy for your body. If you logically know you’ve had enough, then perhaps try distraction (although I know how hard this is.

Overall, don’t beat yourself up. You can only do your best. Once you have recovered you can focus on the weight aspect if you still find that to be an issue

:smitten:

Re: Can't stop eating
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2018, 07:49:49 am »

[Buddie]

Don’t let the weight issue get out of hand. It’ll be hard to comeback later, no matter what they tell you. Eat healthy, and above all, exert control.

Re: Can't stop eating
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2018, 12:56:41 pm »

[Buddie]

You know I am going through something similar… the absence of internal sensations, an undiscript urge which feels like an urge to eat. It is confusing and harrowing… especially when you had already worked so hard to get back into shape!…

Do what you can. This is withdrawal… but don’t let go either. Don’t beat yourself up, is what I mean, and try to stay as healthy as you can – but know that this is not the way it will always be.

So I agree with not keeping snacks around, or if there are any, no more than what would feel like a decent portion, something “healthy”… nutrients which will help you function and heal.

Do you cook? Do you share meals with family? Try new recipes, take time to prepare and plate nicely… that could help you think of food differently…?

Brush your teeth after eating… you might feel less tempted to reach for the fridge again…

Plan your meals and snacks, that way you may be able to bargain with yourself…

Exercise and relaxation should also benefit you – especially if like me, you feel a weird “urge”. And any distraction, anything you enjoy…

Not sure whether that is advisable… I chew gum. Yes, full of yucky stuff but it helps with the “urge”… looking forward to being able to give that nasty habit up!!…

And tell yourself that you are healing. That things will get better… because they will. No matter what you believe right now!

Hugs  :smitten:
[…] xx

Re: Can't stop eating
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2018, 04:21:30 pm »

[Buddie]

I am not able to exercise much due to ME/CFS.

I had managed to get my exercise up while tapering but I think I pushed itto much and have made ME/CFS worse as well as withdrawal stuff.

I am mainly housebound.

I can’t explain the eating thing – it does not feel like a normal craving. It feels qualitively different and related to the hypersalivation and neck/jaw tightness that makes my body feel like it is chewing all the time I am awake – like the signals are all messed up.

Also the feel and taste of food is all wrong in my mouth.

The lack of sensation applies to my sense of touch as well – my body feels like it is made of something inert like plastic and the world feels too insubstantial. I manage to forget about it sometimes and then I rub my face or something and the full horror of it returns.

I think I need to talk to the neurologist again.

Before withdrawl I had a very small appetite and ate a paleo style diet. I mainly had one meal a day.