WRONG.WRONG.WRONG. People are different. Ben is the exception to the rule. Ben freely acknowledges he takes the drug purely for it's opiate high - not it's analgesic value. Hydrocodone is the unique intoxicant that satisfies his desire for euphoria and a warm easy high. Ben doesn't want anything more. Ben doesn't drink alcohol or smoke cigarettes or weed or imbibe any other intoxicant of any kind.
Ben is 64 years old and started his odyssey with opiates 15 years ago. Ben is a very intelligent, disciplined, confident, successful, strong willed individual who micro-manages every aspect of his life with fierce intellectual tenacity. Ben will never devolve into a hapless drug addict with no self control over his life and circumstances. Ben blissfully accepts the level of opiate pleasure he derives from his DOC and the same dosage day in day out week in week out year in year out. Ben himself established the strength and frequency of his dosage - not his doctor - and it has remained constant for 5 years. When Ben decided he wanted to go back to Hydrocodone he sought out a physician who would give him credit for his education, life experiences, and personal business success and let him control his own choice of drug and dosage. Ben has been going to the same doctor for 5 years and has never asked for an increase in dosage strength or frequency. Ben has never asked for an early refill or exhibited any of the undisciplined hehavior of a common drug addict. The few times Ben has run out of his normal supply Ben simply does without. The withdrawal from 3 Norco 10s per day is minimal and Ben can easily negotiate it. Ben has gone weeks, months, and years between addictions. Ben is the exception to the rule because he controls the drug not vice-versa. He has never gone to the street or asked for help from anyone else or shopped for another doctor. Ben earned his doctors trust for his integrity and personal discipline over the last 5 years. The doctor agreed with Ben's original assessment of his need and Ben has turned down every offer to increase both strength and frequency of Ben's DOC. Ben knows there is a line that can't be crossed to maintain control and he will never cross it unless he is diagnosed with a catastrophic illness.
Ben appreciates the advice of everyone who cares to offer it - but Ben isn't a young, immature, inexperienced fool. Ben is both worldly and wise. He's acutely aware too much of anything is not good and he's strong enough to maintain a relationship with Norco that does not enslave him. Ben simply wants to feel a little euphoria and a little opiate warmth at night while he's relaxing - and he happily accepts what he gets without complaint.
The reason Ben came here and started this thread was because he feared he might be shortchanging his family of his affection as he medicated for pleasure each evening. But, after a lot of reflection and examination of his life and relationships with those he loves most Ben has determined he is not harming anyone or shortchanging his family. Ben is happy and all the scaremongering in the world won't worry him.
The point of this last post is to say despite what the hardcore old timers here say it is possible to enjoy the pleasures of moderate opiate use without the life threatening dangers of an ever increasing addiction. Most cannot do it long term. But it can be done. Ben is living proof.
styledial added 312 Minutes and 4 Seconds later...
Its 12:45 am and Ben took the last of his three nightly Norco 10s about a half hour ago. He is blissfully high and wearing the warm glow of euphoria. He could easily nod off. He doesn't need or want more - he's completely satisfied with the high he has from the same dose he's been taking for 5 years. Tolerance has not eaten his narcotic pleasure because he's managed his tolerance level effectively.
Ben's preaching a different sermon. Moderation is the key. Manage dosing tolerance with as much conviction as many attempt to manage withdrawal and moderate opiate use is both safe and satisfying.
Bens read most of the journals here and almost to a person everyone leaves the door open in the end of their withdrawal journey for moderate DOC usage - and they continue to use long term after they declare themselves "clean". Example: Kratom, weed, hydrocodone, whatever. So in the end almost everyone ends up moderating and managing their tolerance. Ben's just ahead of the curve.