Cocaine addiction - trying to end internal war

Discussion in 'Cocaine addiction' started by ProteinBlast, Oct 2, 2006.

  1. ProteinBlast

    ProteinBlast Newbie

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    Hi, I am the name and I have a problem. SWIM recalls the first time he encountered it, his best friend at the time introduced him. Thats what best friends are for, right? This was 4 years ago. Since that first weekend I have dabbled off and on with a crazy C habit. When it first began I couldnt get enough. It wasn't like 'shrooms or anything crazy where you can't focus your mind - it was just the opposite. And I felt great.

    SWIM realized it was taking control when he started planning his weekends around it's availablilty. When he found himself hanging out more with addicts, and less with his non-using "true" friends. SWIM regrets that'd he'd even passed up doing things with his girlfriend at the time (now his wife) for doing the other thing. There have been large gaps of a few months with doing nothing. There were times were it was every weekend for a few months. The cycle continues.

    I have decided to quit and needs your help. I need support to break the cycle. He doesn't have that need to do it every day. It's not like that. He has a good job, a loving family and a great wife. Every reason to stop living a lie and get his shit together. He can't afford to sneak around and lie and say he has a cold/runny nose. He can't stand the depression following a session - although it can be quit enlightening. The comedowns have hit a point for SWIM that he thinks he is going to die this time. And he says a pray, promising beyond promises that this is it. He's going straight and never looking back. He wants it, somewhere deep down.
    But then the weeks go by and he recovers and again something sets it off...a trigger. A commercial, a song, an email. An upcoming party. Something. And it digs it hooks into my mind and he battles it. Every reason for not doing it versus how just one more time would be okay. He's young - you only live once. Bullshit. It's been winning. The bullshit has been beating SWIM and he's tired of it. He's tired of deleting numbers from his phone only to try and find them in his call log weeks later. He's tired of making empty promises to him. He needs a change.

    One day at a time. When you wake up you say "Today, sWIM will not do drugs today." and repeat. I have to do this. For me, for my wife, for my future. I am a happy person and this habit is slowly destroying him. Mentally and physically.

    my left arm sometimes goes tingly. It might be from usage, (and always using with many cigarrets and lots of beer) or it might be from typing all day on a computer. It scares SWIM. I had another session this past weekend, not a lot. But enough to bring on the depression and everything else associated with comedowns. I don't want this post to be "well I was just depressed and venting". SWIM truly want this to be the real start of a change. I know there is someone on this forum that can relate and help me. I have kept this battle to myself for so long and lived the lie so long (wife has no idea) that it's eating me apart. I am tired of the lie. End of story. Thanks for whoever has read through and can understand.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 15, 2014
  2. ramjet

    ramjet Silver Member

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    SWIM might be in a similar position, but he's not sure if he'd call himself an addict. Like you, I use approx twice a month, sometimes more sometimes less, along with a variety of other dugs (E, weed, shrooms, kratom). I get a more intense high from other substances like E and shrooms, but doesn't find anything to be quite as satisfying as coke and finds coke to be the best social lubricant. I find cravings to be intense after he's snorted his first line, and think about it a lot when he's not on it. His financial position has definitely suffered as a result. SWIM enjoys spending time with long term gf and doing non drug related things, but also enjoys going out with friends and taking drugs. It's as if I have two different lives. SWIM's gf doesn't know about the drugs, but she doesn't mind him going out with his friends, so long as he spends quality time with her as well. He hates lying to her about the drugs and knows she'd finish with him if she knew, but he loves doing drugs and doesn't want to stop doing them. I understand about the crashes afterwards; he always feels really depressed and guilty and promises to himself that he'll never do it again, but changes his mind the next day. He's always put this down to the fact that he's not thinking clearly on comedown. Maybe it's the only time he is thinking clearly. It's not totally dominating SWIM's life or turning him into a crazed user who needs his fix every day, or anything like that, but he is running the risk of losing someone he loves dearly and possibly spends more money and time on the stuff than he should. I am confused. Is he addicted?
     
  3. ProteinBlast

    ProteinBlast Newbie

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    SWIM appreciates yous feedback. It's been exactly a week and both the body and mind have almost 100% recovered. The thought of doing it again doesn't causes the pain as it would of only days before. But that's not going to happen - that's how it starts. The depressed comedown makes You promise that this is it - then a few days later when the mind is back, it doesnt seem so bad. That's the cycle.
    Some day addiction is "needing it all the time. Can't live without it". Sure that's one way to nail it down, but I think it about something else...can You stop when you said you would. Does he plan events around getting/doing it. Has he caught himself living a lie to his significant other?
    Bottom line - can he stop? The problem SWIM's always had was that, YES, he could stop; at least for a lil while. Weeks or even a few months could go by...but then something crept into his mind and drew him back in...making him seek it out. Once that the thought "I am going to get it!" gets stuck in his mind, it seems nothing can get it out. Every rationalization comes into his head "you held off for so long, theres no addiction". But its bad, I said never again "its been months though, remember how good it feels? The down only last a little while, then you are good as new". Etc. Etc.
    SWIM wishes You luck. SWIM's best advice would be to make a choice betweem the gf he loves and the lie he's living on the side. Keep I posted ;)
     
  4. ramjet

    ramjet Silver Member

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    The nature of addiction is a very interesting topic.

    If there wasn't any lying involved, would you still consider that you had a problem or just an enjoyable recreational hobby? If you're doing it that infrequently, can you really be said to be reliant upon it, or are you simply letting social perceptions of the drug make you feel guilty?

    SWIM's "double life" was going fine until he got cautioned for possession ... now it could ruin his job. He's a trainee solicitor and won't find out until the time comes for him to be admitted to the roll in a year and a half's time. It seems there's a good chance I will JUST get away with it from the (extensive) research he's done, but there's still a risk, and this whole eipsode has certainly put thing's into perspective for SWIM.

    I guess the part of SWIM the lives on short term pleasure, desire and lust wants to continue leading a double life because he wants both gf and drugs and he doesn't do drugs THAT often, so he doesn't feel they're dominating his life. If I had to make a choice, his gf means a lot more too him and long term happiness is more important than a fleeting short term buzz, but he doesn't know whether he wants to, or could quit. SWIM can go for long periods without it, and can enjoy himself without it, but doesn't forsee quitting for good. He's not sure whether it's just that he enjoys it and doesn't want to quit or whether he can't quit. Hmmmm. You've got SWIM thinking. He never thought he was addicted, but maybe he is? What do others think? Can monthly - fortnightly use be considered addiction?

    I have always thought that he is young now and when he is older and settles down with a family and his friends do the same, his drug use will naturally become less and less frequent and then eventually stop altogether.

    Addiction is certainly a strange thing. I think there are definitely different levels of addiction. A huge portion of the population are addicted to caffeine, TV, food, alcohol etc. but manage to lead otherwise productive lives.

    Think of it in another way: how many people don't drink every day, but drink most times when they go out and drink on most weekends? Are they addicts?That would constitute the majority of Britain's population. An interesting thought.

    I wish you all the best with your struggle. Same applies, keep me informed!
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2006
  5. ProteinBlast

    ProteinBlast Newbie

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    I think that You has a good point with the lying and guilt aspect. The "down days" are full of thoughts about those I have betrayed by doing the drug. Guilt because he swore, as You would, that once he gets married, has a family, etc...some milestone...it will stop. Marriage was it for SWIM. But, sadly, that too was betrayed. Personal guilt weighes heavily.
    Leading the secret agent lifestyle isn't easy. But there is no way I could possibly reveil those secrets - some are certainly best left unknown. This, I think, makes stopping the hardest part. Struggling within, and no one knows it's even happening. Except on here - which is a place I am eternally grateful for...people who can relate.

    SWIM totally understands the alcohol, tv, food comment. I think it might be because of their social "acceptance", and C being a relatively "hard" drug. In one's own mind You might say, "What the hell am I doing here, hard drugs?"...yet I will drink beer after beer after beer until complete intoxication almost each and every weekend. Hmmm indeed.

    I am one year older than You and has often said the "young now" bit. And perhaps it is true...as we age it get's less "cool" among friends. Greater responsibilities in life: family, kids, job. Less connections...It fades? Or is that another magical rationalization...those damn rationalizations get you ever time...
     
  6. ramjet

    ramjet Silver Member

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    Might be a fair rationalisation. I think the key is to keep it to special occasions only. That way you know it won't be gone for ever, (if you enoy it the "I'll never do it again" attitude might be a little unrealistic, whereas "special occasions" only is possible and attainable). I don't know, maybe that's just SWIM rationalising, lol!

    It's great to have someone who understands SWIM, especially about the lying/hiding from significant other thing. I think because we aren't "obvious" junkies our position is a unique one, but also a dangerous one.

    SWIM rationalises the hiding/lying thing in a number of ways:

    1. In contrast to virtually all my friends, I have never cheated on and would never cheat on his gf (they've been together 7 1/2 years). That gives him at least some moral leverage ...

    2. I have an otherwise brilliant relationship with his gf. They hardly ever argue, both love the time they spend with each other and he does a lot for her emotionally and physically (it's mutual).

    3. It doesn't interfere with their relationship. He doesn't blow her out so he can go and do drugs. She has a lot of mates and part of the reason their relationship is strong is that they do give each other space (not too much, just enough). He spends around 4 nights a month alone with his friends and she does the same. This is usually, but not exclusively, when he ends up doing drugs.

    Having said all that, I am still leading a double life and it fills him full of guilt and remorse. SWIM just loves short term pleasure too much and doesn't have enough will power!

    It's been good to chat. Hopefully we'll continue this discussion later. I should spend some time with the misses now ;-)

    ramjet
     
  7. Nicaine

    Nicaine Titanium Member

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    Addiction is a 'loaded' term, with different definitions (depending on who you ask). I feel anyone who thinks "I want to quit" could probably call themselves addicted (i.e. those who aren't just stop, without being concerned if they 'can' or not). Or, substitute the term "dependence" for a less loaded terminology. Words that are heavy on emotional baggage often don't convey anything substantial.

    Anyway... I have used the famous 'geographical cure' in the past to get away from cola long enough that it's much easier to stay away when he got back. One month is ideal, but even a week or two can help. Telling all known sources about it helps too, as coke dealers tend to be on the paranoid side and may not sell to someone who seems oriented toward quitting.

    Switching dependencies to something more minor also works, although not really recommended. In 2005 I started using kratom heavily, and this made it a lot easier to kick cola... he continued using it for close to a year before kicking that too last spring. A better/more positive alternative would be to go on antidepressants. I have found Wellbutrin (bupropion) to be helpful.

    P.S. SWIM wonders if there's such a thing as 'permanently' quitting coke. It's always seemed to periodically drop back into his life. Maybe somebody else could answer this.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2006
  8. Ellis D.

    Ellis D. Newbie

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  9. ProteinBlast

    ProteinBlast Newbie

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    Thanks for reading Ellis - and thank You for the tips. Sadly my maryjane days are pretty much over so it looks like SWIM'll be sticking with the cold turkey approach. It's been almost 2 weeks clean now so we shall see. I find that going to the gym a lot and working out removes much of the desire that creeps in...the toughest part is maintaining though...once I feel like the addiction has been beaten (because it's been x # of weeks, months) they think there is no harm in one more dabble. That's where I have always failed. The 3 weeks to 1-2 month period. SWIM always thinks because he made it that far he's golden. That is the cycle's time period, roughly. I will update again in 2 more weeks. Thanks again for reading, SWIM appreciates it :)
     
  10. fletch

    fletch Gold Member

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    its tough to battle the hypocritical bitch thats an addiction but it can be done, its best not to beat oneself up about it and basically accept the fact that its an ongoing battle that doesnt go away over night, what has to happen is You must find an alternative to using the drug, by that swim means when the urge is ther, ther must be something else You can preoccupy time w/, dont sit and think about catchin the high, get up and do something else to take the mind off it, because cravings only last so long, and they dont last long if the mind is focused on something else, take up a new hobby or something, a big factor would definatly be to not hide the problem, if those who love You understand that You has a problem they will be there to support, it makes everything alot easier knowing that others understand and alot of the time they can assist You when those cravings come about. definatly keep strong. best of luck.
     
  11. Forthesevenlakes

    Forthesevenlakes Platinum Member

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    Fletch has an excellent point. dont beat swiyself up over a slip up. Look at it as a temporary setback, not as a permanent failure. Even if You uses after trying to quit, keep in mind that many people take a few quit attempts before finally making it stick. Learn from swiy's mistakes and take note of the cues that led You to use again, so that he can avoid those situations and cues in the future, or be wary of them if they are around. Taking a vacation can help alot since it rids You of the situational cues to use while he initially gets physically clean, thus leaving You in a better situation to deal with the psychological struggle later on.
     
  12. monkeygone2heaven

    monkeygone2heaven Titanium Member

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    swim's here, reading, interested, supportive... thinks when one thinks a substance is a problem then it is.. regardless whether it's C or E or H or kitkats.. swim sometimes feels she has just this much an issue with alcohol which is legal and "cheap" (!)... You has received some great feedback already, swim's not going to be able to add mch tonight. just showing support and feels you articulated well your rationale and reasons for wanting to quit...
     
  13. johnny_socko

    johnny_socko Newbie

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    -

    I Concur,the more focused on scoring or doing the more likely you will fulfill that thought. I had done enough to get hooked b4. (smoking freebase, even worse trust me) There must be a successor to this craving, a thought or distraction. We are animal like this, if we can distract ourselves long enough away from the current thought, it will go into hibernation. The distraction will win by default. Be Strong Brother...

    Cliche Warning,

    Whether you think you CAN do something, or think you CAN'T, you're probably right. - Henry Ford

    JS
    -
     
  14. suninmy_MOUTH

    suninmy_MOUTH Newbie

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    I think there is another level of clarity the mind can reach. When quitting a multi-year H habit, I felt a real sense of clarity only after about half a year. With the little coke habit that is at bay at the moment, a month of craziness on it, took about 10 days to feel clear. Yes there is that point where one feels pretty good, like the body is recovered, and the seems like it would be a good time to use again. But that (mind you, this is just my totally idiosyncratic, non-scientific opinion about the recovery process), is not really when the body and mind are clear. Over the course of a day or two, which could be a couple weeks or months later it seems, You will feel like a viel was lifted. For SWIM, when I was truly sincere about wanting to stop (one has to want to stop, one may have lots of good reasons not to use, like family, job, shitty lifestyle, guilt, etc., but there needs to be an epiphony of sorts from within that You really wants to stop, where life on drugs just can't go on, I feel this is absolutely neccesary for the initial step... on a further aside, many rehab centers in the US will not take a patient that does not choose to go to.. unless of course it's mandatory court order).

    I feel that once You has made the honest decision to try and stop, and uses whatever means neccesary to get to that point of clariity of mind and body above, then You has the power to beat the addicition. For some, it may take checking into a rehab center to get away from the drug long enough, some need counseling--or both, some are so stubborn (like SWIM), that they just need to do it on their own... some need the help of a family or loved ones or friends. It's hard to tell these people about the problem, but I think if for some reason these persons turn You away, they have their own problems, are heartless or just didn't care that much about You in the first place. I have seen bad reactions from parent's whose kids admitted the problem, and kicked them out, since they just were so ashamed of their progeny's behaviour. my own so-called friends at times, seemed to dissapeer when times were tough. But there is always someone out there, be it a professional or just a casual friend, that will help in the right ways.

    I know at bottom different people are using for different reasons. my friend has been off and on H or C for the past then years, but he isn't doing the drugs for his own sake, he does it to make himself feel sociable, he is also-- and always was, depressed, never felt like he fit in being an immigrant in a 99.5% white suburban area. Kids always find another's senstive spot, and press it, for my friend, it was the racial jokes that hurt him so bad. SWIM also got made fun of a lot, but it was for silly things, like being a klutz, and perhaps I took it too hard at times as well, but never felt like drugs made him any less awkward in social settings. Drugs in fact, made him more hermit like. With coke, recently, staying inside, doing it all night long -- till the next afternoon, that made him someone he didn't like to be. SWIM just enjoyed the drug, cocaine or otherwise, for their percived glamour (i.e., in hollywood, muscians, etc).. SWIM wanted to get out of his head and really feel good. But I had alife, things that he wanted to do, things to look forward to, a good family he didn't want to cause any more trouble to.

    SWIM knew all these things, but in like he said above, those reasons sometimes are not enough to stop an addict from using. Well, probably in most cases. But once SWIM decided he couldn't lead two lives, as good as heroin or cocaine made him feel, it couldn't be better than all the other things that were good in his life put together. I had to choose, back then with heroin, and recently with cocaine, that he could either use or have the rest of his life. Can't do both. SWIM hears often about functioning addicts, those who can use cocaine or heroin, but still manage to do their jobs, be with their families and friends, for decades. Burroughs seemed to live the life he wanted and used heroin to a ripe old age. Until it seemed he just got tired of it. I have heard about businessman copping crack or heroin before work everday, lawyers and doctors who use cocaine for years and years and are still on the level. If You is truly like that, my tips his hat to you.

    my personal experience with himself and those around him, this has never been the case. Of course, some people function pretty well being addicts, like SWMs aforementioned friend. Some brilliant people (like Freud), and workaholics feel that cocaine enables them to get things done when they normally couldn't will themselves to do it. However, the period of functioning never seems to last for my acquaintences. Things start to go wrong--- stress, money, poor health, angry and regretable beahvior towards loved ones... inevitably show up, the addict gets out of control. An overdose, an arrest, or something bad like that tends to be unavoidable in using illicit drugs. Addict cant function properly after all and needs to make that decision.

    This is just my opinion on how to stop, geting into clarity is very key, You can be rational about his actions and think about their consequences. Then its just a daily battle that gets a little easier each year.

    Apologies for the extremely long-winded post, I couldn't quite articulate his opinions on a detailed recovery process in a brief manner since he was just now putting it into words for the first time.

    Good luck all those who want to get better, if SWIM can do it, anyone can!!:D
     
  15. ProteinBlast

    ProteinBlast Newbie

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    Many thanks for every response - it has been a little over 3 weeks and I find that while it is getting easier to manage cravings, there is still this thought that keeps popping into his head. The thought has him looking into his calendar for a free weekend to use. A time when he can get away with it.

    I know it's pathetic, especially since he's been feeling so great lately. Going to the gym 2-3x a week, running, liftinging, being in good general health. I feel good: why then does he get the damnable urge? When he KNOWS nothing good came can possibly come of just "one more time"; he knows the ups and the downs, he reads almost every post on this forum, daily, including his original in this very thread (to remind himself I guess). It's like an obsession, reading experience threads, almost like a placebo high - maybe that's not a good thing to be doing while fighting?

    It's like the brain can't cope with the idea of "never using again", so you have to fool it by literally facing it each and every day and saying: today, I will not use. So far, it's has been working, SWIM guesses he's just getting frustrated. That part of his brain that says "hey - look how good you feel now, it didn't take long to recover. 2-3 days? Then you're back, good as new! What's one more time? Remember how good it feels?" The fight continues.

    Again, thanks for the support. It's much appreciated. :)
     
  16. Forthesevenlakes

    Forthesevenlakes Platinum Member

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    This experience is more common than one might think, Protein! But it's not necessarily a bad thing to do. While reading some of the experience threads can trigger a craving or a placebo high, (I have experienced this too), it may be able to serve as a surrogate or replacement for actually getting high. This is perfectly fine as long as You doesnt run out and buy a gram of coke afterwards. Sometimes it helps to just have the drug experience vicariously through another. Perhaps delete you's dealer's number or something before settling in to read the forum? Also reading the recovery threads on similar topics to what You is going through can help alot. It makes You realize that while stopping an addiction is hard, and frustrating, that it CAN be done. Theres a great degree of comfort knowing that other people have gone through the same thing that You has.

    This cognitive process is a good strategy, Protein. Oftentimes when SWIM and other lab rats he knows have tried to quit different substances, they would think to themselves, "I am NEVER using ever again!" But then they could have a lapse in judgment and end up beating themselves up over using again, just one more time. When they got into the mindset of, "I am taking a hiatus from substance x," it turned the recovery issue into more of a day-to-day effort, which is how You has to face the problem. Recovery doesnt all happen at once. Lapses can happen, but You should view it as a temporary setback, not a permanent failure. SWIM and others have managed to stay clear of certain drugs for quite a while using the mindset of, "I haven't quit forever, they just haven't had the time to get around to substance x." Somehow for them this increases the feeling of control over the situation. Instead of believing the drug has a hold on them, they feel as if they have control over the drug, which is quite empowering. The trick is to not use this mentality as an excuse to use "just one more time." One mindset or strategy might work best for you, I am just offering an alternative opinion here that could help.