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Dilemma - Can it be done?

I've been off hydrocodone since May 31.  I have a weekend job on a mountain river that is very physically demanding, but which I love, really love,  to do. Since I stopped taking the painkiller, I usually finish the day wracked with pain and discomfort. I've had mornings where I couldn't straighten up because of the pain & stiffness. That's what I first started taking the hydro for some time back, and they provided wonderful short-term relief. Later I started using the drug inappropriately.  (Nothing else has helped the pain much, including prescription NSAIDs, epidurals, cortisone shots, acupuncture, PT, even a barbaric treatment called dry needling. have a surgical consult Monday for lower back. Now I dread the end of a day on the river, because the rest of the night and the next morning are usually awful. I've begun to dread it and even have considered giving up the work, but that would make me very unhappy.

I've begun considering giving a supply of the drug to my girlfriend who I trust implicitly and who already knows what's going on in all facets of my life. She stood by me through the physical withdrawals and knows that the mental part is a long haul. The idea would be for her to dole out a small amount to take with me for the couple days a week that I work in the mountains -- lets say a total of 3 7.5 mg pills for two days, then nothing during the week.

Is this potentially feasible? Has anybody out there tried anything like this?  If the supply of drugs is not in my control, could it work?  

Thanks folks


12 Responses
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736475 tn?1281259327
i think it really depends on you. yes that could be a feasible way to be prepared yet safe. pain *****. how strong is the monkey that was on your back. for alot of us, just a foot in the door is all it would take for disaster. if you make that plan, and can stick to it, i think that's wonderful. you're not going to squirrel them away until you have a handful to get high on, right? anyway, i hope the choice you make lets you do the work you love so much without any mayhem. peace, sway
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Longer,
I had the 4 rotator cuff surgeries and know I have to have another at the end of summer.
I played 27 holes of golf and worked out yesterday and it hurts like **** today.
My own stupid fault but I live everyday to it's fullest especially knowing the downtime that is coming.
I am strong willed and am on day 13 from Oxy and I can relate but it just scares me to death to think that the med could be potentially stronger than my will, like sway1 mentioned just a foot in the door could be disaster.

My day 1 and 2 WD keep me away, somewhere I rationalize I could behave but those opiates are strong persuaders.

I iced my shoulder last night took two Aleve today and it has settled down but not totally.
It is a price I'm willing to pay, it sounds like you don't have a choice.

BTW I did speak to my ortho and this was key as well.
He reinforced my decision to quit CT because he said when the time does come that I will REALLY need them (surgery in the fall) they may not be effective, nothing may be effective as my brain has adjusted to having them so consider that as well.
Now that would s*** lol.

Hope this helps.
Helpful - 0
611067 tn?1458591483
I do think it is feasible.  But, like Sway said above, it really depends on you and if you feel that you can do this safely or not.

I have had to take hydrocodone 3 times since last September when I quit due to addiction.  So far, it has not caused me any grief or lapses and I have not craved them at all since taking them.  But, I honestly have to say that I don't know if I could have done it two months after stopping - I was still too vulnerable!  My first hydrocondone (Lortab) was in May and I only took half and it knocked me on my butt!  I didn't remember them being strong - I suppose since I had become so used to them while abusing.  

Whatever you choose to do be strong and remember that your mind is still trying to deal with the emotional addiction.  But, I understand chronic pain and sometimes we need something.  The key is to be normal and use those meds for true pain and not as a crutch or recreation!

Good luck and let us know how you do!  

Hugs,
Janet
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Maybe you could give me some insight. My husband was prescribed vic 7.5 for several years and he had worked up to about 6 a day. I told him I was worried about addiction and abuse and he quit in March. He didnt go back for his appt since then. Since then I have found a total of 3 pills in his pockets. I am terrified that he is still taking and abusing them but just hiding it very well. He has the opportunity to make enough money on the side to fund a trip to a dr and pay cash and I guess he could be making enough on the side to fund them being gotten other places. I have not found any money missing from our account and I have never seen any evidence that he is going to another dr. Both times I have found pills he has an excuse. I know that he very well could be lying to me. I have just heard so many people say that if he has abused them in the past (not a large dose but anyway) that he will never be able to take them 'once in a while' even for legit pain without it leading to regular abuse. Now I see you saying that you are doing what he says he is doing. He says that since March he has taken maybe 10 total.
I have also seen signs of withdrawal since then, such as now he is having aching in his hip joints, diarrhea, yawning and many nights he has had the RLS. He always explains them away.

I just cant get rid of the lump in my chest that seems to be my radar to tell me something isnt right. I want to believe him and in honesty there is nothing that he has told me that screams lie or cover-up. But even before I found pills I didnt believe. He didnt have bad withdrawals when he was supposed to have quit- according to him it was because he didnt take a lot.

I guess I just am latching on to the fact that you say you are able to do it the way he says that he is.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
I detoxed off these pills three weeks ago and I was taking 7.5 dosage as well. I just want to tell you that 6 pills a day, is a lot (you mentioned that it wasn't). The amount of Tylenol in those pills with that doage can cause serious liver damage and other internal complications. This is a major reason why I decided to get off of these. I obtained this information from professionals and other addicts that have a lot of clean time. i also researched this and another side effect of long-term opiate use is the large intestine paralizes. This is why constipation occurs. These pills are awful for the mind and body. As an addict, I am going to tell you that I lied to people all the time to keep my pill popping going. If you are finding pills in his pocket, I think he probabaly has taken more than 10 pills since March and does have an active pill addiction; however I don't know him personally. But I do know myself as an addict, and most addicts are similar in that We will do what we have to do to keep using; lying, cheating, stealing and hurting others. Complete Honesty is something that I live by and practice now, when I was using it was not practiced. My parents were both addicts and my advice is to maybe attend Ala-non. These meetings are family members, spouses and friends that are living with and caring for addicts/alcoholics. They can give you support and advice about how to handle these situations. My other thought is to really encourage him to tell you the truth about what is going on, and don't be really enraged or aggressive when you ask him to tell you about the pills. He may lie, because he is scared of your reaction to the truth. I was scared to tell my boyfriend two months ago; but I needed his support to begin the detox. He needs you to do this! I think his problem is serious and he needs help, just as I did, these pills are deadly and control every move and thought the addict has; until it stops. These are just my thoughts and opinions. I have lived life living with addicts and as an addict; so I know both sides. I hope everything gets better.
Helpful - 0
611067 tn?1458591483
Hey Hon:  I'm sorry that you are going through the worry for your husband.  I have taken a total of 3 pills since May.  Prior to that I did NOT take any Hydrocodone since I quit in September last year.  I just wanted to clarify that for you because I WAS NOT ABLE TO DO THAT prior to May.  I was not emotionally ready to let go of the mental part of my addiction and I still have to stay viligant. If he became clean in March after years of use than most likely he is not ready to use them for pain control.  That's just my opinion.

If you are seeing signs of withdrawal and pills in his pockets it is likely that he is still abusing the pills.  If your gut and the signs say he's still using than he probably is.  

The advice to find advice from NA or Ala-Non, etc. are great ideas.  I also agree that you should apprach him and let him know how much you love him and want to help him.  Let him know that you need to know the truth and that you will support him and help him.  I would also recommend that if he needs the pills for pain, maybe suggest in a non-threatening way that you would like to hold them for him and when he needs them you can give them to him.  That way the temptation is not there to abuse.  

Whatever you decide, I'll keep you and your husband in my prayers.
Helpful - 0
611067 tn?1458591483
I think you were addressing the amount of pills being a lot to notgoingdown?  I never said 6 pills a day wasn't a lot.  I just wanted to clarify that.

Hugs,
Janet
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
I am so sorry that you are going through so much with your husband right now, and I hate to say it, but especially as women, our "Gut" is usually right.  This is not supposed to offend the men on this board, but there is a lot to be said for a womans intuition.  You have a lot of thinking to do about how to handle this delicate situation. Good luck and God Bless
Helpful - 0
222369 tn?1274474635
If we can control our using, even with help, then we're not addicts. I wish I had a dollar for every time I made a plan to "use" in a controlled manor. It always led back to the same place. I had to give up golf because it caused too much pain. It killed me, but living a good sober and clean life is more important. The ultimate choice is yours.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Thanks to all who offered advice and hope for me and my husband.

I know what my gut is trying to tell me and my head hears it loud & clear. My heart is the one having the problem listening.
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Avatar universal
Umm.......okay?  First of all.......you found pills in his pockets?  and you have seen withdrawal symptoms that you know ......you know.....or do you??.....Did you ever ask where he got those pills in his pocket since he was not suppose to be taking them?  he may be taking a "small dose" but, small doses will usually lead to more and more.  

We can try to rationalize anything out of our minds because of fear and denial.  Please keep your eyes open, and behind your head at all times.

I wish you all the best.....
luv,
Nauty...........
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
About the withdrawal symptoms-- I did NOT see them back in March when he was supposed to have quit but he told me he had them. I dont think he knew I could rattle off the wd symptoms like a list. Shocked him a few months later when I did list them off to him. Since then I have seen here & there times of antsy behavior + back, leg, whatever is hurting that day + RLS at night, etc... never lasts long which leads me to think he gets more somewhere.
Do I KNOW for sure... no... which is why I question myself all the time. For instance, night before last he had achy back, stretching legs out... next day he had diarrhea pretty bad, funny stomach, runny nose and everytime I talked to him on phone he was yawning his head off. All of them wd symptoms but ALL of them with a logical explanation... lifted a hw tank wrong, was on a ladder a lot during the day, ate something that might have been 'off', in a moldy house set off allergies, didnt sleep good. I know, really KNOW, that all of that could be bs but it isnt obvious bs like my dog ate my homework obvious so then I start questioning myself and that dang lump in my stomach!
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