My Drug Addiction was Fueled By Taking Opiates For Migraines.
I was addicted from the first codeine tablet I took. suboxone dr near me
My migraine, which had been brought on by extreme dehydration and four bottles of wine the night before, had practically evaporated into thin air. I was transported to a fluffy cloud that reminded me of memory foam. When I discovered codeine, I felt like I'd struck gold.
That wasn't the first time I'd felt like that. It was if someone had flicked on a light in a dark room when I first discovered booze. Or when I first discovered cocaine: it was as if I was handed confidence on a silver platter and my brain was inundated with feel-good hormones. My brain was the ideal environment for any form of addiction to establish itself. It didn't matter what I was doing—booze, food, prescription medications, cocaine, codeine—what mattered was that I was continually avoiding my reality and numbing my feelings.
All of the drugs provided me with the one thing I was looking for: an escape. Without it, my life was far too difficult.
Codeine, however, was one of the most potent of all the medications. When you drink a lot of alcohol, as I did, you get some really bad hangovers. Chronic migraines were caused by dehydration, job stress, and my incapacity to cope with life. Pain, nausea, vomiting, aura, and light sensitivity would paralyze me. I'd spend most days in a dark room or the bathroom, waiting for it to pass. That is, until I came upon codeine. It was as if I had swallowed a magical pill that transported me to another realm of escape.
"What mattered was my persistent attempt to evade my reality and dull my sensations, regardless of the substance—booze, food, prescription medicines, cocaine, codeine."
I felt like I'd cracked the code that would allow me to keep drinking at such a high rate: four bottles of wine a day, perhaps more. Except, before I knew it, I was on codeine to get through the day—to take the sting out of life. The difficulty with this, as with any substance use disorder, is that you develop a tolerance, which means you need more and more to achieve the same impact.
I started taking my new 'wonder medicine' with wine within the first few months, ostensibly to prevent a migraine in my crazy addicted mind. Except I was so buzzed that I didn't realize how much I'd consumed. I was back at the pharmacy in no time, switching between them and buying multiple boxes per week. I'd also go to the doctor and ask for a stronger version, just in case.
"I'll never forget my friend's look of dread when he opened my chest of drawers and discovered my cache."
When my friend opened my chest of drawers and discovered my cache, I'll never forget his fear. I realized I needed to get assistance at that point. I did it just over six years ago. I sought counseling and became sober. I was fortunate in that I decided to stop taking the drugs at the same time: I needed to be sober and all that required.
Codeine's discovery was a benefit in several ways. I intensified my path to rock bottom—the point where I sought help—in a potentially dangerous way. But we don't have to go that far. What if we thought about obtaining help sooner?
Consider treating severe migraines as a message that we need to examine unhelpful and potentially harmful behavior patterns. What if, instead of seeking codeine or any other pain reliever, we chose to address the root of the problem: our desire to escape reality and our incapacity to cope with life's stresses?
You don't have to go to the same path I did—save yourself and your loved ones years of pain—you can quit using pain drugs right now.