Oxy-contin addiction stories??

Somebody close to me, (no, not me!) is battling addiction with this crap. I was wondering if I could get some stories out of people who are familiar with this drug, mostly addicts, ex-addicts.
The person is in detox as of this morning for a week…
How can I deal with this? Should I be mean? Should I be nice? I want to be supportive (and I am) but I want to use the best approach…
I am very scared and confused, I never used drugs, hate them, and don’t understand the need for them…
I am very much lost…

Did they get the addiction from mis-using the drug, or were they prescribed the drug by doctor?

No, it wasn’t prescribed… Somebody had some one day I guess, the person tried it, and again and then ended up just buying some on a regualr basis.

Carine, for starters, don’t be “mean” to this guy. If he’s in rehab voluntarily (as opposed to court-ordered) then he obviously is aware that his use is a problem. Just be his friend and treat him the same way you always had. Ask how he’s doing, offer to listen if he wants to talk, but don’t push for details he’s not comfortable giving. If–at some point in the future–you know that he’s using again (and be prepared for this, slip ups are more common than one-shot successful detoxes are) call him on it. One of the main characteristics of an addict, IME, is that they think they’re fooling everyone. Don’t let him live in that delusion.
When it comes down to it though, nothing you do or don’t do will affect his addiction. He’s going to have to make the decision to kick, and stick with it no matter what his circumstances. Someone who uses their relationships or life situation to justify falling off the wagon was never really ready to be on the wagon in the first place.
I used oxys for about a year before moving on to dilaudids so I do have some experience with the drug. After kicking and slipping a handful of times, I finally ditched the whole mess and have been clean now for nearly two years. My ex-husband was, and still is, also an addict. His struggle was incredibly painful to watch, and more frustrating to deal with than anything I’ve ever been through before. His inablility to kick directly led to our breakup–mainly because he kept trying to get me using again so that I’d stop trying to get him to clean up. Point being that I’ve been there, done that from both sides of your situation.
Feel free to e-mail me if you need to talk or have any questions. And good luck to you and your friend both.

Oxy-Contin is nothing to mess with, prescribed or not. I actually know one addict who got clean just so her doctor would put her on it!

Talk to the staff at your friend’s rehab, they will be very helpful and have lots of experience helping loved ones cope. His sobriety will not hinge on how you treat him, but a supportive-but-no-bullshit approach can help.

I wish your friend luck. Most people have a very hard time getting & staying sober. I know- next week, I will be celebrating 12 years clean & sober, and it’s no walk in the park. But it can be done.

If you are really emotionally involved with him, find Al-Anon. It could really help.

Oxy’s are dangerous. They feel so good, but they will do awful things to you if you misuse them.

Thank you so much for the replies…
It’s good to know that you can kick the habit, even if it is hard.
He had quit and slipped back 3 or 4 times and checked himself in the clinic, on his own, so I believe it is the first step. He knows for a fact it is bad and really wants to quit, but so did he the first three times.

I was talking to my doctor about OxyContins awhile back, and he told me about a medical report he’d read…evidently there was a woman in the D.C. area who was so hopelessly addicted to them that she began to go beyond faking pain and injuries to get them and ACTUALLY STARTED injuring herself…sounds like a urban myth, but that’s what my doctor told me.

They’re also godawful expensive on the street…much more expensive than a equivelent amount of heroin would sell for. A 80 mg. Oxy sells for between 30 and 50 dollars, depending on the area, and the tolerance one builds up is amazing. Many Oxy users wind up going over to heroin simply because it’s cheaper.

I would second EJsGirl’s opinion. Be supportive but non-tolerant of “slip-ups”. Addicts frequently find a way to justify going back to the shit, and if you’re going to be there, you shouldn’t even listen to excuses, just flat out tell him he’s screwing up and insist he goes back in for treatment.

I work on a Med-Surg unit in a 1,000 bed hopital where all the patients who are not intubated come to detox from all sorts of substances. Probably half of our patients are detoxing from oxy’s. The next most common is alcohol then xanax then heroin. Many of our patients are polysubstance abusers.

Believe it or not, heroin users seem to have an easier time than oxy users. Most everyone detoxing from opiates has a lot of muscle and abdominal cramping but oxy detoxers are miserable.

I don’t know how anyone that miserable would ever start to use again. But they do. I forget exact numbers but oxycodone is more addictive than crack or heroin. My sister and her daughter are both addicted to narcotics and it has torn our family apart. They clean up for a while then slip back into it. It is a living nightmare.

I wish your friend all the luck in the world. He/she is going to need it.

I have so much to say on this I don’t know where to begin. My wife of 20 years was addicted for many years. She was, at the time, the most lying deceitful dredge of humanity that ever walked the earth. It happened so slowly that I wasn’t even aware of it. I’ve never been a user. I just figured we were going through the 7 year itch. I was busy working full time, then going to my part time job in the evenings. When we did have common days off, she seemed to sleep a lot. When you’re involved with that person everyday, you don’t give it much thought, because it just gradually got that way. She worked for a pharmacy. On a selfish note, the beginning of the worst part of my life was when she came home from work, and said she’d gotten fired for stealing large amounts of oxysomething. The pharmacy had videotaped her skimming. We also owed the pharmacy $10,000. Welcome to hell. I immediately put her in detox for a couple of weeks. I was stupid enough to believe that this would do the trick. I didn’t tell anyone. I skipped out of half of work to take care of the kids. I told them that mom was in the hospital, but didn’t tell them why. They were young, and I was able to let that be enough. Her parents would call and ask to speak to her, I would make up some excuse. I couldn’t face the truth, or the questions that would come if I told anyone. I was afraid people would judge her, or worse, me! She finally got out of rehab, acted like she was going to meetings. She hooked up with a guy from detox that was having a ‘tough time’ staying sober. Without going into a lot of gory detail, several times she had to go “have a cup of coffee” with him was (I found out later) just an excuse to whore around with him. Meanwhile I think she’s on the up and up. Her parents are coming in town for a visit. She’s never gotten along well with her parents and would always freak out when they came for a visit. This was no exception. When they arrived, she had to run to the store. About six hours later I got call that she was in jail for trying to get a fake perscription filled. Another $5,000 - $10,000 later and another stint in rehab, and we’re going to try to get this black mark removed from her record. To do so she has to ‘be good’ for a couple of years. Around that time I took a job here in Atlanta. We moved. We couldn’t find an AA place ‘convenient’ enough for her, so she never really went. This was around the time that her repressed memories started up. Turns out she’s been sexually abused by her father. This time I do it right. I read everything I could find about it. I am, for the first time, able to step back and see that she’s a classic case of self destructive behaviour. Suicide attempts, cutting, you name it. The loving “I’m there for you” side of me feels sorry for her, and wants to help her get better. The selfish side of me says “Boy, did I get screwed in the relationship department”. I still have moments where I flutter back and forth. She doesn’t really drink or do drugs anymore. I couldn’t take it if she did. I’d kick her out of the house. She’s still taking a shit load of medicine for depression. I almost forgot about the grand mal seizures she began having about four years ago. She was at work one day when her eyes rolled back in her head, and clunk! She was out like a light. She’s such a medical oddity that she practically has her own shelf in the pharmacy. It’s sad, but all trust is gone. I’d like to get it back, but it’s tough. We’re talking things like if she said she was drinking a glass of water, I’d have to look inside the cup to make sure it was clear.

What’s the point of all this? I guess it’s to say don’t take anything personally your friend does or says. They’re sick. Stastically speaking, people rarely change, and it’s probably going to get worse before it gets better.

Sorry to bring everybody down.


Thank you for the personal stories, I imagine it is very hard to share this kind of things.
One a side note, I realized that my friend had legitimate prescriptions because of a bad neck, the pills were hydrocotone… Probably didn’t help to take those at first…
From what I understand it started as a recreational pass time… at parties, because somebody had a pill and made you try it. But I suspect, he fell into depression at the same time and the pills “helped”. I can’t figure out which started first, the depression or the pills, because they of course nurture each other. I think he has a lot of unanswered issues in his past, family, etc… that he refuses to face.
He called me from detox, he says most of the guys there are in for heroin and that all they talk about is how they want to do it again, and can’t wait to get out to shoot up… Now i am scared from him being there…!
He also says they don’t do anything all day,I thought they’d have meetings, councelling, etc… but so far, they only had one meeting… It is not what I expected …

I see that you are from Boston, as I am. I am wondering which detox he is in—believe me, they are not all created equal. I used to work at one.
They should be having many meetings. They should also have AA and NA groups coming in nightly to speak to the patients in detox. They should have counselors (many of them ex-addicts) available to talk to the patients at any time.
These are all shoulds. A lot of times, the reality is that detox is a place to hold someone for a few days (as long as insurance will pay) while they go through the actual physiological detoxification.
The biggest ‘should’ I can think of—they should be helping him set up aftercare, be it more inpatient or an outpatient program.
Let me know if you want more info about places in Boston and I’ll see if I can help.

Iorene, I hear you I thought that was it was, meetings etc… He did tell me he had two meetings, they put a movie on for 20 minutes, all the guys were laughing because they had “seen it a million times”, they were sleeping thru it, etc… The other meeting an ex-alcoolic talked to them. He tells me none of them take it seriously and that they are here to kill time or just because they run out of money and can’t buy heroin so they go for the methadone.
He is in Danvers…
Could you give me a couple of names for “good” places? I am also looking for a Psychatrist… basically, after care. I need a game plan!

Jeez, that really sucks. My hopsital program was fantastic, out here in CA. I don’t suppose he could get out here…

Lots of facilities closed because insurance companies are much less willing to pay for treatment. Many people are forced into indigent detox places that leave plenty to be desired, or just have to tough out the detox themselves and go to meetings on their own.

E3, your wife could find no “convenient” meetings in Boston?!? Classic. I hope you guys are ok, it’s hell for the addict but sometimes I feel sorrier for the SO- all of the insanity and none of the “fun.”

Oh, yeah—it’s the end of the month. Social Security Checks don’t come until the 1st or the 3rd, so detoxes see a huge jump in population, mostly people who don’t really want to be there.

2 good places I can think of off the top of my head—McLean Hospital has both an IP unit and a day program for substance abuse, as well as Psychiatrists who specialize in substance abuse/dual diagnosis. The other place is Cambridge Hospital, which has a lot of the same services. Not surpising, since they are both Harvard teaching hospitals. A lot depends on what kind of insurance he has, of course. Mt Auburn Hospital also used to have a decent program. I’m not 100% sure what it’s like now.

Maybe find out what/where his insurance is willing to cover and go from there?

[slight hijack] I have a question for folks - when you are talking about Oxy do you mean Oxycodone (Vicodin) or just Oxycontin. I’m just curious. I take Oxycodone for my migraines. My brain chemistry is such that it does almost nothing for me and never has - I doubt I could get addicted because it has so little affect on me. I’ve had some days where I’ve taken several, then the next day I take none with no withdrawal. I got a script for Percocet once, and that was no more effective than the Vicodin. Even Demerol or Dilaudid aren’t that effective.

In this case, we are talking about Oxycontin Porcupine. But I believe they are related, right? anybody?!

Vicodin used to the the Wicked Witch of the prescription drug addiction scene, but has been bumped by OxyContin. I don’t have a copy of the PDR near me so I don’t know if they are both in the same class of drug.

Paging Qadgop the Mercotan!


I actually mis-spoke - Vicodin is Hydrocodone. I think both Oxycontin and Hydrocodone have Oxycodone in them (that’s the narcotic part), mixed with different things.

I was addicted to speed at one point in life, but I quit cold turkey. This approach may not work for everyone, tho’.

My own personal advice is to stay away from Oxy-Contin. A couple of buddies were doing it one night and I chewed up one tablet just out of curiousity. I had to puke (and I had eaten before going out) and couldn’t drink 101/2 beers of the 12-pack I had bought. I drank one before taking the tablet and then managed 1/2 of another. My stomach felt nauseous the entire evening, and I didn’t think the buzz was worth that much.

Any drug that prevents you from drinking is evil beyond description in my book.