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Unread 02-10-2013, 09:01 PM   #1
vhappy
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Default Received a sad phone call today

I received a sad phone call today from my friend. Her 23 year old nephew died of a herion overdose in Seattle. We talked about this nephew a few months ago. She is my best friend from Bellingham who I stayed with during my induction.

She knows that I used suboxone to aid with my own revcovery. Tim was 23, was in his 3rd year of college and had developed an addiction to pills. He started college wanting to be a Vet. He had a long road ahead in school, and had known sinse he was a little boy, this is what he would do. He had a bright future but finally caved to the long study hours, second job to pills. This started with ritalin, and then went to vicodin, oxy's and herion.

His grades got better for awhile, but by the second year of school, things started to fall apart and his family saw a change. He told them what was going on, the sugessted he take a semester off and attend treatment. He did very well in treatment and stayed 3 months. They used suboxone in treatment to detox him and took him off slowly over the 3 months he was there. He got out went back to school and did well. Three months later the pressure caught up and he started using again. He had every plan to let it only be occasional, but we know how that goes. He remembered how well the suboxone worked for him, told his parents and found a doctor. The doctor required one on one counseling and that he attend AA or NA meetings and get a sponsor.

He started at NA and did not click with the group. He seemed to have found a great AA group and a sponsor. He did really well, but kept quiet about his suboxone use, because he had already heard their views on it. He was at a AA meeting and another guy shared his story about opiates and all his struggles. Tim decided he had been with this group a long time and always hated that he was keeping a secret, when he finaly came clean about everything else. This always bothered him. This is where my friend first called and told me that once he told about using suboxone as one of his recovery aids, they basically shunned him. His sponsor who he had leaned on heavily, and became very good friends with, told him she could not be his sponsor. He felt it was peer pressure from the group. He agreed to get off suboxone and did a two week taper without telling anyone but his group. He even flushed his remaining pills and was cheered on by his sponsor and other members of AA. He was back in the group. I asked if he went through withdrawl when he jumped, but she didn't know. I told my friend these groups were not suppose to judge, but from what I had heard really frowned on this medication and it was best not to talk about it, just as you wouldn't talk about say your blood pressure medication. She thought it was a total cop out, and I thought so to, but didn't have any answers. They saw him at christmas, he had lost weight and seemed to be struggling but had faith on his group and his sponsor.

This is how it ended. I beleieve if he had stayed on the suboxone and not faced the very people who should have been there for him, he would be alive today. I am not saying every group is like this but his was. He trusted these people his peers, and this is where it led him. The reason he shared his story in the first place, is he thought it would help someone else.

I think the message they sent him that he was trading one drug for another and had to give back all his clean time, until he got off his suboxone. It's something that should have never happened, and the really sad thing is his group is so strong in their beliefs, I doubt they will ever see the part they played in this kids death.

I have never agreed with the idea of not talking about it. It reminds me to much of active addiction and keeping secrets. Although it is just a tool in our recovery it is an important tool. You should be able to share this and not face exclusion from the very people you are putting all your trust in.

It's just not right......I wish I had more answers for my friend.
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Unread 02-11-2013, 08:46 AM   #2
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Oh, vhappy, what a sad story. It makes me so angry when I hear that some "meetings" and some "sponsors" are still so judgmental that people are still dying because of ignorance and non-acceptance of medical assistance. Hopefully your sharing of this story will open some eyes and make some people stop and think about just exactly how important it is to support someone in their recovery, no matter what path is chosen.

I am fearful when I even read on this site how so many people still focus on "getting off" suboxone as soon as possible. Good grief almighty, suboxone is a life saving medication. There should be no shame associated with taking this medication!!! I understand that when one is in early recovery they may feel they need to depend alot on what others say. That is when it is so dangerous because so many groups, etc, do not accept the research behind this medication and can often "force" some to stop taking it. Your story is just one very sad example of what often happens when that is the case.

All we can do is what we are doing now-trying in every way to educate so that the "stigma" becomes less and the folks have a better understanding of why the medication is such a life-saver. This site serves a wonderful purpose of getting out the information and by all of us contributing it will continue to grow and get the word out to more and more people.

Being closed-minded is a very dangerous way to live. In this case a life was lost because of ignorance, fear, and stigma. I agree, his group will probably never accept any responsibility for the part they played in his death. But, we can keep on telling our stories and supporting others and hopefully the education will reach out and more and more the stigma will die. Yes, it is very sad.

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Unread 02-11-2013, 12:01 PM   #3
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Hi vhappy, I am so sorry. My sympathies to this young man's family and loved ones.

I echo nan's post completely. Not only did the closed-mindedness contribute to Tim's death; the inability to see that and/or the choice to ignore it is very scary as it could happen again.

Would you mind if I moved this young man's story to the main forum so that more people could see what the consequences of the stigma of addiction and medication-assisted treatment can be.

Again, my deepest sympathies.

Nancy
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Unread 02-11-2013, 12:26 PM   #4
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Sure ;-)
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Unread 02-11-2013, 04:44 PM   #5
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Not at all surpised about the part AA or NA played in his recovery. The sad thing is I could not count the number of old geezers in AA that frowned on the use of pills, even if they were tools like AA to aid in their recovery. And while the drunks were spouting their disdain and disapproval for the use of Sub, many of those same drunks were taking Librium or a similar benzo. To me that was not even a recovery aid. Benzos effect the CNS in the very same way as alcohol. So IMO it was a matter of those guys taking their drug of choice in liquid or pill form. They were so proud of the fact that they had not had a drink in such a long time. They were too stupid or ignorant to equate their drinking end date with their benzo start date. Bunch of hypocrits.

To have a long time sponsor to dump a person because of Sub had no business being a sponsor to begin with. There is way more issues we need help with, and the use of Sub gives some of us the opportunity, wherewithall, impetus, kick in the pants, motivation or desire we need to go to a meeting or counselor and seek out someone to talk with in the first place.

As I said, unfortunately, this story from a AA or NA standpoint is anything but atypical. People who get on Sub are seeking the same thing other recovering addicts are seeking. A sponsor, or anyone for that matter, who has known someone for very longtime is still talking to the same person once they become aware a person has been taking Sub. The proof is in the pudding as they say. But for self disclosure they would never even know the person was on an opiate. A person actions or behavior sure does not give anyone reason to suspect the use of an opiate. And once they know, they should have no cause for pause in keeping the relationship going. That can only lead in one direction. Some people would say screw it, the hell with NA or AA. Others who found a friend to help them get through tough times and struggles can really be impacted by the loss of such an ignorant person. Sponsors should be a bit like Sub and don't force a cold turkey. If you think using Sub is a sin against the Big Book and you want to withdraw your sponsorship, do it in a way that allows you to still remain friends and not just walk away from a person who had faith and trust in you. In that process a human sponsor may just find they do not need to withdraw at all. Don't make it about the use of Sub. Just keep doing what you had been doing before you knew about Sub.

It is not that easy to go up and ask someone to be your sponsor. It is a gut feeling type of thing. It should be seen as a priviledge to be asked to sponsor someone. One of the many many cliches I recall from my serenity prayer and 12 step days, is you can only keep what you have by giving it away. That is the purpose of being a sponsor. In this case there was a give away and then a throw away.

When I was first exposed to the 12 step way, I viewed the AA Big Book and the NA black book, not only as a book of short stories, but as a text book as well. Every text book I have ever heard of has revisions and new editions coming out as people's knowledge increases. I can only imagine what a set of encyclopedias look like and contain compared to the ones sold door to door back before I was born. AA and NA can keep their traditions and their steps and their repetitive stories in their liturature. But maybe it is time to update the text part of the book and not consider people who take an instrument of recovery like Sub for opiate addicts as being in less in recovery.

They need to get away from the phrase clean and sober and just use the word sober. By definition, the first God awful rehab place I went to would consider me unclean if I was taking the mood altering Tylenol PM. The founders of AA seemed like really good hearted guys and genuine in their desire to help their fellow man. It is a selfish program because the reason for helping others is to see what you were and could be again. So it is about helping yourself first and foremost. Leaving a person hanging in the wind because they are working a program of recovery that requires the use of medication designed soley for that purpose, I don't see how that helps anyone. I honestly cannot see the founders of AA turning people away. Actually a person does not have to be turned away. Being turned off bears the same consequences. And IMO people who are clean and have become addicted to meeting have something to be proud of. But given where they came from they certainly have no reason to be self-righteous with their nose in the clouds.

My rant.

Sorry about your friends 23 yr old son. Very tragic.

wayne
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Unread 02-11-2013, 07:42 PM   #6
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I am not that familar with AA or NA. I have had people bring me their signature pages to prove that they went, but honestly wouldn't know the difference of who signed them. My husband went like clockwork 6 a.m. For years. He could never really define why it kept him sober, but it did so we didn't question it.

I feel like such an injustice for this poor kid occured, but am hesitant to tell my friend after thinking about it. Yes it needs to change, but would knowing this bring the family any peace I doubt it. They were told by the sponsor, he just wasn't ready to live "clean and sober". What a crock of you know what. He was ready and reached out in every way he could. He was young and put his trust in a long established group, that should have known better than to play God or his doctor.

I don't know enough about this organization, to pass judgement or speak on their behalf. What I do know it that it has also probably saved countless lives, but I must agree 100% its time to make updates. You can still keep the foundation of their beliefs, but I have to think the founders would not want to see what is happening today.

The sad thing is they appear to be so close minded, it will continue to happen. In the end it doesnt matter how you achieve remission from any kind of addiction, it just matters that you do.

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Unread 02-11-2013, 07:57 PM   #7
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I'm very sorry V. Sadly closed minds and stigma is all over the recovery community, not merely the 12 step groups. In the 12 step groups I see this happen often. Slow we have made some good changes here, not, very little in the big picture. The lack of real education about this disease really keeps them way behind.
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Unread 02-11-2013, 08:11 PM   #8
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Hi vhappy, for a little insight, here's a link to "The AA Member - Medications and Other Drugs" brochure.
It says "This is A.A. General Service Conference-approved literature."
Updated in 2011.
http://www.aa.org/pdf/products/p-11_...ersMedDrug.pdf

From the introduction:
"Some A.A. members must take prescribed medication for serious medical problems. However, it is generally accepted that the misuse of prescription medication and other drugs can threaten the achievement and maintenance of sobriety. It may be possible to minimize the threat of if the following suggestions are heeded:
No A.A. member should "play doctor"; all medical advice and treatment should come from a qualified physician."

From the "Some alcoholics require medication." section (this pdf says page 22-29 (6 of 23):

Third paragraph:

"A.A. members and many of their physicians have described situation in which depressed patients have been told by A.A.s to throw away the pills, only to have depression return with all its difficulties, sometimes resulting in suicide."

That sponsor and group played doctor and manipulators with that young man's life. It's not the first time I've heard of this happening unfortunately. A friend of mine lost his best friend in the same manner. He was taking pain medication as prescribed after almost dying in a crash in which others died. He was told he wasn't 'clean'. He ended up dying from an overdose because he lost his 'clean time' and was shamed into thinking that he wasn't clean.

It angers me that people who do not know that taking a medication as prescribed is NOT addiction. How can they be helping people with addiction if they do not know what addiction is.

I'm sure it's not all groups and that there are good AA groups out there. And it has saved many many people, but deaths like those because of ignorance to what addiction truly is are unconscionable.

I'm sorry, as I said this just really angers me. I feel so badly for the family and loved ones.

Nancy
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Unread 02-11-2013, 08:52 PM   #9
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The stigma in AA and NA did not come from the AA founders, in fact they were of science and based on their lives and quoted thoughts, if alive today would very much welcome a medication like suboxone. Sadly this truth has been lost over the years.
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Unread 02-11-2013, 08:56 PM   #10
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I hope this serves as a strong reminder to those of us in AA or NA to stand up and fight this stigma when it shows its self. Trust me, you can win this battle. The PSA for suboxone which I did was partially filmed in an AA based sober club and AA members, longtime members took part in helping us.
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Unread 02-12-2013, 02:08 AM   #11
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Thank you, Nancy, Wayne, Nan and Mike for your responses. I did not know Tim, but I still am emotional for all the other Tims out there. Nancy the information that you shared absolutly does not support what is happening. We hear it time, and time again right here at A.S.

One by one, we can make a difference. The very place that is suppose to be inclusuve, turns out being seclusive. Suboxone use just ends up being another dirty little secret. I thought we were putting all those behind us in recovery. And even though suboxone is just one tool in recovery, for me it was a very big one. Without it, I do not think I could have, no I know I could not have the life I have now.

Is this just some of the groups, or the general stance for all of them. Addiction cost enough lives, now the stigma associated with suboxone use as a recovery tool is costing more.

I am angry also, this really has to stop.

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Unread 02-12-2013, 02:12 AM   #12
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V, now nearly seven years later, I know that I would have died. Your right, one person at a time, change will come and though we might not see it as it should be, what we do today will bring it to other generations. Education is our weapon.
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Unread 02-12-2013, 03:17 AM   #13
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Mike that is why I said the founders, themselves would have a problem with what is going on. I am certain they, especially the one being an MD, would not condone this behavior when it comes to Sub.

Don't think for a second had there been a drug like Sub for those who were alcoholics, the founders of AA would be the first to use it and devote an entire chapter to it. It is about saving lives. Taking Sub may stop wds and cravings and help people reset, but Sub does nothing to take away the need for human intervention or inter-action. Nor does it help take away the reason we want to take 100 pills a day. It gives us the opportunity to find solutions if we wish to look.

To have someone you trusted or a group of strangers, none of which you know personally, with the same life threatening disease of addiction to devalue you because they learned you had reached for and grabbed a lifeline like Sub is, in a word, appalling. If they were that concerned about a persons use of Sub they could help you work through your most pressing issues and help rewire the brain to the point of a person having the same desire to get off Sub as they had to get on Sub. And stop treating people taking Sub like it is something for which they need a vaccination so they don't catch it, whatever it is..

wayne



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Unread 02-12-2013, 03:19 AM   #14
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I am sad about this and the fact that it could have been avoided makes it worse.

AA/NA is not to blame in total. Foolish members are to blame. We should have no opinion on outside issues-period! However, because there are closed minded folk in both fellowships, I will state what I have stated time and again below.

"KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT!" No one need know what medication you take it is none of their business so why open yourself up to abuse by deciding it best all should know. Do you know what Joe Blow takes? Do you care? By tradition, no one in AA can judge you-in fact cannot even call you alcoholic without you saying it so why the heck the need to self confess what is between you and your doctor (and MAYBE your sponsor)

The only time one should talk about suboxone use is if it may benefit another (say someone is shaky and ashamed and shares in confidance that they are on sub or thinking about it as a recovery option-yes then by all means if you feel ok about it then share)

Not to sound silly but to make a point: Would I go into a meeting and share "I want you all to know I take Amaryl for my diabetes, Welbutrin for my depression, Flomax for my BHP, Zocor for my high cholesterol and buprenorphine for pain"? This is not really too silly to make the point that keeping suboxone use to yourself is a purely private affair.
When you are sober say a good year, then and only if you choose to, you will be better equipped to handle the slings and arrows of self disclosure-In other words when you have a thicker skin and the possible rejection by others will become their problem not your's!

I say once more "Shhhhh-hhhh!" this is ok to keep inside for now, it is not a dark secret but a medical choice.

God bless all

Glen

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Unread 02-12-2013, 03:26 AM   #15
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Sorry Wayne, I didnt read your post!
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Unread 02-12-2013, 03:35 AM   #16
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Glen, as your right, we can choose to share what we take or choose not to share. However, IMO that is a piss poor excuse for the actions of others in recovery judging another and black listing them.

For seven years I have belonged to a sober club which hosts nearly thirty meetings per week, I am too aware of the bullshit which can and does take place in meetings to harm others and not help them.

When we dont speak up or make excuses for such actions, we are as bad as those harming the others. I have found that most people simply need educated, the rest are idiots who need to be told to shut up. IMO
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Unread 02-12-2013, 05:48 AM   #17
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Further, lets not forget the many medical professionals in recovery who also stigmatize those us who take suboxone! This happens entirely too often and sadly they have the education and educational materials to know better. If a change could be made in this group it would go a long way in helping with the other groups!
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Unread 02-12-2013, 11:08 AM   #18
gotoffmdone
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No problem Mike I was just agreeing with your sentiments about the founder.

No one is turned away from meetings but being turned off because of Sub use and made to feel an outcase is the HiTech generic equivilent of being turned away.

wayne
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Unread 02-12-2013, 12:08 PM   #19
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Wayne, it is heartbreaking to watch people leave a meeting in tears because they take Sub and are made to feel like dirt. In turn, I have been to many meetings where it is a non issue. Locally it seems to be more on the NA side, not nearly as often on the AA side.
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Unread 02-12-2013, 12:53 PM   #20
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The actions of others should not be a concern to you once sober, that is why I suggest a person wait until they are secure in sobriety before shouting out the news that they take suboxone.

It is oft said "What someone's opinion of me is, is no business of mine!" in other words, yeah people judge bu the final judge should be ourselves. This goes back to my suggestion that one keeps their suboxone use to themselves, or of course face the BS and be sober enough to deal with the "slings and arrows"
We can better wear slippers then "carpet the world" We cannot change shallow minds but by example. Mike we differ on this basic tenet. I firmly believe we change people by our own good example-not by verbal confrontation. An oldtimer set in his ways, will stick even firmer to his "cause" wrong as it may be. If we live a good sober life that will show the benefit of sub use better then any debate.

Once more I echo, until able to accept the backlash (and some of us are) we keep sub use to ourselves unless self disclosure will benefit another (after all we are in the fellowship to help others are we not?)

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Unread 02-12-2013, 01:46 PM   #21
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Glen, when a person new to recovery is forced from a metting and is upstairs in the club room in tears and feeling like a failure, I dont care how one tries to slice the pie, those actions of others do matter. We can talk and debate until we are blue in the face of what should be, but, that reality is wrong, sadly as most of us, can also be dead wrong.
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Unread 02-12-2013, 03:16 PM   #22
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I just need to add, people new in recovery are very fragile. They need unbiased support in their quest for sobriety/addiction free living. That, to me, is quite simple. Support, support, support,--no judgment should be stated, or even inferred. Any meeting, or person present in the meeting, that shuns another because of the use of any medication should be set straight. No matter that the "old-timers", so to speak, think negatively about medication assisted treatment-they have no right to tell others it is wrong. In my opinion, especially after what Nancy has posted regarding the stance of AA(pasted below), suboxone use does not need to be kept a secret. What needs to be done is the folks who are sitting in judgement need to be given factual information that their opinions need to be kept to themselves. Sure, it is one thing to say that an individual needs to be strong and able to withstand the negative "shunning", etc, but a new person, especially, is so fragile that they may just end up relapsing and, as vhappy reminded us of, dying in order to please the ignorant folks that have shunned them because of medication.

Please, please, if you attend meetings where these close-minded individuals dominate I would hope that you would stand up and relay the AA information regarding medicine and encourage the group to stay silent on this issue. Anytime anyone sets foot in one of the rooms they are there to be supported and need all the encouragement that a group can provide. For many the first step into the rooms is such a difficult feat in itself, then to be hit with the thought that medication is a bad thing, etc, can lead to nothing good. It is up to us, who understand the new science and medical advances to help others in the group to learn. Keeping silent can very easily cause someone to relapse and die.

So, in summary, please just provide support and encouragement. Be thankful that modern times have presented opportunities that can help individuals come through difficult times. No one way is the "right" way. The important thing is someone is in the room who needs support. Just provide support, not judgement!

nan


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http://www.addictionsurvivors.org/vb...cons/icon1.gif
Hi vhappy, for a little insight, here's a link to "The AA Member - Medications and Other Drugs" brochure.
It says "This is A.A. General Service Conference-approved literature."
Updated in 2011.
http://www.aa.org/pdf/products/p-11_...ersMedDrug.pdf

From the introduction:
"Some A.A. members must take prescribed medication for serious medical problems. However, it is generally accepted that the misuse of prescription medication and other drugs can threaten the achievement and maintenance of sobriety. It may be possible to minimize the threat of if the following suggestions are heeded:
No A.A. member should "play doctor"; all medical advice and treatment should come from a qualified physician."

From the "Some alcoholics require medication." section (this pdf says page 22-29 (6 of 23):

Third paragraph:

"A.A. members and many of their physicians have described situation in which depressed patients have been told by A.A.s to throw away the pills, only to have depression return with all its difficulties, sometimes resulting in suicide."
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Unread 02-12-2013, 07:18 PM   #23
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What are you saying Mike? Not quite sure are we to "beat" the truth into them?

Sorry, but the actions of others while they may piss us off, have no bearing on how we react to them. If I call you a skinny son of a gun until I'm blue in the face, you'll laugh it off because it is not true-Same goes if someone is telling you that you are not sober, well they can say that as long as they want and the fact remains it changes neither me or my sober date of 11/4/87

Can the actions of others hurt? yeah sure can but we can grow as much from resentment in fact grow more then from disingenious pats on the back.
I also submitted that a newcomer on suboxome ought think about keeping ones mouth shut for the very reason that they may not be able to handle negative feedback. It is not up to sober members to go around telling others they are wrong-we lead by example not by mandate-this is the difference between "bleeding deacons" and "elder statesmen"

But of course Mike, AA has all kinds and that makes it interesting but I was told early on 'Nothing I can say will get you sober and nothing I can say will get you drunk" in other words, we are responsible for our actions we cannot blame it on hurt feelings (and leading with the fact that you take suboxone opens you up to the "debate")

Glen PS I want it to be clear I did not tell anyone to keep silent if that can benefit someone however, if you must talk about suboxone then you must expect hot debate from those who do not understand-If you can take the heat then by all means stay in the kitchen if not button you lip
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Unread 02-12-2013, 11:00 PM   #24
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Glen, I made it clear, as I used the word educate many times. I dont know where you come up with the word beat from that.


Nan, that is exactly the point, those new need support and care, understanding and an ear, not an ear full of negative BS. They have not yet learned what to keep private and what not to. Well said Nan.
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Unread 02-12-2013, 11:10 PM   #25
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Glen, seven years ago I walked into that sober club and nearly thirty meetings per week, filled with a lot of stigma. Several years later I was voted to the board of directors and the members there helped with a suboxone PSA. No one had to be beat and positive change took place. In fact we even did special educational meetings on the medical biological issues of addiction and the science behind. Educting each other in that fashion made our 12 step meetings more productive. Was if perfect? No, but, together we all took some positive steps in a good direction. However, that didnt happen by ignoring those dishing out stigma, it happened by enguaging them and if need be, telling them to stop it.
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Unread 02-13-2013, 12:59 AM   #26
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I dunno maybe saying they are idiots and need to shut up sounds a little on the offensive side?

Mike we mostly agree, I think our loggerhead is misunderstanding. To put it simply, if you are worried about what people are going to say about you using suboxone-then keep quiet! why open this can of worms-The story that started this thread makes it clear it is too late for this person but, I write in hopes that the newcomer understands that he may catch a Sh--storm if he discloses his sub use therefore he ought to think long and hard about doing so-I think this is prudent advice.

Now is you think I am co signing the behavior of the "shunners" then I am totally misunderstood. I tried to make clear that AA traditions make sure we have no debates such as this and medications are an "outside" issue-Fact is if a sponsor shuns someone they are not sober and the sponsee is better off getting a sober member as a sponsor. We however are responsible for our actions and harsh as it may sound, this person choose to pick up heroin and therefore is responsible for his own fate sad as it is.

Yes in a perfect AA world all would follow the traditions and be non judging but we know this is not life. So what do we do? I say if indeed your skin is thick enough and you want to share your suboxone use (for what reason I'm not sure, I do not believe one is "keeping secrets" by not sharing his medication list) Then do so! But face the fact that it is not going to be easy. A sober member should tell their story and how they got sober only! A sponsor has the added responsibility of showing how he lived the 12 steps only! To judge another even if they come to the meetings drunk or high (which happens often) is dead wrong and against almost all traditions. (I hope this makes my point as to how I feel about the people who shunned this poor fellow)

I'd add if your reasoning is to change minds, then again I say it is best to do this by example. If people are attracted to the sobriety, then in good time they will know all you want them to know about how you did it.

Maybe one day it will be accepted by all members but until then be wary and disclose only under the right reason.

Glen

Last edited by theswan; 02-13-2013 at 01:04 AM.. Reason: speeling grammer
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Unread 02-13-2013, 03:01 AM   #27
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Glen, I dont understand your need to spin my words and message. This isnt the off topic board, it is rather personal in terms of experience. Nevertheless, I dont think I can share anymore on this. The bottmline is some folks simply are rude, not many, but some and when they make no effort to change to help another and only wish to harm then yes, they need to be told so their actions should be stood up to. This is real life and lives are ruined forever or worse, lost.
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Unread 02-13-2013, 09:32 AM   #28
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Im so sorry Vhappy, I am just now reading this post from you. I am really sad about this, and I totally agree that things should change with the stigma associated with suboxone. I remember when my son went to the ER and told the doctor there he was on suboxone and the DOCTOR told him that thats not recovery, its only trading one medication for another!!!!!! I was so mad, because he was thinking that if a doctor is telling him its wrong, then it must be wrong. I hate it, it makes me soooooo mad. And now another life lost, all because Tim was listening to these people who obviously have no idea the severity opiate addiction can be. This scares me Vhappy, because of my own son. Memories come flooding back. I know how the mother feels, its horrible finding your child like that. I am just lucky it didnt end that way like Tim...
Vhappy, Im so sorry for the loss of your friends son. I just cant put into words how heavy it makes my heart.
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Unread 02-13-2013, 11:08 PM   #29
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I truley want to understand why it is said not to talk about it, and if you do, you best be prepared for the consequences. I don't understand this especially after reading what Nancy and Nan posted. I think this is a good topic of discussion, and wouldn't offend me in any way, if anyone wants to discuss this further.
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Unread 02-13-2013, 11:58 PM   #30
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I agree V and by talking about it, we not only help and educate ourselves, but, also others and they in turn do the same. Locally though not everyone accepts the fact that medical aids are helpful, most now do and at the very least they have grown enough to understand it is not an issue to judge others on. That has happened by speaking about it. Naturally some will stay rude and offering only stigma and when they do it to where it can harm another, they are told to stop.
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Unread 02-14-2013, 02:01 AM   #31
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The last thing we need is more stigma especially coming from very imperfect people with basically the same problem as we are dealing with.

In NA they specifically say in their reading material at the start of the meeting that, if you are using at the moment and Sub is considered just that, then just sit and listen and get with someone after the meeting. What if a person on Sub wanted to speak on an issue they were having and hear the perspectives of everyone willing to offer it.

We have suffered in silence long enough. AA and NA creed is that we suffer and heal together.

A person may say other's opinion may not matter to them but we are social beings and how we are judged is how we are treated. People have had sub Drs who have had a low opinion of a them and discharged them because of that opinion. Tell me that would not matter.

Stigma matters and this disease is about the only one that carries one. A person who comes down with lung cancer because they were addicted to cigarettes for many years, do not get the same shit eating look as we do.

wayne

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Unread 02-15-2013, 02:02 AM   #32
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I agree Wayne and it sucks. Heck even my pain doctor is now getting me to reduce while i'm thinking to myself that i'm going along with it because I want to please him.

Funny because when I was dosing upward to find a proper dose that worked on my pain, he was slow but did continue to go up-Now that I was at a dose that worked well, it seems the idea is to get me back down (I suppose I have to stop the doctor pleasing and stand up for my rights to pain control however, the issue is that is is darn hard to find any doctor willing to provide suboxone-percocet? heck yes but not buprenorphine!) My last pain doctor in 2008 before I started sub when I asked about suboxone he said 'that's crap' and does not work on pain. Shallow minds are not only in the rooms of AA/NA

By the way, I have not been to NA in many years and did not know they actually told people to not share if they were on suboxone. I see this as braking traditions but each group has a right to wrong via "automony". Sad and one can only hope that as more and more avail themselves to this treatment (bupe) and get and remain sober members that things will change. Take heart that change will come albeit slowly.

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Unread 02-15-2013, 03:37 AM   #33
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Amen Wayne!
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Unread 02-15-2013, 07:42 PM   #34
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Wayne anothe's opinion is still none of mine-I stick by that if however that persons opinion cause's then to in someway harm you then that is a horse of a different color. My thought is about those who think ill of me out of their igrorance, I should feel bad about that?

The ones in AA or NA who think bady of me because I use sub and there are a few because they have told others of their "opinion" Well, I can care less what they think of me and would be better off not knowing their opinion therefore "anothers opinion of me is no business of mine"-I hope that clears it up.

Apples and oranges opinion Vs one's action two different things

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Unread 02-15-2013, 07:49 PM   #35
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Vhappy, I did not say to not talk about it if you can handle the flack-I can but I have been in AA for over 25 years and have grown able to deal with resentments (some days better then others of course, lol I'm not God)

If you really have to discuss you use of suboxone then go ahead but know there is a world of igrorance and one in my opinion, would be much better off keeping it to oneself and sponsor (if the sponsor cannot accept it then a new sponsor may be in order)

I think one need search their motives for self disclosing-is it for the betterment of the fellowship or is the reason that you want to change hearts and minds?

I just believe for the newcomer, discreation is the better part of valor.

(I know my spelling is off maybe some can tell me how to use the spellcheck here)

Thanks

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Unread 02-16-2013, 12:16 AM   #36
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Thats what I worry about is the newcomer, that has had to get up the nerve to even come to a meeting, has no idea that mentioning the medication is not going to go over to well, and never returns to the meeting. We have seen it posted here like that several times. I believe that's what Nan was talking about. I know I was terribly vulnerable at first!

something has to change, if it is costing lives. Tim had no idea of the fallout from metioning what was helping him so much with his recovery. Once he mentioned it, he felt un-welcome and a outcast. He wanted back in the group so bad, he quit his suboxone, the group cheered him on. The withdrawls were so bad he relapsed and died. I am not trying to argue or dismiss anyone's feelings, just trying to understand. If AA has no opinion of peoples medications, why are people in these meeting expressing their opinions?

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Unread 02-16-2013, 12:57 AM   #37
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V, I have seen it happen here in meetings around the city often, mostly here in the NA rooms. The only way to deal with it is to expose it when takes place and then confront. Most once they realize how damaging it can be are sorry and make real efforts in the right direction, the others, well they must be dealt with in a more cut and dry fashion and exposed for what they are.

The worst type of stigma is that which comes from inside the recovery community. This is a very serious and important topic.
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Unread 02-17-2013, 01:03 PM   #38
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That is such a sad story and totally believable. I was not allowed to share and was considered dirty and the meetings here. They would say when are you ever going to get clean? The sad part is you go for support so you can safely get off but are shunned. I felt so much worse after going so I stopped. I felt like a failure and guilty for being on suboxone. What I needed was support and encouragement. We beat ourselves up enough. We don't need a whole group to join in. I am so sorry about your friends son.
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