sister is addict but also severely in need of meds...what to do

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2mom
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Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 23
   Posted 1/15/2007 10:25 AM (GMT -6)   
My 47 yr old sister has long history depression, anxiety, agorapgobia etc...She also is alcoholic/former drug addict and is a drug seeker. also diagnosed bipolar recently. she says she feels panic 24/7. no doc will give her clonopin anymore as she abuses it...sdmittatly. she wants a high. she sees no alternative now but to find another doc because she feels its only thing that helps but she is concerned she'll abuse it again and she had a heck of a time detoxing. she lives in another state and is staying w/ mom...not for long though...doesn't know where she'll go. was in 30 day program and left after 2 weeks. whaat do addicts do when they aren't supposed to take the drugs that help????please any advice. ps   she says she has hallucinations too.

hopeful82
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 2433
   Posted 1/15/2007 11:05 AM (GMT -6)   
That is a really tough situation, I really feel for your sister because drug addiction and mental illness often go hand in hand. I have a feeling that a knowledgable psychiatrist who knows about addiction and mental illness could really help your sister. Also, has she ever been in counseling for her depression/anxiety? These are all things that she should do, I think the counseling could not only help her with the mental illness part, but also the addiction part. And a psychiatrist would know most about medications that might be best for her knowing her addiction history. Unfortuantely, benzodiazepines like klonopin just might not be an option for her at this point, but certainly she could take antidepressants that could help. As far as the hallucinations, that would definitly be something that again a psychiatrist could address, and as far as I know, the medications used to treat hallucinations are non-addictive. Best wishes to you!! I hope she gets the help she needs.
Ali
 
Moderator for HIV/AIDS 
 
"The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
 
 
 


Green Lantern
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Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 105
   Posted 1/15/2007 12:03 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm an alcoholic/drug addict as well.  I tried a 30-day inpatient rehab, but left after 2 days.  I started drinking again.  I tried AA several times and stayed sober for a while, but never did any of the work and started drinking again.  I was finally kicked out of my house, put in a 6-week outpatien program, and had to attend 5 AA meetings a week.  This time, though, I had bottomed out so I was desperate and did what those crazy AA people told me to do, and it worked.  The outpatient rehab referred me to a pdoc because my depression and anxiety scores on their 600 question test were some of the worst they had ever seen.  My pdoc specializes in addiction, so he knew my deal.  My anxiety the first 4 months of sobriety was through the roof and he tried everything he could short of benzos to help me out.  Finally, he realized it was too much for me to take and he put me on Xanax.  He gave me all the warnings of why I should not be on it and to be very careful.  He also told me what withdrawal would be like and he was right it sucks, but at the time I saw no alternative.  Between him and my insurance company I am pretty well monitored on how much I can take.  sure there have been instances where I took more than I should, but then I had to deal with the withdrawal of not being able to take as many later.  Bottom line, if your sister needs these meds she should find someone who will administer them safely and at the appropriate doses so you sister can't abuse them.  You may also try getting her into an AA/NA program, some of it sounds crazy but it works.  I've been sober now for 13 months and before I couldn't stay sober until noon.  Good luck.

Bipolar Mixed


2mom
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 23
   Posted 1/15/2007 3:23 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for the replys.She has been in AA for years but only half heartedly. She has a psych doc and has been on everything...there always seems to be an excuse w/ her though.Sometimes i think she wants to keep using drugs and being like this...that sounds awful...i too suffer from panic/anxiety and depression so I know how it can be.She'll do well for awhile sometimes in a new situation/location then the novelty wears off and she's completley helpless again. she's a brilliant woman too and its such a shame.I don't kn ow if there is anything anyone can do at this point...family has been through it all...i go to alanon ...that helps. At this point i think she has to do it herself....thoughts?

hopeful82
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 2433
   Posted 1/15/2007 4:55 PM (GMT -6)   
Yes, unfortunately it sounds like she's had all the opportunities presented to her, but isn't taking advantage of them. You can't help someone who doesn't want to help themselves. All you can do is be supportive and let her  know how much she deserves to get better and that you'll be there for her. But it really is up to her to take the steps needed to get clean and get things under control. Its sad, but there really isn't much you can do to "force" her to get better. She has to want it for herself.

Ali
 
Moderator for HIV/AIDS 
 
"The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
 
 
 


Green Lantern
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 105
   Posted 1/15/2007 4:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Your last statement is dead on.  She has to do it for herself.  The first time I went to AA, I did it to get my wife off my back.  Same for the first time I went to rehab.  This time, I'm doing it for myself.  There's a phrase in the AA big book:  "half measures availed us nothing."  If you don't do everything the program suggests, you are just waisting your time, because you will drink again.  I'm glad you are going to alanon, an alcoholic causes issues with the entire family, not just themselves.  Hopefully she will come around at some point, I know it took me a long time get there.

Bipolar Mixed


2mom
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 23
   Posted 1/15/2007 5:19 PM (GMT -6)   
thanks again. i've actually been in alanon for a year because of my husbands drinking. I have finally laid off him and am just doing what i need to do. I'm happy for u that u have seen the light ...I wish my husband would. Anyways...this isn't a 12 step board :-) .I'm going to share these thoughts w/ my mom as she needs affirmation that she is not abandoning her mentally ill daughter.thank you. nancy

Howlyncat
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Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 1/16/2007 6:34 AM (GMT -6)   
Glad you got great input I am sober since 79 and it was AA that got me to that point as well plus losing a hubby in the interrim ..........
Please let your mom know she cannot help her she HAS to want to be fixed first and foremost like others have said AND it is NOT her fault ........
I am sorry for all you and your family must be going thru
Your sister needs help thats the bottom line til she accepts that and hits rock bottom she will continue on this path
I dont want to sound negative at all
** It can be done I promise you that IF she puts all of SELF into it ***
Keep us posted please
Lyn
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                God Bless .........Lyn
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krissie
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 109
   Posted 1/16/2007 3:20 PM (GMT -6)   
I have had to deal with people I love that have addiction issues.....My dad drank cases of beer  and i mean cases of beer a week, very violent and abusive....never went for help, but about 6 years ago he was diagonsed with a blood dysgrasia that was like Ca., but not, but he had to take oral chemo, which did ot mix with the alcohol.  He quit cold turkey and I have no clue how.  after all those years he was setting himself up for a medical emergency.  I also have a friend that  became addicted to prescription meds and such.  
she tried rehab and then tried AA......AA/NA did not work for her.  She found a great doc that knew about addiction and illness.  She was self medicating.  She did go through a fresh start program and it helped.  She does have underlying M.I. and she is on antidepressant and does take benzo's, but she is monitored.  Only one doc and one pharmacy..She had to sign that she woul stick to that. 
 
She had hit rock bottom, and that is why she sought help.  As a friend I tried to be there for her even if it brought back memories of my dad, but her parents and siblings disowned her.  She literally just had me.  It is so important that people with addictions have someone in their life......not to enable them...but to be there when they need food or clothes.....to be there when they need to cry.  Housing them and giving them cash doesn't work........they will use that money for things they should not.  Giving them a place to stay, doesn't help them either unless they are working hard at their sobriety
 
 
Krissie
 

Howlyncat
Elite Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 1/17/2007 9:03 AM (GMT -6)   
Great input Krissie
Very well stated and so very true
Luvs
Lyn


    Contribute today to support Healing Well Forums...Donate @
 
 
 Never compromise your self nor your dignity...with that ...My God
 Family and Great Friends ........I have it All
 
 Dream, Reach and Believe ......You can Do It........We are Here For You 
                God Bless .........Lyn
Make The Best of The New year .......You Can and Will Reach your Goals
                              Loads of Love n Support
                                        Lyn   
Co Mod @ Crohns
 Moderator@ Alzheimer's 
 Moderator @ Anxiety/Panic
 
 
                                  
                          
                                  


normalsnofun
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Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 2500
   Posted 1/17/2007 9:16 AM (GMT -6)   
Great advice guys...

It all seems to treck back to the old joke: How many psychologists does it take to change a light bulb...1 but the lightbulb has to want to change...

No one can do it for you...You have to get to a point where you NEED to do it
--Michelle
Moderator Anxiety/Panic Forum

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Howlyncat
Elite Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 1/18/2007 6:24 AM (GMT -6)   
That is a good one lil one for sure
Love ya to pieces
mom
    Contribute today to support Healing Well Forums...Donate @
 
 
 Never compromise your self nor your dignity...with that ...My God
 Family and Great Friends ........I have it All
 
 Dream, Reach and Believe ......You can Do It........We are Here For You 
                God Bless .........Lyn
Make The Best of The New year .......You Can and Will Reach your Goals
                              Loads of Love n Support
                                        Lyn   
Co Mod @ Crohns
 Moderator@ Alzheimer's 
 Moderator @ Anxiety/Panic
 
 
                                  
                          
                                  

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