A message to my North American friends

Discussion in 'I Have a Question...' started by ToHelp, Jan 12, 2009.

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  1. ToHelp

    ToHelp Well-Known Member

    Note: This forum gets more traffic than the SA forum so I'll post a heads-up in there to let them know.

    short and to the point
    If you have some advanced benzodiazepine dependence, we all know the only safe way to kick it is under close medical supervision.

    But I beseech you BEFORE considering inpatient treatment care be sure to read this.

    I was just released from a six-day stay and was shocked at the backward thinking and misinformation dolled out by our psychiatrists and group therapists alike.

    my horror story
    Are you ready?

    I was taken off phenobarbital and Klonopin cold turkey from stratosphereic levels and placed on.... Depakote??? to ensure I didn't seize. This is called minimal-level care to protect worst-case outcomes--NO titration, NO treatment for the incredible anxiety, restlessness.

    In general, NO quarter, no mercy whatsoever. Welcome to America.

    I was beat DOWN though, lowest ebb and there nothing I could do. My psych informed me, "Nope. Here, when patients come in addicted to any benzo, I just C/T them and wean them from phenobarb for exactly five days--then stop everything.

    OMG y'all. FIVE DAYS to get over a benzo addiction. THAT IS MEDIEVAL, which is why I linked to a page collectively authored by our boys across the pond.

    Let me tell you. On the early, cold morning when I was discharged, I had nystagmus (jerky involuntary movement of the eyes) and trouble focusing so bad that I could literally could not see straight.

    PLEASE read the link provided. It demonstrates a diametrically different approach to bzd detox btwn. th U.S. and U.K.

    Well this was MY experience and I live in the state of Virginia. You may well have other locales in different states which will take a more humane approach (namely, titrating you on a the same or cross-tolerant drug).

    This is my message. Don't get into deep shit. Nobody's going to really care, personally. Do Not order your medicines online.

    LOL, let me tell you, when I got home on Friday 1/09/09, I was saved because some VERY helpful meds I'd ordered in mid December had arrived and I literally had some "relief" packages awaiting my return.

    Ecck. A mess though, and it would be interesting to find out how others how fared detoxing in the U.S.

    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 12, 2009
  2. ToHelp

    ToHelp Well-Known Member

    Gotta add:

    I don't know what kind of shape I would still be in now had I not reinstated Klonopin (Rivotril) coming on 72 hours later and frankly I cringe to image.

    My C/T withdrawal yielded multifaceted, severe symptoms bordering on what's called withdrawal psychosis in which you lose all touch with reality.

    Think. You have a cacophony of neurons firing in an electrical storm. With minimal or depleted GABA A pre- and post-synaptic reception, there is little to no GABAnergic activity.

    (GABA is the major inhibitory neurotranmitter in your brain.)

    Obviously I am feeling much more staballized/calm now but shit. Again, what if the relief meds hadn't arrived?

    Don't even want to imagine. :no:

    Oh and I mentioned backwards and misinformed "education" being given out by our group therapist. Well, one example is she claimed Klonopin (Rivotril) is the least potent benzo on the market when we all know that Xanax and Klonopin are THE most potent and addicting benzodiazepines synthesized to date.

    Whole dang thing was a farce and you wonder 'WHERE DO THEY FIND THESE PEOPLE'? Are they even vetted? you know, tested?

  3. ToHelp

    ToHelp Well-Known Member

    You know, I am going to go on and express my disappointment at the lack of love and attention this thread has received. Sixty-five hits and not one acknowledgement, if only to empasize. That hurts. My God I've been a contributing member on SF for a year and many times have dipped into topics that didn't concerned me but nonetheless caused me concern enough to contribute. This has been a huge traumatic few months in my life and I seek refuge here for support and receive none. It really makes me sad.
  4. jameslyons

    jameslyons Well-Known Member

    Hey there, first time through:)

    Sorry you're feeling disregarded---you know how people get with lots of text and links. :)blink:)

    It sounds like you had a god awful experience. I've never been through a heavy detox period but your experiences sound nightmarish. American psych hospitals are horrible places to be without having a chemical or psychotic episode...

    I'm not really into taking too many pharmaceutical medicine--alcohol and pot works for me :). How are you feeling today? Are you weaning yourself?

  5. ToHelp

    ToHelp Well-Known Member

    Oh hey JAAAAAMES. Thanks stopping by.

    Yes, I am at once disillusioned and saddened and to be honest bitter :puke: by the lack of empathy on display.

    WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO :grouphug:

    People should be ashamed. 100 hits now. What, you have to kill yourself to be loved on SF?

    Again, I thank you for stopping in. YES, titrating, cutting back. I d/c'd the stupid Depakote back on Friday, first day out. lol

    As I told my pdoc: You know, we're treating breakthrough seizures (seizure suppression) and ONLY that, aren't we?

    There was no humanity in my detox of the phenobarbital; subjective suffering--that which is felt intently by the individual, they did not care about.

    Oh but gran mal SEIZURE see, the hospital in my studied opinion (and not being paranoid) did not want to chance that on grounds of bad image by the hospital review board. (Seizure can lead to nasty things including death.)

    * * * * * *

    Well of course it's nothing I didn't bring on myself but may the Lord be with you if you get caught in ANY addiction in the U.S. for times have really changed over the years.

    Anybody remember "addictionology." lol Hell we had a board-certified addictionologist on staff in the nineties. That has largely turned out to be a fad around here--no more addiction-specialist anything.

    Nopers, they just get you dry (alcohol) or clean and pour on a bunch of neuroleptics and antideppresants as though they are God's answer to everything.

  6. Rachel123

    Rachel123 Well-Known Member

    Sounds like you had a horrible experience. I've never expeirenced any sort of detox so I can't even imagine what it must've been like.
    I'm glad you're okay now and you're weaning yourself. :)
  7. ToHelp

    ToHelp Well-Known Member

    Truly, I am in the wrong "house" :smile: here because nobody cares enough to post as you did. This is not to condemn SF. There is just a breach of people's experiences and people would I guess would rather obsess about committing suicide than anything else. My presence does not even seem to be supported in the Substance Abuse forum and so I have moved on and in two days' time am far better for that change.

    Rachel you're a sweetheart for dropping by and I thank you and hope you are doing swellfully. :tongue:

  8. Fern17

    Fern17 Well-Known Member


    I am new here...I do care...but I don't know what it's like to be in your shoes--and I won't pretend to know. But I can only say that it's awful how you were treated. I hope you'll at least consider writing a letter to the powers-that-be about this.

    I can say that when I was hospitalized in the psych ward, and one of the nurses was a complete BITCH to me, I wrote out what happened and slipped it under the door of her boss.

    He called me in and actually sat down and talked to me, listened to me, even though I was a freaky psych patient. It goes to show that sometimes people actually will listen to us sometimes. It's a matter of finding the right people.
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