Part 1. (participate so i can finish Part 2)

I read an article today about prescription pain killer (narcotics) addiction, drug seeking, doctor shopping, pharmacy shopping, and how this is locally becoming a very serious and rapidly growing epidemic.

If you’re not familiar with any of these terms, I’ll give you a brief rundown.  Doctor shopping usually means going to new doctors to score a prescription for pain killers while already having another doctor, somewhere else, also prescribing you pain killers.

Doctor shopping can also mean, you go through several doctors until you find one that prescribes narcotics, all willy-nilly for the slightest of aches and pains.  You’ve hit the mother load if you end up finding several willy-nilly types.

If your doctor shopping is successful, you now have to pharmacy shop.

Using more than one  pharmacy to fill the several different prescriptions you scored,  keeps you from getting busted.  I mean damn…If you hand the pharmacist 3 prescriptions from 3 different doctors, and they’re all for pain killers…yeah, you just wasted your day.

Drug seeking typically means you’ve either run out of pain killers, or you’re damn close to running out, and you have to get something RIGHT NOW before you go into withdrawals. You’ll do what you’ve gotta do to get them.  Emergency rooms are known to be full of drug seekers with bullshit complaints of pain and/or injuries, hoping to get a dose, usually an injection, of pain killer.  It’s a drug seeker’s lucky day if they get a dose while at the ER, then sent home with a prescription to fill, too!

Still with me?

As I was saying, I was reading the article about all of this today.  Then, I decided to browse through the comments people submitted regarding this issue.  It annoyed the shit out of me.

The majority of the comments were about how there needs to be a mandatory networking system of all doctors, and all pharmacies.  This required networking is said to keep people from having more than he legally should.

Are you shittin’ me?!?  All this does is keep pharmacies from being involved!

There were also a few comments saying “we” need to help these addicts!  And, there needs to be more rehab centers.  Getting these addicted people some help, will stop the doctor shopping, and yadda yadda.  Okay, maybe so…

But, how did all of these addicts get their START?  Seriously, I want to know.  How the hell did this happen???

If you’re a recovering pain pill addict, or currently battling the disease of addiction, I want to hear about the very beginnings.

If you’ve never experienced pain pill addiction…. well, I’d like to hear your theories as to how you THINK pain pill addiction happens.

Part 2 of this blog is coming up….  it’s possible that I just might blow your mind.







5 thoughts on “Part 1. (participate so i can finish Part 2)”

  1. My mother was addicted to prescription pain pills. She doctor shopped. She pharmacy shopped. She’d got to the ER. The only thing she didn’t do was make her own, she drank instead.

    How did it start? She had pain. Pain from a botched hip replacement, pain from spinal stenosis, pain from fibromyalgia. But instead of the PT the doctors recommended, she chose the easier, lazy method: She asked the doctors for prescriptions for painkillers and they gave them to her.

    I can’t blame the doctors exactly because my mom could be, well, rather loud. Eventually she was banned from at least one doctor’s office and a pharmacy. She didn’t quit until a doctor put her on methadone.

    Methadone isn’t just for heroin addicts; it’s a fairly effective painkiller. It didn’t provide the high, but it helped make her more comfortable.

    Whose fault was her addiction? Well, to be honest, I think it was hers. She didn’t want to work to feel better; she wanted to escape from feeling bad – not just physically, but emotionally. If she had put all the effort it took for her to get the painkillers via the methods above and used it to do the recommended PT and some counseling, she probably wouldn’t have needed the painkillers.

    Histrionic personally disorder, borderline personally disorder, fear of facing herself all contributed.

  2. I don’t doctor shop, and I dont go to multiple pharmacys, but I am absolutely an addict. Have been sence a pickup tried to make me part of the scenery many years ago while riding the bike. Although I receive my meds legitimately I am still treated like a low-life. Like last week when I went to the ER with severe abdominal pain. The looks, the whispers, the comments, (“Sir we do not dispense narcotics at the ER for pain any longer”)… I told them I had plenty of my own and just needed them to figure out what was wrong with me and keep their opinions to themselves.
    This is a constant problem for me and it really annoys me to be treated like a criminal simply because I’m in a pain management program…
    Then Saturday it struck me as an old Chevy pulls up across from me at the gas pumps. The guy goes in to prepay (another of my pet peeves) and the chick is in the car with the stereo blasting singing to a toddler. “Shake rattle rattle shake rattle rattle, Boone Co. mating call.” These may not be the exact right lyrics as I didn’t take time to learn them. If I hadn’t left when I did I would’ve probably throttled the dude when he came back out. These are the people making my life difficult.
    Answers? I don’t have any… but then again, you didn’t ask for answers. Hopefully this did give a touch of insight to some who would have not normally considered the perspective of the “righteous addict” who is just trying to maintain their quality of life.

  3. Thanks to unavoidable surgeries that have created terrible pain for me (I sense a theme with Janeson’s note – it’s the medical establishment creating the addicts, at least in some cases) I am being told by multiple doctors to go see a pain management specialist. They don’t know how to fix what they broke. I keep refusing to go see that particular doctor. But the pain is bad, a 7 on a 10 scale nearly all of the time. Who can think when they hurt like that? In a year, I’ve lost the life I had.

    I am doing the PT, the hard work, even though no one can assure me it will actually help. But I am also being told I will never be back to the way I was before I had my gallbladder removed last year (yes, it was a “simple” and “common” surgery that did me in). I’ve been told to go on and get the disability handicapped plates. I’m only 51, I’m a little young yet to be giving up on life. I can function better with a strong pain killer – I can get some sleep, for one thing. But I am not taking them, I am toughing it out. I’m using a TENS unit instead, which is a frustration because of the wires and hassle. You also can’t use it when you sleep.

    So I’m not an addict but I’ve stayed in a Motel Six. I’ve got alcoholism in the family genes; I know what addiction is.

    You want to know what causes addicts? Why people turn to drugs? Pain. Physical pain and mental pain. Physical pain caused by who knows what, maybe just bad luck, maybe poor choices. And then there’s the mental pain caused by the hard stresses of living in a society that doesn’t give a damn. The mental suffering caused by years of low self-esteem and mean people and abuse of every kind. Yelling and drunk parents, bad bosses, spiteful, evil people who want to shoot first and question later. A media that makes you scared to leave your house because a terrorist might be lurking around the corner. That stuff screws with people’s heads.

    Not everybody has a strong will to do the hard work, to go through counseling, therapy, whatever. And all of that takes money, time, and health care coverage and guess what, the US sucks at that last one. We’re 38th in the world in health care coverage.

    That’s what causes addicts. It’s the pain, baby, all the way, and a system set up to force anyone who isn’t strong enough to deal to go straight to the bottom.

  4. I am an ER Nurse. I am a pusher. The doctor my boss. Life hurts. Nobody wants to feel pain. We must stop injecting intravenously, very strong narcotics for mild to moderate pain. Do I know what an addict looks like? Absolutely. He or she looks just like you or me after a legally prescribed narcotic, taken as directed. One gets addicted, another doesn’t. Like most addictions.

  5. I’m a recovering addict. I am the Executive Director at a local women’s substance abuse treatment program, Bethany Hall. How does addiction start? Pain, mental or physical. Sometimes self-medicating a mental illness. Almost always there is a family history of addiction (includes alcohol). An average of 98% of the women we work with at Bethany Hall have a history of physical, mental, and/or sexual abuse – most often as children. Myself, I was an unhappy child. I’m not sure why, I just was. During the time my mother was ill for an extended period of time (I was 15, she died when I was 16), I took my first drink with my boyfriend. (Yep, most women report their first drug/alcohol use is with a boy). I immediately felt “better” – felt like I fit in, felt more comfortable, felt my worries slip away (for the moment, of course). What started with teenage experimentation grew into a raging addiction, and by the age of 30, I went into a treatment center. By the grace of a higher power, I have not had to choose using drugs/alcohol since then. That was 22 years, 7 months ago.

    I’m one of the lucky ones. Many die. Worse, possibly, are the ones who end up vegetative or living in the horrors of active addiction.

    Addicts are still ostercized by society. Add being a mother or pregnant to that mix, and there is little tolerance of the disease. It’s not a “warm and fuzzy” cause. And, as long as that continues, we will continue to manifest the vicious cycle from generation to generation.

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