Recovering opiate addict: In need of advice - page 5

Hello all,I'm so glad I fought this forum. I've replied to several posts but thought it was time I told my story.Shewwww here goes: I have been a nurse since 2006. Worked in ICU & ER for a couple... Read More

  1. Visit  wish_me_luck profile page
    5
    That story was from AA? I hate to say this, but I am going to be honest. I don't think AA works as well as people say it does. I don't sit there every day and work the steps in a notebook like some do nor do I read through the Big Book several times. I work the steps through my actions. I admitted that I was powerless and that I had a problem. I can honestly say that I have not gotten to that point where I had atheistic beliefs. I have always felt God's presence, even in the toughest of times, so turning my will and life over to God was done. I took inventory and continue to do so and admitted my wrongs. I have not made a physical list, but rest assure that I have made amends with those I have hurt. I pray. I keep the anonymity of others in the meetings, but I am open and admit my alcohol abuse. I have moved on from the steps alone and gratitude for my sobriety (which, I thank God for, but I do believe I had a hand in my own sobriety) to wanting to serve others and my community in a capacity that my experience could benefit others.

    I actually went to a meeting a month or two ago (Co-Ed AA) and a guy told me that I wasn't working the steps. I was floored. I am not one that talks--I want my actions to speak louder than my words. I have been sober 8 months thus far.

    I think it goes beyond the steps. Yes, the steps can help, but you truly have to have that desire to stop drinking/using. I am the type that is quite "extreme" in what I do. When I drank, I drank. But, that option is off the table. So, I have begun trying to get my life back in order and to be successful and I am trying to do all that I can--so, now that "extreme" behavior is used for good. I have seen people who have been in AA for years and they relapse and then they go back. Sometimes they relapse again. Therefore, I think it goes beyond the steps and AA. If you have the true desire to be sober, then it can and will happen. But, that desire has to be there and you have to take accountability for your actions. You can't change unless you take accountability and admit you are at fault (this is in reply to Boston's story about the woman getting blamed for what the man did. That man won't change if he always blames others.)

    Definitely hate the "age" thing in everything. I have seen young people "get life" at a young age and I have seen older people who just never got it. I don't believe age in itself gives a person wisdom. Wisdom comes from experience. Some people were dealt a rough hand at a young age and others didn't experience anything rough until they were older.

    I am lucky that I am fairly young and so the it's easier to break the habit. The older you are/longer you drank, the rougher it is.

    I get something out of the Womens AA meetings. I think there's a difference in men and women when it comes to substance abuse/addiction. I also like the Caduceus meetings. No Nurses Groups here. But, GA, you'll like Caduceus, I think. I like the fact I am around other health care people who realize screwing up once could cost us big time.
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  3. Visit  BostonTerrierLoverRN profile page
    2
    While a fully support the twelve steps and AA/NA, it didn't work for me either- I think it has to do with a HCP mental block. It seems to be shared by many. The programs are free, and they've saved many lives. Dr. Bill has my full respect, but,...

    As hard as I tried, I couldn't recieve help and healing from the steps, or that program. I was desperate in my intent to stay clean- but nothing changed inside me. I have theological training, and I am a Doctor of Missionology. I could not do it.

    The help I recieved was from another's advice. It WAS in a book, so I was skeptical! But the transformation was from a sick boy who didn't want to go on- to the man in love with life now. I go into detail in the "Alternatives to 12 Step Programs" thread, just don't feel it's appropriate here for me to downplay how the 12 step program DOES help thousands, and who am I to criticize who haven't,...but know there are other ways if you can't identify with those teachings, and boy do they work...coming from someone who works for a higher power
    Last edit by BostonTerrierLoverRN on Dec 9, '12
    GA_RN2006 and TXRN2 like this.
  4. Visit  JerseyBSN profile page
    2
    I have worked in drug addiction in the past and I can tell you for certain that it is a rare, strong, and courageous person who can overcome their addiction. I don't think most people realize how strong an addiction to drugs are. I've seen people swear they're going to get clean every time they came in for detox yet they returned several times a year plus several times a year to other facilities as well. They checked in when they ran out of money or needed a reason to stay out of jail. Sad but true.

    Anyone who can overcome their addiction and stay in recovery deserves a lot of respect from all.

    I went to Al-Anon for a while due to a family member who was abusing alcohol. I found it to be of no use. As far as AA and NA, I never heard any success stories from the patients that we had. I think clearing all the contacts on the cell phone, picking up and moving away from everyone who could cause you to relapse, getting a job and starting a new life with new people and friends is a far better alternative to meetings.
  5. Visit  Vishwamitr profile page
    0
    Quote from GA_RN2006
    Ty u all for your replies. I've been clean for 2yrs now. I was fired & reported to the board. My recovery has been #1 in my life. I contact the BON last Oct for reinstatement. I could of ask for reinstatement after 6 months of me surrendering my license but I didn't feel I was ready. Again I appreciate all your comments it makes it easier to know I'm not alone.
    Dear GA_RN,
    It is not my place to judge you (or judge anyone else for that matter) but personally I feel that 2 years is a very short period of time to be declared "recovered". I also believe that one is still vulnerable with elapse of such a short period.
    I feel for you but give yourself some more time when you feel even stronger, much more enlightened, and have a better insight because it is not just your life that is at stake but others' too whose lives are entrusted in your shaky hands. Please understand that I am not being condescending or judgmental but some one who calls spade a spade.
  6. Visit  nursel56 profile page
    2
    GA_RN never used the word "recovered". If you are familiar with them, you would know that people in treatment almost never use the word "recovered".

    The state boards of nursing exist to protect the public, not the nurse. I feel confident they are in a better position to evaluate and monitor each person's situation with a lot more accurate information than a complete stranger on an internet message board who says it isn't their place to judge, but does it anyway.
    poppycat and VivaLasViejas like this.
  7. Visit  VivaLasViejas profile page
    2
    I've been sober for 21 years now and STILL don't consider myself "recovered". Started out in AA, but have accomplished the rest of it with help from family and friends because I felt I needed better role models for a successful life after ETOH than I'd found in the group. But you know, this thing never, ever goes away---not the sudden cravings, not the urge to drink when you're stressed out or depressed, not even the taste of alcohol. Over two decades after my last drink, if I think about Jack Daniels whiskey my tongue immediately senses the smooth but fiery bite of the amber fluid; see a beer ad on TV and in my mind I'm sitting on my porch on a hot day chugging down an ice-cold Hamm's.

    Of course, as soon as those thoughts start creeping in, I banish them fast and move on to some other topic. But I find it amazing, and yet disappointing, that I still have them even after all these years. Which is why I will never claim to be "recovered" until I've gone at least ten years without a single thought or craving for booze, especially during a mood episode or period of high stress. And probably not even then.
    poppycat and nursel56 like this.
  8. Visit  GA_RN2006 profile page
    3
    Thanks guys for your input. I misspoke when I used the word "recovered". I'll be the first to admit that once one has struggled with any type of addiction they are never fully recovered or cured for that matter. As far as me only being clean for 2 yrs, it's a start everyone starts somewhere. With that being said just bc I'm not 5-10 yrs clean & sober doesn't mean I shouldn't be given the chance to prove to the BON that I'm now at a better place to care for pts. I was a critical care nurse & a good one at that but I now feel God has other plans. I appreciate all the comments that have been said on this post good & bad. I know I have a lot to prove and honestly I wouldn't want it any other way. I'm currently getting ready to enroll in classes to get certified in Substance Abuse Counseling. I feel blessed to have found this site, it has really helped me a lot. Thanks again to everyone
    poppycat, nursel56, and VivaLasViejas like this.
  9. Visit  VivaLasViejas profile page
    2
    You know, when I started exploring nursing as a career early in my college career, I'd been sober for about 2 years. I remember asking the faculty member who addressed our group if the BON would have a problem with me becoming a nurse because of my history, and what she said was "If it's not a problem for you anymore, it won't be a problem for them."

    I never forgot that. And alcohol has never been an issue in all this time. So yes, I think two years of being clean and sober is long enough to prove that you've got what it takes to return to nursing.
    poppycat and nursel56 like this.
  10. Visit  Beverly913 profile page
    0
    Hi there
    You private messaged me back in November of 2012 and I did not get any notification. I am really sorry. I understand the need to talk to other nurses in recovery. I hope by this time you are attending 12 step meetings on a regular basis. Please email me directly at beverly913@gmail.com.
    Hugs
    Beverly
  11. Visit  amber24c profile page
    2
    Quote from Vishwamitr

    Dear GA_RN,
    It is not my place to judge you (or judge anyone else for that matter) but personally I feel that 2 years is a very short period of time to be declared "recovered". I also believe that one is still vulnerable with elapse of such a short period.
    I feel for you but give yourself some more time when you feel even stronger, much more enlightened, and have a better insight because it is not just your life that is at stake but others' too whose lives are entrusted in your shaky hands. Please understand that I am not being condescending or judgmental but some one who calls spade a spade.
    OMG!!!!!!!! 2 yrs is a huge deal especially when we are taking one day at a time. I agree that we have to start somewhere and the even the first month is a big deal. For those of us that are fairly new to this someone stating two yrs is minor is VERY discouraging! We are all going to need different amounts of time to develop our road to recovery. We made a mistake, its not as though we spent our whole lives making that mistake...... my point is two yrs is a great accomplishment.

    On a side note...... there are a lot of people on here that are not in recovery. Maybe these people are going off of the education or family experiences. For these people I say this .... I delt with addiction growing up via my family. I watched people I loved struggle and was hurt in the process and because of that I developed a certain view of addiction. Then there is the education nursing school gives us. Then secondary to an injury I became an addict to pain medication. Please know that if you do not have an addiction problem you cannot fully comprehend how we feel or what struggles we face.
    I understand this forum is open to all, however if you don't have first hand understanding then why would you attempt to give advice to people seeking advice from nurses with first hand experience.
    poppycat and TXRN2 like this.
  12. Visit  HunnieBadger profile page
    1
    Quote from GA_RN2006
    Hello all,I'm so glad I fought this forum. I've replied to several posts but thought it was time I told my story.Shewwww here goes: I have been a nurse since 2006. Worked in ICU & ER for a couple years from there moved on to my dream job. I work there for about a yr & in the last few months started diverting Percocet. I couldn't believe what I was doing at times it felt like I was having an out of body experience, I was sick, both physically & mentally. Im scared now that I'll never be given a second chance to prove I'm no longer that "sick" person. Recovery has been a long lonely road & at times I've tried giving up but I know now God has other plans for me. I always wanted to be a nurse, I was good at what I did but now bc of my addiction I may never be given another chance. I can look back now & be thankful for the road I have traveled bc it's made me the person I am today, which is a strong, health woman. I just wish there were more ppl out there that understood that addiction is a disease & not everybody that suffers from this illness is not a dead beat, loser that doesn't want & need help. Well this has been my story in a nut shell. I hope I can help others out there that have walked in my worn out shoes.
    You're story is so very similar to mine! I just lost my job d/t diversion of Percocet 2 weeks ago. I reported to the ncbon before my employer did and just starting out on my path in the AP program. My biggest angst is being able to land a job after IOP and being reinstated with all those lovely stips! There is such a lack of understanding and tolerance when it comes to us Nurses, if I were some business person or everyday joe nobody would even think twice to admonish me the way that I think many of us have been.
    TXRN2 likes this.
  13. Visit  GA_RN2006 profile page
    1
    Thank you Hunnie. It feels relieved to know sometimes I'm not the only person that's made mistakes. I too am very apprehensive about looking for work once I've completely my long list of to do's. I wish you all the best
    TXRN2 likes this.


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