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  • Help me avoid the spiralling path to addiction

    The impact of ICE/Methamphetamine use can be significant and problematic. Join this forum to find support and conversations on changing ICE use and recovery.
    applehelper
    Junior Member
    Posts: 5
    Joined: Sat May 14, 2022 11:27 am

    Help me avoid the spiralling path to addiction

    Sat May 14, 2022 1:09 pm

    Hey everyone,

    I'm not sure if I'm the target audience here or not, but I've recently started doing ice regularly (along with other illicit drugs I've been playing with for a while).

    I'm using it mostly in the context of "party and play", so during sex. I tried it once last year and it didnt go well, but after a really bad breakup, a stressful month at work, and general boredom and anxiety, I have now been using fairly regularly during many, many hookups over the past few weeks. As you can imagine, my mental and physical health is becoming frayed, as are my finances!

    I've come here because I am scared of becoming addicted. I am thinking about taking it all the time lately and I'm having so much trouble stopping myself giving in to the urge even as I don't want to.
    I wonder if you guys had any tips to manage those urges.

    I guess my point here is I am someone who tried it out once due to curiosity and now find myself indulging more than I ever intended. I have no one to turn to now that it's becoming this thing I'm always fantasising about. (I have a psychologist I work with on a number of things including my use of other illicit drugs but im too scared and guilty to mention this all to her even though I know they wouldn'tactually judge me...).

    I'm actually writing this as I wallow in bad feelings the day after a session of medium use (not as heavy as I've done in the past). I just really need some help and advice because I have no idea what to do!!

    Sorry if any of this is triggering!
    0 x
    Lhiver
    Community Builder
    Posts: 552
    Joined: Tue May 04, 2021 9:59 am

    Re: Help me avoid the spiralling path to addiction

    Sat May 14, 2022 4:35 pm

    heya @applehelper I want to start off by saying thank you for opening up and being so honest with us about your substance use. It shows a lot of strength to be so upfront, so good on you.

    I can hear your concern about your substance use increasing and becoming more problematic over time. The fact that you've clocked it early on and are making a change now is really good, you'll be able to get supports and techniques in place before things get any more out of hand :) !

    It can be difficult to manage urges early on, but there are techniques, such as urge surfing. You can read about it here. It's a good way to begin to recognise urges and start letting them pass without acting on them. The more you do it. The easier it becomes!

    It might take you a little bit of time to open up with your psych, but as you've said, they aren't there to judge you. They're there to help you. You might find that after a little time in the forums you'll feel a bit more comfortable opening up with them, but do it at your own pace and when you feel comfortable.

    I'm going to tag our peer workers @PnorkelPW and @ScorpionPW for some other advice. Also member @initae89 has had a similar journey, and may have some insight. You can also check out their journey here here and finally here

    Let me know if you have any questions or need some extra support etc. just tag me using the @ symbol!
    1 x
    applehelper
    Junior Member
    Posts: 5
    Joined: Sat May 14, 2022 11:27 am

    Re: Help me avoid the spiralling path to addiction

    Sun May 15, 2022 4:20 pm

    Thanks for the reply and support @Lhiver :)

    It's early days but I think I can do this. I made the decision to cut off the people who I think are enabling this.

    The urge surfing was interesting... I have had a few urges today, so I tried it out. I have been practising mindfulness lately thanks to my psychologist's advice, so this was a useful activity. Being able to "ride the wave" was good but I also realised it helped me feel less guilty about the urges. I guess it was a reminder that feeling this way is normal and part of the journey :)

    I've checked out a lot of the other stories here and have signed up for some specific support groups I've seen mentioned on the forum/website. Its early days for me, but I think I can do this :)
    1 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 456
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Help me avoid the spiralling path to addiction

    Mon May 16, 2022 10:09 pm

    Hi @applehelper the target audience here is anyone who's found their way to the forums for whatever reason has brought them here...........so, welcome to the forums.

    Great decision to cut off the people who are enabling you. That's not an easy decision to make and it's often what keeps people stuck where they are. Great work in getting in touch with the support services too! Sounds like you're really getting focused on the changes you want to make. The urges are a natural part of making change. Can I ask why you feel guilty about the urges??

    Thanks for sharing with us...........when I read your share it highlighted to me just how sneaky drugs are and how we can begin to rely on them to function so easily. One of the reasons we take drugs is because they make us feel good. The trouble is that when things aren't going so well or we hit a rough patch we start to look for things that will make us feel good. A quick fix. Anything so we don't have to feel the negative stuff that's going on at the time. The trouble is that drugs help us do that and we never really work through the process of feeling the crappy feelings that are just a part of life. We might turn to the drug with the intention of just using it for a day or a weekend but those feelings keep popping up so we look for the drug again to help. Before we know it we're using more often than we thought and sitting on the edge of addiction.

    Sex can also fall into the addiction category and it's something I've had my battles with. The dangers of mixing drugs and sex can pose an extra large threat and the enjoyment can disappear from both. I've had to work hard on separating them at times and making sure I'm having sex for the right reasons and not as an escape from reality. I've been through periods where sex has resulted in the same guilt, shame, remorse and emptiness that drugs, alcohol and gambling have had on my wellbeing. I resonate the feeling of being physically and mentally frayed you shared about.

    It's awesome that you're acknowledging this quickly and trying to do something about your drug use before it gets too out of control. One of the signs of addiction is thinking about it all the time. I've understood this more over the years and when I think back to my early years it makes sense. If I wasn't using, I was thinking about it. I wasn't drinking or using every day but I was planning it. What got me through the week at school was thinking about drinking on the weekend and as I got older and started using drugs it was the same. I was always thinking about the next time. That's addiction starting to sneak it's way in.

    When I started seeing a psychologist in my early attempts at recovery I was never completely honest. I told her what I thought she wanted to hear and I never gave her the full picture of what things were like for me. I didn't want her thinking I was out of control...........or crazy! I used to wonder why seeing her didn't feel like it was achieving much. It was because she wasn't able to help me properly. She couldn't help me she didn't have the facts so the strategies she gave me weren't effective. In later years I've discovered that honesty is how I get the help I need.............and the only person judging me is me. I'm my own worst critic. I hope you can find your way to get honest so you can get the help you want.

    Things that worked for me were and still are.............
    - mindfulness
    - exercise
    - establishing routines
    - getting back into things I'd stopped doing that I enjoyed such as golf and bushwalking
    - getting honest with friends and family and telling them when I was struggling so they could help
    - a great GP
    - a psychologist
    - AA and NA
    - meditation
    - colouring books
    - getting up and leaving the house so I wasn't sitting around in my own head
    - deleting phone numbers from my phone
    - and my biggest saviour............journalling. I journal every night before bed and have done for 6 and a half years. It helps settle my head, work out what's keeping it busy and put the day to rest. It does lots more too but I can't recommend it enough.

    I hope some of this has helped and if I can help in any way, answer any more questions or anything else then please feel free to tag me and I'll respond. I'm on the forums twice per week and am more than happy to share
    0 x
    Lhiver
    Community Builder
    Posts: 552
    Joined: Tue May 04, 2021 9:59 am

    Re: Help me avoid the spiralling path to addiction

    Sat May 21, 2022 12:15 pm

    how are you going this week @applehelper ? :D
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    applehelper
    Junior Member
    Posts: 5
    Joined: Sat May 14, 2022 11:27 am

    Re: Help me avoid the spiralling path to addiction

    Sat May 21, 2022 1:17 pm

    Thanks @PnorkelPW for that very long and inspiring post. A lot of what you've said really resonated and I'll definitely explore journalling and look into those support resources.

    My therapist already has me writing down my thoughts and feelingd to take ownership of them and help keep me from spiralling into anxiety and I think perhaps a longer form writing task might go down a treat.

    @Lhiver this week has been a journey. It really makes me realise that kicking addiction is harder than I anticipated. I was good for most of the week, but gave into an urge to use last night and this morning (with the same person). I'm trying not to beat myself up about it, as I realise just going cold Turkey will be hard. Luckily, I have some counselling sessions specifically addressing my increasing use of illicit drugs and I know I have some support.

    I've also decided I will email my therapist and let her know what's been going on. I think sending an email may be less face-threatening for me and actually motivate me to let her know what I'm facing so we can work on it together.

    Thanks everyone, I'm doing my best :)
    0 x
    Lhiver
    Community Builder
    Posts: 552
    Joined: Tue May 04, 2021 9:59 am

    Re: Help me avoid the spiralling path to addiction

    Sat May 21, 2022 4:48 pm

    @applehelper recovery is a journey with a lot of ups and downs! Getting through most of the week is great! Being nice to yourself today and moving forward is really important, recpgnising that it will be difficult and beating yourself up is a really good approach.

    It's great you have that support from your counsellor. If letting them know what's going on via email first makes it easier for you, then take that approach. AT this stage, doing what you can to alleviate stress is so important.

    Look after yourself!
    0 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 456
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Help me avoid the spiralling path to addiction

    Mon May 23, 2022 9:24 pm

    Step by step @applehelper.......that's how you'll get there and you've got some great insight into what's happening for you. I think the email is a brilliant way to get your thoughts down and can give your therapist some insight into what's happening for you. Whatever works...........just keep doing more of that
    0 x
    Lhiver
    Community Builder
    Posts: 552
    Joined: Tue May 04, 2021 9:59 am

    Re: Help me avoid the spiralling path to addiction

    Tue May 24, 2022 8:37 am

    how was the weekend @applehelper ?
    0 x

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