Opiates Not For The Masses

April 12, 2008 at 4:55 pm 3 comments

I’ve started to make posts that detail my opiate use private. I’m comfortable thinking of myself as a drug abuser, but I’m much less comfortable being seen that way by other people, even when I’m using my anonymous identity. Partly this is because I don’t think any useful discussion can be had – I know that abusing opiates is a dumb thing to do. Then again, I’m not injecting or smoking the stuff. And my choice of opiate is quasi-legal and fairly cheap (I have, however, moved on from over-the-counter codeine).

So what I’m doing is actually remarkably safe and sensible in comparison to, for example, shooting up with heroin. But this is just a rationalisation for what is, quite blatantly, an incredibly poor choice. Anything that I write on the topic is going to be filled with rationalisations and justifications that even I don’t quite believe, and making that a public statement would be embarrassing.

Maybe I’ll make these posts public in the future (not that anyone’s going to care much, I imagine).


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3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Alison  |  April 12, 2008 at 8:38 pm

    I admitted to my GP I have been using OTC Codeine last week I for almost 12 months in yet another last ditch attempt to gain some much needed help. I was taken aback when he actually said he would prescribe Codeine to me as it would be better than taking it from OTC due to the Parcetamol content which I had given thought to but didn’t really care either way.

    I am still not sure if his option was sensible or whether he was just handing me more pills and sending me on my way. In the end he forgot about it and I didn’t ask since I was too damn annoyed to bother.

    I personally would rather not use anything in order to get me to sleep but using it has to be better than stirring at the ceiling for hours on end talking to myself.

  • 2. experimental chimp  |  April 12, 2008 at 9:31 pm

    Alison: It sounds like you have a fairly sensible GP. Codeine, unlike pretty much any other opiate, is self-limiting. Your body can only metabolise so much of it into morphine at once, so although you can get addicted, your usage can’t spiral upwards indefinitely.

    And because it has to go through the liver to be turned into morphine, smoking and injecting don’t give any appreciable effect over swallowing it. Which also limits its abuse potential.

    The paracetemol content of OTC codeine definitely concerned me. When I was using codeine, I always did a cold-water extraction on it (codeine’s much more soluble than paracetemol, so you can dissolve it in warm water, stick it in the fridge for half an hour and pour through a coffee filter).

    Opiates don’t make me sleep (at least not at the doses I’m using), but they do make me feel ridiculously good. I’m impressed with your GP, though. I had a long and bitter argument with my previous doctor about my codeine use. At the time I was using it once every month or two, which was helping a lot with self-harm urges. But this was a terribly damaging thing to do according to my GP. So now I’m not telling any of my doctors about my opiate usage, because as far as I’m concerned, they can’t be trusted not to over-react.

  • 3. Alison  |  April 14, 2008 at 3:09 pm

    When I start thinking about extracting it I am going to get worried!

    That GP I didn’t like, the one I saw today is much better and I realised how much respect I actually had for him.

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Hi, I'm James. I'm a 26 year old guy from England with bipolar disorder (currently well controlled). I also have a circadian rhythm sleep disorder (not so well controlled). This blog has charted my journey from mental illness, through diagnosis and, recently, into recovery. It's not always easy, but then, what is?


Self-righteous note about smoking

As of 12th September 2008 it has been forty five weeks since I quit smoking. So in another seven weeks it'll have been a whole year.

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