positivethoughts

What is happening to me

6 posts in this topic

I'm 7 months clean, and in the last few months I was actually doing really well. I was looking forward to things, making plans, enjoying myself. I was starting to feel emotions - and from reading other people's posts, it sounds like that's really what we all want. In the last week or so things took a turn for the worse. I just feel nothing. Life feels pointless. I am having terrible thoughts that I can't seem to avoid. All I keep thinking is will it ever get better, is this going to be my battle for the rest of my life? I look at everyone else walking down the street, young and old, they seem so carefree. I envy them for not being locked in a horrible self-struggle. Why can't I be like them? Will I ever feel like that again? If I can't live a life that I can feel, what's the point

 

It's also worth noting that in the past month a few major-ish events have happened. My girlfriend of 2 years accepted a great job in Utah (I am in Chicago) and moved there in the end of May. Her family lives there as well, and they were going through some rough times, she wanted to be with them. We are still together. I don't ever plan on leaving her, she's the best thing that ever happened to me - and I know she feels the same. But that doesnt mean I don't feel abandoned and alone. Before she left, I was not working as I am a full time MBA student. After she left I took a full-time job downtown. I was hoping that it would keep my mind busy, keep my mind off the fact that she was not there every time I went home. So now I have 4 classes per week at night, and work 5 days a week. I'm sure that this has something to do with my horrible feelings.

 

I have to change something. I have to move to Utah, or quit my job and focus on school, or something. I also want to propose to my girlfriend, but am afraid that I would be doing it to try and change something for myself. I am also terrified that if I proposed while feeling this terrible ... I wouldnt feel it. 

 

I don't know what I am looking for, or really why I posted this. Here is the only place I feel like anyone knows what I am talking about. Please tell me it gets better.

 

 

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:( I'm sorry you're feeling this way

 

I'm feeling the exact same way over here at 8 months... you couldn't have described it better. 

 

I know what you mean when you say that you don't want to propose while feeling like this. You want to be happy when you propose and you want to be totally present, and have it be a day you remember. I know it's kind of different, but I feel that way about dating. I would like to try dating, but I feel like I have to be happy first... I can't start a relationship while feeling this way. 

 

While I was on Adderall, I took a job thousands of miles across the country and uprooted my whole life and moved here. I'm living way up north, close to Alaska. Isolated from the world, no family, no friends... I wonder if that has anything to do with why I'm feeling so crappy. But then again, I went home for a visit last month and spent most of my time there depressed in bed. Can't win.

 

I don't know what I want, other than to not feel this way anymore. I don't know what would make me happy, but I'm also feeling like I need a change. Although, I'm stuck where I live for at least another year or two because of financial reasons.

 

Sounds like your life could definitely benefit from a change too. I know I would be burnt out if I were working a full time job and doing school on top of it. That's way too much, especially when you're feeling like garbage. And it sucks that your girlfriend is so far away :(  Does she plan on staying there permanently?? Do you think you would like to move to Utah??

 

Hope things get better for us soon... 

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So to understand why you're feeling as bad as you are now, we must take a step back and consider what all is occurring in the brain of someone recovering from an Adderall addiction. A brain in recovery from an addiction is very fragile and does not respond as well as a normally functioning brain to life's stressors. It's trying to function and perform in suboptimal conditions. To make matters worse, we're all recovering from an addictive substance that directly impacts dopamine functioning, meaning the reward circuitry is going to be temporarily dysfunctional and not adequately provide that "feel good" feeling that should happen as a result from experiencing something that should make you feel good (i.e. receiving and giving affection from/to your girlfriend). From my understanding of the neuroscience regarding addiction recovery, what signals the brain to re-introduce more dopamine receptor sites (which would allow you to experience that "feel good" sensation much more readily) is low serum dopamine. I guarantee your brain is re-introducing more of those dopamine receptor sites in response to not taking Adderall for 7 months, but it takes time.. lots of time.. and this is the part that sucks for us.

 

So what can we do to facilitate this healing process? Well there's nothing we can do to directly effect the dopamine receptor sites, your brain is hard at work correcting this dysfunction without your conscious effort, I assure you. What you CAN do facilitate this process is allow your brain to heal in an optimum environment that fosters healing. Meaning the lower the stress levels, the better the environment/conditions for healing. What you did by taking a full-time job is increasing the demand, thereby the stress, of an already taxed system. I'm not calling you stupid for doing this.. I mean we can't tell life to pause for a year because we need to recover.. but what I am saying is you need to go easy on yourself and admit that the best thing you can do for yourself is reducing your stress levels as much as your life allows. I'm going through graduate school as well and I could NOT imagine taking on a full-time gig on top of what I'm doing already. What you're doing is commendable, but will inevitably result in excessive emotional anguish and hardship. 

 

I've done the long distance relationship thing in the past and I fully empathize and sympathize with what you're going through. What helped me the most was scheduling a nightly Skype time with her, and I highly suggest in doing this if you're not already. I found it must be video, because seeing your girlfriend's gestures and seeing her smile at you will help you more than conversing with her alone. And yes proposing to her out of desperation to make yourself feel better is not a wise thing to do, I agree. If you haven't already, open up to your girlfriend a bit about how you're feeling about your current situation. This doesn't mean pouring your heart out to her and making her feel obligated to make a decision for you whether or not you should quit your job and move to be with her.. but do not shy away from vulnerability. I guarantee she understands what you're going through is tough and is wanting to know how she can be there for you. She's probably already picked up something is off with you, and if you don't open up with what's all going on with you, she will probably (if she's like my girlfriend) begin to wonder if you think she is the problem and will be hurt. 

 

By typing this, I don't want to delegitimize what you're feeling or making it seem like I have it all figured out and I'm doing great. All is not 100% on my end. Some days are not bad, other days are anxiety-riddled days where I just go through the motions and get the hell home as soon as I can. I have to remind myself that this is all part of the recovery process, and fluctuations are to be expected. Please take it easy on yourself and remind yourself that yes, yes you are recovering, no matter how shitty some weeks can be. All we can do is just push forward till our brains reach a level of normal, typical functioning.

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Hey positivethoughts,

 

You've gotten a lot of good advice here, and I just want to echo the fact that quitting is an emotional roller coaster.  There are so many ups and downs, especially in the first year, and you can't predict them all.  

 

Your life circumstances sound rough for anyone, and you're doing this while quitting on top of that.  Be kind to yourself and take good care of yourself.  The body builds dopamine reserves through food, sleep, and exercise, and TIME.  

 

I know the long distance thing is ridiculously hard, especially if you're used to living near someone.  The thing that's helped me most through being away from a partner is to try to focus on myself and my "alone time."  And I have to agree that proposing right now sounds wrong.  You'll know when it's right.

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I apologize for my late response - I cant tell you how much I appreciate everyone's input and support. Its finals week for me this week, I have one more to go tomorrow and then I am done for a month before fall quarter starts up. It has really kept me going to get these responses in the past few days, and I am blown away by the depth of your posts. Truly thank you. 

 

Bluemoon - I can't fathom how difficult it must be to live in a new place AND be recovering from adderall. You must be a very strong person. I absolutely would think that the situation you've described would have something to do with your mood and emotions during the recovery months. It is a new thing for me, since my girlfriend moved away, to feel stranded and alone during a time of discomfort, and I would imagine that you have had similar feelings all along being in an unfamiliar place. Not to say you don't have some level of support from friends in your new city but I think there is always comfort in familiarity of your surroundings. I hope you are able to find contentment in your new home and new job - if you haven't done so already. Regarding relationships, just as this website shows everyday that there are really amazing people out there that care for one another, and can empathize with others, I think you too can find someone that you will find that you enjoy being around and will support you. I know I am very thankful to have had someone with me throughout this process. I am not saying "Hey, you should go get out there!", because I know its not that easy when you are struggling to feel normal emotions. Nonetheless, I hope that you get surprised by meeting somebody new, you never know it could happen at a time you don't expect. And to answer your other questions, my girlfriend and I don't have it fully worked out how long this move would be for her. Originally we thought it would make sense for her to at least go out there and feel out this new position, and then decide on whether or not I would move there after school - or she would move back if she didn't like it. We are kind of caught in the middle right now, which doesn't make things easier. Best of luck going forward, thank you very much for sharing your story - lets both get through this.

 

Duffman - I really really like your approach to this. I need to remind myself that this isn't really "me" so to speak that is causing the discomfort, its a function of my brain recovering from an addiction and the environment that affects it. And like you said, the recovery itself can't be influenced (other than to hinder it with poor health decisions), but the environment can be altered so as not to overwhelm and cause even more stress. At the very least, I think I will re-tweak my schedule for my next term to perhaps only include 2 classes instead of 4, that way I can spread out my workload and have time to recover. I've also thought about approaching my boss and asking for reduced work hours on days that I have class. I'm not sure which I will end up doing, but either way your input has made me start to lay out some options. I will also take your advice on making it a point to see my girlfriend, instead of talking to her over the phone or texting. I definitely have already experienced the fatigue of feeling like I should call and text her consistently/constantly, but like you said, its different when you actually see the person and see their emotions. I actually just got off of a face-time with her, it went for over an hour (a good thing), much longer than our normal phone conversations at night. I try not to bring up my recovery too much in our conversations, especially now that she has moved away, because I don't want her to think that I am not thinking about her and am only thinking about myself - and I don't want to make it seem like I cant handle the recovery on my own and somehow blame her for leaving, which I absolutely do not. But you're right, I do need to open up about it, especially in difficult times. Thank you for putting this all into perspective in this way, you've made me feel like this all is more manageable with the right mindset. Hope your recovery continues swiftly as well. 

 

BeHereNow - Ever since reading your post, I've been repeating your sentence "The body builds dopamine reserves through food, sleep, and exercise, and TIME" in my head over and over again. It is a clear formula to battle the stresses and aid in recovery. Honestly, having lived with my girlfriend for over a year in a studio, I'm not used to having alone/me time as much, and I think I relied almost too much on her to take my mind of things. I need to find strength and also solace in being alone, as you said, during the recovery. I will try hard to work on this, my friend suggested meditation, have you tried this and if so would you recommend it? 

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"You know, what you're doing to your body and mind by taking these high doses of Adderall will eventually come back to haunt you and will make your life hell down the road"

I knew one morning doing aome project at 5 am I was popping another 30 mg pill before the sun came up and guzzling it down with liquid Oxcodine I got from somewhere "I have a real problem I'd say at this point and this will be fucking hell when I stop it all together." I was right but that's what I get should have listened to Nacy Regan when I was a kid.

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