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HIV Life >> Gay Men

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chadlee
Newbie

Reged: 03/26/08
Posts: 2
Loc: Colorado
Getting past crystal meth use
      #238019 - 03/26/08 11:57 AM

Hey there-I have been positive for a little over 4 years and most of that time I have been very addicted to crystal meth. I was using 24/7 for probably 3 years and about a year ago I tried to quit cold turkey with no help at all. I have only slipped up and used a couple times.
My partner and I are having problems recently stemming from my ever growing cravings-and am trying to get into a support group. I was wondering if any other guys have similar thhings going on in their lives?

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Bear60
Legend

Reged: 12/21/05
Posts: 1390
Re: Getting past crystal meth use new
      #238021 - 03/26/08 05:03 PM

I dont have the same problems. I just wanted to say I hope you succeed in your efforts to kick the habit.
Talking about "stuff" is good and thats what you can do here.

--------------------
6 ft tall poz bear in Philadelphia

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August69
All Star

Reged: 03/22/08
Posts: 79
Re: Getting past crystal meth use new
      #238047 - 03/27/08 12:52 PM

My partner was hooked on Crystal Meth a few years ago. (We have been together for 16 years) but to be honest his drug use and lack of wanting to quit caused us to break up in 2003. We still saw each other for lunch or breakfast almost every day but I had to move out for close to a year and a half. Then finally he started to see what the drug use was doing to his life, his friends were withdrawing, close to losing his job, almost lost me..then we ended up moving to another city because I received a promotion and transfer and he wanted to come along. It was time for him to quit. the change in scenery and the support I gave him helped him to kick his habit. he says he still has STRONG cravings but he had to completely break from the scene. Now we live back in Vancouver, B.C. (actually New Westminster) and although he knows where to get the drugs he tends to stay clear. even crossing the street so he does not have to go by the area in New Westmnster where the drug dealers lurk.

It takes a lot of courage, determination, and support but it is possible.

As it turns out he became poz while under the influence of Meth just before we moved to Edmonton back in 2004. He still does not need to take meds as his numbes are quite good. (he finally told me his numbers yesterday) I became poz last June from a friend of ours. My numbers did not recover and I am now on meds.

I will always give him support no matter what happens.

Good luck with your Meth addiction. It is hard to kick but you can make it.

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chadlee
Newbie

Reged: 03/26/08
Posts: 2
Loc: Colorado
Re: Getting past crystal meth use new
      #238119 - 03/29/08 06:40 PM

Thanks for the support!! I appreciate it very much.

Thats awaesome you have never needed meds-I just started a year ago because numbers were bad since diagnosis 4 years ago and this weed for the first time I am undetectable and 854 CD4

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Hall
Newbie

Reged: 01/03/08
Posts: 2
Re: Getting past crystal meth use new
      #238220 - 04/02/08 07:32 PM

I was addicted to meth for about 3 years with it getting worse and worse and deeper and deeper month after month. I did decide to quit cold turkey and to do so I had to totally remove myself from the environment I was in while using. Quitting cold turkey is very hard. I am sure it is harder if the temptations are still there from when you were using. Why do it alone? Get help and support! Life is much better off that crap SO much better. So get help allow others to support you. hope this helps.

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soaringfeenix
Newbie

Reged: 04/02/08
Posts: 3
Loc: California
Re: Getting past crystal meth use new
      #238221 - 04/02/08 08:43 PM

i wanted to share a little of my road to recovery. i used meth heavily for about 6 years and yup it destroyed my friendships, relationships, career and so on. Not to mention the toll my health took. I went into a rehab because i needed to get away and learn tools to cope, i'm not saying you need to do this just that this is what worked for me. Also, what i do now is attend a 12-step anonymous group. I have built friendships with people who aren't using and get support on the days i get cravings to use. hope this helps.

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MarkSKing
Newbie

Reged: 04/04/08
Posts: 2
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Re: Getting past crystal meth use new
      #238258 - 04/04/08 03:23 PM

Cravings for Meth do indeed hang on, and combating addiction of any kind can be emotionally complicated. I urge you to seek peer support or therapy however you can. You don't have to go through this alone. www.crystalmeth.org is a good resource, and there are even "meetings" of meth users in recovery available online.

Problems in a relationship as you describe are only one of a number of "triggers" that can re-ignite your addictive behavior. Reach out for help, as you did with this posting. You can do it!

--------------------
Mark
Author of "A Place Like This"
www.MarkSKing.com

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pozartistsd
Expert

Reged: 01/04/08
Posts: 105
Loc: San Diego, CA
Re: Getting past crystal meth use new
      #238496 - 04/14/08 11:15 PM

hey i was much in the same boat as you and yes the cravings are strong but i went (like you, coldturkey) almost an entire year clean then fell off the wagon (see my post "Fell off Wagon" in living with HIV, if you want). I have to say that this "slip" was a good thing as it showed me just how lousy that stuff makes you feel coming down. I mean i knew already of course but because i went so long without crystal and had a reference to how good a person is supposed to feel. When i slipped, then came down, that awful feeling was even amplified and i realized the high wasn't that good anymore too! I've read you really have to go at least a full 12 months to let your body bounce back and to let your brain chemistry repair itself. be patient with yourself! Using is definitely wrong, especially for us. I know this now, my slip taught me this for sure. of course i thought i was not like the other users as i just put a little in my coffee once each day so i somehow thought i had control.... right!

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sharedStrength
Newbie

Reged: 04/12/07
Posts: 5
Re: Getting past crystal meth use new
      #238553 - 04/17/08 08:51 AM

I used meth every day all day long for the better part of 5 years. The first time I seriously quit during that period, I only lasted 7 months. Back then meth was not that common and the only way I could get off it was to create an altercation with my dealer so he wouldn't speak to me anymore. I didn't know anyone else who sold it, as it wasn't all over the place the way it seems to be today. I craved it every day over those 7 months, worse and worse till I finally managed to make a connection online (which was not so common where I live at that time). Then it was back to 1.5 more years of hell after that.

Somehow I managed to avoid getting HIV the whole time (probably in part because I'm pretty much a top and had a lot of trouble getting it up while high! So that made it impossible to do some of the things that would have put me at risk. After years of meth-free life, I got HIV from my partner -- it was basically an accident as he had fully disclosed and we were usually really careful.

I think when it comes to meth, we use until we really truly just don't want to use anymore. Right up to the end, my brain still saw some benefit (however tiny) to getting high even though I knew how the negative aspects totally outweighed the positive feeling.

I started trying to taper off my use one January and then by April I finally stopped. I would get some and try and make it last as long as possible, then hold out as long as possible before calling again. Sometimes that would be 2 days and sometimes it would be 2 weeks. I tried to go clean for as long as possible, and then eventually on April 30 I used up the last of what I had and I never did it again. My 5th anniversary of stopping is coming up in a couple weeks.

In my experience, every day it literally gets just a little bit easier. After 3 months it is a ton easier. After 6 months, it is that much more so. After 9 months, you will be able to look back and whenever you think about the positive thrill of a meth high, you will immediately remember all of the bad things that come piling up after it when you've been using for 30 minutes or more: nonstop sweating, disordered thoughts, obsessive-compulsive actions, heart palpitations, etc etc etc. The distance from your use gives you a lot more clarity about it.

I read something once about cravings that stuck with me, it said to remember that a craving generally lasts about 9 seconds. If you know that you can ride them out. If you feel like you are constantly craving, see it as a bunch of really short episodes and know that the longer you are clean, the further spaced out they will be.

When I stopped using, I caught up on all the lost sleep, I put on some weight, I started reading and writing and became a bit of a homebody for quite a while.

I think you need to figure out what works for you, and do that. For some people that is AA/NA/etc. For others, it's some other kind of fellowship or support group or even a spiritual calling of some type; they say meditation is really helpful. For me I just needed to chill out, heal myself and regenerate. I do not abstain from all substances though I know that I must completely stay away from meth. Other substance are not triggering for me and they are also something I don't need or use very much. However, I did cut out *everything* for 3 months and found that to be helpful and hugely eyeopening.

Some my main advice is figure out what kind of support would help you, and get involved in it. Ask yourself about every decision you make -- does it put you closer to health or to despair. Make the healthy choices. Most of all, know that it really does get easier the longer you stay away.

You can do it! Know that.

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sharedStrength
Newbie

Reged: 04/12/07
Posts: 5
Re: Getting past crystal meth use new
      #238554 - 04/17/08 08:56 AM

Also, I read this little book on addiction and sobriety that I found hugely helpful. I can't remember the name of it but I have a PDF of it somewhere at home. I'll look for the information at home and then post it here.

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MissouriMammal
Member

Reged: 06/15/05
Posts: 19
Loc: SW Missouri
Re: Getting past crystal meth use new
      #239219 - 05/12/08 03:02 PM

I had troubles with cocaine use many years ago. I found it impossible to break the habit because my entire circle of friends were using as well. It got to the point to where I was very ill from the drugs destroying my immune system and almost died, I knew I had to do something drastic, so I moved. I've never been back and next month I will celebrate 16 years of being clean. My health has never been better, I am much happier and a more productive person off drugs. I know if I can do it, anyone can, so Good Luck!!

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