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 Post subject: Back from an unintended hiatus
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2016 10:17 am 
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Joined: Thu May 02, 2013 8:59 pm
Posts: 22
Hello everyone.

I started TSM about 4 years ago and fell off the wagon twice up until the present. Once intentionally a few years ago and then again about 7 months ago unintentionally.

I have posted an abbreviated version of my drinking back-story in old posts. In short, I was a daily heavy drinker (20-30 units of vodka) per day (nightly). My wife finally put her foot down after numerous black-out events and I got treatment at a local hospital. The treatment I got at the hospital was the typical western model of alcohol dependence treatment (abstinence or nothing). I eventually found the TSM method after googling and got a script for Naltrexone from an MD at the hospital who told me to take it everyday and abstain from drinking. Suffice to say, I stopped going to the hospital and started TSM in 2012.

At this point I don't even remember if I had a honeymoon period when I started. I stopped experiencing black-outs however and was drinking a bit less than I did pre-TSM. Eventually my drinking went back up to pre-TSM levels (1/2 to 3/4 of a 750ml bottle of vodka per day). I took nal religiously for well over a year but my levels never went down. Sometime towards the end of 2013 I stopped taking nal as I felt it was not helping. I can not say whether I felt a difference with drinking when I stopped taking nal initially. If I did feel any euphoria it was for a very short time after having my first drink. My levels continued to stay the same after my first nal stint.

In 2014 I was ready to try TSM again. I went to my PCP who reluctantly gave my nal. I did it again religiously for 2 years. I do not believe I had a honeymoon period as I continued to drink about 1/2 to 3/4 of a 750 ml bottle of vodka nightly. I never blacked out or got drunk except on 1-2 occasions where I was out at a party or bar in these 2 years. What concerned me is that my levels always stayed the same. Earlier this year I called my PCP to get a refill for nal as I was down to a few pills. He was on vacation and I could not get a refill from him. I ran out of pills, never followed up for a refill and went back to drinking without nal.

From then on my drinking levels stayed the same but the effects of drinking got worse. It seems that I would drink every night just to get rid of the hangover effects from the previous night of drinking as opposed to trying to get the euphoria I used to get from alcohol 15 years ago. To put it succinctly, the bottle stopped working but I continued drinking. The hangovers became a living hell. I would spend mornings dry heaving while experiencing heart palpitations. I would experience a feeling of pure dread until I could get my hands on a drink. The depression was so bad that I would not wish it on my worst enemy. To quote a Mind you I am experience this all while trying to get my beautiful three year old daughter off to school. I would get to school and all the parents would be smiling and laughing while I was feeling like pure death. I again became tired of this life where everyday was miserable and I would chase hour or two relief at night by numbing myself with vodka.

Sorry to bore everyone with this long story but I need some help because I am at a crossroads. I went back to my PCP about two weeks ago and he was happy to give me a new script for Naltrexone and trazadone (for sleep). I just don't know if the nal will work for me as it seems to have not in the past. As I wrote above I have taken it for two consecutive years on two occasions and I do not feel it reduced my drinking levels. I am however ready to give it a go again. To that end I am going to try to follow some new "rules" that I have picked up from reading these boards over the last couple of days. I started up with 50mg of nal last week. I am going to be modifying a few things going forward.

1. No hard liquor (only beer and wine). I feel like hard liquor may "overload" my system and not allow the nal to work properly;

2. Up my dosage to 75mg and then 100mg as a last resort. I have seen on these boards that some people who did not respond to 50 mg responded to 100 (cheeto included?);

3. I have incorporated 4 AF days per week for the last two weeks and will try to do so going forward. I will also be building in exercise on these AF days. I must say the feeling of waking up without a hangover is just amazing;

I would love if I could get some feedback from others on my situation because if it doesn't work this time then I will have to figure something else out. I picked a lot of these up from a recent thread of cheeto's and generic's and I hope to god they work. If anyone else has any tips please share with me. I am starting the 75mg today so wish me luck.

_________________
Heavy daily drinker for 20 years pre TSM.
Started TSM 4/1/14.


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 Post subject: Re: Back from an unintended hiatus
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2016 11:06 am 
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Joined: Sun Dec 06, 2015 11:28 pm
Posts: 1646
Welcome back, GC!

Sounds like you've got a good plan there and I think bumping up the Nal is a good strategy for you. It sounds like you were getting some benefit from TSM, but indeed, liquor seems to drag things out for more than a few.

Are you taking any other meds?

Looking forward to hearing from you!


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 Post subject: Re: Back from an unintended hiatus
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2016 11:47 am 
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Joined: Thu May 02, 2013 8:59 pm
Posts: 22
Hi Joe, thanks for writing. I am taking trazadone for sleep and allopurinol for some gout issues but that's it. I am hoping this new "plan" yields some progress. I'm sure just drinking wine or beer will slow me down. While I like beer it feels me up fast and I am not a wine guy.

_________________
Heavy daily drinker for 20 years pre TSM.
Started TSM 4/1/14.


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 Post subject: Re: Back from an unintended hiatus
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2016 12:04 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 06, 2015 11:28 pm
Posts: 1646
Well, check in when you get the slightest notion, good, bad or indifferent. Hopefully someone will jump in and have some input that's a bit more on point.

Do you have a log or diary? There's one you can download here:

http://optionssavelives.freeforums.net/ ... ollTo=4284

Have you tried the mindful drinking approach at all?


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 Post subject: Re: Back from an unintended hiatus
PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2016 12:35 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 16, 2014 12:40 pm
Posts: 510
Hi Gc1979, I totally can relate to the days of going through hangover hell as even with Nal I have hangovers or what we call Nalovers. I'm not sure how the Nal is effecting me but after the hour and drinking I actually seem to get drunk faster than I did without Nal, weird? I usually quit drinking early cause Nal+Alcohol makes me so tired I end up falling asleep on the couch or going to bed early and end up sleeping in till like 11AM. The tiredness may come from me taking Cipralex too.
Guess you have read that I started TSM Oct 14 2014 so coming up on 2 years but went without Nal when my script never arrived before me heading to Mexico for 3 months and drinking without it. I would think that, that set me back but if I had continued on I may have had better results. I did upp my dose to 100 mg and had a few days of less drinking but the last 2 days I was back up to 1 1/2 bottles of wine. Weird though how I always stop at 1 1/2 and really never drink more where in the old days I could drink more and actually wake up with little or no hangover, guess that is a sign of getting old too.
All I can say is hang in there as that is what I have to do cause I really don't know anything else that is going to help me.
Keep in touch and lets get to the Cured List soon!!!
Nal On!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Back from an unintended hiatus
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 9:27 am 
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Joined: Thu May 02, 2013 8:59 pm
Posts: 22
Joe, I will try the mindful drinking approach. I just started reading about it. I am also going to read a book that was mentioned on this site a few time..."The Naked Mind".

Cheeto!!! Your recent thread inspired me to take this new approach with upping my dose and I am so glad to hear from you.

I started yesterday with the 75mg. I had 10/11 units total (10/11 beers). I had these beers over the course of 6 hours which for me is pretty good since I used to be able to polish off almost a whole bottle of vodka (750ml) in just a few hours. Only the first beer was palatable. The rest tasted bad and I choked down the last one. Maybe this is due to the fact that I haven't drank beer in a long time. Can't say I experienced any euphoria from the first one even though I was craving it. I did not have any pleasurable feelings while drinking other than the fact that the beers didn't taste good. I did have a good time during the drinking session as I was hanging out with my two favorite cousins at a local restaurant. We had a good time despite the fact that I wasn't hammering back vodka/sodas. I also poured out some vodka that I had leftover at the end of the evening which shocked my wife.

I am gonna try again today with the same 75 mg dosage and have some wine. I am going to remain optimistic and stick with these new rules.

Cheeto how did you last night if you did drink? Still bottle and a half? Were you originally a hard liquor drinker?

_________________
Heavy daily drinker for 20 years pre TSM.
Started TSM 4/1/14.


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 Post subject: Re: Back from an unintended hiatus
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:13 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 16, 2014 12:40 pm
Posts: 510
Hi Gc1979, I do drink vodka soda's once in a while or a beer or two on a hot day but I am mainly a Wino. I hate the added calories and how full I get with Beer but may have to switch as again last night I drank 1 1/2 bottles of wine, ughh. I did also take 100 mg of Nal crushed it up and waited 1 1/2 hours before my first drink, nasty tasting!
Well I will keep with the 100 mg for awhile and see how that goes but will need to order more Nal soon as I am going through it faster now....
Nal On!


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 Post subject: Re: Back from an unintended hiatus
PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 8:38 am 
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Joined: Sun Dec 06, 2015 11:28 pm
Posts: 1646
Cheeto, do you drink red or white? Maybe switch to the other? I've read where some who get Nalovers on red don't on white.


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 Post subject: Re: Back from an unintended hiatus
PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 11:49 am 
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Joined: Thu Oct 16, 2014 12:40 pm
Posts: 510
I love red but I stick with white for that reason.


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 Post subject: Re: Back from an unintended hiatus
PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2016 3:44 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2015 7:15 pm
Posts: 529
Location: usa
welcome back and good luck!

_________________
Pre-TSM 30-50 drinks per week (US drinks, not units!)
started 4/16/15
months 1-6: avg 17/ 1 AF/wk
months 7-12: avg 13/2 AF/wk
months 13-18: avg 11/3 AF/wk


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