Admitting Adderall Addiction
Seven months ago, I was telling a freind at work about my difficult school semester, how I was having a hard time staying on top of everything. She told me she took Adderall, a pill that helped her with focus and energy. She offered me a couple and the next day, I took one. I felt on top of the world. I was so focused, so much more patient and cheerful. The next day, I took the other and felt even more productive and was amazed and what an amazing mood I was in and how much I was getting done. I looked into prescriptions, but I couldn't afford them so I started taking my boyfriend's adderall. He'd been on it for over a year and I'd never given it any thought before, but after experiencing it for myself, would sneak a 10 mg little pill once or twice a week. I considered it to be a "just for when I'm really tired or have a really long day" thing. And then I started taking two a day, then three, then two every day, then three. Then it started getting harder for me to feel that rush of energy, and if I did take enough to get that energy, it wore off quickly. I found people I could buy it from so I'd have my own, but after a few months, instead of feeling productive and having a good day, I'd blow off work and school and just sit in my garage after taking a 30 mg of adderall, smoke cigarettes, and play on the computer. I knew I wasn't making good choices, and when the high went away, I'd feel really guilty and say after the next batch was over, I was done. And after it was all gone, I'd go three or four days being miserable, and just buy more and it would start all over again. And it went from 30 a day to 60 a day to 90 a day, until it got to the point where my life consisted of popping adderall, sitting in my garage drinking now and smoking, sometimes starting as early as noon, and I would stay up for two or three days, playing on the internet, popping adderall, smoking cigarettes. Before adderall, i had a lot of friends, went out with them, saw them every day, ran around with them...at that point, I hadn't returned a phone call in months and just wanted to be left alone. The task of driving to the store for more cigarettes was something I considered "productive." The craving for beer and cigarettes was so strong; I stopped doing anything other than smoking, taking adderall, and drinking beer. I always told myself it was fine, I was fine, tomorrow I'd do something productive. After staying up for two or three days, I'd eventually crash, wake up a day later, and start the process all over again. Those feelings of guilt during sober moments were gone; there were no sober moments. If I woke up at two in the afternoon, I'd take adderall, go to my garage, smoke, drink, and play on the computer. At eight am the next morning, I was still drinking beer and smoking. I started to go through a thirty pack a day. Told myself I'd get it under control on Monday. My boyfriend and I broke up, my friends no longer tried to call me, I had gone from a 24 year old woman with goals, a social life, loving boyfriend, and good relationships, to a person who did nothing other than smoke, drink, and take pills. And as time went on, the dosages increased. Twenty mg every four hours, a thirty here and there. For two or three days. When I'd wake up, I'd feel so awful, just nearly unable to even walk and then once I popped an Adderall, I felt great again. And then yesterday, right in the middle of a regular day of popping adderall and smoking, I got a text message from one of my really good friends, who I had been blowing off for months. "I can't stand watching you fall. I don't know what's going on but you need to talk to someone. I miss you. We all miss you." I sat there, staring at the message, as a huge sob escaped my chest and I cried. And then there was a flood of text messages and voicemails (since I never answered the phone) of sixteen friends and family members, all saying they were there to support me through whatever was going on, and to please reach out. My adderall use had always been a huge secret; I was ashamed of it. And I sobbed as I read the messages and listened to the voice mails. I just sobbed. The original friend who had text messaged me first (I found out she had called and emailed everyone and encouraged them to show me support) was the only person I felt I could talk to. I called her, and the second she answered I just started sobbing. I told her everything. I told her how admitting it made it real and how I hadn't known happiness in months and that I was so scared I was never going to be happy again. I was so afraid the person I used to be was lost forever and I regretted so badly ever trying that first adderall. I never mant for this to happen and a year ago, had a seen myself the way I was at this point, I would have been furious with myself. I was so ashamed, felt like SUCH a loser and still do. She set me up with a counselor she personally knows, who I will be seeing at nine today. Yesterday, I flushed every adderall I had down the toilet and deleted all contacts of people who I knew I could buy it from. I want me back; I want to be the same happy go lucky girl with jokes and humor and silliness. Goals and ambitions. I want to get back into college. I am so afraid I ruined that part of me during this entire hot mess but I have to try. The path continuing this behavior leads to is going to be nothing other than pain and misery, maybe even death. At this point, all I have are two choices: continue and fail, or stop and at least try. It doesn't seem possible to me to ever be happy again. When I'm not taking adderall, I don't have the motivation to even turn on the TV, much less write a blog or call a friend and I know what I'm looking at here and I'm terrified I'm going to fail. But I've made the commitment and as of 6:25 am on this Wednesday, I am starting day one of recovery from adderall.