Detox and Cost of Drug Addiction: Questions from Loved Ones of Addicts

A Question About Detox and Cost of Drug Addiction

I have a question about detox and about the cost of drug addiction. I am a loved one of someone who has an addiction to drugs. I always support her and never questioned her behaviors, career choices or lifestyle in fear of her mood swings and of her abandoning me. 

I learned through 12 step programs that deal with codependency and emotional addiction issues that I, too, was a victim to the ill effects of drug abuse. Unfortunately, the girl who I am in love with, who had the drug addiction, has moved on and I am coping with picking up the pieces.

I have been reading several of the experiences on this site and I just want to know the answers to two questions that she never answered for me.

(1) What is detox like and what is the process?

(2) Also, how much money can an addict go through in a month or a day with a cocaine addiction and an oxycodone addiction?

Looking back, I am ashamed of myself for not being of better help for her. Drug addiction is a terrible disease and it affects not only the user, but the loved ones around them. I am currently attending an Al-Anon group to cope. Thank you for this website.


Answer

I want to thank you for writing in. I first want to apologize for what you are going through – it sounds very painful. I hope you are finding Alanon meetings helpful. They can be a great tool for helping the loved ones of addicts who are suffering the consequences of addiction.

I want to stress that you have nothing to be ashamed of. I can tell just by what you are saying in this short paragraph that you did your best, you loved this person, and I don’t believe there is anything else you could have done.

How To Help Addicts

An addict can only get drug addiction treatment and stop using drugs when they are ready and are willing to accept help to stop taking drugs. You could have tried a million different things to help her, but unless she wanted it and was ready to accept it, it wouldn’t have made much of a difference.

I know that I had to come to a point where I was miserable enough to want to change my life and to want to stop using drugs. Yes, part of this came from my family and the people around me basically forcing me into rehab. However, once I got there, I realized how grateful I was to be there and how much I really needed to be there.

Until an addict comes to this realization, it will be near impossible to stop them from self-destructing. I imagine you are learning a lot about this from Al-Anon meetings.

Detox

As far as drug addiction recovery and detox go, all facilities are different. 

When I entered rehab, I spent 5 or 6 days in the detox area before I was moved to another room with other patients who were finished detoxing. During my detox program, I was pretty miserable and felt physically sick as well as just completely broken emotionally and spiritually.

A detox plan varies from patient to patient, but, in general, patients are often given other types of medications to make sure that they don’t have seizures or any other kind of complications that come along with withdrawing from drugs or alcohol.

For example, I was coming off of cocaine and Klonopin, and I was given Phenobarbital to make sure there were no complications coming off of the Klonopin. People who are coming off of opiates (heroin, oxycodone, etc.) are generally given suboxone (some places use other drugs, but the idea is the same with all of them) to make the withdrawal symptoms less severe.

When I finally felt well enough to get up and move around, I was expected to begin attending groups, lectures and meetings and actively participate in my recovery. Everyone has different experiences, though, and all I can tell you is what it was like for me.

Cost of Drug Addiction

As far as cost of drug addiction, this is a tough question to answer. There’s no set formula when it comes to addiction and dealing with addicts. Everyone goes through very similar situations, but how they end up getting there and the details of their journey are all very different.

I had been clean and sober for about 9 months before I relapsed and entered rehab last year. I was only using drugs for about 4 or 5 days, and spent at least $1500. That’s not necessarily an average of what I would have been spending when I was actively using because at some point I would have run out of money ...probably pretty quickly!

Cocaine and oxycodone are both very expensive drugs, and someone with a cocaine addiction and an oxycodone addiction could go through a whole lot of money fairly quickly. I’m sorry I can’t give you a more exact answer, but I hope I have been somewhat helpful!

I want to thank you again for writing. I hope you find some comfort in alanon meetings and from this website.

The consequences of loved one addiction behavior can be very painful. I hope you find peace and support from meeting with others and realize that you are definitely not alone in your struggle.

Take care and feel free to write in again any time you want!


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