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Divorce Support This forum is for discussing the emotional aspects of divorce: stress, anger, betrayal of trust and more.

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Old 06-21-2010, 10:41 AM
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Default Drug Abuse...help?

I realize this is kind of off topic, but I need some advice.

My neighbour is considering leaving her husband... but it is not because of a bad marriage, it is because she has a secret that is tearing her apart.

She has been secretly using/abusing percocets for over two years.
In this time her personality has changed, she is always tired, irritable, short tempered. She just lays around the house, wont clean, or cook for her family. Her husband and her are NEVER intimate.

She has come to me and dropped this bombshell on me over the weekend. She wants to quit, but it too ashamed to tell her doctor (or anyone else for that matter). She feels that if she can't get off the pills, she wants to leave her husband to save herself the shame and embarassment.

I have convinced her to try and quit cold turkey. Her husband is away at work for the next three days. We have covered it up by telling everyone she has the flu, because she is starting to withdrawl.

I am trying to help her (she is in our guest room), and I am caring for her 3 kids.

She is just starting to get sick, and I have googled for hours and can't find any definative information.

Has anyone out there dealt with something like this? How sick is she going to get and how long it will last?

Does anyone know of a drug abuse forum like this one?
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Old 06-21-2010, 01:36 PM
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I know you are just trying to help her, but I think she needs to go see her doctor immediately to get the proper healthcare especially when someone is abusing narcotic prescriptions.
You have the right intentions but I don't think you will be able to help her, maybe just short term. There are side effects and she will go thru withdraw and her best help would be from a professional
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Old 06-21-2010, 01:51 PM
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Call the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) for guidance.
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Old 06-21-2010, 11:50 PM
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Tug and DTTE are absolutely correct - this is NOT something you should be trying to handle on your own without medical care. There are all kinds of side effects both physically and mentally that you aren't trained to deal with and you aren't doing her any favours in helping her hide this - your intentions are great however this is just not the way to help her.

She can't just quit cold turkey and assume everything will be ok, it won't. She needs medical care and ongoing therapy to get through this part and get a handle on the addiction. She doesn't have to see her own family doctor, you can take her into any ER or clinic for help, it's actually quite dangerous to try to stop taking percocet on your own without medical help because it contains both opiates and narcotics (ie: seizures, depression, violence, suicide etc).

There are doctors who can help her with this, there are ways to avoid this from happening. The best thing you could do for her is ignore her requests to keep her secret and get her some medical treatment ASAP.
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Old 06-22-2010, 12:07 AM
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At the very least she should be consulting her family physician and advising the situation. Her medical info is privileged - even from her immediate family if requested.
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Old 06-22-2010, 07:19 AM
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The medical informaton is privileged, but if a custody assessment is done by the OCL or privately, then she will be asked to sign releases for the family doctor. If she doesn't the court will wonder why.

Get her over to CAMH, where it will be more difficult to root out her involvement.

That said, you are enabling her by assisting in keeping this secret.
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