Becoming Aware by Peter Marinelli

An interesting event took place recently with someone early in recovery, which was a great reminder for folks who are new on the path of sobriety.
Sober just six months, this young fellow was experiencing high levels of anxiety and mood swings.
He also has a history of addiction to Benzodiazepines (Benzos).
So off he went to a doctor to see if there was anything that could be done to help with this onslaught of anxiety. He informed the doctor of his history with Benzos and that he was early in recovery.
The doctor listened and then prescribed a month supply of Klonopin.
Thank God for God. This young man “had a feeling” he should talk to someone about this prescription that was now in his hand. Should he take these pills as prescribed or get a second opinion?
We immediately took him to another doctor who clearly UNDERSTOOD addiction. This doctor then prescribed something much milder and for short term.
This new recovering person was then instructed to find a sponsor ASAP and start doing some step work and “get God” along with the proper help he is now receiving.
By the way this young person was feeling fine two days later. He met with a sponsor and began step work as well.
We are sure that this one particular doctor was doing his best to treat this person in recovery. We also know that if we are not sure about the remedy prescribed that it’s alright to ask questions and get a second opinion.
In early recovery, folks will experience acute withdrawal, followed by post acute withdrawal. Here is some of what this can look like:
Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS) symptoms
Mood wings
Anxiety
Irritability
Tiredness
Varied energy
Low enthusiasm
Variable concentration
Disturbed sleep
These symptoms can have one feel as if they were riding on a roller coaster that’s never going to end. It’s vital that the recovering person understand that what they are experiencing is typical. Understanding PAWS, and keeping the focus on recovery, along with the proper medical attention if and when needed, will be of great help to the addict and alcoholic.
The great concern here is when the addict /alcoholic have these symptoms hit them like a ton of bricks and they are not immersed in recovery, getting the proper, including the proper medication if needed they can walk right into a relapse.
This was another reminder for recovering folks. That because someone is a medical person, doesn’t mean they understand the make up of a man or women in recovery.
Ask questions, and if it doesn’t feel right try another doctor who knows about the world of alcoholism and chemical addiction.

Blessings,
Chop wood, carry water
Peter Marinelli

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