Recovery Speakers Forums Blog topics and discussions Are You REALLY Sober if You Use Medication-Assisted Treatment in AA?

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    • #46774
      Editor
      Participant

      What are your thoughts on MAT? Would you sponsor someone on MAT?

    • #46776
      Tim F
      Participant

      This is a difficult subject for me as I am unsure of my personal stance on MAT. I personally abused several of the drugs that are used in MAT. When I got sober, I did it cold turkey without any substances, detox, or treatment. Only AA, and as a result I have an amazing life free of all substances. At the same time I have personally witnessed many people achieve long term sobriety by using MAT. Specifically a Suboxone taper, Vivitrol and the Naloxone implant. It goes to show that “there is more than one way to get sober”. Everyone has their own path to take and who am I to judge?

    • #46827
      Susan s
      Participant

      I am very familiar with MAT (suboxone). From my experience, doctors prescribe this for the hard core multi-substance abuse addicts. The goal is to ween them off of this with a combination of working with a sponsor, counseling, and hard work on the part of the addict. It is the addicts choice whether they want to get clean. Making friends and working the program will be a life long adventure. That will be the addicts support system. The addict will learn how to combat cravings. Bottom line…..they have to want to be clean and willing to work hard.

      I have seen addicts not ever stopping soboxone, but they still try the experiment and use in between mandatory blood tests. Even though suboxone is an opiate blocker, There are some opiates like zanax that will still get them high, in which they obtain from other sources. They know how many days to stop using it before their mandatory blood test.

      I feel that the MD should ween them off of it and give them the recovery tools to help them get through it.

    • #46829
      Pat
      Participant

      Addiction as a spiritual malady, I know not everyone understands addiction this way but for those who do or for those who have the sense that addiction is the symptom of something deeper, please read on. If we agree, then we can acknowledge a spiritual solution is needed to recover and we would also agree recovery arrives through a spiritual awakening. Then miraculously, we accept our role in the spiritual disorder. This awareness happens through healing of the spiritual split within the sufferer usually as the result of trauma. Most, if not all, who become addicted or alcoholic, suffer from deep unresolved trauma or great disappointment in their earlier lives. These events cause a divide within between the mind (ego) and the heart (spirit)…yes, I believe we are of the Spirit, as is all of the natural world. So, the problem with MAT is both the good news and the bad news. MAT blocks not only the cravings but also the deep unresolved emotional pain in place before the addiction process was active and increased once the addiction was calling the shots…and the bad news, is MAT because it blocks the psychic pain necessary to motivate the sufferer to go within themselves to face and be rid of the pain and heal the wounds with the help of someone who has walked the path before. This surrender of the will and a turning toward Something which can not be controlled, only surrendered to…is a move from willfulness to willingness….from dependent upon an external source, to independent and free from the fear-based ego to a return to the spirit within. This can be accomplished in many ways other then the Twelve Steps. Freedom from the “bondage of self” is like no other, a return to the real self, the true self is possible only with a sincere willingness to know and trust that which lies within the heart. Easy no and yet the freedom to feel one’s own humanity, the ups and the downs, to face life with the help of others, a return to what one was meant to be from the beginning, it’s an experience everyone is entitled to and can have with just a little willingness and the recognition there are no free rides, there will be pain for all the times we avoided our humanity. Twenty seven years this past November 17th. Peace.

      • #47345
        Marty C.
        Participant

        Hi Pat,

        I’m curious from someone who has benefited from both AA and MAT, is this your writing or something you learned from someone?

        “MAT is both the good news and the bad news. MAT blocks not only the cravings but also the deep unresolved emotional pain in place before the addiction process was active and increased once the addiction was calling the shots…and the bad news, is MAT because it blocks the psychic pain necessary to motivate the sufferer to go within themselves to face and be rid of the pain and heal the wounds with the help of someone who has walked the path before.”

        It’s an interesting take..I think a lot of folks use MAT as a process to also address the wounds…getting therapy for deep seated trauma, anxiety, etc – sometimes takes a while…changing ones habits can take a long time too…having cravings reduced – or dopamine effects eliminated altogether during this period can be helpful.

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