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Addicted to Xanax | How Xanax Almost Killed Me

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Being addicted to Xanax is like living in dark room with a slow strobe light.

Wake up. Flash. It’s night time.

Wake up. Flash. It’s the next morning and I’m lying next to a dumpster in the sun.

Wake up. Flash. It’s a week later and everyone is mad.

Wake up. Flash. I’m in the hospital and I don’t know why.

I blacked out constantly on alcohol, but I think Xanax is worse. It’s instant blackout, a total memory eraser. I cannot tell you how many times I searched and searched for the Xanax I’d purchased the day before, only to finally realize I’d eaten it all.

It’s an evil drug, far more evil than alcohol. At least with alcohol you’re forced to drink it. There’s time between sober and blasted.

Xanax is instant. You’re just gone, along with every inhibition you’ve ever had.

It’s a complete freedom. A floating. You’re in the world, but you’re not a part of it.

No wonder being addicted to Xanax is so wonderful and horrible at the same time.

Signs of Xanax Addiction

Back when I was abusing Xanax heavily, I found myself constantly doing things I would never do otherwise.

It really was like alcohol in a pill in terms of how I acted on it. My inhibitions were just gone.

The constant anxiety and fear I’d lived with all my life was gone. I could do anything, but not because I felt like Superman like I did on meth, but rather because the ego was just erased, leaving only the id.

Basically, as soon as a thought popped into my head to do something, I’d do it. That meant a lot of driving when I knew I shouldn’t. That meant a lot of moves made on uninterested girls. That meant a lot of lying, a lot of embarrassing behavior.

I get a LOT of intrusive thoughts. Think about what you’d be like if you acted on every single one.

That’s what Xanax addiction looks like. That’s what pretty much any benzodiazepine addiction looks like.

Just like with alcohol, Xanax addicts stumble around a lot, spend a lot of their time slurring their words and getting confused. They might be an angry addict or a happy addict, just like you’ll see angry drunks and happy drunks.

But the most obvious sign of Xanax addiction is a complete disconnect from the reality of what’s happening around you.

One of the things that makes Xanax abuse so dangerous is how easy it is to hide it. You’ll usually be able to smell alcohol on someone’s breath, but with Xanax there’s nothing to smell. You can hide the act of consuming Xanax itself easily, if not the signs of it.

That’s why you have to pay such close attention to someone if you think they might be abusing Xanax. In low doses it’s easy to hide the symptoms, but even in high doses it can be hard to tell in a full-blown addict who knows how to hide it.

If You’re Addicted to Xanax, Realize That Withdrawal Is Deadly

Heroin withdrawal is a bitch. Xanax withdrawal is a never-ending nightmare.

Most real Xanax addicts are using in huge amounts and have been using for a long time—sometimes for decades.

You can’t use for that long without severe problems coming off. Xanax withdrawal can last a month or more. I know people who have gone to rehab for 30 days and then relapsed because they were still dopesick and couldn’t take it anymore.

It’s so dangerous to come off on your own. I’ve had seizures coming off with nothing but weed to get me through. I’ve got friends who have died during seizures coming off Xanax.

It’s not something to play around with.

The problem is that it seems like something you can play around with because, at first, it seems innocuous.

Most people take a while to get physically addicted to it. It’s not like opiates where you end up addicted fast. It’s more like alcohol in that respect.

When I was using Xanax the most, I was eating so much that, looking back, I’m not sure how I didn’t die.

That seizure I talked about was strange and intense. Thankfully it was the only one. I didn’t know what the hell had happened. It took years to figure it out.

All I wanted was the anxiety to go away. I just wanted to breathe, to stop caring so much about what other people thought, about what I thought, about my shitty, fucked up life, about anything.

But it wasn’t doing that. It was just taking me to a dreamland where the ruin of my life was still there but everything felt unreal.

But I’ll tell you what was unreal—my best friend dying from a seizure.

I knew him. I’d be willing to bet money that seizure was a result of him coming off Xanax.

That could have been me.

Are You Addicted to Xanax? Get Medical Detox

The only drug more dangerous to come off than alcohol is Xanax.

If you or someone you know is trying to get off Xanax, get help. Go to a detox center so they can taper you off safely.

This is one you can’t do yourself.

If you’re addicted to Xanax, be honest with yourself and get the help you need.

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Adam Fout

I'm an addiction / recovery / mental health blogger and a speculative fiction / nonfiction writer. I have a B.A. in English and an M.A. in Professional and Technical Communication. I'm a graduate of the 2020 Odyssey Writing Workshop. I'm a regular contributor to Recovery Today Magazine, and I've been featured on numerous recovery podcasts. I have personal experience with addiction and mental health. I have Substance Use Disorder (SUB), Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Major Depressive Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED), and Binge Eating Disorder (BED), among others. I have been in numerous drug rehabs, detoxes, and mental institutions, so I understand from personal experience how the mental health system works. I have been published in numerous literary magazines, including December, J Journal, and Flash Fiction Online, among others. I LOVE when readers reach out to me! Always feel free to send me an email at awfout at gmail dot com. I can't wait to hear from you!

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