Ambien Is Ruining My Life.
Posted: August 28, 2008, 2:05 AM

've been addicted to Ambien for 6 years now. I'm 23 and I have been known to go through 15 or 20 in one night. I also pop them two or three at a time to take the edge off any anxiety and for fun of course. I can't meet new people without it and I am out of control. Every time i go to the doctor i swear i'm going to tell him the truth and never have a script again but i panic and never go through with it. I've bought it through online pharmacies, stolen it from my Mom's medicine cabinet and even though i've done some terrifying and destructive things on it nobody knows about my problem. (driving, excessive drinking, suicide attemot that nobody found out about) Nobody, including my boyfriend even knows i have a prescription. I am so lost and i am so afraid i've destroyed my brain. No short term memory and i used to be really sharp. I never meant it to be this way, i never did drugs before and i only do now because when i don't have ambien i mix klonopin and alcohol to bide the time between refills.This of course can also be substitued with any benzos or opiates, cocaine etc... But Ambien is still what i crave always and i'm not right without it. I don't know anyone else that's like me. At least junkies and alcoholics have comrades. WHO is dependant on AMBIEN???!!! I'm not even a real person anymore. I just want to know if anyone eats these pills like PEZ too so i can get a grasp on this overwhelming problem. Thanks.
Posted: August 29, 2008, 8:35 AM

Posts: 172
Joined: July 15, 2008

Hi there. I, too, have been addicted to Ambien. It is a terrible drug that should be banned, in my opinion. I started using Ambien in 1999 when I started working shift work. At first it was fine. I only took them when I worked graveyard. Then in 2001, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and put on some pretty heavy narcotics, which led to a major addiction. I come to find that, between my doses of pain pills, that I could use the Ambien to abide my time. I am now working hard to overcome my addictions. I have to. I've decided it's either life or death and if I keep taking Ambien, I'm going to die or cause someone else to die. Ambien is a hypnotic and people do things on this medicine that they normally wouldn't. I've wrecked my car three times in the past year while taking Ambien, not to mention the close calls I've had. This last time was my wake up call. I have decided to quit and I really feel that I will be successful because I feel different for some reason. I can't explain it. My doctor started me on imipramine (a tricyclic antidepressent) about a month ago and I am honestly feeling better than I have in a long time. I'm not having any pain and, for the first time in many, many years, I am able to turn my light out at night and have a peaceful, full night's sleep. I can't tell you how wonderful that feels. I also decided to give my problems to the Lord and that has changed my whole line of thinking. I wish I could tell you what the magic answer is, but everyone is different. I know your scared, but you have to come clean with your doctor. If they're any caring doctor, they will do everything in their power to help you. I have found that any addiction is there to cover up an underlying problem. You have to figure out what that problem is and start to deal with it. Otherwise you will be battling addictions for a long time. Like I said, Ambien is a nasty, nasty drug and I think it should be banned. There's reports all over the news about people sleep driving or doing other things that they have no memory of. It's dangerous. I know what you're feeling, but please get some help. Don't ruin 10 years of your life like I did. Take control over this now before something bad happens and you end up in jail, the hospital, and, God forbid, the morgue. I'm available if you would like to talk. Take care.


This post has been edited by chellebeans on August 29, 2008, 8:42 AM
Posted: August 30, 2008, 5:27 PM

Thank you Michelle. That's my Mom's name so your words were extra comforting. I am still not ready to tell everyone i know that i'm an addict but i know my doctor is the first step. I have an appointment in a month. I was wondering if you could tell me if you feel like your short term memory and general concentration have bounced back since your recovery. I am so hopeful that this fog i'm in is all related to the drug even when i'm not on it because i'm always in a limbo wating for more pills. I'm not even sure i have insomnia anymore so its not even about sleep. I'd rather not sleep for a few weeks and be well before i start my career, family, life etc... Thank you for your encouragement. I'll keep posting here for support however distant it may be because this is the first ad ONLY time I've told the truth about this.
Posted: September 5, 2008, 2:54 PM

Posts: 172
Joined: July 15, 2008

I'm glad you feel some comfort. Keeping all this to yourself is horrible. You feel like you must be crazy because you can't imagine anyone else feeling the way you do. That's how I felt. I come from a very kind, normal family and I have always been a strong person, so for this to happen to me made me feel so ashamed. Just know this: it's not your fault. You did not go out and seek this disease. It is what it is. Some people's brain is just wired differently. You've taken the first step in recognizing and admitting that you have a problem. Now, you just have to fix it (sounds easy, huh?) As far as your questions, my memory has started to return to a somewhat normal state. Some of it is scary, though, when I start to realize what the Ambien made me do. My gosh, I could have killed someone!!!! My sleep has also improved. I think a lot of that had to do with the Imipramine, which is an antidepressent, that I take before bed. If you decide to go the antidepressent route, ask for a referral to a psychiatrist. I've never had success on them before because they were being prescribed by my family doctor who doesn't know a lot about depression. A psychiatrist can prescribe much more than the recommended dosage, which is what finally worked for me. It was scary at first taking that much, but it seems to be working so I'm not going to mess with it. Stay strong and if you like, I can create an email account so we can chat directly. The only email I really use now is my work one, and I really don't want this kind of talk going on here (never know who is watching).
Posted: September 18, 2008, 4:07 AM

I've created a Gmail if you wish to e-mail me about this issue. Thank you again for your input.
Posted: September 22, 2008, 9:44 AM

Posts: 172
Joined: July 15, 2008

I have sent you an email
Posted: January 15, 2009, 12:48 PM

Posts: 6
Joined: January 15, 2009

Hey, you are not a freak and you are certainly not alone. I guess I am a garbage head because I will honestly take anything that will alter my mood. ambien was my drug of choice for several months and I too would take 10 or 15 a day. This drug never put me to sleep, just made me feel stoned and I would also do some very strange things while taking it. It has a strong amnesic quality about it so that is why you are in such a fog. It did terrible things to my memory, and i finally got tired of it and switched to something that really made me go to sleep.
Posted: February 19, 2009, 6:09 PM

Posts: 829
Joined: January 26, 2008

I am so glad to see people posting about ambien! I agree, it needs to be taken off the market, in my humble opinion. I got my 2nd DUI while on Ambien...nothing else but 2 ambien that I took before bed. Next thing I knew, I was in a hospital bed, crashed my car, totalled someone else's car, and ended up in the psych unit and rehab. That was in September 2006. I ended up even doing ten days in jail for the 2nd DUI.

Ambien is hypnotic and some folks (like me) can't metabolize it properly and they go into an amnesia state. It is scary stuff.

I am over on the alcohol boards mostly but just wanted to stop in and give me .02 cents.

In spirit,

The image in a mirror doesn't always reflect the condition of a soul - LN
Posted: March 30, 2009, 10:30 PM

You're not crazy and not a freak.I was on 20mgs a night for 3 or 4 years but I found it very helpful in social pressure situations and high stress days at work.I too have gone through 30 in 3 days.I've been clean now for 1 month.I crave it like you do and am staying in recovery to keep myself clean.
Posted: May 29, 2009, 11:30 PM

Posts: 172
Joined: July 15, 2008

IMO, Ambien should be taken off the market. I got arrested for stealing a friend's pills while being on Ambien. I drove to her house and took them and don't even remember it. That was in December and my case goes to court in October. I've done some research on it and it's pretty scary. People are driving all over the place and have no clue what they're doing. I think we should find a way to petition the FDA to ban it.
Posted: June 2, 2009, 10:40 AM

I totally agree about the market ban. Ambien was my last drug of choice and it almost killed me. At the end I was taking up to 70mg, and since it's a short acting
drug, I was in withdrawl when I was using. Totally messed up using a drug that makes you comatose. But I wanted to just fade away from the pain I was feeling and ambien was just the answer. Really crazy. It was pure hell going thru withdrawl, I was jittery, anxious, sick, my muscles were all cramped up. I lost 20 lbs quickly and no sleep for a long time.
Well today marks 5 yrs clean. I live in fear of relapse, so I cling closely to my sobriety.
I wish you well. This board was helpful to me when I first started. Today, I have a great sponsor, AA and my family to support me, but it's a daily thing. I still get cravings and want to fade away, but to returning to that hell keeps me sober.
Posted: June 4, 2009, 7:05 PM

Posts: 172
Joined: July 15, 2008

I was more addicted to pain pills than the Ambien, but I was still addicted to it. It was a way to escape and not care about anything. It was scary waking up, though, when you realized the things you did while taking it.

I had a major breakthrough yesterday. I haven't taken any since December and I found a sandwich bag full of Ambien. I through away the whole bag. Didn't even want them. That felt so powerful.
Posted: June 8, 2009, 9:53 PM

Posts: 278
Joined: March 7, 2005

Good for you!!! Big step. I wish the best for you. Life is so beautiful to turn away, we have such little time here. Enjoy everyday!
Kim j
Posted: February 5, 2013, 4:23 PM

Its great youre out here talking about it and getting (hopefully got by now) help but I dont understand the people saying ban it. Nobody is forcing you to take it... Personally, if I didn't have it I would go weeks on end with little to no sleep making it impossible to function. Have I done some weird stuff on it? Sure. But I'd rather have that then the insomnia. If you dont, then dont take it but it doesn't mean it should be banned. Just my thoughts
Posted: June 16, 2013, 10:28 PM

I have also been addicted to ambien for ages. Chronic insomnia is cured with it so it is the best medicine in my opinion. Unfortunately, an ex and I used them to snort for the dreamlike effects and euphoria that results. Once you do this, seems there is no turning back. It becomes recreational...

I did pop something like 10 a day years ago and that led to accidents. Now maybe a bad day I take 5. But I'm taking maybe 2 a day on average. Still snorting them... They are so much fun to take I'm attempting to switch to Lunesta since it has no buzz. That really seems to be the way to get off ambien. I feel for your addiction... I wouldn't tell the doctor he'll probably stop giving it to you - maybe ask to try Lunesta out and try to avoid that dreamlike euphoria that sucks away our lives...
Posted: July 7, 2013, 2:49 AM

I too have had an ambien problem for about 11 yrs. had depression and anxiety and was going through a rough time so the dr prescribed it for me and ever since it has ruled my life. I get my pills . use them all up in a few days then count down the days until I can get more. I have found ways to get a 30 day script taken it to a pharmacy and then put it on auto fill and everytime it runs out of refills the pharmacy calls the drs office for me and gets more in the mean time I tell the dr I want a 90 day supply to mail out because its cheaper. he always gives it to me and refills the autos. I recently was getting ready to go on vacation and was afraid I would run out while gone. of course in my head the 30 day supply I picked up about a week before I left would be enough o yea that always works out. when it was running out I paniced asked the dr for a 90 day supply so I could have it mailed out. I took it to one pharmacy and they declined it saying I had it filled somewhere else usally too when you take 90 day scripts to a regular pharmacy they will only fill 30 at a time. of course I told them I had no ins so it couldn't be ran through ins but they caught it anyway so I took it to the next pharmacy they filled it and for the 90 days. when I got home. my auto fill was ready I picked it up. and I got a call from the first pharmacy that had turned me down before I left that said they had my ambien script ready . im thinking how could this be I asked for it back when they refused and got it filled at the other place. but they filled it and I obliged by picking it up. I also had doubled filled a script to klonopin before this and was caught and got a registered letter from my doctor saying it was brought to his attention what happened. damned one pharmacy turned me in. lol it said that from now on he would only call in 30 at a time once a month and it would have to be at the same pharmacy every time. I thought well ill just do without I still have my ambien. well I tried to refill it at the auto fill and the dr turned it down now realizing I had a 90 day one out there. and his office did some checking and found I had it filled aone pharmacy and at the pharmacy that filled it whose prescription I had taken and them filling it was as big as surprise for me as it was to anyone and they found I had filled 90 days of them in may. so too many prescriptions too soon overlapping each other. so now I am scared to death that I have finally ruined my life and will end up in jail or something. I did not doctor shop. the same doctor wrote the scripts when I asked for them every time for 11 years. his nurse called and said he was done writing any scripts for me for controlled substances. some I never even took. I apologied profusely and even wrote the dr a note explaining my desperastion , problems in my life that the drugs took away etc. the nurse said he wasn't mad at me when I asked and she said I wasn't the first one to do this and wouldn't be the last. I asked her if I was going to jail and she said no but the dr didn't want the dea knocking on his door. whih I understand. she said he would keep me as a patient but would not discuss this over the phone it would have to be during an appointment. which he has put in a new computer system and is not even scheduling appoints til august. there is always a long wait to get in to see him so with no one being able to even schedule anything until august I can only imagine how backed up he will be. they said they put me on a waiting list. I am determined to never do this again, but the craving for them scares the crap out of me. I just want to live a normal life again. and im afraid I have ruined it. I never doctor shopped, altered scripts or stole prescription pads to obtain these meds. the doctor wrote everyone himself. so I need an opinion. am I in deep trouble with the law? I even had myself believing I was doing nothing wrong because my doctor wrote the scrips. am I in trouble? is the doctor in trouble? I cant be in trouble I have a 27 yr old disabled child I have to be here at all times to take care of . someone please help me. I am going crazy and scared. thankyou tracey
Posted: December 11, 2013, 4:42 AM

I wanted to reply to Kim who thinks its that easy if you just do not take the ambien. I encourage you to read much more on ambien and how people have ruined their life with it. This hypnotic needs to be gone from everybody once and for all. I could tell you how I have destroyed my life with it and I am still taking it. I did do 6 months in jail and I hurt my family over and over again. My family did not know what to do so they became codependent. I have no memory of what I did when I got arrested in my own home but my family will never forget or forgive me. My husband of 20 years has filed for a divorce . I would be in a drug rehab right this very minute if I did not have a long list of things I need to do to save my nursing license and deal with-all of the things you have to do when you are getting a divorce. I still have a restraining order so I can not go near my home and my family. I would just like to write 1 letter to my daughter my husband and my dad to tell them how sorry I am and how much I need them now so I feel supported when I go into the residential program but that is not allowed. I thought 20 years being married I would have been able been told by him and have that discussion that comes with that. I had not taken any ambien while I was in jail and did not plan on it either but I can not sleep even with using the ambien. I would say now it does not work or even come close to what effect it had on me before. I have only a couple of times taken over the prescribed amount of 10 mg. Yes I was so ready for get help when I got out of jail but I have lost everything or should I say everybody. When my friends found out what happened either their husband said they did not want me around or it was to depressing to be around me. I know if I could have that 1 conversation or letter to write to my family they would know I would not choose the drugs over them and together we could get through this. I can not change what I let ambien do to me but we call can do something about making them take ambien off the market. I may only be taking ambien now every once in awhile but I wonder if I refilled my RX of ambien for that 1 last time.
Posted: April 2, 2014, 6:47 AM

I have fortunately never put my husband or myself in danger by trying to drive or even leave our home while high on ambien or anything. I only take it at bedtime. However, since I never had a prescription (the ambien was originally given to me by friends to bring me down after nights of cocaine usage). I work nights so I can stay up all night and sleep though the day. I am now up to 100 mgs ambien/night and not one medical doctor or psychologist who I have approached will help me come up with a tapering plan and have even refused to medically treat me. My husband is at his wits end financially with my problem and we can't afford a rehab center, so I came up with my own tapering plan with my husband and am now down to 70 1/2 mg per night, but my nemisis remains cocaine. I just love to do it (as does my husband) and as I taper down my dosage of ambien, I have come to realize that I have to choose between one or the other, because they cancel out one another. Has anyone experienced a cocaine vs. ambien dual and how did you overcome it? What do you do when you have a spouse who wants you to quit one drug, but not another?
Posted: February 23, 2015, 6:58 AM

Posts: 1
Joined: April 2, 2014

Anyone here ever found themselves addicted to both Ambien AND cocaine? I'm looking for someone to talk to who has shared the same need for each drug on a daily basis and can help me understand it and help me get clean. I'm still dealing with this dual addiction after 5 years.

**please don't post personal contact information. thank you.***

- the moderators

This post has been edited by moderator on February 23, 2015, 8:48 AM
Posted: April 18, 2015, 8:41 PM

I started taking Ambien because I work shift work and noticed that my body was slowly dying when getting 2 or 3 hrs of sleep a night. My Doctor wrote me a script and said to ONLY TAKE THEM when I work the hardest shift for me to sleep.. He said they are NOT ADDICTIVE... BULL-CRAP!
Now, 11 yrs later, I am Stealing them and conning them from my 72 year old Father who has Rhumatoid Arthritis and bouts with Peripheral Neuropathy. When he finally gives me some I leave feeling like a scumbag, as I just begged him and when he says "NO MORE.. EVER!".. I reminded him who bathes him and who wipes his assistant for him and cleans him when he needs it.. I am CRYING as I write this, as I know what a piece of shot it makes me sound like, but I have guilted him into everything I ever wanted because I am his youngest son and never had to earn anything I wanted.. I would just go to Dad.. if he said NO... I'd go to Mom.. if she said NO, then I would blackmail, lie, cheat, & even steal something expensive and blame one of my other siblings or their friends! BUT I DONT BELIEVE I WOULD TRULY EVER STOP WASHING AND CARING FOR MY DAD IF HE REALLY STOPPED... BUT I HATE THAT I AM THIS PIECE OF s*** ADDICT...I HAVE TO HAVE 3 or 4 to relax me... with 4 to 6 Norco and Doze Off... I wake about 2 or 3 hours later and take 3 more Norco & 3 more Ambien.
I have been told I was caught cooking, at convenience stores, not to mention DRIVING, visiting people, & walking the neighborhood and I don't remember a damn second!

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