Citation: NURV2600. "To Help Taper Off Suboxone: An Experience with Phenibut (exp113863)". Erowid.org. Dec 20, 2019. erowid.org/exp/113863
Phenibut to Help Taper Off Suboxone
So, as some quick background, I've used just about ever substance under the sun, but am proud to say that I've been sober (except for marijuana) for the past ~1.5 years. Towards the end of my ~13-14 year "drug career", roughly the last 3-4 years were spent horribly addicted to opiates, Opana/oxymorphone and fentanyl to be specific. After a bunch of failed attempts at doing it without MAT (medication-assisted therapy, "just getting addicted to Phizer's heroin" as I saw it), I finally broke down and started on Suboxone, 16mg/day, and within 2 weeks was about to stop using completely, all outpatient.
Over the course of the next year, I would occasionally decide to lower my dose, typically halving it overnight, with little-to-no effect on my life; maybe I'd have trouble sleeping for a night or two here or there, nothing big. However, I was doing this because of something I always suspected, but never knew how bad it really was (and I won't get into too much here, I'll write a separate Suboxone report): they want customers for life, and the smallest dose of 2mg is WAAAYYYY too high to come off of
the smallest dose of 2mg is WAAAYYYY too high to come off of
I ended up landing all the way down to 1mg no problem, but it was after that every FRACTION of a milligram off my dose was a multi-day living hell. I eventually had to cut the 2mg strips into EIGHTHS (0.25mg doses!) and SLOWLY bring myself down to that dose, but at that point, cutting them any smaller was just getting ridiculous. So, I bit the bullet, went to 0mg, and started loading up on ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and Requip for restless legs at night, but my mind was still going crazy; I've NEVER had anxiety or depression at all in my life (quite the opposite, I'm being treated for hypomania because I'm always a bit TOO energetic/chipper!), yet I was getting panic attacks, I didn't know what to do.
It was then that I found Phenibut – a gabapentinoid, very close analog of Baclofen, but uncontrolled and available online?! I remember lots of people in detox being given Baclofen and swearing by it, and my fiancé takes Gabapentin which helped me in the past, but I can't always take hers. For $25 for 180x250mg doses, it sounded like a win, and MY GOD AM I HAPPY I TRIED IT! It has completely changed my view of these "nootropic smart drugs" (Ha! I used to shoot fent and smoke crack daily, what the hell could any of that crap do to me?)!
First off, THIS DRUG NEEDS TO BE RESPECTED! As I mentioned, I still smoke marijuana, but within reason, and never enough to REALLY change my state of mind; I actually genuinely enjoy my sobriety now, and I almost got uncomfortable with how "lifted" I felt after taking 1.5g the first time, not because it felt bad, but because it felt TOO FUCKING GOOD! I only waited ~1hr before taking another 1g, only to have the rest kick in minutes later, and I COULD NOT stop dancing in my driver's seat driving to a fairly high-profile IT-consulting client! Luckily, even though I FELT like I was clearly "messed up", not only did I do great at the client, but immediately met up with my fiancé (who got sober with me, she KNOWS what I look like inebrieted on anything) who swore, even after looking me over, that I looked completely sober.
I guess I write that to indicate 2 things: when people say this is like "clean alcohol", they aren't kidding. I'd say it's either that or "less visual ecstasy". Either way, it was actually NOT something I wanted to experience again, simply because philosophically it's not in line with how I want to be anymore. It made all my anxiety and mental issues associated with the Suboxone melt away; I actually forgot I was tapering!
The other reason is to talk about this as a MEDICATION; people often talk about rapid tolerance build-up, and after quickly adjusting my dose to 1.5-2g/day (in 1 or 2 doses), I noticed that I only felt a dose-proportionate response for a couple of days before many of the more interesting effects, the ones that lifted me above baseline, started to drop off. This is technically a "high", and while I was actually quite happy to have it go away, I was wondering if it was going to change the efficacy of it bringing me back up to baseline, which is what I think many people use it for (anti-anxiety, anti-insomnia, etc). I'm happy to report that it really hasn't seemed to, after 2-3 weeks of daily 2-2.5g/day use.
I also have taken the past day and a half off to make sure that I'm not jumping from one physical dependency to another, and I'm happy to report that I haven't experienced any rebound-anxiety and minimal rebound-insomnia.
I'm happy to report that I haven't experienced any rebound-anxiety and minimal rebound-insomnia.
From reading what literature I was able to glean from translating the Soviet papers on it (generally the only "professional" sources I could find), and online reports from people in the West, they all seem to agree that if you don't use >2g/day, withdrawal should be minimal.
I'll lay out a typical day on Phenibut below:
T+0:00h: Consume 2g Phenibut HCl orally on an empty-to-light stomach
T+0:45h: First alert, but may only recognize it after multiple uses; really just a repeatable, consistent, slight mood boost
T+1:00h: Even now, I generally don't feel like I've taken anything, but music often sounds better, and my day is generally "getting brighter". This is also when the many symptoms of Suboxone withdrawal (restless legs/everything, crippling anxiety over nothing, sweaty/shaking, etc) begin to go away.
T+1:30-2:00h: Here is where all symptoms of Suboxone withdrawal have melted away. After about 1 week of daily usage, I no longer get the following sensations because I'm unwilling to up the dose further, but this is also where intense waves of well-being, needing to dance to the music, and being super-social start occurring.
T+5:00-6:00h: This is where the intense highs start to wear off, but there will be residual effects for a while longer, such as the medicinal anti-anxiety and "withdrawal cure" effects.
T+12:00h: At this point, all effects have worn off. I generally have no after-effects whatsoever, although it seems many people report either having an afterglow or a hangover.
Music appreciation (strong)
Want to be social (strong)
Anti-insomnia (moderate, but not sedating)
Makes your body feel "looser", almost like a muscle-relaxer (mild)
Makes my eyes feel like they're moving slower (they aren't)
Potential hangover effect next-day (hard to evaluate true impact, appears to be minor)
Relatively rapid build-up to "getting high" effects (not negative to me!)
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