The story of my 68-year-old father’s addiction to Opium (true story)

My father was addicted to Opium  for more than thirty years, but when he expressed his desire to get rid of addiction, few people thought that he would succeed in this task.

My sixty-eight-year-old father decided to quit his addiction at The beginning of the fourteen hundred solar year, that is 2022 AD. He had fought with himself for a long time to reach this decision. My father was one of those addicts who deny their addiction for years.

This denial had continued for years by hiding drugs and secret consumption. We – i.e. the family members – did not show him that he is an addict. He also did not show any desire to leave the juice that was his substance.

Events happened at the beginning of 1400 that blocked the way for my father to deny addiction. The story was that in the early months of 1400, he showed symptoms of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Before that, sometimes forgetfulness happened to him, which we attributed to aging. But he never left his drugs – Opium – anywhere.

For the first time, when my father left his entire two-week ration of Opium in the toilet and my mother found it, it became clear that denying his addiction would no longer be as simple as before.

I very respectfully gave him his medicine and said: Your medicine was left in the toilet. My father really fell! But it only took two days for him to leave his materials there again!

This time I gave him his juice but it was a very worrying issue. That he had consumed about ten grams of those substances in just two days. This indicated that he probably forgets his promises and the amount of drugs he consumes. The forgetfulness probably led to his overdose and the severity of his addiction.

When I gave my father the drugs he had left in the toilet for the second time, I was almost certain that he would have to quit the juice. Although I had such a belief, I did not raise this issue. Rather, I told him that we should see a specialist for his forgetfulness problem.

He did not answer me. My father’s behavior showed that he could not accept that he had Alzheimer’s disease even in its mild form. At the same time, he does not know what to do in this situation.

But I knew that I had to get him to a place where he would realize that he has reached the last steps of addiction and drug use, and from now on, if he does not give up his addiction, there will be very serious consequences. I took the next step two weeks later.

It was necessary for a specialist doctor to warn him that the strong addiction to Opium and the numerous cigarettes he consumes during his binge will aggravate his disease and the day will soon come when he will turn into a shadow.

I took my father to see a neurologist two weeks after he left his drugs in the toilet for the second time. After seeing the results of the brain MRI and the detailed questions he asked my father, the doctor gave him the warning that my father needed to hear.

The doctor told my father that the name of his disease is dementia. Besides, the way to control this disease is to change the lifestyle and refrain from using any kind of drugs and tobacco.

When we left the doctor’s room, I said to my father: You used to take the juice as a sedative, but this medicine is no longer useful for you. You must leave it. My father hesitantly said: I will leave him little by little!

The way my father talked about quitting that day was the same way he finally broke his juice addiction. It means that he quit his addiction gradually. Of course, the story of my father’s addiction recovery and, in other words, the detoxification of his body from Opium , did not end as he thought.

I reminded him every week for 2 months that he should quit his addiction and he always said that he is not ready now! Like all addicts who have reached the end of the line and sometimes think about quitting, every time I talked to him about quitting, he promised the next week!

My father’s solution to get rid of addiction was to postpone it from one week to the next, but in the meantime, bad and unpleasant things continued to happen, making it difficult for him to continue using.

One day, when we had a small birthday party at home for the only grandson of the family, my father did something that worried our whole family.

My niece’s birthday party was one of the days when my father reached the peak of his addictive and strange behavior. This birthday party was the turning point of my father’s addiction recovery. If you are also dealing with the issue of de-addiction of the elderly, you should wait for these milestones. He lost his ingredients again that night. When we gave him the ingredients, he claimed that the ingredients were for my sister’s husband!

While my sister’s husband was never a drug addict or even a smoker. Then he tried to make changes in his suit with thread and needle. While he did not have the concentration and balance for this work at all.

Another strange thing he did was that he called my brother and said to buy me a yellow shirt. This request was also unprecedented and strange. My father was not old enough to wear a yellow shirt. Although I have to admit, this shirt was very tight.

Of course, if you wore the best clothes in the world that night, with that color and dark face and soulless eyes, you still wouldn’t look like a handsome or even ordinary person. What my father looked like that night and all the nights before he got rid of addiction was this: a hot addict!

I and other family members were looking at my father with sadness and concern that night. In addition to the behaviors I mentioned before, he also naps from time to time. This napping made him look more and more like a pitiful drug addict.

Later that night, my father and I were alone at home.

My father was a little better than the previous hours. He turned to me and said: “The herbal doctor whom I go to for my digestive problem has moved his life from Tehran to the north.” I am also thinking of going to the north. “I can no longer tolerate the traffic, pollution and noise of Tehran.”

I said: Our digestion problem cannot be solved by going north. Your digestive problem is due to juice consumption. If you start addiction recovery, there will be no more effects of digestive problems. You were supposed to tell me when you were ready to quit Shire so that I could help you.

Maybe it was the first time that I talked to my father about the need to quit addiction. Interestingly, my father suddenly said: let’s do this sooner. I am ready.

It was unbelievable. For the first time, my father announced his readiness to quit his addiction. Now it was my turn to make his desire to quit his addiction come to fruition. But what should I have done?

That fateful night, my father announced his readiness to quit addiction after struggling with himself for a long time. That night, in addition to happiness, I had my own worries.

On the other hand, I was happy because my patience paid off and my father wanted to get rid of his addiction. On the other hand, I was worried about how a 68-year-old addict would go through the Opium  detoxification process.

I also had problems in my personal life that did not allow me to sleep peacefully that night. I didn’t have a permanent job for several months and I was working as a freelance writer for different clients.

Exactly two days before my father decided to quit addiction, one of my friends had introduced me to a news agency to work as a presenter of video reports.

I had discussed my conditions in terms of salary and working hours over the phone with the official of that news agency, who specialized in mining and mining industries, and he had accepted my conditions.

I was supposed to go to the face-to-face interview the next night when my father announced his readiness to get rid of addiction. I was almost sure that they would hire me after the face-to-face interview. But what was I going to do about my father’s addiction recovery for which I had waited all these years? On this particular night of my life, should I have only thought about how my father managed to detoxify the opium sap? Or was I thinking about my work and career?

Maybe I could have told the person to give me a week at most and then go to work. The problem was that I knew that the detoxification of Opium  and the follow-up after my father’s detoxification would take more than a week.

I could have told my father to wait a while and delay the withdrawal. During this time – for example, two months – I would settle into my new job and then I could think about how to get rid of my father’s addiction. My father definitely wanted God to say such a thing!

The problem was that my father’s desire to quit addiction was likely to turn into reluctance during the time I was settling into my new job. I didn’t want to miss this golden opportunity created by my father’s desire to quit addiction.

Another important issue was the hardships of the opium sap detoxification period, which was not easy for an old addict to go through.

These thoughts did not allow me to sleep that night. When dawn broke, I had made my decision. Nothing was more important than my father’s addiction recovery and it had to start immediately.

I had previously studied and researched for the detoxification of opium sap. I chose and planned the method that was most suitable for my father’s detoxification and his age.

That morning, I waited for my father to eat his breakfast and then I told him: We will start your addiction treatment right now.

My father was a little embarrassed and said: We can leave it for tomorrow!

I said: We will start today and the plan is to go to our village house. There, we will reduce your consumption until you reach the stage of complete withdrawal.

An hour later we were on our way to our country house. Many strange things happened there that I had no idea about.

Here I want to narrate my first problem during the first week of my father’s detoxification.

First, I must say that I took the responsibility of helping my father, but I did not have expertise in elderly addiction treatment. Inexperience caused me to have a hard time during the first week of my father’s detox.

The two of us went to our rural house in a relatively remote area of central Iran. My idea was that I would be able to control him more easily there. One of the difficulties in de-addiction of the elderly is gradually separating them from substances and controlling their consumption. I had this problem with my father.

The first thing I had to do was to get the drugs out of my father’s reach. Quitting juice, or taking control of drugs from my father, seemed like a simple task. If things went according to plan, my father would have to give me his ingredients so that I could gradually reduce his consumption.

Elderly drug addiction seems similar to youth drug addiction to inexperienced people like me. The main difference with a senior detox is that you can’t be too hard when they don’t cooperate! This problem becomes acute when the elderly person who wants to quit his addiction is your father. My father’s first refusal to cooperate with me occurred in the delivery of his materials.

When we reached the village house, I asked my father to hand over his materials to me at the first opportunity. I said before that my father was addicted to Opium . He had brought some handbags with him and started rummaging through these handbags. He did this very slowly. It was clear that he had no desire to give me control over the most important thing in his life.

I advise people who want to leave their father or other addicted relatives to be very patient Because it is impossible to get rid of the addiction of the elderly without patience!

I had to ask my father several times and repeat to hand over his materials to me. Every time he said very logically and submissively: OK, but there was no news about delivering his precious juices to me!

My father was looking through his bags carefully and in slow motion under my heavy gaze! I watched him and saw him go to the pocket of his suit, shirts and trousers and search them. I was bored with my father’s slow movements and all the procrastination he used. I felt that my father was waiting for a moment of negligence on my part to keep a part of his materials!

I waited in silence and my father finally gave me a package containing about 15 grams of Opium . I think it was the first time in his life that he gave something that was like the glass of his life to someone!

In addition to that package of Opium  wrapped in a thick nylon, there were a lot of stomach pills, blood pressure pills, cold pills, pain relievers, sleeping pills, and cough syrup in my father’s bag, which I took from him.

Getting rid of the addiction of the elderly is actually getting rid of many drugs that they take on their own! From 30 years ago until that day, I was a spectator of the pills and medicines that my father took on his own. He had a digestive problem from a young age, which seemed to be aggravated by the consumption of Opium . My father complained of cold once or twice a week and taking cold pills was like eating chocolate for him!

Blood pressure regulating pills, sleeping pills, and cough syrup were recently added to My father’s home pharmacy! This pharmacy was finally closed by my order after about 30 years of continuous work!

to be continued …

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