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Topic : 08/29 Secret Lives of Single Moms

Number of Replies: 32
New Messages This Week: 0
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Created on : Thursday, August 25, 2005, 03:50:22 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1

Being a single mother is hard enough, but imagine juggling soccer practice, PTA meetings and homework ... all while trying to cover up a secret life. Susan is a single mom with two kids who works as a prostitute to pay the bills. She says she's never had a real job in her life and is addicted to the money. Can Susan say goodbye to her dangerous job and turn her life around? Then, Stephanie's a single mother of four who's been hiding her secret for 12 years. She's addicted to painkillers and takes 60 times the recommended dosage just to make it through the day. Fearing for their lives and the lives of their children, they both turn to Dr. Phil. Share your thoughts here.

 

Find out what happened on the show.


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August 29, 2005, 2:01 pm CDT

I just didn't believe her.

Ijust couldn't believe that the mom by day prostitute by night really wanted to change. The focus on money and material things over her own safety and in turn the safety of her children just overwhelmed and upset me.  

  

I understand the desire to remain anonymous... but if no one around her knows her situation where is she going to get her support from? Being on Dr Phil may have been a step in the right direction... but it was a small one.  

 
August 29, 2005, 2:10 pm CDT

Trouble understanding

I am having difficulty understanding how she earns $22,000 a year and is able to support 4 kids and a $500.00 a month drug addiction.
 
August 29, 2005, 2:23 pm CDT

Susan and Stephanie are enslaved...

I felt enormous sadness for both of these women. Both have lifestyles that are longstanding. Both are going to have to struggle to get involved and invested in a different life. Susan and Stephanie have a very poor sense of self-worth. While I feel hopeful for both of these women, they have just started to tackle a real ‘Bear’ of a fight. I’m cheering for both of them. Both they and their children deserve lives of REAL Freedom!!!  

 
August 29, 2005, 3:41 pm CDT

08/29 Secret Lives of Single Moms

Quote From: profderien

I am glad that Stephanie has this venue to air her addiction problem, to get help, and to serve as a symbol of hope to others in her position -- there are many, many leading lives of quiet desperation.     

    

Still, I am tired of the show concentrating on abusers of prescription medications -- as a person with legitimate need of those drugs due to severe chronic pain, I notice that my pain management doctors have become more and more afraid of being accused of over-prescribing, of being noticed by some oversight entity.  Their hesitency only results in me having days wherein the pain is so intense I pray to die.   

    

I take 20 mg. of methadone three times a day, and I am allowed up to 25 mg. of oxycodone per day for what is called breakthrough pain -- pain that has "escaped" the coverage of the methadone.  

   

Since March, and the complete collapse of the bones in my shoulder, I have been nearly begging for an increase in dosage -- temporarily  -- until the joint is replaced [Sept 19.  The doctors are afraid... which is ludicrous.  Their fear comes from "the war on drugs," as well as the groundswell of real abuse ongoing with medications like hydrocodone, oxycodone.  

   

These broad brushstrokes are painting innocent people.  I have been at the above-cited dosages, or LOWER, for about nine years.   

    

Unbeknownst to my doctors, I even make myself take "drug holidays" at least once a month.  Why and what does it entail?  First the "why." Because of the impact of shows like this one!  I get down on myself and wonder about the possibility of addiction.  How it is done:  I taper off of the pain meds, more rapidly than is probably good, and I do an inventory of where the pains are, and their various intensities.  I don't have withdrawal symptoms, at least none that I am aware of... What I am aware of is incredible pain. I am in a wheelchair normally... but during the drug holiday, I am usually in bed!  

    

The value of my drug holidays is that they seem to "reset" my system.  For awhile, at least, I need less breakthrough medication... and I don't need to rely so much on, say, lying down, covered with ice packs, and some stupid imagery tape strapped on my head!     

    

I am so very glad that Stephanie will be afforded the help she needs and I wish her the best in her recovery.   

    

Just please, please, please -- consider balancing such guest stories with stories of those who have real [severe chronic pain.  My pain comes from the co-mingling antics of lupus, CRPS/RSD, and osteonecrosis [AVN -- and a partridge in a pear tree!    

    

The drugs are not the *best* treatment for pain, of course!  Attitude is everything; Love is so powerful... and the complete Marx Brothers collection can almost be curative!   

I completely agree about doctors being afraid to precribe medicines to people who actually need them! I suffered a concussion a couple years back and the hospital gave me a couple days worth of percocet for the pain and told me to go to the dr for a follow up. so when I went he told me he thought the pain was emotional and wouldnt give me any more. I only needed it for about another week but i'm sure it was because he was afraid i would get addicted. No one believes me when i say this but i don't have an addictive personality. I have never been addicted to anything and in fact i have several medications that i've been precribed that i dont even take. they wont give my mom a medicine for sleeping that is safer than the newer stuff because they say its addictive also. now i having back problems but i'm sure i will be told just to take tylenol or something that doesnt help. I wish i knew what online pharmacy this lady is using or at least of some that are safe, that will give you a precription online through one of their doctors, that would actually give you the real medicine. I'm surprised she has always gotten the right stuff, as its hard to know what companys are reputable. i think that as long as you are truthful in their questionaires (unlike the lady today) online pharmacies could be a valuable and accurate and less hassle tool to those of us who actually need medicine.
 
August 29, 2005, 4:04 pm CDT

I AM ADDICTED TO PAINKILLERS

I AM 32 YEARS OLD AND A MOTHER OF A 12 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER. I JUST GRADUATED FROM COLLEGE AND I WORK FROM HOME AS A MEDICAL TRANSCRIPTIONIST. I WATCHED TODAYS SHOW AND I FELT LIKE I WAS WATCHING MY LIFE ON TV. I HAVE BEEN ADDICTED TO PAINKILLERS NOW FOR ABOUT 3 YEARS. I TAKE ABOUT 16 PILLS A DAY. I COME FROM A FAMILY OF ADDICTS. I HAVE NEVER BEEN ADDICTED TO ANYTHING BESIDES CIGARETTES. I GOT INTO A CAR ACCIDENT AND MY DOCTOR PUT ME ON VICODIN. I DO NOT EVEN DRINK OR DO ANY OTHER DRUGS. I AM IN CHRONIC PAIN EVERYDAY. I CAN NOT EVEN GET OUT OF BED WITHOUT TAKING 4 PILLS FIRST THING IN THE MORNING. I HAD A FRIEND WHO WORKED FOR A COMPANY WHERE HE HAD ACCESS TO UNLIMITED AMOUNTS OF PAIN PILLS. AT THAT TIME I WAS TAKING 30 PILLS A DAY. WHEN HE COULD NOT GET THEM ANYMORE I WAS SO AFRAID OF THE WAY I WAS GOING TO FEEL. I WAS UP FOR 5 DAYS STRAIGHT GOING THROUGH WITHDRAWS. I MADE IT THROUGH THE PHYSICAL PART, BUT THE MENTAL PART IS WHAT MADE ME GO BACK AGAIN. I WAS SPENDING A LOT OF MONEY ON PILLS AND ALMOST LOST EVERYTHING I OWNED. I NOW GET ENOUGH FROM MY DOCTOR SO I DO NOT RUN OUT. I WANT SO BAD TO STOP TAKING PILLS AND BE ABLE TO DEAL WITH MY PAIN, BUT I AM SO SCARED OF THE PHYSICAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL WITHDRAWS. I HAVE A WONDERFUL FIANCE WHO COMPLETELY UNDERSTANDS WHAT I AM GOING THROUGH. I AM ALSO IN THE PROCESS OF A BIG CUSTODY BATTLE WITH MY EX. I LET MY DAUGHTER GO VISIT HIM AND HE NEVER SENT HER BACK. I HAVE TO FLY UP TO MAINE ON SEP 28. I DO NOT THINK THAT I CAN MAKE IT THROUGH THIS HARD TIME WITHOUT MY PILLS. I DO NOT WANT MY DAUGHTER TO KNOW ABOUT MY ADDICTION. I JUST WANT TO STOP TAKING THEM WITHOUT THE PHYSICAL WITHDRAWS AND BE ABLE TO COPE WITH MY BACK PAIN AND MY TMJ. I HAVE NO INSURANCE AND CAN NOT AFFORD TO GET HELP. I REFUSE TO GO TO A METHADONE CLINIC BECAUSE I FEEL THAT YOU ARE SWITCHING ONE DRUG FOR ANOTHER. HOPEFULLY SOMEONE CAN HELP ME!!!!!!!!!!!!
 
August 29, 2005, 4:17 pm CDT

Re: the woman who is a prostitute

I can't help but feel this woman who is a single parent is at least providing food, shelter and clothing for her children.  She's not dependent on the system.  Of coarse it's dangerous and not a "jpb" anyone would want, but as she said she doesn't have skills for a real job.  I understand where she's coming from.  I wish someone would offer her a way to learn the skills she needs to support her family. In the meantime, I for one respect her for not looking for a handout. 
 
August 29, 2005, 4:48 pm CDT

My heart went out to Susan...

Your shame was palpable. I could see that you were not even able to look at Dr Phil as you talked to him. Being on TV had to be the worst thing imagineable and I admire your courage. What a first step to take in the claiming of your dignity and self worth! You have the best person in your corner, I think you can do this. Good luck, and keep your chin up.
 
August 29, 2005, 5:24 pm CDT

Where you Live

Quote From: dap180aa

I am having difficulty understanding how she earns $22,000 a year and is able to support 4 kids and a $500.00 a month drug addiction.
I think it's WHERE YOU LIVE.  I live in a big city and it's kind of expensive, but alot of things you can buy that you don't need, but you buy anyway.  I go travel to this farm town in our state that is 2 hours outside the city and it doesn't even have a McDonalds.... You can buy a nice house in a good school system for $45,000 or less. And there's NO WHERE to spend your money:  NOT EVEN A WALMART.... 
 
August 29, 2005, 5:31 pm CDT

thinking of your kids

I understand why you dont want to give the money up, even though what you're doing isn't so great, you're thinking of you're kids. I remember when my mom would sacrifice herself by staying with my dad, only because she didn't want us to suffer. I remember not getting the things I wanted, like that certain Barbie doll I was crazy about, but I knew that my mom couldn't afford it. I remember all that, but you know what? Even though the change will be hard, and you think your kids are gonna suffer, when they're older, they'll look back and say "You know, there were many times when I couldn't get what I wanted, but my mother turned her whole life around, not to give us pretty things, but so that we could have our mother, so that we could look up to her, and apriciate her and be proud of her accomplishments." If you keep doing that, (and believe me you're kids will find out) they'll feel guilty for getting the things that they get. They'll just think "My mom is putting her life on the line, just to get me these nice things". 

I love my other and everything she's done for us, she's my hero, and I couldn't be more proud of her. You kids will not resent you for sacrificing they're "safe" home. They'll feel alot more safe knowing that they're mother isn't out on the streets doing the things that you do.  

 
August 29, 2005, 6:35 pm CDT

Come on Dr. MeGraw

Regarding Susan, the mother addicted to pain killers.... Susan you really needed to hear everything that Dr. McGraw said.  I so hope that you can get the help that you need.  Your embarrassment was evident and I applaud you for having the guts and the courage to air your story.  I will be thinking of you and hoping and praying for the best for you and for your children.  I do not feel that you were trying to cover up anything or skirt around any issues  It was evident you were taking complete and full responsibility for your bad choices and actions.  Dr. McGraw.... you were right on to say what you said... but did you have to BLAST the poor woman on and on.  I bet even Robin told you you may have been a little harsh on the poor woman.   

 
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