Project Doctor Shopping
Episode I – Project Deep Sedation
The Quest for the Holy Benzodiazepine
Happy days are here again
Success rating chart:
1/5 No recreational pharmaceuticals
2/5 Small amount of benzodiazepines
3/5 Medium amount of benzodiazepines
4/5 Large amount of benzodiazepines
5/5 Permanent script
Let us dream and sleep tonight
Note: This is very long, but if you read everything, I’ll love you so much! Thanks! 🙂
Recreational drug user branching into doctor shopping
Mr. Breathing Exercises
New age guy who’s very interested in breathing exercises
Doctor who is very stingy with benzodiazepines
Doctor who lectures you about the evils of benzos before very reluctantly prescribing
Nice counselor who would be very helpful if you really have problems. God bless you.
Doctor who breaks out with the script, no questions asked
Note:Identifying clinic names have been changed to XXX and doctor’s real names have been replaced with pseudonyms.
Part I Mr. Breathing Exercises
Location: University of XXX Counseling Service
I walked into the place because it’s free and they have clinical
psychiatrists which I assumed would be able to script me some benzos. A
counselor invited me into his room and talked to me about my ‘anxiety
problem’. I told him I’ve had panic attacks before and I’m feeling
anxious and unable to sleep recently and I nearly had a panic attack
again so that’s why I came in today. I said I was just lying in bed and
for no reason my heart started pounding really hard and I couldn’t
breath. I thought I was going to have a heart attack and I felt sure I
was going to die.
During all that, I kept fidgeting and tried to look strung out and
anxious. The counselor said it sounds like I have a very bad anxiety
problem and wanted to teach me some breathing exercises. I wanted to
steer the conversation to medication so I casually mentioned that I was
prescribed Valium when I had a bad panic attack a couple of years ago.
I didn’t say it like that, it was like “Hmm…I was given something
called…hmm…I think it was called Valium? and it really helped me a
lot”. He said “Oh, that’s good, but I’m not a doctor so I can’t script
At that point, I was ready to walk out the door, but out of
politeness, I didn’t. He taught me breathing exercises to help control
my ‘panic attacks’. After 15 minutes he looked at the clock and said
“Oh, we have 30 minutes left so let me teach you another technique”.
God save me…I was just here to bum a script. Well, the counselor was a
nice guy so I just smiled and nodded politely when he taught me ways to
control my ‘anxiety disorder’. Do you feel calmer now? Yeah it really
work’s doesn’t it? Yes, yes I said while thinking “Can I please go
now?”. 🙂 He’s a really nice dude though, so I didn’t want to be rude.
My handwriting is very distinctive, so…
A card with a list of things to do to control my ‘anxiety disorder’
Cost of consultation: A$0 – it’s a free service
Cost of medication: N/A
Success rating: -1/5
That’s for making me sit for 15 minutes practising breathing exercises!
Part II Benzo Nazi Visit #1
Location: University of XXX Health Service
This time I went to a real GP (doctor) at the university’s clinic. I
didn’t change my story from the first experiment but I embellished it a
bit. I said I had several panic attacks that I couldn’t control and I
checked myself into a hospital once because I really thought I was
going to die. I also mentioned I haven’t slept for several days and I
have a recurring anxiety problem. The doctor said not many Malaysian
students come in for anxiety problems and said it’s great that I would.
I said I wouldn’t come in too, except I had a really bad panic attack
yesterday and it’s affecting my studies. I stressed on the fact that I
couldn’t sleep and asked if there’s anything that would help me sleep
coz things gets strange after a while when I don’t sleep. I also said I
was given Valium before and it helped a lot with sleep.
Doctor: Have you ever taken any drugs? Ecstasy? Marijuana?
Me: No, I don’t take drugs. (lying through my teeth but maintaining eye contact)
Doctor: Do you go to clubs? Raves?
Me: No. (lying through my teeth and maintaining eye contact but wondering wtf this has got to do with anything)
Doctor: Do you drink alcohol?
Me: No…well, only during special occasions like Chinese New Year.
(again lying through my teeth but added an extra bit for realism)
Doctor: Well, I’m going to put you on something that’s going to help
you with the anxiety and panic attacks. Let me see if I have a sample
The doctor goes out of the room while I cross my fingers and hope
for benzos. The doctor comes in with: Zoloft (sertraline). Oh man…that
has zero recreational potential. I was trying to discourage him from
that and asked “Does it have any side effects?”. He said “Yes, there’s
quite a few” and told me about it. I tried to look doubtful but he said
he wants to try this before anything else. He said that even though it
might increase my anxiety as first, I should not stop taking one every
morning. I did not take any of course.
He then reached into a drawer and gave me three tablets in a blister
pack. “Here, this is to help you sleep”. I wanted to smile so badly coz
it’s almost certainly benzos but I kept a poker face and asked again
“Does it have any side effects?”. Just for the sake of realism you
know. He said not to take it with alcohol and only take one a day. He
also told me to come back again next week and tell me how it goes.
Temazepam blister pack – back view
I thanked him and could barely walk out of the room before reaching
into my pocket and reading the blister pack. Temazepam. 10 mg tablets
marked under Normison. Woo hoo, that’s better than nothing. I had it with some alcohol and cannabis [sixthseal.com] and it felt great.
7 x 50 mg Zoloft (sertraline) – no recreational potential
Temazepam blister pack – front view
3 x 10 mg Normison (temazepam) – a benzodiazepine
Cost of consultation: A$0 – used Medibank Private (health insurance)
Cost of medication: FREE
Success rating: 2.5/5
The extra 0.5 is coz it was free! 🙂
Part III Benzo Gestapo
Location: XXX Road Clinic
Disappointed at the meager returns from my previous endeavors, I
decided a change in story is required. This time I didn’t use my
Medibank Private health insurance. That is because my personal
information and medical history is inside and I was planning to tell a
WHOPPER of a story this time. I filled in my details as Tan Kim Leong
and put a fake address and waited in the waiting room. A nurse came out
Nurse: “Kim? Kim Leong?”
Me: (thinking) Who the hell is that guy who’s holding up the line?
Nurse: “Do we have a Kim Leong in here?”
I looked around the room.
I was the only Asian.
The nurse looked at me
I gave her a blank look.
Nurse: “Are you Kim?”
Oh fuck oh fuck oh fuck! I put Kim Leong down as my name! Stupid me! I didn’t even remember that! /kicks myself
Me: “Yeah, I’m Kim, sorry to have kept you waiting. I kinda zoned out a bit there.”
Nurse: “That’s okay, come on in”
Note to self: If you’re going to use a fake name, at least REMEMBER it, dumbass!
I went into the doctor’s office and told the doctor that I arrived in Melbourne on Wednesday (it was a Friday then).
Doctor: How can I help you?
Me: Well…..I had a bit of a…I guess you can call it a nervous breakdown about a month ago and I had to go to the hospital.
Doctor: What happened?
Me: Nothing, I was just sitting there, eating with my family when I
totally freaked out. I thought I was going to die. My heart was
pounding so hard and I couldn’t breath and the walls seem to close in
on me. I was so convinced I was going to die! The people at the
hospital refered me to a GP and I was diagnosed with panic disorder.
I’ve been put on this medication called…Klonopin I think it was. It’s a
round blue tablet with a K inside and I’m supposed to take it once a
Doctor: Klonopin. Let me check the database. Ah, its clonazepam. What happened then?
Me: Well, I came here on Wednesday and I had a month’s worth of tablets
with me and the customs officer seized it coz I didn’t have an
Australian doctor’s prescription. I didn’t even want to come to a
doctor but I couldn’t sleep and I had a very bad panic attack so I
called my mom and she called my doctor and the doctor said not to stop
taking it suddenly and asked me to see someone here. I tried to go to a
pharmacist but they said I had to get a doctor’s prescription.
(Man, I’m telling absolute whoppers here)
Doctor: Hmm…well that’s a very bad drug.
Me: Why is that? (pretending to be ignorant)
Doctor: It’s addictive
Me: IT’S ADDICTIVE?!?!? The doctor didn’t tell me that! (a bit of overacting but to keep the image right, you understand)
Doctor: Yeah, its very bad for you. I’ll teach you some breathing exercises to help control your panic attacks.
Oh God…not again…
Anyway, after the longest 10 minutes I ever experienced, the doctor
said, I’ll script you some tablets, but only take them if it’s
Doctor: (coming really close and looking me in the eye) Do you take
drugs? Amphetamines? Speed? Ecstasy? Heroin? Marijuana? LSD? (he
rattled off dozens of drug names and street terms, I’m not kidding!)
Me: (forcing myself to look straight into his eye) No, I don’t take drugs and I never have.
I was expecting lightning to strike me down on the spot. Please forgive me God. 🙂
I put mosiac on the address coz it’s just some address I passed by
while on my way to the clinic. It belongs to someone else, so I didn’t
want to show it. Also edited out the script number and doctor’s
signature. Don’t want to cause anyone any problems. Needless to say, my
real name is not Tan Kim Leong 🙂
Well, after that he broke out his script pad and he said it’s not the
same ones I got, but it’s similar in action. He reiterated the
addictive nature of benzos and told me to use the breathing exercises
instead of the tablets unless its absolutely necessary. He scripted me
20 x 5 mg Valium (diazepam) tablets.
I went to the pharmacist to cash in my script and got 50 x 5 mg
tablets instead of 20 x 5 mg tablets! The mind BOGGLES! The script
Diazepam tablets (5 mg)
Quantity: 20 (TWENTY)
The pill container said it contains 50 x 5 mg tablets. I took every
pill out and counted it and sure enough there were 50 inside! What
luck! Thank you Soul Pattinson Chemist for making a mistake giving me
20 extra tablets! That’s 50 mgs extra diazepam goodness. Haha!
Antenax – generic Valium (diazepam). That’s not my real name.
50 x 5 mg Antenax (generic Valium) (diazepam)
Cost of consultation: A$35 – didn’t use Medibank Private to support my whopper of a story
Cost of medication: A$10.65
Success rating: 3/5
Part IV The Angel
Location: XXX Community Mental Health Services and Counseling
This one looks promising. I went inside and made an appointment to
see a psychiatrist. A psychiatrist came out soon and invited me to her
office. She was very friendly and emphatic (psychiatrists are trained
that way) and I felt sorry about telling her my whopper of a story. It
was the same one I told in Part #3 Benzo Gestapo. She was extemally
symphetathic and was very apologetic because she said there are no
doctors here so she couldn’t script me the Klonopins. She was very
helpful and showed me where to go (because my whopper of a story said I
just came here two days ago) and kept on saying how terrible it was to
be under such stress right after coming here and how sorry she was for
She went out of her second floor office and walked with me to show
me where the nearest clinic was. I felt really, really bad at this
point coz I was just faking a story to get a script and she bought it.
🙁 She even walked with me the other way to show me where the
pharmacist was so I can cash my script after I get it. 🙁 That was
beyond the line of duty. I’m sorry! I was lying just to get a script
but your empathy is not wasted. I shower your firstborn with blessings
from the bottom of my heart. Thank you very much, you’re a very good
counselor and I’m sure your real patients think the same and appreciate
Sympathy and a sincere respect for counselors
Cost of consultation: A$0 – they don’t charge
Cost of medication: N/A
Success rating: 0/5
Part V Benzo Nazi Visit #2
Location: University XXX University Health Service
I had made an appointment for one week after the first visit so here
I am again. It’s free anyway. I told the doctor I still hasn’t been
able to sleep and the Zoloft made me so nauseous I could not bare to
take it after 5 days. I got that side effect from rxlist.com
[rxlist.com] – the scripter’s friend. 🙂 It was the highest incidence
among test subjects so I had already decided to use that excuse.
Doctor: What about the tablets for sleep? Did you finish that?
Me: (thinking) Of course I did, ate them on the same day with alcohol and cannabis even.
Me: (saying) No, I only took two because it didn’t help me sleep at all.
Why did I say that?
1.Saying I didn’t take all meant I’m not a benzo abuser
2.It also says that temazepam is not strong enough for me so hopefully a more powerful benzo will be prescribed
Front of brand name Valium blister pack
Well, the doctor said he’s going to put me on something new and went
out to get a sample pack. He came back with a box of Aropax
(paroxetine). -.- For crying out loud…why doesn’t he just script me
benzos. I was obviously steering him towards it. Now I’ve gotta give a
reason as to why I can’t take Aropax. Anyway, if you didn’t know, stuff
like Zoloft and Aropax is not recreational. You just don’t get high off
them but it has valid therapeutic uses.
Good thing he also gave me 3 x 5 mg Valium (diazepam) for sleep so
the trip was not a total waste. Everything was free anyway, so I can’t
complain. He told me to take the Aropax the same way and said its not a
first line defense against anxiety disorder so I’ll have to see him
next week again and see how it goes.
Back of brand name Valium blister pack
3 x 5 mg Valium (diazepam)
10 x 20 mg Aropax (paroxetine) – no recreational value
Cost of consultation: A$0 – Medibank Private insurance
Cost of medication: FREE
Success rating: 2.5/5
Again, the extra 0.5 coz it’s free.
Part VI Benzo Messiah
Location: XXX Medical Clinic
This one has a large sign behind the counter which says:
We DO NOT prescribe:
Or any other benzodiazepine and narcotics
to NEW PATIENTS
This doesn’t sound good at all. I filled up the new patient form
anyway and put my faith in my acting abilities. I was so dumb as to
write my real family name at first. Force of habit, ya know. I crossed
it out several times before putting Tan Boon Hock as my alias. The
receptionist took one look at my crossed out form and regarded me with
extreme suspicion. Oops!
I had to wait a long time too coz this clinic was very busy. I
noticed that each patient was with the doctor for only 3 minutes! Isn’t
that amazing? Anyway, it was soon my turn and this time I remembered my
alias. :p It was Tan Boon Hock if you want to know. Heh! Well, I went
to the doctor’s office and told him about my problem.
It was the same “customs confiscated my Klonopin” story except I now
said I had been diagnosed with panic disorder for a year and I have
been on clonazepam for 8 months (instead of the previous 2 weeks
story). Personally, I think that this a better cover story because you
can get seizures and other withdrawal symptoms if you suddenly stop
from a long term course of benzos.
Why am I so keen on clonazepam? Well, I have easy access of Xanax
(alprazolam) when I’m in Malaysia and I take that often then so I
wanted something different. Clonazepam is the same strength to
alprazolam when compared milligram to milligram but clonazepam doesn’t
take effect until 1-2 hours while alprazolam is pretty mush instant.
However, clonazepam lasts heaps longer, and I haven’t had it before so
I’m keen to try it.
Anyway, the doctor says he’s not familiar with Klonopin and flipped
through some drug database book. I didn’t want to say clonazepam coz
that makes it sounds like I’m too familiar with the drug. I wanted to
play the ignorant patient, not the knowledgeable scripter. I said it’s
a blue pill with a K shape inside. I could say K shaped perforation,
but that doesn’t fit the ignorant patient image does it?
Doctor: Ah, I’ve found it! It must be this one. Clonodine.
Me: (thinking) Oh my God, no, that’s an anti-hypertensive for high blood pressure.
Me: (speaking) No, that’s not the one. It’s K-l-o-n-o-p-i-n.
Doctor: It could be this one, things may be under different brand names over here. I’ll write a script for you.
Time for something drastic!
Me: Hmm…er, I think…I THINK its also called clonazepam. I’m not sure though.
Doctor: Ah! Clonazepam. Let me read the book and see if I’m allowed to prescribe that.
(riffling for a while)
Doctor: Yes, I’ll write a script for that. How much did you say you’re taking again?
Me: (thinking) Yes! Yes! Yes! Wipe that smile off your face before you give yourself away.
Me: (speaking) I was taking it twice a day.
Doctor writes Paxam (generic clonazepam) and 100 tablets on the script.
/me shouts for joy. Again script numbers, doctor’s signatures and such have been applied a mosiac.
Not out loud of course.
Doctor: How many mgs were the tablets? 2 mg?
Me: I don’t know, it was a blue pill. (FUCKING OVERACTING! WHY COULDN’T I JUST SAY YES?)
Doctor: Hmm…there’s no blue pill in the book.
Me: Well, I just take a blue pill twice a day.
(I wanted to say 2 mg then but I didn’t want to blow it by sounding like I had “drug seeking tendencies”)
Doctor: Twice a day? It could be 0.5 mg then.
Doctor writes 0.5 mg next to Paxam.
I curse the most obscene obscenities in my head.
Me: Thank you very much doctor.
Doctor: No worries, just get the pharmacy to call me if they have problems with the script. Okay? Good.
And then he rushed out to see the next patient.
Total time spent: 3 minutes
I love this doctor, he’s so busy that he just wants to work through the patients quickly.
From now on, I dub thee DR. FEELGOOD. I know who to visit next time
I want some benzos. Thanks doctor, you made me feel so much better
already. Hell, I’m practically cured from my ‘anxiety disorder’. 😉
100 x 0.5 mg Paxam (generic Klonopin) (clonazepam)
Cost of consultation: A$45 (!) but it’s worth it coz the street prices would be much higher
Cost of medication: A$18.85
Success rating: 4.5/5
The extra 0.5 coz it’s very possible to get a permanent script off Dr. Feelgood.
I’m still kicking myself over not saying yes when he asked whether
it was 2 mg. 🙁 I could have 200 mg of clonazepam goodness instead of a
comparatively paltry 50 mg. Did you know that I said “Fuck, I’m so
stupid” loudly and countless times while walking to the pharmacy? Oh,
the lost chance to get 100 x 2 mg clonazepam. 🙁 Seriously, I did that.
People must have thought I was fuckin bonkers…
Oh well, at least I got 100 x 0.5 mg. 100 x 0.5 mg comes up to 50 mg
of clonazepam so that’s nothing to sniff about. That’s 20 doses
assuming you take 5 mg + alcohol + cannabis.
Project Deep Sedation
The Quest for the Holy Benzodiazepine
100 x 0.5 mg clonazepam (Klonopin)
50 x 5 mg diazepam (Valium)
3 x 10 mg temazepam (Restoril)
3 x 5 mg diazepam (Valium)
You have to be economical with the truth especially when they ask you
about any drug usage. This is a red flag that you could be a scripter.
Use your health insurance card sparingly. They collate information
and if they happen to notice you’re seeing different doctors and
getting scripts for restricted drugs off them all you’re going to be
flagged as doctor shopping.
Don’t cash scripts at the same pharmacy. You would look very
suspicious if you went up with a fistful of scripts for benzos from