Citation: speedracer. "Halogenated Computer Zombie: An Experience with 4-FMA (exp100586)". Erowid.org. Jul 12, 2014. erowid.org/exp/100586
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I wanted to write this experience report because I have never seen any documentation of addiction to research chemical (halogenated) amphetamines. Not a single forum post or report that someone was hooked on this dirty halogenated amphetamine class like I was. So I figured I'd tell my story.
My first run-in with the new-age amphetamines (4-FA, 4-FMA, and 2-FMA in my case) was rather benign. It was the peak of online research chemical trading in 2011 and, being a 20 year old with an addictive personality, I was on a mission to catch them all. I had been kicked out of my parent’s house, my girlfriend broke up with me for another guy, I had dropped out of college, had no job, and I was living in a trailer park. What did I have to lose?
In terms of research chemicals, I had previously tried 2C-E, 25i-NBOMe, 5-MeO-DALT, and MXE. Somewhere in one of those orders I had decided to pick up 5 grams of 4-Fluoromethamphetamine (4-FMA). Even though I rationalized it as just wanting to get my money’s worth on the risk of a shipment, it was really just the next logical step down a path I’d been on for a while. I had been doing Adderall, Concerta, Vyvanse, and Ritalin all but daily for the past year. My tolerance was high and my bank account was low, so a cheap low-grade methamphetamine analog was just the next step.
Anyway I kept that bag of 4-FMA unopened for a few days while my friend’s Adderall script was still alive. But one night it just called my name and I gave into it without a second thought. It was an hour before the annual Christmas party at my Grandpa’s house. It was the biggest family party of the year, everyone got together and it was a jolly old time. But as I mentioned earlier, I was kicked out at the time and my anxiety was crushing in on me. Everyone there knew of my struggles and I could already feel the impenetrable stare of the collective family upon my current failures. So I swallowed 20mg of Adderall, my typical social lubricant for group gatherings.
But I wasn’t ready to head over there just yet, so I sat in a parking lot, stalling, when I decided that a little more speed would surely help solve all my problems. It would eradicate my anxiety and make me just that much more likeable and awesome. So I ripped open the bag, laid out a line on a textbook from a class I had dropped out of, ripped off the ends of a pen and did the deed.
[Erowid Note: Eyeballing high potency substances can be dangerous. Two samples of powder (even of the same chemical) with equivalent volumes won't necessarily weigh the same. For this reason, eyeballing is an inaccurate and potentially dangerous method of measuring, particularly for substances that are active in very small amounts. See related article]
It hit me like a freight train within a few minutes. I was euphoric but at the same time clearly tweaking my ass off. I was twitching, my jaw clenching, my hand lightly shaking with tremors. But I didn’t notice that or perhaps chose to ignore it as I made my way to the party. I walked up to the house with that stupid chemically-induced swagger that stimulants tend to give you. Dopamine was being released and not taken back up again...I was ready to show my familiy that I wasn’t just any old burn out, I was a superior amphetamine-soaked being.
I walked in, said my hellos and everything seemed normal. I was super talkative with all of my cousins and aunts and uncles, basically shouting as I tried to impress them by how much intense enthusiasm I could show about their lives. Dale Carnegie would have been proud. Sure I was fidgeting like a boy in Sunday School and sure my eyes were darting around the room like a dealer before the deal goes down, but damn was I sociable! Everyone loved talking to me and thought I was just the greatest conversationalist they’d ever had the pleasure of conversing with. I was a superior social being. Man, the delusions are so immersive.
I started to realize something was wrong near the end of the evening when my dad kept looking at me anxiously and saying, “T, settle DOWN”. I was shifting non-stop in my chair as we opened gifts that my very generous grandfather had bought for us. I don’t remember exactly what I was doing, but I just remember being extremely irritable and wanting to get the hell out of there at that point. I was bouncing in my seat, counting down the presents left to unwrap, itching to redose as soon as I hit the road. But at the time of course it was just my hypercritical dad wanting to start drama. I am on speed, I can do no wrong.
A bit later I raced through goodbyes and made a quick exit from the party after opening gifts. But I was stopped midway down the driveway by my mom’s cousin and her son. They had just lost their daughter/sister respectively from an overdose and were gravely concerned that I was headed that way too. Her son tried to talk calmly to me and tell me that that stimulant shit is no good. I was just tweaking away agreeing with everything he said with a forced smile and laugh. His mom gave me a huge hug and told me to be careful at least 5 times within a minute. What was that all about?
I walked away thinking, “Wow they are so ignorant. Don’t they know that she was doing opiates and I’m just doing amphetamines? I am the superior drug addict.” But as I drove back to where I was living at the time, I was coming down and the night sort of washed over me. I realized in a moment of painful clarity that I had just become the family enigma. I had gone to the most sacred family party of the year visibly tweaking on a methamphetamine analog and ruined the party. But after a few minutes of hindsight horror, I just popped another Addy, snorted another line, got lost behind my computer screen and put it out of mind. I am a speed racer, superior being who brushes off guilt so easily.
Soon after that, I had a falling out with my Adderall dealer/girl who I had been living with. I moved back home and basically holed up in my room with my computer for 6 months, only leaving the house to go open my PO Box and retrieve my 5 to 9 grams of whatever RC amphetamine I could get my hands on.
I would weigh out 100-200mg on a scale and put it in these blue and purple caps I bought from Amazon. It became my ritual. I would take it and become one with the computer. Hours would pass in minutes, my fingers would fly between keyboard and mouse as I navigated the 40 open tabs in my browser. The pattern became set in stone, I stay up for 48 hours and sleep for 6. Without fail this happened for 4 months straight. Looking back on those months is like looking at a stop motion film. A gravely worried mother and father filter in and out, my bedroom piles up with filth, dreary winter turns to spring and there I sit through it all, the constant, eyes glued to the screen because that was all that mattered.
Sure spending 20 hours a day on the computer with intense artificial focus allowed me to build a very successful online business. But at what cost? I had lost 40 pounds, my cheeks were sunken, I was incredibly pale, I was having constant auditory hallucinations, I had head rushes that almost made me faint every time I stood up, my skin developed a weird acidic smell, I stopped showering, my hands shook violently with tremors, I worried I was going to die of a stroke or heart attack every single day, I had no meaningful relationship with anyone outside the digital world, and I was just empty. Spent and empty.
When I was on just the prescription ADD medication, I would still have a social life and still be at least semi-normal. But on this stuff, I became a zombie in almost every sense of the word. As I mentioned above I became ghost white, my skin smelled really sour and awful, and a legitimate smile or laugh never formed on my face. I’m not going to say these halogenated amphs aren’t in the same league as dextroamphetamine or methylphenidate, but they are in a much more soul-sucking, dark, and dangerous ballpark on the other side of town.
After my mom discovered my stash and told me I had to either stop killing myself or leave the house, I realized what a mess it all was. She flushed the latest shipment and I slept for about 2 weeks with very few conscious moments. When I would have breaks from the prescription stuff, I would be unfocused, irritable and sleepy, but never just completely unable to operate for 2 weeks.
The Wikipedia Article for 4-Fluoroamphetamine says that it’s not as neurotoxic as many believe, if at all. But from my experience, it is toxic in many other ways.
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