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Intense 14 Months of my Life
Citation:   Tanis. "Intense 14 Months of my Life: An Experience with Methamphetamine (exp40390)". Apr 30, 2008.

  repeated   Methamphetamine
I'm writing this to give my perspective on crystal meth use, as a former enthusiast.

As someone who has done a lot of drugs, and generally been able to handle them pretty well, I was seriously scared by what meth did to me. Doing it for only 14 months, it almost completely took over my life. I'm not saying it wasn't alot of fun, cause it was, and doing crystal did indeed feel better than anything else except E. But when I finally forced myself to get off it, I could not believe some of the things I had said or done during those months. I made stupid choices, simply because I hadn't slept in a day or two or six. And worst of all, I was completely paranoid, and had all the symptoms of what is apparently called amphetamine psychosis. My brother had schizophrenia, and a lot of stuff I was doing was pretty similar to some of the stuff he had done (he's no longer here). I've now been off meth for four months and a few days, and it's been extremely hard not to go find it. The paranoia is only now starting to go away, and I know I will never be quite the same as I was before. This is my report.

I was a really good kid in high school, and never did drugs until I moved out when I was 19. I met this guy who smoked pot and was into the rave scene, and I quickly got into those things. I remember doing E for the first time, and feeling as though my consciousness had changed for the better in the course of a single night. After that I was convinced that most drugs were helpful if used safely, and I still believe that. I started doing E on an every-two-months-or-so basis, plus mushrooms when they were around, and of course weed almost every day. That went on for a couple of years.

Around that time, my boyfriend started feeling like he didn't want to do E anymore, or really any drugs very often. We got into huge fights because I still did. But to calm him down, I cut back on the E and started doing coke on the down-lo. A lot of my friends were getting into coke, so I started doing lines everywhere: at work, at university, on the greyhound bus when I went to visit my parents. I took another part-time job to pay for blow, although at the time I rationalized it as just 'never having enough $ for stuff I needed'. By April of 2003, I was doing 1-2 grams a week, not insane amounts, but enough that it was a factor in my life. If I were going out to a club, for example, and couldn't find coke, I would be in a bad mood all night.

Also around that time, one of my cokehead friends introduced me to crystal. I'd worked til midnight (I waitressed 5 nights a week), and we'd gone to a drum and bass night at a local club. I knew she did crystal, and I'd wanted to try it for some time, so something made me say 'I wish I had something to keep me up, I'm just burned out from work.' Of course she said 'Well...', and pulled out a little baggie which looked to have almost nothing in it. Later I learned it was a point baggie. We each did a line, which burned like crazy, but I liked it. We ended up staying up all night, dancing, then playing scattergories until 7 in the morning with these 19 year-old guys who sold crystal.

I remember that by 7, I felt ill. We'd done probably 10 lines each, and the water I kept drinking went right through me. I went home and tried to sleep. I couldn't, and ended up getting up to go do the errands I had to do that day. I felt absolutely terrible until I did a little bit of the meth I'd bought and had left. I ended up finishing it that night at a club, but telling myself I'd never do it again.

So in June of that year, my little brother died suddenly. Shortly thereafter my boyfriend and I broke up, and made plans to move out and find out own apartments. Purely by chance, I was introduced to another guy who sold meth. I started buying it 3-4 times a week, in small amounts, about 3 or 4 points at a time. I didn't think it was a problem, because it helped me get stuff done. I worked better on meth, needed way less sleep, was thinner and (to my mind) sexier, etc. And as someone who also just liked to get high, meth was fucking amazing. The first summer I was on it stands out as the most physically pleasurable four months of my life. I used to do lines toward the end of my night shifts, smoke pot, and feel like I'd done a cap of E. Or I'd do it to go out to party, and feel like I never had to sleep again. I loved meth. I even got a little carrying case for it, a little tin that held baggies, a straw and a razor, and I'd do lines everywhere I went, in bathroom stalls across the city.

At the same time, I basically stopped drinking, because I realized that when I was spun out, I couldn't feel how drunk I was getting. I would wake up, or (more accurately) get out of bed the next day, puking like I was going to die. I started puking up blood all the time. After that I cut back a bit and made more of an effort to eat during the day. Still, there were a lot of days when I'd have to force myself to drink a v-8, and eat some toast. And once, after being up for 7 days straight, I had a breakdown when I couldn't sleep on the day I had planned to. They were spraying for bugs in the apartment my boyfriend and I still lived in, and everyone had to leave the building. All I could think of was that if I didn't have someplace to go to sleep, I was going to die. I needed to sleep that badly. I wound up walking around downtown in a sort of daze until the hour I could go back. Of course by then I'd done more meth and couldn't get to sleep easily anyway.

In Sept. of 2003, I started doing more again. It was the weirdest thing, though, because although I knew I was doing more meth (now a gram, 3-4 times a week), I kept telling myself, 'Well, now it's under control, it's not a problem, I know how to sleep/eat/function on it.' And to an extent I did. It made me efficient enough that it verged on obsessive-compulsive disorder (I'm a psych student). I took a year off school to grieve the death of my brother and work full time. Of course, that also involved doing crystal full time. I would routinely stay up for 5 days at a time: go to work every day, go out to party every night. At the end of those binges I would hear things and be in insanely-fucked-up moods, but none of it was that bad. My apartment was spotless, for one thing. The dishes were always done, and I looked great in my clothes.

It was all fine until I started getting paranoid. Around Dec. 0f 2003, my dealer disappeared for three weeks, and I was forced to detox. I freaked out. Being sober was the scariest thing I could imagine. For those three weeks, I lived like an alcoholic, drinking every night until I had to go home and pass out. I had horrible headaches, ate like a maniac and craved crystal to the point where I would have killed someone to get some. Seriously. I walked around ready to snap on anyone who got in my way, and before I did crystal I was NOT an angry person. I'd been the kind of person who people said was 'too nice' all the time. Now I had fallings-out with a couple of my friends, incidentally, both people who didn't do hard drugs. My friends who did were no problem, we all understood one another.

I remember giving a line of crystal to my one friend P., who had never done it before, although she was 10 years older than me and had done everything else in the book. We were outside a carpet warehouse, where she wanted to look at carpet for her new house. We did a line, although she was nervous about doing meth, and looked at carpets. It was fucked up, nothing had every been more fun than shopping for carpet. After that, she asked me to get her some every week or so.

My dealer finally reappeared just before new years' 2003, and that was when my use of crystal really got out of hand. Before, he was across the city, with a lot of customers, and our relationship was a lot more casual. For some reason, I now became one of this guy's best customers. He would call me if he got especially good stuff in, give me free samples and deals, deliver it to my work or my apartment. If I didn't call him, he's call me. He also started hitting on me - we'd do a line or two when he brought it over, and he'd ask to sleep with me. Or ask me to meet up with him later to hang out. I never did, because I didn't want to become one of those jib fiends who can't hold down a job and look like drug addicts. But being able to get it wherever and whenever I wanted definitely was a factor in things. I did about half a gram a day for the next five or six months, until he disappeared again.

I detoxed horribly for two weeks, doing coke heavily during that time, until I found a new dealer and got right back into it. This past summer, the summer of 2004, I basically never slept. I was working at a job I didn't like much, as somewhere in the hazy weeks of April or May I'd quit the excellent job I'd held for the past three and a half years. I can't blame that completely on crystal, but I know that before I did it I never had problems with my bosses or my attendance. And I mostly hung out with friends who either did crystal with me, or knew I did it and didn't care. My best friend of years and years didn't get it, and so I saw her less. My parents lived far away, and I freaked out on them over the phone often enough that they thought I was 'unstable'. All in all, I started realizing that as much as I never wanted to stop putting crystal up my nose, I was going to have to, or be addicted to it for the rest of my life.

So this past September I moved 1000 miles away from the city I'd been living in. I enrolled in university again, and cut out all drugs except pot. I didn't know where to get crystal in the new city, and didn't try to find it. I suffered horrible depression, horrible paranoia. Crystal had burned out so much of my former personality that I thought I didn't have one anymore. I couldn't stand talking to people sober, or really being sober at all. I didn't know how to make friends without the aid of being high. Slowly it got better, but I'm still not 100% ok, and it's been months. This underlines for me just how vastly some drugs can change one's mind. I've got friends who can't stop smoking crack, friends who can't go a day without drinking half a bottle of scotch: everyone has a substance that just does it for them, but it sucks to know that you're not in the drivers seat anymore. I'm not that drawn to coke or alcohol, but meth and I have a fatal attraction. From the first time I did it, it was like finding God. And now I know that as good as it feels, it isn't good at all. I know if I were to do it again, it would be exactly the same, and I wouldn't be able to control it. For that reason, I can't even look at crystal meth ever again, which sucks, because it feels like I've lost a great friend. And how fucked up is that?

Exp Year: 1999ExpID: 40390
Gender: Female 
Age at time of experience: Not Given
Published: Apr 30, 2008Views: 23,994
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Methamphetamine (37) : Addiction & Habituation (10), Post Trip Problems (8), Retrospective / Summary (11), Not Applicable (38)

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