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Letters from Crystal Meth Users

  • Jan

    Crank User No More

    I stumbled onto your site by accident this evening. I am a 22 year veteran of Alcoholics Anonymous. Thirty four years ago, at age 17, I got involved with the wrong guy. For the next four years I mainlined almost pure crystal meth as many times a day as I could get it. Pure crystal meth amphetamine is a powerful destroyer of human spirit. I would pass out from overdose, wake up and shoot up again. I was so sick in every sense of the word.

    I started as a professional dancer in the bars and ended up selling myself for the money to get my high. In the process, I caused serious brain damage. (The really tough part of this was that my IQ in the 3rd grade when tested, was 137, and my reading comprehension was at first year college level.) At the time, I didn't know what was wrong. I just knew something was horribly wrong with me. I lived with total paranoia, panic of everything and everyone, and was so far gone emotionally, psychologically and intellectually that I did not think I could ever be normal again. I ended up in prison and was tested for IQ at the age of 23. It was now in the range of 102-105. That was pretty low for me.

    For many years, I was not normal. I tried to act the part but couldn't pull it off. I tried to kill myself many times because I just didn't know how to deal with the fear. It never left me. Ever! I had no hope. For some reason I was saved each time I tried to die. Today I thank God that I'm still here. Eventually I was convinced by a friend of mine to go into a drug -alcohol rehab hospital for a 28 day program. I was by that time 30 years old and had been trying to work as a bar tender. I was such a mess it just wasn't possible for me to handle anything. By the time I went in for rehab, I was on anti-depressants/anxiety pills for 3 years. I became exactly what the pills were supposed to curb each time I took one. Depressed and anxious all of the time.

    The hospital staff was all made up of ex drug and alcohol users. Nurses, aides, counselors, etc. I learned there the problem I had been partially from trauma to my brain due to my drug and alcohol abuse. I learned about Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous and was encouraged to get involved in both. I did not like NA as it was too unstable of an environment. I stayed with AA and with the help of their 12 step program and the knowledge I learned thru the rehab center, I started little by little changing things in my life for the positive. I got a job in a factory for a while but just didn't like it. I went to a cleaners and applied for front counter work and worked there 30 hrs. a week for about 1 1/2 yrs. I then went thru BVR (bureau of vocational rehab) and they paid for my college for the next 2 years. I then got a job as a photographer and started to make decent money for fewer hours while I went to college.

    Eventually, I quit smoking because my health was so very poor from the 4 years of serious abuse of drugs. I then got into jogging to try to alleviate my fears that I still lived with constantly. It was not an easy time for me, but I persevered and little by little as I replaced a negative habit with a positive one, I started to like myself. Over the course of time, I read a lot of self-help books, took a lot of psych courses in college, had undergone counseling for a year, and never ran with losers again. I learned about vitamins and eating healthy and how they help the body to heal. I started making my meals from scratch as I learned how processed foods were actually making me more ill. I decided that I wanted what normal people had and the only way to get that was to be around it to learn what it was. It worked!

    Today I am a happy, well adjusted, human being that is capable of living life on its terms. I have self-esteem, I have a good outlook on life and I believe I am here today because I have something to add to the world. What a far cry that is from 34 years ago. Today I have something I didn't have back 22 years ago when I first entered the rehab center. Today, I have hope. I have a belief in myself that I can accomplish whatever I set my mind to, because one day at a time with one foot in front of the other, one positive replacing one negative at a time over the last 22 years, has proven to myself that I did and can do it. That is what gives you self-esteem and confidence. I still get scared and nervous today to try something new, but the difference is that I will take the time to work through it and do it eventually anyhow.

    Anyone can do what I have done. I don't care how bad off you think you are. If you have the desire and are willing to go to any length to become one with yourself and the universe, you can do it. My gift to you is HOPE. Please take it to heart.


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