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Old 02-16-2005, 06:48 AM   #1
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fighting crystal meth

we have a new crack in America.

the real culprit behind the slight rise in STDs and HIV infections in gay male culture right now is the use of crystal meth. the drug has rampaged through rural America as well. in general, i'm cautiously libertarian when it comes to recreational drug use (pot, mild hallucinogenics, alcohol ... heroin and cocaine are different stories). but i will come out as a raging conservitive when it comes to this particular drug. it's potent beyond belief, and if we don't get a grip on it, it may undo all the progress we have made against HIV in the gay world.

funding advertizing or ask health authorities to help (although necessary) isn't nearly enough. we must insist on zero tolerance of this drug among our friends and loved ones out of love and concern for one another, and we must encourage every addict to get treatment. to the gay men out there: we have risen to the occasion before and we can do so again. not by stigmatizing, blaming or ostracizing. but by confronting, persuading, begging one another to overcome this menace.

here's one resource: http://www.lifeormeth.com/
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Old 02-16-2005, 07:24 AM   #2
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This scares me, this new strain of HIV. I'm conservative about drugs and always have been, but I can understand what could drive gay people to this form of escape, as much as it's possible for me to understand. I agree w/ zero tolerance in light of this new strain.

I truly hope something can be done to stop this.
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Old 02-16-2005, 07:38 AM   #3
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I hate drugs. I even want to ban tobacco products.

Alcohol? I'm kind to it. Unlike tobacco or any other illegal drug, alcohol is harmless, if it isn't abused. I can't say the same about tobacco. It's harmful even in "small" amounts (and, due to it's addictive nature, I don't know anyone who uses tobacco in "small" amounts).

Truthfully, none of my friends are drug addicts, so I have no one to confront. But I am very hardline against it, so if my friends did, they would get an earful from me.

(And those who know me, know that I would.)

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Old 02-16-2005, 08:03 AM   #4
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Use of this harmful drug is a sad reality. I hope that those who want to escape reality will find ways that are not self-destructive and dangerous.
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Old 02-16-2005, 08:04 AM   #5
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You are right when you say we need zero tolerance of this drug Irvine. My family has been ravaged beyond belief by meth, starting way back in the late 80's.

There is no such thing as a recreational meth user (luckily my experimentation period with it was brief) and the downfall is swift and complete. I have seen people lose their jobs, kids, homes, cars, possesions, friends and at some point, their sanity. And even if you are one of the lucky few who manages to quit, the physical and mental damage can take years to reverse, if it ever does. I know people who have permanent tics, can't focus long enough to hold down even a menial job, talk to themselves...its beyond sad.

The success rate for users who try to quit is not encouraging. Someone I love very much was clean for 6 years and in the span of one short relapse, lost her home, car, job and went to prison for a year.

The signs of meth use are easy to spot...if you think someone you know is using it, they are. Get to them before they are too far gone, if you can. In the end, the user has to want help but if they know they have a support system when the times comes, they're more likely to follow through.
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Old 02-16-2005, 08:50 AM   #6
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i was addicted to meth for over a year when i was younger. i'm talking, wake up and look for it addicted. i gave away nearly everything i owned for meth. it wasn't until i ended up in the hospital that i realized what i had become. the doctors said if i had done any more that night, my heart would have stopped. that evil shit nearly killed me. looking back, i cannot believe the life i was living. it's still difficult for me to watch film scenes where people are snorting. i have to look away, because i can still feel that rush.

when i quit, it was insanely tough. i had to actually move away from the town where my "friends" who were still using lived. i changed my phone number. i cut off all contact completely. i now know that most of them went nowhere. one of them spent many years in jail, and one of them died. (he had a long history of meth abuse, had a seizure while swimming and drowned.)

meth is pure evil. zero tolerance indeed. if i ever found out my child had ingested that vile substance, i don't know what i would do. i would probably put a pile of dog shit in front of her and tell her to snort that, because it's the same thing.

drug abuse is such a tragedy. i am compassionate, but i am also angry.

my heart goes out to those who are still addicted.
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Old 02-16-2005, 08:54 AM   #7
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I am happy to hear about your recovery. I obviously wasn't there to witness it, but it seems like a very tough addiction to beat.
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Old 02-16-2005, 09:03 AM   #8
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I've seen crystal meth make a total wreck out of people myself. I hope this stuff can be stopped.
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Old 02-16-2005, 09:06 AM   #9
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I don't know much about this particular drug.
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Old 02-16-2005, 09:06 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by bonosgirl84


when i quit, it was insanely tough. i had to actually move away from the town where my "friends" who were still using lived. i changed my phone number. i cut off all contact completely.
I am convinced that this is the only way to quit and stay clean for good. I have seen SO many people quit for a few months and think they can hang out in the same places with the same people and stay clean. Its just not possible.

My sister stayed clean for 6 years and thought we (her family) were idiots for suggesting that she find a new group of friends once her old friends started coming home from prison. Her reasoning was that they would all be on parole and couldn't use. Right. Within a month of her son's father getting out she started snorting on weekends, in 6 months she was shooting up and dealing. She was finally arrrested after an undercover sting and the police found a huge bag of meth, heroin and syringes packaged for sales under the hood of her car. She did a year in prison and has been home for 2 months and everytime I see her now, I'm looking for signs that she's slipped again. I hate it but its really hard to trust again after someone was clean for so long.

I do have compassion but yeah, it does piss you off when you see people throw their lives away and even worse, destroy the lives of their children and families.

Thank God things turned out better for you bg
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Old 02-16-2005, 09:06 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by bonosgirl84
i was addicted to meth for over a year when i was younger. i'm talking, wake up and look for it addicted. i gave away nearly everything i owned for meth. it wasn't until i ended up in the hospital that i realized what i had become. the doctors said if i had done any more that night, my heart would have stopped.



i remember you told me this a while back. i for one am really happy that you are here alive to tell about your experiences. gah...i love you and im so glad your here
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Old 02-16-2005, 09:11 AM   #12
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I know a fair bit about amphetamine (speed) as I took it for a few months when I was younger (big, big, mistake). Since then I haven't touched anything like that.
Well done to anyone who's come off that shit.

As I don't know much about crystal meth, would someone be able to tell me the difference between methamphetamine and amphetatmine? Pardon my ignorance. Or is it exactly the same thing?
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Old 02-16-2005, 09:40 AM   #13
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A friend died from it a year ago, and another one is in rehab right now. He has a good chance of recovery, I think, because he checked himself in and really wants to be free of it, which wasn't true for him a year ago. He's doing great but knows he has a long road ahead of him.
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Old 02-16-2005, 09:46 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by melon

I can't say the same about tobacco. It's harmful even in "small" amounts (and, due to it's addictive nature, I don't know anyone who uses tobacco in "small" amounts).
I actually know a lot of people who use tobacco in small amounts. They smoke socially and aren't addicted. I can do that myself. Tobacco has a relaxing effect on me and though it's a disgusting habit, there have been occasions where I was really stressed out and smoking a cigarette in my backyard had a calming effect. But I am fortunate not to have any addictive tendencies. Compulsive, yes-- addictive, no. Last fall during a very stressful period where I moved and lost two of the most important people in my life, I spent about two months smoking on average 2 American Spirit cigarettes a day. Then I was done with it. I guess some people thought it was stupid but it helped me get through a rough time. I had no withdrawal, neither physical nor psychological. But I'm aware that's unusual.
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Old 02-16-2005, 09:57 AM   #15
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guys -- this is amazing. thank you for sharing all your thoughts, feelings, experiences, and gained wisdom.

i can't think of a more compelling way to get people to say no.

the battle against meth begins in places like this.
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