Breaking the Stigma: Honor Roll Heroin Addict

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/erin-bahadur/breaking-the-stigma-honor_b_6556672.html

On my website, you will see stories about patients that can be amazing, like this one.  But most of the stories are just plain tragic — this is war, after all.  It’s a sad irony that the drug war, meant to protect us against drugs, has caused more tragedies than positive stories like this…

I just have to say, though, that if this woman had been any other color besides white, her story would have been very different.

And I’m very confused about why she started using drugs.  Was she self-medicating?  Was it to please her boyfriend?  Did she start partying because she wanted to be popular?

The first time I smoked pot, nothing happened. The second time I smoked pot, my anxiety went away. The third time I smoked pot, I started asking what else there was for me to use. We didn’t break up. I had stumbled upon an instant connection to marijuana, and that connection opened up the world. Soon I was drinking every night and supplementing my alcohol and marijuana use with ecstasy, cocaine, hallucinogenic mushrooms, or whatever you had to change the way I felt.

What feelings was she trying to change?  Did she suffer from anxiety before she met her boyfriend?  Or was it her boyfriend that was causing the anxiety?  Did she choose drugs because she didn’t want to leave her boyfriend?

I don’t know, but something appears to be missing in this story.  It almost seems like it was written by SAMHSA or the NIDA.  I think it’s odd that the suicide hotline number isn’t at the bottom of this article, but instead, it’s this:

Need help with substance abuse or mental health issues? In the U.S., call 800-662-HELP (4357) for the SAMHSA National Helpline.

I didn’t learn very much from this story, except that this is one drug addict who had an amazing recovery.  I’m just wondering… If she never addressed what started the apparently wild swing in her behavior, what did she really learn from the experience?  And finally, is she blaming marijuana as a “gateway” drug?  Sure sounds like it to me.

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