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An acquaintance of mine was busted for possession of heroin a few months ago. He's basically a good person, but his family is very fucked up. This shit is basically impossible to kick permanently, isn't it?

I don't know a lot of the details, but he is in an outpatient psychotherapy program and seems to be making progress. I guess he's clean for the moment but I don't know if he went through some kind of detox or rehab program.

Does he have a chance?

by Anonymousreply 3211/24/2012

I don't know just where I'm going

But I'm gonna try for the kingdom, if I can

'Cause it makes me feel like I'm a man

When I put a spike into my vein

And I'll tell ya, things aren't quite the same

When I'm rushing on my run

And I feel just like Jesus' son

And I guess that I just don't know

And I guess that I just don't know

I have made the big decision

I'm gonna try to nullify my life

'Cause when the blood begins to flow

When it shoots up the dropper's neck

When I'm closing in on death

And you can't help me now, you guys

You can all go take a walk

And I guess that I just don't know

And I guess that I just don't know

I wish that I was born a thousand years ago

I wish that I'd sail the darkened seas

On a great big clipper ship

Going from this land here to that

In a sailor's suit and cap

Away from the big city

Where a man can not be free

Of all of the evils of this town

And of himself, and those around

Oh, and I guess that I just don't know

Oh, and I guess that I just don't know

Heroin, be the death of me

Heroin, it's my wife and it's my life

Because a mainer to my vein

Leads to a center in my head

And then I'm better off and dead

Because when the smack begins to flow

I really don't care anymore

About all the Jim-Jim's in this town

And all the politicians makin' crazy sounds

And everybody puttin' everybody else down

And all the dead bodies piled up in mounds

'Cause when the smack begins to flow

Then I really don't care anymore

Ah, when the heroin is in my blood

And that blood is in my head

Then thank God that I'm as good as dead

Then thank your God that I'm not aware

And thank God that I just don't care

And I guess I just don't know

And I guess I just don't know

by Anonymousreply 111/06/2012

look up Ibogaine

by Anonymousreply 211/06/2012

Different people have different experiences. My best friend was a heroin addict as a teenager. Managed to get clean, get an education and become a teacher. He was successful in part because he moved to outer Slobovia. Around 30 he became acquainted with someone having connections and he was soon a daily addict. He went to Sierra Tucson, one of the best. Stayed about 6 weeks. After discharge he made it about 6 hours before shooting up. He has now been off Heroin for close to 20 years. SORT of off heroin as he takes methadone daily. Every Saturday he travels about 70 miles to urine test and get his weeks doses of methadone. He still teaches school and is one heck of a good school teacher.

by Anonymousreply 311/06/2012

Opiate addiction seems really tough to get over. And addicts lie, so people often claim to be clean when they're not.

I had demerol a long time ago for kidney stones and can see how someone could easily get hooked on opiates. You feel all warm and fuzzy and nothing bothers you. Until it starts to wear off, then it's all you can think about.

by Anonymousreply 411/06/2012

Sometimes people are off and on, like booze. Heroin is very hard to give up but some people do it successfully.

by Anonymousreply 511/06/2012

Detoxed myself using suboxone - clean about 5 years now.

by Anonymousreply 611/06/2012

My experience with heroin addicts:

1 Its VERY hard to quit. Most need to try several times before they are successful and even then they confess that hardly a day goes by that they are not tempted to pick it back up.

2 No one just "dabbles" in it. You are either full blown into doing it, or you are not.

3 Take the worst personality traits an addict can have, then multiply it by 100. Heroin junkies are needy, self entitled, irresponsible, constantly play themselves as victims and refuse to be held accountable for their actions. They somehow think that because they have this affliction, all their horrible behavior should be excused. I cant tell you how many times I have heard one of them whine, "You dont understand what its like for someone like me." And they are right, I dont understand, but that doesn't mean I should tolerate their bullshit.

4 They will steal, cheat and lie as easily as they breathe out and breathe in. They are never honest about their addiction, how it started or how much they use. NEVER trust a junkie.

5 Some do get clean, but traces of the personality traits listed above still linger. While they may be off heroin, they will often still rely on some other substance to get through the day to day.

6 It doesn't matter what their background is, the results are the same. One junkie I know is a relatively famous person and he is just as bad as the junkie who is a nobody. In fact, he is probably worse because he has double the self entitlement ("I'm a junkie AND a movie star!")

Again, this is my own experience, everyone is different I suppose. It is possible OP that one day your friend could get clean. And its possible that one day Pamela Anderson could win an Oscar.

by Anonymousreply 711/06/2012

I never had any exposure to heroin addicts until I owned a retail business and, unsuspecting, hired a few. All of what R7 says is true. I can also add that they tend to become very indignant and OTT self righteous in defending themselves when called out on their bad behavior. They genuinely seem confused and incredulous as to why you would want to fire them for not showing up for work, falling asleep on the job while standing up, or for stealing. They simply refuse to accept any responsibility. When they get fired (usually for stealing--they all do it eventually) they often start screaming and yelling in a rage. Then they beg--- "You can't doooooo this to meeeeeee. I neeeeed this job." Always the victim, never to blame.

by Anonymousreply 811/06/2012

The problem is that heroin, over time, builds up receptors in the brain that redirect the brain to focus on just getting high. I have represented many heroin addicts. I have an uncle who is 65 and still an addict of sorts. Once the biology of heroin has taken whole- the body is at its mercy.

by Anonymousreply 911/06/2012

But wouldn't the fact that this guy is in a program negate the notion that none of them ever take responsibility for anything?

by Anonymousreply 1011/06/2012

R10 They ALL claim to be going through some program, many times. It doesn't change anything. Besides, OP is probably assuming his friend is in a program because that's what he was told. Ten to one, the friend is not really in a program, or is exaggerating what the program is for. He may say he is going through a program when in fact its just him meeting with a parole officer.

by Anonymousreply 1111/06/2012

Basically the OP needs to stop using "basically."

As for heroin, I have worked in substance abuse research for 25 years, and it is harder to quit and stay quit with tobacco addiction than it is to quit heroin.

Just don't try to do it on your own, denying the complexity and motives for use in the first place.

by Anonymousreply 1211/06/2012

I wonder if it's harder to diet than to kick heroin, since 95% of all diets fail. People always gain back the weight. Plus, you can't go cold turkey on your "drug" of choice since you have to eat.

by Anonymousreply 1311/06/2012

R11, I know for a fact he is in this program, and I know exactly what the program is.

Thanks for a dose of sanity, R12, in spite of your cunty first sentence. :o)

by Anonymousreply 1411/06/2012

I totally agree with R12. I was addicted to opium, heroin, alcohol and tobacco in the past and I've been clean off all drugs for a very long time.

Tobacco and alcohol were the toughest drugs I ever kicked, partly because of ready availability. Tobacco is the hardest drug for most people to quit.

R7 has built quite a fantasy about addicts, but the truth is that addicts are as different from one another as non-drug users. I should know, I've spent many thousands of hours with addicts, both clean and using.

R8, your employees' attitudes sound like other groups of people too. We've recently had many problems with young people in my workplace and they have all of the characteristics you describe.

by Anonymousreply 1511/06/2012

It has been proven that nicotine, particularly in cigarette form, is the hardest drug to quit out of all of them.

by Anonymousreply 1611/06/2012

I'm going to jump to what I think your real question is, "Should I get into a relationship with this guy?" NO NO and NO It will ruin your life. I'm not saying you'll become an addict yourself although you very well may but it will control the life of that guy and by association you too. If you're already in a relationship with him get out and save yourself. And for God's sake don't listen to the advice of people here who claim to know it's easier to kick than cigarettes. I believe you're only looking for someone to tell you what you want to hear. Don't do that to yourself.

by Anonymousreply 1711/06/2012

No. He is going to die

by Anonymousreply 1811/06/2012

No problemo. You just quit and Voila!

by Anonymousreply 1911/06/2012

R7, you certainly have a chip on your shoulder... Would you like it if I painted all gay men with the same brush?

I got hooked on heroin when I was stationed in Germany in the late 70's. And I did know people who shot heroin every now and then, so it IS possible. I shot heroin every couple of days, and on the days I didn't shoot it, I used other drugs, because I didn't want to be a heroin addict. But I was high all the time on something, always.

I got clean over 30 years ago. I then went to college and eventually became a professor. My drug and alcohol days are far behind me; in fact, people don't even believe me when I tell them that I used to be an addict.

But I must agree with R15 -- it was harder for me to quit smoking than it was to quit shooting dope.

To make a long story short, there IS hope for your friend, OP. If I can do it, anybody can.

by Anonymousreply 2011/06/2012

My husband successfully got off heroin 16 years ago. He has never relapsed and is not on methadone.

by Anonymousreply 2111/06/2012

I now know that I can't smoke one stick of pot! I can't take one snort of horse! I can't take one needle of cocaine because I am an addictive personality! And that's all I need is one of anything. Ya know I need one dress. If I happen to like this dress in tan, I buy the same dress in green and black and pink. This is the type of personality I am!

by Anonymousreply 2211/06/2012

The successful ex-heroin users I've known went into their own unsponsored witness relocation programs.

They were the ones willing to start fresh. For early recoverers, location seems to doom many. They move back to families, wives, friends, or jobs where it's still available. Anyone is bound to experience extreme boredom in recovery. Moving back to the playground just stacks the odds against them.

Also, this is an addiction withdrawal that seems to hurt physically. I've seen a few who looked like they were levitating off their beds because of muscle problems.

Last but not least, PAWS seem to stick around longer than the usual eighteen months.

As a graduate of many inpatient programs, I've found most heroin addicts to be beautiful people -toothless and scabby, but still beautiful to be around. Oh, and every one of them dresses like Starsky, Hutch, or Kobain.

by Anonymousreply 2311/06/2012

That's what I did, R23.

During a relapse, I ended up in a city where I didn't know anyone, several states away from family and friends. That's what it took for me, to be away from family craziness and drug-using friends. I never went home, although it created resentment and some in my family have never forgiven me. When I was gone, they no longer had me to blame for their problems, poor babies. I thrived away from from family and friends and created a new life for myself. I have been clean ever since.

by Anonymousreply 2411/06/2012

r20, from what you've heard, do you think heroin has changed since the 70s? Someone said it's purer and more 'jacked up' now so harder to quit if you do get addicted.

by Anonymousreply 2511/06/2012

I was in a six-year relationship with a heroin addict, and I had no fucking clue! Of course, looking back, all the signs were there, but I was very naive when it came to heroin addiction. And this guy was also diabetic, so it wasn't uncommon to see needles around the house. And whenever he was high and acting fucked up, he would always blame it on problems with his "blood sugar". I didn't know.

Turns out his whole family were addicts. His mother was the one who turned him on to it! First his sister OD'ed, then his father-in-law, then his mother. And two years after I cut him loose, he was dead too.

by Anonymousreply 2611/06/2012

I am in recovery from heroin addiction for the last 9 years. I only got clean by state mandate (jail). I bailed on many rehabs before I had no choice but to stay. Like mentioned above, the key to my getting clean was totally leaving my old environment. All of my old friends are dead.

by Anonymousreply 2711/06/2012

Like Phillip K. Dick?

by Anonymousreply 2811/24/2012

According to Dr Drew (I've been listening to old episodes of Loveline from the late 1990's recently), heroin does comparatively little-to-no damage to brain chemistry when compared to other hardcore addictive drugs (such as crystal meth, LSD, PCP), and you can quit it cold turkey without fear of withdrawal complications (like you'd have if you were a serious alcoholic and tried to quit cold turkey), and the withdrawal symptoms themselves from quitting heroin are hellish but only last about 3 days. He also said that it's impossible to quit on your own because you'll just fall right back into the lifestyle again: you need to commit to an intensive rehab program for at least a month, get a sponsor, etc.

He also said that methadone FUCKS YOU UP worse than heroin ever could, that it's extremely addictive, that virtually all methadone users also use heroin, and that if you enter a rehab program to quit the methadone, the withdrawal symptoms last for at least a month (it's much harder to quit than heroin). So if you know any heroin addicts who say they're using methadone, RUN like hell in the other direction.

The most surefire way to quit heroin is to move to a totally new location and enter an intensive rehab program - and do not move home again. Those who move are very likely to successfully quit the drug; those who don't are very likely to struggle with addiction indefinitely.

If you start using in your teens or early 20s and haven't quit by the time you hit 30, you'll never quit and be dead by 50.

by Anonymousreply 2911/24/2012

Smoking is much much worse and harder to kick.

by Anonymousreply 3011/24/2012

R25, I did my dope in Germany, where the heroin came straight from Turkey -- so you do the math.

by Anonymousreply 3111/24/2012

I had a family member on methadone for many years who finally od'd. Methadone users combine it with benzos like xanax for a heroin like high. They will usually tell you they're using it to treat pain. God help you if you're around them when they're withdrawing on methadone or benzos. They usually booze very heavy to get through those periods.

by Anonymousreply 3211/24/2012
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