I started using when I was about 12 – 13 but it wasn’t really serious then and it started with small things like pot progreessing to something worse. I was offered other drugs like opiates and tablets and now I’m 18. I have been using for about six years and it’s gotten really bad where I need it everyday and have to have it, otherwise I get sick and just have to lay in bed all day without moving. If I could change everything back to the way it was before I was using, I’d do it because it’s hard everyday - looking for the money to get it, going on a mission to go find it and just every time I have it now, it just seems pointless and depresses me everyday. I just wish I didn’t do it anymore. Trying to get off it seems really hard and I’ve been starting detox programs and prenamorphine, which is supposed to block opiates and I just can’t stick to them because it’s too hard and I keep going back to the drugs. It’s really horrible and I wish I could change it.
Why do you use drugs?
When I first started using, it was because it was given to me and I didn’t really have to pay for it. I just wanted to know what it was like but then I started using it to block out pain and just escape from everything but now when I do it, it doesn’t really block out any pain at all. To me, it makes pain worse but for other people, they seem to escape reality and be on certain waves lengths and moods for awhile and then they just forget about everything while they’re in that state. For me, I’m just in the same state when I take drugs as when I don’t take them.
How do you buy it?
I use my pay, some of it, not all of it (Centrelink’s Youth Allowance) and if I’ve got $30-$40 spare, then I’ll go get drugs from whoever I can and if I don’t have the money for it, some people that I know will still give it to me or share theirs with me and it’s just really getting it, isn’t that hard but sometimes you just don’t know where to get it from so you’ve just got to keep ringing people all day and then maybe someone will help you out.
What are the drug dealers like?
To me, I don’t think dealers really care about the people who they’re selling to but some of them will actually sit down and talk to you while someone goes and gets it and they will sit there and talk for an hour or two or they’ll have their taste with you and talk about what’s happening in their life and everything but most of them, it’s like they don’t really give a crap anyway but you’re just there giving them your money, they take it, they give you what you want and then you just leave and then you just do the same thing, they don’t really give a crap as long as they get their money.
How can drug dealers be stopped?
I don’t think we can. They’re just always there and there’s no real way to stop them and some can get arrested, their drugs can get taken and then they’ll get locked up but when they get out, they just restart all over again. It’s like they’ll always be there.
How can you tell if your shot’s going to be bad?
You can’t really. You just have to take all the safety and precautions to make it so you know it’s going to be an alright taste and really the only way you know if it’s going to be a bad one, you’ve got to have it and once you have it and it’s a bad taste, then you’ll know because you’ll be sick and you can’t move and you probably have to end up in hospital but the best way not to have a bad taste is to take all the safety precautions really to like make sure you’re doing all the right things.
How else can you get sick if the shot’s bad?
It’s best to always use a filter when you do it. Many people when they get it, they don’t really want to go through the fuss of doing it safely and they’ll just get it, add the water to it and have their shot. But it’s always better to use a filter and take your time doing it otherwise you know it’s going to stuff up. But most people just hurry into getting it ready and having it and they’re the ones who get sick and it’s the ones who do everything right, who don’t usually get sick. If it’s mixed, a lot of dealers usually cut it up with other stuff like Epsom Salts and stuff like that.
Sometimes it can make you really sick but sometimes it doesn’t make you sick. It depends on what they’ve cut it with and how much they’ve put with it and if it’s going to be bad, you don’t really know until once you’ve had it and then you’re just crook for the rest of the day, maybe a couple of weeks and you have to end up in hospital but then eventually you’ll feel better again. Some people think that they’re sick because they’re drug was good and then they’ll go out and buy more and just get more sick by having more, thinking they didn’t have enough the first time and then that’s a really bad thing to do because then they’ve got more chance to overdose and that’s the bad thing to do about it. With Speed, they just usually mix that up with Epsom Salts and Bi Carb Soda and with Heroin they can put yeast in it. It depends on the dealer. They can go to their kitchen cupboard and find some sort of powdery substance that they think will mix well with it that people won’t notice and they’ll just grab it and chuck a small amount in it. It depends on how much money they want to make. They could put a big amount and it’s really bad for users really because that way they don’t really know what they’re getting or how much they’re getting, how pure or anything like that.
How can you stop people from ODing?
Well no one can really stop them from ODing because it’s really the dealer who’s going to cut it with anything and maybe if people don’t OD from the gear being cut with anything, then they’re going to the amount of gear that they’re having. If they think it’s good, then they’re going to go back and get more and then more. Then they’ll have too much and then they’ll just drop and they could be in a place by themselves and no one’s going to know that they’re there until someone has noticed that they’re not around for awhile and then they’ll go there and find them and it’ll be too late. The last thing that goes through their mind would probably that they’ve had a bad life and been treated like crap. I don’t think they’d be thinking about life that much, probably just thinking about getting a large amount of gear to OD and they’ll just do it and they wouldn’t think about it. They’re probably just think it’s going to be a good shot but then at that moment, they’re thinking they want to get wasted from it but then they forget the reason they got it, was to kill themselves and they’re going to have a large amount. As soon as they have it, they’ll feel it and die slowly and they’ll sort of feel painful and it’s a bad way to go.
What can the community do?
There’s programs and detoxing that users can go to help get off it but then most users will go through the detox program and then they’ll leave, start using again and go back to stop and it’s a repeating the process again over and over again. The person has to really want to stop and believe that they can enough not to want to repeat the process of repeating it all. Even if a person really wants to, it does take a lot of time and just having friends and people who care and want to help around them, is a big help because they feel like they’re not going through it alone and at least they’ve got the help there. Most places where they have needle exchanges, the people who run it are users or ex users themselves and they’re there and they offer they’re help and support for users. They’re there now and they’ll probably be there for awhile but it’s like all their support and programs that are in the community right now, it’s like the users know they’re there and they go there to get their needles and everything else they need for their shot but it’s like, some people go to them for help and they’ll get the help but it’s like they don’t really want the help anyway. Probably more help in the community with offices opening with programs and everything to me, is a waste of money because they’re already there and people are just abusing it really. Not all users but some users by saying they want help with it and then they get there and get the help they need, they just leave. The next time they go there, they want help with something else and it’s just a process that keeps going on like that and it’s a waste of money for the government because they’re just going to be used over and over again but there is people that really want to stop using that actually do go through it, so knowing that they’re still going to be there is help to them for now.
What can parents do to help?
Probably the biggest thing is just being there for their kids and knowing that letting them know that they care and want to help and that they’re through this time with their children and letting them know each day that they love them and they are willing to help them in anyway they can. If they have to go with them to programs and offices to see workers and pretty much being there by their side through it all.
What can the police do to help?
They probably can give them a break if the police didn’t hassle them out so much because anyone who’s walking down the street who’s dressed daggy or anything like that, the police usually pull up and think they’re users and then they’ll just get pulled into an alleyway somewhere and get searched, some get strip searched and it gives the police a bad name and other users a bad name and other users a bad name because the person they’ve just pulled over, isn’t a user and maybe is just a person who wants to wear daggy clothes and it’s like they’re judging that person with how they look, it’s like don’t judge a book by it’s cover so they could give themselves a break and ourselves a break by not doing that. I don’t think the police can help users stop taking drugs in anyway. If a person is imprisoned and they’re a regular user, the police and the prison system could help by getting them onto a medication program for their time in imprisonment so while they are in prison, they’re not withdrawing every day for a period of two weeks where they’re just sick and sweating, in bed all day everyday instead of doing that. So if they do that, being on the program would help them get off the drugs they are in and when they get out, it would be good because they can start a new life without drugs, so that’s probably a way they can help.
Is it fair to imprison drug users?
Well if they’ve done the wrong thing, then I suppose it’s only fair but then again, then there’s other people out on the street who’ve bad things that aren’t users and the police should be out getting them and putting them in prison. Whereas if they put a drug user in prison for driving without a license or something like that, they should really be thinking before they do that and maybe putting them into a rehabilitation centre before doing that so there’s room in prison for people who are actually doing the wrong things.