I Miss You Heroin

I MISS YOU, HEROIN
by laura lang

If you think junkies have a ferocious hunger for heroin, consider spending every single day pretending not to be a junky. It’s incredible work. You see, junkies live outside the law; they need heroin, period. A functional addict needs heroin more. A functional addict doesn’t rob and pillage for heroin because there is a risk of being caught, and if you are caught you don’t get a reduction cure, you get sick and are then forced to quit. So instead the functional addict gets up every morning and goes to work. They work overtime. A functional addict operates the same way as a junky in regards to needing heroin. The difference is that a functional addict has the ability to wait.

For a functional addict time is something that isn’t shown on a clock. Before I quit heroin two years ago, I got up twenty minutes earlier than I do now. I never needed an alarm clock because I knew that it was time for a shot. I never hit snooze and I was never, ever, late for work. I would open my eyes and be in the bathroom fifteen seconds later. I went to work until lunchtime, when I would speed home for a midday shot. That shot would send me reeling, and I would head back to work to make another half days worth of pay so I could buy more junk that night. When I was at work, much like anyone else, I would look at the clock and count the minutes. But as a heroin addict, not only does time slow down, time stops if you need a shot. Working in a world where heroin is generally considered bad stuff is a bit tricky; you can’t exactly be high.

A functional addict has to have the ability to separate themselves from heroin enough to appear to be completely normal. Hiding my addiction was not very hard because most people have no idea that someone can be a heroin addict and have a job. People don’t recognize heroin addiction in a functional addict. The best way to hide your heroin addiction is to blame your symptoms on something else. A functional addict is a Hollywood film crew rolled into one person. I am an actress, a makeup artist, a director, and an editor. When people noticed I never ate, I acted as if I had an eating disorder. When I had done too much on my lunch break and had to throw up, I blamed my rush to the bathroom on my period or diarrhea or a vaginal problem. I didn’t give a fuck what people thought of my hygiene, as long as they thought it was a physical issue.

As a functional addict you must be very proficient with make up in order to cover track marks. Do you really think Aunt Sally and Cousin Susie aren’t going to notice if you’re wearing long sleeves in the summer heat? Of course people notice that kind of shit. You’d be surprised at how often people see things that are out of place. Being functional means not getting caught and not getting caught can take some creative measures. When people would notice something askew about me, I would change whatever they were noticing. I never had anyone pinpoint what, exactly, was wrong, but people came close. I had to play director in my own life. I had to be able to see myself as other people saw me, and edit out all the things that might jeopardize my supply of heroin. An addiction is a sickness in itself, but being sick because you don’t have whatever you are addicted to is infinitely worse. So I worked at being an addict.

Being a functional addict gave me an entirely different perspective on life. I mean, besides the fact that I didn’t have a savings account, looking into my life you would have thought I was just a girl. I wasn’t just a girl though. I did something everyday that no one ever knew about. Who I was at work and socially was my alter ego. I was pretending to give a shit about life because I needed and wanted my heroin supply to be constant. I was not an addict that surrounded myself with only other addicts; that’s dangerous business because junkies are much more common than functional addicts. In fact, I’ve only ever known one other functional addict. Most of the people I knew and talked to and hung out with had no idea I was addicted to heroin. I faked my entire existence just to maintain my addiction. If I lost my job: no heroin. If my family or friends found out: instant intervention and no heroin. If I didn’t pay my bills: no place to shoot up. Suffice to say that besides paying my bills, all my money went to heroin. I didn’t buy new clothes and I didn’t go to the grocery store. My secret life was flawless, and quitting wasn’t because I couldn’t afford it, or someone forced me.

Whenever I think of heroin, I think of it fondly, but then I’m lucky. I was a functional addict, so I knew when enough was enough. I knew I couldn’t continue shooting heroin forever, and I know now that I can never be addicted again. I’ve seen what heroin can really do to people, and while throughout I’ve been saying it’s possible to be a functional addict, it is not possible to be a functional addict and accomplish anything. In order to be a functional addict forever, you cannot have dreams. You can’t think of a better life. You cannot be successful at the same time. You have to go to your crappy job everyday, and no matter how much you hate it, you can’t quit. You can’t look for a new job because you have to buy junk today. The best you can hope for is moving up within your company. With heroin it’s either all-in or all-out. Whether you are a junky or a functional addict, heroin runs your life. There is no time for anything else.

I hate myself for missing heroin, but I just can’t help it. Every summer I wonder if anyone notices my faded scars, to which I no longer apply makeup. Every morning I think about that purple Crown Royal bag I used to keep my works in. Every afternoon I wonder if Josie has oxycontins, morphine, heroin, or diladid today. I don’t remember every shot of heroin I ever took, but I remember taking a fucking shitload of them. I remember shooting up with a plastic spoon and saliva in the parking lot of a bank. I remember spurting blood all over a hotel room before a Jane’s Addiction concert. I remember using the electrical cord from a curling iron in my moms’ bathroom to tie off. I remember heroin. I remember how fucking great it made me feel. I mean, there were some bad points too, but the bad don’t add up to that one perfect moment; that moment heroin addicts live for.

It’s been two years since I shot up, but there are a million reminders everyday. These little insignificant things that my mind associates with heroin are everywhere. Walgreen’s and I have a very special relationship thanks to their acceptance of my bullshit diabetic card. When I can’t turn left, I always check to see how long the street is, and if it isn’t very long, I go the wrong way, just out of habit. I run red lights even though I’m no longer rushing to buy heroin, and I shake with excitement when I see confederate flag stickers on the back of trucks. I’ve spent more time waiting in front of a 7-11 than you’ve spent riding the subway. With all the time I’ve spent waiting for, chasing after, or shooting in heroin, I could have written twelve books.

I wish I could videotape myself writing this because I am shaking. It’s been two years since I last did heroin, but I know if someone were to walk in with works and a bag, I would have that needle in my arm before you could say HIV. I miss it. Sometimes I wonder how I have gone this long without even dosing once. And I look forward to a time when I can dose again. I even know when that day is, and I am counting down. It’s not until April though, so I have a while to wait. You might ask, “Why would you quit for two years only to take another shot?”

Well the answer is obvious. I miss heroin. I miss the routine. I miss waking up everyday and knowing exactly what I need to do that day. I didn’t even realize how much I missed it until just now. Just now while trying to put into words what I think about when I think about H. Besides, you don’t get addicted in one shot. I figure since I haven’t had one for two years I can have a couple, and be ok. But that’s a saga for another day. Actually I’m pretty interested to find out what it feels like after all this time. I’ll probably puke my guts out.

I’m not going to pretend that heroin is okay — most people who develop a real addiction to heroin never quit. I don’t know the exact statistic, but I know this previous statement is true. I am lucky to have been born with the willpower I have, and as stated previously, I only know of one other functional addict. I’m lucky to remember what I wanted before heroin. And what I want from life is much bigger and better than one small moment of heroin bullshit. But that one small moment of bullshit is something that I can’t get out of my head.

114 thoughts on “I Miss You Heroin

  1. I first ran into this article at the above URL after googling “I miss you”. It was a slow day at work and yeah, I missed her like Ms. Lang missed heroin.

    The article was posted in November of ’04. Ms. Lang said she would try heroin again in April. I’ve always wondered what happened.

    I’m young I’ve lead a charmed life, but I’ve learned his: Some things you will miss the rest of your life if you give them up. Sometimes it is better to miss something that to have it.

    • Wow, I just read your story and I know exactly how you feel. See I too was a functional addict, working a shitty job to pay for my habit. I am still an addict struggling with the addiction, tried rehab a couple times, methadone treatment, subboxen, etc… My will might be strong but heroins is stronger, and I’ve basically been cut dry of it now. My car blew up, out of money, and a job. So I take anything that is an opiate, friends prescriptions, or whatever I can find. Heroin is not just a drug it is a lifestyle. All your hopes and dreams are lost to it and I wish I never would have plagued myself with this disease. It was love at first syringe, well actually sniff because I didn’t shoot until a year and a half into it. I’m 22 now and have nothing been a druggie since I can remember but I realized never truly dependent until I found heroin. That one time is all it took and everything else didn’t matter.

      • Erik, I hear how badly you want to be off of opiates. My son said it was a terrible lifestyle. He woke up and started looking for heroin and felt like he was on an endless ball and chain. Do you have parents that would help pay for Ibogaine treatment? Please, please go to NA or whatever you need to do to stop this. There is a treatment center in Florida that can send their patients to Mexico for Ibogaine treatment. I think it’s called G&G treatment center. My heart really goes out to you. You are loved whether you know it or not. i I don’t know where you live but maybe there is a long term program somewhere. You are so young and have your whole life ahead of you. You are much more than a drug addict—you are someone’s son, cousin, nephew, brother—that is more important than anything in the world.

      • Where to begin? Young man, you do know that you are loved and your mom and dad have bent over backwards and forwards and sideways to help you. Those nights watching and sitting with you as you screamed through the agony of withdrawal was more than any parent should have to endure from one they love so deeply, but they do it out of pure love of you no matter what you’ve done. You are a strong young man with bright eyes and an alluring personality and so much to give to life. It is a sad state of affair that all the state institutional funding has disappeared to nil and no affordable long term care out there. It’s almost like being on a treadmill that never ends. You can beat this thing even as this much time has lapsed. Please be honest with yourself and your mom and dad. That’s all they want is your honesty and your love.

  2. Hi Laura,

    i came across this article from googling “heroin addiction never forget”. I’m also an ex-addict and reading this was like someone was looking into and reading my soul. I’ve been clean 7 years but have rarely stopped thinking about it. I too would work, cover up my tracks, for all intents and purposes live a normal life to most people.

    This article is quite beautiful and expresses the feelings a lot of addicts get in a way i think most can’t describe.

    Did you ever end up tasting again out of interest?

  3. i jus read that and its crazy how much its so true i havent stopped yet and i want to so bad but im scared i will though i jus thought that that was a really good way to put how it feels and how it will feel when i do stop using i will miss it like i would miss my best friend if i neva saw her again

  4. “I miss you heroin.” I read your story a couple of months ago. I actually copied and saved it so i can read it anytime i want.
    Everything you wrote about was a flash from my past. At least in the beginnning. Towards the end of my acting addiction almost everyone knew and i didnt care. I was consumed.

  5. hello, i just would like to say i think this article is amazing. ive been cleen for 2 weeks and i consider my self as an functonal addict you wana no something funny tho. im 15.

      • Alcoholics dont inject.
        Yet they ARE addicted.
        Method of use has NOTHING to do with addiction.

      • I’m going to be prejudice here and say that I doubt the boy/girl is even an addict. By the way he/she types shows that they’re obviously prone to typing like someone who is uneducated to fit in or seem more ‘street’ (who spells clean as ‘cleen’?). I doubt that he’s really had to go through the life that inevitably comes with being an addict; functional or not. So if this person claims that they know he/she didn’t inject, I’m inclined to believe them and I’m also inclined to believe that the person was a child seeking attention and I doubt they’re still using. I would bet that it was a phase, just like his/her horrid spelling.

  6. I got here from googling “bluelight heroin missed shot.” Good article – I have been a functional addict – even graduated college. But it’s time to quit this dirty business. I’m not saying that I won’t do the rest of what I have – I will, and I will use some kind of weak opiates to ween myself off. But this chapter needs to close. Strange, Somehow I feelbetter conveying this to people I don’t know rather than people I do know (who often don’t believe in me).

    Thank you, and good luck

    • This article really grabbed me. It is written so well and speaks as only a heroin addict can speak. My son is 25 and has been a drug abuser since age 14. He started using heroin 2 years ago and on Thanksgiving weekend he used Ibogaine (sp?) to stop the dope sickness and get through the withdrawal. To my knowledge he has not used alcohol or heroin since then and says that the ibogaine has taken away his craving. That being said, my son is an addict. As much as I want to believe that he won’t use again I can ‘hear’ in his voice how much he misses heroin altho he knows intellectually that it has gotten him nowhere. Unfortunately, he does not see that about all the other drugs he uses—ketamine, LSD, pot, etc. Anyhow, I hope Laura has not used again. I wish she would post. I guess the mother in me comes out and I immediatlely wanted to check and see if she is OK. That goes for you others too that want to quit/go back to using whatever. People do care–I care. It not only ruins your precious lives but also the lives of all that love you. Tiss

  7. I too was a functional addict, however, this term bothers me slightly, as absolutely no aspect of my life was ‘functional’ for the entire year I was on Heroin. I never tried smoking or snorting it because I convinced myself I could be the ONE person to have just ONE shot. Clearly, I was kidding myself. Like most, I was the average 22 year old girl- graduated university and landed the dream job. In hindsight, this didn’t help; it was because of my squeeky clean reputation, my habit was given room to grow. If I was ever broke, my parents literally fed my habit. They believed my car tyres needed changing, that I misplaced my bank card, or that I wanted extra cash to buy a new dress for a date on the weekend. I was the ‘angel’ child who couldn’t do wrong, and because of this, they STILL do not know that I was injecting H. If I confessed now, they would laugh at the thought. That’s how ‘functional’ I was. Like Laura, I reached a point where I saw two avenues; a good life or a life of junk. So I quit cold turkey and hung out like an animal in the hope of living like a human again. And like Laura, I miss Heroin everyday and I pray to God that I continue to have the willpower to say no everytime I am reminded of that sweet taste.

  8. …and one more thing for those who asked… i came across a following article written by Laura- about a month after writing “I miss you Heroin” she injected again. THAT says it all.

  9. Shasha, is Laura still using? I’ve wondered so much about her. As much as I would like to believe that my son is not using heroin any longer I am not sure I believe him. He is always high on something, even if it’s not heroin. He loves ketamine, lsd, pot, etc. It’s just another way to stay high. If he lives thru this, I truly think he will live to regret it. I am happy for you Sasha that you have decided to live a good life. Best of luck to you. Tiss

    • Hi Tiss, yes i came across a further article by Laura. She says she had one “last shot” about a month later. That was years ago and apparently she has never done it again. I was disappointed to read that because not a day goes by when I dont consider having “one last shot”. I just hope I can stay strong and refuse the urge… In regards to your son, please do all heroin addicts a favour and stand by him- whether he is clean or not. If you’re having trouble believing he is clean, it probably means he is still using. I came to realise that a mother’s intuition is an amazing, unexplainable power. Your gut instinct is almost ALWAYS right. Like I said, my parents never found out I was on heroin, however the very day that I quit, my mum hugged me and said she felt like “her old daughter was back”. She FELT that without even knowing what I was doing.. Perhaps rehab may be a good idea for your son, however all you can really do is just tell him you love him everyday. When the time is right for HIM, believe me, he will leave heroin behind. I know its frustrating for you but he will NOT stop taking drugs until his heart feels its time to do so. It doesn’t mean he doesn’t love you, and it doesn’t mean he loves heroin more than you- it’s just a matter of time. If you stand by him, he WILL quit before it’s too late… You are in my prayers.

      • Hi Sasha, I am sorry too to hear that Laura used again. My son has been in rehab a couple of times but he was young I had the feeling that he hadn’t hit the bottom yet. I will always stand by my son—always—we are close and yes, mothers DO have ESP when it comes to their children!! I am so very happy that you made the decision to stop. I went thru treatment for alcohol at age 26 and have been sober since ( I am 53 now). Best decision I ever made. However, I think heroin must be different. I never used it (thank GOD) but it seems like heroin users have such a difficult time quitting (but not impossible). I can tell in a nanosecond when my son isn’t using anything. His eyes literally twinkle, he’s hilarious and so very sweet. The drugs change all that and it’s so sad. The laughter went out of him at age 13 and I’ve only seen those “twinkly eyes” sporadically since. I’ve talked to my son about rehab but he’s not interested—not in the least. But, I’ve told him when he’s ready, I’m ready to help and stand by him.

        The saddest thing about reading all this is how many young people are caught up in heroin–mind boggling really. I just hate it for all of you and I am rooting for everybody on this board and anybody else suffering from addiction. You are also in my prayers honey. Please write me any time. Tiss

    • Tiss, I am so disappointed in myself. Not long after I last wrote to you I relapsed. Stupid, I know. Unfortunately, I have used a few times since then. I really thought I had endured the hardest part, but I am starting to realise that this is going to be a struggle for the rest of my life. Like you said, there is something about heroin (unlike any other addiction) that sets it aside from anything else. I plan to stop now, before my body starts to depend on it again. I just wanted to thank you for your time and your thoughts. I hope you and your son are doing ok.

      • Sasha honey, I am glad you are being honest —not for me but for yourself. I think you will get a hold of this addiction and be able to quit completely because you are not fooling yourself. I am so sorry that you have this affliction. What are your options for treatment? Are your parents and/or family and friends supporting you in your quest to fight this addiction? Please, please don’t give up. THere are people who love you and are suffering because YOU are suffering. Please don’t let shame keep you from getting help. You are not alone, please reach out and get any/all help you can. I’m with you all the way.

      • Hi Sasha, Having trouble with this darn website so I’m not sure which of your posts I am responding to–it’s a really old one. Anyhow, you’ve been on my mind and I want to know how everything is going? I hope you are doing well!! X0X0 Tiss

      • I’m great thanks Tiss! My little boy is growing up very fast! Good news. I just bought an apartment for us, so no more playing slave to the landlord!! It may have taken a really long time to get here, but I’m finally where and who I want to be. I am over 3 years clean now… Tell me, how are you? And your son? Thinking of you always xxx

      • Sasha, I wrote you a nice long reply and then spent the whole darn day trying to get my password to work on WordPress. Why do they make it so difficult? So now I cannot find that nice answer to follow up yours. I will write more tomorrow but I want you to know I am so happy you are doing well and getting your own place and that baby is perfect! Btw, I was searching on this site trying to find this blog and came upon the author’s epilogue from 2007– had never seen it before. I asked her if she would mind posting that here in that she had many followers that have wondered about her for years. Will write more tomorrow. Xoxo Tiss

  10. Laura, this story is well written and I believe that opiates re-wire the brain in such a way that it is very hard for a person to ever “feel” normal again. When i quit for a few months, I always end up using again and again, and hating myself for it. It just sucks your life and soul out of you. I wish I had never been introduced to oxys/hydromophone, etc etc\it’s all the same. I’m still trying to be clean after 5 years of being a “functional addict” also. I work, I take care of my family, but I find myself, everyday, to use an opiate just to “feel normal”. Thanks for this raw reality of addiction story. I hope you are still clean, and didn’t take that ‘last shot’, I’m not sure I have that kind of willpower.

    • Hi Jake, Apparently Laura did take a shot again (see Laura’s posts). As you can see, you are not alone in your addiction. I think you are correct in that opiates may change the wiring in the brain but doesn’t it seem that if the brain is ‘re-wired’ in one way that it can get ‘re-wired’ in another way? My son did an Ibogaine treatment which supposedly helps to break the withdrawal from heroin and cut the craving for the opiate. Now, saying that, I can’t tell you that my son has been completely successful but I believe that it helped him at least cut way down and he didn’t use for quite awhile. I don’t live around him so I don’t really know if he’s stoped using or not. I am a recovering alcoholic of many years and I didn’t feel ‘normal’ for a long time. Now, I can’t imagine feeling normal ‘using’. Maybe it is a matter of time—lots of time—which you must fill with other things—positive things. Good relationships, God, whatever works for you in order to give your brain a chance to truly heal.. I am sorry you are dealing with this. What are you doing to help yourself through this? Do you talk to people? Friends? Group? Please do whatever it takes—I am in my mid 50’s and I will tell you life passes fast and it also changes on a dime. This is our chance to live the life we want. Maybe you will always ‘want’ heroin on some level but I think you can get to a point where you aren’t consumed by it. Let others help you. Take care, Tiss

      • Thanks Tiss for the comment, actually, I had forgotten that I had wrote this. I did quit for 4 solid months (which was a miracle) and honestly, I felt terrible during the whole time I quit. I lost my job, and almost all my relationships suffered because of the severe anxiety and zero motivation or interest in anything. I really think that the drugs took that much of a toll on my brain during that 5 years of use. I did relapse and that was a big mistake. I relapsed because I thought that I would feel “normal” again, which did not happen. I think because of all the previous use, that I just cannot feel pleasure anymore. I am going to give it another shot at quitting as I know that drugs are not the answer, I wish that I had never ever started to begin with, it is such a selfish desire and waste of time/money. I hope someone who is thinking about starting to use any kind of hard opiate reads will see that there are long term consequences with using.
        Hope you are doing well Tess, great to know someone reads these comments. I had looked on the ibogane treatment, but the thought of hallucinations really scares me, tell me about what happened to your son, did he ever kick the habit? Jake

  11. Hi Jake,
    So good to hear from you. You made it for 4 months and I congratulate you. You can do this again and maybe this time it will be forever. I understand about the fear about ibogaine hallucinations. That would scare the bejesus out of me but my son really likes being high on any hallucinogenic substance. Thank you for asking about him. I can’t tell you he’s not using because I don’t know for sure. He is coming home in a few weeks (I live 2000 miles from him) and I’ve asked him point blank if he has a habit again which he denies. I am inclined to believe him because I don’t think he would come home if he did. He would have to stay too close to his source. That doesn’t mean however, that he’s straight. But I have very strict boundaries about his drug/ alcohol use when he comes home. Not in my house or around me or I will choose not to be with him. He has been very respectful of this altho I think he’s fooled me a few times. What are you options for getting clean? How did you do it before? Please take care. Tiss

  12. Hi Tiss, if u want to email me sometime, my email is jakeforu2007 at yahoo dot com
    I kind of don’t want to say anything incriminating on these blogs so I can tell you in more detail in an email, but in a nutshell it went like this as far as quitting: I had pretty much tapered down like so many times before and made a commitment that I wasn’t going to use again. I had a list of items I used to make the withdrawal as painless as possible and I also tapered the meds down before I jumped off. I can get through the physical withdrawal fairly well within 5 days. It’s the mental aspect that starts on day 3 and continues afterwards that is the killer. and is what ultimately led me to relapse this time. I am not looking forward to detoxing either, but it is coming up and I have to do it (again). I guess the moral of the story is that most opiate abusers cannot just quit on the first try (just like smoking), but it takes many many times. I just really hope I have not permanently caused major brain damage because during those 4 months, I did not feel well at all mentally and had very little motivation to do anything at all.

    • Jake, When y ou make it through withdrawal again, I wonder if getting on an antidepressant might help? I was just thinking it might help with the chronic sort of depression that seems to go along with the aftermath of addiction. I do think it takes time for the brain to heal but I don’t know about permanent damage. I will email you.

  13. I was thinking the same thing (about taking an anti-depressant). When I quit for the 4 months, I kind of just wanted off of everything and so I didn’t take anything during this time, but I need to actually function in real life, I will look into this…! I was thinking about taking another med called suboxone, but it is also an opiate and I’ve heard it can be very difficult to get off of that also. I’m getting really close to completely running out which is good, but it’s also very frightening at the same time, I have zero desire to use again as I am in exactly the same boat I was 4 months ago, same problems are still there, just got to somehow find a way to cope with real life without drugs.

  14. I’d just like to say that since I last posted and spoke to Tiss which was back in March, I am worse than ever. I am no longer a ‘functional’ addict, I am using all day, every day. I just got out of rehab (the Narconon program) which made everything worse. Anyone thinking about going there, dont do it. I used in there and was introduced to more drugs than before. The program is shocking- people who use get a slap on the wrist and the unethical behaviour just escalates. Whilst I was there, one of the professional staff members relapsed and is now there as a patient again. If they are our role models, then what hope do we have?

    To everyone still suffering, I wish you all the best and I pray you dont end up in my position. That’s homeless right now and without a family at Christmas.

    • Sasha,
      I am so sorry to hear about your current state. You said in your earlier posts that your parents have helped you, at least financially. Obviously they know their child is not OK. So have you been honest with them? What has changed from before when you were having contact with them? I would do anything to help my child and I hope your parents would be too. I’m sorry that Narconon didn’t work for you. I don’t know much about that program but my son is very down on it. But, I don’t want to be negative if it’s helped anybody. What are you plans now? You are so young and I beg of you to not lose hope.
      I don’t know what state you live in but can you get into any state run program?

  15. i am eager to know what it feels like; i know it can ruin your life in a second but there is just that one moment laura explained, that moment that all heroin addicts live for that i just cant seem to get out of my conscious. i feel like i have the one willpower noone else has but thats just silly, is it?

    • Surely you are kidding, right? After reading these heartbreaking posts full of bright young people that probably have lots of willpower in other aspects of their lives and they could not use “willpower” to get off a drug addiction. It is not about willpower. It’s about getting physically addicted to a powerful drug that is nearly impossible to get off of. Take your adventuresome spirit and bungee jump off the Royal Gorge or mountain climb, do anything but test your willpower against this drug, which you will not win. IT will win.

  16. Well, I read the article and spoke to me. I have been a “functional” addict for about 5 years now. I say functional loosely since it seems far from that. My ability to function seems to diminish each day, and days where I don’t have a shot are definitely not even close to functional. I have quit a few times, but I always come slithering back.

    Lets see, I first started with your average pain killers, then moved on to harder pain killers. eventually I was using Oxycontin 80s, a couple a day. It got to a point where the Oxys were not enough so I moved onto heroin. It didn’t take long before I started shooting. Once that started, there was no looking back.

    About a week ago I blew a shot, and I fucked my arm up really really bad. My whole arm feels like it is about to fall off, and I pray everyday that it gets better. Since then I have sworn off shooting, at least for now, so I am back to snorting. However, snorting is much weaker and I must do much much more. My money is almost completely out and I wont get more money for about 2 weeks. There is no way I can possibly go for that long without a fix, I wont be able to work or do anything if I don’t get this worked out.

    Very few people know of my addiction, only those who also addicted know, everyone else thinks im another nomral guy. Im one of the top ranked employees at my company, my boss thinks im a little angel. If she found out about this she would be beside herself. My parents have no idea, though I never see them and hardly talk to them.

    I haven’t had much of a gf in the past couple of years since heroin has literally taken my life over. Any extra money I get usually goes to bags, not to women. I am wearing the same clothes for years now, they are starting to tear and fade. I haven’t had a hair cut in forever, and I usually shave my head with a bear trimmer because I have no money for grooming myself.

    Anyways, heroin is an evil drug and I regret using it. I guess, the feeling of pure bliss it gives a user is the best way to forget all of their problems. No matter how in debt I am, how alone I am and how sad I may be, when I get a fix none of that matters and I am perfectly contempt with life.

    • Rob, I think your last sentence (albeit a mistake) says it all , “I am perfectly CONTEMPT with life”. That is true. It is with contempt that you live. Please, please trust in somebody to tell this problem about. Do you work for a large company and do you have insurance. Your boss may be the best person to tell. Anything medical is confidential. People are sent to treatment everyday. I mean, honestly, what do you have to lose, except your life? What about your parent? Maybe it’s time to reach out to them too. Give people a chance to help you! So what if they are shocked? I’m sure they will be—-but, your ability to work and over come the addicts’ daily preoccupation says so much about your dedication to your job and willingness to work hard. Use that kind of energy into getting well!!

  17. Everyone… hello. As with a few, I am a young addict. I lead a seemingly normal life. I am a mother, a 20 year old girl who just graduated college. I graduated with track marks on my arms and fresh scabs from leaving class to slam in the bathroom. i have tried to quit since the day i started. Last valentines day. I had a great date last year didnt I? Right now I am shaking, I am sweating. I did my “lost shot” at around 12 this afternoon. Last night, I had my junkie friend come get me so we could watch a movie, to get out of the house. I was at high anxiety levels because I took way too much yesterday. The little piece in the spoon keeps getting bigger. I was with my unknowing family yesterday for superbowl. I forgot how many shots I did. My team is the greenbay packers. I was so happy.. I got to see my team make it! I am the only person in the family whos a packers fan so they all backed me up. But I was in the bathroom. Claiming stomach problems from the bean dip. Fuck. “Jess get out of the bathroom! You are missing your team win!” How does my poor wonderful mother not kno what Im doing in there? My mother just lost her mother, so for support I moved back into her house. I have my daughter every two weeks, her dad the other two. That bastard got me hooked on it then moved 4hours away. Laughing. Going after me for child support, asking how it felt to be clean for a year off of meth, pot, coke, well, everything BUT… Just to be hooked on the worst drug in the worst way. When I call him crying, he reminds me “no jess, you are on the best drug in the best way. The only trick is you cant come off it.” I cried today. I want to stop, but i feel as tho I am the singer of hotel california. I can check out anytime Id like (death) but I can never leave (heroin). I dont think I will ever be able to stop. It is my lifestyle and I have no support. I cant tell my mother, she is an amazing mother, but is totally intolorent of even just weed. I look at her each day and I hurt. I get tears in my eyes. I want to tell her, mom help me please. But something stops me. Im scared. Its scary. I want it to go away. But I love it. I have a pocket full of money today, but my goal for the day -quit heroin-. Then I come upon I miss you heroin. She says shes shaking, Im shaking. She says she wants a taste, I want a taste. She works for her sack, I work for mine. She says she waited, I wait. I wait at the lake. I wait on stoneybrook. If JT is in town, I dont need to wait tho. I go strait to his house. He was my brother in a different life. This one, but heroin is a new life of its own. It takes you over and replaces you. Anyway, a point I am trying to say… This is not the story to read the day you decide to come off. It talks about heroins wonder. It makes you forget the bad. When the plunger meets the needle, there is no bad. Only the rush of joy and peace of mind. But its fake and its evil. God I feel like Im at a battle with myself right now. I need a shot. Jt is in town. Why me?

  18. Jessica,
    The only reason Laura talks about how great this drug feels is to illustrate how seductive this drug is–just as you are pointing out now. No use blaming the drug or anybody else for how great it feels. It does, otherwise people wouldn’t do it.

    Tell you mother—now. Your mother loves you and yes, she may be heartbroken. What mother wouldn’t? But more important, she loves her child more than she will be angry or disappointed. As you no doubt have read on this thread, it is nearly impossible to quit on ones’ own. Don’t make you mother guess what’s going on—put it out there and be completely totally honest. Will it be horrible and hard to do? YES! It will be. But, as you know, it is a horrific, vicious cycle that has to end somewhere. You have a child to take care of. She would be devastated to lost her mother—a scar that will never leave. And your mother would never forgive herself for wondering all the ‘what ifs’ if something happens to you. You need tremendous support and you’re not going to get it from that cruel person who fathered your child–don’t look there for it. Look to the people who love you unconditionally. Go to an AA/NA meeting. Do ANYTHING but use the drug. Please, go right now and sit down with your mother and spill it. I’m a mother and have helped my son as much as I could. I’m so glad he can talk to me. I would do anything for my kids, as your mother would do for you. Please let us know what happens from here. As a mother, my heart aches for you. But I also ache for your child and your mother. Please, please do not take that shot. Go talk to your mom.
    X0X0 Tiss

  19. I came across this article completely by accident and have to say it was very intruiging. As a non drug user, I would have to say that there is nothing at all “functional” about Ms. Laura. I would imagine that almost every non-addict would agree with me, as the article basically says, in detail, how messed up her life was/is. The term “more functional” would be much more accurate.

    I realize I can’t completely relate to what is going on in the mind of a heroin addict, but I fully believe that claiming to be “functional” is a form of thinly veiled self delusion.

    Also let me add that there is a very good chance some people did realize she was addicted to some drug. She believes, despite a constant opiate induced haze, that no one picked up on her addiction. Sure, maybe no one figured out she was slamming heroin, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t suspect she was some variety of addict. And if people thought it was “only” an eating disorder, well, that’s not much of a victory on Laura’s part.

    Again, interesting stuff, and a good window into the mind of a junkie.

  20. I did the shot. And many more. But I cant help it and I cant tell my mother. Its too scary. She isnt understanding and I dont want to end up homeless. Today I applied at a dental office. I got a call not an hour later about an interview on monday for the job. I am so excited I can hardly wait. I bet everyone reading this is probly terrified hoping im not the one working in thier mouth. Haha but not really. I can do my job on the stuff. I dont get plastered before I go in. Just enough to make the withdrawls go away. Its actually a good thing. I do it less when I am working and last time I was working I actually quit for a few days once. I have really ben hoping and praying to quit this fucking peice of shit bullshit drug. God so hard tho.. it sucks to need it to feel normal. My friends got into a car accident a week ago coming back from picking up thier sack. 4 of them wrecked into a tree in the guy im seeing’s 66 mustang. If it wasnt made of steel they might all be dead. One was able to hide the sack in the field before they got life flighted. I had my sack and was home not wanting to share so thank god I wasnt there. I probly would have died flying through the windsheild because Im so small. Heroin might have saved my life that night, but it could have also taken thiers. It wasnt seans fault tho, there was a forign object in the road that his car couldnt handle. Scary stuff. They got back from the hospital with broken arms and I feel horrible shooting them up for them since they cant hit themselves. I really truely said to them hey guys, maybe this is a great time to quit…. but wouldnt u kno it like true addicts, no jess its a great time to start. Please help im in pain. What do you do? I really have ben trying to stay away from my friends but its so hard. I still have access to the dealer so i do it alone and I do it all. I got my hands on norcos from one of my friends that was in the accident, so when I am done with this sack Im going to attempt what I have done a couple times before and use the norcos to get off it.. I hope. Then I wont have to involve my mother or anyone. I have a strong mind I kno I can do it, especially if I am chosen for the position. I will be so proud of myself. Thank god for the norcos or I may not even be trying. Why cant they just being oxy back????

  21. First day, Bad. I cant think or see this is the worst I have ever. This is wny no one quits… but why do we all go back after we go thru this

  22. You hate it when you are bound by it’s chains, but miss those chains when they are gone…starting this addiction is the epitome of losing your innocence to what life is like before you ever knew what heroin felt like. Even when you’re clean, life is never the same again.

  23. hey.. m steve… i am an addict for 9 months now… it has been 24 hours now and i dn wanna continue. i just completed my bachelors in eletronics and looking for job. i hv been caled fr interviews bt i dn feel like going. i tried quitting bt the night the pain was at its peak i culdnt help bt take a shot. i wanna gt out.

    • One more thing Steve. I don’t know if you’ve read thru the other posts but I am the mother of an addict. I don’t know what your relationship is like with your parents, but if they are like most parents, they will do anything to help you. My son and I are very close. I know that I cannot control his addiction but I let him know every day that I love him and will be there for him. I pray for the day he has that desire to get clean as you have expressed. Maybe you could be honest with your parents and ask them to participate in your treatment. You’d be surprised at the depths parents are willing to go to not let their child die.

  24. Steve,
    What have you tried to get off? Have you contacted a detox center? You have such a bright future ahead of you. Please contact NA and maybe they can refer you to a detox/treatment place. Reach out and let others help you. So many people are there for you but you’ve got to take the step. I wish you all the best and I hope when you write again you will tell us that you are living clean.
    Tiss

  25. Hey Tiss
    thnks fr the quick reply. i hvnt contated any detoxification clinic. and i cant tell my parents. its been 48 hours now n my desire for a shot hs never been more. m on my bed and honestly i dont think i can hold up. hope i can control myself but pain is bonecrushing. typing is so much difficult nw.

  26. hey just wanted to tel that m with ma czn who also bytheway is an addict. we are heading for our regular junkie but i wont take the shot atlest ths is wat i think fr nw. hope i can control. god help me

    • I don’t know why this is duplicated my response but I wanted to implore you to sit down and talk with your parents. They can move mountains with their love. Please trust somebody to get the desperate help you need. I hope you didn’t take that shot. God bless you. Tiss

      One more thing Steve. I don’t know if you’ve read thru the other posts but I am the mother of an addict. I don’t know what your relationship is like with your parents, but if they are like most parents, they will do anything to help you. My son and I are very close. I know that I cannot control his addiction but I let him know every day that I love him and will be there for him. I pray for the day he has that desire to get clean as you have expressed. Maybe you could be honest with your parents and ask them to participate in your treatment. You’d be surprised at the depths parents are willing to go to not let their child die.

  27. Why is quitting the most impossible thing in the world? Everyday when I’m high I look at my life. I hate it. I want to come down and I want to b normal. But them woah. Here I am in come down mode, and shit I need a shot!! It hurts. I even took some methadone. I think we addicts get to a point where our bodys exhaust everything and quitting can only happen If your will power is hardcore and u only actually have a life after H to live, cause most of us don’t. Most of us have ran our lives into the ground…

  28. Where do I start?
    Lol.
    I to was (eventually) a “functional” addict.
    However I really dont think we were/are as functional as we like to believe. There is NOTHING functional in addiction.
    I have a much different story. It started when I was 14. I left home and hit the streets. Drugs were my life. I robbed, stole, threatened, bashed, maimed, lied, and cheated to get my hit.
    Then I went to juevy. Got treatment and counciling. Was released 2 years later at age 18.
    Imediatly, as in THE MOMENT, I was released, I went and scored.
    I was supposed to be on my way to probation and parol.
    I never showed up, so once again I was on the run.
    I started dealing and did VERY well.
    I lived in a penthouses, had a different luxury hire care every week, had jewels and gold and all the clothes.
    And $2,000 a day habit.
    I got shot in the neck in a spray of bullets one night a deal went bad, and ended up dying 3 times on the way to hospital.
    I woke up under police gaurd, made a deal with myself to end the lifestyle before it ended me. After 2 weeks recovering they transfered me to the jail hospital.
    9 months later I was released into a 6 month rehab order.
    When I got out of rehab, I had a job, a unit to go to, and lots of support.
    I wanted nothing more than to stay clean.
    Exept a shot of heroin as it turned out.

    I was clean for 4 months, maintained my new lifestyle, had a girlfriend who got pregnant, then I started slipping up.
    Once a month shot. Then once a week. My girl had cheated on me and I found out the kid wasnt mine. Back to a daily habit.
    Worked and used for about a year, but things fell apart.
    Lost everything except my car.
    So I lived in it, showered where I could, and kept working and using.
    Got clean then junked again.
    At 24 I OD’d and pulled through unassisted. Woke up a mess. I was scared straight. It really got to me.
    Im 25 and been clean since, except once, and that was only one packet which I shared with my partner who wanted to try it.
    We are still together today.
    She is 35 weeks pregnant, we have a house, I work, neither of us smoke drink or do drugs. We eat right, we take health suppliments and excercise. We are spiritual (not religeous). And we look forward to giving our son all the chances we never got.

    and I am still a heroin addict.
    I no longer use or even want to.
    But my “next” hit, is never far from my thoughts

    • Indigo,
      I’ve been reading back through this thread and started wondering how you are doing? You must have about a 10 month old baby now? I hope that you and your partner were able to stay clean!! Congratulations on your baby and please give us an update. Fingers crossed that all is well. Tiss

      • Hey tiss, our boy is a year old tomorrow! ;D
        My partner and I bought our own caravan, and are lookin for a small bit of land we can buy.
        We plan to be self sufficient.
        im still clean. Still struggling. Lol

        Actually been up n down on theis rollercoaster.
        Started dealing again, (finacial pressures of supporting a family) got caught up in a surveilance op. Almost lost everything I hold close.
        Anyways, long story short.
        My boy is awesome, my mrs is great, n im holding it together.

        Love to know if my mind will ever truly be ‘clean’ though

      • Wow Indigo!! So nice to hear you are doing well!!! And congrats on your baby—great motivator for staying clean and being a good parent! Sorry you are struggling. Maybe it always will BUT your life means more than that struggle. I don’t know why they changed the format but I can’t see the other posts. Havent’ been on here in quite awhile. Again, my best to you and your partner and baby!! I’m so proud of you!

      • Well I am still clean. Goddamn caravan got stolen. Along with everything that we owned.
        We are renting a house now, in a country town. (Hardest drug on the streets here is weed)

        I founded a bike club here in australia, though there is a massive battle over our rights going on at the moment. (Government has deemed it illegal to gather in groups of 3 or more people)
        Check us out on Facebook
        ” Street Rats Gympie ”

        I’m currently on xanax because of all the stress its causing. Though because it is adictive (also because I am a heroin addict I pig them down, i guess. I still miss that sh1t so bad) I usually eat the weeks supply in 2 days, so its not a daily thing.

        I am working, my son is healthy, clever, and growing up SO damn quick!
        Still with the same Mrs.
        Another kid on the way. (You guys are the first to know, so sssshhhhh ; )

        Planning to leave the state, as the police harrasment is getting dangerous.
        Anyways.
        Good luck to all who are struggling, addicted or tempted. You CAN do it.

        I am wondering how Laura is going with her battle.

        I havnt used in SO damn long, I cant even remember it that well.

        I wouldn’t say I’m exactly a success story, but I’m having a fair crack at it.
        I’ve grown imensly as a person these last few years.

        Its still one day at a time for me.
        (Even though the closest hit would be a 3 hour drive)
        I’ve no doubt I will have another hit sooner or later, but I’ll do all I can to leave it at that.
        Withdrawals is not sum thing I wish on anyone.
        And no one deserve to grow up as ‘that junkies kid’

        Until next time everyone. ;)
        Stay safe

      • Hey Indigo! So glad you wrote to catch us up on things. Congrats on your baby(s)! Your last sentence says it all–” no kid deserves to be known as that junkie’s kid”. No truer words ever spoken. You say it is hard but it will be harder to use and withdraw and go through all the guilt for putting your family through that horrible ordeal. Stay close to your healthy supports and keep your focus true to your family— you are a family man now and that’s what comes first forever more. They depend on you in ways that only a father can give to his family. I’ll check out your link for the bike club. Please keep us posted! Xo Tiss

      • Well my boy is growing up quick, had a little girl. She is healthy and happy.

        Lost my job. (The business closed.)
        Got raided the other day.
        Got done with 15 cannabis plants, paraphernalia, and ammo.
        My mrs took the rap for it all.
        Has court on 15th of december.

        Really struggling to keep off the gear.
        really struggling.
        Mrs isnt coping well. she’s in the psych ward atm. depression, suicidal n all that.
        All coz of the trouble the police caused here.

        well. till next time.

  29. Like many others, i stumbled upon this article by accident. I am a 17 year old heroin addict, who is 55 days sober as of right now. It breaks my heart to see all the pain and sorrow written here, in the origional post, as well as the following comments.
    We all seemto have one thing in common, dont we? This drug, in one way or another, has torn innocence from us, that should still remain. I have been using since Christmas day, 2009 unil my last shot 55 days ago. I graduated high school middle of my class, and no one knew. Everyone thought i was a little bit skinny, or noticed i never ate, that my hands shook, and when i did eat, it was always something intolerably sweet.
    I know this post is quite old, but i thought its worth it to put my thoughts down somewhere. A boyfriend i had been together with on and off throughout my highschool career died untimely in an accident while on vacation, i dont live with my biological parents, who i know, love, and miss. I was sexually assaulted by a member of my adopted family and everyone knew, and did nothing. This is why i turned to the drugs in the first place. When i was 15 i lived on the streets for the majority of the year, running for a dealer, and skimming as much as i could without him noticing. When the friend i had who got me into smack OD’d on meth and ended up in a coma, i moved back home. Still, not a word about it from my family or friends. It was always like it just didnt exist. Whatever i did that pointed to my addiction, just wasn there to them, because then they would have to pay attention to me.
    My life has fallen apart since i got clean. I used to be popular, couldnt walk anywhere without people smiling and being happy to see me. Now i get stares and wispered words behind hands. I cant handle people judging me. Call me what i am, sure, but im clean! Its not like im using..
    The last few weeks i have been so close to using. The only benefi is that in my area, smack is hard to get your hands on. I have felt so empty and listless. Like my inner candle has just burned out. When im clean i feel like im going nowhere, like i am moving backwards. My body aches for the drug.
    I cant help but think about it everyday, no matter what i am doing.
    I had made me do some terrible things, but it just doesnt matter. I would do everything just the same. I love the drug, and i live for it. I dont know how much longer i can go without it.

    • Eva, Thank you for posting. Even though this is an old post, it keeps bringing people together to share their experiences, joys and sorrow. I am a mother of a drug addict and my heart goes out to you. How did you get through withdrawals? Do you have an aftercare program? Can you talk to a school counselor? You must be willing to trust someone to know you are not alone even though you feel that way now. You want attention from you family? Eva, for some of us, that’s just not going to happen and that’s part of why you need counseling to understand your family dynamics. The other thing is this—the elephant in the room maybe needs to be talked about. Your family may be far more open to helping you than you realize. As a parent, it is horrific to watch your child suffer and many people just deny that what is happening, is really happening. Please please don’t go back. Make a phone call to NA, AA, a school counselor or just keep posting here until you can do something other than use. I will be here for you and others may give you support too. As you know, there is alot of dysphoria (low mood and depression) that goes along with the body recalibrating itself. It will take time but you MUST get support from others. Highschool is crap for many people Eva–just awful. Do you have an alternative school that might be a better fit for you? You’ve been through so much and I applaud you for getting straight!!! X0X0 Tiss

      • I am interested to hear what has happened with your son, i was reading, and was intrigued.
        For withdrawals i was with my boyfriend at the time, Nick, and i literally rode it out. The vomitting, the pain, the horrid smell…god it was horrifying. Nick made sure i kept drinking enough fluids, and taking t3’s when i wasnt vomitting…not that it helped at all.
        I no longer attend high school. I have graduated. I am working at a local McDonald’s, tryingto save some money to maybe go to college or university, not that my grades from highschool were really good enough.
        I honestly have had some horrid encounters with councellors….i was sexually assaulted, and after i testifies against the person, and put him in jail, the court appointed “therapist” told me, in a nut shell, that it was my own fault. The woman ended up losing her job, but the damage was done. I can ot bring myself to trust someone like that again.
        As for them being open? I am inclind to think not. I lived in a relatively nearby (40min away) city, for 6-8 months, and they never asked me where i went, or why, or what i was doing. When i returned home i weighed 76lbs. They never asked, nothing. I have a few close friends, but lost many when i started to ask my closer friends for help about my addiction. They simply couldnt understand. I went to a Catholic school. I lost at least 3 of the people i was closest to because of it, not because i was doing the smack, but because i was trying to quit and needed emotional support. Some friends, huh? By the end of grade 12 i was one of the most popular in my grade, now i have 5 friends.

  30. Eva, my son seems to be doing better as in he got off heroin with the use of Ibogaine. I don’t believe he’s used it for about a year and a half. I spent a week visiting him at the 1st of August ( he lives in a different state) and he didn’t have any of the signs. . However he continues to smoke pot , drink (tries to control it) and liberally uses hallucinogens. I believe he also sells drugs, at least pot so he is still immersed in that lifestyle. He’s never had a ‘real’ job and he’s 28 so there will be a time when he will pay the piper so to speak. You can only live that lifestyle for so long.

    You sound like a very intelligent young woman and have accomplished much in your short life. So you know you are able to achieve something when you have a goal. I’m sorry about your past experiences with family and counselors but please dont judge all of them by those experiences. Go to a local community health center where you can get counseling for almost nothing or sliding scale. Also, college advisement counseling would be able to guide you toward grants and all sorts of scholarships even if your grades weren’t the best. Most folks who go to college don’t have straight a’s or even close. Plus the fact you have been on your own could also work in your favor. Trust in a good counselor so you dont get stuck in a victim mentality. It will keep you down. You can make it– you are a survivor of incredibly terrible experiences. But they don’t have to define you! Use those experiences to make you stronger. Good luck and pease keep posting. I’m rooting for you! Tiss

    • I can hardly breathe sometimes when im off the drug, even still. I just cant let go. My boyfriend just asked me to marry him. I cant possibly trust in myself to stay sober. Ive tried rehab’s in the area, but they all suck, a lot. I cant trust him not to leave when he realizes i cant quit, either.
      I just cant let go. I have nothing left, emotionally.

      • All the rehabs will suck until you give up the fight and surrender to something else except smack. Your boyfriend surely knows you have this problem. If he loves you, trust in him to help you. Get to a place that specializes in opiate addiction. Your body is playing tricks on you, making you believe that you must have this drug to survive but in reality is killing you.

      • Eva, Tiss here to say hello and see how you are doing. I hope and pray that this post finds you well and healthy! Please check in when you can. Xo Tiss

  31. Hi im 18I was just surfing the web when I clicked on this, I’m a heroin addict been for 7months,started when my dad passed away haven’t stopped since I have a job and am a functional user I’m still in highschool but am not gonna graduate on time cause I’m always thinking about my next fix, I know quitting is the best but is so hard when its all around, I’d tell my mom but she would freak out all ready does when I’m high on weed. Lol just wanted to say what I’ve been holding in for so long.

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  34. Tiss,
    You and I spoke on this thread back in 2010.
    This website was saved into my favourites list, and I just stumbled across it again.
    I just wanted you to know that I am doing great. I have been clean for 2 years next month!
    And I have a beautiful little 5 month old boy, Nicholas.
    I have started up part-time work again- I attend local high schools and speak to the students about my past drug addiction and help them with any issues they feel might be arising. It is so VERY rewarding. It almost makes me feel as though I was on Heroin for a reason. Now that I can potentially steer teenagers away from it, I know it was all worth while.
    I just wanted to thank you for your constant support and lack of judgement. This thread seems to have taken off, emotionally, for a lot of addicts, and I think that says a lot about the importance of venting and opinion sharing. Sometimes addicts just need to be heard, and sometimes it’s best if it’s not a close family member or friend. There were times when a lady named ‘Tiss’ on the internet is exactly what I needed. You are a hero to many addicts in this thread who just needed a single soul to listen to them. You may not have solved all their problems and freed them from their addiction, but I do know this much- You gave them your time, your understanding and your kindness. Enough to get an addict through another day.
    I also remember you talking about your son. I really hope he is okay now!!
    Please let me know.
    Sasha xxx

    • I’ve tried to answer you 3 times but my password keeps messing up. If this doesn’t go thru, I’ll answer when I get back from vacation. Quickly—CONGRATULATIONS on your sobriety and your precious baby!!! This brings me the upmost joy. Made my day!!! Thank you for letting me know!! Your life is just beginning Sasha and I hope to hear of all the good things ( or bad) that led you to where you are. So proud of you honey. I never doubted for a second that you were going to make it!!

    • Hey Sasha, Did you ever get my reply? Someone said it looked like my words were running off the screen or something. Anyway, I did get back to you right away and wanted to make sure you got my reply. X0 Tiss

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    • Yes Tiss, it is still about heroin. I don’t know why these weird comments keep popping up! Probably a glitch in the system…
      How are you and your son anyway? Hope all is well xx

      • Sasha, did you get my reply from April 8th? We are in the middle of tornado stuff so I’ll answer you tomorrow with a longer reply but I wanted you to know that I did get back with and am so proud of you!!!! My son is holding steady—not using heroin but smoking pot. I really don’t care about that anymore as long as he stays off the hard stuff. Anyhow, gotta go and I’ll get back with you!!! Yea Sasha!!!!

      • Thanks Tiss! No I did not get your reply, but have scrolled through and just read it. Thank you for your kind words. I am so happy to be clean- words can’t even explain it,
        And about your boy- by all means I don’t condone pot, however it is MUCH better than his alternative. I’m really glad to hear he is not using heroin anymore. Really glad.
        Xxxx

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  41. Amazing article Laura. I was also a functional heroin/oxycontin addict who nobody ever suspected anything except for when i did ask to borrow money from family members a bit too often, which i learned not to do when they got suspicious. Eventually i got on suboxone, which I now have been on for far longer than i care to admit. And now I still use heroin (insufflation, not iv) about 6-8 days per month, and I can’t help but still be deeply in love with it. I hate to admit it, but it is the only thing in my life that i truly look forward to and that is a very sad admittance! Anyways great article and hopefully I can totally clean up my act like you have done, I would like to quit and only use maybe a few times a year, which really isn’t so bad!

    • Richie I’m so glad I get an instant notification when someone replies to this thread. Please let me tell you something. You wanting to get clean and only “do heroin a few times a year” was EXACTLY what I used to say! I thought I had it all figured out. It’s absolute crap and second to that, it’s practically impossible. Whether you identify yourself as “functional” or “disfunctional”, you are nevertheless an ADDICT. The only way you will ever successfully remain clean, and attain that happiness and fondness for life that you are now lacking, is if you completely rid heroin from your life. And all other drugs for that matter. Once you do this, it gets easier with time. I am years clean now, and if someone was to put heroin and a needle in front of me now, I would say no without hesitation- and this is coming from a girl who once said the same thing as you- that I’d like to be clean but enjoy it every now and then. Believe me, when your clean for a while, and you start to value other things in life, your stance will change.
      Please Richie try to do it. You sound intelligent and you seem more than aware you have a problem. That’s the best start for a successful recovery.
      Good luck x

      • Ditto to everything Sasha said! I really appreciate your honesty but I think what you will find here is love and complete honesty back so know that it is written in that tone. I am the mother of an addict and I see him struggle everyday rationalizing his drug behavior. No, he’s no longer using heroin smokes pot 24/7 and is that better than heroin? As a mother I can say I am relieved but only because he doesn’t die from that. However, he also uses hallucinogens, ketamine, all sorts of stuff I’m sure on a regular basis. His life is still revolving around drugs. There is no middle ground with heroin. I hear you saying you can control this addiction to a degree–have you read through all of these incredibly sad posts? And…..Laura did say she also loved the feel of heroin but in the end, she knew if she kept dipping her toe in that poison, it was going to kill her—and it will you too. Please, please read what others have gone through—their miseries and their empowerment and happiness when they get straight! We are here for you!!! Tiss

      • Thank you for the well wishes and I agree with what you are saying, but the sad thing about me is that I am such a happier person when I am on dope, I care more about my loved ones, and I feel the way I wish I could feel when I am sober. When I am high I actually feel alive, whereas when I am not I merely go through the motions. The problem for me is that my brains reward system has been so damaged from years of opiate abuse, that my reward system only kicks in when I am doing opiates! I do believe that this is something that is reversible, and that it may take a long time, but I know eventually my brain would heal itself, but is a battle I am unwilling to fight at the moment! I know I don’t want to be a user forever, but the suboxone makes it easy for me to not feel like a junkie (because I never have to go through withdrawals anymore), but all it really does it hold me over until I can get more dope. I need to get off suboxone and heroin, and I actually think it may be harder to get off of suboxone to be honest, the half life is much longer and w/d’s supposedly last way way way longer than heroin does. I know that I need to get off eventually, but until I truly make that concrete decision I never will. I am working on it though, and I think I am getting closer! Thank you again for the kind words! The sad truth of opiates is that if somebody doesn’t truly want to get clean in their heart of hearts they will continue to get high until they reach that conclusion, I know everybody here already knows that, but it is so true!

      • Look of all the things you have said, you are definitely right when you say that no one will get clean unless they are personally ready to do so. That’s why I won’t press the matter any further. To be completely honest, you don’t sound 100% ready to fully commit to recovery, and with every relapse after a clean period, the habit goes to a whole new level, so I always warn people of that. Unless recovery is a REAL possibility, not simply to please others, it may do more damage than good. So don’t do it unless YOU want to. I just hope you survive the interim. That’s the risk I guess.
        And one more thing, it is an illusion in your mind that you are happier and more ‘alive’ on dope. It is merely an escape. The real happiness will return when you are clean for a long period.
        All the best Richie x

      • RIchie,
        The opiates are playing deadly tricks on you with your illusion (delusion) that you are happier on opiates. But that is the lure also. I hope so much that you live long enough to really want and crave to get off of these drugs. It is hell getting off but you didn’t get here over night. We’ll be here for you to listen, to offer hope and love and honesty. Please don’t lose touch with us. You wouldn’t believe some of the success stories I’ve heard on this board–from people who sound exactly like you. BTW, if you think your family doesn’t know you are high when you are feeling so terrific around them, I’ve got news for you. They know. And I’m sure it kills them. When my son is high and feeling so terrific— I feel gutted. My child is killing himself and sadly so are you. I’m sure every addict who died before their time thought they had enough time to get their fill. Doesn’t usually work that way. I hope and pray the best for you. And again, I do appreciate your honesty and I know Sasha and I are saying some brutally honest things–but I have a feeling you can handle it and in fact, I think you want the truth. When I was 26 I went through 6 weeks of treatment for alcoholism. I am 57 now. Addiction is so strong in our family, sadly. But, I remember vividly thinking that i was one of ‘those’ people whose systems were so sensitive that I NEEDED the alcohol to FEEL anything close to normal. Wow, what a mind trick that was. It took me a long time to feel ‘normal’ again and in fact, addiction goes hand in hand with depression and anxiety. I have been on an antidepressant for many years now which has helped me tremendously. But, would I’ be alive today had I not stopped drinking (and other drugs but not opiates)–the answer is absolutely NOT.. No way. I am thinking of you and hoping that something will help you see that light is sobriety—Tiss

      • Tiss you have such a kind heart. I will never forget your words of encouragement when I was in exactly richies position xxx

      • Sasha, Everytime I ‘hear’ from one of my ‘kids’ I am overjoyed with happiness when they are doing well—I was so thrilled to hear back from you last spring, I just can’t tell you. You have done MY heart a world of good-=–you have given ME hope and I thank YOU my dear. I hope we always stay in touch. I’m never leaving this board until every last one of you is better==== or not. I wish I could see your darling baby. I know you are the most awesome mom.

        Sasha, you are using your experience to help others. You can’t know what good you are doing in this world. Someday, somebody will contact you and tell you that your honesty about your experience and your loving and caring nature about them, helped them get well. X0X0 Tiss

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  43. Thanks again for the well wishes a couple months ago when I wrote in, and I am doing better, but still using every few weeks for a couple days, so I have cut down quite a bit from when I wrote in a couple months ago, I was honestly pretty heavily using when I wrote in in July. But I am still using (again I sniff, I don’t use needles), but am inching closer to doing it less and even less though I have a very hard time seeing a future where I never use at all. The fact that I sniff and don’t shoot up I think has allowed me to not lose total control of my use like the people who use the needle do, all my friends who started to shoot up all lost control and most of them ended up overdosing and becoming untrustworthy and/or robbing their family and friends, this is something I have never done. Heroin for me is almost like my girfriend, as sad as that is, I care for it more than I cared for my girfriends I’ve had in the past (at least I thought I did), and although I only use 3 or 4 days a month now, I still think about it all the time and look forward to those 3 or 4 days like they are the highlights of my life, and they are! I’m like a little kid opening Christmas presents when those days come around, and although I am sure that seems pathetic it just is the way it is. The bottom line for me is that as long as you are not hurting anybody or robbing or stealing from anybody to buy opiates, then I don’t think that it is all that bad of a thing as long as you don’t shoot up, because shooting up is a whole different ball game. I actually went through all my years of college using opiates all the time and drinking a lot of beer, and somehow I still managed to get straight A’s and get a good job which I sill have now, so I guess there is worse things I could be doing like smoking crack or using meth, which both are a million times worse for your health than heroin use is. I don’t want to seem like I want to turn people on to heroin because I absolutely do not, to anybody reading this who is contemplating using heroin for the first time, DO NOT DO IT! Your life is never the same once you become addicted to opiates, and although I seem like I think heroin isn’t bad I do understand that my life has been altered because of opiates (especially my reward system in my brain) and I will tell you that your life will also be altered, so please do not use heroin if you are thinking about it.

    • Richie, So glad you checked in and are still with us. Your letter makes me feel so sad and someday you will look back on this and also see what I see. That you are a slave to heroin and you know this. I am so sorry because I hear in your letter an intelligent, incredibly insightful and loving person who has stunted his life and growth due to the obsession with heroin. I’m not a heroin addict but had to give up alcohol 30 years ago. Unfortunately addiction runs in my family and it has ravaged several family members–my son being the one who chose heroin. He has told me that he had to get away—completely from it or otherwise he obsessed about it 24/7. He used Ibogaine–look it up. It’s not a legal treatment here in the US but is in many countries and there are many clandestine places where US addicts can get this treatment. I personally don’t know where they are but if you use H, then someone will know. Please keep checking in and know that you are cared for and there are lots of people pulling for you.
      Tiss

    • Richie, where abouts do you live? Now that you have explained the ins and outs of your heroin usage, I think you are the perfect candidate for a naltrexone implant. Please look it up. I’m not sure about all countries, but I am in Australia and it saved so many lives here (myself included). It only lasts 6 months but for me, that was all I needed to kick the habit. The first 6 months in recovery is the most vital so it’s time span is appropriate.
      I’ll tell you why it suits you. Given that you are snorting H, and not on any maintenance program’s like methadone, it means that you can get the implant safely. And put it this way, if you attempt to use heroin with the implant inside you, it is the equivalent of throwing your money in the gutter. It completely blocks the sensation. Trust me, after you realise this, you will stop buying the junk. Then, in six months, the implant will wear off. If you want up return to heroic, you can. But I have a funny feeling that after 6 months clean, you will see the benefits of sobriety and won’t go back. If you want assistance, I’m glad to help you.

      • Thank you both again so much for the well wishes and advice, but I actually am on a maintenance program (just not through my insurance), I am on suboxone, the days I do not use heroin I take 2 mg of suboxone, 1 mg in the morning and 1 mg at night, but I do not get the suboxone from a doctor I get it from my friend who is on a suboxone maintenance program, so I am not sure if I would be good candidate for the naltrexone. I have been on suboxone for a very, very long time, and to be honest I think it’s harder for me to get off suboxone than off opiates because I use suboxone 85-90% of the time and heroin only 10-15% of the time I am much more used to being on suboxone than heroin and although the suboxone works to make me feel fine it doesntwrk to kill the cravings like it is supposed to (probably because I only get mental cravings), I have abused them both intermittently for so long. I know thats a small dose of suboxone because most of my friends take between 8 and 24 mg of suboxone a day, but that dose gets me through the day and actually works pretty well. I will look into it though, I do have insurance so if it was feasible and it is legal in the U.S. (I live in Massachusetts) then it would be something I would possibly do. Thanks again.

      • Richie, Your life sounds very very complicated! I’ve read about the naltrexone implant it has worked very well for many people. And yes, you can get the treatment in the U.S. I wish you the best of luck and I’m rooting for you to get this monkey off your back!

      • I didn’t realise you were taking suboxone. I’m not certain, but I’m quite sure you would have to work your way off that before getting an implant. I know you say you are only taking 1-2mg a day, but don’t estimate it’s power and the strength it will take to quit. Richie, your next move is vital. Your reminding me of myself JUST before things got extremely worse. Jumping off the suboxone too carelessly can result in a larger heroin habit. And let’s face it, suboxone ain’t great but it’s definitely the lesser of two evils. You need to play it very safe. Reduce your suboxone only when your life has room to invite such a burden. In the meantime, try to minimise the days you turn to heroin. You say you only use gear every now and then. If you can successfully rid of this, then you will only have the suboxone to focus on. Richie, it’s 5.30am in my country and I don’t normally take such time for a stranger. But you are smart, kind, and seem to be honest. I have a feeling you will come through to the other side. There is a way to do it, you just need to find it. Please keep in touch with Tiss and myself x

  44. Sasha, I sure hope Richie listens to you! What a wonderful opportunity and great info for anyone checking on this board!! Richie, if you read thru Sasha’s posts you will know that she knows exactly where you are coming from. Hope is never lost!
    Warmest regards go to you Sasha!
    Tiss

    • Sasha, just checking in to see how you are doing after seeing a follow up post by Indigo. Hope you are still sober and thriving and enjoying that precious babe of yours! Xo Tiss

      • I’m well thanks Tiss! Over 3 years clean now and just weeks away from completing my degree in Alcohol and Drug Counselling. Looking forward to a nice Christmas with my little boy- it has been a very busy year… How are you Tiss? I hope you and your son are well. Always love hearing from you, and love fellow success stories in this thread. And for those who are still battling this awful disease, please know that it is never too late to take another path. There is nothing greater or more satisfying than being clean. It takes a great deal of hardwork, but if you are determined enough you WILL achieve it. It took me a million failures to gain one win, but in the end it’s all worth it. Good luck everyone and merry Chrismas… Thank you Tiss. Keep doing what you’re doing. You are wonderful :)

  45. What a story one exactly like mine except I haven’t seen 2 years of sobriety . I don’t know how I don’t know if after 16 years I could ever be happy without doing it I want to be clean but damn i might be harder than keeping up with my addiction

    • Heroin Girl, My son called this morning and his 3rd friend in less than 3 months died last night–heroin. His friend was a long time user as yourself. Please read all the posts on this thread—there are some miracle stories… Only…. they aren’t really miracles–the people who made it got into strong programs with strong support systems. I wish you luck and please know we are here to support you and love you. I’m the mother of an addict–but there are many hard core users (and former users) who know far more than I the hardships of living that lifestyle and the joys of sobriety.

  46. Wow. Just. Wow. I’ve been a heroin addict for a quarter century. It sucks hearing myself put it that way, but it is the truth. With the exception of a few yers here and there, I’ve been a functional addict as well. I’ve held jobs with security clearances. I’ve had my own sucessful business. I’ve earned a degree. All on heroin. And my experience is this: being a functional addict can last for years or even decades, but you eventually become a junkie. I have. I’ve struggled for the past three years just trying to get more than 21 days clean. And I always miss the crap.

    As you said, we can be functional addicts but the ideas of dreams and goals are out the window. It all becomes a matter of survival. And it sucks.

    • Wow Bill, your post makes me so sad. Sobriety is not impossible as many on this board can attest. My son detoxed with supervised Ibogaine. You may be familiar with it, if not, you can google it. It is legal in many countries but of course not the USA. But my son found someone trained to do detoxes with it and has had success. We are hear to listen and give support. Please keep us up on how you are doing. I wish you the very best of luck and hope you find long term sobriety so you may really live life to the fullest.

  47. Sasha, bill, heroingirl and all the rest, hope you are all doing well. I’m thinking of you all. My son has been heroin free for maybe 3 years. If he’s slipped it hadn’t been for long because he’s doing well. Enrolled in college and made it to the age of 30. Hallelujah! Please keep in touch. I miss you all especially you Sasha! Xoxoxo Tiss
    Ps, does anyone else find this site hard to use? It’s gotten confusing I think.

    • Tiss, so pleased to hear from you and my God that is fantastic news about your son!.. I am also very proud to report that I am now a Drug and Alcohol Counsellor for female prisoners here in Australia. Love my job and love my life. It all makes sense now- that ridiculously painful phase I went through was all for a greater reason. Helping others is what it’s now about for me… Merry Christmas to you and your son. Thinking of you and will be forever grateful for the support you offered me at a time when no one else would. Much love. Sasha xx

      • Wow girl, you just gave me the best Christmas gift ever! To hear you are doing so exceptionally well is the best thing I’ve heard in a long time. I’m proud of you and you’ve worked so hard to get where you are today. I’m sure your family is proud and relieved beyond words. Keep on doing what your heart is telling you to do. I’ve no doubt you’ve helped countless others who may not even realize it til some years down the road. So glad we’ve kept in touch. Truly made my year. Much love to you and your precious little family. Xoxo Tiss

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