It's All about Who You Know (and What You Take)

When you suffer from drug addiction like I did, you never really stop paying for your actions and the behavior you exhibited when you were high. The good news is that with the right guidance and support and the proper level of strength, you learn how to pay for it without having it hurt so much. If you're as lucky as I am, you learn to embrace recovery and the people that helped you get there. For those of you who are laboring over the choice of entering treatment, let me just tell you two things: 1. It does get easier 2. After a while it becomes a simple matter of life and death.

What truly opened my eyes was not even addiction itself, but rather the people that I was associating with while getting high. They say the company you keep says a lot about you; in my case, it my case it turned out to represent my willingness to throw my life away. I practically grew up in nightclubs and everything that went with them. From as far back as when I was 17, I was sneaking into clubs, bribing bouncers and bartenders with MDMA to let me in and "apply my trade", as they say. This continued all through college, until I was about 25 and made the near fatal mistake of trusting my dealer.

I guess you can say I'd been an addict ever since I first started sampling my own supply, something I swore I'd never do. The ironic thing is that I didn't run into serious trouble until I ran out of my own stuff and took some ecstasy that was laced with meth. I took way more than I should have and wound up in the hospital. This was the wake-up call that caused me to enter treatment. There's nothing quite like staring death in the face to let you know that your drug addiction is out of control. A week after I left the hospital, I made arrangments to enter a treatment program in South Florida.

Detox was the hardest part, I had a hard time with withdrawal, but since leaving treatment, I've done my best to swear off all the things (and people) that brought to the point of near death. The problem is, I'd been doing and selling drugs for so long, it became my whole life and my identity. On the first anniversary of my sobriety, I made the decision to move across country and sort of start my life over. It's been overwhelming and liberating all at once. I still keep in regular contact with my therapist and am more aware than ever of the value of life and how quickly it can be taken away.

Contact the National Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Information Center (NASAIC) anytime toll-free at (800) 784-6776 or through our online form, and we will recommend the leading drug and alcohol rehab centers for you or your loved one.