Hopelessly Addicted This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

Why is it that no matter how incredibly hard I try to point myself in the right direction, I end up exactly where I started? It’s like a never-ending cycle of failure. I sometimes wonder why I even bother to try if nothing ever comes from it. The last few years have been extremely chaotic and frustrating; from friends ­dying, to my coke addiction, to running away, life has taken a huge toll on me. I have had nothing but horrible events, one after another. But my biggest struggle has been my addiction; it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to deal with.

I realize that many people think the life of an ­addict is easy – we just sit around all day getting money off of people and scoring a high. Do you ­really think it’s all fun and games? Or that we want our addictions to run our lives? My addiction, anyway, was ­anything but easy.

The days were long and endless when I couldn’t buy coke. I would spend between $40 and $100 a day, just on me. My weekly debt was only $60 when I first started. I was not ­using that much back then, but that changed when my boyfriend broke up with me. Then my dealer, who happened to be my best friend, started giving me coke for free.

Soon I couldn’t go a day without it. The white powder lifted into my nasal passages with ease. I took line after line into my body, hoping I could block everything out of my mind. My mind quickly relaxed, my heart raced, and my hands shook, but everything was good. I was happy – for the 10 ­minutes the high lasted. Then I’d do another line. Eventually my friend cut me off and tried to talk me into getting help, so I cut him out of my life.

With no coke in my system, I became angry, an­grier than I had ever been. My body shook for no reason. I was irritable and distant. I couldn’t think of anything but coke. I wanted it all to stop – to go back to the way things had been before I started. I wanted my life back. I didn’t want to have to sneak out of my house and score in alleys with money I stole from a sleeping homeless guy. My life was out of my control and I would have done anything to get it back, but my body wouldn’t let me. I was lost.

Just when things were starting to improve and I was finally getting my life under control, I ran away. I met lots of new people who quickly ­became friends; they were either runaways or dropouts pushing 30, but they were all addicts. Our apartment had one bedroom with nine people in it. They took care of me. They fed me, bought me clothes, a toothbrush, and whatever I needed, as well as kept me safe and ­hidden from the cops.

Then one day I overdosed. It was like any other night at the apartment. A bunch of us decided we wanted to party somewhere else. One of my friends offered his mom’s house since she was out of town. We all hopped into cars, and on the way we stopped to buy some coke.

When we arrived the house was dark and music was blasting in the living room. I headed straight for the bathroom to get high. Everyone was dancing and drinking and laughing and having fun. That’s when I made more bad decisions. A friend took a “donation” from everyone and showed up an hour later with ­ecstasy pills. I took two.

I started to feel faint and collapsed. My friends carried me to a bedroom and put me on the bed. ­After I convinced them that I was okay, a friend helped me up and made me promise not to do any more drugs.

I promised, of course, but seven lines of coke later I was stumbling down the hall, falling every few feet. I ended up hot and shaking on the bathroom tile with four “friends” gathered around me while the others waited nervously outside. My entire body shook ­uncontrollably, and I couldn’t catch my breath. I felt as if I were suffocating and had no ­control over my body. The feeling was almost indescribable; an overdose is one of the worst feelings ever. I was scared. I was trying hard to keep my eyes open but couldn’t. My friends took turns pouring water on me to cool me down while the others tried to keep me awake.

Even after that I still didn’t stop using for another three weeks. And even though I was able to stop ­before I ruined my life completely, I still wake up in the middle of the night craving coke, almost ­tasting the drip in the back of my throat.

I ask myself every day how I let myself get ad­dicted. Truth be told, no answer ever seems reason enough. Yet here I am, a year and a half sober. Drugs are the biggest demon any person can face. Once this demon is in your life, it’s hard to break free. It takes control of you, of your life, and pulls you down before you realize what is happening.

Escaping is an ongoing battle I’ll face every day for the rest of my life. I made the choice to quit on my own, without rehab or counseling. I relied only on my family, my closest friends, and myself. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Long, sleepless nights, mood swings, huge fits over nothing – I was on an emotional roller coaster and was a complete wreck. I know that those who were there for me had an equally troublesome time.

Though I am now a recovered addict, if I could make the choice over, I would have asked for help. Being with someone who had experienced with what I was going through would have been a relief and therapeutic. I was hesitant about completing this ­article; this private part of my life will be out there for anyone to read. It scared me. I then thought, Would I have felt so alone then if I knew what ­someone else had gone through?

I no longer feel the need to turn to this demon in my times of pain and confusion. However, I often ­reflect on that time in my life.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 134 comments. Post your own now!

kateyrae24 said...
Sept. 8, 2017 at 7:18 pm
Thank you for sharing your story... in December I lost my Aunt due to an overdose on Heroin, she was only 41. Your story helped me understand the struggles people with addiction go through, I have wanted to know more since my aunt passed so thank you. I am glad you were able to make it out of your addiction.
18zavala4835 said...
Mar. 8, 2016 at 10:39 am
wow, this is really scary and brave of you. I have met people with addictons, most of them haven't recovered yet, thank you for sharing your story.
Mnm15 said...
Jan. 14, 2012 at 11:41 am
Wow, that was amazing. My uncle was a coke addict for YEARS and he's now a recovered addict of a little over two years and has a wife and kids, he's even working on getting custody of the daughter he had while he was addicted because he's in a much better place than her mom now. He had to go through an intervention before he was able to stop using and I give you a lot of credit for being able to get out of it and for being willing to share your story. I really hope more people follow in your sho... (more »)
theswimmer14 said...
Jan. 14, 2012 at 11:27 am
that is really brave! your an insparation to so many people
Mylittlerobot22 said...
Jan. 12, 2012 at 1:03 pm
amazing..i love this.
musiclover97 said...
Jan. 12, 2012 at 11:29 am
Wow. I really respect your courage and honesty.
Cidinha said...
Jan. 12, 2012 at 6:35 am
This article has impressed me and I want to give my compliments to the author for her courage!!Good Luck and don't giveup!!
garthgirl8888 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Dec. 25, 2011 at 2:23 pm
wow. wow. wow.
writingmagic26 said...
Nov. 29, 2011 at 9:20 pm
you were very brave to share this.
kairi.kaylyn said...
Nov. 29, 2011 at 11:04 am
This was a really good article. I know some people in life go through this too but I'm glad you were able to defeat this addiction.
Suzy2015 said...
Oct. 16, 2011 at 6:14 pm
I was addicted for a long time and finally got out of it. Getting out was the best decision I made, I am glad you made the same one. Good writing!
purpleink said...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 8:16 pm
Wow, this is mind blowing. I'm so glad you're no longer addicted. Thanks for writing this. I have no plans for using drugs, but sometimes I wonder. Doesn't everyone? Thanks again.
hersheylover said...
Aug. 11, 2011 at 7:46 pm
im sorry for your hardships i feel your pain
NinjaHummingbird said...
Aug. 11, 2011 at 6:12 pm
I am sorry for what happened to you and am glad you are getting better. You would think that a best friend would care for your well being and try to stop you from becoming addicted instead of giving you drugs.
Ellimee said...
Jul. 21, 2011 at 12:12 pm
If anyone wants to start drugs because they think they know the "reality" of it, I promise to make sure they read thi. It's so serious and descriptive, they'll be glad people like you are out there writing this.
ilovemusic:) said...
Jul. 20, 2011 at 10:51 pm
i loved your article! i a couple months back told teen ink that they should have stories more often like this because your story inspires others nd warns them of the addictions there are.  .i have a family member who was addicted to coke 4 quite a while nd he also stopped. ur strong 4 quiting
billgamesh11 replied...
Jul. 21, 2011 at 7:56 am
I give you a LOT of credit for being strong enough to quit, and I thank you for pitting this put there so you can warn other people about the effects of drugs so they don't have to go through the amount of pain and suffering that you did. I am really glad that you quit and you really inspired me because I think to myself sometimes how much my life sucks when the problem is nothing compared to yours, so thanks again!!!:)
Holli N. said...
Jul. 20, 2011 at 9:46 pm
One thing that might have helped you a lot is going to a Narcotics Anonymous meeting. Those rooms are always filled with people who know what you are going through. I go to those meetings. They don't care what you did or how much. I had a small run in with drugs too and they helped and are still helping me. They also helped me realize recovery is an on going thing. We are always recovering addicts. I'm glad you wrote this story. It is truely inspiring and a very helpful thing to anyone thinking ... (more »)
luvit said...
Jul. 20, 2011 at 9:00 pm
I really enjoyed the story, and it was well written but there were some flaws. For example, I think weed would have been more realistic because do you know how much cocaine costs? For the person to be able to afford it in the beginning is a little ridiculous, and the friend would never give free cocaine. good plot though
luvit replied...
Jul. 20, 2011 at 9:03 pm
Wait, if this is a true story I am so sorry for my previous comment. It was just me being stupid. :) I really did love the story though and if it is true you are so strong!
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