I have a dual diagnosis. I was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia in1980 when I was 19.
In 1986 I became addicted to crack and powder cocaine. It started off innocently enough, crack was always in the news and I was curious about it so I tried it and I liked it. Within two months I was smoking it regularly and within three months I was addicted.
I won’t get into all my experiences while addicted. I’ll just say I spent thousands of dollars on it including my SSDI checks. I was also working part-time and spending that money on it too. I lost jobs and living situations because of smoking crack. I lost most of my possessions too. I once traded my $1000 stereo for $75.00 worth of crack which I smoked up in an hour. I sold two TV’s for a couple rocks. I literally sold the clothes off my back for a couple measly hits. The town I frequented several times a week to get my crack had (at the time) the highest murder rate of any city in California including L.A., San Fransisco, and Oakland.
While I was looking for drugs I got carjacked twice, I had someone break a bottle over my head from behind and steal $60.00 off of me while I sat there stunned, I had a 19 year old kid who I had never laid eyes on before, walk up and start beating me with a club while I sat in my car. I had my car stolen four times.
So I understand what addiction is like and I understand that you have a VERY good reason to fear for your sons safety. Let me interject here that I was born and raised into a good middle-class family and I grew up in a VERY affluent city in
So I know that addiction doesn’t discriminate, it cuts across all classes and positions and status.
People who are addicted to crack will do almost anything to feed their habit and to quell their craving and crack will take them to the worst places with the worst people. I’ll cut to the chase. I don’t think your son will quit just because he gets an apartment or a job.I think your fears are spot on. I lived in some great houses while addicted.
They were perfect for partying and having friends over to party with me. I smoked crack in luxurious surroundings. I got kicked out of some of them because of crack but I was able for awhile to live a decadent lifestyle with sex, drugs and guns in $400,000 homes I shared with others schizophrenics in semi-independent, supported housing.
Now for the good news. I got clean in 1990 through AA, CA, and NA and I have not touched any drugs or alcohol in the last 25 years. So it’s possible to get clean.
But CA and NA will tell you, nobody gets clean unless they personally want to. An addict won’t get clean for anybody else. You can threaten them, you can take away their freedom, you can beg them, you can give them ultimatums. It won’t work until the addict decides for himself that crack is wrecking their life and they want help. Until that day he will blow all his money and risk incarceration and risk his life to get those rocks of crack cocaine.
AA, CA, and NA saved my life. If you could just get your son into just one meeting so he can hear other addicts stories of addiction and recovery then it might plant a seed in his mind and show him their is a better way to live and he should not continue down the path he is going down now. Recovery is a reality.