Crystal Meth is a HUGE problem…huge. And very frightening because it is so highly addictive and so likely to cause psychological problems. It is an insidious, highly dangerous drug, and the latest figures in Australia show that there are over 250,000 users in New South Wales alone who are addicted. And that’s the thing about meth, you only have to use it a tiny bit – or only use it once – to develop serious problems.
About three years ago, I caught up with my old boss and close friend (he was best man at my wedding) after he had been living in Melbourne for a few years and was back in Perth. He is only six months older than me (32) but in his time there had aged unbelievably. He looked haggard. Before he left he drank and smoked cigarettes pretty heavily, but had never touched illicit drugs in his life. He had developed a meth problem whilst in Melbourne, and offered me some. I refused, I don’t do drugs anymore (not that I ever did before regularly) – especially not drugs like that – but after my refusal he put some in my drink.
I was up all night, did some of the wildest, craziest stuff I’ve ever done in my life (I was enjoying this, by the way – just thought I was on a natural high seeing my old friend again - who, incidentally, I slept with that night - another side-effect of meth use) and basically ended up getting pushed through to my first manic episode in eight years, which lasted three weeks, over which time I went out every night, drinking and partying almost every night, and spent about $4,000 that I didn’t have during the days. I was restless and edgy, and it culminated in me falling asleep in my car on a Wednesday night in a hardware warehouse carpark, and then driving home drunk at 3am, wondering how fast I could go down a busy highway, and getting home and then badly mentally crashing and cutting both my arms with a kitchen knife. Pretty heavy stuff, and all because of ONE hit that I didn’t know I’d had.
Yes, I have bipolar disorder and am more likely to have adverse effects from these drugs, but I’ve had other drugs before and never had that kind of a reaction from a one-off experience. That’s why I didn’t want to try it – I knew how dangerous it was. It was given to me while I was unawares, and I’m still recovering financially from it, as well as the awful memories of the things I got up to under the influence.
It’s a horrible drug, and I feel desperately sorry for anyone who uses it or has a problem with it. I know how crazy it made me, I couldn’t imagine doing it every day.