Drug Use

I have a form of cystic fibrosis and I have managed to get free of the long-ish list of prescription medication and OTC drugs that were once my norm. So people tend to think I am strictly anti-drug and this is untrue.

I never know how to adequately convey my view of drug use, whether prescription, OTC or even "street" drugs. For the most part, I tend to actually be incredibly sympathetic to people who use drugs of any sort.

I was homeless for several years and in my mind I was homeless largely due to my refusal to go along with the world's plans to keep me heavily drugged for life, even though this course of treatment is known to be a path to certain death. The drugs they give people like me are not a cure for the condition.

At best, they delay death a little while. But they don't actually make you healthy.

Because I was diagnosed late in life and I have a relatively mild form of the condition, I don't have this mental model that I am "supposed to be" on maintenance drugs and "supposed to" see a doctor multiple times per year merely because I have a form of CF. That was not a part of my life before my official diagnosis in my mid thirties, so I have resisted pressure to go along with this scheme by anyone who talks to me and has any idea what CF is.

I am not anti-drug. I am pro health.

What I am doing is working. I don't currently have need of official drugs, though I don't see myself as entirely "clean" either because I regularly consume things like caffeine as part of my diet. Caffeine is a known drug and is not any less so just because it conveniently comes in food products like coffee and chocolate.

So I was homeless because of a refusal to use the drugs I am supposed to be on and I was, instead, self medicating with things like coffee (caffeine), tea (an astringent) and diet tonic water (contains quinine, a drug used to treat malaria, among other things). I don't see that as fundamentally different from homeless people who use street drugs to self medicate for mental health issues where they prefer the side effects of the street drugs to the side effects of the prescription medication they are supposed to be on.

In fact, I briefly had a "sorta" boyfriend who was also homeless and doing exactly that. He was bipolar and he was homeless because he couldn't hold down a job while off his meds and he refused to take them. He far preferred drugs like marijuana instead.

I've also had other loved ones in my life who self-medicated with "street" drugs or alcohol for various issues. One relative, who used to spend $10k annually on cocaine back when $10k was real money, almost certainly has an undiagnosed head injury syndrome. Another drank extremely heavily for years, probably to calm their nightmares from having fought in the front lines of two wars.

So I'm used to being around people who are "functional alcoholics" -- in other words, they drink heavily but are competent at their jobs and generally reliable -- or who are using drugs of various sorts in defiance of what the world wants for them, mostly to good effect. As a consequence, I'm not particularly judgy about drug use.

I tend to assume that if you are using drugs, you have a good reason and you don't need to justify it to me. I have fantasies that someday no drugs will be illegal and we will have more enlightened means for relating to drug use than our current rubrics.

I will note that I tend to not get seriously involved with people who drink heavily or use drugs. I feel like I need to say that because I attract all kinds of weirdness from people who read things I say on the internet.

The reality is that I am allergic to marijuana, I have serious respiratory issues, so I want nothing to do with a smoker, and I'm terrible at lying, so I want nothing to do with anyone taking illegal drugs. I would be a huge liability and this would not end well and I don't want to land in jail as an accessory.

So while I absolutely have sympathy for "it sucks to be you" scenarios in which illicit drugs have, so far, proven to be the best answer you have managed to find for your issues, that doesn't mean I want you close to me. Thanks.


Last Dance with Mary Jane, one last chance to kill the pain

UPDATE:
Just out of curiosity, I pulled up a calculator. Adjusted for inflation, $10k in the early 1980s would be somewhere between $25k and $31k these days. Wow. That's a LOT of dough.