HAMSTERS & HEROIN: Not all junkies are purse-snatching grandmother-killing psychos. I'm keeping this blog to bear witness to that fact.


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I used to take heroin at every opportunity, for over 10 years, now I just take methadone which supposedly "stabilizes" me though I feel more destabilized than ever before despite having been relatively well behaved since late November/early December 2010... and VERY ANGRY about this when I let it get to me so I try not to.

I was told by a mental health nurse that my heroin addiction was "self medication" for a mood disorder that has recently become severe enough to cause psychotic episodes. As well as methadone I take antipsychotics daily. Despite my problems I consider myself a very sane person. My priority is to attain stability. I go to Narcotics Anonymous because I "want what they have" ~ Serenity.

My old blog used to say "candid confessions of a heroin and crack cocaine addict" how come that one comes up when I google "heroin blog" and not this one. THIS IS MY BLOG. I don't flatter myself that every reader knows everything about me and follows closely every single word every day which is why I repeat myself. Most of that is for your benefit not mine.

This is my own private diary, my journal. It is aimed at impressing no-one. It is kept for my own benefit to show where I have been and hopefully to put off somebody somewhere from ever getting into the awful mess I did and still cannot crawl out of. Despite no drugs. I still drink, I'm currently working on reducing my alcohol intake to zero.

If you have something to say you are welcome to comment. Frankness I can handle. Timewasters should try their own suggestions on themselves before wasting time thinking of ME.

PS After years of waxing and waning "mental" symptoms that made me think I had depression and possibly mild bipolar I now have found out I'm schizoaffective. My mood has been constantly "cycling" since December 2010. Mostly towards mania (an excited non-druggy "high"). For me, schizoaffective means bipolar with (sometimes severe)
mania and flashes of depression (occasionally severe) with bits of schizophrenia chucked on top. You could see it as bipolar manic-depression with sparkly knobs on ... I'm on antipsychotic pills but currently no mood stabilizer. I quite enjoy being a bit manic it gives the feelings of confidence and excitement people say they use cocaine for. But this is natural and it's free, so I don't see my "illness" as a downer. It does, however, make life exceedingly hard to engage with...

PPS The "elevated mood" is long gone. Now I'm depressed. Forget any ideas of "happiness" I have given up heroin and want OFF methadone as quick as humanly possible. I'm fed up of being a drug addict. Sick to death of it. I wanna be CLEAN!!!

Attack of the Furry Entertainers!

Attack of the Furry Entertainers!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Back on the (legal) drugs ...(!)

I DECIDED to go back on antipsychotics tonight.

I keep hearing voices in my head jabbering in Northern accents. Jim Royle saying "my arse!" over and over. They're not hallucinations, they're kind of really loud thoughts from outside. But they didn't happen when I was sane. And I know they're supposed to mean I'm mentally deranged. The pills can block them out.

Also the risperidone has some sort of blockading effect on the heroin hit. It doesn't stop the nasty stuff working but it somehow makes taking it not seem worthwhile. So that's a good thing for me.

The reason I stopped taking it was that I was feeling incredibly flat and I thought risperidone was responsible. Then I began feeling depressed on top of that and risperidone is not a mood stabilizer as such. It did make me feel a lot less manic, but I'm not manic any more. So I wasn't sure whether or not to continue with risperidone. So I stopped it. And slumped into a pit of depression.

I was remembering what happened in full-on mania. My brain did everything bar melt on me and drip out of my ears down my neck, hissing, popping and fizzing as it drooled in luminous fingers down my back! Not good. The in-between hypomanic stage was good. That went on for several weeks and prompted my doctor to write to my GP telling of my "elevated mood". The only other detail I remember from that letter was "paranoid ideation".

My Mum wrote to me threatening that I'd get chucked out on the streets. My head was confused enough that I kept thinking she wanted me out on the streets. Or thought I was supposed to go and live there. She thinks that because my doctor mentioned schizophrenia I must have at least 2 personalities. She says some course she went on many years ago taught her this. Whoever taught that course needs shooting between the eyes. I only have one personality. That person might be quite warped and I don't like it very much. But it's only one person. If I could turn myself into somebody else I'd be overjoyed.

Originally I wanted a manic episode back. This had as much to do with being depressed and despairing of ever being "normal" as actually wanting to be so-called "ill". I didn't see much choice in the matter. So I wished the mania would hurry up and come back.

But now I'm feeling out some dimly-lit middle way that might somehow lead to happiness.

I woke up this morning with my head still dreaming. The Royle Family were having a loud conversation in between my ears as I wondered what on earth I was supposed to do. Life seemed so overwhelming. Then I told myself I just had to keep clearing and cleaning my house. Every day. Do a bit, every day. Don't think. Don't think too much. Don't think about it. I only think when I'm unhappy. Unhappy thoughts. So don't think. Just do it. Then when it's done you can think up something else.

So that's my plan. I've been spending hours asleep. Yes the sleep pattern has come back. I slept all afternoon, then went to bed around ten at night and slept through till nine in the morning.

So here's my plan for today. I'm still fighting unhappiness (if the truth be told). And if the truth be told further, I could do with some of that hypomania back: heightened mood and energy. Trust me to get it back only for one bloody day! That has happened before. I costed out how much it would've cost me to go that long on cocaine: £2-300. So that's a good coupleof hundred pounds worth of free high. You've got to look on the bright side.

I'm wondering how Anna Grace is. She was detoxing off heroin in her parents' empty home last I heard. Only her tiny terrier Elle for company. Then she started going manic. But her mood cycles quickly so she's either stuck to the ceiling or feeling a bit down or very down by now. Being as no post has appeared since Friday I'd assume she's down rather than up.

She's taking all these meds for bipolar disorder and they still don't seem to sort her out. Taking an Addreall (dexamphetamine) prescription from another doctor might have somethig to do with this. My own doctor said taking speed on top of bipolar was highly unadvisable. (I only asked this purely for Anna's sake; I haven't bought any speed since 1993). O yeah apart from Dexedrines purchased on the street in 1999. But I'm not into speed. It never agreed with me. Sent a clinically depressed me into comedowns so bad I could barely function at all, at the worst of it. Then the last time I did it, having found a great lump of it at a bus stop, a few lines taken on Monday evening had me speeding away into Wednesday and beyond! That was several years ago when I was still living in a crackhouse. Drugs like that and me don't mix so I stay away from them. So I don't know why Anna takes it. Something to do with an attention-deficit diagnosis as a child. ADHD and bipolar are said to present fairly similarly in children, with bipolar being more severe. She was taking uppers in her childhood (amphetamine and ritalin are supposed to calm down hyperactive children)... then surprise surprise had severe mood swings in adulthood. In fact 50% of bipolar 1s have a known history of substance use disorders. As do 50% of schizophrenics. So drug-use and mental illness are inextricably intertwined. You're only diagnosed after several weeks of symptoms while drug-free.

Well it's my goal to break away from all of this. I'm fed up of being arguably mentally unwell. And unarguably a drug addict. I'm trying to focus my head on more positive things. I'm pondering how I might make a book out of Valerie, the China White Heroin Queen of Australia. She has plenty to say for herself. If I can get a 300 page manuscript out of her, I'm sure Harper Collins would be delighted... wish me and Valerie luck with the inspiration..!

PS I just read this back and it looks like I don't know what the hell I want. I want to be OK and I want to write some amazing books that make me a fortune. And I don't want to be addicted to any substance at all. So those are my goals in life.

PPS I just went down Morrisons for corned beef and cheese coleslaw. It’s my first tin of corned beef in three or four days so I’m doing really well on that score. I was hoping for the Royle Family to accompany me down in my head. But they didn’t. Deserted me just when I wanted them most? Does anyone else get that? Voices in their head repeating catchphrases, telling jokes? I only remember it happening to me after I’d been in the nuthouse at least once. The first 2 times I only stayed in a week, then they chucked me out. I’m scared if I ever go in again they won’t want to let me go. But I could do with a little holiday sometimes. “A retreat” as Bipolar Becky once called it. I don’t want to go in the nuthouse now, but if I get offered it again I think I’m going back in. My head is too confused about what I’m doing with my life. That “breakdown”, if you want to call it that, really threw me on my head. I only use phrases like “mental illness” because it sounds so insightful and grown-up. Really I didn’t feel ill at all. I felt like finally I was in touch with my real self. I was in a really good mood. And the world felt unreal. Which is all, if you think about it, a pretty idyllic state to be in. You could argue that medication has ruined my life and brought me back to a sallow reality. Like waking up in the bath of near-freezing cold water you tried to drown yourself in, floating in a white haze, miserable and still alive. That’s how I see reality. And I want a better life than that.

SO COME ON you nutters! (Or normal people. I heard normal people hear voices too, there's even an international Voice Hearers movement for those who do; link given below...) I want to know whether you get voices in your heads? Or outside your heads? Or both? If so where and how loud? Do they come in from outside? Or do they hover in the air floating? What do they say? What do they sound like? When did they start? How often do they come to you? And is it supposed to be to do with any sort of so-called illness? If so what label? And do you wear the label round your neck like a Jim’ll Fix It medal? Someone I knew with a borderline personality disorder used to do that and I saw other people seemingly confusing diagnosis with identity. Put me off divulging anything of note to a psychiatrist for years, did that.

Hearing voices movement: Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hearing_Voices_Movement ~ with links to national orgaizations
Hearing Voices Network (UK) http://www.hearing-voices.org
Interational Movement: http://www.intervoiceonline.org

01:01 hrs. I hope Anna Grace is all right. Not a peep from her since Friday....


trish said...

may i ask what you do on a day to day basis? i am guessing you haven't got a job so what does a 'typical' day look like for you? on one side i am not surprised that you have 'manic' phases if you have no (working) routine... is it not boring to do 'nothing' all day everyday?

Gledwood said...

I go down the methadone chemists as early as possible and then do nothing then go to bed. It's very boring.

I don't know what to do any more. I used to have some sense of direction even though I was on drugs. Now it's gone.

I don't know what to do except clean my house. That's my one activity I'm getting involved in. Sounds sad I know but at least that will be something I've achieved that is really important. The clear-out is LONG OVERDUE!

I have far too much stuff ~ compulsive hoarding ~ that I really need to get rid of!

Baino said...

Nope no voices. Just some irritating tinitus. Getting old I guess and my ears ring all the time.

Z said...

No love, I've never heard voices. But I've never had any reason to think I've got a mental illness and I've never taken drugs.

trish said...

because i can imagine that not doing much all day leads so some kind of depression. could you not get involved in some volunteer projects? like doing gardening, being outside in the sun and a bit of exercise is so little that can make you feel a great deal better. maybe there are things out there that you would really enjoy but that you dont know about. i am not sure whether London has that many opportunities as Brighton and Berlin have where i live but you should find out :)

Gledwood said...

Z: good for you!! I think it was drugs pulled the trigger on a loaded gun. Some guns are loaded with rocksalt, some with shot, some have anti-aircraft missiles. I'm something between a shotgun and a surface to air missile, ho ho

Trish: I was looking into working in a hospice. Some people thought that was a bit morbid. It was more the painkillers issue (everyone being on morphine/etc) that put me off than the death issue...

... I really need some ideas of what to do.

I've worked in an Oxfam shop before; they traditionally sell second hand clothes and also books, but also stock fairly traded craft items and food from 3rd world countries, so I priced them and did the displays.

I really need to get my references sorted out. I haven't got a referee at the moment! Not sure you're supposed to use drugs workers and psychiatrists but they know me best.

Tomorrow I think I'm going to post up asking for ideas of what volunteering work I could do...

I've done gardening in France. We were pruning a river for 3 weeks in Central France and that was volutary work. Had a fantastic time...

Anonymous said...

How about getting your book writing finished - oh, and check on your emails that haven't been read/answered yet...

Gledwood said...


Valerie has so much 2 say I'll hopefully get 2 books out of her ha ha!

Spindrift said...

How is Valerie downunder? How is her mood? Does she get manic, or is she always high? Does she ever come down?

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

What's a normal person?

Sarcastic Bastard said...

I do not like corned beef. It's the smell.

I love you. Hope you are taking care.


Syd said...

No voices here. But I am not a drug taker and stick to those prescriptions from the doctor. I have heard that those who get busy, get better. It might help to do something beside focus on yourself.

Anonymous said...

If you like dogs, you could be a dog walker for those people who are at work all day but want to keep pets. That combines my three great loves; animals (esp. dogs), walking and being outdoors. You also get to meet lots of people out doing the same thing. P.S. I love your honesty and dark humour, been reading your blog for ages.
From Kiwigirl



Heroin Shortage: News

If you are looking for the British Heroin Drought post, click here; the latest word is in the comments.

Christiane F

"Wir, Kinder vom Bahnhoff Zoo" by "Christiane F", memoir of a teenage heroin addict and prostitute, was a massive bestseller in Europe and is now a set text in German schools. Bahnhoff Zoo was, until recently, Berlin's central railway station. A kind of equivalent (in more ways than one) to London's King's Cross... Of course my local library doesn't have it. So I'm going to have to order it through a bookshop and plough through the text in German. I asked my druggieworker Maple Syrup, who is Italiana how she learned English and she said reading books is the best way. CHRISTIANE F: TRAILER You can watch the entire 120-min movie in 12 parts at my Random blog. Every section EXCEPT part one is subtitled in English (sorry: but if you skip past you still get the gist) ~ to watch it all click HERE.

To See Gledwood's Entire Blog...

DID you find my blog via a Google or other search? Are you stuck on a post dated some time ago? Do you want to read Gledwood Volume 2 right from "the top" ~ ie from today?
If so click here and you'll get to the most recent post immediately!

Drugs Videos

Most of these come from my Random blog, which is an electronic scrapbook of stuff I thought I might like to view at some time or other. For those who want to view stuff on drugs I've collected the very best links here. Unless otherwise stated these are full-length features, usually an hour or more.

If you have a slow connexion and are unused to viewing multiscreen films on Youtube here's what to do: click the first one and play on mute, stopping and starting as it does. Then, when it's done, click on Repeat Play and you get the full entertainment without interruption. While you watch screen one, do the same to screens 2, 3 and so on. So as each bit finishes, the next part's ready and waiting.

Mexican Black Tar Heroin: "Dark End"

Khun Sa, whose name meant Prince Prosperous, had been, before his death in the mid 2000s, the world's biggest dealer in China White Heroin: "Lord of the Golden Triangle"

In-depth portrait of the Afghan heroin trade at its very height. Includes heroin-lab bust. "Afghanistan's Fateful Harvest"

Classic miniseries whose title became a catchphrase for the misery of life in East Asian prison. Nicole Kidman plays a privileged middle-class girl set up to mule heroin through Thai customs with the inevitable consequences. This is so long it had to be posted in two parts. "Bangkok Hilton 1" (first 2 hours or so); "Bangkok Hilton 2" (last couple of hours).

Short film: from tapwater-clear H4 in the USA to murky black Afghan brown in Norway: "Heroin Addicts Speak"

Before his untimely death this guy kept a video diary. Here's the hour-long highlights as broadcast on BBC TV: "Ben: Diary of a Heroin Addict". Thanks to Noah for the original link.

Some of the most entertaining scenes from Britain's top soap (as much for the poor research as anything else). Not even Phil Mitchell would go from nought to multi-hundred pound binges this fast: "Phil Mitchell on Crack" (just over 5 minutes).

Scientist lady shows us how to cook up gear: "How Much Citric?" Lucky cow: her brown is 70% purity! Oddly we never see her actually do her hit... maybe she got camera shy...

And lastly:

German documentary following a life from teenage addiction to untimely death before the age of 30. The decline in this girl's appearance is truly shocking. "Süchtig: Protokoll einer Hilflosigkeit". Sorry no subtitles; this is here for anyone learning German who's after practice material a little more gripping than Lindenstraße!

Nosey Quiz! Have you ever heard voices when you weren't high on drugs?

Manic Magic

Manic Magic

Gledwood Volume 2: A Heroin Addict's Blog

Copyright 2011 by Gledwood