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!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Back to Brushwood

I'M REALLY INTO THESE BRUSHWOOD DOGGIES now. Even the sign 柴 "shiba" in 柴犬 shiba-inu has a little brushwood tree, a 木 ki, in it. Put two trees together 林 and you get a wood. Three trees make a Japanese forest 森.

Shiba-inus remind me of HM the Queen's cogis:

Originally I wanted a giant wolf-like 秋田犬 Akita-inu. They look like huge furry shiba-inus. They're used in Japan as police dogs...

Little and Large: haven't they got furry ears!


Grrrr: I wrote this crap earlier and just wanted to save it, but blogger wasn't having that, so you get it. I'm sorry....

I found an interesting book down the library called You Don't Have To Be Famous To Have Manic Depression by Jeremy Thomas and Tony Hughes

They make some perceptive points about addiction:

Nicotine patches no more match up to the early morning hit of the first cigarette ... than swallowing a dose of methadone matches up to jacking up a decent dose of smack. Nicotine patches and methadone have a lot in common. They keep addicts off the streets, stop them injecting/inhaling, and keep them in thrall to their drug of choice.

There's a good section on schizophrenia, though why on earth anyone with bipolar, which used to be called manic-depressive psychosis, needs an explanation of what it's like to be mad is beyond me. Lots of people with bipolar type 1 hear voices, though you wouldn't know that from reading this book.

With a brain prone to schizophrenia come accompanying talents and insights. For example, some people with schizophrenia have an almost uncanny way of sensing how other people are feeling. If the gift of manic depression is energy, the gift of schizophrenia is sensitivity.

That's my problem. I feel too sensitive, most of the time. Heroin is a psychic blocker: it made life very much more comfortable because I no longer felt too much.

On diagnosis:

To be diagnosed a manic depressive goes to the very core of who you are as a person. It is difficult to feel good about a diagnosis that reaches into your very soul. Furthermore there are no external signs to mark the condition out as special, to get the ordinary sympathy for illness or to provide even a hint of what you experience. Suddenly, medication becomes a permanent part of daily routine. Doctors and psychiatrists become privy to every personal fact andableto judge each personal experience...

Depression is the wages of mania. Lack of energy reflects exhausted mental batteries left for dead after the multi-millennial light-shattering firework display that was the preceeding days and weeks.

It is doubtful whether the brain ever truly recovers from an episode of mania; the world never looks the same again.


When I glance over recent posts and see statements like: I cannot imagine anything that would make life worth living, I wonder if people understand what I was getting at. I meant I look to the "future" and see nothing. I cannot imagine living as some supposedly functioning independent, successful individual. Because I never did. I did jobs, but the only ones I could get were very low-key compared to the ones my grandmother thought I should have been doing. Then again my grandmother had this idea that being clever somehow got you a good job. It doesn't. Employers are looking for people full of confidence and bullshit, which I wasn't. Which is how I ended up in jobs supposedly "beneath" me. I just wish I'd gone for something I truly enjoyed and done graphic design or painting and decorating. Lots of graphic designers have been put out of busiess by the ready availability of design software, meaning small businesses just do it for themselves. There's still work for painter-decorators, just not as much of it. I'm not qualified for any of this (you don't need qualifications, do you?)

Did you know the suicide rate in manic depression is around 20% compared to around 10% for normal depression.

That's because on top of the depression, manic-depressives are suffering from something akin to hangover syndrome: when you look back to things you did in the exalted state and ask yourself: what on eart was I thinking? My Mum knows someone who lost her house because she gambled everything by hiring out an enormous warehouse with nothing at all to put in it. The woman had thought she was on the way to becoming a multibillionaire business success. She knows someone else who got manic and randomly went calling on people up the street, inviting himself into their houses for Teletubby tea and trotterdonkey Sunday roast. See that's what people do. Then they come down and have to face the consequences of being high: bad debts, malaria, repatriation costs, veneareal diseases and it's all too much. No wonder they want to commit suicide. Talking of malaria, I know someone who pretended to have schizophrenia so he didn't have to work (which annoys me, because it makes me think I should be living in a cardboard box. The government keep saying they want to cut all sick scroungers off benefits. So what are they going to do? If the government get their way, there will be over a million sick and disabled people living on the streets. When that does happen, I hope they feel proud of themselves.

Anyway, this person who pretended to have schizophrenia had a brother who was indeed a manic depressive, who married a Thai bride, not by looking in a catalogue, but by actually flying to Thailand and falling in love in a remote village where he and his wife lived happily in a thatched hut. Until malaria swept through the village and nearly killed everyone.

Strange thing about Pretending to have Schizophrenia Guy was: he most definitely WAS extremely neurotic. He just wasn't psychic-psychotic the way schizophrenics are.


Sorry about all that.

I had a tired day. Got up. Went chemist. Scored an ineffectual tiny bit of heroin.

Waste of time. I've only the last dregs of a habit remaining.

I bumped into someone this morning with a carrier bag full of chocolate. He'd shoplifted from a supermarket ~ an entire sehf-load and was about to sell it on. How dumbfoundingly naive I used to be! Not realizing that when a small shop mysteriously stocked up out of the blue on brand-name headache pills, batteries or fairly traded chocolate it often meant they'd bought it from somebody who had pillaged Sainsbury's!

If I were a doggie I'd look like this sleeping...


Spindrift said...

You are a sensitive and gentle soul Gledwood.

'It is doubtful whether the brain ever truly recovers from an episode of mania; the world never looks the same again.'

I guess there are medications to rid oneself of mania.

Are there any instances of people who take medications and don't have mania, being happier with their lives, I wonder, than they were before when they didn't take medications and had the mania.

Nice fluffy Japanese dogs, they are very popular in Japan, I've seen a lot of them on TV recently.

I think when I learn Japanese I might be coming to you for lessons.

I hope you are well,

Safe Journey


Spindrift said...

Dear Gledwood, I re-read over what I posted and while I'm not going to delete it, I wanted to apologise. I didn't realise when I first wrote it that I had written the word 'rid', it just sounds all wrong. I think that someone with mania in their lives might find that the desirable and a life without it not desirable. I think I was more curious to know if people live well without it once they have it. I know with my anxiety I want to 'rid' myself of that. It has ruled me and my life for too long and because of its affects I want it banished. Anyway, I hope you are well. Paul

Gledwood said...

I had anxiety every day for 2 or 3 years and it was awful. I always think of depression as a lack of energy, anxiety as energy misplaced (going inwards, clenching round the heart) and mania a huge excess, shining outwards.

I didn't realize misplaced energy is the foundation philosophy of Chinese medicine. Maybe I should try that. I certainly agree with the "energy" philosphy. I used to have chronic fatigue syndrome (I still have symptoms, just not as bad) and that's energy badly misplaced. It felt much worse than depression.

What he means in that mania quote is that mania addles the brain in a way nobody can really explain.

I looked up "delirious mania" and found out it still happens today and people still die directly of the illness. Which intrigues me as I went manic enough to feel literally that my brain was somehow massively overheated to the point where it could no longer produce thoughts and just produced random nonsense. I think what happened to me was called "catatonia" which means crazed excitement as much as it means stupor. Repeating the same syllables over and over is considered a catatonic symptom and that's what I did. I only wanted to know what it was so bad because I felt I'd gone behind my brain's welcome screen and seen error messages most people don't get to read. That's the explanation I would give. What annoys me is that something that must happen quite a lot is NOWHERE described firsthand online, as if people who go over the edge cannot remember it. Well I remember and I want to make sense of it.

If you look at that Stephen Fry video posted yesterday where he's talking to an Aussie woman he says of all the people he interviewed with bipolar, if they were offered the opportunity to press a button not to have it, only two of his interviewees would press it. The rest preferred being bipolar (but on meds), in most cases....

Spindrift said...

'energy misplaced', anxiety, yes very much, it has crippled my life, in many ways. When I was young I suffered from derealisation that had me climbing the walls. I still can feel it lurking in my backgroud.

I think you are very insightful, sounds like you have much to learn also, and much to teach.

I watched the Stephen Fry clips you posted, he's great, I saw his 2 part show he did on bi-polar a while ago.

The Australian interviewer is Jennifer Byrne, she narrated 'we can be heroes', which was popular in Australia.

All the best


Gattina said...

I see you are still into japonese. My friend's son also switched from chinese to japonese, must be in fashion, lol !
It's never too late to learn something else, why don't you put your energy of Japanese learning into wegdesign or something creative, bi polar people are often very good artists and very creative too !

Merle said...

Hi Gleds ~~ I see you are still keen on the Japanese language - it looks
a very difficult one to learn, although they say English is the hardest. I am sorry you are not sleeping well again.
Thanks for your comments and good wishes for my recovery which is going
quite well. The rain over there sounds depressing, but if it is needed, I guess it is OK. That book about Melbourne had the January temps wrong. They are usually in 60s and 70s F overnight
That is our Summer. Now June overnight is about 1 C about 33 F
As for the spiders and snakes, I
guess they hide away. I am 77 years old and have never seen a
funnel-web, have seen a few redbacks. It would be 20 years since I saw a snake and in my whole life would only have seen
5 or 6. So there is not as many as Poms believe.. Take care my friend
and keep up with the Japanese if it
makes you feel good. Love, Merle.

John said...

Hey up Gleds, how do,

Hope you're well and all that - have you seen Shane's new site?


fiction/short stories - really pretty good.


Gledwood said...

Spindrift: have you tried giving up caffeine? I switched to decaffeinated tea completely for several years and my anxiety completely went away.

I now drink caffeinated but only very occasionally. I think it was making me more manic when I was "overexcited" hmmmmmmm.

I used to get a strong feeling of unreality. I remember my useless counsellor saying "it feels like this white mist is swallowing you up"... one of the most unhelpful things anyone's ever said to me.

One night nearly 20 years ago I had this hallucination where I shrank down into a microscopic dot. I ended up in the shower, trying touse hot water to make me feel real again. Not good.

I don't think my depersonalization (it wasn't really derealization, it was the opposite) was anxiety related as such. It didn't really bother me in an anxious type way. It just made me feel really unreal and peculiar, know what I mean.....

.... most of the socalled psychiatric symptoms I get aren't inherently unpleasant. More disabling than bad feeling. Anxiety is the one I hate most by a long way, followed by depression and paranoia. The other ones don't really bother me and I tend to miss them when they go. It annoys me slightly when people assume the symptoms must be horrible just because they're "illness" but they're not horrible eg hallucinations are like free entertainment. People spend money on drugs in order to hallucinate so I'm not going to complain for getting them free.

Irony is: there's not one drug I actually like any more, except heroin. If I can kick that one to touch I'll be genuinely drugfree. Sleeping pills I don't count as drugs as I don't consider sleeping to be drug abuse.

Gattina: I would love to learn web design. If I could find out where to study I'd go for it!

Merle: you're Australian and you've never seen a funnel web! I remember when you said you'd never seen a mouse spider either. The real nasties seem to live up the East Coast from Sydney to Cairns. Exactly the stretch of Australia I'd choose if I lived there. I'd love to live in Cairns.

I find Japanese writing a source of endless fascination. Especially as it's Chinese in origin and fits the Japanese language in an unweildy way, the same way it would fit English....

It's ONE degree out there?! No wonder you're cold!!

John: I've seen that site. Something to do with bubblegum isn't it?.... Thanks :-)



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