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Heroin addicts bored by not scoring drugs

  1. runnerupbeautyqueen
    alg-heroin-spoon-jpg.jpg AARHUS, Denmark, March 13 (UPI) -- Heroin addicts in Denmark, who are given state-sponsored fixes, say they are bored now that they don't have to chase drugs, a non-profit group says.

    Once drug addicts end up admitted into a heroin clinic they receive twice-daily prescription doses of state-funded heroin, the Fyens Stiftstidende reported.

    Mette Guul, head of Reden Odense, a YWCA center for abused women and prostitutes in Aarhus, said many don't know how to handle their newly found free time, the Fyens Stiftstidende said.

    "The women say they are lonely, bored and do not know what to do now that they do not have to chase the drugs anymore," Guul told the newspaper.

    Guul said her facility offers several kinds of cooking classes, Internet lessons, bicycling, museum visits and crocheting which are popular with the women seeking treatment, the Copenhagen Post reported.

    Staff at the Reden heroin clinic said they also noticed more women showed up to sew or knit now that their time is not spent looking for their next fix.

    "They say they are lonely, bored and do not know what to do now that they do not have to chase the drugs anymore," Guul told Fyens Stiftstidende.



  1. Cash.Nexus
    Interesting and notable but I myself am not too surprised by the boredom of these women who would seem to have won the ultimate junkie lottery.

    State supplied med-grade heroin twice a day, without risks, hassle or hustle. Sounds perfect, but I was talking to a friend some years ago who had been involved in the Swiss project where addicts were supplied. This Swiss guy wasn't as contented as I had anticipated; he claimed the authorities might be 'doing something' to the free heroin, because it wasn't the same [as the street stuff.]

    IMO it's not the same because a large part of the thrill is in the scoring, the chase, the mission. This is what the article is saying and I agree. An assured supply of opiates/opioids takes the action out the game. Tolerance goes up and things get dull. No more drama everyday!

    Anyway...good on Denmark for doing this for the vulnerable.
  2. runnerupbeautyqueen
    I agree. I've heard so many people say things like "the first time I tried heroin I got sick, threw up, I hated it. But that went away after like 6 more times." So the logical question to ask would be "why did you keep doing it if it kept making you sick?" "Oh you know, I always idolized Kurt Cobain and Hillel Slovak (or whoever) and everyone always talks about how it's the ultimate high etc."

    So it stands to reason that a lot of what draws people to heroin is it's stigma. We want to be Kurt Cobain. We want to give the middle finger to society. All the cool and interesting people do heroin.

    Enter these programs. Suddenly heroin isn't the ultimate drug taboo. It's just a bunch of sad, sick people waiting in line to get their medicine. So not only are younger people who are exposed to these programs less likely to try heroin but the addicts who are in the program are more likely to quit because it's no longer fun or exciting or whatever adjective to do heroin anymore.

    Once you take away the taboo, the stigma, and the overall illegal outlaw/tortured artist image away from heroin people start to see it for what it really is.
  3. Willyzh
    I dunno, I saw that 60 minutes like 10 years ago about heroin clinics in Germany, and people were high functioning with jobs and healthy lives and whatnot...

    "They didn't know what to do" out of choices like 'several kinds of cooking classes, internet lessons, bicycling, museum visits and crocheting...' Seems like they identified so well with the chase of drugs and the identity (like the ^P says), that they have no idea who else they are.

    In need, yeah, sick, not likely on a maintenance program, sad, yes, by choice. Sadness is the ultimate tranquilizer.

    "'F*ck that society' that meets my every need... I just don't know how to express my sadness anymore." I can picture them saying.

    I'm sad, and no matter what you do to change it, I'll be sad anyway. Boo hoo..

    F*ck em, let em eat beans... I'd say they are seeing themselves for who THEY are- sad by choice.
  4. Cash.Nexus
    Curiosity kills cats, and this dark glamour anti-hero thing does pull a lot of (us) moths into the flame. But yeah, that is fashion, in the 'Western World'. However, smack still flys off the shelves in places that have never heard of Kurt, Keith, Crowley or Coleridge and don't get how sexy it is to be doomed and pallid.

    From Kabul to Kansas, people want to feel good, or better. And stay that way. It's in the brain chemistry, neuroscience. The brain adapts to being an addict, gets so focused, hard-wired intense. I'm not the one to explain this in proper science terms; check Memoirs Of An Addicted Brain, Marc Lewis. I haven't read it all (waiting to get it 'shared' rather than pay £$) but I'm a believer.

    Lewis seems to be aiming to reconcile the two diametrics of addiction studies: 'choosing losing' versus the 'disease' model. Not to encourage copyright infringement, but if anyone discovers this book on a share/torrent site, I'd like to hear where. Such a cool book I may actually have to buy it. If things come to such a sorry pass, I will endeavor to post a review.
  5. Dankitydankness
    So what is that? How are people seeing heroin now that they are in these programs? What is heroin really?

    Are they now seeing it more as a medicine rather than a drug to get you fucked up? Are they seeing it as a therapy or some destructive chemical?
  6. runnerupbeautyqueen
    Well from what I've read people who start on these programs are more likely to quit then people who aren't for all the reasons listed above. It stops being fun and exciting. Plus all the time they used to dedicate to running around chasing the drugs can now be put towards reconnecting with friends/family, working, taking cooking/sewing classes, etc. They start to see that they are more, their lives are more, than just getting and doing heroin. And when they decide they've had enough they probably now have that support system of friends/family/class members that they've building up while in the programs.

    As for "sick and sad" I didn't mean physically sick. If addiction is a disease then it stands to reason that people who suffer from addiction are sick.

    I was just saying that out of the people I have personally met and talked to that most of them will at least include "the stigma" when going over the list of reasons why they decided to start using. Rarely do I hear another reason as often.

    From what I've read people in the programs seem to view it as medicine. They comment on how they are free to live their lives now that they don't have to chase it. NatGeos Heroin episode of Drugs Inc talks about the heroin program if I remember correctly and interviews some of the people in it if you're interested. I think the episode is on youtube, the rest are.
  7. Ghetto_Chem
    This is a super interesting article, I can understand how some people might be bored now. Especially after doing this for years, if not decades. But I'm the complete opposite.

    I always hated the hunt, calling number after number, trying to play cool with the dealers even though your WD'ing and screaming on the inside just to hurry the fuck up. The main reason I quit was because I came to a realization that no matter what, I'd still have days where I couldn't score dope and I hated being sick. Thats probably why I love suboxone so much, and have such a problem with it. It may not get me feeling as good but even if I don't have prescription, I only have to go score 1-4 times a month.

    The only plus side to having to constantly run around to get shit, is that when your feeling really shitty and you finally find a way to grab some dope. That first hit is better than anything. But I'd trade that first hit any day for a constant supply.

    One thing that I don't understand too about these heroin programs. Usually they only give the user 2-3 shots of heroin a day. That would not be enough for me personally, maybe thats just the addict in me or whatever but I feel like I'd be withdrawaling by the time my next shot came around. Back when I did shoot up, I'd probably do it 4 times a day minimum. I guess I'd also rarely shoot up enough to the point where I'd be close to nodding, I'd do just enough to "maintain" a halfway normal composure. Maybe when you know for a fact your going to get that next shot you don't fiend as much or something.

    How much do they usually give the user for these heroin maintenance programs? Are the people functional or are they nodding/close to it?

  8. Cash.Nexus
    Been pondering something weird about the picture in the article. If the clinics are giving free pure heroin, surely they would be giving out 'cookers' too, and these women wouldn't be using dessert spoons to cook up. Also note: the handle isn't even bent level with the scoop. Which is a must IME.

    Also, the solution is bubbling and fizzing, spitting stuff out the bowl. This is supposed to be pharm-grade, which AFAIK would hardly need any flame to dissolve. Actually wouldn't the clinic just give out ampoules?

    Not saying the article isn't true...and the woman in the pic does have authentic apathy to her manicure. But something seems off... That's either a file pic or a set-up.
  9. Ghetto_Chem
    Probably just a random pic they took, not actually related to this program.

    Your right, decently pure heroin takes a flick of a lighter to get it dissolved. If you crush it up instead of leaving it in the rock form, then you probably wouldn't even need to hit it with a flame if your picky about it degrading, just let it sit for a minute or two. I used to just toss in a tiny little rock, and hit it quick with the flame, for maybe 2-3 seconds at most, to dissolve it very quickly. Its hard to remember how long exactly, but I remember that it was bad to have any bubbles form, especially if its boiling like the pic above.

    I wouldn't be surprised if the heroin they get is already in liquid form too, in an effort to break the "IV ritual".

    Also, if given in solid form, they probably would be given cookers as well... Spoons like that would be much more expensive to supply for this program.

  10. Moving Pictures
    Sorry, but really? Bored cus you don't have to hustle up money for dope and deal with shady pieces of shit all day long? Give me a break. The fucking "lifestyle" is the absolute worst thing about being addicted to heroin. I would consider it a godsend to be giving daily, guarenteed heroin and not have to worry about scoring (when I was on it).

    These women get daily heroin plus cooking, knitting, exercise class, museum visits! Holy shit dude, that's awesome. I'm sorry but if I ran this program and one of the women told me "well, I appreciate the dope and all but I'm bored that I don't have to go out and chase dope and money around all day", I'd tell her to kick rocks. Go back to the streets then if you're so bored.

    I agree addiction is a disease but when "boredom from not scoring" becomes an issue, it makes it impossible to have any sympathy for these people.

    Having to score is absolutley detestable. Anyone on a program like this should be beyond grateful, not bitching that they don't have enough to do anymore. Maybe get a job now??
  11. BitterSweet
    Isn't this similar to the idea of methadone clinics? Well, of course not exactly, but the routine seems similar. Also, going from hustling, prostituting, stealing, and whatever else every day to score is pretty time consuming and a lifestyle in its own right. It is a horrible lifestyle but I suppose it becomes as addictive as the drug, or it's like the sum is greater than the parts type of ideal. And when you finally have some normalcy and routine in life, maybe drugs start to lose their purpose, and have less effect on filling a void that brings them to use drugs in the first place. It's very good harm reduction, at least in my eyes; some sort of mix of rehab practices with some methadone program foundations.

    And I also wonder though if these two doses a day are enough to get these people in the state of fucked-up-ness they desire? Getting a nod effect going on? Or if it just provides a mild high and prevents withdrawals - how good is the heroin? Either way it seems like it desensitizes these woman to the allure of heroin; once you have it, it's less appreciated. Also, being able to know exactly when they get to dose is settling on the mind, as living day to day looking for your next fix puts a spring in your step (in a sick way) in order to prevent withdrawal at least. It is very unpredictable and it is almost like being in the jungle and hunting for your prey, and to come up dry means starving (aka withdrawing and not getting high).

    Denmark is a country that I really appreciate. Even though its societal institutions and mentality have been highly shaped by Christianity and entrenched in its society, it's now one of the world's most secularized countries (like Sweden, another leading innovate country) so religion and Christianity only have a minor and indirect role in the public life. And it's always been voted the happiest country in the world. *sigh, I'd love to live there. Perhaps an Atheist's paradise.

    Just an excellent country, admirable government and politics - this article does seem fitting to Denmark since the country has a really strong position about zero tolerance for violence against women. I've just did some research about drug use in Denmark. Eurad.net (Europe Against Drugs) is an extremely interesting information source about drug use and the practices that are being introduced. I want to list some here since I find it really relevant.

    So it says the Danish Government is launching a new drug strategy due to a dramatic increase in the number of drugs addicted and drug related overdoses. Here's some stats: estimated 33,000 drug addicts in a population of 5 million. The government plans to introduce more involuntary treatment to stop this disturbing trend.

    "In the last 4 years, the number of drug addicts has increased with 15%; 5000 new users. In 2005, the number of registered addicts was 28.000. In 2009 the number of addicts registered in Denmark had soared to 33.000. The number of addict deaths has increased by 13% in one year alone, going from 239 in 2008 to 276 in 2009".

    The Danish Government now wants to use more involuntary treatment. There's already legislation permitting involuntary treatment if the patient is pregnant, but in reality this rarely happens. Scientific evidence shows that treatment that commence by means of coercion may be as effective as voluntary treatment.

    New Drug Strategy: the government has now launched a 19 point policy for supply-reduction, prevention, treatment and rehabilitation which includes more outreach programs, treatment programs in prison and focus on mental health issues.

    The issue of injection rooms has been raised, but the Minister of Justice is adamant that this would be a mistake.

    Heroin Assisted Treatment
    "The Danish Parlament decided in 2008 to allow heroin assisted treatment. A trail project has been in existence in Copenhagen since March 2010. It is too early to make any conclusions, but this new government initiative suggests that authorities in Denmark believe that other measures must be taken in order to effectively address the disturbing increase in problem drug use."

    Definitely interesting read on the website. A good idea for a Wiki I think. Thanks for getting me interested in Denmark! lol
  12. Docta
    Yep does seem to be a bit of a first world problem and not a bad problem to have for a recovering drug addict.

    Last year I was lugging Polio vaccine over a mountain in Burma across rivers and down jungle tracks. I smile when I think of these ladies trying to find something to fill in the time between treatments, it certainly give a somewhat skewed perspective of heroin use. As you say its hard to develop sympathy for people in such privileged situations when compared to public health problems elsewhere in the world.

    An interesting story just the same.
  13. runnerupbeautyqueen
    Gosh you guys don't miss anything. Sorry, sorry. I just used a random picture because I couldn't find one that depicted bored women going on a museum visit after getting their government approved heroin. Surprisingly there's a rather limited number of those to pick from.

    I inject heroin twice a day. My morning shot gets me well enough to go about my day and my evening shot gets me high enough for my day to have been "worth it." I hear the same thing from others so I would imagine that these people get well on one and a little high on the other. I searched and couldn't find any numbers re: how much heroin they are given. I'm guessing it's like methadone and it just depends on the individual.

    I think this is normal. When something goes from being a huge part of your very existence to nothing well, you're going to have a hole there for a while. I bet the boredom is reported highest for those who have just stared the program and it declines as they spend more time doing other things.

    I also think it's important for the program to address these concerns. Loneliness is a powerful driving force and when these women say they are bored I really think they're lonely. I cam imagine it, they're recently clean (off street drugs), looking around like "wtf am I supposed to do now?" It may seem frivolous but getting them not only out of the life but into another, better, healthier life is what the program is trying to do. If they don't know how to fill that hole in their lives odds are they'll go right back to where they were, hanging out with people they should be staying away from and doing things they shouldn't.
  14. Willyzh
    In the heroin maintenance program in Germany, the users were allowed to choose their doses.

    IME getting a decent high from heroin had more to do with allowing for time between doses.... Shooting more than like 5x a day and you start to feel insatiable.

    I think these women are clinging to the identity of the street addict that they have associated with for so long- like former posters have said, the rebel, the alienated, and so on.

    I've read about Sweden being #1 for happiest people, maybe there is hope for capitalist economies governed by social democratic policies because my country is largely moving in this direction.
  15. Cash.Nexus
    Exactly so. Once the inner beast is free, it won't stay easily caged.

    IMO the coolest thing about Denmark right now is the film-maker Nicolas Winding Refn. He did Drive (2011) and Bronson (2008) both frackin awesome but you guys really want to check out The Pusher Trilogy, especially Pusher 3. I was talking to a Danish guy recently who had worked on that and he confirmed that a lot of the cast are real street. It shows. Pusher 3 gets way ill, apparently some crew suffered vibes...pretty gruesome. Anyway check it all out on IMDB.com (advice: Trilogy isn't linear series so skip Pusher 1, at least.) Word is, Nicolas is working on two more Pusher movies, set in Bangkok and Miami...wow. Bring it.

    Hey now; we junkies are never, never sorry, sorry...! It's in the rulebook, man. But really, you deserve a Newshawk commendation for bothering to search and attach a file pic to this article, which developed into a jumping thread. Congrats.
  16. kailey_elise

    I actually made a post about this last night, but I had had the tab open for too long & it told me I needed to refresh the page & when I went back the post I made was gone. *grr* I hate that.

    Anyway, the gist was, this is exactly the same problem people entering any maintenance treatment - be it heroin, methadone or buprenorphine - experience. Even people who manage complete abstinence "suffer" with this. And yes, it's the loss of your daily routine, your "structure" if you will. Lots of people seem to experience entering recovery in a similar way someone who has left an abusive partner would feel. Of *course* you know you're much better off, and you feel a LOT better, but...that 'relationship' is all you've known for many (& sometimes many many MANY) years. As awful as it was, at least you knew what to expect, and what was expected of you. Sort of staying with the devil you know, if you know what I mean.

    I have a friend who's been getting high for 10 years. She's 25 years old - by the time she reached adulthood, she became firmly entrenched in her addiction. All attempts at recovery so far have failed, IMO because she has no idea what the fuck to do with herself! She's never had to *BE* an adult before, and left to her own devices, has no clue what to do with her time.

    Yes, it's a 1st world problem, surely, but that doesn't change the fact that it *IS* a problem for her (& other people in the same position she's in), and this needs to be addressed as part of maintenance treatment. Often if you're seeking abstinence, there are programs you can go into, there's even a process for it - detox -> holding -> TC (therapeutic community) -> halfway house -> 3/4 house -> sober house

    These have various levels of monitoring & structure, and less structure as you move through the system, which is as it should be.

    However, there are very few programs that accept people on ANY kind of maintenance (this is finally starting to change. At least in Massachusetts, being on methadone or buprenorphine maintenance is considered being on a prescribed medication & treatment facilities cannot discriminate against you based upon legitimate medical treatment), who need such structured programs just as badly.

  17. ratgirldjh
    I totally agree with kailey. I was an IV H user, seller, etc. for so many years that the lifestyle was my routine and my life.

    Once I started on methadone suddenly I didn't need to sell dope, score dope, hustle or anything! For me at first it led to starting to smoke crack! I was so bored, missed the hustle, the hooking up, the whole 'scene' and at least I could still score and get high.

    Crack really wasn't my thing though and neither were the people who went with the drug so suddenly I had all day to do anything I wanted - plus money - and I had no idea what to buy or what it was I wanted to do.

    It ended with me being sad and depressed and actually sleeping from after my dose in the morning to pretty much time to go back to the clinic the next day!!!

    It took me years and a change of location, new friends and a lot of time to find other things to do and to be excited about life without the drug game.

    I chip these days after almost 12 years of staying away from H and so far have been able to maintain a distance but now I have a job, a relationship, responsibilities and other things to do to keep occupied and this has really helped me to stay out of that lifestyle so far.

    Changing your routine takes time. It is hard but once you've done something for 3 weeks it becomes habit.

    I also missed the daily visits to the methadone clinic when I finally detoxed!!! as well as the people there and the routine of dosing!

    And I do still enjoy driving around the old neighborhoods where I spent so much of my time years ago. It makes me sad though to see some of the same people year after year, still going about the same routine of hustle, scoring, etc. sigh i am feeling old
  18. usually0
    I can agree with this, to be honest, making drugs illegal makes me want to use them. Every drug ive used that wasn't weed or a psycheadelic, was simply because i had the opportunity, and i wasn't sure if id ever get that opportunity ever again..

    For other people, i think the thrill of doing illegal drugs is what sets them off, because to be honest, most illegal drugs are rather pointless highs, more boring than exciting if you ask me.
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