Citation: Wookie. "No Such Thing as a Free Drug: An Experience with Inhalants - Gasoline (exp26406)". Erowid.org. Jul 29, 2006. erowid.org/exp/26406
Our understanding of the literature is that there is no such thing as safe recreational use of volatile solvents, aerosols and other street inhalants : their psychoactive effects are inseparable from nerve and organ damage. We have chosen to include these reports to help document the real world use of inhalants, but their inclusion is not intended to imply that they are anything but dangerous.]
I grew up in a small farming town in America where it seemed that huffing was a rite of passage. Nearly 75% of the crowd I hung out with had experimented with inhalants by the age of 13. The most commonly abused inhalant was gasoline. Before I started experimenting with alcohol, pot, psychedelics, etc, I was a gas can man.
Gas produces a 'drunk rush'. My body fights it for the first few breaths and then I can feel my lungs open, my blood vessels dilate, and my body lighten. The feeling is slightly similar to going from 0-10 drinks in a few seconds, excepting for the differences in mood between gas and alcohol. I found in general my mood to be somber and introspective on gasoline, although this may attributed to my usual setting...in a garage, by myself, with slower music playing.
My experiences had produced mainly the common audio beeping hallucination (this seemed to be common to a majority of abusers in my hometown), as well as the general 'electric blue' patterning that a few of my friends dubbed 'kinetics' while in the depths of a binge.
Probably around my 4th or 5th experience with gasoline was particularly memorable. I was sleeping on a couch in the garage at the time, due to a visit by out of town family for a few weeks. While bored one night trying to fall asleep, I figured I was going to grab that gas can and huff until something more happened. I began breathing out of our red metal gas can with a fury and purpose. The kinetics and beeping were becoming intense, too intense.
I had probably been going at if for an hour or so. The beeping was becoming higher in pitch, and the beeps faster as well. There was a physical discomfort that was directly correlated with the pitch of the beeping. I was not to be deterred though, and kept my mouth to that can. It was sometime not long after the beeping became slightly painful that I stopped paying attention to my visual input (for lack of a better description). I was so focused on the audio qualities of the experience that I let my mind block all else out.
Then ...BANG... the sound changed into a atari-esque crash and burn sound. This was an immense relief. But then things became very strange as I began to seem myself as a glowing orange bird. The experience gets very trippy and a tad personal from here on in, so the description will end. Best to describe it all-in-all as mystically terrifying.
When I regained visual input, I was laying in a pool of gasoline on the garage floor. My skin burned and my breath stank. And I kept huffing. I was able to hide my problem the next day with a cover story about fixing the lawnmower while I couldn't sleep.
This should have been enough to end my huffing habits, but it fed them like, well, gas on a fire.
Over the next months my habit spiraled out of control. By the time I quit I was using various inhalants about 12 times a day, including first thing in the morning, huffing myself to sleep, and keeping scotch guard in the night stand in case I awoke at night.
Most of the experiences were mundane...just to achieve the rush. Any time the experience would get out of hand, mainly from a familiar sound, would trigger paranoia. Sometimes enough to make me literally run screaming. To cover for my habit, I was constantly lying to my family to cover for the smell. And at this point, I was still a kid. This habit made me a pro at lying to my family which is a skill I wish I never would have developed. This may be the worst part of the experience.
When I finally decided to quit, little did I know this would entail some awful withdrawal pains for about 2 weeks. Quitting was hard physically but not hard mentally. After nearly getting caught huffing gas on the job, I knew it was time to stop. But my first few 'relapses' were all due to the withdrawal pains...which could be stopped by huffing.
This stuff has permanently altered my mind and vision. The 'kinetics' never totally went away, and are fully a part of my life, responding to stimulus like an annoying little pet. The reactions to sounds still persist as well. It can be pretty embarrassing trying to explain to a new girlfriend why I have to leave running because a bus 'sounds scary'. An in addition, my right eye has some vision damage from a mishap with some Scotch Gaurd.
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