Citation: speedracer. "Three Years and Still Going Strong: An Experience with Methylphenidate, Dextroamphetamine & Amphetamine (exp3695)". Erowid.org. Dec 25, 2001. erowid.org/exp/3695
In retrospect, I realize that my interest in and resulting dependance on speed started when I was prescribed Ritalin for ADHD. In 10th grade, my pediatrician (who also was a psychiatrist) decided that medication was what I needed to be successful in school, and wrote out a prescription for me. His instructions to me were to start off by taking 5mg in the morning and increase my dosage by 5mg every 4 hours until I felt the effect. At 25mg, I decided that I was feeling the effects of the drug and told him so. I was given a prescription of 25mg every 4 hours, three times a day.
Immediately I noticed what I now look forward to everytime I take speed. In class, I was suddenly focused on whatever I needed to do. I also became very talkative and excited and had an all encompassing sense of well-being, and those parts scared me. At that age, I had never even smoked a cigarette or had a drink let alone do any sort of 'drugs'. I wasn't comfortable with having something from outside of me make me feel good. But as time passed, I began to look forward to the onset of my medicine.
My grades showed no improvement despite my medication, and I was sent to an educational psychologist. After a battery of tests and a number of one-on-one sessions, I was diagnosed with a learning disability known as Executive Dysfuntion. Basically, instead of reversing things like a dyslexic might do, I simply loose the order altogether. I lack any sense of organization. They decided that the only recourse was to send me to boarding school, and for 11th grade, I was on my way to rural New Hampshire, to 'learn how to learn'.
I was very upset about the move and my anxiety disorder and depression kicked in full steam. In New Hampshire, I became even more sullen and withdrawn. And the fact that the total population of my school was 100 students didn't help at all. I was never a very social person, and being at a small school compounded all the social issues I already was dealing with. But one person, someone very popular on campus, decided to befriend me. This guy was from Maryland, as was I, and we shared a number of similar interests and associations back home. One october evening in 1997, I was spending the night in his room. The Dorm Parent came by to drop off my weekends' worth of medication and he asked me what I took. I told him and he asked me to give it to him. He proceeded to crush one of the 20mg tablets and made a line out of it and sniffed it up his nose. I was aghast. I had seen my uncle do this a few years earlier and had told on him for it. Yet here was my friend, doing the same thing.
He crushed up another 20mg pill and made another line. Then he gave me his rolled up dollar. I didn't know what to do. By this time, I had tried exactly one cigarette, and had been drunk once, both of which I regretted horrible and vowed I would never do again. But for some reason I felt the needed to do this, if only because it might secure the friendship I had made, and possibly help me make new ones. I bent over and sniffed the powder up my nose. The resulting effect was everything I looked forward to when I took my medicine the normal way, only that much greater. That night, I wrote a full 15 page short story, a task I had never been able to complete in the past. I tried it again several more times, and was amazed that suddenly I could become the intelligent, well spoken, mannered person my family and my doctors told me I really was. I was hooked.
It became a ritual. At first it was every weekend, then it was every day. It got to the point where I actually on three occasions, stole my entire prescription (it was sent directly to me, and I was supposed to hand it over to the nurse) and lied about ever getting it in the first place. I was able to pull it off there, without any problem. Apparently everyone was more than willing to believe whatever I said. This went on for the whole year I spent there, but I promised myself I would never do it once I got home.
Bullshit. I think I went three days back in Maryland before I started bumping Ritalin again. At first, I would do it when no one was home, and then I would go out and hang out with my friends. Then I would do it when no one was looking and I could grab a few pills out of the bottle. Eventually, I would sneak upstairs every night and take as many as I could and go back to my room and bump them all night long. At around that time, a friend of mine was complaining that he had been put on a script' of 5mg dexadrine but he didn't want to take any of it. I had done alot of research on various forms of speed and knew what dexadrine was, and seized the opportunity. He gave me his whole prescription and I entered a whole new level of speed use. This was the first time I actually stayed up for the whole evening and went around and functioned the next day. My first real binge was a three day long event where I cataloged all the effects of sleep deprivation. I began to get hallucinations of birds flying overhead, feelings of people in the same room as me when I was alone, and the beginnings of paranoia. I used up the entire dexadrine prescription within a week. Then I went back to my Ritalin and went on from there. Then I entered my senior year of High School.
I don't remember much of 12th grade. The vast majority was spent in an incoherent, paranoid sleep-dep stupor. But I do remember a large amount of overwhelming depression and an inability to understand what exactly was the reason I was doing worse than ever in school (I also remember figuring out that if I stayed up all night the night before a test, I did remarkably better than if I slept at all). Speed was supposed to make me a better person, not take away what little scholastic and social ability I had to start with. I barely graduated, and made absolutely no college plans. This caused alot of contention within my family. I have a 165 IQ, and I couldn't do anything with it. Thus started the family problems.
At the last minute I enrolled in the local Community College. I was able to stay clean for about 17 days (before and during the semester) before the need for speed overcame all. As soon as I started using it again, I stopped going to class. I was too physically spent to move most of the time, and the rest I was too depressed to care. I attended class for one week, and failed miserably.
I began to think I might have a problem around December 1999. In January, on a visit to a friend's family in Vermont, I got a phone call from my parents. They were very upset at finding recent Ritalin prescription bottles in my room with large amounts of pills missing (I would go through a month's prescription in a week at most). They were under the impression that I had stopped taking my medicine. I told them that I simply had gone about getting my meds without their knowledge or consent since I turned 18 (in reality, I had done everything I could to hide the medicine from my parents). But I knew I had to do something about this. It had gone way too far.
I checked out Narcotics Anonymous a week later and officially made my first attempt to stop using speed. The problem with that was I had a very early curfew (because of all the family drama resulting from speed use) and I wasn't able to go to meetings regularly. I broke down within the first three days and detailed everything to my parents, explaining exactly why I needed to be out later than my curfew. That came as a very large blow to them, because that had no idea that I had ever touched ANYTHING (I see the denial now, all the missing pills, the stolen prescriptions. They even found the cleaved pen I used to bump, with powder visible inside the tube, but disregarded it all). It was a very emotional evening. I promised them with everything in me that I would never touch another substance again, and I honestly believed it myself. I stayed clean for 15 days.
Today is October 9, 2000, 7:33 am. My parents still think that I am in NA and clean, but the fact of the matter remains that I haven't, in three years, gone for more than 17 days without speed in my system. This year, I began to experiment with Adderall, and as I write this I'm on a 60mg oral and 20mg nasal dosage of the shit. And I introduced another person to the horrible pleasures of speed last night (he just left to try to go to sleep. The joke's on him, huh?) Im not even quite sure why I'm writing this at all, because despite all the things I've said here, and despite the horrible paranoia, hallucinations, malnutrition (though you wouldn't know it if you saw me), arrythmia, binge smoking, a number a new beginnings in NA, and whatever else I've encountered as a result of taking speed, if you were to talk to me face to face, you would never know I harbored a single negative thought about my drug of choice. I've lied, cheated, stolen, used people, and I still go back no matter what. And I still don't know why.
On Monday, I go to visit a new psychiatrist. I plan on getting a prescription for at least Ritalin, but I'm trying for Adderall (even though it caused the worst hangover of all the stuff I've ever tried). And I'm telling myself I'm going to use it right this time, not to get off. But I know deep down the real reason I want it. And it looks like once again, nothing is going to change.
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