So, I suppose is one of those stranger posts that we get now and then. The fact of the matter is I've been in continuous touch with some of the people on this forum than I have with friends in real life, not necessarily to say that this isn't real life - we have, on some level, developed emotional bonds between a few of us. We have a tendency to notice when some of us stop posting for a while, and on occasion with question it, leading to some discussions - like when TH disappeared for a while, we all noticed, and Cheshire, despite the novelty of his typical responses, was sincere enough to make a thread to discuss it. And obviously we all realize this is the Internet, and the fact of the matter is none of us are necessarily intimate friends, but nevertheless we are one some level friends, the nice thing about which is that we never will see each other, and can be honest in a way that we normally wouldn't with other people in our lives, because will, in general, probably never actually meet in person, and the fear of judgement, or repercussion, or whatever, is largely removed. And so I would like to exploit that advantage of that reverie and post a little bit about my life. Anyway, about the main purpose of the post - I have spent the vast majority of my life addicted to one substance or another. I am, in short, a product of the 90's, when the fear of drugs became very, very prevalent in America. In school, we learned that drugs were essentially the same - there was little difference between tobacco, marijuana, alcohol, heroin, amphetamines, etc. At least, as far as the educational system was concerned, I learned that all were inherently bad and were to be avoided if one had the desire of living a good, productive life. Of course, this drug education is totally flawed, and there are very, very significant differences between all of them. At about the age of thirteen or fourteen, I started smoking weed and had a few drinks - and of course, as most people do, enjoyed them immensely. Shortly after that, I succeeded into harder drugs - specifically heroin. At this time, I was scheduled to graduate high school at sixteen and continue to college at New York University to study mathematics with almost a full scholarship. By age fifteen, I was, I think it's safe to say, addicted to said heroin. By sixteen I had progressed beyond smoking and pills to injection. Followed by several years of daily use, leading to me working a series of dead end jobs, which ended up where I am now - a depressed chef that hates my job, hates my life, and often wish I won't wake up when I fall asleep. Suicide is a daily thought, not necessarily an option (I don't think I have the courage to do it), but it is often a serious consideration. I have been 'sober' several times over, but at least once a year since I was 20 I've relapsed at least once, and in between I drowned myself in alcohol or with the use of benzodiazapines. All of these drugs have put in the hospital multiple times due to overdose, I should have died several times because I didn't go to the hospital and somehow still woke up, and once because my alcohol dependence was so high that quitting cold turkey was not an option without potential heart fibrillation. And I have, almost every time, lost everything I had been working towards. Short of family, careers, friends, the only real home I've ever known, and significant amounts of money, I also have lost my fiance, the absolute love of my life, and with her my would be child that I will never get to meet (if he or she was even allowed the chance to live - I don't know if she carried the child to term). I have lied to myself more than I have told the truth over the last twelve years or so, to the extent that I'm no longer confident in my real history. I can truly say that I don't know who I am right now, so I can only imagine how little anyone else could actually know me. In this last year, I have lost most of my close friends, most of which were due to drug and alcohol abuse, all of which would still be alive had any of us sought the appropriate help at any stage of our addictions. Almost all of us had been to rehab at least once (it taught me how to lie very well) - we enjoyed not being sober, we were a sort of happy that we weren't sure could be achieved independently. Of the several of us that had been friends since high school, I am the only one still alive. I remember waking up next to my best friend once a while ago, not sure where I was, to find him drowning in vomit. It was everything I could physically do to roll him to his side, and then I went back to bed - I didn't really care, it was just a thing you do. I wasn't able to think, I wasn't able to process what was happening. My life is gone now. I literally have no one else to turn to - I have known most of the people here longer than almost anyone else in my life. I've been sober for the last month and a half or so from harder drugs, though the needle marks are still there, and my veins are still hard. For the last two weeks I haven't smoked weed (which is the most significant amount of time away from it since I was thirteen), and for the last three weeks I haven't had more than four drinks per night (which is very insignificant for me - I'm one of those people that can drink a handle a night and wake up without a hangover, every night). I reconnected with my family a little over Christmas - which has been awesome, but also very awkward. I don't really know who they are, and I'm not confident they want to know me. I'll be spending a week or so with them later in January, around my birthday, which will be the longest amount of time I've spent with them in like four years. I'm not really sure if anyone here cares - I can't really blame anyone not to. I mean, I really almost don't care. I've been very lucky that I'm still alive, I suppose, but at the same time, I view life as a kind of punishment - we're unlucky enough to have to deal with it. My choice, obviously, was to find ways to ignore it, to lose myself and pretend that I'm someone good. There is a lot of things I don't talk about, especially since I've been, as I'm saying, sober, that I now remember and don't want to. Anyway, the point being, after an entire adult life of abuse and dependence, I no longer want to be an addict.