Cocaine Addiction Treatment Centers Middleboro MA
Psychiatry, Addiction Medicine
The Difference Is We Knew Better: Interview With a Cocaine Addict - Addicted
The Difference Is We Knew Better: Interview With a Cocaine Addict
Jeanne Sparks-CarrekerFriday, September 14, 2007 Ever wonder what it is like to live every second of every day with a craving for a substance which has not only destroyed your life, but which has destroyed the lives of those around you, taken away everyone's trust in you, and labeled you with a title that includes you in the same categories as the lowest members of society?
Brenda Manning of Birmingham, Alabama can relate. Her family has disowned her, the business which once held her as a top, valued employee, and which gave her employee of the month plaques three times in two years finally dismissed her. She has been evicted from the apartment she lived in with her children, and just this past November, she lost custody of her twelve year old daughter by a decision within the Family Court System of Jefferson County.
She now lives in a friend's home which has no power or water service because the bills have not been paid by the eight adult residents. Rather, any money accumulated has been used to purchase cocaine. Brenda is a 42 year old Caucasian female, and is noticeably restless as she sits down on the couch in the small, dirty livingroom. Our surroundings seem to lack everything, as if all the valuables and appliances that once sat in this small, old house has been used to barter another hit of cocaine.
JSC: When did you first start using drugs?
BRENDA: I started smoking pot when I was in junior high. I guess I was about twelve or thirteen. I got in with the wrong crowd, you know what I mean.
JSC: Did you finish school?
BRENDA: No, I dropped out when I was sixteen. I really stopped going when I was about fourteen. I just dodged the truancy people. They gave up after a while. Well, when we were kids, anyways.
JSC: What was your home life like back then, Brenda?
BRENDA: My mama worked a lot, I guess. I didn't know my father too good. She had too much to do and couldn't keep up with me, really. It was alright, but I didn't have anyone telling me what to do too much, so I got to do what I wanted.
JSC: When did you decide to try harder drugs?
BRENDA: I guess I was around eighteen, at a party, you know, the whole peer-pressure thing happening. I had been scared of the harder stuff, but then when I tried it, it didn't kill me. I liked it too much, too.
JSC: What drug was it that you tried at the party?
BRENDA: There were people free-basing cocaine. I knew I was hooked the first few seconds after I took a hit. It's owned me every since.
Two males had entered the livingroom from a far bedroom, and as Brenda commented on the cocaine "owning" her, they nodded in understanding, then made their way to another room to my left.
JSC: When did you have children?
BRENDA: I got pregnant with my first kid when I was twenty-two. I was workin' the streets to make money, truck stops and all. She went to live with my mother when I had her cause I didn't think I ...