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  #1  
Old 27-04-2013, 03:53
clouds24 clouds24 is offline
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Personality of a drug user

What personality traits do you think are common to drug users, and why? (Not addicts, there are already masses of resources on the addictive personality. I'll start:
  • Logical and unsentimental -you have to be, if you're not frightened off by stereotypes or emotional blackmail. It seems that a lot of people on this forum will make the harsh, but pragmatic choice, even in situations that have nothing to do with drugs.
    Independent thinkers - as above, you have to be willing to go against the grain. In addition, people who enjoy thinking in general are probably more likely to to be curious about altered states of consciousness.
    Hedonistic. I think this one is self-explanatory - drugs are God's gift to the pleasure-seeker.
    Determined. When you consider the trouble of tracking down your DOC, the ever-present threat of legal trouble, not to mention the come-downs, you have to be one strong-willed bastard to keep it up.

For my fellow psychology geeks, I'd say the archetypal drug user has low conscientiousness and agreeableness and high openness.

What do you guys think?

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Fantastic thread starter; I think this will generate some interesting views from other members
  #2  
Old 27-04-2013, 05:38
Vivix Vivix is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

This may be an offshoot or sister trait of hedonistic but knowing my own personality and the personalities of other drug users I know, I'd say we have difficulty tolerating boredom, and we may feel trapped by boredom often.

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Good two-cents
  #3  
Old 01-05-2013, 19:23
xyz789 xyz789 is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

I think it depends on what substances an individual uses/is interested in. Some substances are more hedonistic and pleasurable whereas others are more thoughtful and pensive. And some are a mix of both. But on the whole I think most drug users have a degree of the following traits:

-Openness: willingness to engage in new experiences with an open mind, the ability to abandon any preconceptions and just go with the flow.

-Curiosity: the desire to seek out novel things, to constantly inquire about everything, to be interested and intrigued by.

-Critical Thinking and Skepticism: the ability to think for yourself; to see through propaganda and lies, to do your own research on things and not just believe what you hear off other people.
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Old 01-05-2013, 20:17
soso soso is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Clouds24

"Not addicts, there are already masses of resources on the addictive personality"

Surely the same aplies to drug addicts as drug users, the personality traits of a drug user are the same as a drug addict. All addicts started off as users so i dont see the diference.
For me the main thing was a FUCK IT attitude, "Heroin? fuck it, why not..Crack ahh go on then fuck it"
Soso

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Its like a square is a rectangle but a rectangle isn't a square, a drug addict is a drug user but not all drug users are addicts.
  #5  
Old 01-05-2013, 23:29
mer kaba mer kaba is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

id say at the core we all share the fear of managing affect. We use, run, to a substance to balance out the ups and more commonly the downs we have to face with life.
  #6  
Old 03-05-2013, 21:44
Nosferatus Nosferatus is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Obviously it would depend on a lot of things, including individual temperament, what drugs they use and whether they're an addicted or recreational user. But I would say that identifying strongly with a certain subculture and a tendency to value first hand experience are common traits in users of certain drugs.
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Old 03-05-2013, 22:14
clouds24 clouds24 is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Great suggestions, all.

I just thought of another one. I'm a huge bookworm, so I've read at least six hundred variants of this quote: "I don't like to drink/take drugs. I don't like feeling out of control." I think that's one of the fundamental human differences: you either enjoy feeling out of control, or you don't.

Being a practical sort, I don't always like the consequences of being out of control, but the feeling itself is ecstatic. That's one of several commonalities I've seen with other people here: we're fascinated with breaking taboos and going to extremes.
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Old 17-05-2013, 20:35
triplexm triplexm is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

I would also add that we have difficulty dealing with uncomfortable emotions and situations - being in emotional pain is almost intolerable. Hence the desire to 'numb out' using a substance. Completely agree with the poster who mentioned we have a low tolerance for boredom and the mundanity of everyday life. Risk taking and impulsivity are also key traits.
  #9  
Old 17-05-2013, 23:20
longwalk longwalk is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosferatus View Post
. . . it would depend on a lot of things, including individual temperament . . .
Fascinating question, and I think your introductory comment nailed it: it depends. Social circles do make a difference foe some, and perhaps we would find commonalities based on the types of drug used, but even then I do not know if we could generalize.

Aspects of my own temperament, family background, and experiences would seem to make me a good candidate for the "Least Likely to Approve of Drugs" award...at least if you believe in the stereotypes. I hate feeling mentally/intellectually out control, and would probably not comply with taking any medication that significantly altered my mental state, unless it was critically important for my physical health.

Yet here I am! I take medications that enhance my life, and enjoy modest recreational effects as well. I am not sure there is any general personality "type."
  #10  
Old 18-05-2013, 00:25
Akanaro Akanaro is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Meh, y'all forget that addicts were users first before they became addicts. Pfff...

Anyway, I can think of a few traits that would influence people to experiment.

Curious explorers - You'd have to be a curious character to want to try (explore) something unknown and potentially harmful. Our forefathers had uncharted lands. We have drugs.

Risk takers - Let's face it, drugs are not for sissies. The average drug user hardly stops to think about such trivial things as death. If you're not living on the edge you're taking up too much space, you know?

Non-conformers or Rebels - Well most of us anyway. Let's face it, drugs have a stigma. Friends and family members would cry out in horror and run for the hills at the word 'drugs'. For those who tread this path its of little consequence though. We laugh at society. We're already misunderstood and disapproved of. Who cares?

Unhappy or Depressed to some degree - Well it's only a logical conclusion that a happy person won't seek out a chemical solution to make him happy. We however are not all that happy for various reasons. So we look for happiness in a fog of chemical intoxications.

Open minded sexopaths- To various degrees. We won't shy away at unusual or unheard of practises and events but to what degree we will partake varies. A large percentage get into drugs as a means of sexual exploration or simply because someone told them its awesome to do it on this or that drug. Many end up doing all sorts of unconventional things in the name of experience once the barriers go down.

Criminal masterminds - No we're not thieves or common thugs. But lets be honest, how often do we not carefully plan the deal to get our poison, how we're going to sneak it past the bouncers or squares, how we're going to hide it from unwelcome eyes and how we're going to prevent parents, spouses, bosses or friends from realising that we're on something. It's a life of plotting and schemeing as we go from one party to the next.

Well that's it from me. Happy trails.
  #11  
Old 18-05-2013, 00:30
longwalk longwalk is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Quote:
Originally Posted by Akanaro View Post
Meh, y'all forget that addicts were users first before they became addicts. Pfff...

Anyway, I can think of a few traits that would influence people to experiment.

Curious explorers -
Risk takers -
Non-conformers or Rebels -
Unhappy or Depressed to some degree -
Open minded sexopaths-
Criminal masterminds -
Well that's it from me. Happy trails.
Great post! Yet methinks you just described practically everyone in the human race. Recreational user personalities come in all shapes and sizes.
  #12  
Old 18-05-2013, 01:15
MikePatton MikePatton is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

It depends on the drug really, for example while pot smokers were characterized as anti-war hippies in the 60s, nowdays practically everyone does it, so seeking a personality trait they all share is no more than stereotyping. That said, the willingness or even the need to explore is present in many drug users, as well as the dissatisfaction with their lives in some way which lead them to this exploration. Not conforming with the society that sees them as criminals is only reasonable, why would you embrace those who think you belong in a cell?

It's like the chicken and the egg, what came first - the alienation from society or the drug use? Do I reject society because they rejected me first due to my drug use or was it always in me? Also you have to be open minded and take everything with a grain of salt in order to ignore the massive volume of propoganda and dive head first into the world of drugs, so it appears the majority of us aren't sheeps that blindly follow instructions, we ask questions and we doubt statements that aren't backed by solid evidence.

Last edited by MikePatton; 18-05-2013 at 01:21.
  #13  
Old 19-05-2013, 06:08
Sweet Jones Sweet Jones is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Good thread, a lot of what's said applies to me

Quote:
Originally Posted by Akanaro View Post
Non-conformers or Rebels - Well most of us anyway. Let's face it, drugs have a stigma. Friends and family members would cry out in horror and run for the hills at the word 'drugs'. For those who tread this path its of little consequence though. We laugh at society. We're already misunderstood and disapproved of. Who cares?
I get off a little on having this part of my life that is completely misunderstood and disapproved of by most people in my family, at work, etc, yet they are also completely unaware of what I do in my spare time
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Old 19-05-2013, 07:15
5-HT2A 5-HT2A is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

My guesses?

- Openness

- Curiousity

- Higher than average IQ

- Need to find meaning

- Skeptical

- Cynical

- Alienated

Those are for drugs which produce real meaning and aren't for numbing.

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Sounds about right for the hallucinogenically inclined
  #15  
Old 19-05-2013, 07:49
blessedmommy blessedmommy is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

I think diff ppl use for diff reasons. some i think start off using for legit reasons and end up just really enjoying the feeling they get. some use it for recreation and fun. some, like myself, use it to numb the pain inside my heart. I have physical pain but deep inside i have been through so much. My biological father molested me for years, my ex husband beat me and cheated on me daily, and i was raped until he got me preggers (never in my life plan to have kids but now i couldnt imagine life without my precious son!) I have an eating disorder, severe depression i can never seem to kick, and anxiety through the roof. I also have ADHD which causes my brain to feel overwhelmed. I have been medicated on numerous meds since i was 13. The lortabs have been the only thing to make me feel some what normal in life and not give a damn about my past. That's my reasons. They sound dramatic and they sound like im a basket case but that's been my life. I'm not proud that im an addict and the last 4 days of my WD ive had to live in my very painful reality. I wish i used for fun. But instead i use to cope.
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Old 19-05-2013, 08:28
Paroxeking Paroxeking is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Evolved Pioneer in a covered wagon.

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Please elaborate, as this hardly makes any sense
  #17  
Old 08-09-2013, 16:44
pink_reaper pink_reaper is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

In my personal experience and experience with other junkies I hang with I'd say....

1. PAIN. Almost every single junky I know is suffering from some deep underlying emotional pain, especially opiate addicts. Like Manson says..."There's a hole in my soul, that I fill with dope"

2. We crave chaos. Most of us would rather have to pick up change our the couch to buy our next meal and/or sit in the dark because we spent the bill money on our habit than ever dream of being the boring soccer mom who works a 9-5 office job. I know this is definitely the case with me, I want to get my shit together but I NEVER wanna lose my wild streak!

3. Free spirit. We are who we are, take it or leave it.

4. Another interesting one I've come across is what I've heard labeled "Chronic Uniqueness" basically everyone thinks that they are so unique that no one else is like them. Which is kind of ridiculous because all of us junkies are more or less the same overall.

5. Non Judgemental/accepting: I guess with everyone I know and myself considered I'd really split this 50/50 but this is what I consider one of the perks of being a junky. When I first started using I was on my high horse, snobby, looked down on junkies and swore I'd never do what they do. Well...this life knocked me down a peg and I'll forever be grateful for that. It is very humbling to call someone scum and saying you'll never stoop that low only to find yourself in their shoes time and time again. I wish more junkies were like me honestly, I will help anyone out once and if they prove to help me in my time of need, we will forever be tight. Otherwise, fuck them they can die of dopesickness next time! So on the opposite side of the same token....

6. Selfish/I'm better than you...BECAUSE! I know a lot of junkies with this outlook. People who are just downright stingy! People who expect you to help them but are never there to help others. People who call other junkies scum when they are junkies themselves! What the hell happened to taking care of our own???? The type that a favor never is given without strings attached. Fuck that! Very common though I believe. Junkies are usually one extreme or the other "Everyone Welcome/I'm not as bad as YOU" I know heaps of junkies who think they are better because they haven't done xyz yet when really it's only a matter of time. OR junkies who look down of tweakers...people who snort their dope look down on IV users. WE ARE ALL JUNKIES!!!

7. Loving: I know this especially to be true with opiate addicts almost everyone I know has a big heart for those they care about. Even people who never share their goods are usually fiercly loyal to their SO. The love of my life is an addict and I've never been happier. They can roll with you through the hard times, and make the good times a million times more enjoyable! A junky relationship is a very, very special thing imo but it comes down to this. You can help each other up, or you can tear each other down.
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Old 12-10-2013, 16:50
AmbitiousStoner AmbitiousStoner is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Personality Types Attract Different Drugs

We tend to associate certain personality types with specific addictions, but the truth is more complicated than you might think. Let's start with the myth of a certain rum-soaked literary giant in Cuba...

Here’s Ernest Hemingway, dead drunk on a stool in Cuba with his face on his hand and his hand on an ever-present mojito. He's the tormented writer, hard at work at the daily scrubbing of his sins. Like the Hard-Drinking Writer, we've come to expect certain personality types to have certain habits: The Morose Musician with Keith Richards' appetite for heroin; the Insecure Starlet with Marilyn's taste for pills; the Monomaniacal Money Manager with a nose for cocaine. They are generalizations that have been imprinted by generations of popular culture. But the types don't necessarily line up.

The logic of associating personalities with specific drugs seems natural. A German-British psychologist named Hans Eysenck spent the mid-20th century turning the eye of the scientific community from Freud’s behavior-based theories to individualized psychology—pioneering the science of personality. He considered this pursuit of matching personalities with drugs a pet project.

Eynsenck believed the ways people are inclined to think aren’t always the ways that make us feel best. And because drugs are the easiest way to modify temperament, it’s only natural for us to seek out those substances that keep us on an even keel. For instance, he thought that introverts, whose brains are always chewing at problems, should crave depressants to quiet the incessant mental chatter. Extroverts, easily bored, should chase the rush of stimulants.

His theory condensed individualized drug cravings into an easy, logical framework—but he was wrong. Or at least, he vastly oversimplified the concepts of both “personality” and “drugs.” Worse, his theory wasn’t borne out by research. Study after study showed both introverts and extroverts drinking alcohol (a depressant) to excess. And extroverts didn’t limit themselves to uppers; it seemed they would reach for all kinds of substances.

So where does that leave us? Well, scientists kept trying to tie the two nebulous concepts together. Over the years, as new methods of personality screening emerged, researchers continued to distribute questionnaires to groups of drug addicts. One major breakthrough came when four sets of psychologists independently realized in the 1980s and 1990s that a person’s personality traits—tendencies that are partially genetic and tend to last throughout life—can be pretty reliably described using five factors.
Introversion and extroversion weren’t enough, they thought. We should also consider openness to new experiences (think Bear Grylls), conscientiousness (Haruki Marukami), agreeableness (Mother Theresa) and neuroticism (Woody Allen) when trying to understand why people act the way they do. Thus armed, personality psychologists began fitting the various personality traits they had come up with over the years into what came to be called the “Big Five.” And lo, with a more accurate representation of traits, a connection between personality and drug use began to emerge.

People who tested high on neuroticism (indicating that they tend to be impulsive, emotionally unstable and anxious), low on conscientiousness (tending to be disorganized, unambitious and lazy), and low on agreeableness (tending to be uncooperative, unhelpful or misanthropic), were more likely to have problems with alcohol or drugs than people whose scores were closer to the middle, or reversed. Perhaps more interestingly to the question of whether personality traits led their owners to cocaine over alcohol, or marijuana over mushrooms, higher scores for each risky trait were linked to higher likelihood of using "hard" drugs like heroin, amphetamines or crack.

“There is some evidence that the more ‘bad’ traits you have, the harder the drugs you’re going to use,” says Michigan State Department of Psychology professor Chris Hopwood. “So super, super-impulsive, sensation-seeking, neurotic people might be inclined to use something like heroin, for example, whereas if you’re a little bit less impulsive or have more anxiety about things maybe you wouldn’t. Maybe you would use other drugs but you would be too afraid to use heroin.”

Not all the personality factors that appear in people with drug problems are negative, however:
sensation-seeking—a facet of openness to experience that’s common among extreme sports athletes, explorers, philanderers and roller coaster-enthusiasts—is almost always associated with drug abuse, but doesn’t necessarily scale with using harder drugs. Marijuana users, for instance, have been shown to be high in sensation-seeking, with closer-to-average levels of neuroticism.

Sensation-seeking seems to be about 60% heritable—meaning about 60% of the trait comes from your genes—and appears to be related to the brain’s dopamine reward system, the same system that makes most drugs of abuse pleasurable. Sensation-seeking may even be related to where you live, through interactions with neighbors—or, in the case of, say, New York City, through self-selection. A study by Jason Rentfrow, Sam Gosling, and Jeff Potter that was analyzed by Richard Florida on The Atlantic’s Atlantic Cities blog showed that Openness to Experience scaled with drug use when compared within states. And which states had the highest levels of both illicit drug use and openness? Colorado, Vermont, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Massachusetts, New York and California.

Given the personality characteristics that seemed to split “hard” versus “soft” drugs, scientists began to wonder if—even if they couldn’t predict who would take uppers over downers—there was a way to predict who would become an alcoholic and who would abuse illegal drugs. The studies showed some remarkable similarities (One study conducted among veterans suggested that all addicts share interpersonal styles that tend toward loner, rebel and pessimist stereotypes, for example, which surprised no one who has ever seen Leaving Las Vegas). But there did appear to be a little something extra that could push a person into hard drug addiction.

People who use illicit drugs often have been shown to have higher rates of both extroversion and susceptibility to boredom, which may drive them into more situations where drugs appear, or simply make them more likely to crave new subjective experiences. And those who are particularly susceptible to boredom have been shown to use opiates more often.

But this is where the studies break down. Most research on the topic of how personality relates to drugs of choice is conducted among people who already have drugs of choice—addicts. And as any addict knows, once you’ve taken a shine to a drug, it can be exceedingly difficult to disentangle the personality factors that came before from the ones that came after. By the time the personality questionnaires are administered, who’s to say what caused the drug use and what the drug use caused?

“It could go either way,” says Hopson. “A person who uses heroin might end up having problems in their life. Perhaps he loses his job, perhaps then he starts stealing things. You could easily tell a story that goes, the heroin started first and then the person started doing all kinds of mean antisocial things. Or you could tell a story that says that the person was sort of a ‘bad’ person, if you’ll forgive the language, and one of the bad things they did was use heroin.”

There are also direct effects of drugs that scientists have to consider. Crack and cocaine abusers, for example, have shown personality traits related to the symptom of paranoia in certain studies, as well as depression and impulsivity and a trait terrifyingly called “psychoticism.” Because long-term crack or cocaine use can cause many of these effects, however, it’s unlikely that those traits cause people to take up stimulants. Rather, it appears that long-term crack or cocaine use might be able to alter the expression of certain traits to create a “stimulant user profile.”

Regardless of the qualms of scientists, however, quiz websites and message boards hoping to connect personality to a particular drug have popped up all over the internet. Many focus on Myers-Briggs personality types (ENFP, ISTJ, etc), which are commonly used by career counselors to assess how people prefer to perceive and organize information. Others skip the science altogether, selecting a drug you’re likely to use based on the clothes you wear, the events you attend, where you live, and your perceived flaws.

Will science ever reach that degree of accuracy—explaining just what it is that seems to make neurotic writers more likely to drink than use heroin? It’s certainly possible, says Hopson. “One way to think about personality is in terms of traits, which are stable and heritable. But you can also think about personality dynamics, like how do I react if you insult me, for example. That’s sort of my guess is that which drugs you use depend on the more complicated personality dynamics.”

Assuming you’ve got the traits that push you toward drug use in the first place, what else might lead you to one substance over another? Hopson says factors that play a role include what your parents use, what your friends use, and even simply what’s available where you live. Which perhaps explains Hemingway’s situation better than we could have expected: there sure was a lot of rum in Cuba.


(Source: The Fix website. Article written by Jacqueline Detwiller, April 12, 2012)
  #19  
Old 27-01-2014, 11:32
Aussie_23 Aussie_23 is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Curiosity: This is the biggest one for me personally. The first times I tried Weed and Ecstasy was out of curiosity, and i'm also curious to try others aswell.

Fun Loving: This would surely be a big one for most, the 3 best nights i've ever had out are the 3 times i've done Ecstasy, way better than any drunken nights out.
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Old 27-01-2014, 13:50
Cid Lysergic Cid Lysergic is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

I think it really depends. Are you doing drugs for exploratory purposes (polysubstance/trying newer, lesser known, ones like JWH, Methoxetamine, DMT, etc.) or are you sticking to a drug of choice as in one who is addicted or repeats that drug regularly? I think that those who are into all drugs, Psychedelics, Dissociatives, Deleriants, Opioids, Stimulants, Depressants or Cannabinoids. They all have a different mind set. I believe that all drug users' minds have been "opened" per say to see the world in a wider perspective I guess. If any of that made sense, lol.
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Old 01-06-2014, 08:12
meme0101 meme0101 is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Quote:
Originally Posted by clouds24 View Post

"You either enjoy feeling out of control, or you don't.
Being a practical sort, I don't always like the consequences of being out of control, but the feeling itself is ecstatic. That's one of several commonalities I've seen with other people here: we're fascinated with breaking taboos and going to extremes".
And while that's true of all of us more or less, that REALLY fits those rare individuals who actively seek out,enjoy, (and can even get addicted to) deliriant induced trips. (or self-poisonings as some would call it)
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Old 01-06-2014, 08:23
mememememe mememememe is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

I first started with weed at high-school ,why? because it was the in thing to be cool to be liked .

Then later on i tried some Ecstasy and thought wow drugs are great .

I was always one to try new highs anything that would get me high.id say to friends if shit was giving people a high at be eating it.

Then when i hit a bad patch i started taking things i was against IE valium ,again why? because i had got some of a friend and wanted to no what the big deal was ,it was good for about a month then i built a mass tolerance and then moved on to Dhc.

That brought back the high speedy rush so while it blocked out all bad feelings it made me feel like a teen on Ecstasy again up all night high..I went threw a stage where i tried other things threw curiosity.And i think thats why most of us end up addicts "wanting to see what the big deal is all about"
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Old 01-06-2014, 09:14
meme0101 meme0101 is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Don't forget the spiritual explorers. The metaphysicians, Mystics, modern day shamans, the Native American Church members and sometimes just the plain old occultists who view their drug(s) as a Holy Sacrament, or sometimes just as a (very potent) ritual tool.

There's always a few hell, maybe many, that break and take it totally overboard. But for every one that does, there's probably another who does not.
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Old 04-06-2014, 18:35
johndoegay johndoegay is offline
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Re: Personality of a drug user

Drug users are the best kind of people. They are nice. Except the mean ones who I don't feel safe around. You take a good friend and snort like 10 lines of coke with him and you guys will be walking around the room having awesome conversation at lightning speed. AWWWW I miss it. I can't get it. I live in Tiverton, RI. I don't have any friends. I only know one heroin dealer and he's always in jail or broke.

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