- free; so it kept me away from the constant need to find money any way and any how and
- needed to be taken just once orally; no injecting needed
- safe; no worries about purity, that it might be poison, etc. etc. 100% clean from a reliable source.
Though, obviously, as most of you will know, methadone has its downsides. People are heavily divided about it- both opiate addicts and their families, health professionals etc. When I was on my methadone maintanence programmes I discovered a lot of negative points and I really did not see myself progress in any which way or form. Like many others, I continued to use heroin and just used methadone as a safety net- it was there for when I couldn't get any heroin, so I didn't have to endure the dreadful ordeal that is cold turkey. These downsides consisted of
- Drowsiness; I still carried on dozing off. Even when I lowered my dose from 60ml to 50ml.
- Collecting; I had to pick up my methadone 7 days a week from Boots at the Grafton Center, along with god knows how many other junkies which meant we were all passing each other, just like we used to, but instead of going to our illegal dealer, we were going to the state supported one. We just tempted one another, and it was all to easy to approach somebody else picking up their script and ask if they wanted to go halfs on a bag. We couldn't leave the 'scene' behind.
- Isolation; Once I no longer had to score heroin (which is, as we know, a full-time business) I got in with old friends and began to spend less and less time in the scene. But you had to go everyday to pick up your script, and drink it infront of the pharmacist, and your friends if you hadn't given them a good enough excuse for why they should wait outside. You couldn't with the money you saved from not having to buy heroin, go away for a weekend to say, Brighton. You needed to be in Cambridge to pick up your script.
- Addictiveness; Methadone is a lot stronger than heroin and takes, obviously, a lot longer to come off.
- Sugar; It took me ages to get sugar-free methadone, and this was only after complaining and comparing my teeth to everyone elses, or rather, the gaps where everyone elses used to be. My friend Becky is 32, her top teeth are rotted beyond repair.
I will have to go to the pharmacy everyday for my Subutex but the difference is, Subutex blocks the effects of heroin. There isn't much of a point in me taking it, not like with methadone. My sleeping patterns have dramatically changed; I get up at about 6am every morning now so my plan is to go to the chemist as early as possible to avoid everyone else (lets face it- if I'm not sleeping now I'm on heroin, what chance do I have when I stop it!?!). I will have to rattle for over 24 hours before I go to my appointment and collect my prescription for one Subutex. This is because, the first time you take it, if you have heroin or methadone in your system you go into an instant, violent withdrawal. No thank you. I can't cope with a normal withdrawal, so I'd had to experience that. Urgh.
I am really looking forward to this. May seem strange to say that, looking forward to feeling so damn ill when you know you could just spend £10 and rid yourself of that unbearable pain. But thats just it... you rid yourself of the physical pain for a couple of hours then you need to go and get more money to stop it starting again. And you do so much bad shit, you degrade yourself, abuse yourself, sell your dignity... all for something that doesn't even last longer than a few hours. Something that has helped destroy your life beyond repair. See what I mean about the make or break.... either I do it this time, or I just resign myself to the fact I don't want to change, and I will carry on my life of utter misery, disgusting behaviour and lawlessness. I just hope and pray I do it this time. This time... everything is resting on it.