True Life: I’m Addicted to Heroin

In this episode of True Life they focused on three people who face addicted to heroin. This kind of narrative could be classified as both a Chaos and Quest narrative. Not only is there is no real solution, but these addicts are attempting to find themselves and the best way to cope with their illness. These narratives are used to explain not only how they got to the point they’re currently at, but why. Each one has had a traumatic experience or history in their life which has led them to make the decisions they have in the past. For instance, one of the girls had a family history of drug use. Her father died of a cocaine overdose and she almost immediately started using drugs to cope. This may be because this is how her father dealt with his feelings. Perhaps she saw that and thought that is how adults should deal with things and therefore, when it came time for her to accept a large loss she did so by using. Another girl started using drugs as a way to socially interact with other people. She said her boyfriend introduced her to heroin and she instantly loved it so much that it became the most important thing in her life. Her need to fit in a social construct in which harmful drugs were involved led her to drug use. This girl became so sick from her addiction she had to have open heart surgery as well as lung surgery. Another women featured in this story had overdosed nine times. These experiences may have scared them, however, not even medical professionals explaining the severity of their addiction was able to help. Each person in this episode realized they needed help, but they hadn’t hit rock bottom yet. They wanted a change but weren’t wiling to make the sacrifices necessary to do so.

I think this episode was a great way to show the public the behavior and thought process of someone who is an heroin addict. They didn’t merely become one randomly one day. It took a significant life change to push them towards this kind of escape. It’s important to see the family relationships and how they’re altered and in what way by this drug. It’s clear that the users become secretive because our culture has a stigma around drug addiction. Because of this these addicts don’t tell people the situation or hide it altogether which only furthers their usage. As mentioned in the first lecture of this week, some illnesses are hard to identify without physical symptoms. Since many are able to hide their addiction for some time, it’s important to realize that they still have a serious problem Although it is hard to identify how addicted one is, since it seems like a sliding scale, one must remember that someone being able to express their feelings towards they’re illness may change their treatment.

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  1. Jacqueline Godin says:

    I am completely fascinated by addictions and one day hope to become a psychiatrist specializing in substance abuse. I read an article that was a narrative of a person that used to be a heroin addict and the link for it is here: The Daily Life of a Heroin Addict. In the article I read, it did not share the back story of the addict, nor the result of how he got help, but more just a recollection of what his daily life was like as a heroin addict. It talks about how he would wake up and all he would think about is how to get his first fix. After stealing a car and selling the radio for drug money, he would go home, use, and then proceed to figure out a way for his next fix. He would steal from his family and even his church for heroin money and not even think about the consequences.

    The article I read seemed to be more of a chaos narrative than anything else, just like the true life episode you watched. As you mentioned in your post, i think drug abuse within their families in the past and their culture influenced their addictions. In the article I read, however, it does not share why or how this person became an addict. I chose to read this article, though, because it told of one person’s daily life step-by-step rather than focus on the before and after, unlike the true life episodes. It gave me a different perspective on heroin addiction than a normal TV show would.

    AllTreatment. “The Daily Life of a Heroin Addict – Part 1.” Accessed July 27, 2013. http://www.alltreatment.com/the-daily-life-of-a-heroin-addict-part-1.

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