By: Tim Myers
An Overmedicated Kid to an Addicted Adult
I couldn’t sit still. I daydreamed a lot. I had a hard time focusing in class. I liked to fidget with things, doodle, draw, and talk…a lot. So, my doctor prescribed me drugs. I was twelve years old.
Tell me the name of one twelve year old who doesn’t exhibit those same symptoms. Its called being twelve! It’s not called Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. You drugged a twelve year old, doctor, and you made him a drug addict.
I never had a chance! Back in the 1990’s everyone had a disorder and every drug company was making a dangerous new drug to treat these fake disorders. Mine was ADHD.
Looking for a solution to my “issues,” my parents took me to see a psychologist. He spoke to me for the insurance accepted one-hour period of time. When our session was up, he said, “You have ADHD, you need Ritalin. Go to your doctor and tell him I said that.“
So, I went to my doctor and told him, “That guy said I need Ritalin.” Like a good doctor, he wrote me a prescription.
I had it filled and…boom! I could run faster! I could talk faster! I could draw faster! I could do everything faster! I WAS ON DRUGS.
I felt stronger and had the power to do anything except sit still and concentrate on school. Man, it felt good. I would wake up, take my drugs, skip to school, bounce off the walls all day, grind my teeth, eat absolutely nothing, come home, and crash.
This crash was the only thing that sucked. Every sound and noise bothered me. I snapped and yelled at everything in sight. I would go to bed pissed off at the world, stare at the ceiling ‘til three am, finally pass out, then wake up and start again.
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The Birth of a Drug Addict
Life went on like this for another two years. When my grades didn’t increase, the amount of Ritalin I was prescribed did. Up and up and up the milligrams went. “If the drugs don’t work,” the guy with all those fancy degrees said, “keep taking more drugs.”
Then one night when I was fourteen my life changed forever. I saw an episode of 20/20 that said kids were taking Ritalin and it was being called “kiddie cocaine.”
“Hmm,” I thought to myself, “that sounds cool. Cocaine sounds cool. I’m being prescribed Ritalin, so it won’t be bad if I snort it. It’ll just be cool.”
I snorted Ritalin everyday for the next ten years. I couldn’t get enough. It worked faster and better and I needed more. I was snorting eighty milligrams every morning, pounding a large coffee, and going to school. At lunch, I’d snort another eighty mg, and at dinner another eighty.
I was out of my mind high and could never sleep. I then turned to the alcohol I found in my Dad’s den to get a few hours of shuteye. Take Ritalin, get drunk, wake up, do it again. This pattern repeated itself over and over and before I knew it I was a full-blown drug addict and alcoholic.
A Sober Life
I’m sober four years today.
Over the years, I’ve learned many tricks and tips to stay focused, none of which require medication. While alcoholism and drug abuse do run in my family, I don’t think I’d have gone through fifteen years of hell, nine rehabs, and a near fatal car accident if some doctor hadn’t prescribed me Ritalin when I was twelve.
A doctor made me a drug addict. Period.