ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Crossing the Tracks: One Drug Addict's Dark Journey in to Hell

Updated on April 6, 2012
Take your pick.
Take your pick. | Source


How some of us survive our choices in life has always baffled me. As a child of the 70's, I have always been somewhat of a rebel, and by the time I was grown, many of the causes that inspired passion in me had begun to dwindle. At the time, using drugs was a generational statement. I showed little resistance when I decided to give them a try, fitting in with people around me-not my forte even now-became a personal cause. And so years ago, after happily dabbling in virtually every substance known to man, I ended up a self-destructive, self-loathing drunk and drug addict often close to death. Against all odds, I survived. My experiences with addiction actually shock me today, my personality and behavior were transformed by multiple chemicals-as you can imagine, I was terribly lost.

If anyone told me I would actually turn 55, I would never have believed it; I can hear my cynical laugh even now. Living beyond the age of 25 was a stretch. And although there is no way to accurately describe my personal journey, I will try to take you, descriptively, into the darkness.

Shall we?

South Central Los Angeles

Scoring crack cocaine on the streets of Los Angeles can be problematic if you look like me. A middle-class white woman around 30 years old with good teeth and dressed well doesn't have much of a chance at getting drugs from street dealers. So an acquaintance of mine, a homeless con-artist familiar with this underworld, escorted me on the hunt. How did a nice girl like me meet such a low-life? He is my brother-in-law.

How John got to this point in his life was typical of an addict; he had discovered cocaine while gainfully employed, and as a result, lost everything. He had been a successful, good-looking man who owned a slew of motorcycles, a boat, his own home, and had a great job.

My excuse? Aside from my rebellious nature, I've always been attracted to the shadowy side of life. Abnormal psychology was one of my favorite courses in college. Reading 'true crime' stories is one of my guilty reading pleasures. Rather than wearing black mascara, I chose purple. Yep, that would be me. While these may be charming attributes, they can also be devastatingly dangerous.

An Anonymous Poll

Have you ever tried illegal drugs?

See results

Crossing the Tracks

Since I was the one financing this venture, John was unable to convince me to stay home one particular night. I was extremely curious about the 'other side of the tracks' and full of bravado. As an educated sociologist, I had been trained to insert myself flawlessly into strange new worlds. This chameleon-like persona had become an almost palpable part of my existence. Yet this hunt did give me pause, given the track record of guns, gangs and murder in the area, not to mention the cops; How was I to blend in successfully without losing my life or going to jail?

In my essentially twisted perception-addicted at the time to crack and later methamphetamine-I felt little fear. I imagined John could and would protect me. My husband, his brother, had insisted I be taken care of. John was part of their world, after all, no longer a reputable member of the society I still knew. And of course, I was already in the grips of cocaine addiction and my need for it had to be satisfied.

We walked purposefully from my rented house toward the South Central area-not known for its affluence. If there had been any police around, I am certain they would have considered us suspicious characters. As a duo, we bordered on the ridiculous; I was wearing sensible shoes and John looked like the homeless man he was.

The Long and Winding Road

We headed for places and people John was familiar with, but were met with rejection time after time. It seemed that my presence virtually guaranteed failure. Though many people knew John, I was a liability.

Frustrated and growing exhausted, we decided to head home-with nothing to show for our efforts. But rather than walk back home completely empty-handed, we stopped by a local liquor store and bought 3 bottles of Cisco, a sickly sweet but cheap wine. After this purchase, we began the last leg of our journey only to spot a dealer on the block corner. John was familiar with this man and we followed him to an alley nearby. Cash exchanged hands and we were in business.  Street etiquette demanded we share a pipeful with the dealer, and as the crack pipe was passed around, I eagerly took my first hit, burning my lips-a tell-tale sign of crack smokers.

As I recall this episode, I'm horrified to realize that I shared this pipe with total strangers, with questionable hygienic habits and a myriad of possible illnesses. I simply did not care.

And in the End

We arrived home after 3 hours and shared the booty with my hubby.  We enjoyed around 4 passes of the pipe, then started the whole process again.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      6 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Thank you, Mary and RunAbstract, for commenting on this article. I do not normally consider myself 'brave', yet I suppose this is the case since most people are not willing to share such personal information on the Internet. I imagine I am somewhat of an open book when it comes to my life, and that's fine with me. I wish more people would be forthcoming about their faults and experience; I think the world would benefit greatly!

      Thanks again,


    • RunAbstract profile image


      6 years ago from USA

      What an experience! Isn't it remarkable how we can neglect our safety and our normally valid thought processes to reach goals we are compelled to reach?

      This was a well written Hub. Very honest. It is also an important article, in that it can educate others.

      Very brave.

    • profile image

      Mary Strain 

      6 years ago

      Laurel, what a vivid memoir, and so well written. So many of our generation have had this experience. I'm glad you survived it, and that you told the tale. It will help many people. Up and awesome!

    • Lisbeth Salander profile image

      Lisbeth Salander 

      8 years ago from Stockholm, Sweden

      Hello... Thank you for what you write. Recognizing that you support drug legalization, or so I surmise, I would recommend "Within The Realm of the Hungry Ghost" by Gabor Mate. His experience as a Doctor working in a drug addicted population is revealing and compassion provoking. I related well to the experience of hunting and seeking abuzz in an ally. I too was never the one that could score... unwillingness on my part, but my partner had no restraint... he could, did and would approach anyone and get anything... and I would acquiesce. Silly and petty, and now historical. Thank you again... I will keep reading, but now back to "research work" Lis

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      8 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Hollie-you have encapsulated the essence of sociology perfectly here in this comment! Addiction (or the study thereof) is indeed classless, and has no regard for the variables that we students of society are bound to tend to. I absolutely adore the sociologist's quotation you wrote, and have heard it sometime in the past, yet I can't recall, either, who said it.

      What a lovely comment this is, Hollie, and I do believe you've a new follower in your future! ;)


    • Hollie Thomas profile image

      Hollie Thomas 

      8 years ago from United Kingdom

      Hi lorlie,

      We only met a few minutes ago in a forum, however, after reading this hub, I feel like we have a few things in common. I'm not in recovery, I haven't had major alcohol or addiction problems in my life, but I have also studied the social sciences, and just like you, have been drawn to the dark side. So much so, that after graduating I took a job with substance misusers, sex workers, dealers and Pimps. I have also worked with child sex offenders and rapists. However, I would NEVER compare substance misusers to the latter group, just to clarify. I didn't go off in search of a particular discipline to experience a particular lifestyle, but to better understand the environment I'd grown up in. I forget which sociologist had said this, but it springs to mind. I'm paraphrasing here but " The study of society is comparable to standing in an unlit room, then someone suddenly turns the lights on." I think that summarizes sociology quite well.

      All in all, one thing this beautiful hub encapsulates, is that addiction knows no boundaries, it doesn't matter where you come from, or who you are, addiction is classless. Well done. :)

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      8 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      My amazed thanks to you Marsei for words I shall NEVER forget! I've never heard of the T.W. Festival writing contest, but if you really think I've a chance, I'd be honored to try! Meeting you would be the most amazing part of it all!

      New Orleans is my 2nd favorite city in this land of ours, San Francisco holds 1st place, probably since I went to high school in nearby Palo Alto, CA.

      Oh Marsei, you've a new follower!

      Now I'm off to do the deed-following you, I mean. ;)


    • Marsei profile image

      Sue Pratt 

      8 years ago from New Orleans

      Since we've been talking about the "divine" project, I decided to read your work. I read most of your hubs and I was completely blown away. Your articles on addiction are some of the best I've ever read. I worked with people with AIDS during the '80s and so much of it brings back wrenching memory, most sad, some bittersweet.

      You are a tremendously talented writer. Your work is just hard to stop reading -- not much more I can say than that. Persevere. The Tennessee Williams Festival here in New Orleans has a writing contest each year. I wonder if you've ever considered entering something like that. You would win a trip here if you won and I'd get to meet you!

      Wonderful, gripping work. Voted up and everything else I could check. You and Mr. Mordor are my all-time favorites!


    • mythbuster profile image


      8 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide

      Hey Lorlie, I couldn't participate in the poll because there are only two choices lol how about adding just "Yes" to the poll?

    • howcurecancer profile image


      9 years ago

      A trully help from you, an online friend. Great hub.

    • cindi h profile image

      cindi h 

      9 years ago

      Lorlie- Of all your wonderful hubs (I'm sure) I chose this one. I must say, I like you even more!! You ARE a brave soul to open up a dark side of yourself to complete strangers. I have the utmost respect for people who can admit the ugly truth. Most people spend their lives denying that ugliness which is present even in the best of us. I too have experienced my ugliness and it scared me silly, but I faced it and conquered it, much as you did, although my ugliness was not related to drugs ( I do like the drink). I too am a great fan of true crimes and the depraved ideas of writers such as Stephen King and Dean Koontz. Much happiness to you in all that you do.

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 

      9 years ago from South Africa

      Lorli, I’ve read this one again, and I’m so glad it is all in your past, though it will take only one thought to bring it to the present again. Do you realize you can write a novel based on your life as an addict? You have the talent. To know the true thoughts of an addict – by reading a novel written by an ex-addict - will provide answers to many questions. I can recommend Website Examiner’s services. Here is a link to only one of his hubs – there are more that may inspire you.

      Writing a novel is hard work, but soul-enriching.

      I hope you are fine, my friend, and still enjoying your grandchild.

    • sofs profile image


      9 years ago

      Hi Laurel, you are greatly missed and we want you back here, writing those lovely hubs that you write. Please come back - Love, sophie.

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 

      9 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Laurel I've seen this stuff a million and one times - where I grew up in high school - there are huge chunks of farm ,and - this is where they set labs up because of the locations. The kids are bored and turn to it for lack of so much in their lives. I have a friend who regularly finds dangerous material that has been dumped on her land. It is a bad, bad problem here!

    • Mentalist acer profile image

      Mentalist acer 

      9 years ago from A Voice in your Mind!

      I tried to use Pot casually,but found time and chaos of finding the stuff was prohibitive and expensive...I related to this tale lorlie.;)

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Im sorry to u let u guys in on this but drugs arent bad, but their correct use is discouraged in this our retarded society. Shamanism works... There 's no bad and good about such things, only a more aware usage. Figure this out folks. Never use recreationally

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Laurel, I just saw this now. You are an incredible woman to have had the strength to come out of this and even more for sharing your story. You WILL help someone! As so many have said before me, we all have demons of some sort in our closets. Knowing we are not alone is EVERYTHING! Hugs, dear lady!

    • Lady_E profile image


      9 years ago from London, UK

      I totally admire you for sharing this. Writing about it is therapeutic too. No one in life is perfect and through other articles you have written, I notice you have come along way since then.

      Have a lovely Easter. (Big Hug)

    • Deborah Demander profile image

      Deborah Demander Reno 

      9 years ago from First Wyoming, then THE WORLD

      Thank you for sharing your story. Fascinating.


    • profile image

      Wendi M 

      9 years ago

      Hi Laurel,

      Great hub. I haven't been around Hubpages much lately, but I noticed this hub when I was posting my latest.

      This brought me back in time, when I had to live with my ex-husband's cocaine/crack addiction. While I dove head first into my alcoholism, I (thankfully) never got hooked on the drugs.

      However, now I'm forced to watch my son spiral out of control with his Percocet addiction, and I can't help but scream "Here we go again!"

      Oh well, as they say "Accept the things you cannot change" and that is where I am right now.

      Hope all is well with you and your family.

      Love, Wendi

    • sueroy333 profile image

      Susan Mills 

      9 years ago from Indiana

      Lorilie- I was going through my hubs and noticed I'd missed someone's comment... it was yours. I'm kind of glad I did, because after I thanked you, I decided to come over here and see what you had been up to.

      Healing and helping and being amazing!

      Most of us have heard about what drugs do to people, but you make it personal. You make it real.

      I hope you do write a follow-up hub talking about what has happened to some of the people who were your "friends" while you were in the midst of the drug world.

      You really are doing a service, you may never know the life you save... but I'd bet a million bucks you're saving at least one... probably a lot more!

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Hi M2C-Though I'm sorry you had to go through such a scary time, I am also glad you were frightened out of drug use. God is there if only we listen!

      Thanks so much for coming by!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Lorlie, I come from a long line of addicts/alcoholics. I dabbled a bit for a while when I was a young - young - young adult. It happened once that I had an experience that terrified me into the realization that I might be headed down to the road to addiction and/or madness. GOD stopped me. THANK YOU for sharing your stories. And thank God for preserving you through it all to share them with others who need to hear them.

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Hi Ken, I agree that we can be saved by our respective angels if only we'd listen to their whispers!

      I am very happy that we both made it out alive, the alternative is definitely the pits!

      Thanks for the visit!

    • saddlerider1 profile image


      9 years ago

      Lorlie nice to see you writing again and girl you came back like a powerhouse. You laid your soul bare and showed us the seedy side of life and the drug craze that many of us were involved with.

      I grew up in the sixties and seventies, I had my share of tokes, booze, sex and wild times. I caressed the seedy side of life at times and witnessed first hand the death of one of my friends with an overdose.

      I lived on the edge, yet the dragons breath singed me, did not burn me to a crisp and leave my brains fried on the side of the gutter that I was hanging out in.

      I am a believer in destiny/kismet and being a survivor. I was saved by my angel and he dragged me out of hell kicking and screaming to clean me up, dust me off and set me back on track. Lorie I am so happy that you found your angel as well. Big hugs from me to you and thank you for sharing, you will help many of us. Peace

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Ahh, Wayne! I so appreciate your visit! I am lucky to be alive-and actually thriving-and am grateful to my God and my loved ones for seeing me through those tough times. Writing these tales is a strange outlet for expression, but it seems to be serving me well.

      Thanks dear man, for the comment.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 

      9 years ago from Texas

      Lorlie, you are one lucky young lady just to be alive. This was a fantastic piece of writing and I know that you had to bare your soul to do it. You honesty as a writer is overwhelming. I am a child of the 60's but never touched even the mildest of drugs nor had any curiosity to do so. You piece should be read by every young person in order that they might they twice before going down that road. Thanks so much for sharing your inner-self. WB

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      You must be a very special mom for your boy to call you asking for help. And it seems to me that you've been enlightened about the addiction itself.

      I'll be thinking of you all!

    • gr82bme profile image


      9 years ago from USA

      Lori, thank you. It is very hard. I was the one my son called to say he needed help. It was very hard to see him going through this. We went to the hospital and he has been doing good ever since. Now if only we can get his wife to understand addiction and move on. They are going to marriage counseling and he also goes to counseling for the addiction.

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Standing tall, Ronnie! There was a time that I didn't think I could escape that life. Moving away from LA was one of my best decisions, although I know these drugs are available anywhere.

      Bishop was so new to me that I never traveled into the 'drug places.' I think it's grand progress that I have no idea where to score in my town.

      Take good care, Ronnie-

      I appreciate your visit!

    • profile image

      R. J. Lefebvre 

      9 years ago

      Lorlie6, My last comment to one of your Hubs was: Stand tall! You deserve a lot of credit for facing your reality, I cannot imagine myself existing in your shoes and learn how to deal with it. I'd like to consider myself as one of your supporters along with your other Hubbers. In the end, your the winner, not the adiction: Stand Tall!!

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Martie-I'm terribly glad we didn't fall into this darkness together, but your darkness was equally horrifying. I've been lucky in relationships and can't imagine the horror you've described. We are both survivors and have much to share! Bless you for coming by!

      Hi Karanda-Thanks so much for coming here to comment. I am blessed with wonderful, understanding people who have also been down the road of drug addiction. We support each other and choose to talk about these days in order to lessen the impact of addiction. It works! Thanks for the comment.

      Eiddwen-I am thrilled to see you here, dear lady! You've always been very special to me, my Welsh wonder! You know, when writing these tales, I am writing them out of my system, which is very freeing. Much love to you, dear one, I thank you for your words.

      gr82bme-Please never give up on your son, hopefully he will overcome this addiction. Believe me, watching an addict go through the process can be as tough as going through it as the addict.

      I'll be praying for you and yours.

      Hi S.J.-Getting back on your feet after such devastation is something I've been proud of, though I do cringe as I recall some of these 'adventures'. Thank God it's in my past now.

      Thanks for stopping by!

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Green Lotus-Your words are greatly appreciated! I'm hoping that the new algorithm doesn't penalize me for being so personal, it seems they're after hubs like this. But that won't stop me!

      Thanks for coming by.

      Audrey-Bless your heart for such kudos! I am glad to share these tales, I suppose they've made me who I am today.

      Thank you for stopping by for a read.

      Nelliana-"It's sick and I'm not" is a perfect statement when it comes to addictions, and you're right, they can encompass virtually any activity you can name-or imagine. I want to tell you that you are one writer here on HP that inspires and your encouragement is highly valued-thanks for coming by.

      Tipoague-I absolutely adore Stan's writings, and he does give me a 'pick me up' when I need one. As to your comment, I am so very happy to hear that you resisted pressures and expressed your distaste for what they were doing with children around. I am a new grandmother, and the thought of cooking meth-or whatever-with him around makes me ill. I am so glad to be past all of this in order to fully appreciate him. Thanks so much for the visit.

      Hi Jim-I, too, am grateful to God for this second chance at life. As I told tipoague, the existence of my new grandson has given me a new lease on life, and without God, I don't think I would even notice. Children are absolutely miraculous!

      Thanks so much for coming by to comment.

    • ahostagesituation profile image


      9 years ago

      So good to see you writing again, Laurel. You are amazing. And you know now that if you can do this, if you can come back from this, you can do absolutely anything. It is not ever about falling, because anyone can do that, it's always about getting back up. I saw this this morning and was thrilled. Way to go, and way to keep going, my friend.

    • gr82bme profile image


      9 years ago from USA

      Lori, my son is going through an addiction right now. This hub is very encouraging. Thank you for sharing

    • Eiddwen profile image


      9 years ago from Wales

      Hi lorlie,

      So nice to see you on here again my friend.You are a fighter and always will be. It is touching that you are so brutally honest but at the same time don't be too hard on yourself !!

      You are a lovely person and i now think back to ten months ago when I joined everyone here on HP. You were the one who showed me the ropes and I have not looked back since.

      Believe me I can understand that it is good to be 100% honest but always remember that loving and caring lady that you are to the core.

      HubPages is a caring and loving community and you are a member who is at the very heart of this great family.

      Everyone loves you Laurel and they love you for who you really are.

      Again i say so nice to see you back and don't be too long before publishing another hub.

      Your story is simply going to help many others on their rocky paths.

      I push all the buttons on this one.

      Take care


    • Karanda profile image

      Karen Wilton 

      9 years ago from Australia

      Laurel I can't imagine how difficult this must have been for you to write then share with the world. While writing can be cathartic it can also be incredibly draining when dredging through painful experiences from the past.

      Remember to look after yourself with plenty of healthy foods and get lots of rest. I hope you have someone close by to give you the real life hugs you deserve. Take care.

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 

      9 years ago from South Africa

      Lorlie, knowing my own rebellious nature and urge to challenge authority I would have been your best friend in crime if I had only half the opportunity. But fortunately – in spite of the unhappiness it brought – I was captured at the age of 16 in flight by a strict, male narcissist who kept me thoroughly under his thumb for 20 years. My only escape was religion. Fortunately (again) I made contact with drugs and alcohol in my adult life (after 35), when I was wise enough – after one almost fatal experience - to fear it as I fear deadly scorpions. I am so glad you’ve survived, and I want to suggest that you don’t ever blame yourself, but change your experiences into a rescue-tool for people captured in the claws of addiction. You can write the most awesome stories – the truth, but changed into fiction with all those horrible truths in the underworld you’ve managed to escape. We should never stop to ‘preach’ the destructiveness of drugs. You are a survivor able to become a significant soldier in the war against drugs. Only love and hugs from me to you :)))

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image


      9 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      I can relate to this in many ways. I too was a seventies child. I was voted the guy least likely to turn thirty my senior year in high school. I did my best to prove them righ. When I became a father I was given a purpose to live. There really is a God.

      This was excellent and from the heart. It gets a perfect score from me. Up, useful, awesome and beautiful.

      You're going to help a lot of people girl.


    • tlpoague profile image


      9 years ago from USA

      Dear Lorlie,

      I knew I would be seeing some great work soon. Sorry I didn't comment before now. I have found that life hands us many lessons and it is up to us how we handle it. Congratulations on kicking your addiction. I wouldn't be surprised if many of those close to you may not understand why you did it, or agree with it. Whether one is fighting the illness or watching and helping another struggle with it, it is a daily struggle that sometimes feels as if you are being swallowed into an abyss.

      I have watched drugs, alcohol, greed, and money destroy families. My first encounter at hard core drugs was at my grandmother's funeral. My cousins were cooking it on the stove a few feet away from children of all ages from babies to teens. The fierce smell awoke me to a cloud of smoke and giggles. Some may have thought I was too young to understand what was going on, (I was 16 at the time,) but I knew in my heart it was wrong. My mother said it was because of my religious upbringing, but I think it was my moral compass. How could grown adults subject a young child to this with no remorse? I sat there on the floor with six different arms handing me crack, heroine, cigarettes, pot, and alcohol. To this day I am amazed that I was able to turn them down while chewing their butts without any problems. This may sound arrogant on my part, but by the time I was done with the guilt trip on them for doing this in front of children, they took their supplies and made sure they didn't do in front of my siblings and I again. I told them I was high on life, full of humor, and their negativity would drag me down, squelching my creativity. I found out later on how lucky I was playing with fire. There were men in the family that were molesters and it didn't matter if you were family or not. A few years later, I found out that most of them had died from drug overdoses or an illness related to their hard life style.

      I can say that the smell of the drugs, the allergic reaction to the pot, and cigarettes giving me a headache, kept me from dabbling in them. As for alcohol, I have had many opportunities to get drunk, but could only bring myself to drink a little. I can name on one hand how many times I have actually made myself get drunk. To this day though, I am surrounded by those that have to have one substance or another to make it through the day. I help them when I can and refrain from the lectures. They get enough of that from others in their circle. And, I pray for them.

      Again I say congrats and great hub! I look forward to reading more. It sounds like there are many intriguing stories to be found behind your layers of life. Just tell the negativity that it is squelching your desires to be creative and full of humor. (If you ever need a pick me up...just re-read a Stan Fletcher challenge.)

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 

      9 years ago from TEXAS

      I've liked you as a person on here from the beginning, not knowing your history. As I've become aware of it - through your honesty and clear self-image, both then and now - I like you even more. i admire authenticity and you personify it.

      Yes, I so agree that we all have some sort of "addiction". Sometimes we call it our "passion for. . . whatever", including high-minded things or our "focus on . . .", sometimes it's even our salvation - whether religious or personal - the thing that keeps the light on for us. That, too can be an obsession.

      Early on I realized my compulsive-obsessive trends and tried to keep them more moderated. Balance became an obsession - LOL. Sometimes I didn't want to be moderate - better to write all night, all day and all the next night and get it written; - - - or sew or play the piano or - - what ever it happened to be. I have overindulged in shopping in my time. Now I may be overindulging in not shopping. I hate to "shop" - for fun - LOL. (except to stay healthy - but that's an addiction too is it not?)

      In my early years I was bulimic - before it had a name. I thought I was the only person in the world who "did that". The pressures to be this or that, to excel or to just get by - whatever - seemed to bring it on. If my eldest sister approved of me, so what if it meant upchucking my meal behind the bush in the yard in the dark? But eventually - I didn't like me doing it so I stopped & luckily I was more addicted to health than to that. Fact is, it was so easy for me that I could do it right now if I chose to. I just don't want to or choose to. It's sick and I'm not. I know how to keep my body the way it feels right without resorting to such idiocy.

      Counsel self: Just don't put it to your lips if it's poison to you -- whether food, tobacco, or any other poison. THINK. It works.

      I tried drinking and smoking cigarettes at age 12 and found I detested both violently and didn't drink any again till in my 40s, and then only to a buzz - never a drunk; I hate being out of it. I have never smoked again. I can't claim any kind of kudos for that - I just despised being like that and hated all that chemical stuff that went with tobacco and lighter fluid. I was more addicted to not doing it than to - - - well - you know.

      Sex is always tempting for people, especially young and vital people, which I was and still am Again - luckily - the object of my interest back then was too honorable. But I was quite willing. Later my pride was more important.

      In the final analysis, it isn't a matter of fixing blame or finger-pointing. It is trying to find oneself - loving the person one IS, not some glorified image painted by others or by society - but the real inner person, who is so very valuable that one simply wants to focus on that entity, that uniquely valuable PERSON and let all the stuff that isn't that person go, like sculpting David out of a piece of stone.

      I'm glad you've seen fit to share your story. It is good to realize that someone like you could get tangled up in that darkness, that your being could almost have been gobbled up in it - but wasn't, ultimately.

      That is such a powerful message, Lorlie. You are a good example of triumph of a human spirit over a very challenging foe. Thank you, dear.

    • akirchner profile image

      Audrey Kirchner 

      9 years ago from Washington

      Lorlie - You know how I feel about your courage (I hope) and you display it time and time again. I think facing up to our weaknesses is how we show our strength and you have shown yours many, many times.

      I too hope this hub helps many struggling with addiction. It is something that just overwhelms your life and takes you places you thought you'd never go. I've seen it and I again applaud your beautiful handling of a painful subject.

      Courage always as you have it in spades!

    • Green Lotus profile image


      9 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      lorlie - There is something about your hubs (all of them) that is so compelling. Maybe because you write from the heart so honestly, fearlessly and without judgement. Your work here is a book in progress. I look forward to each chapter.

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Hi Pamela-It's always a treat to see you, and today is no exception. I do hope someone benefits from this tale, I know it is cleansing to get it out there for me.

      Thanks for the read.

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Hi ahorseback-I know we can be addicted to virtually anything, and if I honestly look back on my behaviors over the years, I can see myself 'getting into' depression and anxiety. Letting go of those things is letting go of a huge part of oneself.

      Thanks for coming by.

      @Seeker7-I don't know if I'd call myself 'brave,' maybe 'foolhardy!' But I really appreciate your words.

      Thanks for the visit.

      @Uninvited Writer-I do hope that the 'ladies' out there can benefit from this tale. I can't believe this story as I look on it today.

      Thanks for reading.

      @Micky Dee-Ahh, choices! As I said, I tend to choose roads full of potholes and am amazed I'm still kicking.

      Bless you, too, dear man!

      @Hi De Greek-Courage comes in so many guises, yes? I thank you for stopping by and commenting.

      @Sofs-Great to see you, and wonderful to be writing again. It's friends like you that make it all worthwhile. Writing this stuff down is quite healing, and if I can help someone, it's all worth it.

      Thanks so much!

      @Susie Duzy-As they say, living well is the best revenge, and therein lies the encouragement. I made it and am loving each and every day.

      Thank you for reading.

      @thoughtforce-Pretty? Absolutely not! ;) But all those years a beautiful lesson has been learned.

      I appreciate your coming by.

      @Austinstar-You've given me the idea for a hub-I'd really not considered it until I read your comment. But just for you, no, John is still out there.

      Until the next hub then,


    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      9 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Lorie, I am glad you're able to share your story and you never know if it just helps one person it so worthwhile. This is a very good hub.

    • Austinstar profile image


      9 years ago from Somewhere near the heart of Texas

      Even if you save one person from the life it will make a difference.

      Don't forget to let us know have everyone fared to date. Did your brother in law make it back from the streets?

      How did you quit? I would love to break my addiction to food.

    • thougtforce profile image

      Christina Lornemark 

      9 years ago from Sweden

      Addiction can be so many different things, and we all have some addictions. I am so sorry that you chose this kind but glad you made it. You have many important stories to tell! Important, honest and a sensitive hub! You tell it like it is and life isn’t always pretty. Thanks

    • SUSIE DUZY profile image


      9 years ago from Delray Beach, Florida

      Good hub. Very encouraging.

    • sofs profile image


      9 years ago

      Lorie, I am glad to see you back... keep writing... so honest, so brutal yourself some mercy....I am glad that you live to tell your story and I am sure you are going to help many (((((hugs))))

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 

      9 years ago from UK

      I wish you courage...

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 

      9 years ago

      Thank you Lorlie. This is really a great read. There are too may choices out there. Sometimes the logical for many aren't attractive to us. God bless you dear one!

    • Uninvited Writer profile image

      Susan Keeping 

      9 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

      Another excellent hub, thanks for sharing your story with us. It'll help so many others.

    • Seeker7 profile image

      Helen Murphy Howell 

      9 years ago from Fife, Scotland

      Hi Lorlie,

      What a brave lady you are! And I don't mean going into the shadows physically when you needed the drugs you were addicted to. But going into your mind and emotions and bringing them to the front in this great piece of writing is awesome. You are a superb writer and you bring scenes into the mind with great clarity. Keep writing you will go far.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Hi Lorlie, it's so nice to see you writing again, at times painfull I know! The scourge of mankind is his [her ] addictions . I have watched , as you have too , the absolute wasting of beautiful lives. And now I know that everyone has an addiction to something! It might be just shopping for shoes or eating cupcakes . Mine was , believe it or not , depression and anxiety! Not knowing it at the time ! Thats another story! I hope all is well with you and you know I love your writing!

    • lorlie6 profile imageAUTHOR

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      Thanks so much, Bob, for stopping by to comment. I can still smell it, too. What strange memories. Alcohol was my nemesis for many years and I am grateful crack and booze are in my past.

      Once again, thanks for commenting.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Much empathy with your story. Alcohol was my main problem for 20 years, but I also became involved with cocaine, both as a user, and small-time dealer, when it was still possible (70's). I went to Baranquilla buying with 40,000 in my boots and got busted by the DAS. I ended up in Huntsville.

      But I never touched crack as my times were just before it became the rage and, as a non-smoker, I liked things I drank and tooted rather than smoking. But I saw what crack did to good friends through the years: the evasion, violence, lying to friends and family to get money. I can still smell that stuff; like the Devil's breath! I guess we are both lucky...Bob


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)