The True Face Of Heroin Addiction. 7

Heroin KillsThey say a picture paints a thousand words and for me this picture does just that. This is the real face of heroin, the harsh reality of heroin addiction.

This picture was posted by Meagan Johnson on social media. In the picture is her sister, Kelly. Kelly died from a heroin overdose. This is the reality of heroin use. I feel compelled to share with you the words that Meghan wrote to accompany this picture.

“This image is forever engraved in my brain. I didn’t just lose my sister from an overdose; I sat with her for three days while she was hooked up to all these machines helping her breath and keeping her heart beating.

For three days I begged her to wake up.

For three days I told her how bad I needed her and begged her not to die on me.

The last thing she ever did was stick a needle in her arm. I know if she could go back she would have got clean and would have saved herself and my family from this nightmare. But now it’s too late and so many lives have been changed forever because of it.

This picture is for everyone who is thinking about using just one more time. Please, don’t put your family through what mine had to go through. Please be strong and don’t pick up. Life is hard, it’s full of pain and heartache, and heroin will make things better in the moment, but in the end they will ALWAYS get ten times worse.

You might think you have it under control, but you don’t. Heroin will ruin your life and then it will take it from you, and if you don’t believe me then you are lying to yourself.

Even if you don’t use yourself, if you suspect someone around you is using please, please don’t stay silent. Speak up, even if your friend gets mad at you; speak up, because it could save a life. And I promise you, no matter how angry they get with you, one day they will thank you for helping them when they couldn’t help themselves.

Heroin is killing our generation, ruthlessly and relentlessly, it will take your brother, your sister, your child, and your friends. So please, if you think you are helping someone by keeping their secrets and not telling anyone about their drug use, you are being part of the problem, not the solution.

Heroin kills. It doesn’t care if you have a mother or a father, or siblings waiting at home for you. If you use heroin, it will eventually kill you, and then you will never be able to go home and see your friends and family ever again.”

Meagan is not from Somersworth but I know of several families that live right here in the city, that have been through the same agony.  Meghan took the brave decision to share this picture and her words in the hope that it might make a difference, to someone, anyone.

I’m sharing them with you, in the hope that you will see this drug for what it is: a stone cold killer.

Even if you have no compassion for the addict, it’s the families that often pay the price of addiction. They are the ones left to pick up the pieces. The ones left fighting on the front line, often alone with little, if any help.

This is the reality of heroin use, and this is the true face of a drug that is here in Somersworth, right now. 

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7 thoughts on “The True Face Of Heroin Addiction.

  1. Reply dan Jul 29,2015 9:51 pm

    People using this sh*t will be very happy one minute then the next edgy when its wearing off. Pinned out, itching nose, red face, sweating, smoking like a chimney, very talkative, sometimes bad hygiene but not always. Dark circles around eyes, glassy eyes. Always on the phone or running around at random times of day/night! Symptoms of not having it. No communication with anyone, depressed, groggy, agitated, restless, sick/flu like symptoms. Basically when its not around its like the world is falling down on them. Usually the red face and being hot all the time along with the nose itching is a dead giveaway. True stuff right here,not Google BS posted online. Coming from someone who has been a victim of it off and on for years.I hope that every POS dealers selling it, gets the key thrown away when they get caught. Its a dark world folks! Something so good can be so bad at the same time. Absolute hell on earth to come off of. It will turn the toughest,biggest person into the biggest bitch when they run out.I watched my own friend turn my best friend into an addict and he wouldn’t listen. Now he’s a full blown addict in a matter of months. He will do anything he can to get it.From someone who experienced it first hand and in the mix for years..I would never, ever, in my life introduce this to a friend!

  2. Reply Josh Kern Jul 26,2015 1:03 pm

    Heroin isn’t killing people, they are killing themselves. There needs to be more empowerment of users to control their lives rather than perpetuating the culture of powerlessness and victimization. Whatever the circumstances, people choose to pick up a needle knowing full well what to expect. Nobody can claim ignorance of what this poison does. We all have access to popular media (which seldom glamorizes heroin use) and are in more than two or three degrees separated from a heroin-related death or a recovered loved one. If you have to be the bad guy to intervene then do it. If you can’t take some insults and a couple punches to kill this demon for somebody then you’ve failed them as if you gave them the needle yourself.

  3. Reply Helpful tips Jul 22,2015 6:26 pm

    they could vomit first thing in the morning…. if they use alot they will most likely be going through withdrawel if they do not have it…. which yes consist of vomiting, muscle aches, bone aches, trouble sleeping, restless leg, basically look and feel like you have been hit by a train…… if they are using you can look at the person’s eyes their eyes will be pinned out… meaning the black in their eye is like a needle point. they nod out a lot if they are sitting still for long periods.

  4. Reply Michael Jul 22,2015 3:43 pm

    Carol Anne, that is a great question. Sometimes the signs are not obvious, other times they are. You are correct, needle marks might not be present, or visible to the eye. Many users inject everywhere but their arms to avoid detection.

    There are some great resources online, a simple Google search for “signs of heroin use” brought up a list of websites listing signs and symptoms of abuse.

    A few I found useful:
    http://www.narconon.org/blog/heroin-addiction/10-signs-of-hidden-heroin-addiction/
    http://drugabuse.com/library/heroin-abuse/
    http://www.new-hope-recovery.com/center/2013/08/08/heroin-abuse-warning-signs/

    Based on personal experience(seeing friends struggle):
    -Never having money, yet working. This includes asking for money, stealing, pawning items
    – Lack of personal hygiene. I have seen some really pretty people take a dive in the looks and caring for themselves dept.
    – Dope sickness – not being able to get out of bed. Mimics flu symptoms.
    – Avoiding eye contact

    This article makes a great point. If you suspect someone of using opiates and love them, do not give up on them, continue hammering them, continue to offer support. I have seen people recover, cases where individuals seemed completely helpless/hopeless.

    Stay vigilant.

  5. Reply Meg Jul 22,2015 2:44 pm

    @Carol Anne Ortega..

    The signs of a “user” would be dilated pupils, nodding out. Some have manic behavior.. If they are snorting it then they will be sifting a lot! Some bruise easily, (mostly due to shooting it). In a lot of cases u may not see needle marks. Some users will shoot up between the toes, fingers, neck, in a tattoo, etc. Sudden Weight loss, and many users, especially woman get sores from scratching a lot. An opiate user gets itchy, and they scratch and pick at their skin, mostly faces, a ton. This creates sores.. And they are very visible..
    If they are out of opieates, they could vomit, have diarrhea, irritability, sweating, lots of anxiety, no energy.. They may try to just sleep. Also, they get restless leg syndrome… And i wouldnt doubt it if some either quit their jobs, got fired, or called out due to the “sickness”These are some typical signs of a user. You can Google it and see if u can find more.. Good luck to U and IR friend

  6. Reply Carol Anne Ortega Jul 21,2015 10:31 pm

    Other than needle marks what are the signs to look for in a heroin user
    Do they vomit a lot first thing in the morning? Please tell me how to know if someone you care about is using this crap because I don’t know much other than it is a death sentence .
    The person I’m referring to does not have needle marks but it can be sniffed
    Please help me to learn more about this because I think a lot of people don’t know the details of the effects of this destroyer , sincerelyA concerned Mom

    • Reply Jenne Jul 22,2015 10:40 am

      I’m no expert on the subject to be honest but I will be asking the experts over the coming weeks as think this is a common question. In the meantime here is a link to the DrugFreeNH.org website which has some useful information on it and that page specifically talks about heroin.

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