Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Interview With An Ibogaine Treatment Provider

The following is taken from an interview conducted by email of an ibogaine treatment provider in the U.S
Due to ibogaine being a schedule one drug in America I have kept the identity of the interviewee

  Hi S, could we start by you telling us a little bit about you?

Sure. I’m a middle aged mom of three, an ex-nurse and an ex-alcoholic, here on the west coast, USA. I went through my own iboga journey in 2009. It was a home session, which I would not repeat. I’ll have a person experienced with iboga around for my next time. But it did allow me to walk away from alcohol, and opened me up to myself. I’ve come further since iboga than I had in the 40+ years preceding, and I’ve long been interested in self exploration and personal evolution. Iboga is a huge jump start for self transformation.

 What got you interested in carrying out Ibogaine treatments?

I knew before I took it myself that I would be working with it. I had a very strong gut feeling about that. My own journey confirmed this feeling. There is no denying the tremendous healing potential of iboga, and not just for addictions. I came out of my journey wanting everyone in the world to take it, lol. I’ve since mellowed, but do know that there is nothing like this in the world. How could I not make this available? It has been a striking series of ‘coincidences’ that I have been able to keep working with this good root in all its forms. I will continue as long as I can, as long as it is what is in front of me to do.

 Do you think the risks of providing the service you do in a country where ibogaine is schedule one are worthwhile?

I do. I don’t say this lightly, either. I have two of my children still at home with me. I have to be careful, I take certain precautions. At the same time, I feel like iboga isn’t really ‘on the radar’ in any significant way. Nobody is getting rich, nobody is dying. It would also be a sticky mess for those who don’t want to deal with iboga at all were it to make it into court.

What are your views on the legal status of ibogaine, do you think re-scheduling is a good idea and given the definition of a schedule one drug (no medicinal value and high potential for abuse) how do you think the government can justify this?

I don’t have strong views on the legal status. Iboga itself is quite beyond laws, and I’ve never been drawn to overt activism. If iboga were less restrictively scheduled, and in the hands of the medical establishment, there would still be a huge need for underground services. For price, for atmosphere and for the loving support necessary to allow a session to be all that it can.
How can the government justify keeping it on schedule one? The government doesn’t need to justify, lol. Look at the wars we wage, look at the state of the school system, look at poverty, oh hell, no honest justification necessary. The government is a convoluted labyrinth of power and money games.

 What kind of service do you offer?

Addiction interruption and psycho spiritual iboga sessions. I use root bark, total alkaloid extract, precipitated/purified total alkaloid extract and ibogaine hydrochloride. Which product(s) I use depends on the individual and the reasons for seeking iboga. I work with a partner as often as possible, and we provide a safe, conducive environment for the experience. I incorporate both western medical techniques, and as much ritual as the individual is comfortable with. I have not been initiated in Bwiti, which is the African religion using iboga as a sacrament, but I have worked along side Bwitists as they have held sessions. I found that there are many similarities in the type of Bwiti I saw to other traditional transformative rituals, and many good practices there that support psychologically as well as spiritually an individual’s readiness for a session. As you know, iboga is far more than ‘just a detox’.

Just how risky is it performing treatments in the U.S? What specific challenges do you face?

A true quantitative risk assessment I have not performed.
When I am speaking with someone interested in a session, there are many, many questions asked. I need to see an EKG/ECG, and for many, liver panel results. On top of that, I have an application for folk to fill out that covers medical conditions and history, as well as diet, psychological health, goals and more. I use that information, and I trust my gut. I have had quite a few instances where I could not work with someone based on either test results or a strong gut reaction. I am grateful to the clinics who will handle the riskier medical cases. Based on this screening process, the risks are greatly reduced.
Challenges specific to the underground, I guess primary would be the difficulty ensuring the integrity of a person’s reported drug use. When someone goes to a clinic, at least those I am readily familiar with, they do not begin  their session that night. They are stabilised and observed. In underground work, that unfortunately is not usually an option. I have to trust that the person is using what they tell me they are using, that they have taken the recommended supplements, that their diet has been modified, all of it. When I meet with someone, I have my own assessment skills, but rely on their report. I have had people misrepresent facts to me before. Basically, iboga is quite safe. It is safer when the person considering it is completely honest.

 Tell us some of your success stories..!

My only success story is the one I’m living. All the rest are not my story to tell. I have seen many people walk away from their drugs of choice and not return. This has taken effort, diligence and courage on their part. It is the person eating iboga, and iboga itself who are doing the hard work, who can claim ‘success’. Me, I just try to stay open to being able to facilitate, to making the environment as safe and conducive as possible. It’s always an honor to do this work and I take credit only for my desire to stay present and be open.

What are your views on,  ibogaine versus methadone or suboxone when it comes to opiate withdrawal and long term abstinence?

Oh, my goodness, heavens. Very simply, ibogaine affords many the opportunity to examine their thoughts, emotions and behaviors and take responsibility for their lives. Ibogaine provides many with emotional healing, and a window of a few weeks to a few months without intolerable cravings and compulsions. Neither methadone nor suboxone can facilitate the aforementioned. You are talking about using these long acting opiates as replacers or as detox? If used as replacers, the person isn’t abstinent. Harm reduction, probably, if going from street drugs to these prescriptions, but it’s not abstinence. If used for detox, how long do you want to draw out your withdrawal? Iboga is the most humane detox on the planet. In many instances, three days, no withdrawal symptoms, and you’re done. You’re clean. If there is some breakthrough withdrawal, a little more iboga can knock that right out. If someone gets lingering waves, there are simple over the counter supplements which help. Again, iboga asks a person to take responsibility. Once the drug is gone, there is still the same life to walk back into. What will you change? Your friends? Your routines? Your level of self care? The willingness to change these things can do a lot for the predicting of ‘success’ if it is defined as long term abstinence.

 Do you think a patients age and length of habit has a bearing on the success of the treatment?

Length of habit I have not seen play a big part. I think there is a personality style that seeks external sources of emotional relief, whether it’s heroin, shoplifting, fits of rage, overeating, methamphetamine, etc. A person may have only been addicted for a couple years, but their personality has sought escape much longer. As for age, I have seen the most profound changes in folk over 30. This has just been my experience, and I have no data or even theories to explain it. That’s not true, I always have a theory...

 Do you worry about complications when treating people? How do you avoid such situations?

Yes, I worry! But I try to do it before we meet for the session. At the session I’m just alert. It is far easier not to worry when working with a partner, as well. The screening process does much to ensure there will be no emergencies.

 I’ve heard stories about ibogaine clinics in Mexico facing threats of violence from the Mexican drug cartels, is this true?

I haven’t heard that. I know there is a difference between the border towns and deeper into Mexico, but I don’t know much. I’ve yet to go very far south into Mexico. But I do have a soft spot for Tijuana. It’s as safe as any big city. 

      Finally, what advice would you give someone seeking treatment with ibogaine?

Someone who feels iboga may help them should do as much research as they can before they talk to any providers. Ask the providers many questions, and be as honest as you possibly can when they in turn ask questions of you.
Even if you intend to do this on your own, it can be helpful and instructive to talk to those who work with iboga. This may be one of the single most important events of your life. Prepare for it, take it seriously.

      Thank-you so much!

For anyone interested in treatment for addiction, there are some links on my links page to treatment providers, there's also a wealth of information out there on the internet.
Ibogaine is a spiritual journey and as such all I can recommend is that you find your own path, do your research and don't let anyone talk you into/out of it!

Heroin Run By Amateurs

Things have changed a lot on the heroin scene, even in the small time I've been using.
In 1997 when I started, the heroin market in the UK was flooded with (if you believe the reports) with 40-60% pure heroin... 

There were so many dealers, if you got an introduction to a new guy they would often give a tester before you bought!

I've seen things change (in London at least) ever since.

I used to only deal with one or two regular guys, that although were usually creative with their timings they  didn't really mess you around too much as there was always someone to take they're place. 

These guys would usually reward your loyalty with small amounts of heroin 'ticked' (loaned) and would generally look after you if you were stuck and desperate.

Not any more.. !

I guess as people got arrested, and after the quantity of decent heroin dropped, at the beginning of the 2000s, things began got more difficult.

Incidentally this seemed to coincide with the war in Iraq

The dealers' solution was to start using teenagers to 'run' for them, the main reason to avoid arrest themselves. Ultimately the police are far less likely to stop and search a twelve year old on a bike than a guy in a car!

This is a serious problem, kids of school leaving age that would otherwise get into work or training are being snapped up by unscrupulous dealers. These kids just see dollar signs, why would they want to go to college or start working if they have the opportunity to make a fast buck for very little work.

I don't think they even realise the full implications of what they are doing! It gives them 'street cred' and respect.. and unfortunately, in a time where kids fight over postcodes as they have little else this counts for a lot.

I feel guilty buying from these kids, but being a heroin addict I have little choice! I look at them and think 'if only your mum knew what you were doing'! I'm sure she wouldn't be happy.

So, my point is, the heroin and crack scene is now, literally, run by kids...!

Kids that want respect and the kudos they get from running drugs, they revel in making us wait around on street corners and then giving us attitude when they do finally turn up. Thing is, they know we will wait....

All more reason for me to stop using and feeding into this cycle.

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Ibogaine Interview Coming Soon!

I've lined up an interview with an ibogaine provider from the U.S

Will be putting it on here next week at some point.. Should be interesting to get some idea of the difficulties faced in a country where ibogaine is schedule one and providers face imprisonment for even possessing it!

Friday, 24 December 2010


So I had enough money in my bank to just about get through the holiday, about £200 for a week and a half... (this is London)

I checked it this morning and £150 has dissapeared! It came out today (whatever it is) and the bank can't even tell me what is is... AND it's christmas stupid bloody eve so I now can't even find out till Monday..!

I actually punched a wall for the first time in my life.. why do I have such shit luck!? Ive now got £40 for nearly two weeks so anything I was going to do is now cancelled as that will all go on gas and electricity!

Things like this always happen to me

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

The Addict Mind

Understanding an addicts way of thinking must be frustrating and difficult to comprehend for family, friends and partners.

The problem is that living with an addiction brings a whole host of daily battles that a person without an addiction just can't comprehend.
We have the reputation of being liars and thieves which is difficult to shake even if we ever attain abstinence.

Addiction is a vicious cycle, we all use for different reasons initially, most often to escape something in our lives we cant deal with. 
Addicts are often damaged individuals that unfortunately find solace in drugs or alcohol.

Underneath the hard exterior is in most cases a shy, sensitive and kind soul that has had to become hard to survive.

We lie to our loved ones under the misconception of protecting them, we don't want them to worry, or to realise the extent of the grip our drug of choice has over us.
Unfortunately this is seen as dishonesty and they understandably find our actions and words infuriating!

When I don't tell my mum about a relapse it's not because I revel in the lie and deceit it's because I don't want her to worry!
There is nothing she can do to help me and I see no point in her getting upset over something that is out of her control.

Similarly, when I don't admit to my partner that I've used it's because I love him and want to keep our relationship together.
Now from his point of view he would rather I was honest, it's the lies he find most difficult to deal with.
It's not easy being in a relationship where one half has an addiction, from either perspective.
Saying that, in relationships where both parties use, the so called 'co-dependent's', the couple bounce off each-other, relationships like these are destructive and unhealthy and very rarely work out in the long run.

When you live with a physical addiction to a drug it takes over everything, every day needs to be planned, money needs to be made/found, drugs ordered and saved for the morning so you can get up and function.
Nothing will get in the way of making sure you have that supply arranged for that day at least, many people stockpile so they don't have to go through the daily rigmarole..
This unfortunately means that things like maintaining relationships, family events and holidays and even basic things like personal hygiene go out the window when the clock is ticking on the withdrawal.
We know it hurts those around us, but when withdrawal is creeping up on you it has a way of taking over 100% of your thinking, nothing else matters until you have had your hit, then you can go on with your day.
To us our morning dose is like anyone else taking a pee in the morning.. we don't have an option!

After destroying ourselves with the guilt of what we are doing to our families and loved ones and burying our heads further in the sand we usually try and clean up.. people usually fail at first and start to try and justify our using, a lot of addicts come to a stage where they give up trying to get clean and decide that this is they're lot, they will always be on drugs and with this acceptance comes a (false) sense of peace.
We question what exactly the problem is, why can't our loved ones just accept us as we are?
What we don't see in our heroin fog is that to the people that know us best we are like ghosts, shells of our former selves... We are focused on nothing but obtaining and taking our DOC.
We are fundamentally different on drugs, whether we think we are or not!

Essentially taking drugs every day isn't conducive to maintaining close and loving bonds to those around us and we have to accept that to move into a stage where we can start recovering.

Behind the drugs I am a person still, with feelings, emotions, passions and goals in life, balancing an addiction with a relationship is complicated and trying.

Coping with the guilt that comes with the untruths feeds into my using.
It's been said that addicts will find any excuse to use, I'm happy, I have a hit. I'm sad, I use to blot out the pain. I've had some good news, I want a hit to celebrate... etc etc....

Learning to deal with life on it's terms after using drugs for a large majority of ones life is challenging and difficult to achieve.

I want to be clean, and be able to live a 'normal' life, I deserve it and my long suffering partner does too!
Coming to a place where I  want to be clean has taken a long time and a lot of heartache, part of my problem has always been my low self esteem, I don't value myself enough to warrant a shot at life.
This mind-set has dogged me my whole life, I wish I knew where it came from!

Superficially I know I'm a good person with a lot to give, I'm gifted musically, I'm kind and have always had a humanitarian, peaceful ethos, but underneath all that, sub-consciously, I have this self deprecating, self sabotaging element of my personality that seems determined to fuck myself over at every opportunity.

I guess this is the root of my problems and is what I probably need to face up to and understand and probably never will without some serious soul searching and probably the help of a psychologist!

I feel I am getting closer to that day all the time though...

I will not stop until I get there, it's not in my nature to give up...fundamentally I am a survivor and I will jump every hurdle and hoop it takes to find acceptance of who and what I am!

Monday, 20 December 2010

Bloody Snow!

So I've been waiting two weeks now for my Ibogaine to arrive in the post..

There's no bloody flights into and out of the UK so obviously that includes post planes...

What annoys me the most is that I paid £40 for courier delivery which normally takes 4-5 days, I may as well have paid the £6 snail mail option!

I really bloody need it, I'm really struggling with not relapsing, there's only so much PAWS one person can take!
It's unbearable, every day, constant physical pain, the minutes feel like hours and it feels like it's never gonna end!

Stupid UK, everything grinds to a halt when it snows here! Other countries with year round snow cope with it!
It's embarrassing, it snows a bit and there's no flights in or out of the UK for days, the roads are closed off, the buses empty they're passengers and the trains all stop..


Sunday, 19 December 2010

Treatment Options For Opiate Addicts

Realising you are addicted to anything is difficult and traumatic, admitting it to others is even harder.

I remember when it first dawned on me that the flu like symptoms I was getting when not using heroin were actually withdrawal symptoms!
I dealt with it by burying my head in the sand and taking more heroin....

It took a while until I was ready to actually deal with the situation and start looking for help.
I initially went to my GP and was prescribed methadone, a long acting opiate that's regularly used in the UK for heroin addicts.
I was fairly naive I guess, and didn't understand just how powerful a drug methadone is, typically heroin has a half life of around 1.5-7 hours, averaging at around 4, which means an average addict having to use at least twice a day, often more.
Methadone is designed to have a 15-60 hour half life, but it averages 22 which builds up in the body the longer you take it. There is a lot of variation person to person though and I  like many others found I had to split the dose over the day or I would be withdrawing by night time, this is one of the inherent problems of the 'one size fits all' treatment of addicts.
It's a myth that it gets into your bones, but it does sit in fat cells.

Methadone is the gold standard in opiate addiction treatment, even though it only has a 4% success rate!
It's cheap, can be prescribed by GP's without a home office license and gives users a chance to get they're lives together.

Methadone can also prescribed in an injectable form although it's rare now.

Newer drugs used in maintenance are subutex/buprenorphine/temgesic.
Buprenorphine is a partial antagonist as well as agonist, meaning it binds to the opiate receptors but also has a partial blocking effect meaning users can't get high if they take heroin (although many claim you can, especially on low doses)
It also means if buprenorphine is taken shortly after heroin the user will suffer precipitated withdrawals, the blocking effect will also render any opiates useless for around 24 hours, so trying to take heroin to stop the withdrawals will have no effect!

Back in the 80s diamorphine (pharmaceutical heroin) was prescribed to a small amount of addicts (notably at the stapleford clinic) and up until the late 90's private doctors would still prescribe too.

These are classed as 'out patient' or community treatment options and are usually combined with regular counselling.

Rehab is probably the most successful way to treat heroin addicts at the moment, although many people would argue otherwise.

There are different types of rehab and they vary enormously in length of treatment and philosophy.

If your lucky enough to be able to afford private treatment you can go for a three month stay at a beautiful retreat type centre that offers alternative therapies along side detoxification and counselling.
For most people though rehab means being admitted to an NHS style, two week, quick detox.
They provide varying levels of aftercare with most offering post detox rehabilitation in a halfway house or similar. (If you can get funding)

Most centers, private or not adhere to the NA philosophy of 'finding and giving in to your higher power'
In my opinion this is where a lot of them fall down, I don't believe in god, and as much as NA says otherwise it is the christian version of god they want you to accept.
I was brought up catholic, in catholic schools and had it rammed down my throat most of my childhood, maybe this is why I have such a problem with it.
It also seems a bit cultish, especially as during a detox you are so vulnerable, it always felt like they were trying to convert me whilst I was down and open to anything that might take the pain away..

There is no magic bullet for opiate withdrawal unfortunately..

When you get to rehab you will be seen by the doctor and given a full medical examination, they will look at your drug use and if your on methadone will reduce your dose over a period of a few days usually, way too fast for such a long acting opiate, the half life that has built up over years of methadone abuse means it takes WEEKS to leave the body and even when it has long term addicts will most likely suffer post acute withdrawal symptoms (PAWS)

Some centers use drugs like clonidine/lofexidine a blood pressure medication that reduces physical withdrawal symptoms, it unfortunately also makes you feel like your walking around in a space suit!

The better places will offer benzodiazepines to help take the edge off and to help you sleep, most wont medicate anything that will make you feel better though and tend instead to try and treat the symptoms.

These include quinine for cramps and restless leg syndrome, anti-diorreah meds, deep heat for aching muscles, lavender oil to help sleep, paracetamol and that's about it.

Unfortunately the only thing that will ever really get you through a detox is willpower, and that's something that cant be forced.

Other treatments include places like detox 5, that basically put you to sleep for 5 days while they pump you with naltrexlone to push the opiates out (and it costs a bloody fortune for the pleasure).
In Thailand you can go and stay with monks that physically purge you, and of course there's always ibogaine...!

I'm slightly biased but after numerous different treatments the only thing that has ever worked for me, withdrawal wise is ibogaine.

You can always try it Trainspotting stylee!
If your lucky enough to be able to beg borrow or steal some comfort meds (IE benzo's) or if your more organized, some dihydrocodeine so you can taper down this is probably your best shot.
The most difficult bit is cutting contact with using mates and most difficult of all, deleting all your dealers numbers and changing your phone number!
Not many people succeed doing it this way, like the film you will more often than not end up ripping the planks off the door and running out to score!

Willpower dear Watson..

Ultimately changing behaviours and habits is key to recovery, replacing the day to day grind of grafting for money, scoring and using is the biggest challenge and takes a lot of work, this is where long term rehabilitation has it's benefits.

Here are some of the main rehabs in the UK:

These two I've had personal experience with;

Clouds House, is a six week residential detox and rehab centre, its in Salisbury and is where most people from the south of the UK will be sent, I went there three times altogether and never completed for one reason or another, they offer opiate detoxification with Clonidine and it's philosophy is based on the Narcotics Anonymous 'abstinence' model.

City Roads is based in London and specialises in 'crisis intervention'.
They will take you on short notice if your in urgent need of detoxification. Stays are usually two weeks and they will organise three to six month residential or 'halfway house' type when you leave.

I haven't been to these centers;

Narcanon is based in Lea-On-Sea, it has a good reputation but they don't use prescribed medication to aid withdrawal, alcoholics will receive IV vitamins and all patients benefit from alternative therapies.
I thought Narcanon was based on Narcotics Anonymous but after more research it's a front for the church of Scientology! (See below) Which begs the question why is it called Narcanon?

EDIT: After a comment posted on here informing me that Narcanon is a Scientology based rehab I am adding this info too....
I didn't realise this, and I'm pretty shocked actually.. if you know anything about Scientology, other than that Tom Cruise is a member, it's that they use somewhat questionable tactics to get people into they're 'programme'.. They have a habit of exploiting the most vulnerable members of society and indoctrinating them into what basically amounts to a cult.. the biggest cult in the world!
So they are basically using a rehab as a front to induct new members! That's shocking! And immoral..!
I leave is to you to make your mind up on this one, but it's not somewhere I'd want to go!
In fact, the more I think and write about this the more angry I'm getting....

Charis is a London based rehab facility that offer long term support by using supported housing units and dorms for people that have been through detox.
I know people that have been there and it is apparently very good, residents start off sharing dorms and by adhering to the programme of group therapy and counselling gradually work they're way up to sole occupancy flats. They specialise in long-term recovery and the waiting list is very long.

Hope House uses a 12-step integrated abstinence-based model using a holistic approach recognising emotional, physical, educational and recreational needs. The project is women-only with an all-female staff team. Second stage treatment facilitates the transition back into the community. Provides a safe space - community living and peer support. Life skills are gained through participation in the running of the house and in decision making about domestic and community matters, resettlement and housing advice. Attendance at self-help groups - AA, NA. Day and aftercare programmes are provided upon completion of the residential programme.

It is possible to be detoxified as in in-patient in an NHS hospital type setting but the waiting list is very long and they have a reputation of not being particularly good.

Friday, 17 December 2010

Some Of The Places My Addiction Has Taken Me

I first tried heroin when I was seventeen. I had a mini nervous breakdown and it was the only thing that got me out of the house without having a panic attack,..

I lost my house and ended up begging on the streets of London and Brighton, I remember a few times sitting in the pissing rain in a blanket with people walking past ignoring me and crying my eyes out...I used to will someone to just stop and ask if I was ok. I was barely eighteen and the whole experience made me very cynical and jaded to the world.

Unfortunately this has stuck with me, I used to be too trusting and empathic of other people and have been repeatedly fucked over.

After realising that begging wasn't a viable way of supporting a habit and not wanting to break my morals by mugging people or thieving I decided to become a sex worker.
Easier said than done when your a homeless junkie, but I had my age and looks on my side.
In Brighton I used to work with a friend doing 'duos' I'd make around £60-100 per session.

Having a history of sexual abuse, I had issues around sex as it was and selling my body was incredibly traumatic. I didn't mind so much working with my friend but I used to get so anxious before seeing a 'client' on my own!

When I moved to London I divided my grafting time between begging around Bank and working at Piccadilly Circus. 
Piccadilly used to be where the rent boys worked from but things have changed, nowadays most male escorts (they're not really called rent boys anymore) advertise online or in gay magazines which I just couldn't afford so Piccadilly was my only option.
I used to hang around on the corner opposite the Trocadero with my jeans slung low, cruising for punters.

I didn't have much luck. 

One client sticks out in my mind in particular, I had been hanging around for hours and was feeling the heroin draining from my body, the longer it went the more desperate and dope sick I was.

A guy approached me and started chatting, he was a real creep, we talked about everything except rent..! 
He kept telling me he had been inside, and asking bizarre questions about whether I got turned on when I went for a shit.
He told me when he was inside and had to share cells he used to get turned on when watching guys take a shit in the same cell..

After about an hour of this pointless drivel he invited me back to his, at this point we still hadn't talked business and I still wasn't 100% sure this is what he was looking for.
We got on the bus and sat for an hour or so travelling into the depths of south London, I lived East at the time and was consciously aware of how far away from home and my heroin I was.

When we finally got to his flat we went in and he locked the iron grill on the door behind us, my heart sank at this point and I started feeling genuinely scared.
There was a homeless looking man asleep on his sofa who he quickly got rid of, I was now sat in this guys untidy bedsit, alone with him.

Now he really started with the scat talk, 'do I get hard when I shit?' and 'have I ever shat on someone?' etc etc

We finally got into bed and I worked my magic, basically trying to make him climax as quickly as possible so I could get out of there, it turned out he did want me to shit on him, I wouldn't, until I realised I couldn't make him cum without it. 

I won't go into details....

It all took about an hour, I just wanted to get out of there, he payed me £20! That was all he had... that's why payment is discussed and taken beforehand but I was so desperate for the cash, and just wanted to escape at that point.

I can honestly say it was one of the most soul destroying, depressing things I've ever had to do, and it wasn't long after I cleaned up for the first time!

I've had a few experiences of being locked in peoples homes over the years, usually being assaulted whilst there.
It's left me emotionally scarred and untrusting of people.

No wonder I found solace in heroin!

Other stories include, living in car parks and sharing injecting equipment with other  homeless junkies, sleeping with your morning hit in your shoes in the bottom of your sleeping bag so on one steals it...
Banging up in crack houses and car park stairwells, running away when people have OD'd (not something Im proud of but I think other addicts can relate!).

I used to have to inject a friends' forehead as it's the only vein he had left, he used to stand with a belt round his neck straining till it popped out...

There's so many, I could go on, but it's not something im proud of like I say, it's not in the least glamorous once your addicted... there's nothing cool about injecting congealed blood, crying because you cant find a vein on your foot....

Thursday, 16 December 2010

About Bloody Time!

They're finally talking about prescribing diamorphine, and shooting galleries in the UK

Had them in Zurich for years, and they're new addict numbers have dropped by 85%!! .. Thats 85% Mr Cameron...!


Mind you they talk about legalising heroin for addicts every government change but nothing ever happens!


Then go sign the petition for diamorphine prescriptions to heroin addicts


Wednesday, 15 December 2010

One day at a time...

Cliche I know... sometimes it's minute by minute!

I haven't used for nearly a week though!

The hardest part, besides the constant PAWS, is filling the space left where the drugs used to be!
When your life has revolved around finding cash, scoring, using, every day for many years, when you stop your mind is still filled with using thoughts!

Heroin has a way of getting to you at every possible oppourtunity! Even when I get small bits of broken sleep I dream about it! Literally, scoring, cooking up and injecting, only to wake up and realise its just a dream! It's torture!

I have the added problem of having been an injector, I have a needle fixation, I part-time tattoo and body pierce and have always been into needles and anything medical.
When I was younger and more rebellious, piercing and tattooing myself was a constructive form of self harm for me.. when I was 16 I started to pierce myself and was covered within a few months!

I need more Ibogaine.. Iv'e been advised to take a small daily dose for as long as I need it to keep the cravings and PAWS away.. Iv'e orederd some and I should have it by the end of next week so it's just a waiting game now!

I need a distraction, im scared of exchanging one addiction for another. when I cleaned up a few years ago I developed a ketamine habit within 18 months..I was taking up to 4 grams a day by the end of it, I even went to rehab for it! Unfortunately theres not much you can do for a K head, in rehab they just dosed me up to the eyeballs with diazepam for the anxiety.. didn't work.

I ended up using heroin again, and stopped the K instantly...

Why is addiction so complex!? Why is there no magic bullet?!

Ibogaine is the nearest thing we have and I intend to use it as long as is takes to keep me safe.. my mother has actualy offered to buy me some for a christmas present!

Ibogaine Visions

This is what my parter looked like when I was in the 'visionary' stage of Ibogaine... It wasn't scary at all I have to add..

I didn't get the whole 'life playing back like a movie' thing.. unfortunately.

I was in the 1930s and we were being bombed.. I was on Brighton seafront in some smokers room thing...
Dont know what that means...
Second time I took an ibogaine flood I was under my covers in bed and the wind was howling, I was smuggling heroin along supply lines in Afghanistan..!

I must be weird...

Monday, 13 December 2010

Dealing With Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome PAWS

Unfortunately PAWS is a major cause of relapse after opiate detoxification.

Heroin and opiates attach themselves to various brain receptors, serotonin, dopamine, mu/kappa etc

They interrupt and replace the brains natural production of these hormones which provides the lovely, warm, happy feeling you can only get from opiates.

This is where the length of abuse comes into play, someone with a short term (less than a year) habit will hardly suffer at all, the brain will quite quickly recover and start naturally producing the hormones again, usually within six months. Whereas a heavy long term users brain can take years to recover!

PAWS is long term, low grade withdrawals, sneezing, sweating and chills, restless legs, goosebumps, stomach cramps and general anxiety.

Because opiate withdrawal is in my opinion quite largely psychosomatic these low grade withdrawals can quite easily in your head be turned into unbearable pain... and knowing that a tiny bit of heroin will not only take it all away but also give that lovely warm feeling is sometimes too much to deal with!

Some OTC remedies and medications that can help with PAWS and  acute withdrawal symptoms include...

Quinine - For cramps and RLS
Imodium - Cramps and diorreah
Paracetamol/acetaminophen - For keeping temperature regulated and aches and pains

Herbal supplements that can help (especially when recovering from ibogaine) are...

High Dose Vitamin C - 1000mg Plus Daily
Vitamin D
Vitamin B complex
Omega 3-6-9 Complex  

Fish oils help the body repair the synapses in the bran damaged by opiate abuse, zinc will also aid cell renewal


St John's Wort for depression, although be aware there are some contra-inications with SSRI's
And Rhodelia Rosea is really good for fatigue and lethargy post detox/ibogaine

Valerian can aid sleep (better than benzo's where possible)

When I was really struggling with 'kicky' and achey legs I would walk up and down the stairs in my flat..
I would take a bath whenever it got unbearable, this often meant 5-6 hot baths a day! Adding Epsom Salts helps too!
After that I'd rub deep heat all over my legs and use a hot water bottle...

If you have an understanding friend that will massage your legs its orgasmic :)
I had an acupressure treatment on my feet in rehab once and it was bloody fantastic!

It's really all about nursing your body back to health, eating well, meaning plenty of green vegetables, nuts, pulses, fruit, oily fish etc...

As I've mentioned before, a small daily dose of Ibogaine is great for PAWS and cravings.. start with 600mg (root bark) and work up if more is required, it's best to take it in the morning as it can cause insomnia.
If your using TA or HCL use titrate the dose up from 200mg and 100mg respectively.
A lot of people grind it down and mix it with a chocolate milkshake or something similar every morning.

Other than medication, post ibogaine therapies that have been shown to be beneficial include, talking therapies, acupuncture, exercise and sex (always good for an endorphin release after opiate WD, plus exercise will help with RLS and cramps)

If you are really worried about relapsing then a Naltrexone implant could be a good idea, although quite expensive and only available privately, Naltrexone is a full opiate antagonist, it completely blocks any opiates ingested rendering the drug useless..

As mentioned above, counselling has been shown to be an important part of recovery and most people that achieve long term abstinence employ some kind of talking therapy.

Saying all this though, the daily battle with your brain and body screaming out for heroin is one of the hardest things anyone can go through, and anyone that does has my full respect.

Ibogaine can definately help,  the liver converts it into noribogaine whichis stored in fat cells and slowly releases, this in most people, stave's off cravings for up to six months!
So my best advice for PAWS would be to micro-dose with Iboga rootbark.
The trick is to find how much you can take before you notice any psychoactive effects.
For me this is around the 1000mg a day mark.
Get some gel caps and weigh (with mini scales) 300mg Iboga rootbark into each of them.
You need to always take any Iboga in the mornings as its a stimulant in low doses.
Start with 300mg (1cap) one day and titrate up by one more cap daily, until you reach a level where you can feel any psychoactive effect. This is your limit.
Usually between 600-1500mg first thing in the morning is enough.

You want to take enough to relieve any withdrawal symptoms but not trip or notice any stimulating effect.
For the large majority of people, rootbark will relieve PAWS almost completely or entirely.
It really is the best thing for it.
Rootbark in low doses isnt dangerous and has some really beneficial effects.
You can buy it ready powdered or as actual bark.
I buy the 20 gram sachets from Iboga World and it costs around £75-80 usually.
This is enough for about a month though.

Ignore any rumours of it being addictive or habit forming. Trust me, Iboga is not something you would want to take daily if you didn't need to. Iboga wouldn't let you get addicted to it!

A lot of ex-ibogainers still use weekly or monthly top up (boosters) of rootbark.
A common and effective dosing regieme seems to be: a quarter teaspoon weekly and a half teaspoon monthly.
You can also put the powder into a smoothie of you prefer.

People have said things like 'I've heard of people becoming dependant on bark' or 'I don't want to swap one thing for another and still depend on taking something every day' ....
Well, as far as I'm concerned, I'd much rather take some Iboga when I need to than be dependant on heroin or methadone!

I think Iboga is safer and better al round than an opiate addiction! 

Saturday, 11 December 2010

One day at a time...

Cliche I know... sometimes it's minute by minute!

I haven't used for nearly a week though!

The hardest part, besides the constant PAWS, is filling the space left where the drugs used to be!
When your life has revolved around finding cash, scoring, using, every day for many years, when you stop your mind is still filled with using thoughts!

Heroin has a way of getting to you at every possible opportunity! Even when I get small bits of broken sleep I dream about it! Literally, scoring, cooking up and injecting, only to wake up and realise its just a dream! It's torture!

I have the added problem of having been an injector, I have a needle fixation, I part-time tattoo and body pierce and have always been into needles and anything medical.
When I was younger and more rebellious, piercing and tattooing myself was a constructive form of self harm for me.. when I was 16 I started to pierce myself and was covered within a few months!

I need more Ibogaine.. I've been advised to take a small daily dose for as long as I need it to keep the cravings and PAWS away.. I've ordered some and I should have it by the end of next week so it's just a waiting game now!

I need a distraction, I'm scared of exchanging one addiction for another. when I cleaned up a few years ago I developed a ketamine habit within 18 months..I was taking up to 4 grams a day by the end of it, I even went to rehab for it! Unfortunately there's not much you can do for a K head, in rehab they just dosed me up to the eyeballs with diazepam for the anxiety.. didn't work.

I ended up using heroin again, and stopped the K instantly...

Why is addiction so complex!? Why is there no magic bullet?!

Ibogaine is the nearest thing we have and I intend to use it as long as is takes to keep me safe.. my mother has actually offered to buy me some for a Christmas present!

Friday, 10 December 2010

If anyone in London wants a sitter...

I really struggled finding a UK provider, so I ended up doing it at home with my partner as a sitter...

Providing you pass the medical questions and obtain the Ibogaine yourself im happy to sit for you..

Im no expert but after having gone through it twice and researching it for years I know a fair bit about using it.

So.. apply within, or ask a question :)

Why staying clean is the hardest of all!

I wish people could empathise a little more with addicts... Honestly, I think at least 90% of addicts had some kind of trauma in childhood.. I know I did..!

I've always worked to support my habit, never robbed anyone.. in fact when I was homeless I used to beg and rent so I didn't have to commit any crimes.

Heroin obviously doesn't just get you physically but also psyhcologically too, when you first start taking it it's amazing, everyone that dabbles in it eventually slides into daily use gradually..

I first started using after moving to London at seventeen, after being sexually abused as a child, and then on a couple of occasions in my teens being raped again, I was running........ i lived on different road protesting sites as a teenager, Newbury bypass, Manchester airport etc..
After moving to London, and having no money, I had a nervous breakdown and was suffering panic attacks and anxiety. This is when I found Heroin.. wow, I could cope!

My every other week giro hit slowly turned into daily use and before I knew it was addicted.. Almost as soon as I started I was trying to clean up, I went to rehab within that first year at least twice.

The CBT element of heroin addiction is the reward system Heroin gives you. when your sick and spent hours trying to score when you actually get there is nothing quite like it!

Because I've used so long its more difficult to stop. The longer you take it the more your brain stops its dopamine production, relying on the Heroin to do that.

This is what causes depression, PAWS etc and in long term users can take years to go away,..

This along with daily cravings makes staying clean incredibly hard, knowing one hit will take the physical pain away is too much to bear!

I made a list of reasons to use and not to, it wasn't till after that I realised not one of the reasons for staying clean are about me! Its all.. for my partner, no veins left.. etc

What does that say about me?

I know I have a real persecution complex, and am the worst at sabotaging my own recovery, the amount of times I've come out of rehabs almost clean and gone home and scored.. it's almost as though I can't allow myself to be happy... I know I have to sort this out but every counsellor/consultant psych I've ever had has been unable to help me get to the root of it.

They always say, 'you seem to have a very god understanding of your destructive behaviours' or ' your very eloquent and obviously have good insight, you just need to work out how to change'

I've given up on mental health providers., no-one seems able to help me, I'm thirty now, I want a change...!

So i'll battle on, i'm ordering more Ibogaine Monday so I can take a small daily dose to keep the cravings away..

I'm also up for being someones sitter, if they were interested in doing the treatment... get in touch if you want some advice on Ibogaine detox..

Peace out

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

That little voice

In the back of your head.. never goes away...

Go on, a little bit wont hurt... you have no tolerance now.. a ten bag will have you nodding....

You can have one hit and not get hooked again, as long as you don't carry on.....

Im not sick, i'm not particularly craving, but fourteen years of the same behaviour day in day out takes it's toll..

Especially something like Heroin, the rewards process is so massively fulfilling... especially when your sick.. there's nothing quite like having a hit when you've been strung out for a good day...

So.. Ill struggle through it.. somehow.. maybe I should take my booster and lay in bed all day again...

Ibogaine... take two

So I took my second dose Sunday night, I waited til I was in full withdrawal before taking it as I only had such a small amount leftover..

Some background.. I ordered a full flood dose online about a month ago with the full intention of stopping using.
I really struggled with that detox, I was fine until about day three when the PAWS (Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome) hit me like a ton of bricks!
I'd drastically underestimated the amounts of methadone I was taking and in my naivety didn't predict that the horrendously long half-life of methadone meant that even only taking 30-40mls every few days as needed would mean it kicked back in after I had got the heroin out of me...!

I didn't have any ibogaine left, all I would have needed were a couple of small booster doses and I would have been fine..I tried desperately to find someone in the UK that could help to no avail
Eventually I managed to get a gram of TA extract but it took two weeks to arrive and I needed .. something.. Like NOW.

Post Ibogaine is said to be like recovering from a general anaesthetic  , low blood pressure, lethargy... insomnia.. the day after time goes so slowly.. it's pretty taxing on the body too..Food tastes really weird too.. it takes a whole to get your appetite back.

Anyway, while I waited for my parcel to arrive I gave in and scored, because of the drought in the UK at the moment, easier said than done,, It did mean though that my habit was down to like 0.1g a day, tiny.. and no methadone as opposed to 1/16th heroin IV a day plus methadone the first time... a pretty big habit by any ones standards..

In this time I also FOUND 400mg Ibogaine HCL that I'd forgotten I'd hid whilst on it the first time!
I could have cried! That easily would have got me through the PAWS.
It did mean that I could now add this to my TA so the amount I now had was very near the full 19mg/kg flood dose needed for opiate withdrawal..

So, Sunday night I went for it, it wasn't as intense as the first time and I didn't throw up this time either

I'm now 56 hours post treatment and feel fantastic.. I'm actually clean..

Which just leaves the big question... why oh why, isn't this drug being tested around the world!
It's amazing!

Monday, 29 November 2010

Link to online petition for fair treatment of heroin addicts


Go sign!

A couple of people have mentioned that they don't want to sign as don't want to give out they're full name.

You don't need to give a full name, it doesn't track your IP address or anything like that, I think you can even sign anonymously.

All you need is a first/second name and an email address... make a new email if your worried about it!

But please sign it!, Im gonna need thousands of signatures!

Also please feel free to copy and paste the link wherever you want!



Saturday, 27 November 2010

My open letter to the government for a reform of heroin addiction treatment!

This is really rough, im not that great with words, please help me put a better version together! I really think if enough of us send this off, local MP and lets find out the right health minister, could even send it to the PM haha

(Address Etc)

Dear (Insert MP’s name here),
                 I am writing with regards to the current treatment modality of heroin addiction in the UK.
After personally using heroin for 15 years and having utilising the various treatment options currently available believe I have a fair understanding of the issues surrounding opiate addiction and treatment.
In my experience, and invariably of many others, maintenance treatments like methadone and subutex, have their place, but for the majority of addicts just don’t work, one report suggests a success rate of just 4% with methadone!

There are numerous government reports supporting the prescribing of diamorphine for heroin addicts, and the studies and trials that have been done all have much better results regarding health problems and a marked reduction in crimes committed to support habits.

The UK is also in a better position legally than most other countries as doctors here are allowed to prescribe diamorphine for addiction (alebeit with a home office license) this should be exploited as there are hundreds of thousands of heroin addicts in the UK that can see no way out of their situation.

After a recent heroin ‘drought’ in the UK, a lot of addicts are questioning the range of treatments available to us.
Not only is the situation regarding getting into a treatment programme different all over the country, the choices on offer (methadone or subutex maintenance are not suitable for everyone)
For example, some GP’s will prescribe on the same day, but in other areas users will have to join a drug dependency unit and be co-prescribed with a GP, this on average can take six to eight weeks which is just too long, typically when an addict asks for help, they are at ‘rock bottom’ and need it immediately.
In our class culture, if a user can afford it, a lot of private doctors will prescribe morphine, diamorphine or benzodiazepines with no questions asked. How is this fair to the average addict?

I feel (along with many others) we are made to jump through so many hoops it almost isn’t worthwhile. Even if we do what is asked of us we are only going to get a drug which is more addictive than heroin, has more side effects, is a lot harder to detox from and in most cases doesn’t even alleviate 100% withdrawal symptoms and cravings!
I believe it is time the government looks at other options. Methadone and subutex do not work for the majority of addicts. There are plenty of other options out there and we need to stop looking at addiction with a ‘one size fits all’ attitude.
Addiction is obviously a very complex, difficult issue to treat, many of us have deep psychological issues, whether it be from childhood abuse, or pre-existing depression that we discovered was manageable through opiates.
It is proven that opiates alleviate depression. It’s time we were treated with dignity and respect, like any ‘normal’ patient would get.
Currently, your average heroin user is forced to buy on the streets from unscrupulous criminal gangs that will, as standard ‘cut’ heroin with all kinds of adulterants, putting users at risk from poisoning.

Not only would being treated properly with appropriate medication put a stop to health problems associated with injecting/smoking adulterated heroin, there would be a marked drop in drug related crime, prostitution, gang affiliated violence and profiteering.
I believe we need to re-asses the way we currently treat addicts, if users want to use methadone it should be made easier and faster to access, injectable ampoules should be made available to those who want it as needle fixation is a big part of many addicts’ problem.
Injectable diamorphine should be the standards treatment for addicts that inject and for smokers, in tablet form.
A clean supply of these drugs would massively reduce the problems classically associated with heroin addiction.
It would also mean users would be able to lead a relatively ‘normal’ life, get back into employment and attain some level of dignity as the daily routine of getting money, buying drugs would no longer be an issue!
I realise this is a highly controversial issue and will not change overnight but I believe we need to move out of the stone age when it comes to the treatment of addiction

Yours Sincerely

(Name/Or I guess it could be anonymous?)