People in the walls

 I am a 25-year-old Australian. I have used meth since 19. Only ever shot it up, no normal pattern of snort, smoke then shoot, but from my experiences here in Melbourne, shooting up is the only way to use.

First the sex was great, then it became mechanical. Wasn't too long before a cock just wasn't enough, and of course hard-ons didn't happen so toys and fists followed. By 21, it was nothing to have five, six guys fist me in one night, but the binges would go on for days. I lost all touch with people my own age; just a constant stream of 30/40-something guys who could provide the drug and the sex.

As esteem fell, more and more depraved acts became the norm (I daren't put down in words some of the things I have done whilst high), but that was nothing compared to the paranoia. First, it was a nagging sensation that someone was looking on. I thought friends were out to get me, so I cut them all off. I used to love going out partying, but I stayed locked in at home. Then the walls began talking; I became convinced there were cameras hidden in the stereo, the fridge, the bed, all of which I dismantled. When I had men over, I thought that assassins were about to charge the apartment so I often barricaded the door and held them captive with a claw-hammer. Once, when friends were over, so sure was I that they were in on the conspiracy, I took a needle of my HIV+ blood and held it to them in an effort to extract "the truth".

My apartment was in a high-rise, over 15 storeys up. One night the "people" in the walls were criticising/goading me so much, I climbed onto the window ledge (a single row of brick-ends, less than six inches of space). Plunging knives into the walls to get the people inside was commonplace, as was sleeping with a carving knife. I kept taking crystal more and more, because those couple of hours after shooting up were the only times that I forgot about the conspiracy, the assassins and the laughter.

I haven't touched crystal now for six months. I've left Melbourne behind. I'm on anti-depressants, anti-psychotics and HIV medication. I still can't go outside or talk on the phone to anyone. I'm now alone in the world. My cat is my company, but at times I have even wondered if her eyes are cameras. Thank God I'm not on meth now - who knows what I'd have done to her...

From time to time I wonder about the cameras and still hear voices in the roof. I still don't know if "they" are real and waiting for another excuse to laugh at me. If they are real, they will recognise my story and ridicule me more. That's the really hard part; not knowing if what you are experiencing is real or not. Professionals have diagnosed paranoid schizophrenia, but although a doctor can say what you are experiencing isn't real, to me it is as real as any object I can reach out and touch.

I'm HIV+, have had every sexual disease going, slept with over 1500 men, shared needles, debased myself in unspeakable ways, slashed my arms apart with a razor, hurt and isolated everyone I love and now can't face the world. Safe to say, I don't like myself very much.

LIFE OR METH is so important. Crystal really is a one-way ticket to hell. I hope you make a difference...

'James', Sydney

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Postscript: Things have got a lot better since I wrote to LIFE OR METH a few years back. I got off the crystal, got a great job, relocated, got an even better job, lost all the paranoia, lost all the fear, and  pretty much came out the other side. So... thanks for being a big step in helping me to help myself do that. 

I just re-read my words from back then [above] and I am sitting here in tears at all I lost. It is so cool you are still here for, it seems, once an addict always an addict. The desire never goes away. Since being in the UK I have relapsed a couple times - but only a couple.

Revisiting this site is kinda wierd.  I forget (have blocked out) how bad things got for me - my life from 23 to 28 is pretty much erased, or too painful to remember. Let's just say that after reading my story and the rest of your site, the desire to revisit Tina will not be there!

I just wanted to let you know that you do help people, you do change lives, and that someone mentioned on your site - me! - has managed to pretty much come out the other side of the nightmare. Thank God I am not where I was before, people in walls et al!

Thanks for helping me to stop the cycle (again) before it got as bad as it was - or even worse.  If you do outreach, talks, putting up posters in pubs, whatever, I would love to be able to give something back for the help you gave me, and the chance to help others.