My addiction became problematic in 1995, but I wasn’t ready for rehab. I suffered from depression but I didn’t relate it to my drug use.
My drugs of choice were stimulant drugs: amphetamines and cocaine. I had been employed since I left school in Glasgow, at the age of 16, and had a great job in the financial services industry.
However my recreational drug use became very problematic. Initially I would only take drugs every other weekend and would scoff at people: Why would they take drugs midweek? Why would they take drugs and then go to work? But then I became that person and I was taking amphetamines just to feel normal.
I believed I was functioning normally but then I started being late for work and getting irritated with the guys I was working with. In 1995 I walked out of my job. My family became very concerned about me: why was I doing this? But they didn’t know what was going on, and neither did my colleagues.
I became depressed for a few months, not getting out of bed and not taking care of myself at all. My family got involved and the doctor came to visit me at home. I was then referred to a psychiatric ward and I remained there for five and a half months — for depression. But I was dishonest and I didn’t mention my drug use.
Over 6 Years to Get Ready for Rehab
Castle Craig was mentioned by my consultant in 1995 but I wasn’t ready, I really didn’t think I had a problem with drugs. I didn’t consider myself an addict and the idea of rehab just went over the top of my head. Unfortunately I went back to using drugs for another 6 years.
I started to take drugs daily and for the next 6 years it got worse. Even though my behaviour and attitude was out of control — I was doing things I would never normally have got involved in and I often ended up in hospital — I still didn’t feel I was ready for rehab.
I was involved in an unhealthy relationship — my partner also took drugs — and the norm for me was to get up in the morning, take drugs, dress nicely and go out like everyone else. I didn’t believe I needed help. I was living on benefits at the time.
The depression then kicked in again, probably due to the overload of drugs. I was given a psychiatrist who I saw weekly as an outpatient and he said I needed treatment. My other family members were getting involved by then. I was seven and a half stone (48kg) and psychologically very damaged, although I didn’t realise it at the time.
I was a wreck by this point and my GP got involved. I was shaking, trembling and I wouldn’t come out of the house; I was becoming a recluse. The amphetamine-type drugs had given me a lot of energy at the beginning but by the end I had no energy at all. I was literally crawling to bed at one point.
That was when I realised I needed some help. My GP sent me to a psychiatrist who sent me to Castle Craig. I believe at that time I was ready for treatment. It had taken almost 7 years for me to admit that I had a problem.
“I Was Not Like These People”
I was admitted to Castle Craig on Wednesday the 31st of January 2001. It wasn’t an easy ride. The only person who knew I was coming in was my brother. I was pretty ashamed but still not realising that I was an addict.
When I came into treatment I felt different. I felt I was not like these people and I went to the staff room and said: “Excuse me, I really don’t need to be here. These people need more help than I do.” I was still delusional. The staff were very gentle with me and said “we’ll talk about that.”
For two or three days I was crying and feeling overwhelmed. It was scary. I never thought I would get one day free of drugs. There was an inkling that I wanted to but I didn’t know how to do it. I had no detox because it’s not needed for my type of drug, and it took me about three weeks to “land” in Castle Craig. I had a lot of damage, nightmares and negative thinking.
Gradually I realised that I was just like the other people in treatment and I spent over four months there. I was fearful. I didn’t think I could have a life without drugs, without having a chemical in my body. This is what my addiction was telling me. I learned a lot about myself and today I can say I am an addict and am in recovery.
If you or someone you know is experiencing what Roseanne describes above, contact us to get help. We have a therapist call-back service, where you can speak to someone and request support for admission to Castle Craig.