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Drug
User : Tony Collins
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Nik

Do you regret all this taking of drugs at all?

Tony

Absolutely not. No, I had a fantastic time. There were times when as
I said it started to become ‘abuse’ and not ‘use’ when it would have
been nicer to stay at home but looking back on my late teenage years
and early to mid twenties I had a fantastic time that I would not swap
for anything. If somehow I was sent back to the age of 18 I would do
again exactly what I have done. I loved it. Absolutely loved it.

The
only… Where I have regrets are that certain aspects of my life have
changed for the worse. When you take drugs of any sort you get a high
of sorts. With ecstasy it’s a sort of very spiritual high where you
might not know what you are doing very much. With speed it’s a physical
high where you get a mass of energy but you are getting highs that you
can’t experience in everyday life under everyday circumstances and when
you induce these artificial highs, the other highs in everyday life
really pale very badly. A normal night out is absolutely nothing compared
to a night out taking drugs. Therefore now, even that I don’t want to
take drugs, a night out to me seems so much more boring than it would
to someone who has never taken drugs. If you take aside the potential
risk to health, that’s the biggest downside to taking drugs – that it
can totally drain your life if colour.

I,
well most people would perhaps like to go out to the pictures on a Friday
night and then go out for a drink afterwards. I would, even though I
don’t particularly want to take drugs, I would feel this real need to
go out until three or four o’clock, for which I would take drugs, but
I won’t do that. Therefore I feel bored a lot of the time and everyone
I have spoken to who has taken drugs over a long period, if they have
abused drugs that’s because that’s the only way they can get their high
now. The only other comparable high now is falling in love and that’s
not something you can do every weekend.

Nik

So do you see yourself taking drugs again?

Tony

I’m not going to say I won’t. I like drugs. The biggest problem that
people campaigning against drugs have is that they try and convince
people that drugs are all bad. They’re not. You can have a fantastic
time on ecstasy, on speed, on acid if you can handle it. You can have
a brilliant time. Of course that doesn’t take away the fact that you
can feel absolutely terrible afterwards and as I have said I can feel
far more bored than other people would so if I want to have a fantastic
time in a club then that would involve taking drugs. I have no problem
with that.

Nik

What about at this particular point in your life?

Tony

No. I just don’t want to do it. I’m glad I don’t want to do it because
even though I would go back and do it all again I feel in a sense that
it would be better if those drugs had never been around. I wouldn’t
have had those highs but I wouldn’t have had so much boredom in my life
now and all the people around me who have that boredom, we would perhaps
have more enjoyment out of going out for a drink than we do.

Nik

Since coming off the drugs have you found you have lost contact with
a lot of people who were very good friends simply because of the fact
that you were all on drugs?

Tony

Yeah, it’s one of the problems with drugs. They alter your perception
in more ways than one. Obviously there is the mind altering aspect of
taking drugs, but you meet the most fantastic people and have an incredibly
good time with them and some of the clubs I went to were just so full
of love. If you sat down alone people would come and they would put
their arms around you but it wouldn’t be because they were trying to
cop off with you – it would just be because they wanted to talk to you
and spend time with you.

I
started going to one particular club with two other people but in the
end we would go and meet up with groups of thirty to forty people and
we all stayed in touch a lot, we saw each other all the time. All we
ever did was talk about going out to clubs and taking drugs as part
of going out to clubs, and the good times we had and the good times
we were expecting to have.

Pretty
much as soon as I stopped taking drugs the phone calls stopped. People
want to go out and take drugs because as I say that’s where they get
their kicks from. They don’t want to come round your house on a Friday
night and watch a video and then perhaps go out and get a take away.
Even though that’s not my idea of how to spend a great Friday night
it should be a good way to spend a Friday night. No-one wants to do
that. If those people weren’t your friends before you can be pretty
damned sure that if you cut out the drugs they won’t be your friend
afterwards no matter how good a time you think you’re going to have
with them.

That
has made me feel very lonely because I spend more time on my own now
because the people I would like to see on a Friday night – they want
to go out and take drugs and I don’t. But in a sense, I’m glad because
obviously just like any other part of your life, if you’ve got friends
in your life who only want you for one thing they’re not friends. Unfortunately
that’s exacerbated by drugs because everyone is an amazing person when
you’re on ecstasy.

Nik

And do you resent the people or the drugs for this?

Tony

I don’t resent anything. It’s just the way the situation is. People
are very transient these days. People seem to have been taught to live
for the moment and I’m very much for that except that people who live
for the drugs scene seem to be very shallow because they get a high
from taking drugs so they tend not to look elsewhere for any kind of
meaning, which is fine. I don’t have a problem with that, but if people
aren’t like that – if people just take drugs and they just want to go
out and have a good time on their drugs I can’t blame them for that.
We don’t exactly live in a world that’s full of pleasure and fun. I’m
not going to blame the drugs – they’re not living substances: they’re
just things that people take to enhance something that they have in
their mind already. I’m not going to blame the people because they’re
just doing the things they want to do. You could blame society, you
could blame the world, but it’s just the way the it is. Don’t have any
resentment for anyone for it.

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