West Coast Perspective

This interview between OD expands on our dialogue by getting the perspective of a 25 year old Los Angeles native who has dealt with addiction in his family.  If someone you know might benefit from our discussion please share.  Here is his point of view…

What are your thoughts on addiction?

I think it’s a disease. I think a lot of addicts want to stop and have tried to but can’t help it. I don’t think anyone likes being dependent on anything. In fact therein lies one of the worst aspects to struggling with an addiction. Losing your independence, losing that natural feeling of wellness.

Have you had any personal experiences with it?

Yes. I had an uncle that did crack and I just remember when he wouldn’t have it he’d be really angry.  Like mad for no reason, and if it wasn’t him starting a fight with someone in my family it was him in bed crying, depressed.  I didn’t know why till later on when my family told me about it. It was like watching someone who had no control over their emotions.

How do you feel about the social stigma surrounding addicts and addiction?

It’s bad. Especially here in L.A where you can see them in the street people think they doing it for fun and shit like they think they can just stop and shit you know?!?

How do you think as a society we can combat this?

I honestly don’t know.  Seriously, I think by doing the corniest things like actually supporting them, talking, and socializing more with those suffering like if they were family. Lots of addicts don’t get that support, their families have given up on them or they just don’t go to see them because they’re ashamed. I feel like If we had a loving environment with people that want to help and not just get a check for working with them they’d recover must faster. Maybe?

Would you support the idea of Open Discussion Apparel?

Yes, I would definitely support that. The idea is helping to bring light to the suffering by collaborating with addicts to design clothing, raise awareness, and provide education. I think the idea of targeting the population with education by making the focus come from an apparel line is genius.

Have you personally done drugs?

Yes. I have done drugs before. I can honestly say that I did it just to fit in. I was always more involved in my Vegan lifestyle, as well as fitness. Competition and outdoor actives usually took precedence to partying. It is hard keeping your center though in a big place like LA.

Have you had any friends die from overdoses?

No, no friends just my uncle that I talked about. But I have lots of friends of friends who have lost people they know, at very young ages.

Do you think people use and abuse substances just for fun?

Nah, I mean look if you go to a party and everyone’s doing coke, smoking, or drinking sure they’re laughing and smiling.   Yeah for someone that isn’t around that shit often it looks like they’re doing it for fun but if you’re around those same people when they aren’t high you’d see the truth, they’re just tryna escape.


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