Here are the numbers. After my scholarship class, I’m thinking about what stats like this mean. It’s easy to think of drug addicts as people lay in gutters or are otherwise identifiable. That’s never been true, and the opioid crisis is showing us it is regular people everywhere, even people who don’t “believe” in using drugs and are functioning, like Prince. Given things I’ve seen and heard in my life recently, it would not surprise me if these percentages translated directly to my workplace and extended family. In other words, there is about a 1 in 10 chance when I ask for someone for something, whether it’s an order of fries or to setup a persistent drive letter for one of our computer users, the person I’m asking is stoned. At best they would test positive from recent use and are impaired.
I lived that way for a solid 5 years and few more years of intermittent use on either side of that. I had a huge safety net, so I didn’t ruin my own life, but who knows what damage I did or what I could I have done. No regrets, just saying I’m not blaming the world, I completely get it.
Life has a lot of rough edges and people do what they can to deal with the pain, self medication has a very long history.
Now it’s to the point of taking one dose of heroin loaded with just a bit too much fentanyl will kill you. Other drugs are measured in milligram dosages, fentanyl is so powerful that it is prescribed in micrograms. An illicit drug dealer can cut in just a tiny bit too much fentanyl and it will kill anyone who uses it.
If one picture could explain why people are overdosing on "the tiniest bit" of fentanyl, it might be this filthy kitchen in Burnaby, B.C. Fentanyl is a drug that's 100 times more potent than heroin, and a dose the size of a grain of sand can kill. When it's prescribed by a doctor, it's measured by the millionth of a gram. But the fentanyl sold on the streets is cut in places like this clandestine drug lab, busted by police last May.