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Why do the Youth do Heroin?

Brian McCollom Addiction candy ethnography getting high heroin kill mental health National Geographic problem streets Substance Abuse Teens The Fix Why world youth

Why do the youth do heroin? There are many reasons someone could do heroin, but there is only one reason the youth in this world do it! Why do the youth do heroin? We will give you some insight and let you decide!

We’ve decided to not go with guessing/assuming on this one! We all know what that does to you and I. So, we have compromised a list of credible [scientific/academic/peer reviewed] sources that have something to say on the subject. At the end, we have left it up to you and your friends to decide!

In chapter 7 of Marni Finkelstein’s 2005 ethnography of youth on the streets, there is a chapter completely devoted to the youth and their “introduction” to heroin.

Titled, “Initiation to Heroin Use” this section, of chapter 7, only needs one and a half pages to nail it!

Finkelstein quotes that the role of others in the initiation of heroin use/abuse is “crucial.”

We can only draw but one conclusion to this statement!  Peer pressure versus pure curiosity? It doesn’t go unnoticed that Finkelstein goes on stating that only 4% of the sample studied were alone when trying heroin the first time.

It’s safe to say that friends really do matter in this decision! Parents take heed; be warned.

Another logical conclusion we could take is the price of a “stamp.” The price of 0.1 gram of heroin can run as low as five dollars, but usually nowhere higher than fifteen dollars. youth youth Why do the Youth do Heroin? heroin user

One stamp could last a teenager considerable time in comparison to buying, filtering, and consuming pills. Not to mention the immediate high heroin injection can give you.

It’s logical to conclude “price” as an object for youth’s heroin addiction that are already addicted to substances, isn’t it?  Heroin is considerably cheaper, quicker, stronger!

In an excerpt from “The Fix” writer Tony O’Neill he notes “when they’re broke and withdrawing, risking that shady five-dollar bag of dope suddenly seems a whole lot more appealing to the novice user.”

O’Neill’s findings are more than accurate into the heroin initiation saga that takes place among adolescence and youth.

Then there’s this: according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services administration [SAMHSA], initiations to heroin have increased 80 percent among 12- to 17-year-olds since 2002. More troublingly, young people are dying in greater numbers, too. In 1999, the number of fatal overdoses in young people between 15 and 24 was 198. Ten years later, it had risen to 510.”

[Tony O’Neill.  The Truth About Teens and Heroin.  The Fix.  8/29/2010]

Another trial and tribulation is the placement of the heroin chic in today’s society. The phenomenon of the heroin chic is best portrayed at muirwoodteen.com/teen-heroin-abuse/ in a single excerpt:

National Geographic reports that heroin use rates among adolescents jumped 80 percent between 1999 and 2009. It’s possible that the physical changes heroin can bring about might make it an attractive drug for some users to try.”

The phenomenon of the heroin chic is best known as a way of making heroin a new, attractive “thing,” to appeal to it’s audience: YOUTH.

It’s all about the glamour and flare. The media’s portrayal doesn’t help the situation.

As one of Heath Ledger’s last films before tragically dying from an accidental overdose was, “Candy.” This 2006 film not only portrays the attractiveness of heroin abuse at its well… “Best?” but at it’s complete and utter worst!

The title is a play on words to its best, too.

Courtesy of Shutterstock

Candy is the name of Abbie Cornish in the film. She plays Heath’s lover, as they are head over heals in love with each other.  They both try and promise not to “over-indulge” (if there was ever a concept like that with heroin?) in the heroin in the film, as this was another type of “candy.”

As the movie goes on (you’ve probably guessed), as the heroin abuse gets more attractive so does Candy (Abbie Cornish). But, as the heroin abuse gets lack-luster, and starts spiraling out of control, then does their relationship and does Candy.

The image of the heroin chic is portrayed at so many levels in Candy (2006) that I would be beating a dead horse to keep repeating myself!

The more appealing something looks the better the curiosity will kill the cat.  You could say, although this brings about plenty of curiosity on all parts (not just the teens?) who and where do we point fingers?

So, say it while it’s on the tip of your tongue. Do they do it to just get high? Do they do it to feel numb? Some would argue yes. Where does your argument lie?

        WHY DO THE YOUTH GET HIGH ON HEROIN?



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