Crack vs Meth

The Differences and Similarities of Deadly Stimulant Drugs

I grew up in an environment that was full of drug abuse. From the time I can remember, my parents were always strung out on illicit drugs. For them, the ‘crack vs meth’ debate was more like planning their day. This led me to experiment with drugs at a very young age, and by the time I was a teenager, I was hopelessly addicted.

Finding addiction treatment as a teenager is very difficult, made even more difficult by the fact that I did not have a good support system. When I finally got help in my adult years, I used Find Addiction Rehabs as a tool to find the rehab that was right for me. Not only did I need a lot of drug counseling, but I also needed mental health counseling to address my years as an at-risk youth.

As you may have gathered already, the drugs of choice in my home were crack cocaine and methamphetamine. My mother was addicted to crack, while my father struggled with meth addiction. Though they are both stimulants, there are some differences between crack vs meth. Regardless of those differences, they both contain toxic and dangerous chemicals.

It’s hard to not feel somewhat resentful after all these years, but I am working on those feelings through my recovery. Keep reading to learn more about crack vs meth, and what I’ve learned from my own experiences!

When Drug Abuse Runs in The Family

When Drug Abuse Runs in The Family

My mother began abusing powder cocaine in her early years, which led to a full-blown cocaine addiction around the time she was pregnant with me. I was born addicted to cocaine, and still suffer certain consequences because of that.

Substance abuse was a part of my life from the time I can remember. I didn’t have a lot of supervision growing up, because my parents were always preoccupied with their addictions. Seeing a meth addiction and rampant cocaine use on a regular basis made me think that was normal. It was hard for me to judge between crack vs. meth which was worse.

The Generational Trauma of Addiction

The substance use disorder that existed in my family went back several generations. There weren’t many people in my family who were able to break the cycle, and the ones that did were not around when I was growing up. I did not have any positive adult influence to look up to.

Both of my parents were heavily addicted, but my father’s addiction was the one that scared me the most. Crystal meth users suffer from extreme paranoia and often don’t sleep for multiple days. My mother would go on binges with the ‘fruit’ of the coca plant too, but the binge and crash pattern I witnessed from my father was much more terrifying.

At one point, the police were called to the house because he was convinced my mother was trying to secretly poison him. I watched him yell and scream as he was being led away in cuffs. He truly believed she was trying to kill him, even though it was something he completely made up in his mind.

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The Physical Effects Of Illicit Drugs

My father’s meth use left his body ravaged and broken. Methamphetamine use does a tremendous amount of damage that one doesn’t notice while they are addicted. I remember how much my father would grind his jaws and teeth. Meth users often grind their teeth until they suffer from cracked and broken teeth, as well as tooth decay.

My father’s meth mouth was only one obvious sign of his substance use. He also suffered from skin sores as a result of constantly scratching and picking at his skin. He also lost a tremendous amount of weight as a result of his poor diet. He would go days without eating. There were times I thought he would fall over and die right in front of me.

Crack vs Meth: The Consequences of Use

My mother’s crack cocaine addiction was less noticeable compared to my father’s, but it was still horrible to witness. She was smoking crack all day long and when she didn’t have it, she was prone to outbursts where things would get thrown and holes would be punched in walls.

I remember her pushing me into a corner when I had hidden the baking soda one time, and being legitimately afraid for my life until I gave it back so she and her ‘friends’ could cook some more crack.

In case you are not familiar, many cocaine users prefer crack cocaine over the powder form of cocaine because of the quicker, more intense high. Crack cocaine is created by cooking powder cocaine and baking soda together. This forms a solid substance that can be smoked.

Crack and Meth Addiction in The Same Household

Crack and Meth Addiction in The Same Household

Being subjected to crack and meth at such a young age had a profound effect on my development. When I began using drugs as a teenager, it began with alcohol and marijuana. Because I was so used to crack and meth being around me, I ended up trying them both in high school.

I must take after my father because I found meth to be much more enjoyable than crack. I used a lot of different substances before I found the ones that I preferred. I tried over-the-counter decongestants, Wellbutrin, (also known as poor man’s cocaine) and Adderall.

Growing Up with Highly Addictive Stimulants Around

Trying all these different drugs wasn’t abnormal for me, because it was all I knew growing up. My peers in school were shocked to discover I had tried so many different substances. Not only did it disrupt my brain function, but it led to many risky behaviors as well. I got in trouble a lot as a kid and never feared the consequences.

I was playing a dangerous game with my central nervous system, as well as my future. I wasted my younger years trying to get high and getting in trouble constantly. It was all fun and games at first, but it went downhill very quickly. I dropped out of high school in tenth grade and engaged in a life of crime and substance use that persisted into my twenties.

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Withdrawal Symptoms of Crystal Meth Use and Cocaine

The withdrawal symptoms of crack vs meth are pretty much the same, though there are some little differences. When I was at the height of my meth addiction, my withdrawal symptoms would be brutal and overpowering. If I didn’t have the drug, I would suffer from fatigue, anxiety, chills, insomnia, psychosis, hallucinations and intense cravings.

Going through a withdrawal is like being sick times a thousand. I can’t describe it any other way. There is no way to function once you are that addicted and don’t have the drugs you need on hand. An addictive stimulant like meth or cocaine will drain your brain’s dopamine and leave you an empty shell of yourself.

The Psychological Agony of Stimulant Withdrawals

When my mother would go through her cocaine withdrawals, she would often become very depressed and restless. Both of them engaged in aggressive behavior when they were going through withdrawal, but come to think of it, this aggression seemed to always be there no matter what was going on.

Other symptoms of cocaine withdrawal include rapid heartbeat, increased body temperature, and cardiac arrest. There were times when my mother told us she was having heart attacks, only to take another hit of crack seconds later. Again, this became normal for me, and nothing that I questioned until I finally decided to get help years later.

Addiction Treatment Following Decades of Drug Abuse

Addiction Treatment Following Decades of Drug Abuse

When you grow up around toxic and dangerous chemicals, and then begin using them yourself, finding treatment seems impossible. You have to relearn how to live your life. I never experienced any kind of safety or comfort in my early years. I was comfortable being around hazardous chemicals and had an overall sense of dysfunction.

When I finally decided to get clean, it was going to take every ounce of energy in me to make it work. When I started looking through treatment programs, I was surprised to find so many options via Find Addiction Rehabs. I was able to find a recovery center that would address my past trauma as well as my years of drug abuse.

The Importance of Therapy When Walking the Road of Recovery

Therapy is a big part of it. Being able to connect with other addicts in group meetings helps me keep myself in check. I also engage in individual counseling, which has helped me manage my emotions and deal with all of my negative thought patterns.

Both forms of therapy were very important in order for me to make it through to the other side and continue to be a part of my support system when I have rough days (or weeks).

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Get Help Now to Overcome Stimulant Abuse

Getting treatment and living a sober lifestyle has also helped me to forgive my parents for the way I was brought up. I held onto anger and resentment for years, but I realize now that they were sick, and weren’t trying to raise me to be an addict.

Crack and meth may have ruined my childhood, but with a lot of work and the help of Find Addiction Rehabs, the experience has helped shape my adult life for the better.

If any of this sounds familiar in your life, or the life of someone you care about, reach out now for a confidential consultation with their recovery team, and get options for help today!

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