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The Experimental Stage: The First Step on a Dark Path

I took a number of chemistry courses in college. Class often consisted of experiments and demonstrations to visually explain what we were learning. These experiments were well calculated, and almost always, we knew what would happen.

When people first experiment with drugs, the process is similar. Usually, the individual careful measures how much he takes to avoid an overdose, and expects a certain outcome from the substance.

But something is often overlooked. People tend to disregard, or at least underestimate the horrors of addiction.

Don’t experiment with addiction

Like any idea or choice that we make, addiction starts in the mind. You'll never start drinking or using drugs unless you think about it and then chose to try it.

Usually, someone begins taking drugs because of an emotional experience. Whether it's losing a job, going through a divorce or trying to cope with the death of a loved one, people often take drugs to escape the reality of a difficult situation.

Other reasons for an experiment with drugs include: curiosity, influence from friends or simply out of interest or pleasure. Whatever the reason may be, during the experimental stage, drugs are usually taken short-term and randomly.

Don't play with fire . . . or drugs

A good definition of the experimental stage would be “the voluntary use of drugs without experiencing any negative social or legal consequences.”[ref]http://casapalmera.com/the-four-stages-of-drug-addiction/[/ref] But even in using drugs or alcohol as a short-term source for enjoyment, you're playing with fire.

The problem usually ensues once the fire is kindled. When the user discovers the temporary relief in their substance of choice, they begin to crave that feeling of relief again.

But our emotions will never be satisfied by using a substance. So I have to ask, why? Why risk your life by experimenting with drugs or alcohol? It isn't worth it. I promise.

But those who choose to take the risk take the plunge into the next stage of addition: The Social Stage.