Friend confessed drug addiction?

by J.


A close friend of mine called me last night and confessed his drug addiction. About a year ago he started smoking tobacco out of homemade bongs. He had originally started with marijuana, but eventually split it with marijuana and tobacco, and then just tobacco.

When he began smoking the tobacco out of these “apple bongs”, potato bongs, or soda can bongs, I guess he would get this large head-rush of nicotine and smoke, which would ultimately knock him unconscious sometimes.

He says his mom found him unconscious a couple times and talked with him about it, but I was one of the first people he told that he has an addiction to this brief euphoric high that was ultimately killing him.

He says he feels so guilty about it now and wants to stop. All his friends at his college are quitting smoking to help him, but I’m worried about when he goes home over the summer, where his mom smokes cigarettes and they’re readily available and he’ll be home alone a lot of the time (granted we still have some time till the summer, but still).

So in all, my questions are,

1. What information do you have on this sort of nicotine rush like this, because neither of us can find any information online, and

2. What can I do to help him besides offer him my full support of kicking this addiction?

Thank you very much.


by: Richard

Wow, I never heard of this and have been in recovery for 22 years. When someone is really addicted the addict has to want to recover.

He might try this–

Support Needed

by: Ned Wicker

Dear J,

A friend of mine has an old photo taken at the Tour de France many decades ago, which shows several riders taking a cigarette break. You wouldn’t necessarily associate cycling with cigarettes, but nicotine is a stimulant and so riders would smoke to get a little “boost” before the competition, or even during the race itself.

Baseball players used chewing tobacco, and still do, for the same reason. Now take that little boost to an extreme and that’s what your friend is experiencing.

He runs the risk of cardiac failure, respiratory distress, and worst yet, brain damage from the overwhelming jolt he is taking. “Huffing” is a problem among young people, who like to sniff glue and other household chemicals for a short-lived rush. Your friends bad behavior is sort of like that.

Nicotine addiction is very common, and very difficult to overcome, but your friend has got something else going on in his life that he believes requires his escape to the tobacco bong. He says he wants to stop, but is he willing to take steps to help himself stop?

My question to you, as his friend, is “What hurts?” You can encourage him to go to meetings and talk with other addicts. You can be around him to help him avoid doing his Russian roulette game with his brains. The support group to stop smoking is a good idea.

To know and understand his thinking, you may want to consider going to Al-anon and learn from the members about their experiences with their friends and families. Encourage your friend to check out local addiction meetings, such as AA, to find out what others are doing and receive support. He’s not alone.

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