My Roommate’s Psychedelic Problem

by Nick Moffitt

(Seattle, WA)

Running downstairs I was greeted with a stammering lunatic. His wide eyes craved disruption. There was a look of guilt mixed with pure hatred painted across his sunken face. He was looking for trouble and it was up to me to calm him down.

Ever since he moved into my house he has been on a slippery slope into the depths of psychedelic hell. Most people who like to dip into acid or mushrooms do it as an experiment, a recreation, a way to alter the mind and see the world from a different perspective. Aldous wasn’t practicing responsible drug use. The rabbit hole was calling for him and he was determined to go as deep as possible, a quest to find something on the other side.

Psychedelic drug use can turn the most responsible people into spaced out citizens. With a standard dose of acid, mushrooms or 2C-I the walls will start to bend. People call it kaleidoscope vision because the designs in the carpet or the walls will start to morph together and real life will turn into an art project. A person high on psychedelics could spend all day looking at the wall because the distorted worldview is unique and like nothing else presented in the world. Because of this a person high on psychedelics can be prone to distraction because a morphing design will catch and demand attention. Because Aldous was tripping everyday his entire existence was inside of a kaleidoscope.

One day I woke to a loud THUMP. It sounded like someone dropped a bowling ball in the living room. I heard the sound again, THUD-UMP. I went downstairs to find Aldous lying on the floor in between the couch and the coffee table, moving slowly and trying to get to his feet. I helped him up as he grabbed onto my shoulder for support. He didn’t say anything but when he let go of me and tried to walk on his own he only made it a few steps before face planting again, narrowly missing his head against the wall.
Watching him walk, rather stumble, around the house was a horrifying sight. It was like he didn’t realize he had slits attached to his legs. His walk was comparable to someone who just drank a fifth of vodka and forgot how to stand. Sweat poured from his forehead and his black hair was wet and greasy. The center of gravity in his body was reduced to nothing; his limbs were sloppy and dangled off of his body like serpents. There was no looking him in the eyes, they looked like they were in the back of his head. The holes where his eyes should be were black like marbles sulking into his skull. The scariest part was that one of his eyelids wasn’t open all the way, it was crusted shut like a child with pink eye. There was no focus on his face or any noticeable activity in his brain. His lips were chapped and dry with dried with saliva pasted around his face like glue. His mouth hung open, unable to make out any words, chewing his own tongue as if it was a foreign object next to his teeth. He looked like a zombie, the walking dead.

This was the day of the worst of it, this was the day where his problems became too much for us to ignore anymore. Aldous was liable to burn the house down because it wasn’t unusual for him to forget to turn the stove off. He was harmful because he would fall and split open his arm, bleeding profusely, and not have the capabilities to bandage himself. He was dangerous because he harassed his roommates with sharp objects in the middle of the night.

“Aldous what are you doing?” I asked, trying to remain calm. He wasn’t the same blank eyed person from earlier that day, the drugs must be wearing off. Instead his eyes are sharp and distinct, there was a soul behind the black pupils, but it wasn’t the same Aldous who would be gracious for your presence. He stood by A-Real’s door with a credit card and a screwdriver in his hand, picking away at the crack, obviously trying to get inside. He looked at me like he was caught doing something.

“I’m just trying to talk to A-Real” his words were clear, I hadn’t heard him talk this way all week.

“A-Real doesn’t want to talk to you right now, its the middle of the night, he is probably trying to sleep.”

“I know he is awake, I can hear him listening to music. He is hiding the internet from me.”

“What are you talking about? I told you the guys from Comcast are coming on Friday to fix the Internet.” Something about this didn’t register with him. He blinked, looked at me blankly and then snapped. His eyes came alive with the devil’s glare.

“You’re in on this too! You’re just like the rest of them! You have the Internet and are holding out on me!” his anger was quick like light speed. He had successfully made it to phase three transitioning from friendly worldly traveler to drug addled fool to borderline psychopath. “And you stole money from my room,” he accused as he started to walk toward me menacingly.

I backed up and scanned the room, glancing a knife lying on the hardwood floor by his feet. I bent down with the quickness of a ninja and snagged the blade. “What’s this man? What are you planning on doing with it?”

“Its for my protection. I always carry around a knife.” He responded with no sign of remorse, almost more angry for accusing him of any wrong doing.

At that moment, A-Real opened up his door and poked his head out, unwilling to fully join the conversation. Behind his tired eyes was fear. He was bothered and scared. He didn’t want to face his madman but he did want to express his uneasiness. “Aldous you’re nuts, I need you to leave me alone.”

“A-Real, why are you hiding the internet from me?” he was determined to get reconnected online.

“A-Real, why don’t you go back in your room. I’ll stay here until Aldous calms down.” With that he went back into his room. Turning to the madman I said, “Aldous your drug use has become a problem.”

“I can do whatever I want in the privacy of my own room!” he declared, “I pay rent here, I can do what I want.”

“That’s not how things work. You can’t do whatever you want when you’re liable to hurt yourself or someone else in the house,” I said to him sternly. “You can’t treat people this way. You are harassing your roommates. It is the middle of the night. If you can’t handle yourself I’m going to call the police.”

In that moment a brief shriek of fury shot across his face and then he took a step back and looked around as if he was suddenly aware of where he was. The hallway seemed to shrink in front of both of us. He looked me in the eyes and blinked slowly, as if he was trying to communicate from the other side. I could almost see the normal Aldous trying to apologize but unable to really communicate with all of the emotions and drugs weighing him down like gravity. He frowned and turned around, retreating into his room.

The next day I gave Aldous his twenty-day notice. He wasn’t sure exactly what it was. He looked at it like he forgot how to read English. The landlord communicated with his dad and both of them showed up a few days later to get him out of the house and into rehab. Jerry, the landlord, executed his plan to perfection, which was to give Aldous no reason to stay. Jerry said at the very least he would be homeless in eighteen days, his dad was here to take him back to Texas, and if he chooses to not go with his dad, he will get a court order to get his vacated from the premises as soon as possible. After about an hour and half of discussion, Aldous got in the car with his dad and drove straight to Texas.

Just like that, Aldous and his dangerous drug use was out of my house and out of my life. After he left Jerry and I emptied his room. We boxed up all of his clothes, threw away all the empty organic juice bottles, swept up the garbage and put his dying plants outside. We scrubbed the walls and sanitized the floor.

Somewhere in the middle I found a suicide note. He wrote, “I am going to kill myself because I am not me. I am the anti-Christ. The hardest people for me to tell this to is my family who had done so much for me. Thanks mom and dad and grandma. You are an awesome family.”

What if Aldous had killed himself while living in my house? It is chilling for me to even think about. He had loved ones, people who cared about him. He would have been missed. Its scary to think about how easily someone can lose themselves. I’m glad we were able to help him and put him in the right direction.

I haven’t heard from him since he left. I don’t know if he got help in Texas. I still think about him and hope that he is doing okay.

Thanks for sharing your story!

by: Debbie Wicker

Thanks for sharing your story. It’s VERY helpful for people to read and realize what drug abuse and addiction are REALLY like. So many people think drugs are fun, and they want to “party” all of the time.

Many people also think that acid is NOT addictive so they can play around with it and be fine. Your story certainly proves the fallacy in that thinking!

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