Inability to imagine a life without drugs of some kind

It struck me that while I am a pretty functional person and am only intoxicated (on various substances, not necessarily or even primarily alcohol) around twice a week (and apart from say ten times at most a year these would be evenings) I’m actually completely unable to imagine a life where I am sober forever, and in fact I don’t think I would like that sort of life.

I don’t want this thread to be about me really though, so how do you all feel about this; that is to say: how important is changing your level of existance by chemical means to you?

I also welcome feedback on how this post should have been punctuated as it doesn’t look right, but request it by PM only.

well, just for contrast I offer myself. At age 42, I have never used any intoxicants except alcohol. I was never a big drinker and in the past few years alcohol stopped giving me any pleasure. I would move straight from sober to nauseaous and headachy. Every so often I give a glass of wine another try because I remember how nice it used to be, the last time being two nights ago at a dinner out, but I am always disappointed.

I never really feel a craving to get drunk or buzzed.

do you feel like it’s a problem that you can’t imagine life without intoxicants? Like do you get panicky at the thought of being trapped in your house for a week because of a blizzard or hurricane with plenty of food and electricity but no substances?

I would be a little sad if I had to face a life with no movies or TV. Add no books to that and we’re talking serious depression.

You take my Excedrin, I kill you.

Ask me again after my bachelor party.:cool:

^ and dismember your body and feed it to hogs.

I don’t regularly use any form of intoxicant any more, but I did so frequently when I was young (and I did inhale). Illegal drugs are too risky both due to their illegal nature and because there’s no quality control, so I’ve stayed clear of them since the late '70s and never missed them a bit. It was something I did for excitement and camaraderie, and I don’t seem to have it in me to get addicted to substances other than nicotine. (I still do miss that, but not nearly enough to put the shackles back on.) I guess at some point I just did a risk-benefit analysis and chose the safer route.

I do have an occasional shot of Bailey’s in my coffee or vodka in lemonade but never more than one, because almost immediately after drinking that one drink I lose my ability to speak coherently. I’m unclear on why I ever thought that was fun.

I take antidepressants, a narcolepsy drug and a tiny dose of a benzo as a sleep aid, but I do that just to maintain a semblance of functionality.

Except for a brief period in my late teens to early 20’s when I smoked the occasional joint, the only intoxicant I’ve ever had any interest in or consumed is alcohol.

I used to think, “damn, I love beer. I don’t know what I’d do if I couldn’t drink beer”. Then over a period of about 10 years, I began losing a real taste for it. I still drink one occasionally, like after working outside in the yard all day, but I’m not as interested as I used to be.

Then wine was my thing for a long time, but I slowly began to not enjoy it as I once did. I still drink it but two glasses is about my limit, and maybe 2-3 nights a week.

Occasionally I’ll make myself a killer martini but I don’t see that becoming my go-to drink.

My point- I’m gradually losing an interest in different types of alcohol, and it’s not outside the realm of possibility that in 10-15 years or so, I might not drink at all. If you had told me that 15 years ago, I’d recommend you have your head examined.

You could try imagining my life. I have never been drunk, had small sips of alcohol on only 4 or 5 occasions, and never tried any other intoxicant. I do take some medications, but none that are intoxicating, and I’ve never taken any painkiller stronger than Alleve.

There was one time in college when I took cough syrup for a cough and got slightly loopy.

I’d say on a scale of 1-10, 10 being most important, changing my mental state chemically is about a 0.

I certainly don’t want or need chemicals to alter my state of mind to enjoy life. I do drink on occasion, but I have a job where I work on a boat for 28 days straight, no alcohol or drugs. I also don’t smoke or drink coffee (or much caffeine at all really), so I am used to long stretches of no chemicals to alter me.

I tried but I got really sad and needed a drink.


I’ve only tried coffee twice, and didn’t like it, but I used to drink a fair amount of caffeinated tea. Around 10 years ago I was diagnosed with high blood pressure, and told to cut out the caffeine, so I did. Since then, I might have had the occasional cup of caffeinated tea when nothing else available, but I generally stick to decaf. Oh, and a few times a year I get a severe sinus headache that requires what I call “the nuclear option”: a painkiller that combines aspirin, aceteminophen and caffeine. This is only a last resort, because it causes big sleep problems.

My drug of choice is caffeine, but while I’m breastfeeding it’s mainly decaf.

Other than that, I’ve never taken any recreational drugs, have never been drunk and gave birth with just a little gas. My SO and friends drink and and have tried most rec drugs - I don’t necessarily believe our lives or enjoyment thereof are dramatically different - not drinking/taking drugs has never affected my ability to go out and dance in a club or enjoy a party, except I’ve always been able to drive myself safely home.

I’m 36 and don’t see this attitude changing at this point, unless I develop a debilitating disease where pot or other would significantly increase my quality of life.

I’ve had my time where I smoked a lot of pot and experienced other drugs like LSD and so on. They had their time and place and have changed points of view that otherwise may have remained. Of course, it’s hard to say what might or might not happen in an imaginary present and harder still trying to imagine that from a past in which I did not make the decisions I’ve made. It really isn’t worth thinking about too much. Having said that, I count those experiences as being worthwhile and valuable.

I don’t really like alcohol very much. I like to drink a nice beer once in a while but not to the point of total (or even partial) inebriation. It’s just a matter of not enjoying that kind of feeling anymore. Of course, asking my 18 year old self would have offered a very different response. Now I’m the most uptight and uncool late-20-something in the world. But I like that.

I do like coffee very much, so perhaps that’s a drug I wouldn’t necessarily enjoy living without. I don’t smoke cigarettes and never have (nor wanted to). I don’t take any kind of anti-depressants or stuff like that. Generally I don’t need any pain killers if that would count as a drug. The closest I get, really, are vitamins and supplements, but that hardly counts.

Overall, it would be fairly easy at this point to imagine a life without it but I don’t really see why that would be necessary. If I ever wanted to smoke a joint again, I don’t think it makes any real difference. Ditto if I wanted to drink a beer or whatever else. Life would go on just fine without them but I’m speaking from the position of a person who does not experience addiction in any real sense of the word.

I drink coffee, but alcohol has never appealed to me. I drink maybe one beer a month, for the taste, and certainly not enough to get drunk. The few times I have been drunk I found the experience generally unpleasant. Sort of like being vaguely confused and dizzy.

I’ve never tried anything harder.

I drink coffee daily and have 1-2 drinks with dinner a few times per week. I don’t like drunk people and I don’t like being drunk, so it’s easy to stop my alcohol consumption there.

I have heard interesting things about LSD. If it were legal, well-regulated, and proven to be safe, I wouldn’t object to trying it. As it is, the illegality and health risks vastly outweigh my mild curiosity about what it’s like.

Other than that, I have no interest in any kind of mind-altering drugs. “Drugs are for losers” is pretty much my opinion on the subject.

That’s a very limiting point of view.

If you’re talking prescription drugs, you would have to pry my Paxil from my cold, dead hands. I suffered from clinical depression for decades and this stuff gave me my mind back.

Unfortunately, it also interacts badly with alcohol, for me (YMMV). I dearly miss a nice cold martini, the pleasant warmth of a sip of single malt scotch, and the crisp refreshment of a cold beer. I abstain from these anyway as the after effects are worse.

I certainly can imagine a life without drugs of some kind, having lived that life, but have no desire to repeat the experience.

Oh, and if you classify caffeine as a drug, I suppose if I had to live without it I could do that too, but I would rather not. I loves me a good coffee.

So what I hear you saying is no. Even those who insist that they are clean living use caffeine and admit that it is desirable and even necessary at some point in the course of their lives.

Life without antihistamines, and occasionally decongestants, would be misery. My sinuses are defective. I’d sue, if I could figure out who to serve the papers to. Intoxication is not the point of either of those drugs, but they both have mood- and thought-altering side effects, so I suppose they count.

I do not naturally get along very well with business hours. Without caffeine, I have no idea how I’d function.

Could you elaborate on this?

Is it something about being intoxicated/high/whatever that you enjoy so much that you wouldn’t want to do without it? Or is it something about being sober that’s unpleasant or taxing enough that you feel you need to take a break from sobriety every now and then? (And, either way, what is that “something”?)