Philip Seymour Hoffman was a son of privilege (father a big league Xerox exec and mother a judge). He was college educated and presumably at least of reasonable intelligence, he had a long term relationship with three kids and a career that couldn’t have been much better.
I’m not being judgmental when I say I can’t understand how somebody like him could pick up a needle and inject themselves with (or snort) heroin to begin with. How can intelligent people take that first snort/injection/pipe/whatever to begin with when, at least intellectually, EVERYBODY knows that cocaine/heroin/meth/etc. have destroyed enough lives, even those of strong willed and intelligent and successful people, to fill at very least a small nation?
I can understand an addiction to alcohol- it’s socially acceptable and there’s the gradual “invisible curtain” factor. I can understand smoking pot, but while it’s habit forming it’s not addictive. I’ve never had an alcohol or drug problem, but I was a smoker for more than 20 years and have no doubts I’m still addicted to tobacco; however, when I started smoking it was commonly seen and socially acceptable and something I’d grown up in the house with.
I’m not a particularly strong willed person. I had an extremely depressing teen years and early 20s during which I worked in hotels and restaurants and lived in low income neighborhoods and thus, because of all of these, had ample access to drugs, and I used to smoke marijuana irregularly (and responsibly), but I was never even for a minute tempted to take that first illegal “hard drug” bump. It was strictly because of what I’d read and seen with my own eyes and on TV and in movies; even having grown up in rural Alabama long before the Internet and even knowing that REEFER MADNESS was propaganda bullshit and even without a bad example of an addict in daily life I still knew that it really is true that “drugs are bad, m’kay?” and even at my lowest, even when I was suicidal a couple of times, it never remotely tempted me to use, because I knew that then I’d just be as fucked as I already was but with an illegal habit that could find me in prison or a flop house while offering no solution at all.
Again, I’m not judging or moralizing, but I honestly DON’T UNDERSTAND HOW PEOPLE START USING HARD ILLEGAL DRUGS. Is it a mental illness that lowers their judgment? Peer group? Weak will? Suicidal ideation? What is the best way to explain it?
Not rhetorical questions- I’m really trying to gain insight.
And if anybody else has questions about addiction, please feel free to add them.