I buy legal drugs from a secret online community
Matt*, 18, is a regular user of legal highs and a member of a secret online drugs community. He tells TheSite.org about his experiences on legal highs and how he believes they need to be treated with caution.
After being in a car accident I suffered from headaches and neck problems and was prescribed an over-the-counter painkiller. I then found out it could be used recreationally and was soon addicted. I had an awful factory job and would take it as an escape. But things got out of hand and I ended up hooked. At one point I projectile vomited 17 times and felt awful for days afterwards. So I began taking Kratom instead as it felt cleaner than other opiates. When I first took Kratom it felt amazing. I got such a warm feeling, like everything would be OK. I now habitually take Kratom as well as smoking marijuana, and trying the odd new thing like DXM.
I got into this online drugs community after I moved town and had no dealer. I was looking for a MOM (mail order marijuana service) and someone pointed me towards this site. It's a very secret and very private legal and illegal drug sourcing community; I can't say more than that.
It's not really a place to deal, more a directory to show people where to get drugs. Research chemicals, or chemical legal highs, are getting more popular so we have a section where people can post detailed reports of trying new drugs, such as how big a dose to take, a timeline of when effects set in and how they feel throughout the high. The aim is to help people who want to use new drugs to be safe and well-informed.
We did have an in-house mephedrone dealer. He would buy massive amounts and sell it to us cheap. But it turns out he was using the money to fund his heroin habit. He overdosed soon after he began selling to us and died. It was very sad.
Most research chemicals are produced overseas then imported here in bulk. Most of the packages are marked as imports, but they are technically legal so they don't get confiscated. Also, legal high traders are very good at concealing things in the mail.
Some legal highs should just be avoided
The dangers of legal highs
Just because a drug is legal doesn't mean it's weak. Even natural highs like Salvia can be very intense and much more powerful than marijuana. I think the main concern is how some of these drugs are very new and haven't been widely researched yet. People have been smoking marijuana or taking opium for hundreds of years, so people know the effects. The same is not true for drugs that are only a matter of years or months old.
A lot of legal drugs are just as powerful, if not more powerful than their illegal counterparts. And just like illegal drugs, they are a mix of those that are quite safe, some that need to be used with caution and some that should just be avoided. It's also a learning process; there are some we thought were OK, like JWH-018, but now the online community is hearing it could cause cancer.
The future of legal highs
I really doubt there's anything the government can do about legal highs. They'll keep banning them without any thought, and chemists will just come up with new formulas. They are becoming more and more popular because of their availability - and of course it eradicates that worry about getting in trouble with the law.
All drugs can be dangerous - legal or illegal - if used in the wrong way. It's important people have a trusted place they can visit to get the facts before trying them.
*A false name has been used