‘I had only one option, to quit drugs or die’

Addiction – be it of alcohol, smoking, a person or drugs takes a toll on your mental and physical health. Similarly, a 34-year-old drug addict from Mumbai had hit the rock bottom but by a conscious decision, strong will power and family’s support, he managed to beat the addiction

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At the age of 14, when children oscillate between classes and extra curricular activities, Vian Shroff (name changed), an Andheri resident, got into drugs since the year 1995. “I was 14-years-old, when I got into drugs. It was out of curiosity, fun and peer pressure,” said Vian.

Vian informed that he didn’t get an addict overnight. It’s a slow and a gradual process. “Whenever something didn’t go right, it help me to cope up. And before I could understand, I became an addict. When drugs came in, all my priorities disappeared. My focus was only from where I would get drugs and how to source money. I was caught consuming drugs and I was terminated from my job.”

According to Vian, he couldn’t deal with his problems. “I was happy after taking drugs and felt that the problems would disappear. But I was wrong; I was running away from it. After 15 years, I hit the rock bottom. When I looked in the mirror, I was embarrassed and ashamed of myself. From 60 kgs my weight dropped to 45 kgs. I became weak.”

When Vian turned 21, he realised that the only option for is to quit drugs and live a healthy life. “I had only one option, to quit drugs or die. I wanted to live so I chose life. I went to 8 rehabilitation centres, underwent 15 detox programs and visited 3 counselors. This continued till the age of 31.”

Meanwhile, in Vian’s tempestuous journey, he was on the verge of losing his family. “My family wasn’t happy. But my wife who is my backbone, she knew it all. Still, she married me. She had put a condition that if I don’t quit, we won’t have a baby. She helped me. It has been 3 years since I quit. And I have a baby boy now.”

Currently, Vian who is 34 and has given up drugs said that while he was taking drugs, he had no goal in his life. But now, his life is meaningful. Now, Vian who helps the addicts said. “We will always have to be alert and in control. I talk to the addicts as we are like a mirror for each other. We help each other. Society needs to know about addiction. It’s not something people do on purpose. Society should understand that drug addicts aren’t criminals. They shouldn’t be punished. Instead, help them to beat the addiction.”

He signed off by saying, “Earlier, I felt exhausted, fatigued, irrigated and weak. Now, I feel happy, mentally sound, healthy, active and strong.”