Tik is not for me

You have probably heard of Tik. It is the street name for a very dangerous drug with the chemical name Methamphetamine. It is also called crystals, speed, straws and globes and it looks mostly like white, half-transparent pieces of glass or like a powder. It is sometimes sold in short sections of drinking straws or bank baggies and then smoked in a light bulb or in a specially made glass pipe. Tik is very easy to come by – even though it is one of the most dangerous drugs. If you have used it once, you can get addicted to it immediately. Then you will do anything to get your hands on it.

 “I only smoked Tik once in my life. At first it tasted like burnt plastic, but only for a few seconds. Then it was just… nice. I didn’t feel bad at all. Although I did not realise it, I started doing terrible things. I remember how my friend and I raced from one ATM to another to get money for more Tik. How we were in places where people pulled guns on us. We stopped and smoked more Tik.
My hands were burnt from smoking… I saw how my friend fought with people over R300 worth of Tik and almost got shot. In some or other way I managed to get home, and then I realised that something was wrong… my whole body hurt. My muscles cramped, it even hurt to breathe. I sweated and it felt like my whole body would explode. I saw things that weren’t really there. Shadows of tiny people running around, millions of spiders and insects against the wall that looked like they were melting. I was so thirsty, but water tasted like petrol. I tried to sleep. Only an entire day later did I manage to fall asleep, but I had confusing dreams the whole time. When I woke up, I had to drive to another town. At first I was okay, but then I started to panic. It felt like my heart would explode inside my chest, like I would pass out at any moment. I thought that if I ate something I would feel better and I stopped at a café next to the road. While I was eating, I felt how much my mouth hurt. There were small white blisters in my mouth, on the roof of my mouth and on my tongue. While I was driving, I kept hearing voices and seeing things that were not real. After another night’s sleep I started to feel better. Even now, a year after that night, I still do not feel entirely like myself. And the worst is that I am so ashamed about what I did that night, things that I cannot even talk about. Do not use Tik – at best you could maybe have a bad experience like me which stays with you for the rest of your life, or after just using it once you could get addicted and then you lose everything….”

What happens when someone uses Tik?

  • They talk a lot;
  • Feel “good” for a while;
  • Cannot sit still;
  • Feel very confident;
  • Stay awake for long, even for days;
  • Do not really get hungry.
  • And when the Tik has worn off?
  • They start to feel bad;
  • Look for trouble;
  • Are nervous;
  • Are hot tempered;
  • Get angry for no reason;
  • Feel unhappy and depressed;
  • Just want to lie down and do nothing.And then the vicious cycle starts again. The person starts to crave Tik to feel better again. But every time the Tik wears off, they feel worse than the previous time.

Addiction

Tik is addictive. Even if you want to stop, you cannot. You also have to use more Tik to get the same feeling as the first time. You also start to feel guilty and lie to other people about your Tik use. These are all signs of addiction.

But why is Tik bad for you?

If someone is addicted to Tik, it can affect their whole life in a negative way.

School

You don’t go to school anymore. You don’t do your homework. You fall asleep in class and want nothing to do with people who used to be your friends.

Parents and family

  • Swearing and shouting at parents and other people;
  • Taking things that don’t belong to you;
  • Coming home very late;
  • Locking themselves in their room;
  • Not eating with the family;
  • Not settling down when the others go to bed.
  • Behaviour and appearance
  • Quick tempered and looking for trouble;
  • Keeps to themselves;
  • Messy and untidy on their clothes and themselves;
  • Can no longer be depended on;
  • Thinks that people are following them or insulting them for no reason;
  • Relationships with friends who are a bad influence.

Health

  • Weight loss;
  • Sores on arms, legs or face;
  • Bad breath, sores in mouth and bad teeth;
  • Coughs often and struggles with a closed chest;
  • Dry skin;
  • Continuous headache.
  • Tik changes people’s
    appearance unrecog-nisably.
  • Tik makes your teeth rot.

When you use Tik, it feels like there are insects under your skin and you scratch it continuously. You scratch until you break the skin eventually and it becomes big, unsightly sores.

Can one be helped if you use Tik?

Of course addicts can be helped to live without Tik. But, when someone is already addicted, it is very hard to stop, and even harder to try and stop alone.

The good news is that there are people and organisations who can help people who use Tik to stop. Speak to a teacher, the people at the day-clinic or a minister who would know how to help someone with such a problem.

At the bottom of this pamphlet is a list of organisations with trained personnel who can help someone with a Tik problem. If you want help with your Tik use or are concerned about a friend or family member, you can phone them directly and make an appointment.

And of course we also need to ask the Lord to help us. He can truly help! He badly wants to help.

What can we do to stop Tik? 

Tik ruins people’s lives and we have to do everything in our power to help people not to use Tik. There is an old but very true saying: Prevention is better than a cure.

Never even start using it!

  • Say no when someone challenges or dares you to use it for the first time. You are not chicken or a coward if you say no – saying no is the bravest thing you can do.
  • Stay away from people who use Meth.
  • Stay away from places and parties where drugs are available.
  • We have to be vigilant to see the dangers in time.
  • We have to tell our parents if our friends or other people hand out drugs.
  • We have to care for one another and help one another where we can.
  • We have to live close to Jesus – if we love Him and do as He asks, it will go well with us.

He will provide. He promises us in His Word:

Psalm 145:14

The LORD supports all who fall down, straightens up all who are bent low.

Psalm 116:5

The LORD is merciful and righteous; our God is compassionate.

Psalm 103:12

As far as east is from west – that’s how far God has removed our sin from us. Like a father having mercy on his children, God has mercy on those who serve him.

Find help here:

SANCA – 0861 4 SANCA (0861 472 622)

BADISA – (ask for the number of the office closest to you) – 021 957 7130

Narcotics Anonymous – 083 900 MY NA (083 900 6962)

Speak to a teacher, minister or pastor, someone at the clinic or a social worker.

Compiled in conjunction with SANCA WC

www.sancawc.co.za

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