There is no HERO in HEROIN
A Very Real Solution to a Very Serious Problem
WE NEVER SAW IT COMING
On March 22nd 2017, we lost a close friend of ours to a heroin overdose laced with fentanyl, his name was Will, a University of Pittsburgh student; he was only 23 years old. Before Ian died, he helped create the foundation for Lovectious and dreamed of a culture that valued honesty and acceptance for a very real and serious issue never talked about; drug addictions. As his friends, we knew that there was an underlying issue with his substance abuse; but we never said anything. The things we did say to Ian were not emphasized strongly enough to get our point across, and as a result he developed a heroin addiction behind closed doors away from everyone’s view. We all wanted to talk to him about his issues but none of us felt like it was our place to do so. Now more than ever and in consideration of everything, we wish so badly that we’d have taken the time to at the very least try.
Why is this so hard? Why isn’t anybody really trying to fix this? Why did Ian have to die so young? How could we even help? What are we supposed to do when nothing is working?
Ian is only one person. Again, Will is only 1 person of the nearly 40,000 that die each year in the U.S. alone, and this number is growing exponentially every day. I have lost 13 friends in the past 6 years from heroin. Heroin does NOT care. This deathly seductive, black-hole of a chemical compound does not discriminate against who you are, what you have, or where you come from. People are losing loved ones all over this country and around the world to a drug that literally takes over people’s lives and controls them through unimaginably powerful cravings. The demonic grips of heroin’s addiction are very real and scary, and those who are afflicted will tell you that they cannot break free without our help. Everyone is involved in this opioid epidemic, regardless if you choose to use drugs or not. As a society of human-beings who love the ones around us, we need to band together, and unless we are honest about the problem, unless we are willing to take responsibility, we will continue to fall short of finding any real solution.
With all of these seemingly random, unfortunate and unnecessary deaths that happen from drug addictions and overdose, why isn’t anybody doing anything about it? For the people that are trying to do something, why do their efforts seem ineffective?
NO ONE WANTS TO TALK ABOUT DRUGS – AFFILIATION COMES WITH SOCIAL REPERCUSSIONS
Addressing drug usage in our society is risky. If not talked about sensitively, a person can lose their job, their friends and family, and destroy their entire reputation in only a matter of seconds. Why does this happen? According to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, after a person’s physiological and safety needs are fulfilled, the third level of human needs is interpersonal. This means a person needs to fit in socially with their communities. Do not underestimate how much power the feeling of “fitting in” has over people. This makes addressing issues that are taboo unpopular and has potential for risking social suicide and personal isolation.
Lovectious talks about drugs and mental health with honesty. Our team whole-heartedly believes that through honesty and teamwork, as a society, we can begin healing ourselves of the many disastrous afflictions that have come from drug addictions and mental health. We need to have these tough conversations just as we need to be devoted to having them for the remainder of our lives; we are, and will always be, the catalysts of change. It is the responsibility of every individual in each generation to make the world a better and safer place. By conducting the necessary research, based upon but not limited to, the inner social circles of people whom participate in drug usage; Lovectious plans to facilitate positive change. Using drugs and risking addiction is only the tip of the iceberg for all other various collateral damages that come with the culture.
Our Lovectious mission is to communicate these social paradigms and disguised complexities as often as possible, with a clear message of consequences and strategy advice for a healthier lifestyle, all coming from a team of people with experience you can trust.
IGNORANCE BREEDS FEAR, AND FEAR PARALYZES ACTION
How many people do you suspect secretly participate in regular recreational drug use?
Before you think about your answer, let me define what a drug actually is:
– Any substance which has a psychological or physiological effect when ingested or otherwise introduced into the body.
From cigarettes to cannabis, Xanax to heroin, and alcohol to coffee, people all over the world ingest “drugs” on a daily basis. The 1st step in being a part of the solution, is to understand the root of the problem. Lovectious urges people to be specific when talking about drugs; each drug is different, just as each person is unique. Ambiguity can be good for communicating difficult material to broad audiences, but specificity reaches people individually. When in conversation with someone addressing the consequences of using drugs, a snowball effect of seriously personal, physiological, psychological and interpersonal problems also begin to unravel such as:
- Addiction and Overdose
- Mental Health and Depression
- Job Performance
- Financial Strain
- Degraded Friend and Family Relationships
- New friend circles encouraging drug use
- Social Isolation
If we don’t start talking about drugs like adults, then ALL of the other problems that come from using drugs become taboo as well. Not feeling comfortable talking about these issues is exactly why all of our friends, family members, co-workers, brothers, sisters and children are dying in larger numbers each day. We are at a pivotal point in our collective history where discussing issues such as substance abuse, mental health and addiction are becoming more acceptable. This is our opportunity to reinforce positive behaviors, encourage difficult discussions and promote a healthier society through empathetic understanding that may very literally, save someone’s life one day soon.
We are all afraid of losing a close friendship because we told them they might have a problem. It’s easy to imagine how hearing something you may not like, agree with or be ready to hear could cause a large rift between you and the person brave enough to tell you. In order for this type of message to get across with as little social repercussions as possible, there are two ideas that must be considered:
- You, yourself, must always have a sense of humility IF approached by your family and friends concerning your unhealthy life choices.
- Even if you don’t agree with what people are telling you, having a sense of trust that these individuals care enough to say something and it all comes from a place of love and respect will calm you enough to hopefully be able to listen to them.
- Friends who stick together are supposed to take care of another, no matter how difficult the situation.
- It only takes 1 person to start the conversation, but it takes an entire committed group of friends to support a person’s change.
There are examples of hierarchy within social circles, meaning one person’s friendship outranks another, and in some cases may become a political game as to who stays in the group and who gets kicked out. When the thought occurs that someone may kill or harm themselves because of the personal choices they make, then a decision must be rendered: Say something or Not. In these moments, we might feel like our words don’t hit how we intend them to, and the person we are speaking to becomes hostile or threatened. From fear of social isolation, it’s understandable why most people would keep to themselves; however, if you believe in your friendship, then let your words resonate for a little bit of time. Change almost never happens immediately. If you choose not to say anything, then try to not to get mad at yourself when you’re at their funeral whispering to silently to each other that you should have said something. We would much rather have an alive friend who hates us, then a dead friend we should have talked to.
THIS IS AN OUTREACH PROGRAM, UNDERSTANDING THE DIFFERENCE
Don’t touch that shiny bright button! Don’t eat those cookies! Don’t ask me about that! Don’t you dare Google that! Don’t ever hang out with those friends again!
Historically speaking, prohibition has NEVER ONCE WORKED. Anybody that tells you what to do, and especially what not to do, only creates a desire to do the very thing prohibited, ironic right? No it’s not if you think about it. We are all adults and we will continue to do what we want, when we want, with whom we want to do it with. Nobody can stop a culture and if they try, they will find their futile efforts falling on deaf ears because this is our life and no one else’s. I have a universal right to the sovereignty of my own mind and body, meaning I have the personal freedom to do what I want. If you think that I am the only person who feels this sense of divine righteousness, then ask the person next to you. We ALL feel this way in some manner or another.
Our name is Lovectious (Infectious Love) and we have a plan to bridge these gaps.
Since we cannot stop people from using drugs, then our only solution is to talk about them the way they should be talked about; with honesty. Not all drugs will kill you, and most accidents or injuries could be avoided if used appropriately for the right reasons and under the right circumstances. By reaching the people already using drugs in a way that promotes healthy and safe practices, we are able to funnel addiction support and recovery resources to each person. This is an outreach program, so we are reaching out.
LOVECTIOUS – INFECTIOUS LOVE: THE SAFETY MUSIC FESTIVAL
If you want people to change, then you have to make the desired change popular.
Our team defined Lovectious as:
“The feeling you get when your own personal energy is vibrating in synchronicity with those around you, evoking a powerful sense of well-being and unity in the World.”
It is much easier to find fish in a lake than it is a street puddle. You have to go where the people are. Our vision is to create and host the 1st music festival at the start of each festival season, to invite people in and encourage fun through the power of sobriety. By using Art, Health, Science, Safety & Love to become the change, and exemplify the meaning of tolerance; which we feel is so desperately needed. Our PRIMARY objective is focused on drug safety, education and intervention strategies because this objective has an undefined time urgency, with human lives on the line. We are pushing the importance of this because people need it today. People needed this help yesterday too. Lovectious believes in explaining and demonstrating the importance of drug safety with all of the inherent dangers of an overdose, recognizing addiction, providing endless resources for all types of support and rehabilitation, all while together sharing a beautiful experience over music, under the stars, dancing and standing united, as a tribute for every person’s life, past and present, affected by drug addictions.
FACT: Music festivals bring people together.
Lovectious is a company built on honesty. We have chosen to not only host music festivals, but to audit and recommend continuous improvements for the festivals that already exist, because it there that people are most willing to accept new ideas. It doesn’t matter if you are a lawyer, a doctor, a custodian, a priest or a college student; everyone who is fortunate enough to attend takes their career hats off and all egos are stripped at the gate. People see themselves for who they are and not who other people expect them to be. The culture at music festivals breaks down barriers and invites all faces from all backgrounds to experience the joys of life, together, without prejudice. Lovectious intends to encourage change, and music festivals are the ideal place for bringing such a message.
The Lovectious team has already started to develop the dialogue. We are in production of three YouTube channel series which we believe will popularize the very difficult but much needed conversations.
- Music Festival News: reports, reviews, festival recommendations, safety, updates and guest appearances by people making a positive change in the World.
- Recognizing Addiction – Intervention Strategies and Role Responsibilities (group talks)
- Drugs and Safety – Testing, Using, Effects, and Safety Information.
WE ARE A GENERATION OF REALLY DUMB, SMART PEOPLE; SO WE NEED TO BE SMART ABOUT MAKING DUMB DECISIONS
Drug testing kits have been available for several years now, but when you start talking about the difference between the Marquis and Mecke test, between the Erlich and Hoffman test, the Simon Cobalt Thiocyanate and the Mandelin test, the fancy big science words are mentally exhausting and most people’s eyes roll back into their head and give up before even trying to figure any of it out or how to properly use them. Below is a small table example to illustrate the difficulty and seemingly over-the-top incomprehensibleness of the chemistry terms used.
Our team is full of proud nerds, so let’s talk nerdy. My personal background in Forensic Chemistry makes explaining this difficult chemistry material a lot easier by using simpler terms in a way that people from all different kinds of vocation can understand.
If our friend Will, or his drug dealer, had tested their heroin for fentanyl before buying, selling or using; then Ian would still be alive. It is much easier to treat an addiction problem, than it is an overdose problem.
Example: Ian needs to stop using heroin as soon as possible and deep down he really wants to, but his addiction is slowing him down. One relapse over another, again and again, Ian is no longer comfortable telling his friends and family that he is still using heroin, he doesn’t want to see the disappointment on their faces, again. So he keeps his substance usage a secret and he does it in his own privacy, when nobody else is around. Since he doesn’t want an intervention and/or to be disliked by his peers, he keeps this problem to himself. One day a friend tells Ian that a company called Lovectious is helping people in his situation getting over addictions, without fear of judgement and discrimination. Ian goes online and orders a Lovectious care package specific to the drug Heroin. His care package arrives and includes the following items:
- Marquis Drug Test Kit
- Mecke Drug Test Kit
- Froehde Drug Test Kit
- DVD Instructional Guide
- Clean syringes and needles
- Narcan (Naloxone – Opiate Antidote)
- Heroin Addiction Resources
- Steps to quit and how to re-invent your life
Do you think that Ian would have survived had he obtained this care package before purchasing a laced batch of heroin? The truth is we don’t know, but maybe he would have.
THE WORST DECISION IS INDECISION
It is hard to come up with a perfect solution for a problem that has been growing for more than 80 years, and we understand that our plan isn’t the most desirable to some people. We too had a lot to talk about before agreeing with and introducing our model to the public. This is our perspective on the situation and we will do everything in our power to ensure a good message is communicated. We want to pull together all the various groups of people working on fixing the drug epidemic and provide a place for those to go who want honest answers, without fear, from a team of people with experience. An outreach program meets people in the middle, and the middle is exactly where Lovectious is going.
Our team is small, but our idea is Big.
Imagine a place that brings Science, Health, Education, Art, Beauty, Love and Music together with the purpose of healing a deeply rooted wound that has already gone too long untreated. We just started and are always looking for help, advice and ideas. None of us can really do anything of value alone, so we invite any and all people to be a part of this movement. If you want to travel fast, travel alone; but, if you want to travel far, travel together.
Saad Adam Kluzinski
Lovectious is a symbol for all the people that have crossed paths with you in your life -- whether you know them very well, a little bit, or none at all -- but you do know that they had a part in shaping the person you are today, the journey you've come to know, and the lives you've touched along the way.
Want to tell people to be safe but don't feel like actually saying anything?? Let our shirt speak for you - SAFETY FIRST, THEN WE PARTY! Makes sense right? So be smart and play your part in being a safety officer like us!
Learn more about Saad Kluzinski below.