17 and Hooked on Benzo Dope

published on May 19, 2022 by Manisha Krishnan in VICE

ABBOTSFORD, British Columbia — The first time Carrie smoked “down,” a street name for fentanyl, heroin, and other illegal opioids, she said she was held captive for four days inside a tent by a much older man who’d given it to her.

Either 13 or 14 at the time, Carrie, now 17, said the man, who was in his mid-20s, told her he was giving her “shatter,” a weed extract. She’d met him in passing at a local park where she knew people smoked weed.

“I smoked it and instantly I was fucking throwing up all over everywhere, and I just couldn’t move for four days,” said Carrie. (VICE News is only using her first name to protect her privacy.) She said the man hid her cellphone and her belongings in a bag in the dirt outside the tent in Abbotsford, a city about an hour’s drive from Vancouver. It wasn’t until he was “nodded out,” when opioid users appear to lose consciousness, that she managed to recover her phone, grab her things, and escape—in bare feet in the middle of the night.

But she wanted more of the dope. “It was only five days of smoking and I was already fucking addicted,” she said…

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