News of substance – drugs in the worldwide news

1. Sydney Morning Herald (Australia) – Dating someone with an addiction. “They say love is like a drug, able to provide so much tantalising pleasure that when it exits from your life you’re bound to suffer from drug-withdrawal-like symptoms. Or so I expounded on yesterday’s blog. So why then are so many people these days obsessed with having to add a mood-enhancing stimulant into their loved-up picture?”

2. Jamaica Observer (Jamaica) – Getting help for drug addiction. “THE Association of Friends and Families of Substance Abusers (AFAFOSA), a not-for-profit body which was formed in 2003 and was re-launched earlier this year, is working to improve the lives of addicts like Roland Green, Fitzroy Brown, Kevin, Bruce, Max and ‘Munchie’.”

3. The Telegraph (UK) – Women and drug addiction. “The most shocking thing about the modern drug user? That she could be someone like you. Anna Moore talks to three ‘ordinary’ women about their struggles with addiction. Andrea Mackenzie 57, a divorced mother of three from Newquay, was first prescribed valium for back pain as a trainee teacher in 1969. She became addicted and continued to take it for almost 40 years.”

4. The National (United Arab Emirates) – Bestseller lays bare drug abuse in Egypt. “The bestselling book Quarter Gram, which is now in its eleventh print run and is being made into a film about the lives of six drug addicts from Cairo’s upper class, touches upon an epidemic in Egyptian society. Based on a true story, narrator Salah recounts his story and that of his five friends – Mido, Zoni, Rico, Bono and Lol – growing up in the 1980s and 1990s, as their experimentation with drugs descends into full-blown addiction.”

5. London Free Press (Canada) – Help now available for gaming addicts. “Canada’s first support group for addicted online gamers will launch tomorrow in London. Non-existent a decade ago, online gaming has more than 16 million people worldwide submerging themselves in a virtual world — sometimes for as long as 10 hours straight, said Brad Dorrance, founder of the London chapter of On-Line Gamers Anonymous, which started in the U.S.”

6. The Daily Breeze (USA) – PROP. 5 would help addicts recover. “Old arguments over treatment vs. punishment for drug addicts willing to try tough, rigorous recovery work have been shot down by reason, common sense and demonstrated successes, but in some minds, a judgmental hangover lingers. Still, a mind-set persists that it’s a moral failing and sin – not the sickness of spirit and body the medical profession long ago recognized – and needs to be punished. This hampers humane approaches to problem-solving.”