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Illicit drugs

Michael Kimball, Staff Writer Modified: February 17, 2009 at 11:32 am •  Published: July 27, 2008
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Illicit drug addicts face a problem those battling other addictions don’t: No matter how they obtain, possess, share and use it, their drug of choice is illegal.

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Addictions of all kinds cause problems with an impact that can’t be measured, but not all carry the potential for immediate legal consequences.

The trouble is, that isn’t usually enough to deter a person in the depths of addiction.

“Addiction takes over,” said Marvin Smith, a life and addiction counselor at Catalyst Behavioral Services in Oklahoma City. “The last thing they (addicts) think about is consequences.”

Even before he chose his profession, Smith saw the far-reaching consequences of addiction. With a pained chuckle, Smith described the “strong background” of addiction within his own family as he was growing up, which was part of his motivation to become an addiction counselor.

“If I were to treat 20 people and only helped one, I’d feel pretty good about that because I know the impact that just one person can have,” Smith said. “I know I helped to change one life, and who knows how many people that person will help in his own life later on, and the people who know him who are better off because he beat his addiction.”

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