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iMMn m MabUi -mi ,■.-;■,.-■,•
AUGUST 27, 2004
did us in'
At first, the crystal, and all the pig sex that came with it,
was euphoric. But when Tim woke to his lover and a
room of strangers, he knew things were out of control.
By MUBARAK DAHIR
IM ADMITS THAT, AT FIRST,
the crystal was euphoric.
"I'd be lying if I said I didn't enjoy it," he concedes. In
the beginning, the drug
Tim, who asked that his
and his lover's names be changed, had
always been a little "uptight" about sex. "I
always held back," he explains. "Crystal
made it seem OK to be a sex pig."
Unlike many men who use the drug,
Tim never had problems with an erection while doing crystal. "That made me
extremely popular at the sex parties,"
It also seemed to give him an "in" with
the A-list crowd. As a gay man living in
one of the gayest places in America, that
was something he had always craved.
"All these beautiful men who never
showed me anything but attitude were
now hanging around," Tim recalls. "I felt
like I'd 'made it.'"
The first time Tim did crystal, he didn't even know what it was. His lover, Pat,
put the powder on a plate, cut it into lines
with a credit card, and rolled up a dollar
bill. Before Tim knew it, he was snorting.
"I was doing it with my partner. We
were doing it together," says Tim now.
"He seemed to know what he was doing. I
trusted him, and so I thought it was OK."
WITHIN A FEW MONTHS, TIM AND
Pat went from using crystal sporadically,
to using it on a regular basis.
As soon as Pat got off work on Friday,
he'd score some Tina. He'd get on the computer and start looking for other men to
invite over for sex parties.
But when they were doing crystal, Tim
and Pat could never get enough sex. After
the first trick left, they'd be back online,
encouraging more men to come over, enticing them with crystal and unbridled sex.
It wasn't long before Tim and Pat's
entire weekends were dedicated to partying and screwing.
"There was a little voice in the back of
my head that was screaming, 'Danger!'
But it was so scary, I felt like we were in
so deep, I didn't know how to turn back,"
Tim says now. "So I'd take a bump to
silence the voices."
Still, Tim did worry. Tim was suspicious that Pat was doing crystal during
the week. Pat, once a built, stocky man at
6-foot-2 and 260 pounds, had lost 75
"He told everyone he was doing the
Atkin's diet," Tim says.
AFTER A YEAR OF THIS, TIM TRIED TO
talk to Pat. But Pat turned belligerent.
Whenever Tim expressed doubts about
what crystal might be doing to their lives.
Pat would threaten to leave.
Tim wanted desperately to salvage the
decade of love he had shared with Pat. At
least if they were doing crystal together,
he continued to think, they could watch
out for each other.
But then one Sunday morning, Tim got
out of bed to find half a dozen strangers
lying around naked in the living room.
Pat was seated on the sofa, with a guy on
either side of him. Everyone was
"tweaked out of their minds," says Tim.
"They were all sitting around watching
a porno movie, trying to masturbate,"
Tim recalls. "But none of them really
could, because they were all flaccid.
They weren't even touching each other,
and they all had these blank stares on
their faces," Tim recounts. "I realized
how pathetic we had become."
TIM STILL THOUGHT HE COULD SAVE
his lover and his relationship.
But Pat wouldn't talk about it. Any
time Tim tried to raise the subject, Pat
would get moody and angry
Tim began noticing, too, just how
much money was disappearing. Pat would
often make $300 withdrawals, sometimes
twice a day. When Tim confronted him,
Pat would simply brush it off as a "business expense" for work.
But it wasn't long before Pat, who had
earned a solid six-Figure salary, lost his
job. Pat did land a second job, but soon
started missing appointments and meetings with clients.
Tim was now convinced that crystal
was wrecking their lives. He pleaded
with Pat to go with him to get professional help. He tried begging, crying,
screaming, threatening, cajoling, promising. But Pat wouldn't, or couldn't, stop
THEN PAT GOT SICK. FOR TEN DAYS,
Pat was in bed, sweating and soiling the
sheets. His body became covered in spots
from second stage syphilis. Both Tim and
Pat got scared.
They went and got tested. They both
had syphilis. And Pat's HIV test came
It was hard news, bad news, but Tim
thought that maybe it would somehow be
a turning point for them.
He hoped it would shock Pat into realizing how out of control the crystal had
become, how it was destroying their lives.
Tim still loved Pat. He could deal with
"I thought maybe, in a weird way, this
would save him and our relationship."
But Pat looked at it differently.
"I've already got HIV, so now I can do
anything I want," Pat told Tim.
FOR SEVERAL MORE MONTHS, TIM
still tried to hang on, to win back from the
crystal the man he had once loved.
Then one weekend, Pat disappeared for
three days, without a word. Later, Tim
would find out he had gone on a crystal
and sex binge.
"I didn't know if he was dead or alive,"
But Tim knew what he had to do. After
two years of struggling with the devastation of crystal, Tim left both Pat and the
drug that had consumed him.
Tim has since found out from other
friends that Pat is now "slamming":
injecting crystal into his arms.
Tim is still saddened by what happened.
"We had survived so many other
things in our relationship: job losses and
parents dying and affairs with other
men. But this one was too big. The crystal did us in."
Mubarak Dahir is
editor of the Express
Gay News and can be
reached at maah»l5>express-