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Drugs & Alcohol
Harm Reduction

Drugs & Alcohol

People use drugs and alcohol for many different reasons, and drug use and misuse are two very different things. Whether or not you have a problem depends on what, how often, and why you choose to use. (survey possibly?) Black MSM may turn to using drugs and drinking due to feelings of isolation and or alienation caused by racism and homophobia.

Dealing with these things daily can be difficult, and you might feel like it’s easier to use drugs or alcohol to help you escape these feelings—and places like bars or clubs might make drinking and drugging easier. Unfortunately not dealing with drug and alcohol misuse may place you in situations which put you at risk. You might be concerned about asking for help and worried that the counselor will not understand your problem or respect your sexual lifestyle; you may also fear racial/sexual discrimination. But it’s important to know that guys who use drinking and drugs to deal with emotional issues usually take harmful risks while under the influence

While drunk or high, you may find you have unprotected sex more often (or can’t remember either way), which can expose you to STIs, STDs and put you in harm’s way. Rape, sexual assault and physical abuse are also issues you may have to face if you’re abusing. If you use drugs such as crack cocaine or heroine, you may end up sharing equipment for with others which puts you at risk for infections and disease. If you choose to continue using alcohol and drugs, it’s best to learn harm reduction options that can help you take better care of yourself.

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