What I Wanted to Say Was..

Sex, drugs and more drugs

No matter how many ways, or on how many different days I take the Myers-Briggs personality test, it always comes up the same. I’m an introvert. Always will be, always have been. A cavewoman. A hermit. Crowds are not my thing. Who am I kidding, company is not my thing. It’s as if I run on limited battery time when it comes to being in the presence of others. Kind of like a mobile phone, as soon as I start talking, it’s only a matter of time before my battery runs out. And If I was a phone battery, I’d be in a Blackberry. Short and sweet. Quarter life, never mind half.

Some people are born gregarious, but others have company thrust upon them while they are out of the country. I’m with the latter group, despite my instinctual aversion to being lumped together as part of any gathering. If I wasn’t born into a family, family is not something I would have chosen. I love them loads. But sometimes I just want to love them from afar.

If this lengthy preamble says anything at all, it would be that in recent months, solitude has not been forthcoming. I have been submerged in a deluge of activity, the kind of which has required an incessant recharging of the olde battery. I used to be a Blackberry, now I’m an unwitting Energizer.

I would complain much more (yes, it is possible) if the reason for this amplified sense of community was not so necessary. I found myself centre stage in a drama that was unfolding in a parallel universe. One populated by tweens, teens, pimps and drug dealers. A world that even now, sounds like the figment of an adolescent’s imagination, but one that does exists, side by side with what adults call normal.

To break it down, kids are having sex and doing drugs. 10 and 11-year-olds y’all. As in CHILDREN. MaryJane is spreading like a damn weed. They’re buying it in ‘mabuyus’, cakes, cookies, sweets. And if they want a blunt, they can get that too. Not ati on some darkly-lit, street corner in a dodgy part of town. AT THE KIOSK. In the neighbourhood. Dealers walk the streets with the kind of impunity reserved only for public officials. For them, and for these kids, it’s no big thing. Weed is not a drug. Heroin and cocaine are drugs. Weed is medicinal. And none of them have cancer y’all. Lord knows what a child is self-medicating at age 12.

Most disturbing is the narrative that “people have issues”. And people with issues do drugs. That’s how the deal. Not to downplay issues at all, but as a pre-teen, in a two parent, middle-class household, you got 99 problems, but a real ‘issue’ ain’t one. Even if you did, it’s probably because you got high, not the other way round. Dang. Maybe I’m a little late to the party, but very honestly, this is shocking, even in 2013.

I was just getting over children having sex, when I learned that they have sex in groups. Not only are they doing each other enmasse, they’re doing drugs at the same time. Sounds like verse out of the Satanic bible. More so when you consider that this kind of thing happens everywhere – even in church.

It wouldn’t be so bad if these kids could opt out. But the way it was explained to me, opting out isn’t ‘cool’. Kids who are not part of the SDRR (sex, drugs and rock and roll) crowd are shamed for their independence. Kids who ‘snitch’ are ostracized. It’s very much like being in a gang. These kids are living by a code, and if they don’t honour it, they are expelled from their parallel ‘society’ and publicly ridiculed – in person, on Facebook, Twitter, everywhere.

Shocking, really, that this is what the world has come to. And yet, “there is nothing new under the sun.” Times such as these have come and gone, and come again. Somehow, that’s not very comforting. Whatever the case, as these blemished role models are raising themselves up against the good conscience of our young nation, we must make the effort to identify and support the kids who want to protect their mental health, and indeed the future of this great country of ours. So the next time you meet a ‘clean teen’, get your mentorship groove on. We need to folks. It’s a jungle out there. For real.