The harm in curiosity

Veronica Iseminger

According to, “9 out of 10 people with addiction started in their teen years.”

Veronica Iseminger, Perspectives editor

Ever since I was old enough to remember, the idea of using drugs and alcohol had always sounded like some far-off twisted nightmare. In fact, I had heard enough horror stories to scar my innocent mind into almost complete avoidance of the topic. To me, it had seemed pretty open and shut: don’t do drugs and stay in school. That same message being plastered on every wall and preached at every assembly in elementary through middle school made it hard to forget. Luckily, my friends and peers had grown up with the same stigma around drugs as I did, that is, until high school. 

It was as if everyone had been brainwashed over the summer by some dark shadow of opportunity that glorified drugs and alcohol. We were no longer suppressed by our childhood fears, but rather freed by a raging surge of curiosity that dangled dreams of fun and finally being seen in front of our faces like a sick prize. We began convincing ourselves that the stories we had heard when we were little would never happen to us, even to the point of believing we were invincible-that we were immune to the swirling cloud of rotting teeth, charred lungs and brain damage.

The more students that started getting involved and experimenting with drugs and alcohol only made it appear to be increasingly normalized and accepted amongst our peers. It wasn’t long before the same people that once vowed to keep themselves away from drugs had stopped taking the risks into consideration entirely. Curiosity whispered sweet, devilish lies into their ears making it just that much easier to give in. For a second, they wondered if everything they’d been told before was a myth. All of the negative side effects had been pushed to the back of their minds and replaced by a glamorous Hollywood depiction of drugs being a youthful form of rebellion and a one-way ticket to finding yourself. However, finding yourself often means finding how to cope with yourself. 

This was something I could barely come to terms with myself until I witnessed it happening to someone I’m close to. They were a straight-A student, never skipped class or broke rules, and came home every night to two loving and supporting parents. They didn’t fit the stereotype. If you were an outsider, you’d practically think their life was made, but oftentimes the concept of “perfection” holds many hidden impurities behind the surface. They had desires to find out what possessed their coworkers into complete submission and were curious as to why they’d heard so many awful things about drugs when everyone around them had seemed fine. The temptation was hardly conflicting in an atmosphere so enveloped in ignorance. It only took a few successful attempts to convince them it was safe. They were unstoppable, and it didn’t take a second thought transitioning into an everyday user. It was in reach and encouraged. So, when the day came that they were handed something new, they took it-still believing they’d be safe. Except for this time the high wasn’t anything like they had been used to, it didn’t wear off.

It took one time of being unknowingly laced for their parents to find them and their hidden secret. After experiencing hallucinations, vomiting, flushed skin and blackouts, their distraught parents rushed them to the ER immediately. A night intended to “have fun and get high” turned into a complete disaster they now regret and have to live with the consequences from. Trust was broken from not only their parents but from friends and their families as well. It’s devastating and incredibly scary for everyone involved. I could have very much lost a friend that night. 


This was when I realized that we were naive high school students all along. Every warning we had heard was to prevent this from happening. My message to you, the reader, is to avoid trying drugs for as long as and as much as you possibly can. It won’t be worth losing your friends and future for a drug that can take your life. Don’t let curiosity lead to your dentrement. I promise you a million times over that you have plenty of time to venture off and find your way in this world, but high school isn’t it, and drugs are not going to solve the piece that you’re missing.