In 2003, Robert Carter returned from service in the Navy to Portsmouth, his hometown. What his family did not know that he was a changed man, not for the good reason though- he went back home as a broken man. He had difficulty leaving his home and later diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder.


A tragedy crippled him during his time with the Navy. He saw how his crewmate on the USS Nassau, Dwayne Williams died in front of him. The accident left a deep cut in Carter’s heart and in his mind. He suffers from nightmares almost every time he slept how his friend died. To escape his inner demons, he found a group of people making illegal pill mills which comes in cheap and readily available methamphetamine. As a stimulant drug, meth produces a powerful high that can keep him awake for days. This makes it a perfect drug for Carter.

A very high price to pay


However, never having those nightmares comes in with a very high price to pay. The harsh chemical in meth damages the brain causing the person to hallucinate according to the vice president of medical services at A Renewed Mind, Julie Weinandy. People with meth addiction usually suffer from severe paranoia in which a person can no longer differentiate between “fantasy and reality”.



“PIKETON, Ohio – Robert Carter returned from four years in the Navy in 2003 to his hometown of Portsmouth a broken man. He had two to three nightmares each time he slept, many about his time while enlisted and the death of a friend and crewmate on the USS Nassau, Dwayne Williams.



“I watched Dwayne drown right in front of me [in the Atlantic Ocean],” Carter said. “I was told not to jump in because the Navy had people to do that job. I [see his death] every night and even through the day.” He struggled to leave his home, and he was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. In Portsmouth, he found a community ravaged by illegal pill mills and cheap, readily available methamphetamine.


Meth, a stimulant, gives users a powerful high that can keep them awake for days. That was the attraction for Carter. “I didn’t want to go to sleep; I was afraid of the nightmares,” Carter said. “So, I self-medicated. And then I became everyone’s nightmare.”



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