It sickens me when an essential herb like Kratom is marketed as a legal high and vendors dub their products as “pimp grade” and whatnot. It is utter sabotage on those of us who are in dire need of an alternative to AMA / FDA endorsed drugs. We cannot let this be taken from us; we simply cannot do it. My story is a 500-paged memoir, but in short: In 2008 I lost my career and began having panic attacks. I reported them to a psychiatrist as per the prodding of a friend and went home labeled a bipolar II patient. After seven years on various combos of 35 psychotropic medications and nothing but declining health––5 new physical afflictions, psychiatric symptoms I’ve never had prior to drugs, 5 suicidal ER visits per year, 100 pound weight gain––and doctors not listening to my argument that the drugs were poisoning me even when I presented them with before and after medication photos (blatantly obvious I was perfectly healthy prior to drugs), I wound up diagnosed with medical emergency brain damage in April 2015. Besides benzos, which can be deadly if abruptly withdrawn, I quit all of my drugs cold turkey, including my abused 180mg amphetamine drugs, knowing I’d endure pain, but I had to keep in mind pain is not the equivalent of death. I’ve found a godsend, compassionate chiropractic neurologist who is healing me without drugs and allows me to make my own decisions about natural treatments he is not allowed to suggest, and he sees me 3x per week pro-bono since he is the only one in medicine who has acknowledged I’ve been raped by psychiatric drugs. I lost everything from my healthy, muscular physique to my ability to function and am bankrupt due to paying out of pocket for what I was told would help me. Now I’m a 37-year-old funded homeless person, meaning I am privileged to have parents who make ample money to support my livelihood. In 2014, my last year on drugs, I went to the ER in a suicidal state 5 times, 2 being police-mandated––dehumanizing. So far, in 2015, I have yet to have a hint of suicidal thinking and haven’t been to the ER at all and haven’t had the need to call suicide hotlines. I was evaluated by my city’s most reputable, $400-per-hour psychiatrists (since some psychiatrists are seemingly worth that much money since they know how to know another person exterior of themselves better than other psychiatrists?) after the withdrawal. The results? He said my 2008 diagnosis should have been seen as acute anxiety due to job loss and financial hardship. (Thanks, Mr. Obvious. Here’s 400 bucks.) So, I learned it costs over $100k out of pocket to get brain damage by psychiatric “care, ” and it costs $400 to have a psychiatrist tell me none of it was necessary. Pure logic, yeah? No refund. Not even an apology. Just cold-hearted people who have no empathy for others just sort of ignoring that they nearly killed me. Due to the PTSD of it all and the fibromyalgia-ish symptoms that have resulted from it all, I am in chronic pain and fatigue. I’m using Kratom ONLY to avoid going back to prescription drugs and intend to only use it until I fully recover. I use no substances of this nature for “fun” and frankly wish I did not need Kratom. I, in fact, quit using cannabis because it was no longer therapeutic since I used it to help me sleep due to how amped up the stimulants made me. Without Kratom, I’d have no choice but to return to my rapists who deny their drugs had anything to do with my “unexplained” chronic pain. Just please, whoever is reading this, know that the majority of Kratom users are genuine sufferers who, oftentimes, had been done wrong by conventional medicine. If you are a lawmaker or are in office of any sorts, consider taking a philanthropic look at this herb. Just protect our liberty to manage our health independently and not leave us forced to trust our bodies and brains in the hands of ignorant people with framed degrees on their walls (that give them the impression they are not doctors of medicine but doctors of divinity and omnipotence) who frankly have no idea what they are doing. Just accept it: natural remedies exist and not every health problem can be resolved by a subscription-based drug treatment program where we pay somebody to write us a permission slip to give to a pharmacist along with money in exchange for a drug that treats 1 condition but includes 100 risks in doing so. Keep in mind that Scurvy was terminated with vitamin C, that pellagra was cured by niacin, that beriberi was wiped out by thiamine, that rickets went away thanks to vitamin D, et cetera. We don’t need the latest advancements in pharmacology; we need what the earth provides. Thank you.