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Giving up caffeine: the bastard caffeine withdrawal


For some reason that I can’t remember I decided to give up caffeine. I’d been gently reducing my caffeine intake for a while, thinking that regular cups of coffee and tea might be causing my nocturnal fidgets. But then I stopped completely, and experienced nine days of constant headache. A buzzing, rumbling cancer of a headache.


Withdrawing from caffeine made me think (again) about society’s mixed-up thinking on drugs. Our society thinks it quite okay for nearly every adult human to be completely addicted to a powerful stimulant. A powerful stimulant that gives you a nine-day headache when you stop taking it. And when all of those wired adults want to wind down, our society advises a powerful depressant drug, drunk in great glassfuls. Have a few beers, a bottle of wine or some gin and let your brain melt into your knickers.

We can medicate our moods with stimulants and depressants of one kind, but not another. Addicts of one kind are called you and me, but addicts of another kind are called junkies and criminals. It’s just bloody odd.

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