The unseen face of meth use

What does a meth user look like? You’re probably not picturing Courtney — and that’s one reason why it’s so important to hear his story. In the 1990s and early 2000s, meth became the most widely used illicit drug among urban gay men. “Early characterizations of the meth problem in the gay community depicted the party boy or the middle-class white man as the prototype of the meth user,” says Dr. Perry Halkitis, professor of applied psychology, global public health, and medicine at New York University. Public health campaigns in the early 2000s targeted white gay meth users as a way of combating the AIDS epidemic. This, Halkitis believes, created a stigma among middle- and upper-class white gay men and pushed the drug underground in the gay community. And while Halkitis says me

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