On Feb. 6, Kaylee Muthart dug her fingers into her eyes and pulled them out of their sockets. How did the South Carolina 20-year-old go from straight-A student and National Honor Society member to that point? She explains in a first-person piece in Cosmopolitan, charting her path from drinking alcohol and smoking pot at 18 to taking Xanax and then, finally, taking meth and ecstasy. Along the way she struggled with her mental health—she had a mental breakdown at one point and ultimately found out she has bipolar disorder—as well as other things, having left high school in eleventh grade after missing a lot of school due to work and a heart arrhythmia and, at 17, moving out of her mom's house. Ultimately she left her job, too, and lost her boyfriend and a number of close friends as she continued to struggle with drug abuse.
After initially avoiding harder drugs, she was smoking pot with an acquaintance at 19 when she felt a strange, euphoric high. She determined the pot had likely been laced with cocaine or meth, and at a particularly low point, she later decided to try meth and ecstasy. Her addiction progressed to the point that she was shooting meth "as often as I could," though she tried to stop multiple times. As her mom tried to get a court order to commit her so she could get treatment, Muthart took the largest dose of meth she ever had. She ended up feeling everyone in the world would die if she didn't make a sacrifice, thinking she was having "a personal religious calling." She gouged out her own eyes and fought the passers-by who held her down to keep her from doing more damage. Now, she'll never see again, but she's off illegal drugs, on medication, and in treatment. "It took losing my sight to get me back on the right path," she writes. Full piece here. (Read more drug abuse stories.)