More and more homeless people living on the streets are young people whose lives have been destroyed by prescription drugs. Photo original source unknown.

by Brian Shilhavy
Editor, Health Impact News

I met Luke online in October of 2022, when he emailed me and told me his story of how he had been “a homeless schizophrenic drug addict in LA, multiple overdoses, multiple suicide attempts, and tied down by every vice one could possibly imagine” just 8 months before he emailed me, and that now “Through Christ, in a matter of 8 months, I am off all illicit drugs as well as all medications, holding a job, and living a thriving life I never thought possible.”

Like Abdulah, a young man who lives in a Muslim country whose story we recently published, Luke discovered that he could know Jesus without the help hindrance of Christianity and the Corporate Church, by reading the Bible for himself and going directly to God.

Luke explains how his downward spiral in life began when he was 8 years old and diagnosed with ADHD, and put on the drug Adderall.

Luke is a Millennial, and not only did Jesus Christ rescue him from his drug addictions, but Luke explains how Jesus also gave him the power to overcome his addiction to being “terminally online.” He ditched his “smart” phone and now only carries a flip phone, and he tells me that he only carries that around because his job requires that he have one.

ZeroHedge News published an article this week (originally published on Epoch Times, but probably with a paywall) titled: “The Silent Epidemic Eating Away Americans’ Minds“.


Excessive use of screens has become an epidemic silently eroding lives with little resistance. Gallup’s 2012 survey found that around 60 percent of young adults admit to spending too much of their time on the internet; a subsequent survey estimated that 83 percent of smartphone users say they keep their phone near them “almost all the time during their waking hours.”

Screens can overstimulate our brains, resulting in a perpetual, highly stressed, fight-or-flight state. This then makes us prone to meltdowns, depression, and anxiety when even minor changes in the environment occur.

Between 2005 and 2012, the change in rates of depressive episodes in teens aged 12 to 17 barely exceeded 1 percent. However, between 2012 and 2017, there was an almost 4 percent increase.

Additionally, fewer teenagers are going outside or reading books, while their time on social media and the internet is dramatically surging.

In 2008, psychotherapist Tom Kersting, who worked as a school counselor for 25 years, saw a rise in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) diagnoses in children over age 8.

ADHD tends to be detected in early childhood after a child starts school. However, he has witnessed increasingly delayed diagnoses in teenagers and adults. While it could be possible that some of these teens were missed by clinicians when they were young, Mr. Kersting suspects that some developed symptoms of ADHD due to screen use.

Around 2012, when 30 percent of teenagers had a smartphone, he started to see rebellious behavior and anxiety disorders becoming more common among children. Young adults and teenagers growing up now also tend to be more antisocial and have reduced emotional resilience, which may be related to insufficient in-person socializing due to spending most of their time behind screens.

“It’s not just the amount of time spent in the cyber world,” Mr. Kersting told The Epoch Times, “but also what they missed out on: outside play and social learning.”

During the pandemic, adolescents’ screen time doubled. (Full article.)

Another article published this week by The Guardian highlighted new studies showing that children “learn better on paper, not screens.” See:

A groundbreaking study shows kids learn better on paper, not screens. Now what?


The nationwide collapse in reading scores among American youth has lately captured the attention – if not the concern – of headline writers, educators and government bureaucrats.

The Department of Education’s most recent survey, released in June, was certainly sensational: it found that text comprehension skills of 13-year-olds had declined an average of four points since the Covid-affected school year of 2019-2020, and more alarmingly that the average drop was seven points compared with the 2012 figure. The results for the worst-performing students fell below the reading skill level recorded in 1971, when the first national study was conducted.

Unsurprisingly, the blame for this dismal news has been assigned by politicians to the easiest, more obvious targets – Covid-19 and the resultant lockdown. Remote learning was bad for students, according to Biden administration officials, so the pandemic must be the chief villain. Conservatives don’t disagree, but they prefer to blame the teachers’ unions for encouraging their members to teach remotely – for them a greater villain than Covid is the president of the American Federation of Teachers, Randi Weingarten, a powerful Democrat who lobbied successfully to prolong school shutdowns.

Neither the bureaucrats nor the critics of the teachers’ union are wrong, of course. Common sense tells us that a child alone in her bedroom, staring at the image of a teacher on a computer screen (with a smartphone close at hand but hidden from the teacher’s view), is not fully focused on learning.

But while everyone bemoans the lockdown, there’s been curiously little discussion in this debate about the physical object most children use to read, which, starting long before the arrival of Covid, has increasingly been an illuminated screen displaying pixelated type instead of a printed or photocopied text. What if the principal culprit behind the fall of middle-school literacy is neither a virus, nor a union leader, nor “remote learning”? (Full article.)

I have asked Luke to write out his story, in the hope and belief that his experiences can provide hope to others who have been damaged by Big Pharma and the online lifestyle, and that one does NOT need to become a Christian or join a Corporate Church to meet Jesus.

A Terminally Online Millennial Whose Life Spun Out of Control

by Luke

I was born to into a two-parent household in the mid 90’s, in a busy suburban neighborhood, outside of a busy east coast city. My parents were both involved in medicine, and I never had a lack of anything which I desired. On Christmas morning I couldn’t even see the bottom half of the tree.

Spiritually speaking, I was well versed in the practices of fair-weather Christianity, attending church on Christmas eve, Easter, and maybe a few other choice occasions when convenient. I remember being confirmed, although faith took a back seat (or no seat) in my life.

It was the early 2000’s, and Runescape and Newgrounds ruled my life.

Because I enjoyed having having fun with friends rather than studying math, a child psychologist determined that I had ADHD, and I was placed on Adderall around the age of 8.

This led to me developing motor tics, causing me to isolate, as I was very embarrassed being unable to control certain movements like the shaking of my head and rolling my eyes compulsively.

It was not the end of me socially, but I  found myself gravitating more towards video games, and what has now come to be known as a terminally online lifestyle.

Learning How to Abuse Prescription Drugs

As I started my 8th grade year, I discovered the abuse potential of my medication, and this abuse became the normal pattern for the rest of my schooling and adult life. My motor tics and budding interest in drugs, coupled with niche interests and extremely loose parenting, had essentially solidified my pathway as the druggy kid/class clown in high school.

Humor and self deprecation was a major coping mechanism of mine. By my sophomore year I was the living embodiment of the sad clown archetype, and my only interests were drugs, 4chan, and video games.

Not once at this point in my life had I begun to question the spiritual realm. I thought God was a man-made concept, invented to control stupid people *tips fedora.

While I hated school, I excelled in my studies through abusing my stimulant medication, and was able to secure a scholarship to my university of choice, although I only really applied to appease my parents.

I remember begging them to let me skip college and become a pizza delivery man (this should say something about the extent of my personal ambitions at the time).

I begrudgingly began my endeavor into the academic realm with rip roaring addiction problems, an Xbox 360, and an American Express platinum card in my name, but attached to my father’s bank account for “emergencies only”.

Needless to say things went poorly.

The only thing I had to show for my entire first semester of college was a cell phone video of me beating the song “through the fire and flames” by Dragon Force on expert level in Guitar Hero III (which was honestly a pretty impressive feat, just utterly worthless), a modest speedrun of Dark Souls (impressive but worthless), and a misdemeanor (just worthless).

I may not have been able to see the problem with being a terminally online spoiled brat at the time, but now I realize many of my issues were captured by the G. Michael Hopf quote: “Hard times create strong men, strong men create good times, good times create weak men, and weak men create hard times.” (I know this quote is a meme but it is very true).

My childhood and early adulthood was the living embodiment of “good times”: Lots of stuff, nice school, nice vacations, and very little consequences for my actions.

I just sat on my behind, eating chips (RIP to the biscuits and gravy flavored Lays) and mentally emulated other peoples’ struggles through the consumption of media.

The greatest battles of my life were fought with my thumbs, sitting behind a screen. As a result, I was an extremely weak individual.

The “South Florida Shuffle” – Taking “Good” Pharmaceutical Drugs to get off “Bad” Non-pharmaceutical Drugs

After flunking out of college I was placed into rehab with hopes to solve my problems with addiction. This was to begin a process accurately coined as the South Florida Shuffle (rehab, then halfway house, then homeless, then hospital, then back to rehab, then halfway house, then homeless again, another hospital, repeat Ad infinitum).

Sometimes I drew a wild card where I got to go to jail. It was an insurance funded cross-country adventure. I went through about 15 “shuffles” in 8 years.

I don’t have much to say about what the rehabs taught me, because none of it really works. It was a process involving taking “good” pharmaceutical drugs to get off “bad” non-pharmaceutical drugs.

Ironically, 90% of people on the street and in rehab are only there because of pharmaceutical drugs in the first place (go ask your local homeless guy and confirm my statistic for yourself!). The therapists helped us to quit thinking about drugs by having 4-5 one-hour long classes a day where we got to talk about drugs.

Then in between the groups we got to smoke cigarettes and talk about all the fun times we had doing drugs.

The success rate of rehab is estimated around 5% for some reason, go figure. While the shuffle did not teach me much of anything besides how to be a master spades player, it did shatter my preconceived notions of life which I had developed during my time of childhood safety within the upper middle class suburban womb.

I was exposed to many people who came from very poor financial backgrounds, and who had grown up in very hostile environments.

My private school education had passively influenced me to view people from this walk of life very negatively. But when you spend a month stuck with the same group of people, you eventually start talking to them.

People are People no Matter Where they Come From

I quickly discovered that people are people, no matter where they come from. The same people that my friends would have judged for their skin color or way of life, taught me far more about what it meant to stand up for myself and be a man than any of the adults in my childhood.

I also came to find that problems do not discriminate. Whether you are rich, poor, black or white, problems abound.

The only difference is that the more affluent addicts had far greater tools at their disposal to solve those problems. The wealth and comfort afforded to me through my parents and upbringing was the very thing killing me. It is easy to keep doing drugs when you know insurance will bankroll another trip to rehab.

It’s even easier when mommy and daddy will bankroll another lawyer, another phone, another psychiatrist, another therapist, another place to live, or another “fresh start”.

Consequences meant very little when I never had to face them.

Increased Addictions and Suicide Attempts

As the years progressed, the addictions progressed. Periods of addiction and homelessness would be interspersed with more rehab visits and occasional suicide attempts. I hung myself in a motel only to injure my trachea.

I locked myself in the bathroom while digging into my wrist with a broken coffee mug just trying to do as much damage as possible to kill myself by blood loss before I was found. I had a handful of intentional overdoses that left me with pneumonia from aspiration.

I went through a period of time where I was losing my eyesight after taking nearly 1500 mg of Benadryl a day just to slowly poison myself. I would constantly give myself serotonin syndrome, and often thought my heart was going to explode on multiple occasions.

I suffered acute renal failure and peed blood multiple times. I would take as many drugs as I could in hopes of never waking up, only to be furious when I eventually did. The only friends I had by this point were online strangers on forum boards who I passively observed.

Homeless and Surviving on the Streets of LA

Los Angeles. Image source.

Eventually my parents couldn’t take the pain of being part of my life. After a trip to yet another rehab in LA, I was cut off: Insurance, money, everything.

I thought I would call their bluff, and leave the rehab, so I did.

They were not bluffing.

This started yet another period of homelessness, but this time there were no parents to bail me out.

I would like to say, without my fellow man teaching me how to survive on the streets, and the Lord watching over me, I would not have been able to survive as long as I did.

Through a series of events I found myself in a tent city off the LA river, where kind, albeit troubled, folks taught me how to survive with only the clothes on my back. They took me in and cared for me with a generosity and kindness of which I had never before experienced.

They fitted me with an old tent they found laying around. They showed me how to make money flying a sign and collecting cans, how to use food banks, how to open the pipes of public fountains to fill water jugs, how to barter, how to stay warm at night, how to survive off of what other people have simply thrown away, how to keep myself clean living among sand and filth (hint: you really can’t), how to repair what I have rather than seek out something new, and what is and isn’t essential when it comes to surviving.

It was a communal way of living where each person relied on one another for safety and survival. I learned more in those 6 months than I had in over 2 decades of life. They also showed me how to do a lot of horrible things, that I must answer for when I die and go to judgment.

Eventually I was placed in contact with a crisis worker who was able to get me placed into a shelter. I didn’t stay sober, but I remember being very surprised to see just how much the COVID stuff had grown. The brunt of the fear mongering was lost on me, because I very rarely had a phone or television after mid 2019.

Most of the people at my campsite only knew about COVID because they had to start wearing masks to get into stores.

Very few, if any, homeless I knew took the vaccine.

Ironically, none of us ever got “COVID” despite living in absolute filth, never washing our hands, and sharing practically everything.

Eventually I was kicked out of the shelter for violating COVID protocol (like staying out too late; COVID gets really contagious after 9 p.m.) and placed into a state-run rehab.

It wasn’t like the luxurious BnB rehabs I had been to in the past. It was very strict and regimented, no breakfast buffet and no yoga classes.

A lot of people in this place were facing serious prison time, and were hoping to get their sentences lowered by completing the program. Even as down and out as I was, these people’s situations hammered in the reality of the unbelievably fortunate upbringing I had been gifted.

Getting Off Psych Drugs

Upon arriving at the rehab, I made the decision to not go back on mental health medications. I wanted to be completely free of drugs. The anxiety was overwhelming, but for the first time since my childhood, I wasn’t on ANY DRUGS.

Regardless, I was an absolute train wreck mess both mentally and physically. All I had to my name was a button down shirt, a pair of pants held together with staples and a weird rope I found, and a pair of shoes old enough to vote.

Finally after being off ALL drugs, I found that my mental capacities came back.

I began asking all sorts of spiritual questions (there was a shared computer in the commons area). Any time that thing was open, I would get on there and read! I looked for anything I could consume about spirituality.

Most of what I read was straight bologna, but I was hungry for answers!

For example, I tried “sun gazing” to decalcify my pineal gland and give me energy, which practically left me blind for 3 days (0/10 not recommended).

However, I did become interested in the world of natural health (10/10 highly recommended), and started pursuing natural options for mitigating the mental and physical repercussions of my addiction, an endeavor that proved extremely fruitful.

Meeting Jesus Christ After Getting Hit by a Car

At one point in my stay, probably after word spread that the weird white kid was skipping dinner to stare at the sun, another patient asked me why I wouldn’t just try Jesus.

I told him that, while I wished the Bible and Jesus were true, I knew it was all made up by the Catholic Church to control mankind.

Unlike him, I was a true disciple of science – unwilling to shower more than once a week, staring at the sun for food, like a plant! (Oh blind fool! Literally!)

I do remember telling him later, that if the biblical account of Jesus was actually true, I would give my life over to him in a heartbeat, because my biggest hurdle was finding a way to BELIEVE.

I think that was all Jesus needed to hear to get his foot in the door, and man, he kicked it wide open: Not with his foot, but with a Nissan Altima.

He sent me hurtling by allowing me to be run over the day after I was discharged from rehab. My injuries were bad enough that I was bedridden for the next 4 months.

My parents graciously, but begrudgingly, let me back into their home on the east coast to recover.

Upon arriving back at home, I was afforded the luxury of my old laptop and unlimited time to continue my research into anything and everything that peaked my interests. So I hit the digital streets and began digging.

Over the course of 3 months I spent every waking hour researching holistic alternatives to mental health and addiction treatment, as well as trying to figure out what in the world was going on in… well… the world. I was habitually under a rock in my addiction.

One of the digging points that caught my attention was anything related to COVID.

One can only search the words “COVID vaccine” on Yandex so many times before they bump into a Health Impact News article. I took an immediate interest due to the thoroughness of the articles.

The writing involving the satanic roots of medicine initially caught my interest, because I felt as though I had been taken advantage of by the medical system since a very young age and into my adulthood.

It also was void of any interdenominational slap fighting that seemed to plague most of the Internet I had been exposed to thus far.

Although I had since grown away from my “oh so enlightened” perspective of thinking the Bible was made up, I couldn’t quite make sense of how Jesus Christ fit into the story of the world.

I was still stuck on 4chan posts which seemed to answer a lot of my questions, but could never quite piece the whole picture together for me.

Eventually I came across the Altiyan Childs exposé on freemasonry.

OH MY WORD! I don’t think I ever have, or ever will again, experience such cognitive dissonance.

I had heard about freemasonry and secret societies prior to the video, but I didn’t think much of them. I used to go to the Knights of Columbus with my parents growing up, but I would just play Sega Bass Fishing while everyone ate hushpuppies and got drunk around a bar that had the picture of the pope pinned up behind the bottles.

I am almost positive I watched the entire Altiyan Childs video in one sitting, and then proceeded to send the video to every single person in my contact list.

The salvation aspect of the video did not sink in immediately. I was more distracted by the fact that there was a secret agenda to control the nations.

I was also freaked out because I knew a lot of my family members were involved in freemasonry, eastern star, and even government. I still honestly get pretty weirded out by this fact.

I don’t think the reality of what I saw truly set in till about 2 days later.

One evening while sitting in my basement (I am pretty sure it was July 11th as I remember getting a free Slurpee at 711 earlier in the day), I could no longer ignore the truth of how Jesus Christ fit into the whole history of the world and from that moment on, I was a believer.

Upon the realization and acceptance, a wave of warmth and light poured over me, and for the first time in my entire life, things made sense, and I felt as if everything was going to be alright. This is not to say that everything in my life was alright from that point on.

Since that moment, life has been a constant battle of strengthening myself through scripture, and sanctifying myself from the ways of this world.

But now, I have the Holy Spirit to guide me towards truth.

Not even that slowly but surely, Jesus Christ transformed my life, healing me mentally, physically, and spiritually in such a way that I had never known to be possible. My sustained injuries began to improve, my “bipolar disorder” that plagued me most of my adult years subsided, and my tendency to sin became a repulsion to sin (this does not mean I stopped sinning).

Confusion Regarding Denominations and “Church”

One of my earliest difficulties upon being saved came from trying to figure out how to make sense of all the various denominations and churches. I remember doing all kinds of research on the subject. The number of denominations along with the history and practices surrounding them was overwhelming.

It seemed with every denomination came a whole set of extra-biblical beliefs that simply just did not make any sense at the time (and still don’t make sense to this day).

Any forum discussion on the topic simply devolved to interdenominational slap fighting. All the local churches I tried employed aggressive mall-kiosk-perfume-salesmen-tactics in order to increase membership.

People would tell me how their church “isn’t like other churches”, only for me to attend and find out that it was exactly like every other church at its core.

Someone even told me to watch Rick Warren, to which I did, and promptly created the following meme and sent it to them:

They did not find this as funny as I did.

Then I found the article: Fact Check: “Christianity” and the Christian Religion is NOT Found in the Bible – The Person Jesus Christ Is.

This was a very helpful article to read at that point in my salvation. My research into denominations had caused more confusion than clarity, and this article helped to provide the explanation as to why.

Now that I have had the time to read through the Bible in its entirety, I have the clarity to see these things for myself through scripture.

I don’t wish to just paraphrase points made in that article, so if you are having a difficult time with this matter, please just check it out!

My New Life in Jesus Christ – Choosing the Difficult Path and the Blessings that Follow

While being a follower of Jesus Christ has many struggles, the Lord has also blessed me with many gifts. I went from homeless and unemployed, to holding full-time employment for the last year and a half.

Even in my employment, I was able to go from bussing tables, to operating heavy machinery. I pay for an apartment, car, and food. I have the ability to save money and plan out decisions on my finances, a reality I had never thought possible.

My family and friends think I am absolutely crazy, but the facts speak for themselves, I am thriving.

Despite my injuries, my physical health is great and I run around like I never had been injured in the first place. I am able to show up for the people in my life, as well as the people in my community and help them in any way I can.

Life Without a “Smart” Phone

Now that I am so busy I find it difficult if not impossible to spend my free time playing video games and scrolling memes for hours on end.

My biggest piece of advice would be to get rid of the smartphones, and heavily police your own online activity.

I am talking about deleting all social media, no adult sites, etc. It is very easy to pretend like what we do online just doesn’t even exist, but I can say from experience that all these online vices had greater effects on me than I ever realized.

Try setting aside a certain amount of time each day to use the Internet. I went and purchased a flip phone to ensure there was no temptation to look at my phone ten million times a day.

After going on a year with no smartphone, it has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. I bring an E-reader with me for long periods of downtime, that way if I want to kill some time it will actually sharpen my brain rather than weaken it.

There are all kinds of resources dedicated to the idea of “dumbing down” and I would 1000% recommend giving it a shot.

If you are terminally online like I was, and you love looking to forum boards to tickle your brain with the next big conspiracy, I will save you precious time, because at the end of every conspiracy journey rests the Lord Jesus Christ, along with the loving grace and mercy that only He can provide. If you are drawn to these kinds of websites, drawn to the truth, the Lord is calling you.

Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me. (Revelations 3:20)

Looking back, Jesus was knocking at my door many times before He had to knock on it with a mid-size sedan.

But He had to, because I kept choosing to ignore the knocking!

If you feel as though you are being called, if you feel as if your life has many “coincidences” and “idiosyncrasies” that you simply cannot explain, if you feel an underlying sense of shame that you simply cannot shake, I implore you with all my heart to reach out to the Lord, and ask Him to reveal Himself.

“So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Luke 11:9-10.)

Jesus Christ sees your pain, and the efforts which you go through to dig for the truth. He loves your fervent curiosity.

If the “science” or the “history” does not make sense to you, ask Him, and he will show you how it makes sense.

I can’t convince anyone of anything in just a simple testimony, you must discover it for yourself!

Most importantly, you don’t have to be a perfect person to find Christ. In fact, just the opposite.

Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick.” (Luke 5:31.)

If God can save a foolish disgusting derelict such as myself, who fervently denied the existence of Christ for the good majority of my life, there is not one person on earth who is “too far gone”.

“I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” (Luke 5:32.)

I have lived an unbelievably wicked and selfish life, but since I began to repent and believe, God has transformed me into a man that neither I, nor anyone in my life, thought was possible. Through the supernatural healing capabilities of Christ, I can confidently say I am free to live my life away from the vices of my past, which kept me in perpetual slavery.

Life is no longer a meaningless hum void of purpose, but a colorful array of emotions and experiences, driven by a fervent desire to help my fellow man.

My mornings no longer begin with the brisk bite of impending doom, but with confidence, because I know I have the tools at my disposal to conquer the tasks in front of me.

I even quit using forum boards and spending all day looking at memes (if that is not a true miracle, I don’t know what is!).

I hope someone was able to find something of benefit in my story.

Thank you, and God Bless.