Sleep, smoke, buy, steal, smoke...

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Steve, 20, steals toiletries to fund his heroin habit

"MY MUM wakes me up at eight. I've only had two hours' sleep but manage to drag myself up out of bed. I don't usually smoke [heroin] first thing in the morning, I like to try and eat something first. Today I have an iced doughnut from the bakers on the way to work.

"I work for a courier company and arrive looking like a zombie. I think my boss suspects I'm on drugs. I get through the morning feeling spaced out and on my lunch break I go back to the estate where I live to get some money. I visit my friends' mums to sell them toiletries that I've stolen from Boots. I sell five moisturisers and make pounds 15. I take orders for things that they want, so I can get them later. They all know what I'm spending the money on.

"I call my dealer and buy a pounds 20 bag on the way back to work. I'm sent out on a delivery and stop off and smoke most of the heroin on the foil. I feel much better, not as shaky as before. I get back to work and my boss is really angry. He wants to know why I have taken two hours for one short run.

"On the way home from work I go into Boots and Sainsbury's to steal some more things to sell. I get home, smoke the last of what's left before falling asleep until about nine. I wake up and find my mum's made me some food. My mum knows that I take heroin now. I try to eat a bit, but it's difficult. If I eat too much, I usually bring it up when I smoke.

"I go back round the flats to sell some more stuff and meet up with my dealer again. I buy another pounds 20 bag. On my estate, everyone is on it. I used to do burglaries here but I realised that it's not right - everyone is in the same category as me. If I wanted to do a burglary now, I'd go up Hampstead or somewhere, where there is money.

"I go to one of my mate's houses and stay up smoking, playing the computer and listening to music until about six in the morning.

"I don't think that I'm going to be able to keep the job going for long; my boss is getting pissed off that I'm always late. I'd like to come off this stuff. I've been in prison four times, come out clean and always ended up back on it."