I have a particularly unique background and need some advice on what my chances are realistically of ever obtaining any type of security clearance (either secret or TS).
So, when I was a 16-year-old teenager (circa 2000), I received an eye injury that required a visit to the ER. There, doctors prescribed me narcotic painkillers (specifically Vicodin/hydrocodone), as the pain was unbearable. To make a long story short, I had a “Rush Limbaugh” situation, and became physical dependent on them, and was purchasing them from an associate at my office at the time.
After a couple of years of using narcotics – while also experimenting with other drugs – a friend of mine recommended a particular out-patient clinic he was familiar with. After a few months of waffling, I decided to enroll in their program, which basically simply consists of receiving your daily methadone along with a mandatory monthly UA drug test.
After a year or so, I strongly desired to “complete” the program (i.e., simply taper off and leave), and suboxone was a new alternative drug on the market (this was around 2004). I found a doctor who could prescribe it, but ended up having an extremely bad reaction to the suboxone, which scarred me deeply, and I resolved to stay on the usual methadone program out of fear of going through anything like what I had experienced before.
I stopped using all illicit drugs in 2005, and have never used again (not even once – as an aside, I also successfully and completely stopped smoking in 2007). Unfortunately, due to my fear of the physical complications and eventualities associated with tapering off of the medicine, combined with (what I can now see in retrospect) self-serving dissuasion and difficulties imposed by the for-profit clinic administrators themselves, I basically never left. I am now finally ready, and have formulated a comprehensive plan/schedule to tackle this problem, and am on track toward being out of this program by the end of the year.
However, I’m sure you can see where this is leading. Unfortunately, there are some fantastic job opportunities in my field, for which I would be well-qualified and suited for due to my education (I obtained my GED, BS, and Ph.D. degrees during those intervening years). Unfortunately, I know that obtaining a TS clearance is laughable; however, is there any possibility that at least a secret clearance would be obtainable, given my 14 years of complete sobriety (and with the monthly UA records to back it up)?
Any insight from those who are familiar with this process would be greatly appreciated. Thanks very much for any help.