LSD Usage & TS Clearance

Hello all! Hoping to hear opinions on my current situation.

I am hitting my one year anniversary at my job (I am a Criminal Intelligence Analyst) in which I am undergoing a TS Clearance for. We are state funded, and assist narcotics investigations, so you must have a clearance to keep the job. The FBI is doing my Clearance and I was completely honest on my SF86 about my past drug usage that took place when I was in high school. I smoked weed randomly/ occasionally with friends for about two years. I also experimented with LSD 4-5 times (can’t remember exact number) during my senior year of high school. I disclosed all of this Information. I am now 23 years old, so it has been well over 5 years since I have done any drugs.

My supervisor informed me that I should be hearing back soon to schedule my clearance interview, and that he believed “no news is good news” but I’m obviously still very nervous. My drug use from high school is pretty humiliating especially given where I am currently working. Please let me know any thoughts and opinions, thank you!

The time since last use and your age at time of use are mitigating factors, along with your current employment situation and (presumably) change of life circumstances such that you no longer associate with drug users or find yourself in situations where they are being used.

On the other hand, since this is for a counternarcotics related position, it might still be an issue of concern.

I expect the investigator will want to go into this in detail and probably try to get you to admit to more drug usage… it isnt so much a reflection on you as an indication that a lot of people do not disclose everything on the SF-86 and do admit to more usage.

Hard to say for sure but it will probably be OK… although it will be pretty stressful until you get the final thumbs-up.

I could very well be an outlier, but psychedelic drug use during college almost a decade ago got me a suitability denial from an IC TS-SCI application. I was shocked they would be so conservative about it, so unfortunately bad news is indeed possible. Let us know!

I’m certainly not trying to push anything, my intent is just to show that they take prior drug use quite seriously, especially when it comes to psychedelics. My usage (marijuana, for the record) was indeed over the course of ten years, the last usage being seven years before my application, but LSD usage was more than a decade before. You are entirely correct that this was likely enough for them to make a suitability denial using the “whole person” concept, but I think we can all agree from these forums that seven years of no usage of MJ alone should not have been a real issue. Logically it was the addition of history with LSD that sunk me. No fault but my own of course, but fact remains that psychedelics are a far more sensitive category of drug use for security clearance, especially for law enforcement organizations, hence my comment.

I’m not gonna sweat it; they have their rules for a reason obviously, and I’m certainly not in a position to second guess their judgement. Obviously it kinda sucks personally but in the grand scheme of things I can only assume they know what they’re doing. As to the Op who initiated this series of posts, all anyone can really say is that here on the internet, you will hear both worst case and best scenarios, but at the end of the day your case will be decided based on the individual life you have lived, using the special brand of judgement that is the security clearance process. So hang in there, good luck, and keep us posted! We’re rooting for you regardless.