FRASER, Mich. (WXYZ) - Ethan Steiner knows from personal experience the addictive qualities of synthetic marijuana.
The 18-year-old grew up in Hartland. He began smoking marijuana at the age of 15 and switched to K2 to get around his Mother's drug tests. In no time he was addicted.
"K2 is very powerful and sudden and its hits you so fast," Steiner said. "It's very aggressive and I just loved the way it felt."
Steiner said he was smoking three and a half grams of the chemically treated substance a day.
"It was no longer fun for me, it was something I had to do because I wasn't okay with myself, so I had to numb my mind with drugs," he said.
Steiner says he supports efforts in Macomb County and number of local municipalities to have the drugs removed and banned.
"I don't think people see it for what it truly is and how big a problem it is," Steiner said. "I don't want anyone to go through what I had to go through. I think we need to put a stop to it for sure."
Steiner's second attempt at rehab is going well. Clean for four-and-a-half months, he attends daily recovery meetings while staying with a group of men at a Sober Living Home in Fraser.
At least one death locally has been blamed on K2. Users of the drug have also been involved in several recent violent crimes, including the murder of Robert Cipiriano.
"I always remind myself that I'm one of the lucky ones and I'm lucky that I did not die from K2 or kill my family or act out in an aggressive way," said Steiner.
Steiner has reached out to teens at schools on behalf of Families Against Narcotics (FAN). He has plans to enroll for fall classes at Macomb Community College as he works to turn his life around.