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The Secret Lives Of A Drug Dealing Mom, Soldier And Law Student

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Selling drugs for a living or for some extra cash may seem like a foreign concept to many people. But as a recent collection of anonymous posts on secret-sharing app Whisper suggests, dealing drugs may be a more common activity for a surprisingly diverse segment of the population. Turns out, someone you know may be selling.

Of course, given that Whisper is premised on anonymity, it's impossible to verify the statements or identities of these Whisper users. But anonymity can sometimes give people the freedom to be honest and open about often stigmatized subjects.

The reasons for selling drugs cited in these anonymous confessions are just as diverse as the purported backgrounds of the individuals. From paying for college, or providing for a child, to affording medicine for a sick family member, these posts suggest that selling illegal drugs isn't isolated to the regions, classes or cultures that are stereotypically associated with it. The posts also reveal the sometimes conflicted feelings the dealers have about drug use and dealing.

Although Americans' illegal drug preferences have changed over time, their spending has remained steady -- to the tune of about $100 billion a year -- and that's just in illegal heroin, marijuana, methamphetamine and cocaine, according to a recent study.

Recent U.S. Census data indicates that that figure is double what Americans spend on electronics and appliances annually, and about 10 times what they spend in bars.

During that same period, the U.S. government spent between $40 billion and $50 billion each year fighting the war on drugs.

With some idea of the money -- and the risks -- at stake, here is a glimpse into the secret lives of drug dealers:

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