I can't believe that not too long ago I used to think that "those rave kids" that got "high" on ecstasy were shooting themselves in the foot, giving in to a drug that could well kill them and that would bring about irreversible brain damage. I couldn't believe that things got to be that way, that some of us would rather take some pill, dance by themselves while drink water (wussies) all night long.

Then I stepped down from my self-built patronising pedestal and decided to check out the scene myself, and see if I could draw some conclusions after examining not one but both sides of the story. So I went out to a humongous nightclub and took an E one night.

I am not trying to convert anyone into drugs, and I am well aware of the risks associated with consuming illegal substances, and so are the thousands of people who have experimented with E (I assume this to be a considerable percentage of E2's noders). I think whether someone deicdes to take drugs or not is a personal decision, and I respect everone's stance on drugs. But to me the fact remains that there is risk in everything you do, daily. You board a plane, there's a risk it will blow up halfway to your destination. You eat out at a restaurant and there's a risk that some nonwelcome guests will make their way to the food you're eating... this discussion is well outside the scope of this writeup.

But it all made sense at six o'clock in the morning, when I left the nightclub. I felt envigorated, overwhelmed by a feeling of peace and quiet. Most importantly, it seemed that there was nothing wrong with the world or with my life, nothing at all. I was fully straight, could drive without the slightest problem. I could carry on a conversation with anyone about anything, and most importantly - I LOOKED normal and I FELT normal. I took a 5 hour nap, woke up at 12pm (an average weekend wake-up time for most of us) and felt great. No hangover, and most importantly none of that depression that is so often associated with the hangover (partly stemming from the "I can't believe I drank so much last night, what am I doing to myself? feeling.")

Then I thought to myself. What happened to the other people I know last night? They probably went out, drank 10 bottles of beer each - yelled obscenities at females, (probably pinched their butts too), did damage to their liver and brain (alcohol IS a toxic substance - let's not forget.) and woke up feeling like the most stupid person in the world, with a throbbing headache. Not to mention the countless wives and kids that got beat up that night, and the deaths that occured in alcohol-related car accidents. The drunks that I passed on the way out of the nightclub only further reaffirmed my notion that alcohol abuse is a far greater problem than ecstasy.

Oh yes, and I didn't experience hallucinations of flying dragons... the nightclub didn't turn into a hell-like pit.. I did NOT exhaust myself by dancing all night consuming 1000 calories (and 3 litres of water) every half hour, either. And I did not feel depressed today. What I found out after taking my first E was that just about all the things I heard about the drug are myths, not unlike the notion (for instance) that masturbation will make you grow hairs in the palm of your hand.

So there it is, an unbiased review from someone who used to drink anywhere from 10 to 15 standard drinks every friday and saturday night for the last five years - and is bloody sick and tired of it too. Whether to take it or not is up to the individual, but if you ever wondered what happens there's your answer.
I agree with most of domaindudu's write-up.
I agree that drug-taking is a Personal Choice.
I agree that Alcohol is a harmful substance.
I agree that there are a lot of myths related to drug use.


I do not totally agree with the comments abouts the risk in everything we do.

domaindudu: "But to me the fact remains that there is risk in everything you do, daily. You board a plane, there's a risk it will blow up halfway to your destination."

Then domaindudu goes on to say that that discussion is beyond the scope of the write-up, it may be beyond the scope of the individual write-up, but seeing as it has been brough up I will include it within the node.

The difference between boarding a plane and taking an illegal drug is that the plane has to be tested first.

I believe the organistion is called the FAA in the United States. Each aircraft, pilot, travel route component.. etc for each flight has been tested, and it must adhere to guidelines and standards. This is done to maximise the safety of the people flying.

The problem with Ecstasy and other designer drugs is that they are not tested. There is no organisation that monitors manufacturers, ingredients, or any other aspect of the drug. Unless the buyer sets up a lab and tests samples for themselves, they do not know what they are taking.

Alcohol is damaging, but the user knows ( within reason ) what it is they are drinking unless they are completely reckless in their drinking.

This is known because all commercially available alcohols are tested and re-tested, the only way to obtain untested alcohol would be to brew your own ( It is still known what is in it ) or obtain it from a non-legal source.

If someone chooses to have a drink of beer, they are not risking ingesting the kind of chemical cocktail that may exists within any of the little tablets.

I have written a writeup, 'A medical explanation of the effects of ecstasy on your body', which explains the medical effects of ecstasy on your body.

Based on the information in that writeup, here is my explanation of what domaindudu experienced.

To summarise domaindudu's experience, he took E for the first time, got high and felt good about the world, no hallucinations, slept, and then woke up feeling fine.

  • Feeling high - due to the flood of serotonin into his system - exactly what E is supposed to do.
  • No hallucinations - E does not directly cause hallucinations, it can only stimulate them. For E to 'cause' a hallucinations, it must be mixed with other drugs like LSD. Like a lot of drugs, you can never be exactly sure of what you are getting so you will never know if your next hit will cause hallucinations.
  • No depression - depression only sets in when you have completely depleted the serotonin levels in your brain. domaindudu may have only taken a light dose of E and consequently not drained his serotonin levels.

domaindudu, I don't wish you to take this as a personal attack, but your claim that 'all the things I heard about the drug are myths' is simply incorrect and I urge anyone thinking of trying ecstasy to make sure you really know the risks involved.

Actually, I saw a thing on 48 Hours all about ecstasy and the culture surrounding it. There was one bit about an organization called DanceSafe (I believe that's how it was spaced, might be Dance Safe though). Their (controversial) goal was not to prevent ravers from taking E, but rather to make sure they were taking just E, and not E plus many, often dangerous, impurities.

What they did was set up a booth at raves in major cities. Sometimes, the DJs would announce that it was available. Ravers could go up to the table, and hand over their pills (which they were told were pure E when they bought them) and the DanceSafe people would test them. They'd scratch off a small bit of dust from the pill, put it on a plate, and pour a chemical solution over it. Depending on what color the chemical turned, they could tell if A.) the pill contained ecstasy, and B.) the pill contained any other recognized drugs, such as speed, LSD, and some deadly ecstasy look-alikes.

I highly commend these people on the service they're doing. I agree with domaindudu that drugs are your own choice and I also respect that choice, whatever it is. However, people obviously aren't going to stop doing E just because the government tells them not to. If the government really wants to protect people from the "dangers" of E, they ought to endorse such organizations, since E has been shown to be very harmless if you take it in moderation (I heard if you do it only once every two weeks or so, it has very little chance of doing any real damage to your brain) and thus making sure it's free of impurities cuts down on 90% of the major risks involved.

DanceSafe is definitely a good thing.

A few little notes about this node:

DanceSafe does have a website, which is http://www.dancesafe.org. At the site, you can get in touch with local chapters, as well as find out what is in the pills that are floating around the country right now. You can even get your own testing kit for 25 dollars.

The medical side effects of ecstasy have indeed, been studied for some time with no conclusive answers to what it can do to the human body. Some studies have shown that habitual use, say almost every weekend, has led to the development of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders in many people, as well as prolonged states of depression. The medical theory is that by overloading the serotonin receptors in the brain, these receptors are essentially being snapped and broken by the drug. This theory, however, has not been proven to be true.

Other studies have shown that occasional use of the drug does not appear to have any side effects at all. And from conversations I have had with regular users, it would seem that the more often one takes ecstasy, the more they need to take to get a really good roll. This would seem to agree with what tobtoh stated in his node on the medical explanation of the effects of ecstasy on your body, regarding the retraction of receptors in your brain to try and slow your body's consumption of serotonin.

Finally, the effects of ecstasy are indeed very unique to any other drug you will find out there for one simple reason: It is the only drug that actually produces a heightened sense of empathy. MDMA was used for many years as a theraputic treatment for couples who were in therapy together because it allowed them to communicate more effectively and solve their problems. The other effects are to your nervous system. All five of your senses become much more sensitive to stimulation, which is why raves are always littered with piles upon piles of floortards massaging each other on the dance floor. The only reason ecstasy was made a controlled substance was merely because people began to notice that it was being used outside of its intended scope (i.e. parties instead of therapies).

I hope this information is of use to those of you with questions about MDMA.

One of the reasons the "e-culture" hates alcohol might have something to do with the fact that partykids (the colloquialism I'm most accustomed to for ravers) tend to get started way before they're even 18. This of course is not the case for everyone -- the first time I ever took any ecstacy I was 23 years old and had been drinking for years already. But the first rave I went to I noticed the dizzying number of 15 and 16-year olds, and this is very common in my experience.

I think the reason the partykids love the E and don't so much love the booze is simple to explain. It is much easier to go to a rave and dance all night to loud music under the influence of a little festively colored pill if you're under age than it is to go to a bar or club, get in, order drinks, and dance all night.

While we're throwing out "in my experience" type things regarding E, I would have to say that domaindudu had a rather common first roll. Subsequent rolls will often leave people a little sad and pooped the next day -- this state is called "cracked out" A fine little pill called 5-htp can help with this as it tends to rebuild serotonin stores in the brain. 5-htp is available at your local health food store or in the naturopathy aisle of your local yuppie-centric supermarket. You may wish to take it with food. My advice is to wait a good long time after the effects of the E have gone away and even wait until you're feeling cracked out. THEN take one or two 5-htp with some food and see how you feel.

Also, I have noticed that it is best not to use E more than once a month. And for chrissakes only take one pill. This lessens the afforementioned resultant OCD, and it also means you can get off from one pill again and again and again. As you meet more people in the "scene" (whatever that is, YMMV), you will likely meet a variety of people who just can't feel it off of any less than 2 pills. For the sake of economy, your sanity, and your overall sense of well-being, I would definitely recommend not taking E very often, and not taking much when you do take it.

NB. This node was originally titled : I now understand why "E"-culture loathes alcohol

OK, let's set the record straight here once and for all, or at least edit the node title.

"E"-culture does not loathe alcohol!

Speaking as someone who ingested this crap for nigh on 8 years, I can firmly say that "E"-culture or "Partykids" or "Ravers" or "Clubbers" (shudders) completely embrace alcohol. Rare is the clubber, in my experience, who does not drink while on E. For most people I know, the buzz of alcohol complements the buzz of the drugs. Saying that ravers "loathe" alcohol is just pure BS. Saying that ravers maybe drink less because they're off their tits the whole time and scared by crap they hear in the media (like leaflets that were distributed around Ireland years ago saying that Ravers were injecting heroin to come down off E) may be true. Saying that they loathe it the next day may be true because their heads are so mangled from the night before, but at the end of the day, the statement itself just isn't true.

I agree with sysop in that maybe the 15-16 year old kids who just take the drug alone and not alcohol is probably due to the fact that alcohol can be so hard to get in the US. This is not the case in Europe though. I also agree that DanceSafe is a good thing.

However, most of the writeups in this node do not even relate to the subject or title and should be moved/nuked.

Downvote this to hell if you must, but you have been grossly misinformed.

This statement is simply not true.

Goodnight.


Addendum
A noder who will remain anonymous writes: "I dont know about you, but at the clubs I go to, anyone who's drunk, as opposed to high, stands out a miles, and completely annoys everyone."

So listen up all you drunkards out there! There's gonna be some people in clubs who are "high". So when you enter the club, stay on your side of the white line. Whatever you do, don't stand out out or you will be ejected forcefully. You can annoy a few people if you like, but don't annoy everybody.

Grrr.

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