Thursday, March 31, 2016

Chemsex - A mild single X rating

My life would be much poorer if not for BBC podcasts, and to an extent Our ABC podcasts.

On the way home tonight I listened to two brief podcasts, one about the Tenerife air disaster in 1977 and the other about a Jew called Kasztner in Hungary in WWII who saved some Jews but maybe not enough. It was complicated.

The BBC does not shy away from modern manners and lives, so it is with interest that I will listen to this podcast about Chemsex. For years I have seen been told about ads on gay hook up sites that say 'chem friendly'. I had a friend who ended up in hospital after Sydney's Mardi Gras where he stayed awake for three days and to speak frankly, had lots of sex. Effectively, taking lots of drugs over a couple of days and exhausting himself with sex put him in hospital. He is not the type of person to have regrets though.

Here is a transcript of the lead in to podcast. As I have not heard the podcast yet, I can't really give an opinion but I do confess in the past to perhaps indulging in mind altering substances. While I am of the age to disapprove of drugs, what people who never have taken drugs need to understand is that they can give a very good feeling. Ecstasy was called the love drug for good reasons. You just loved. I don't know that I like these modern drugs though; GBH, pure speed and meths.  A workmate just the day I am writing this told me of the many drugs he has taken and then one day, he had a bad experience and it all just went so wrong and he left it all behind. But then he said, when I am on holidays, I buy a big bag of coke and hoof it up quickly so the effects are gone by the time I have to go back to work. Victor may remember my post about the blond Greek guy at work who deliberately brushed my arm. Subsequently he has married and has a daughter. Finally at the age of about 40 his mother has stopped nagging him about getting married and giving her a grandchild.

Chemsex

In recent years a new, extreme sub-culture of sex and drugs has become a way of life for a growing minority of gay men. The so-called chemsex scene involves an unholy (unholy or holy?) trinity of drugs – Mephedrone, GHB/GBL and Crystal Meth – and together they can keep men awake for days. These relatively new drugs are taken to enhance one thing in particular - sex. Mobeen Azar travels to San Francisco - one of the first cities to see the...

17 comments:

  1. I find drugs scary.

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    1. Certainly can be Sandra, but we always have to remember that there are good feel good reasons that people take them.

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    2. I'd say it's only a "feel good" reason until they're addicted, then it would be more of a hopeless "I have to have it" feeling.

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  2. What can I say drugs are a ride in a fast car where you are not the driver and you can't get out until the ride is over.
    Merle.................

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    1. That's a very good analogy, Merle.

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  3. Tricky. I saw a lot of the drug culture while at college. I saw people having lots of fun, and I lost some to drugs. I did indulge in marijuana (and yes I inhaled) but developed an intolerance. The other drugs I left alone. And, while I have lost friends to illicit drugs, I have also effectively lost friends and family to the legal ones...

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    1. EC, no doubt legal drugs are more of a problem to society than illegal drugs.

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  4. I think the younger gay men have never experienced the horrors of the AIDS era when so many friends died so quickly. Drugged up like this responsibilities go out the window so back comes the patterns of no condoms, multiple partners, immune systems shot and increased STDs but it's okay, nobody dies from AIDs these days. Well you do die but it's not quick and involves living with a regime of drugs that aren't party pretty. I had to do a lot of research on HIV and I still feel for all those men, most of whom didn't know they had the virus until it became full blown AIDs and the dying was horrible. But as you said Andrew, most are not the type to have regrets so let's hope that 'chemsex' remains a subculture and doesn't go mainstream.

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    1. Very perceptive Jah Teh. That is exactly what happens. We lost of number of friends in the 90s and it was not pretty.

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  5. I've never taken illegal drugs, but I can understand the attraction and here's why. In hospital after major surgery I was given morphine to control the pain, which was rather horrendous until the morphine kicked in. That wonderful, pain-free floaty feeling is probably one reason people get addicted to heroin, morphine's cousin.
    Years later, after not having taken any pain killers for a very long time, I had painful aching from varicose veins and I know that aspirin thins the blood, so dissolved two aspirin in water then drank it. About twenty minutes later I felt the blood in my arms fizzing as the aspirin made it into the bloodstream. It was a fantastic feeling! But I've never felt it again, although I do still take aspirin sometimes to ease the aching. Now that I'm not working, I am more often able to take time out to put my feet up instead.

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    1. That's interesting about your aspirin experience, River. I remember in school days it was said that if you took aspirin and washed it down with Coke, you would get an effect. Or was the aspirin put in the in the Coke.

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  6. Never taken or used, had any of those drugs.
    I still can't understand why people do Andrew. You say for 'sex'. Can't they learn to relax and enjoy and have the same feelings without drugs. I know what I mean, I can say but better not! :)

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    1. Margaret, I really am not talking from muc experience now, but I think it is enhancement of whatever someone is experiencing, be it sex or dancing in a club. The harder stuff can give a lot of stamina. The drug scourge will only be reduced if we understand that it can be a good experience, temporarily. Addiction and overuse is bad. Some become addicted to tobacco, some to alcohol, some to legal prescribed drugs and some to illegal drugs. It is not like you to hold back. I don't mind if you don't hold back.

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  7. And now we're having a resurgence of HIV, particularly mid-country. Half of a small town here in Indiana have been infected; brings back nightmares of the bad old days.

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    1. How extraordinary, Cranky. The drugs are good now, but with a lack of awareness, are they affordable? A 'friend' told me that lots of gay porn is now non condom. Again, I understand the attraction of being 'impregnated', but it is really not a good idea and the message of common sense and condom use has died.

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  8. Such interesting comments above Andrew. Can you believe in the small town I grew up in the middle of Africa drugs were freely available but I was always too afraid of getting 'hooked' .. I don't like the idea of being dependent on anything :) I still associate drug taking with low self-esteem, a wee bit sad really!

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    1. I don't know about low self esteem Grace, but I think there is something missing in some peoples lives, or brain chemicals not working properly, that causes people to take drugs.

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