Couples Therapy

I have often talked about my advocacy for using MDMA* as a therapeutic assist for individuals facing PTSD, as well as a way for romantic couples to keep communication open and maintain a strong love for each other. A while back my partner and I got to experience something else when we had a night “rolling” with another couple who are our friends. I found this experience to be incredibly positive and I hope to relive it again with that couple and others that we know.

There is a false stereotype that MDMA is some sort of “sex drug”. In reality, it opens doors of communication and fosters love and trust between those involved. Due to the nature of the relationship of all involved the only sexual contact occurred between significant others and did so in a fairly private manner. Instead, the whole experience was a lot of discussions about love, life, relationships, and how much we appreciated each other. We  all got to discuss how we face the problems in our lives and what we hope for in the future. We were also able to find out how another couple deals with difficulties in relationship types (both being kind of mixed poly/mono couples). People who love each other should be free to discuss anything openly, but sadly social barriers and our past often prevent that. MDMA helps open that up.

Moving forward I certainly hope we have more experiences like this. With all things pre-intoxicated discussions are key. While I may be comfortable with things like being naked in front of friends, giving/receiving massages, having sex while others are in the room, or even sexual intimacy with others it is important to get these things on the table beforehand when everyone is completely sober… if something comes up of interest during a roll you can always discuss it the next day and save it for another time. It is better to guarantee enthusiastic consent and interest in an activity than risk harming a person or relationship. Basically, err on the side of the most conservative member of the group.

Unfortunately, I am not as outspoken in person with individuals as I am when writing about things as broad issues, so though I may be interested in something I often remain quiet. I’m working on this, and thinking there might be a better way. I’ve seen lists of sexual interests that couples can exchange where they rate things like “I’d love to do that – Maybe under the right circumstances – No way in hell” and I’m sure that could be adapted for couples therapy. Even if new boundaries aren’t pushed, enjoying a loving and intimate home environment while rolling is still one of my favorite things to do, and it sure as hell is a lot safer and cheaper than alcohol.

*Unfortunately we live in a place where men with guns are willing to throw peaceful adults in cages if they possess MDMA. Due to Prohibition the quality of MDMA can be compromised and can become unsafe. Please, please, please, always purchase from a trusted source, use a test kit to ensure quality, stay hydrated, and look out for each other. Rolling is amazing and can be a near spiritual experience, but it isn’t worth taking unnecessary fatal risks.  Be Safe.

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How the hell are you happy?

Twice in the last two days I’ve been asked how it is that I’m so happy. My response was a little bit simplistic but basically true for me, I said that I’m happy because I “moved out of DC, use ecstasy, ignore the state, and get laid”. I’m not recommending those steps for anyone else to be happy but the basic concept has worked well for me.

Moved out of DC: When I lived in Washington DC I was unhappy. I didn’t like the city at all. I had some good friends there but the weather, culture, and environment was awful. Washington DC is a city where dreams go to die and good intentions get infected with an incurable strain of syphilis that spreads throughout a community causing insanity and eventually death. It is a place whose culture is filled with power-hungry, narcissistic, future asshats who care only about what you can do for them. Also, the humidity and heat during the summer makes the crowded, sweaty, stinky metro rides feel more like a form of torture than a modern form of transportation. Basically, my happiness is do in part to taking steps to get out of an environment I hate and move to a place where I feel more comfortable.

Use ecstasy: While I am very open about my use of MDMA as a medicine, a relationship aid, and just for fun that is not really what this is about. Part of my happiness comes from having hobbies and interests that take my mind of the negative shit in the world. Riding my bicycle along the beach, reading books, going to raves, writing, and just diving into “Firefly” on Netflix are all ways to escape for a while, which we all need. Mental escape is necessary and healthy to remain sane in a world that the media, religion, and the government says are going to hell.

Ignore the state: Yes, the government sucks. It is a tyrannical leech that pretends to be for the “will of the people” but is really for “the profit of those in power and their friends”. The federal government continues to oppress minorities through the War on Drugs, bomb the shit out of people just because they live in another country, and spy on all citizens because we are all potential terrorists in their eyes. Governments have always done that… it is what they do, their existence is based on the use of violence against innocent people and they don’t know how to do anything else. In addition, there really isn’t a lot any of us can do about it as individuals. You can certainly protest when needed, donate to non-profits, share stories, and raise hell but I believe the best thing we can all do is mostly ignore the state and try to be happy. If there is a victimless crime that you disagree with and infringing on your rights, just fucking ignore it smartly. And remember, we live in an amazing time. We have the most powerful companies working to cure death. We have satellites, telescopes, and space probes finding out new crazy awesome things about our galaxy daily. New research is finding cures for a number of diseases. It is seriously the best time to be alive but you wouldn’t know that if you only pay attention to government.

Get laid: Sex is awesome and I’m happy when I get some (I wish this piercing would heal already so that I could get some more often…), but this is really about relationships and community. Find people who are happy and be around them. I have a community of Burners here who share the Burning Man principles and take care of each other. Communities can be based around religion, sports, hobbies, exercise, etc. but they are necessary in my mind to be happy. I wouldn’t base it around politics much anymore, though I met some fucking awesome people through the libertarian movement, but to each their own. And I find it valuable to do things with a community that moves beyond how you originally met. Do you do yoga and enjoy the people there? Then invite them to go camping and share your love of the outdoors. People working together, loving together, and sharing experiences is a source of great happiness for me. In fact, now that I think about it, this may be the most important step.

So, as we drift into another beautiful weekend I hope you all have a happy time. I know I plan on filling my few days off of work with the beauty of southern California, ecstasy, anarchy, and banging.

Sex Commandments

Well, after yesterdays stream-of-consciousness flood of randomness I think I am ready to start blogging again regularly (a claim I realize I’ve made before). I’m particularly inspired by someone who was able to do a daily blog for an entire month, which is something I haven’t done since my bike ride. So, I’m going to try that but that means things are going to get a bit more personal and often involve current events or whatever is on my mind (probably sex… especially since I feel like part of my calling is really in sex and relationship therapy).

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Today I found a cool infograph (below) about the 10 Sex Commandments for Men’s Arousal. While I hate the word commandment due to the coercive enforcement it implies I found the list interesting and think it should be tweeked to be accurate for all sexual partners regardless of the number of people present or whether they have a penis or vagina.

So, here are my 10 Sex Suggestions:

  1. Pay attention to what you are doing to your partner(s)
  2. Add variety to the way you touch and the places you touch
  3. Communicate. If verbally expressing your desires is difficult come up with other ways like pre-determined signals (ie tell your partner(s) before hand that if you put your hand on the side of their head while they go down on you that means you want them to go faster).
  4. Take your time, it isn’t a race.
  5. Be open to new things, we all have fantasies and want partners who are willing to indulge them from time to time.
  6. Try anal (guys and gals). If done right it can be extremely pleasurable.
  7. Be clean. Showering and such can be a fun activity together but really it is up to each individual to maintain themselves. You don’t need necessarily be clean-shaven everywhere but trimming is usually appreciated.
  8. Don’t fear experimentation… much like 5 you should not be afraid to try things with someone at least once. If a person is willing to share their kinks, fetishes, and fantasies with you it means they trust you and want to share that part of themselves with you. It isn’t something to be feared. Even if it is something that you can’t find yourself ever being able to do be supportive. A kink isn’t a dysfunction, it is a way they get pleasure. It is a good thing.
  9. Oral sex. Do it. EVERYONE! Seriously. It’s awesome.
  10. Thou shalt not overcomplicate sex! Remember, it’s just sex and it’s fun for a reason. Enjoy being close to someone and let the pieces fall into place. (I stole this straight from the infograph but it is pretty much perfect)

So, go out there and have some fun. Life is pretty short and there is so much to experience.

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Lifestyle Change

MeditationAlexGrey

I’m out of excuses and I’m high on motivation. It is time to actually make some changes to become healthier (inside and out) and accomplish the things I want to accomplish. For the last couple of days I have been resetting and planning out my schedule a little more so that I won’t drift into procrastination. As part of that I am hoping that making this public will help me stay accountable.

Physical

I will be working out multiple times a week after work alternating between yoga and weights. I’ll also be putting cardio into my routines either through morning bike rides to work or running at the gym after work. Some friends are also talking about doing P90X as well. I stuck with P90X before my first burn and it worked really well for me. In addition I need to start eating better. I’ve decided to cut out all drinks except for water and black coffee during the week and am trying very hard to get back into a plant based diet. Cooking meals for the week is tough but I think I can make it happen.

Mental

In addition to my yoga routine, which includes Restorative and Hatha Flow + Qigong, I am adding meditation to my daily routine. I’m still trying to work out a time of day that I can stick with this consistently, it looks like in the morning upon waking is the best time.Sleep is also a big issue, I want 7-8 hours a night and that means in bed by 10 when possible and up at 6ish. I also want to do more reading and writing, reading has been easy but writing has not. Blog updates have been pretty steady but real writing has been difficult. I think I need to really block off time in my schedule for this on the weekends or something.

Financial

I want to spend my time going to festivals, Burning Man, camping, and other events with friends. That means saving cash and not wasting it on meals, Starbucks, or out at bars very often. Cooking for myself is a main way to save some cash but I really just need to be able to say no when tempted. It isn’t easy but if I keep focused on the other events I want to do I can pull it off.

Sex and Love

Continue with giving and receiving.

Focus

So, what are the things I want to prepare for and do this year? Burning Man of course… but I’d also like to go to Lucidity as well. I’d like to be on the way to running a marathon. Saving money for my next adventure is also a goal, I’m not sure what that adventure is yet but I have a couple ideas including hiking the Pacific Crest, travelling around Australia, and a trip to Patagonia. My education is also something that I want to focus on which means getting my GRE scores up, finding some programs, and getting some applications out there. For a while I’ve been focusing on the LA area but that may change depending on how my job pans out in the next few months.

“Natural” Happiness

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Occasionally when I talk about using drugs purely for pleasure critics respond with “that’s just not natural”. This strikes me as a little strange. There seems to an arbitrary line between what is “natural” and what is “unnatural*” when it comes to enjoyment and pleasure.

If I travel to far corners of the world and witness beautiful scenes and feel pleasure this is “natural” (despite how “unnatural” getting into a metal tube with wings and flying across the world may be). If I get together with friends and take a pill and because of that pill I feel love, comfort, and pleasure this is often seen as unnatural. Pleasure comes from interactions from the brain and it doesn’t matter if these reactions come from visual stimuli, tactile sensations, or ingesting a pill.

This stigma is really not “natural” or “unnatural”, it is a rejection of the new or things that one party doesn’t really understand. It is a push to maintain the status quo and resist innovation. It is much easier to define something as unnatural than to actually hold a real debate about the pros and cons of a certain practice because to open the door to debate means the possibility on being wrong.

If you truly love someone you will celebrate all the joy they feel, regardless of whether it comes from holding a new child, skydiving, travelling the world, or taking a pill. Joy is joy, pain is pain, they are little more than reactions in the brain. The source should have no impact on how you view a person. There are many other things to worry about in this life, if a loved one feels joy that itself should be supported.

 

*Unnatural is actually an awful word to use. To say something is “unnatural” is to say it doesn’t operate or exist in nature and obviously everything we interact with exists in nature or else we wouldn’t be able to interact with it like we do. It is a deceptive word that is used when people are trying to say that what you are doing doesn’t conform with their moral code.