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Hi folks,

I'm glad to have found this place. I 'm 50 now, been around the block many, many times but just recently (well several months ago) decided for a lark to indulge in a stash of acid I'de been hoarding for 10 years or so. The trip was great but with a pretty hard comedown, and it felt a little odd, not like the acid I was used to, but still kind of like acid. I'm a veteran and so I know my way around the 'usual' acid variations, and this was definitely just...different. Less visual, hard to put my finger on it.

A week later I had some beers, smoked some weed and woke up kind of tripping and in an anxiety spiral. I was trapped, like behind a pane of glass, like my consciousness had sheared off from the surface of my perceptions and I had no traction. I was really just struggling to hold it together. If it wasn't for the fact that I've rode out a few shitty or intense trips I probably would have outright panicked. Oh, also the trails came back full force, but it was the splitting off that was deeply disturbing, the trails were not really bothersome.

It was weird, I could do my work (thank god for lockdown and work from home) and it seemed even extra bizarre that I was somehow disconnectedly competent even though I felt like something had broken in my brain. In fact work distraction helped - being alone in the dark was bad, and mornings brought anxiety escalations that took a while to bring into a functional level.

Anyway, I count myself lucky. After several days I could kind of push my consciousness forward through the glass layer and for a few seconds I could connect with reality again. I remember almost crying with relief when that happened, it was like being able to take a tiny breath of hope. Anyway, I practised that pushing and gradually over a couple of months things kept improving. I had broken my toe and that was healing so I started exercise again and that helped more. Gradually the shearing off sensation reduced and I became kind of normal I guess. 

It's several months later I have trails permanently and I suffer from anxiety, and if things are really stressful I feel sort of a bit split off again. I wake most mornings in an anxious weird state but even 10 minutes of exercise kind of washes it away. Some days better, some days worse. I'm not the same and it's sometimes hard to tell how much I have just maybe got used to it, but I am thankful that I am substantially OK. I can connect with people (my young daughter especially) and that is what counts.

It feels somehow conforting to know I am not alone in this. I have so much empathy for the folks accounts I have read here, and I have only had a small taste of what some of you are living with. 

There's not much more to say - I understand why such a forum can't have too much traffic, even just focusing on it enought to introduce myself kind of brings it back.

Regardless, in my way, I see you. Thank you for sharing.

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Hello Friend, 

Welcome to the forum!  Yes, traffic has slowed considerably in the past few months; hasn't always been like this.  I have lived with this condition for about 13 years, I am currently in my early 30s with a family and in graduate school.  It has certainly complicated my life but it also has forced me to take better care of myself, consistently practice meditation and stay completely sober in order to have a normal life.  I recently ingested some weed after about 2.5 years of complete sobriety in an attempt to improve emotional wellbeing and stimulate creativity.  It wasn't the best idea and I feel likeI took a few steps back but I feel hopeful that things will return to baseline overtime. 

In the past, I have made at least two recoveries into feeling like myself post psychedelic adventures.  It takes time, patience and some hope but it will get better.  As you can imagine, probably the worst thing one can do is continue to use drugs.  However, we don't always behave rationally when emotions are involved and some of us (like me) have to learn the hard way.  

The best advice I can give you is to keep doing what you're doing.  Give it time, try not to focus on it, stay positive and keep exercising! Additionally, quality sleep seems to help and sleep deprivation can exacerbate symptoms.  Meditation has also really helped me climb out of the web of despair and feel normal again. Keep reaching out, I'd love to hear how things turn out for you.  

Take Care,

Nick 

Edited by cosmiccharlie
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On 4/16/2021 at 9:54 AM, Reflector said:

Hi folks,

I'm glad to have found this place. I 'm 50 now, been around the block many, many times but just recently (well several months ago) decided for a lark to indulge in a stash of acid I'de been hoarding for 10 years or so. The trip was great but with a pretty hard comedown, and it felt a little odd, not like the acid I was used to, but still kind of like acid. I'm a veteran and so I know my way around the 'usual' acid variations, and this was definitely just...different. Less visual, hard to put my finger on it.

A week later I had some beers, smoked some weed and woke up kind of tripping and in an anxiety spiral. I was trapped, like behind a pane of glass, like my consciousness had sheared off from the surface of my perceptions and I had no traction. I was really just struggling to hold it together. If it wasn't for the fact that I've rode out a few shitty or intense trips I probably would have outright panicked. Oh, also the trails came back full force, but it was the splitting off that was deeply disturbing, the trails were not really bothersome.

It was weird, I could do my work (thank god for lockdown and work from home) and it seemed even extra bizarre that I was somehow disconnectedly competent even though I felt like something had broken in my brain. In fact work distraction helped - being alone in the dark was bad, and mornings brought anxiety escalations that took a while to bring into a functional level.

Anyway, I count myself lucky. After several days I could kind of push my consciousness forward through the glass layer and for a few seconds I could connect with reality again. I remember almost crying with relief when that happened, it was like being able to take a tiny breath of hope. Anyway, I practised that pushing and gradually over a couple of months things kept improving. I had broken my toe and that was healing so I started exercise again and that helped more. Gradually the shearing off sensation reduced and I became kind of normal I guess. 

It's several months later I have trails permanently and I suffer from anxiety, and if things are really stressful I feel sort of a bit split off again. I wake most mornings in an anxious weird state but even 10 minutes of exercise kind of washes it away. Some days better, some days worse. I'm not the same and it's sometimes hard to tell how much I have just maybe got used to it, but I am thankful that I am substantially OK. I can connect with people (my young daughter especially) and that is what counts.

It feels somehow conforting to know I am not alone in this. I have so much empathy for the folks accounts I have read here, and I have only had a small taste of what some of you are living with. 

There's not much more to say - I understand why such a forum can't have too much traffic, even just focusing on it enought to introduce myself kind of brings it back.

Regardless, in my way, I see you. Thank you for sharing.

Hello Friend, 

Welcome to the forum!  Yes, traffic has slowed considerably in the past few months; hasn't always been like this.  I have lived with this condition for about 13 years, I am currently in my early 30s with a family and in graduate school.  It has certainly complicated my life but it also has forced me to take better care of myself, consistently practice meditation and stay completely sober in order to have a normal life.  I recently ingested some weed after about 2.5 years of complete sobriety in an attempt to improve emotional wellbeing and stimulate creativity.  It wasn't the best idea and I feel likeI took a few steps back but I feel hopeful that things will return to baseline overtime. 

In the past, I have made at least two recoveries into feeling like myself post psychedelic adventures.  It takes time, patience and some hope but it will get better.  As you can imagine, probably the worst thing one can do is continue to use drugs.  However, we don't always behave rationally when emotions are involved and some of us (like me) have to learn the hard way.  

The best advice I can give you is to keep doing what you're doing.  Give it time, try not to focus on it, stay positive and keep exercising! Additionally, quality sleep seems to help and sleep deprivation can exacerbate symptoms.  Meditation has also really helped me climb out of the web of despair and feel normal again. Keep reaching out, I'd love to hear how things turn out for you.  

Take Care,

Nick 

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Thanks Nick, I really appreciate your thoughts. I think many of us may be self-medicating for other conditions and I, too, have gone completely abstinent for years at a time but at the cost of some 'deadness' which prompts me to seek relief. I have generally stopped short of really self-destructive behavior and as I get older I have been mellowing out which helps a lot. I exercise regularly and have done so for years now, so that is a pretty well-set habit. I feel no more need for drug adventures, I have been there and done that more than enough! So dialling it down to find some balance seems to be my modus operandi - that trip was literally a what-the-hell lark for old times sake. Oh well, live and learn!

I have a bit of an autoimmune condition which has taught me to respect my body and seems to echo what works for my HPPD as well. I would say in this order of importance:

  • Healthy diet and sleep tied at number one. Not obsessive regimented diet, but just sensible. 
  • Exercise
  • Work\Life balance, trying not to sweat the small stuff
  • Space to reflect and recover (I am an introvert by nature)
  • Healthy 'Hacking' techniques (Coherent breathing, Brainwave entrainment)
  • Connections to people, not 'going dark'

Overall I feel lucky that I seem to have recovered from the depersonalization/derealization which was deeply disturbing for me. I have always had a bit of anxiety, and one of the silver linings is that this has allowed me to really recognize that (seeing our own weaknesses can be hard to do). It's not comfortable dealing with it in it's escalated form, but I feel like I have some insight and tools to do this now which may even benefit me beyond coping/recovering from HPPD.

In terms of why I'm here, I don't think I have anywhere near the depth of many here in terms of managing this so I don't have much advice. Also I am generally OK and managing a pretty light condition from what I can see so I am not struggling too much. Really it's just to  check in and let you folks know how impressed I am with the community here, it seems like it really is the right balance to genuinely help and support each other. 

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