Ecstasy, the common name for methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine (MDMA) may appear appropriate to “ecstasy” users, but both third party perspectives, and the refusal to use the word ecstasy by the sober masses, are initial clues to how misleading the inaccurate brand “ecstasy” is. So let us look at the opposing perspectives to understand our personal decisions when it comes to drug use, and why such a positive term as ecstasy is used to name a powerful, mind-altering, and devastating drug.
Ecstasy is defined as: “Rapturous delight, an overpowering emotion or exaltation; a state of sudden, intense feeling and a secondary meaning is delight, bliss, elation, a sense of being taken or moved out of one’s self or one’s normal state, and entering a state of intensified or heightened feeling.”
With this as a starting point, it is easy to see how MDMA users would jump at the chance to describe and label their experience with such a beautiful description as ecstasy.
Talking, hugging, dancing, and sex are the positive components that MDMA users wish to experience when they want to get high. These actions are commonly experienced. However, MDMA has been misleadingly labeled, because these supposed positive experiences are but minute aspects of the “ecstasy” experience.
Both empathogen and entactogen are labels that have been used to categorize methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine. These categories were made to distinguish them from hallucinogens and amphetamines. Empathogen is used to describe chemical agents that induce feelings of empathy. Entactogen is used because empathogen has pathos (Greek for sympathy) in it, which is thought to be misleading and too limiting a description. To remove the sympathy concept and expand its positive aspects, the category of chemicals called entactogen is used. It is composed of Greek and Latin roots, which mean: within, touch and produce. Users of methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine say they experience feelings of empathy, love, and emotional closeness to others.
It is no wonder that sexual predators use “ecstasy” as the main tool in their arsenal of psychoactive drugs.
Since ecstasy is a combination of a hallucinogen and an amphetamine, it brings about several reactions of the mind and body, and these reactions change during the hours of its effect. It is also experienced differently and unpredictably whenever it is taken. Knowing this, why are the chemicals that bring about depression, loss of mental alertness, and negative physical, emotional, intellectual, and social interactions placed in categories such as empathogen and entactogen? Why is ecstasy thought to be a good choice to label methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine? The same question could be asked for methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine’s other labels Adam, Clarity, Essence, Stacy, Lover’s Speed, Eve, etc.
SNL once lampooned the quick sell tactics of Ronco, Popeil, and K-tel that aimed their simple products and simpler commercials to audiences that are easily enticed into giving their money away with just a 30-second blurb. This successful marketing campaign was supported by the uninformed, since there was no internet at that time, you could not find out any information on the products they were selling.
Selling ecstasy because when you take it you can talk, hug, dance, and have sex with intense empathy, love, and emotional closeness with others is the equivalent to buying a Bass-o-matic. A Bass-o-matic is the quick sell product that SNL lampooned; it is only a blender. Dan Akroyd simply placed some water and a whole bass (a fish) into the blender with the explanation that now you could drink the raw fish. Yes, unfortunately, you cannot drink a fish but now with the Bass-o-matic, you have the ability to drink a fish in seconds, yes, it’s that easy.
“Yes it’s that easy” is the hook (pun intended) that many useless products were sold with. Now think about the hook and the reality of “ecstasy”. Talking, hugging, dancing, and sex with intense empathy, love, and emotional closeness is standard in successful relationships (maybe not the dancing). These things are nothing out of the ordinary for humans. While infatuation or love can occur instantly empathy, love, and emotional closeness really occur over time and if things work out over long periods, the learned response of empathy, love, and emotional closeness becomes stronger and stronger.
The SNL commercial sells you a new found ability to drink fish in no time at all and then it shows you the silliness (it’s gross) of drinking it down. Similarly, ecstasy while “yes it’s that easy” may be just as hard to swallow as the taste of a blended fish with its chopped up bones, scales, and stringy intestinal tract.
For the sake of decorum and brevity, here is a short list of risky components to swallow with ecstasy. Keep in mind these are viewed from the perspective of someone that does not use illegal drugs.
Hypertension, dehydration, hyperthermia, depression, arrest, memory loss, car accidents, and of course the new reality brought on by these “ecstatic” affects. Now add to the mix, the fact that ecstasy is a date rape drug, so the huggie or hugger may simply be playing along and easily manipulate the ecstasy user out the door, take them away, and rape them. This occurs because the ecstasy user is the one who does not perceive reality while claiming to be the one to get it.
Non-users swing into two modes when date rape occurs. On one hand, they are furious that sexual predators use ecstasy to trap victims and they are furious at the victims at being so stupid for taking ecstasy. On the other hand, they get RAVE (Really Apathetic to Victims of Ecstasy). When users discuss their use of methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine they sound like pitchman on TV thinking everyone should fall for half-truths and blatant lies.
You would be hard pressed to find entries online that actually say, “when I am on ecstasy I really lose touch with reality” or “I really dummy down when I’m on ecstasy” or maybe on a more analytic note “It’s amazing how many IQ points you need to lose to become ecstatic.” Instead you will find “I love the attention and how I am able to be so intellectual.” Some online users are more open with their experiences. “I found myself suddenly feeling very very depressed and very very guilty for what I have done. I completely lost the happy feeling and wanted nothing more but to go home and be alone.”
What nickname would you come up with for methylenedioxy-N-methylamphetamine?
If you or someone you know is using Ecstasy, please contact us right away. We’re here to help.
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