Citation: Voyager_1. "PTSD Insanity and a Near Death Experience: An Experience with Bad/Suspect Ecstasy (exp111123)". Erowid.org. Nov 11, 2017. erowid.org/exp/111123
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This event happened a few months ago at the time of writing this, it is the report of the time where I nearly died from a bad pill, and had numerous side effects for months afterwards. This was one of the worst experiences of my life, yet very profound in its impacts now. Be careful when taking drugs, if you read to the end you will see why I should've been far more careful.
Back story prior to the experience:
The experience happened sometime in March 2017, just at the end of the winter. I was a young kid at 15 years of age, new to substances that had psychoactive effects yet I already had my mind set out on a mission to explore the limits of the realm of consciousness, the goal being to try DMT to challenge my nihilistic viewpoints on the entire world and concept of life. Ecstasy was meant to be a stepping stone to get there, and at the time would be only the second drug I had ever consumed, the first being weed, in which I had only started using the previous December, so the whole process was certainly rushed.
Me and two friends, we'll call them M and L, were interested in trying MDMA and planned on taking some when me, them and some other friends came round my house for the night. Finding the right dealer took a while, but my usual plug ended up telling me that he could sell me pills, but no powdered MDMA. I believed this to be fine as prior to the experience I had been treating the substances as the same during all my research of the substance. I ended up buying two pills as it was all I could get, but my research was lacking and I had no idea what to look out for in pills of E to check if it was all good etc. Research was lacking in general, the pills were red bricks and were incredibly hard and tough to break apart
the pills were red bricks and were incredibly hard and tough to break apart
. The day came, and we decided to first meet some friends and the park to smoke some dank and drink a lot of Vodka. Me, M, L, and two other friends named J and F headed back to my house, but after J had stated some dangers of bad pills M and L tapped out of taking some of the E, however I believed the chance of a bad pill would still be very unlikely, and I needed to feel this insane happiness and take myself closer to curing my nihilistic view on life. 'Fuck it', I said and decided I would take it anyway.
At 1am I thought the alcohol was out of my system enough so that I could take the E and have it kick in after the alcohol would've had the potential to dehydrate me, a very rough and uncalculated assumption. Some people were started to fall asleep due to the weed and me and F were the only ones still moving about and agreed that I should go for it. Note, the following effects I believe are due to the pill being very bad and not actual MDMA, although I can never be certain. I first started with just a quarter of the pill, just to test for any bad reactions. After half an hour I took another quarter, barely containing my nerves and excitement, nothing had happened yet. After an hour and a half passed I was still feeling nothing so gobbled up the rest of the pill hoping I would actually feel something. Now, as soon as the pill was down my throat It hit me like a freight train. I was sitting on my floor and was immediately swept away by the intensity, which I hear is uncommon on ecstasy for such a rapid come up. There wasn't even a come up really, just a very warm feeling in my neck like electricity sparking through my spine for a few minutes before being catapulted from my normal mind state. As I sat on my floor, a concerned brief thought of ' Holy shit, this is only the first dose' entered my thoughts before being quickly swept away by the overwhelming sense of euphoria. I felt amazing, the most incredible feeling ever, barely able to move, expressions of intense pleasure stricken across my face. I have memories of about two minutes of my experience being this joyful before it goes hazy and then hellish. After a few minutes I was passed out on my floor.
The Turning point:
I awake on my floor, uncertain of the time that has passed, but I'm lying down with my headphones still on, not playing anything. F is falling asleep, assuming I had just been listening to music. I drift back in to consciousness and open my eyes. Two things then terrified me to a state of grief and worry I have never experienced again in my life. As I drift back in, there is a pain in my gut, a pain so gruelling and intense and disgusting I can barely recall it, a feeling like my intestines and gut were dissolving inside me. I look at F and the whole room is shaking. Due to my poor research I was unaware of the eye twitching side effect, however after discussing these eye shakes with others they sound far more intense. The eye shakes started happening uncontrollably and so fast that it was impossible to make out anything in the room. I shake F's leg and he wakes up and I look at him with my eyes spazzing out like mad, all the way side to side 40 times a second for ten seconds before a one second break. The eye shakes were happening side to side, however for me the whole world was moving up and down which was slightly disturbing. This shit freaked me the fuck out, and F wakes up J and they look at me discussing what to do, F is a great guy, but was laughing uncontrollably, J looked scared shitless. I watched them talk yet couldn't hear a word spoken, the whole world had gone silent.
Here is where the trip gets weird, very weird. Without thinking, I crawled out onto my balcony, but what is odd is the fact I hadn't registered the last two minutes at all in my head, I had no idea about my eye shakes and couldn't register the gut pain. It was as if my body was reacting to the stimuli, causing me to be terrified, yet my ego was so disassociated that I was unaware that anything was wrong, or perhaps I was just too euphoric still. Almost like primal instinct, I shove my fist into my throat without a seconds hesitation and throw up. That was the precise moment in which I snapped back to reality, realising exactly what was going on and suddenly feeling a lot less fucked up. This was real. I was horrified, fully aware of the pain now and aware that I was in serious danger of dying. I force myself to throw up again. M is now awake, L won't wake up when F tries. My friends don't call an ambulance, being afraid of the situation and the fact my mum was sleeping upstairs. I didn't think this would be happening. J runs into the kitchen and brings me an apple as a placebo, telling me it'll make it go away. I eat it and it causes me to throw up more. Throwing up mixed with the insane levels of adrenaline from realising my own situation in the most surreal way imaginable helps me hang on and fight. My friends keep bringing me apples repeatedly, yet I only remember ever eating 2, they bring me orange juice and I drank 2 litres of it but only remember taking a gulp and deciding it didn't help.
Due to the commotion my mum comes down the stairs and out to the balcony, unaware of what was going she screams at me to get inside and drags me through the doors as I stare up at her with eyes wider than I can physically force them to go, still shaking. As I stared up at her pulling me in I realised she had no face at all. She looked exactly like slenderman, her face melting off constantly. She leaves and I look up to the wall of my living room. Across the whole wall is an image of a supply drop from the game Call of Duty: Black Ops 3. They come and go across the wall, opening up as they do. However, instead of containing the usual cosmetics for the game they are instead snapchat stories from people I know at school. Each of them a black image captioned 'Pray For Josh' with an emoji of interlocking fingers. Over and over and over again. I was convinced that these were entirely real, and people really were posting this on snapchat at 4am, within minutes of me starting to die. I was so convinced that when I later checked snapchat that night to find no one had posted it I was confused beyond belief, and at that stage I wasn't even as out of my mind anymore.
But anyways, back to the story. I'm starting to feel like I'm not going to die anymore, the vomiting and adrenaline surge had definitely prevented any serious injury that was to occur, and although still fucked up, my mental state felt pretty normal now due to the insane levels of adrenaline. My memory is missing parts, but now that it's 4 and I'm pretty sure I'm going to live. My friends start trying to sleep, I'm forever grateful to them for what they did that night, I truly believe they saved my life by inducing my vomit with the apples so the apple became a metaphor for my lifeline and my saviour. I ask for them to stay up and talk to me to keep me grounded, but they have been for ages so tell me to chill out to my music.
The soundtrack of hell:
I put on my music and shuffled a playlist I had, and what I was about to hear was the darkest most hellish thing imaginable, causing shivers down my spine whenever I heard the songs I listened to for months after the experience. I have since experienced ego death on acid, along with various other intense experiences using substances and without them, yet this was by far the most intense, strange and reality bending experience I've ever had.
The three songs I remember listening to were as follows: Doom - Crosshairs , King Geedorah - The Fine Print and Mos Def - Auditorium. As I listened I could recognise the song, yet the music sounded distorted and entirely different. The strangest bit, however, was the vocals. They came out clear enough for me to hear each word, however the way they were strung together was so incredibly alien that none of the lines made any sense whatsoever, complete gibberish every second. I do not understand how this worked, but no matter what words I heard there was no possible way I could've ever deemed it to make sense, it really felt like the whole world and my sense of reality had slipped away from me and nothing could keep me grounded to a sense of what was real. The gibberish lines were so confusing and odd yet the rappers sounded so natural in saying them that the cringe sent shivers across my body. What made it even stranger was the tone and rhythm of the words. It was all said in a monotone and monorythmic way, the words coming out in the same pattern every line before the last syllable of each line was stretched out and given a pitch similar to that of someone saying 'Nowwww' as a TV host. This tone caused some crazy closed eye visuals, as I could constantly see a cartoon version of the rapper MF DOOM standing on a stage in a quiz show moving his mouth to the words before my perspective shifted to show the night sky and a giant balloon of an evil clown towering over the whole festival that the quiz show was at, over and over again. The second song talks about battling the rapper's enemies as if he were in medieval times, and the concept of a rap being about medieval times whilst not understanding that it was a metaphor was the most surreal thing ever, and confused the shit out of me. The third song's chorus made it seem as though people were jumping around in my headphones talking right in my ear, left to right. It's impossible to fully describe, but the sheer weirdness of this music was ridiculous.
Time passes and I'm feeling better, L has woken up and realises what's happening due to me mopping up my sick on the balcony. He hugs me and it allows me to feel my heartbeat, racing at 150 BPM even after hours have passed and I am no longer feeling scared. I notice that I've been running my hand through my hair the whole time, pulling out hair from the front to relieve stress. It's impossible to sleep, my eyes are still naturally as wide as physically possible and I'm not tired at all. I end up going on snapchat and briefly put up a message on my story thanking J and F for saving me, before taking it down upon realising it made no sense and I didn't want people to know of this experience. When I discover the 'Pray for Josh' snapchat stories aren't actually posted by anyone at all I'm confused beyond belief. I wait out the remainder of the night, which actually passed pretty fast. In the morning two friends from the night before come round for breakfast. As we're sitting in my front room talking to them about what happened I repeatedly trail off, stare into the distance unknowingly, not thinking about anything and pulling my hair.
I repeatedly trail off, stare into the distance unknowingly, not thinking about anything and pulling my hair.
This was a tick that lasted for around two months after the experience. The morning actually has me feeling very happy and refreshed, unlike any sort of comedown. This is probably due to the feeling of beating death. I manage to sleep later on.
PTSD and complete Insanity:
If you have read this far, thank you for your time, what I'll touch upon now is the after effects of the pill which was deemed by a psychiatrist as likely to be PTSD (no diagnosis). It may be hard for me to recall every effect I had long term here, but I'll do my best. The first side effect that was apparent were certain 'ticks' that I had. I would constantly go blank in my mind and stare into the distance for around two minutes at a time, even if around other people. The experience was actually pushed from my mind relatively quickly, but due to the various flashbacks I definitely hadn't gotten rid of it, I was just putting on a show where I tried to act normal. I wasn't normal.
The concept of what ideas were sensible and realistic broke down completely. Within the first few days I developed the belief that I was actually in a coma, and needed to wake up. Every night when I fell asleep, I would hear people such as my family and my friends talking to me, as if I were in a coma and they were sitting besides my hospital bed, wishing me to get better etc. Sometimes it felt so real that when I shut my eyes it felt as though my mind was elevated upwards so far that I reached the real world briefly, and could even see the people sitting besides my bed. I remember exactly where my hospital bed was, for some reason it was in the same building as the county building responsible for parking permits etc, I have no idea why but I believed I was in a hospital bed there. They 'nystagmus' or eye twitches stayed present for a few weeks after the experience. A lot of the time open eye nystagmus was uncontrollable and for even longer every time I shut my eyes they twitched inside the sockets, rubbing against my eyelids. It was hard to sleep.
Most effects seemed to come in cycles of two weeks, lasting briefly then disappearing, and I briefly also had extreme paranoia. Another side effect was the inability to talk reasonably. Whenever I was in large groups of people I would talk gibberish similar to what I heard in my music, saying things that made completely no sense constantly, blabbering on like someone who was brain dead. Many friends didn't like this and drifted away, I could barely ever string conversations together without muttering some complete gibberish. I would feel people put chips on my head and the first time I experienced this I teared up from realising it didn't happen after how real it felt.
Here is where I realised the side effects were serious. Years prior to this experience I had a voice in my head that I would associate as the essence of all evil and greed. His voice came back, far stronger and louder. There would be moments where the dialogue in my head became extremely violent and angered, but it wasn't my voice, it was his. For a few days, different voices sounded off in my head telling me I was worthless, probably because I felt guilty about scarring the friends who had to save me and feeling so trampy due to it. It would get to the point where 14 different dialogues would happen inside my head, becoming so loud that I couldn't hear any of my thoughts. These short episodes would result in me passing out wherever I was. On around day 4 of having this happen it was the first time where the voice took full control. It was disturbing, my voice was drowned out to the point where it was no longer there, then it went quiet, it was just him, the essence of all evil, alone in my head. I'm lucky this mostly happened at night when I was alone because he would take full control of me and my body. He would message people on snapchat, good friends of mine, telling them the most violent deeds he wished to inflict on them. I would be short tempered and angry in the day, lashing out at people and even choking them. I realise this voice resonated from inside my physical biology, but in my mind I couldn't have been further from being him. He was evil, literal evil, telling friends he wished them dead. Of course, this wasn't taken well. I don't blame anyone who was driven from me due to it, I was nuts, I was literally telling people how I would want to gouge their eyes out for no reason. It wasn't me trying to be edgy, it was a full on persona in my head.
He usually listened to Death Grips when he took control, turning my head into a cauldron of rage, before it resulted in me eventually passing out. The third time it happened I defeated him by creating a new persona in my head named 'mini me' who sat on my shoulder, and when he tried to control him it was a trap and 'mini me' killed him and I was safe. The next time it happened he simply snapped mini me's neck and took control of me anyway. It was insanity, I couldn't hear myself think. I started hallucinating during the day, seeing object randomly ark upwards towards the ceiling before coming back down instantly. When I fell asleep I would see Saron from Lord of the Rings standing in the corner of my room. I heard people speak right behind me in my ear when no one was around. When he took control of me he would write lyrics of the most unspeakable thing as notes for me to read, realising it was me who wrote them. He would turn me into an evil genius, and create the most complex designs and objects and aerodynamic packages for cars every time I went to try and sleep.
Reality was shattered, I constantly felt as though I was in a simulation or a coma, I thought friends trying to talk to me on snapchat were agents from the people running the simulation trying to figure out what I knew. I felt watched, I felt monitored, nothing was real. I was truly all on my own for a while, it allowed me to think of the craziest ideas, some of them truly genius. I tried to construct my ego into shapes to help thought flow.
I needed help. I went to my GP and told them about my experiences, they referred me to a psychiatric centre, I had weekly sessions over a span of around five months or so. They could be tough at times, after the sessions I would talk to myself instead of thinking in my head, leaving my mind blank. I got better though, I've mended relations with my friends as best as I can but with some there are most likely still scars remaining. Around the same time I also had a few other traumatic experiences that happened to me, I had a genuine and justified fear of being robbed and stabbed everyday for a while afterwards, yet I feel most of these experiences were from the bad E.
Be careful, it took me months to get better and I'm not the same now. LSD was actually part of what helped me get better, but taking drugs won't be the same again. Do research, be careful, make sure your mind is prepared. I'm 15, I'm lucky my experiences only cost me friendships rather than a whole lifestyle.
Thank you for reading.
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