Melissa Stetten Tries Molly

November 26, 2013 • Culture


I remember taking molly when it was called ecstasy.  Molly referred to powder that was the purest form of MDMA, which was a rare get when I was going to raves.  I highly doubt the molly that is currently going around now is pure MDMA.  People cut drugs with so much garbage like meth and coke that it’s almost impossible to know if what you’re taking is pure MDMA, or even ecstasy at all.  Easy solution: just don’t do them.  I HATE that Miley Cyrus talks about molly.  She has no idea how much of an influence she has on younger girls.  Molly is so fucking bad for you and has horrendous long term effects.  Just ask my raver friend from high school who has taken hundreds of pills and has holes in his brain.

I’m lucky that I never got too deep into the drug scene. I’d probably need a permanent IV of Zoloft had I “rolled” at every rave I went to.  I was an angst-y control freak during my teens so I was always driving my friends to Chicago and Detroit on the weekends.  I prided myself on avoiding drugs because I had to be the responsible one who figured out directions to these secret parties.

When I was fifteen, before I had my driver’s license, and at the beginning of my raving days, I took the train to Chicago with my two friends to stay at their sister’s house for the weekend.  We really wanted to see the movie “Groove,” which wasn’t playing in Kalamazoo, and there was also a huge rave happening that weekend.  We had a flyer for the party called something like “Fantazia” or “Happy Vibes.”  I remember Paul Oakenfold being the DJ, who I wanted to see the most since “Tranceport” was my favorite album in 1999.  There were probably other DJs like Paul Johnson or DJ Funk there too, I can’t remember.  I was such a raver, you guys.  Please don’t judge me.  My two friends and I took a cab to the rave all the way on the Southside of Chicago in some dingy warehouse.  We paid thirty dollars to get in and it was so amazing.  I thought ravers were the coolest people ever.  Looking back, I’m sure they wondered what the fuck a zit-faced fifteen year old with braces was doing there.  I had my giant UFO parachute pants on and adidas visor to compliment my homemade beaded glow-in-the-dark bracelets.

Paul Oakenfold played his remix of Radiohead’s Street Spirit, which was my jam!  My friends and I were having a blast, and I was partying with the twenty-year-old raver guys from Kalamazoo I had crushes on.  I was such a dork.  After the party ended at around 6am, my two friends and I needed a ride back and we found some really nice strangers (nice = on tons of ecstasy) who offered us a ride back but were having an after party at their house.  Of course we went to the party.

I was sitting on the couch with my two friends being uncomfortable and shy, while the Chicago raver kids danced around to music.  They played the Wisdome remix of Michael Jackson’s Off The Wall, which I ended up listening to religiously over the next year. I know so much useless knowledge about rave music during 1998-2002.  I would be so good at the Trivial Pursuit Rave Edition if there was one.  A guy at the party asked my friends and I if we wanted pills.  He showed us a plastic bag full of little white pills with buddhas imprinted on them. I said no, because I had never done it, but was easily talked into it.  I was so impressionable and adorable at fifteen.  I swallowed the pill with my two other friends (one of whom later said he faked taking it because he wanted to be coherent if anything shady happened, whatta guy!) and after about twenty minutes I was totally fucked up.

It was 7am and the sun was coming up.  The shades were pulled over the windows because to us it was still night.  The next few hours were a blur of sweating, dancing, drinking water, and breathing in vicks vapor rub from a paper surgical mask.  I turned into a full-blown ecstasy user within hours.  My pupils were ridiculously large.  Every sound that went into my brain felt warm and fuzzy.  The only way to explain it is pure euphoria. I’m not going to lie, it was one of the greatest feelings I’ve ever experienced.  My teenage brain was flooded with serotonin and all my hatred for everything turned into love.  It was scary that my brain was capable of feeling like that.  I can’t even imagine how heroin must feel.

As soon as the ecstasy started to wear off, so did my comfort.  I snapped back into real life pretty quickly and was physically exhausted.  My pupils remained huge for the next few hours.  My jaw hurt from doing that whole teeth clenching crack head thing.  We got a ride back to my friend’s sister’s house around noon and showed up looking like we hadn’t slept in days.  I felt so uncomfortable and had horrible anxiety.  We missed our train and had to get tickets for the next one.  The two-hour train ride back to Kalamazoo was miserable.  I sat there staring at the back of the seat in front of me, listening to my discman that had the Trainspotting soundtrack in it.  New Order– Tempation, and Underworld– Born Slippy are still two of my favorite songs.

I took ecstasy a few more times and had really great, fun times with friends, but was (thankfully) wise enough to know how much damage it could cause.  Ultimately, ecstasy ended up being the cause of the worst day of my life, involving drug dealers, a rave with GZA and Q-Bert, my friend being hospitalized, and a backpack full of money.  I was only seventeen.  I have no idea how I’m still alive.

  • Emmanuel Goldstein

    It’s a misconception that MDMA causes holes in the brains of users.

    “Another common legend that surfaced around the year 2000 was that ecstasy can put holes in the brain, akin to Swiss cheese, which are presumed to be permanent. Actually, no known drug is capable of creating physical holes in the human brain, though some substances (e.g., neurotoxins) can still do significant damage.[81] The possible neurotoxicity of MDMA is still not entirely known as several studies on the matter have been discredited as flawed by independent researchers.

    The concept of “holes” most likely comes from a misinterpretation of SPECT (and other) scans which show the levels of activity (or lack thereof) in certain areas of the brain, by measuring glucose usage, blood flow, and other proxies for activity. Such scans do not, however, show the physical structure of the brain. This misconception was likely popularized by an episode of MTV’s True Life, “I’m on Ecstasy” (2000), which featured a former poly-drug user (including heavy use of MDMA) whose brain scan showed several areas of greatly diminished activity.[82]

    Another possible source for the “holes in the brain” myth would be Olney’s Lesions. These are actually tiny holes in the brain—they have been found in the brains of rats, not humans, who have been heavily dosed with PCP or ketamine, not MDMA”

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