I tried to register with this forum around 4 years ago but every email address I used was never sent a confirmation email. So finally I am registered and hope that my experiences can help other and I can gain help from others experiences.
In the year 2000 when I had not long turned 16 I noticed that something called salvia divinorum was being advertised on the internet as a legal trip. I had only used solvents and smoked cannabis at this stage and was scared of chemicals like mdma and amphetamines but was interested in natural highs like mushrooms, dmt and acid.
I ordered a bag of the standard leaf and smoked a fairly small bong of the leaf and lay on my bed in the dark and started to notice neon cartoon patterns moving around and found the short experience very pleasurable so the next night I smoked a bong of hash first then two large bongs of salvia and lay on my bed with the light on. Almost staight away my bed looked like it was starting to spin off into infinity and my body was beginning to drift away on the rings, I was loving it at this point then I remembered that I was told it's normally better to take it in darkness so switched off my light and lay back on my bed, this was the biggest mistake I could ever have made as almost instantly the trip became overwhelming, serious and frightening, my bedroom furniture started morphing into letters that were marching around the room, then everything I knew as real started to disappear and I couldn't see my body and became surrounded in pixelated patterns that kept getting larger and larger while my heart beat got faster and faster, it reached a point of intensity that I had a sudden thought that if I don't get the light back on I'll be stuck here in this weird pixelated place with no body or my heart will keep getting faster until I die. As I couldn't see anything real I was panicking frantically feeling around for the light switch and finally got it on and thankfully things calmed down pretty quick after that but I was still in a state of distress and panic, I ran through to the kitchen and grabbed a handful of sweets from the cupboard and his under my duvet cover and tried to calm down, this was when I noticed for the first time I was having closed eye visuals and the flavours of the sweets were changing the colours and shapes of the visuals.
I was told that this stuff was supposed to last around 30 minutes and this was now more than 3 hours into the experience. The closed eye visuals have never stopped since then so now when I'm tired and want to relax if I lie down and close my eyes my eyes are always still open on the inside and depending on how I'm feeling or if I've had any sedative type of medication will depend on if it is possible for me to close my eyes and relax or if closing them throws me into a rollercoaster ride of fractal style patterns that I can feel my body move with as the patterns change, spin and move in waves. The exact same thing happens when it starts to get dark and if I'm in total darkness it makes no difference if my eyes are open or closed and often I can't tell. Thankfully during the day or when I'm in a well lit room I can see the patterns but they look more like a heat haze and as long as I keep my eyes focused only my peripheral vision moves but I still feel the movements of the patterns as movements of energy through my body and only in the last ten years have I really managed to be able to cope with it. Until I discovered diazepam in my 20s when I was sitting in a room with other people watching tv I suffered intense anxiety, I held my focus on the tv while everything around my point of vision moved leaving me feeling stuck to the seat as the movements of the patterns moved through my body.
It has also affected every drug I have taken since, when I used to smoke cannabis I would see 3d spider's web type patterns that would seem to go on into infinity, as if looking at a wall is looking into a cinema screen.
Around a year after taking the salvia and I was still wondering if it would ever go away was the first time I lost my fear of chemicals and decided to try ecstasy for my 17th birthday because of its connection to the rave music that is by far the most important thing in my life and the sound changed my life long before I knew what drugs were. Anyway, on the comedown I could see fantastic moving spiderweb patterns over the top of everything I could see as real, I asked everyone I was taking it with if they were tripping and they couldn't understand why I was. After that I kept it to myself, tried to just get on with life and force through the anxiety. 2 years later I met my first girlfriend and I told her about salvia, I had been keeping up to date with the salvia research centre online as they hadn't yet found what receptor it was binding to to cause it's effects, my girlfriend was studying neuroscience so when they found out that salvinorin A binds to the kappa opioid receptor this was really interesting to her, also it is the only psychoactive substance which doesn't contain nitrogen in its structure so she wrote a paper on it for one of her assignments only for it to be laughed as as the day before it was on a morning talk show as a new legal high and everyone thought she got her idea from that.
In the last few years I have spent short spells in prison and having the ability to self medicate taken away from me has been absolute torture.
I am doing my best to turn my life around so I never have to go through experiences like that again and without benzodiazepines I would be unable to fuction as a normal person and my anxiety would be so bad I would never leave the house or be able to interact with people without being uneasy shaky and paranoid.
This month is my 20 year anniversary and after the first 10 years I began to break down, now I have a full time support worker and when the covoid lock down is eased I will moving into supported housing so that my worker can come to appointments etc with me and make sure I get the benefits I'm entitled to as they have been back logged because of the corona virus.
Even with access to benzodiazepines because I can only take enough to calm my anxiety I never get any rest during the day and have to wait till night to take enough to relax and sleep.
I'm prison I started speaking to clinical psychologists for the first time and am waiting to continue treatment and hopefully be given an official diagnosis.
Thanks for taking the time to read my introduction. I hope this site will help me and allow me to help others.