June 21, 2004

"It comes to you as a teacher" He's tried clinics and therapy, Narcotics Anonymous and rehab. He's taken up exercise and gone through reduction cures. He's even given up on giving up. Now, though, Sebastian Horsley thinks he may have found the answer to his lifelong craving for heroin. Only problem is, it's another dangerous drug...

Ibogaine previously on MonkeyFilter. Ibogaine on the www.

  • Beautifully written, and profoundly moving. Thank you so much for posting this.
  • Very interesting. Thanks.
  • Great article! What happens if you take it and you're not an addict?
  • I'd like to see where he is in 6 months. Great article. I hope it is as easy as it sounds--the addiction problem we have is epidemic.
  • Erowid has a page of useful resources on ibogaine. In particular, they have one experience report about ibogaine. It was written by a woman who took the drug to overcome opiate addiction. Her ibogaine journey has a lot in common with Sebastian Horley's. However, her story didn't have a happy ending. She eventually relapsed and committed suicide several months after starting to take opiates again. Thanks for posting these articles. I would also like to hear how the author is doing in a few months. Ibogaine seems like an incredibly powerful tool that jet-propels people onto a healing path. I'm sure that it takes a ton of work and commitment to stay on that path for the long haul though.
  • Wow, thanks rhiannon. Sobering, so to speak.
  • Bill Burroughs kicked his habit with apomorphine, although he did eventually pick it back up. Heroin's tough like that. "The drug's chief outward effect is nausea and vomiting, but Dr. John Dent held that apomorphine also acts as a metabolic regulator, i.e., it may enhance the restoration of the brain's own production of beta-endorphin, the pleasure-governor, which addiction to opiates tends to diminish and supplant." -WSB, 1984 letter to NY Review of Books
  • Ibogaine seems like an incredibly powerful tool that jet-propels people onto a healing path. I'm sure that it takes a ton of work and commitment to stay on that path for the long haul though, "Following the path of least resistance is what makes men and rivers crooked." -Rekha I. Nambiar Of course, I suspect that Ibogaine would certainly be the lesser of two evils here. And never having been addicted to Herion (or anything else, for that matter), I really have no room to talk. Nonetheless, being "jet-propelled" seems like an easy-out. no offence or disrespect intended, rhiannon. just some food for thought.
  • I sympathize, Weezel, but those of us who've never taken heroin really have no frame of reference for how hard, how excruciatingly painful it is to end a heroin addiction. This isn't a panacea (sp?) by any stretch of the imagination, even if you don't look at the potential health risks. You still have to stop using heroin. But many seem to think that this takes some of the torture out of the process. As someone who's currently using the nicotine patch, there's no way I can quarrel with that. I recently had a conversation with two in-laws (both of whom are smokers) who said that I wasn't "really" quitting because I'm using the patch as a crutch. They argued, in essence, that this was the sissy way out. Granted, they were a bit drunk at the time, but it pissed me off. "Which of us owns a pack of cigarettes?" I asked. My bro-in-law answered that he had managed to quit earlier this year cold turkey, and had suffered through horrible withdrawal to get there. Of course, it didn't take, so I gave him the only answer: "Bang up job."
  • Hey, UK monkeys, I remember seeing a news report years ago about a controversial program over there to help heroin addicts quit by giving them just enough "clean" pharmaceutical heroin to keep the withdrawal at bay. After the appropriate dosage is found, they gradually reduce the dosage to zero. What's become of this? Is it still going, or did it get shut down?
  • "Which of us owns a pack of cigarettes?" I asked. Nice!
  • That seems like a great book, homunculus. One to go on my list. middleclasstool - it's still going but still small and with too few places for people in need. It does seem to have gained some favour though.
  • Sounded like a good thing to me. Understandably controversial, but the report I read claimed that it was pretty successful.
  • Other well-known dopers who've written about their experience under the influence -- Thomas de Quincy and William Burroughs.