I personally started experimenting with psychedelics when I was about 19, and at first, it changed my life in this beautiful way—like unlocking a door. So I stepped through the door and very quickly, within a few years, stopped using drugs to go through the door, because I realized I could go through the door on my own. A lot of my friends didn’t. I have friends who have flipped out on acid or mushrooms and had devastating things happen. I have a friend who did one line of what she thought was cocaine, and it was heroin, and she died instantly and left a child behind. I’ve known friends who have gone from smoking weed every day to doing GHB and speed, and then they die years later of a speed overdose with no teeth in their mouth.
I feel more of a responsibility to friends that I’ve lost, or friends whose lives have been destroyed, or their health is wrecked, or their marriage is gone, or whatever. I wish I had somehow intervened for them before things got bad, and many times I tried, but that doesn’t always work. But I decided I wanted to be as clear and sober as I could be and how fun that could be. I’d go 10 hours a night dancing and going to raves at the beaches and have just as much fun without getting high, more so because I could really participate in each experience, and I could remember my experiences and process on a deeper level. Don’t get me wrong, I love drinking wine; my father is a winemaker, and I don’t really want to have judgments as much as say I promote mental health and clarity and physical health and well-being.