Crystal Meth and Gay Men: Recovery Is Possible with Archstone Recovery

If you take part in the gay party scene, especially if you’re a gay man, you’ve probably been asked to “PNP”—party and play. Partying, of course, means tweaking out of your mind on crystal meth (also known as methamphetamine, tweak, crank, glass, ice, or Tina) until you’re ready to play—think all-night or even multi-day sex marathons. Meth is cheap and easy to score, especially at clubs and bathhouses. Its high can greatly increase sexual pleasure—but it’s not quite so simple. Meth users who party and play are putting themselves at risk in crucial ways. First and foremost, HIV activists consider meth use to be the single biggest driver of new HIV infections in the gay community. If you’re tweaking, you’re not in a position to make good decisions about your sexual health. It becomes easy to say yes to barebacking—or to just not notice when the condom breaks, because you’ve been going for hours. And if you’re high for long sex marathons, you might not be thinking about when it’s time to apply more lube—and that friction can lead to abrasions, which provide an entryway for HIV transmission. There are also shorter-term injuries that can result—if you’re too high, you’re not paying attention to the fact that your leg is going numb, your cock ring’s been on for way too long, and you haven’t had a drink of water in hours.

And then there are the effects of addiction. Because that’s the real problem with crystal—you can’t just do it every now and then, enjoy yourself, and go back to your normal life. Crystal doesn’t let you go that easily. You’ll start that way at first, of course, but highly addictive drugs tend to sneak up on you. You’ll go on a three-day binge… and then another one. You’ll find yourself turning tricks for the drug, spending all your time figuring out ways to get more even as your skin begins to deteriorate and your teeth start to loosen. Once you lose your looks, it’s even harder to get more—and that’s when things really start to get ugly.

If you want to remember what sex felt like before you started tweaking, or if you just want to save what you have before things get any worse, it’s time to quit. It’s important to have help when you stop using meth—methamphetamine withdrawal symptoms can be extremely severe, and you may have other medical conditions you didn’t even notice while you were busy binging. Archstone Recovery Center of the Palm Beaches can help. Our caring, experienced staffers understand what the life is like, and they don’t judge—they just see you through it, from the first day of detox through all twelve steps and into your new life, helping you stay sober with outpatient and extended care programs. If it’s time to leave Fire Island, catch a flight to Palm Beach International Airport in Florida and begin rebuilding your life with Archstone Recovery. It’s only a short distance from Arkansas, Georgia, Tennessee or the Carolinas.

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