by Deona Hooper, MSW
Join us on 12/17/2012 at 8PM EST using the hashtag #SWUnited to discuss PTSD in Veterans, barriers to receiving services, and the use of MDMA (Ecstasy) for the treatment of PTSD. We will be joined by Laura Reed Goodson who has MA in Counseling and a MA in English from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Laura grew up Navy, and she has led writing workshops for veterans for the past 24 years. She has worked as an unpaid civilian advocate for combat veterans since 2006. Laura has also worked as a grief counselor for children during her counseling internship in 2011 and is currently working towards setting up a private practice. Laura will be bringing her expertise on PTSD, MST, grief/loss issues, and brain injury as they affect vets and their family members. Her twitter handle: @reedtome.
In the mid 1980’s, MDMA was banned in the United States despite being widely used as a therapeutic aid. Phil Donahue was the first to bring MDMA to the public for a national debate. This debate has been renewed in the wake of our active military and veterans returning home after being apart of America’s 10 year war in the Middle East. Marsha Rosebaum & Rick Doblin have also been doing research in this area to provide a different perspective and argument for the decriminalization of MDMA.
Here is an excerpt of their research:
The most recent “recreational” drug to be made illegal is MDMA, or “ecstasy.” Its criminalization never should have happened. MDMA had a beneficial therapeutic use prior to scheduling. Hundreds of therapists and psychiatrists used MDMAassisted psychotherapy with thousands of patients suffering from terminal illness, trauma, marital difficulties, drug addiction, phobias, and other disorders. MDMA was also used outside of therapeutic circles. With many anecdotal claims of benefits, users showed little evidence of problematic physiological or psychological reactions or addiction.
Scheduling and the attendant media attention on the controversial public hearings created an expanded market. But the scheduling process was fraught with problems, with the Drug Enforcement Administration’s emergency scheduling itself declared illegal by the courts and its scheduling criteria overturned. Ultimately, criminalization had little deterrent effect on the recreational user population while substantially reducing its therapeutic use. Perhaps the most profound effect of MDMA’s illegality has been the curtailment of scientific research and experimentation with a drug that held therapeutic potential.
The information to be presented here is taken from a recently completed NIDA-funded study of MDMA conducted by the lead author. Using a qualitative methodology, this was an exploratory study in which 100 MDMA users were interviewed in depth between 1987 and 1989. The second author was involved in the scheduling process and had done physiological research on MDMA.
This chapter begins with a short history of MDMA’s use and the scheduling process. Ultimately, it presents an argument critical of criminalization. Read More
Here are a few interesting tweets from our guest expert Laura Reed Goodson.
View the full archived discussion at http://storify.com/SWUnited/ptsd-in-veterans-and-barriers-to-access-services-l
Vets Get Ecstasy to Treat Their PTSD
Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies
Veterans Mental Health Resources
Photo Credit: iraqsolidaritycampaign.blogspot.com